College appoints new dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

LBarrettThe State University of New York at New Paltz announces the appointment of Laura Barrett as its new dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Dr. Barrett is currently the dean of the College of Liberal Arts and a professor in the English Department at Armstrong Atlantic State University (AASU) in Savannah, Ga. Her appointment is effective August 1.

“Dr. Barrett has an impressive combination of notable faculty and administrative achievements that will serve her well as she takes on the leadership of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences,” said Provost Phillip Mauceri. “I am confident that she will continue to advance the exceptional work already being done by our talented students and faculty in the liberal arts.”

Barrett’s appointment followed a national search. Groups of stakeholders from across campus, including students, faculty, and staff, were invited to meet with the candidates and shared their recommendations for the new dean.

Commenting on her appointment, Barrett said, “I am honored to be joining SUNY New Paltz, an institution whose dedication to liberal education and intellectual discovery I greatly admire, and I look forward to working with colleagues within and beyond the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences to explore and realize new possibilities.”

Barrett brings exceptionally broad experience in interdisciplinary studies, curriculum development, teaching, and research to New Paltz. Prior to her tenure at AASU, Barrett served as the chair of fine arts, humanities, and social sciences at Wilkes Honors College, a branch of Florida Atlantic University. There, she worked with colleagues to create curriculum, centered on interdisciplinary efforts, worked on the development of the writing program, and developed majors and minors, mentored junior colleagues, sponsored student organizations, and served on various standing committees. Barrett also served as assistant/associate director of the Honors Program at the Brooklyn Campus of Long Island University, where she developed and taught interdisciplinary classes, interviewed and selected Honors students, counseled undergraduate students, coordinated special events and co-directed an annual campus conference, and served as an adjunct professor.

Barrett has written numerous articles and delivered many conference presentations and lectures on works of literature ranging from “Moby Dick” and “Ragtime” to “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” and “The Great Gatsby.” In 2001, Barrett was recognized with the Honors College Distinguished Teacher of the Year Award.

She holds a Ph.D. in English from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, a master’s degree in English literature from Columbia University, and a bachelor’s degree in English, summa cum laude, from Long Island University (LIU), Brooklyn Campus.

The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the largest academic unit at SUNY New Paltz, has 16 departments and programs offering majors to about 2,800 undergraduate and graduate students primarily in the humanities and social sciences.