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College of Liberal Arts Dean Search

Update: We are pleased to announce that four candidates have been selected as finalists for the position of Dean.

Dr. Diane Helfers Petrella, Interim Dean and Professor of Piano and Piano Pedagogy at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Campus Visit: February 7-9.

Dr. Stephen Crites, Interim Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Professor of Psychology at the University of Texas at El Paso. Campus Visit: February 13-15.

Dr. Alan Heisel, Special Assistant to the Provost and Professor of Communication and Media at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Campus Visit: February 18-20.

Dr. Denis O’Hearn, Head and Professor of Sociology at Texas A&M University. Campus Visit: February 21-23.

For more information regarding their credentials and their campus visits, click here.

University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Carol Parker has initiated a search for the next Dean of the College of Liberal Arts.

Beth L. Brunk-Chavez, Ph.D., Dean of Extended University, will chair the search committee, which also includes faculty members from a number of departments in the college, and student, staff and alumni representatives.

"UTEP and its College of Liberal Arts offer a wonderful opportunity for prospective candidates who are strongly committed to the arts, humanities and social sciences and have the strategic vision we need to excel in research, teaching and service," Provost Parker said. "As a Hispanic-Serving Institution within the borderlands region with a national reputation for fostering student success and social mobility, and given UTEP’s position as an emerging research university within The University of Texas System, we expect to receive applications from many highly qualified leaders. We anticipate that the search committee will recommend a short list of impressive candidates for on-campus interviews in early Spring Semester 2018."

Search Committee

Beth L. Brunk-Chavez, Ph.D., Dean, Extended University

Laura O'Dell, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Psychology

Brian Yothers, Ph.D., Professor, Department of English
Leanne Alarid, Ph.D., Chair and Professor, Department of Criminal Justice
Matt Desing, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Languages and Linguistics
David Griffin, Chair and Professor, Department of Art
Rosa Alcalá, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Creative Writing
Michael Williams, Ph.D., Professor of History and Director, African-American Studies Program
Maria Cristina Morales, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Sociology
Oscar Macchioni, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Music
Heather Smith, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs
Cynthia Marentes, Director of Community Engagement, Office of the Dean
Margie Nelson, Professor of English, El Paso Community College
Jonathan Picado, Undergraduate Student, College of Liberal Arts
Bailey Eiland, Graduate Student, College of Liberal Arts



To apply, applicants must submit a letter of interest, a CV, and a list of five professional references. No references will be contacted without prior notification to the candidate.

CLA Nomination Form

Application queries should be sent to:
Dr. Beth Brunk-Chavez
Search Committee Chair

To apply, please visit:

Applications will be reviewed beginning November 27th, 2017, and will be accepted until the position is filled. Individuals from underrepresented groups are encouraged to apply.

Update: Preliminary review of applications has begun but new applications, nominations and expressions of interest are still very welcome.

In keeping with its Access and Excellence mission, The University of Texas at El Paso is committed to an open, diverse, and inclusive learning and working environment that honors the talents, respects the differences, and nurtures the growth and development of all.

The University of Texas at El Paso is an Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action employer. The University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, sexual orientation or gender identity in employment or the provision of services. Individuals from underrepresented groups are encouraged to apply.

For Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accommodation information, applicants may contact UTEP's Equal Opportunity Office at