Provost and deans

UA's Senior Vice President, Provost and Chief Operating Officer

Dr. William M. “Mike” Sherman

Dr. William M. “Mike” Sherman

Dr. William M. “Mike” Sherman is UA’s senior vice president, provost and chief operating officer. As UA’s top academic officer, Sherman has oversight of academic planning and budgeting, curriculum development, enrollment and retention initiatives, assessment, student affairs and information technology services.

Sherman joined UA in 2010, having arrived from The Ohio State University, where he served as vice provost for academic planning and professor of sport and exercise science.

At Ohio State, Sherman led strategic planning for OSU’s colleges, with a primary focus on academic facilities and resources. He helped launch OSU’s academic facilities planning initiative, and he helped set the stage for implementing the university’s global agenda. Sherman held reporting responsibilities for four regional campuses, University Libraries, the John Glenn School of Public Affairs, and the P-12 Project, among others. Read more about Sherman.


Deans

Dr. Eric J. Amis
Dean, College of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering,
R.C. Musson and Trustees Professor of Polymer Science


Dr. Eric J. Amis was appointed in June 2014 as dean of The University of Akron’s world-renowned College of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering.

He oversees a program that is the largest and broadest in the U.S. The college is organized for teaching and research at the graduate level, granting the M.S. and Ph.D. in either polymer science or polymer engineering. In addition to the Department of Polymer Science and Department of Polymer Engineering, there is the Institute of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering. The institute oversees the facilities, instrumentation and support staff and generally provides a research focus for the department faculty and graduate students.

Amis comes to UA from United Technologies Research Center (UTRC) where he had been director of physical sciences since 2009. He led a team of 140 scientists and engineers responsible for research and development in advanced manufacturing, materials science, chemistry, chemical engineering, structural integrity, applied physics and measurement science. His responsibilities included developing external partnerships aligned with UTRC strategies. More.


Susan G. Clark
Interim Dean, College of Education
Professor of Education
Juris Doctor


Susan G. Clark, Ph.D., J.D., began an appointment as interim dean of the College of Education on Aug. 19. As a professor in the Department of Educational Foundations and Leadership she has taught school law, disability law, and other leadership and management courses for practicing and prospective school leaders.

Clark earned a law degree at UA's McDowell School of Law, a Ph.D. in Educational Administration at Kent State University, a master's degree in educational administration and instructional services at Xavier University, and a bachelor's degree at Miami University.

A frequent speaker at local, state, national and international conferences, she also has provided many school and staff in-services for public school districts, educational service centers and for career centers. Clark also hosts a yearly Women Leaders Conference on campus through the College of Education Office of Outreach and Professional Learning. She is a member of the Ohio Council of School Board Attorneys as well as the Ohio State, Akron and Cleveland Bar Associations and is licensed to practice in all state courts in Ohio and the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. In addition, she is the past president of the Education Law Association, an international organization serving as the premier source of information on education law, and has served on its board of directors since 2007. More.


Daniel Deckler
Interim Dean, Wayne College
Professor of Engineering


On July 1, 2013, Daniel Deckler, Ph.D., P.E., became interim dean of The University of Akron Wayne College, UA’s first regional campus. Located in Orrville, Wayne College opened in 1972 to serve residents of Wayne, Medina and Holmes counties. Today, the college has more than 2,000 students enrolled each semester in credit classes, with another 2,000 participating in continuing education and/or workforce development training.

Deckler, who joined the Wayne College faculty in 1991 to teach the first two years of coursework in mechanical, civil and electrical engineering, most recently served as the interim associate dean at Wayne. In addition, Deckler was the adviser and area coordinator for engineering. He has chaired the Wayne College budget and faculty committees and the University Wide Appeals committee. He also has served as Wayne College’s representative to the Faculty Senate and as a member of the Provost Advisory Council.

Before joining The University of Akron Wayne College, he worked at Rockwell International, The Timken Company and Loral Defense systems.  While in industry, he worked on the space shuttle and space station programs, the parametric bearing design software project, and the antisubmarine warfare and F-15 flight simulator programs.

Deckler earned a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering at Ohio Northern University in 1985, and went on to earn both an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 1990 and a Ph.D. in Engineering in 2002 at The University of Akron. In 1999, he earned an Ohio professional engineer’s (PE) license. More.


Dr. David Gordon
Dean, College of Health Professions

Dr. David Gordon joined The University of Akron in October 2014 as the inaugural dean of the new College of Health Professions.

Most recently, Gordon was dean of the School of Health Professions and Studies at the University of Michigan-Flint. Gordon had been associated with the University of Michigan since 1991, having served most recently as associate dean for diversity and career development and professor of pathology at the university's medical school.

Gordon earned a bachelor's in chemistry from Amherst College and an M.D. from Harvard Medical School. At Harvard, he completed a vascular biology research fellowship. He also completed an internal medicine internship at the University of Massachusetts, before training in anatomic pathology at the University of Washington in Seattle. Prior to joining the University of Michigan, Gordon was on the faculty at the University of Washington and worked as a human diagnostic and experimental cardiovascular pathologist.

The College of Health Professions is home to the School of Nursing, School of Social Work, School of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, School of Nutrition and Dietetics, School of Counseling, School of Sport Science and Wellness Education, and the School of Allied Health Technology. More.


Dr. Ravi Krovi
Dean, College of Business Administration
Professor of Management and Information Systems 

Dr. Ravi Krovi, who joined The University of Akron's College of Business Administration in 1999, was appointed dean of the college on Dec. 15, 2010, after serving as interim dean since July 1, 2009.

