February 19, 2019  

To the Campus Community: 

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Joshua B. Powers, PhD, as Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs. Dr. Powers’ appointment follows a national search for the position, aided by executive consultants Greenwood Asher & Associates. In addition to his role as Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Powers will be appointed Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Professional Studies in the College of Education. He will join the University on July 8, 2019. 

Dr. Powers’ impressive career has focused on student success, which is our number one goal. His work as a department chair and associate vice president for academic affairs, coupled with his experience in student development, gives him a breadth of experience needed to work collaboratively with faculty, chairs, deans, and the Cabinet to help us meet our strategic goals. His commitment to enhancing diversity will help guide our work to close the achievement gap for our diverse student body. His scholarship attests to a broad understanding of the national landscape of higher education. 

Dr. Powers currently serves as Administrative Fellow for the Vermont State Colleges System, a position he assumed in January 2019. Prior to his current appointment, he held multiple positions at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, including Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs (2012-2018), Interim Associate Vice President for Inclusive Excellence (2016-2017), Special Assistant to the Provost for Academic Initiatives (2010-2012), Chair of the Department of Educational Leadership, Administration, and Foundations (2006-2010), Program Coordinator for Higher Education Leadership (2002-2007), and Director of the Office of Educational Research and Evaluation (2003-2006). He was also Special Assistant to the Chancellor at Indiana University, Bloomington (1995-1998); and Assistant Director for Programs, Assistant Director for Operations, and Acting Director of the Newcomb Student Union at the University of Virginia (1990-1995). 

He served as an American Council on Education (ACE) Fellow in the Office of the President at the University of Vermont (2010) and Wright State University (2009) and has served as core faculty for ACE’s Leadership Academy for Department Chairs. 

Dr. Powers has been the recipient of numerous external grants, including funding from 11 national public and private agencies, totaling $4.63 million. He has received funds to support student success-related research, accelerating college completion, and preparing and recruiting underrepresented teachers for public schools, among others. A prolific scholar in the area of higher education leadership, Dr. Powers has a strong record of developing and implementing programs that foster student success and enhance campus diversity. 

Dr. Powers holds a PhD in higher education and organizational behavior and MS in college student personnel administration from Indiana University-Bloomington, and a BA in economics from the University of Vermont. He is a professor of higher education leadership at Indiana State University in Terre Haute. 

I want to thank co-chairs Dr. Danielle Wallace and Dr. Robert Seal and the search committee for their diligence in guiding this process, and the entire University community for participating in the on-campus interviews in January. Dr. Powers will make a significant contribution to the leadership of William Paterson University, and I hope you will join me in welcoming Joshua Powers to our campus in July. 


Richard J. Helldobler, PhD