New provost welcomed to Western Connecticut State University

DANBURY, CONN. — Western Connecticut State University President James W. Schmotter has announced that Dr. Jane McBride Gates will be the university’s next provost and academic vice president.

McBride Gates has been dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Savannah State University in Georgia since 2002. Nearly 4,000 students attend Savannah State, part of the University System of Georgia.

“I believe that Jane McBride Gates possesses academic experience, personal values and leadership style that fit perfectly with our university’s mission, culture and priorities,” Schmotter said. “I look forward with great enthusiasm to working with her to advance Western.”

McBride Gates said she is looking forward to joining the WCSU community in July.

“I am excited about the prospect of joining and working closely with talented administrators, faculty, staff and students at Western Connecticut State University,” McBride Gates said. “I look forward to working within the academy and most especially within the Danbury community and beyond to ensure that this great institution continues to be a dynamic public university of choice for programs of excellence in the liberal arts and professions.”

In 2006-07, McBride Gates served as interim vice president for Academic Affairs at Savannah State, Georgia’s oldest Historically Black University. Before relocating to Georgia, she was a tenured faculty member, chair of the political science department, and interim associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Arkansas State University.

McBride Gates earned her bachelor’s from Arkansas State; a Master of Public Administration from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; and a Ph.D. in political science from Southern Illinois University, with major degree areas in public policy, organizational behavior and Chinese politics. She also has pursued advanced management training at Harvard.

Western conducted a national search for the position to replace the former provost, Dr. Linda Rinker, who left the university after five years to join Davenport University in Michigan for a similar position.

For more information, call the Office of University Relations at (203) 837-8486.


Western Connecticut State University offers outstanding faculty in a range of quality academic programs. Our diverse university community provides students an enriching and supportive environment that takes advantage of the unique cultural offerings of Western Connecticut and New York. Our vision: To be an affordable public university with the characteristics of New England’s best small private universities.


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