JCSU President Scheduled to Leave Next Summer
JCSU President Scheduled to Leave Next Summer
June 1, 2007 - Johnson C. Smith University President Dr. Dorothy Cowser Yancy announced Friday that she will leave her post effective June 30, 2008.
The announcement came during a Friday morning press conference at which time she also announced the status of the university's $75 million campaign. Under her leadership, the campaign so far has raised $80.6 million. The campaign will end on June 30, 2007.
"I am leaving on a high note," Dr. Yancy said. "I have accomplished everything I mentioned in my inaugural address 13 years ago with the help of the JCSU Board of Trustees, faculty, staff, students, alumni and university friends."
Dr. Yancy first came to JCSU in 1960 as a student from a farm in Alabama. She returned three decades later in 1994 as the university's twelfth president. She made history by becoming its first female to be awarded the prestigious post. In 2001, she became the first female to be elected President of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA).
Through her hands-on management form of leadership, the school's academics and visibility has increased exponentially on both national and regional levels.
"The greatest hallmark of this institution is teamwork," she said. "Teams of faculty, staff, and students work extremely well together here. As a result, we have accomplished great things giving us a reputation that's equivalent to any other higher learning institution equal to or larger than our size."
In 2000, Johnson C. Smith University became the first HBCU "Laptop" university, issuing IBM Thinkpads to all of its students. Prior to this historic feat, Dr. Yancy led the University during a three-year period of strategic planning in technology and faculty/staff development, resulting in an integrated approach to a liberal arts higher education. This too was nationally recognized by her testifying before Congress in 2000 about the status of technology in higher education.
"I feel my greatest accomplishment while at JCSU has been the building and maintenance of our technology infrastructure," Dr. Yancy said. "Without it, we could not have transitioned into the 21st century. Technology impacts everything that we do here at JCSU."
Concurrent with her leadership in the dynamic movement in educational reform are the renovation and construction of state-of-the-art facilities. Under her watch, a new technology center, a library, and a track/stadium/academic complex have been constructed. The renovation and restoration of Biddle Hall, the hallmark of the University, was also funded and completed during her tenure along with Phase I renovation of the Carnegie Building.
Some academic accomplishments during Dr. Yancy's tenure include increasing the average SAT of entering freshmen by 200 points, a growth in applications or admittance from 1,572 to 5,300. U.S. News & World Report magazine also ranked JCSU as a Top Tier Institution among Comprehensive Colleges that offer bachelor's degrees for the past six years. The latest ranking put JCSU at 30th out of 106 colleges in the south that were ranked. The placement rate of students into graduate school or jobs after graduation also increased under Yancy's leadership from 27.6 percent in 1992-1993 to 85 percent in 2005-2006.
JCSU also has completed two accreditation reviews by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), under Dr. Yancy's leadership. Additionally, the Business, and Social Work programs received accreditation under her tenure. These programs received accreditation from the Association of Collegiate Business Schools, and Programs, and the Council on Social Work Education. The Education program received three reaffirmations from the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education during her tenure.
Financially, the university has showed only positive signs of growth under her leadership. University assets have grown from $27.5 million in 1993 to $103.9 million in 2006. The endowment also grew from $13.8 million to $53 million. Alumni giving participation rate also increased to 26 percent, which is in line with the national average for school's the size of JCSU.
"I am excited about moving on to the next chapter of my career," Dr. Yancy said. "JCSU made me who I am today and it feels good to know that I have given back by raising the bar to a higher level. I believe the institution is positioned to move to the next level and I look forward to its continued success."