NKU Names New Dean of Arts & Sciences
Geoffrey S. Mearns, president of Northern Kentucky University, announced Tuesday that Katherine P. Frank has been named dean of the NKU College of Arts and Sciences. Frank currently serves as dean of humanities and social sciences at Indiana University East; she will begin at NKU on July 1.
“We are excited to welcome Katherine to our leadership team,” said Sue Ott Rowlands, NKU provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. “Having begun her career as a teaching assistant and advanced through tenured professorship and academic leadership roles at IU East and Colorado State University-Pueblo, Katherine brings a broad perspective to the College of Arts and Sciences that will help shape the college as we implement our new NKU strategic plan.”
As dean of arts and sciences, Frank will report to Ott Rowlands and lead NKU’s largest college, with 13 academic departments and five centers. The college enrolls approximately 4,800 undergraduate majors and 300 graduate students taught by more than 500 full-time and part-time faculty members. The college offers more than 50 bachelor’s, five master’s, two associate degrees and several undergraduate and graduate certificates. It offers degrees in fine arts, humanities, mathematics, natural sciences, behavioral and social sciences, and organizational leadership.
“I’m thrilled to be joining NKU,” Frank said. “When I visited campus, it was clear that this is a special institution with excellent leadership and engaged faculty, staff, and students. The College of Arts and Sciences offers a rich collection of graduate and undergraduate programs and exciting co-curricular research and learning opportunities. I look forward to the next phase of its development.”
Frank replaces Dr. Samuel Zachary, who will transition back to teaching after nine years in the dean’s office – four as associate dean and five as dean. “The College of Arts and Sciences is a dynamic organization with state-of-the-art science programs and some of the region’s most respected arts offerings,” said President Mearns. “I’d like to thank Sam for his years of leadership in the college.
“Katherine will bring a dynamic vision to lead Arts and Sciences to continued growth,” Mearns said. “Her strong commitment to innovation and student success will help to shape the college as we approach our 50th anniversary in 2018.”
Frank has served as dean of humanities and social sciences at Indiana University East since 2011. During her tenure, she oversaw a restructuring of that institution’s largest school, with 10 undergraduate programs, three of which are delivered at campus satellite centers; four undergraduate certificates; 14 minors; and an M.A. in English as well as a graduate certificate in composition studies. She oversees a budget of about $9 million.
Under Frank’s leadership, student credit hours increased by approximately 13 percent and the school’s faculty grew significantly, with 13 new faculty hires in two years. The school also implemented new online degree completion programs, completion programs at satellite centers, an accelerated three-year degree program, and an M.A. in English. The school also saw an increase in study abroad options and a significant expansion and enhancement of campus art galleries and studios.
Prior to her service at IU East, Frank served as chairperson of English and foreign languages at Colorado State University-Pueblo.
Frank’s research interests include Romantic and Victorian English Literature, rhetoric and composition, literary theory, the scholarship of teaching, and academic leadership. She has published numerous academic articles on topics ranging from the role of libraries in sustainable dual-credit programs to student recruitment and retention. She won the Indiana University East Distinguished Faculty Service Award last year.
She is from Colorado Springs, Colo., and earned her B.A. in English from Bates College, magna cum laude, and her M.A. in English and Ph.D. in English from the University of Washington.
Frank said she and her husband look forward to moving to the region.
Photo: Katherine Frank