LEXINGTON, Ky.—President R. Owen Williams has announced that English professor Martha Billips has been named associate dean for first-year academic programs and advising, effective August 1. Billips taught in the Foundations of the Liberal Arts program for first-year students from 1997-2012 and directed the program from 2001-12. She has also served as humanities division chair.
“This new role is an excellent fit for Martha,” said President R. Owen Williams. “In many important ways, she has already contributed enormously to the way we educate first-year students at Transylvania. Through her 15 years of experience with our former FLA program, she gained a keen understanding of the critical transition that first-year students make in adjusting to the rigors of college-level academics. That background will serve her well as she works to support our first-year students in their liberal arts studies at Transylvania.”
Billips looks forward to the challenges of her new role and feels the timing is especially significant.
“With the advent of August term and the creation of our First-Year Seminar program, we can provide our students with a distinctive, challenging and multi-disciplinary first-year curriculum,” she said. “This will prepare them well for the rest of their educational experience at Transylvania. I look forward to playing an important role in this initiative.”
Billips will remain a tenured member of the faculty, assume her rank as professor of English and teach at least one course per year. She came to Transylvania in 1997 after earning a B.A. in English from Transylvania and an M.A. and Ph.D., both in English, from the University of Kentucky.