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New Provost Named at Hobart and William Smith Colleges

Vice provost at Gettysburg College gets the nod for prime position at HWS

(April 25, 2005) GENEVA, N.Y.– Hobart and William Smith Colleges President Mark D. Gearan announced today the appointment of Dr. Teresa Amott to the position of Provost and Dean of the Faculty. In this capacity, Amott will be the chief academic officer of the Colleges, charged with stewardship of the academic program. She also will be responsible for hiring and evaluating faculty, and will oversee the registrar’s office and library staff, along with other academic services.

Amott credits HWS’ distinctive curriculum and pedagogy, an impressive array of lecture forums and the scholarly work of the faculty as the chief reasons she sought and accepted the provost post.

“The campus community is so vibrant and engaged,” she said. “When I saw how actively students and faculty at the Colleges explore, create, and question, both inside and outside the classroom, I knew this was a wonderful place for me. The Colleges’ commitment to global citizenship resonated with my own values. I look forward to joining the Geneva community.”

Currently, Amott is the vice provost at Gettysburg College, a post she has held since 2000. Previously, she chaired the economics department at Bucknell University from 1994 to 1998 and served as academic coordinator of the residential colleges, a program for entering students. She has taught at several institutions, including Harvard Divinity School, the University of Massachusetts and Wellesley College.

Amott holds a Ph.D. in economics from Boston College and a bachelor’s degree from Smith College. Her field of specialization is labor economics, with a focus on the experiences of women and minority groups.

“Dr. Amott’s impressive academic credentials and administrative experience, combined with her respect and deep understanding of the importance of a liberal arts education, make her an ideal choice for this position,” said Gearan. “I look forward to working closely with her.”

Several members of the Colleges community joined the President in welcoming Amott to the Hobart and William Smith Community. “Teresa Amott is the right person to fill the position of provost at Hobart and William Smith Colleges,” said Charles H. Salisbury Jr. ’63, chairman of Colleges’ Board of Trustees. “Not only does she possess a strong academic background and impressive leadership experience, she has demonstrated a complete understanding of the needs of a liberal arts institution on every level.”

Susanne McNally, professor of history, said “Teresa Amott’s record in scholarship and faculty-oriented administration both suggest that she can think abstractly without losing sight of the people at the other end of the analysis or the policy. This is a very precious quality in the modern world. I think she could help the Colleges to be what might be called, ‘our best selves.’ So I am really glad she is joining us.”

Ruth Freeman, interim provost and dean of faculty who led the committee that conducted the national search, said Amott stood out amid an impressive slate of applicants. “The candidates were judged on academic accomplishment, familiarity with residential, liberal-arts colleges and administrative experience. Teresa Amott met each criterion with flying colors,” said Freeman. “Her experiences at Bucknell and Gettysburg have prepared her for even greater responsibilities here, and we are confident the community will welcome her leadership.”

Amott will join HWS in early July.

In addition to Freeman and McNally, other search committee members included John Halfman, associate professor of geoscience, Mary Salibrici, assistant professor of writing and rhetoric, Kevin Dunn, assistant professor of political science, Peter Polinak, vice president for finance, Thomas D’Agostino, director of the Center for Global Education, and Board members Beth Yingling ’75 and James Spira ’64.

Hobart College and William Smith Colleges are coordinate, private, liberal arts institutions located in Geneva, N.Y. — the heart of the Finger Lakes region. The Colleges, which have a combined enrollment of 1,800, offer a remarkably broad array of majors and minors, with a cross-disciplinary flavor intended to better inform both professional and intellectual pursuits. The Colleges are noted for an ambitious emphasis on international study and for their programs in community service. Hobart College for men and William Smith College for women share faculty, facilities, and curriculum, but maintain separate dean’s offices, athletics programs, student governments, and traditions.

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A high-resolution photo of Amott is available at http://campus.hws.edu/new/releases/hires/Amott_Teresa_hires.jpg.