Alison Stevens named Interim VPASA

Alison Stevens has been named Interim Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs.

Stevens is currently Dean of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at North Seattle Community College. Her first day on the job at Shoreline will be Jan. 2, 2014.

Alison Stevens

Alison Stevens

“Dr. Stevens brings a wealth of experience and perspective to Shoreline and I’m very pleased she has chosen this opportunity,” Interim President Daryl Campbell said.

Prior to her duties at North Seattle, Stevens was Dean for Instruction:  Social and Human Services, ASL/ITP, Basic and Transitional Studies at Seattle Central Community College.  She also served at the University of Washington for more than 10 years as the Director of Programs for International Outreach.

In her application materials, Stevens wrote, “The faculty, staff and administration of Shoreline clearly understand what student success is all about: putting resources of all kinds into moving a diverse student body forward.”

Stevens noted the need to address “significant gaps in achievement” between student populations in pre-college math and English courses. “I was the first in Washington state to design and implement a full-credit, mandatory orientation program for all students entering basic skills programs,” Stevens said, referring to her efforts in 2006 at Seattle Central Community College.

At North Seattle, Stevens said, the English department has “virtually eliminated” differences in achievement between students of color and white students enrolled in the developmental English course, English 99. “Students who enter our colleges at low levels of achievement should be given the full range of options for future study and career, with our explicit confidence in their ability to pursue what attracts them most,” she said.

Stevens said she is a strong believer in open communication, collaboration and participation when it comes to working with others. “I have a background in mediating on behalf of the Department of Social and Health Services as a Fair Hearings Coordinator,” she said, “an experience that serves me well in situations of difficult decision-making and interpersonal conflicts.”

At the University of Washington, Stevens said she oversaw the growth of international outreach programs and designed and implemented more than 30 customized, self-support programs for international students.

Stevens holds a Ph.D. in Romance Languages from the University of Washington. While her doctorate was in theoretical syntax, Stevens says it “has served me well as a systems analyst in higher education.” She received a Master’s in Teaching in English as a Second Language from the UW, and a Bachelor’s degree in Foreign Languages and Literature from Washington State University.  She is also a graduate of the Washington Executive Leadership Academy and Stanford’s Executive Leadership and Management Institute.

Stevens will take over from Acting VPASA John Backes with a transition period of about 30 days where both will be on campus. Backes retired from the VP role at Shoreline in 2012, but returned when his successor, James Jansen, decided to leave Shoreline this past summer. The interim position Stevens is taking is anticipated to be at least through the end of the academic year in June, 2014. While Stevens will officially be on leave from North Seattle for the period, she will also be eligible for permanent appointment at Shoreline. That job search is expected to begin after the first of the year.

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