University of Arkansas System President Dr. Donald R. Bobbitt will recommend Peggy Doss, Ed.D., provost and vice president for academic affairs at the University of Arkansas at Monticello (UAM), to serve as the next chancellor of UAM following the retirement of Chancellor Karla Hughes, Ph.D., on Dec. 31.
Bobbitt will recommend the appointment of Doss during a special telephone meeting of the Board of Trustees of the University of Arkansas on Monday, Oct. 21 at 3 p.m. The Board will immediately go into executive session to consider the appointment of Doss effective Jan. 1, 2020 and Lisa Willenberg as chancellor at the University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton, effective Nov. 1.
“Peggy Doss has served the University of Arkansas at Monticello capably as an administrator, dean and provost, and I am looking forward to working with her as chancellor,” Bobbitt said. “Her experience and relationships on campus and in the Monticello community will give her a head start on planning for the future development of the institution as a critically important academic and economic asset for southeast Arkansas.”
As provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs, Doss has focused on student retention efforts such as the UAM Degree Pathways initiative, which directs students to entry point programs where they are most likely to be successful. She also has involved faculty and staff in an early alert system and implemented a “15-to-finish” campaign encouraging students to enroll in a least 15 hours each semester to promote graduation in four years.
Among other projects, Doss has partnered with academic leaders and faculty to promote student success initiatives such as embedding tutors in classrooms, enriching student advising, and offering additional professional development opportunities for faculty.
“I’m humbled to have been given the opportunity to continue to serve my alma mater in a new way,” Doss said. “I’m looking forward to working with faculty, staff and community leaders to ensure a strong future for UAM and the region. I feel that my experience across the educational system in southeast Arkansas has given me a unique perspective on the important role our university plays in the quality of life and economic advancement of our region, and I am excited to get to work to help shape the future of the institution and our community in this role.”
Prior to becoming provost, Doss served for a decade as dean of the School of Education. She has also served UAM as vice chancellor for student affairs and university relations after working in public education as a teacher and administrator.
Doss holds degrees from three UA System institutions. She earned a doctoral degree in higher education administration and a master’s degree in gifted and talented education from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and also holds a Master of Education from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. She earned her bachelor’s degree in education from UAM and will be the only graduate of the school to lead the institution in its history.
Doss said her main goals include enhancing recruitment and retention of students, but she considers student engagement an all-encompassing feature of a successful university.
“I plan to continue to prioritize student success efforts, as Dr. Hughes has done, and that includes a focus on engaging students, faculty and staff in all aspects of our community of learning,” Doss said.
The only open admissions four-year institution in the state, UAM is distinctive in that its three campuses, including Colleges of Technology in Crossett and McGehee, offer higher educational opportunities ranging from technical certificates to graduate degrees.
Members of the media may observe the meeting of the Board of Trustees on Monday at the UA System Administration Building at 2404 N. University Ave. in Little Rock.