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Cowen named NDUS Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs

Posted on 10/28/2013

Sonia S. Cowen, Ph.D.
For More Information Contact:
Linda Donlin, Director of Communications and
Media Relations
North Dakota University System
Phone: 701.328.2962
E-mail: linda.donlin@ndus.edu


BISMARCK, N.D. - Sonia S. Cowen, Ph.D., has been named Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs for the North Dakota University System. Dr. Cowen starts her job at NDUS on Nov. 12, replacing Dr. Michel Hillman, who has been serving in the position on a temporary contract.

"Dr. Cowen has an excellent reputation for helping to build programs," said NDUS Interim Chancellor Larry C. Skogen. "We are excited that she is willing to come to North Dakota and contribute her expertise as we fine tune the Pathways to Student Success plan."

Skogen said he made an interim appointment because it will allow the next Chancellor to pick his/her own Vice Chancellor in 2015.

"Meanwhile, we are determined to make progress in the Board's direction to enhance the quality of education in our state, so it was important to move expeditiously to fill this position with someone who can help us accomplish our goals," said Skogen, who officially begins his duties as Interim NDUS Chancellor on Nov. 1. "In her last two positions, Dr. Cowen was specially invited to assist with ground-floor academic programming, and she did an outstanding job. I worked with her in the past, and I am confident she is the right person for this time in our history and for what we plan to achieve."

As the chief academic officer of NDUS, the Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs oversees all academic and student affairs functions within NDUS including policy development, implementation management, and multi-campus coordination.

"I am looking forward to working with the University System staff and with all of the academic leaders at the outstanding institutions in North Dakota," Cowen said. "This is an exciting time, and I believe we can accomplish a great deal as we work together to provide the best possible education for our students."

Dr. Cowen earned her Ph.D. in Educational Leadership: Higher Education Administration from Gonzaga University, Spokane, Wash.; her Master's in Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Montana, Missoula, Mont.; and her bachelor's degree in English from Eastern Washington University, Cheney, Wash. She has more than 30 years' experience in senior to executive academic posts, including responsibilities for academic and student affairs in three statewide university systems. She was contracted by the U. S. Army and Air Force to teach leadership to officers and recruits. She has served in various capacities as faculty and administrator in institutions that are similar in mission to NDUS - community colleges as well as regional and research universities. Her work has been published in numerous national refereed journals on topics specific to higher education, including leadership, accreditation, critical thinking and use of simulation-modeling-visualization technologies. She has been appointed to various national and state advisory boards and task forces, including rural revitalization, P-16 advisory, workforce investment, accreditation and reciprocity.


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