Wednesday, September 10, 2014

STU Chosen as National Leader in Civic Engagement for Third Year in a Row


St. Thomas University has once again been selected as a Lead Institution in Civic Engagement through the NASPA Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement Project (NASPA CLDE). Begun in 2012, the NASPA CLDE initiative was founded by NASPA, the US Department of Education, and the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AACU) to highlight, and build collaboration, among universities with a proven commitment to civic engagement. St. Thomas was part of the CLDE’s first cohort of lead institutions in 2012-13 and 2013-14, and is honored to be chosen once again for this academic year. The NASPA CLDE project includes nationally recognized institutions such as Stanford, Cornell, and Johns Hopkins University - and we are proud to be among their ranks. This is truly an honor for the university. STU commends Coordinator Anthony Vinciguerra for his hard work at the Center for Community Engagement in helping STU students apply their learning to the issues of our world.

Friday, September 5, 2014

St. Thomas University Announces Appointment of New Provost


Respected educational leader assumes key leadership role

Today, St. Thomas University President Monsignor Franklyn M. Casale announced a major institutional appointment that will continue to strengthen the University’s academic leadership position. A visionary and transformational leader in higher education, Irma Becerra-Fernandez, Ph.D., has been named St. Thomas University’s new Provost.

“Dr. Becerra-Fernandez brings to St. Thomas University a wealth of knowledge and expertise in higher education, and an excellent understanding of our unique community,” said Monsignor Casale. “Her exceptional skills will help us continue to build the University’s educational standing and our Catholic intellectual tradition. Irma’s many scholarly and community accomplishments truly exemplify the spirit of St. Thomas.”

Most recently, Dr. Becerra-Fernandez served as the Vice President, Office of Engagement at Florida International University (FIU). She served in a number of academic and senior management positions at FIU since 1990, and has a broad educational background that spans the fields of engineering, information technology and business. She is an internationally recognized expert in the fields of knowledge management, business intelligence, entrepreneurship, and disaster management, and is known and respected as a “creative innovator” in the design of programs. “St. Thomas University is gaining a star in Dr. Irma Becerra-Fernandez,” said FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg. “The partnerships she has created and nurtured at FIU have advanced our mission as a solutions center for our community and I’m sure she will bring the same energy, commitment and intellectual rigor to the office of the provost at St. Thomas University.”

During her tenure at FIU, Dr. Becerra-Fernandez succeeded in a variety of complex challenges, from improved graduation rates to donor relations, and increased resource acquirement. She has coordinated various important community partnerships, including the stewardship of the One Community One Goal’s Academic Leaders Council. Prior to her employment in academia, Dr. Becerra-Fernandez was an Engineer at Florida Power and Light.

“Great cities deserve great universities and Miami deserves to have the greatest Catholic University in the Southeast,” said Dr. Becerra-Fernandez. “Saint Thomas is poised to achieve that vision and I look forward to working with Monsignor Casale, the administration, the dedicated faculty and staff, and our community, to continue providing cutting edge academic offerings that enhance the academic and professional success of our students, while producing ethical leaders for our global economy through our commitment to St. Thomas’ Catholic mission of service to our diverse community.”