Krovi oversees a college that offers undergraduate degree programs in accounting, e-marketing and advertising, finance, management, marketing, sales and international business. The CBA’s graduate program is “a best business school” and “one of the best MBA programs in the world,” according to the 2009 edition of The Princeton Review's Best 296 Business Schools.

Krovi's distinguished record of service to the University includes holding positions as chair of the Department of Management from 2005-2009 and director of the Center for Information Technologies and eBusiness from 2003-2005. Krovi also played a significant role in the college's reaccreditation efforts.

A native of India, Krovi earned a B.E. in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Baroda in India in 1986. He then went on to earn both an M.S. in Mathematical Sciences (Computer Science and Statistics) and a Ph.D. in Management Information Systems at Memphis State University, in 1988 and 1993, respectively. More.


Dr. Chand K. Midha
Executive Dean, Buchtel College of Arts and Sciences

Associate Provost for Academic and Financial Affairs
Professor of Statistics
Interim Dean of The Graduate School
Interim Vice Provost for Research

Dr. Chand MidhaDr. Chand Midha was named dean of the Buchtel College of Arts and Sciences in November 2010 by The University of Akron Board of Trustees. He had served in the post on an interim basis since January 2009. The college is the largest and most diverse of UA’s degree-granting colleges with 18 departments and several programs.

In early 2011, he also was named acting interim dean of the College of Creative and Professional Arts. The college includes the Mary Schiller Myers School of Art, School of Communication, School of Music, and School of Dance, Theatre, and Arts Administration.

Midha’s distinguished record of service includes holding positions as founding chair of the Department of Statistics and liaison to the Northeast Ohio College of Medicine, or NEOMED. In 2004 he was elected a Fellow of the American Statistical Association.

He joined UA in 1983 after service as a visiting assistant professor at the University of Florida, Gainsville. He rose through the ranks in UA’s Department of Mathematical Sciences from assistant professor to become director of the Center for Statistical Consulting in 1992. In 1996, he became a full professor.

Midha earned an M.S. and PG Diploma in agricultural studies at the Indian Agricultural Statistics Research Institute, and a Ph.D. in Statistics at Iowa State University. More.


Phyllis G. O'Connor 
Interim Dean, University Libraries
Professor of Bibliography

In her role as interim dean of University Libraries, Phyllis G. O'Connor oversees three libraries that support the learning and research needs of faculty and students at the Akron campus and the Medina County University Center. The libraries provide print and media resources on-site and access to more than 300 electronic databases, thousands of full text electronic journals, e-books, and other online resources that can be accessed either on campus or remotely 24/7.

O'Connor joined University Libraries in 1978 as a full-time staff member in the Circulation Department of Bierce Library. She has worked in the Dean's Office since 1989, where she facilitated the implementation of two online library systems and the electronic document delivery system. As associate dean since 2008, she has led the management of human resources, budgets, physical facilities and service operations. In addition, O'Connor served as the project manager for the recent Bierce Library Renovation and Learning Commons project.

She is considered one of the founders of OhioLINK, having led the committee that designed the statewide borrowing system. She continues to lead resource-sharing initiatives for OhioLINK and recently served two years as the statewide coordinator of Ohio's regional book depository system.

O'Connor earned a B.A. in English at The University of Akron and an MLS in Library Science at Kent State University.


Lakeesha K. Ransom
Dean, Honors College

Lakeesha K. Ransom, Ph.D., who was named dean of the Honors College in June 2015, brings 20 years of leadership experience in educational, governmental, nonprofit and corporate entities to her role at UA.

Ransom comes to Akron from the University of Toledo, where she was the chief academic and administrative officer and founding dean of the Jesup Scott Honors College. She is highly experienced in developing innovative learning initiatives and problem-solving strategies, along with entrepreneurship programs.

At the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Ransom earned a Ph.D. in Human Resource Development and Strategic Management and an M.A. in Comparative and International Development Education. She earned a B.A. in International Business at Southwest Minnesota State University.

The academically rigorous Honors College was created in 2005 as an extension of the University Honors Program. It is housed in the Honors Complex, a combination living and learning center. More.


Todd A. Rickel, Ph.D.  
Vice Provost and Executive Dean of the College of Applied Science and Technology (formerly Summit College) 

Todd A. Rickel joined UA in early 2015 to lead the College of Applied Science and Technology in its evolution as a portal college for nontraditional students as well as the development of the University's satellite campuses and online education.

Prior to joining UA, Rickel served as CEO of Rickel Education Group, a consulting firm in the public and private sectors in the education, technology, telecom and financial fields. Rickel's expertise includes online and hybrid program implementation and delivery, accreditation and regulatory compliance, faculty hiring, student services and graduate employment, new student enrollment and financially sustainable growth, international recruitment and curriculum development.

Rickel earned a B.S. in Biology in 1991, an M.A. in Cultural Anthropology in 1996, and a Ph.D. in Cultural Foundations of Education in 2000, all at Kent State University. More.


Matthew J. Wilson
Dean, School of Law


On July 31, 2014, Matthew J. Wilson became dean of the School of Law.

He leads a program with diverse offerings — beyond the traditional preparation for a career in law, the school offers joint degrees in business, taxation, public administration and human resource management. It also offers certificate programs in litigation and intellectual property. The School of Law's competition teams have a long history of excellence on the regional and national levels.

To his role Wilson brings a wide range of experience, working domestically and internationally as a business executive, commercial litigator, in-house general counsel, law professor and senior academic administrator.

Wilson comes to UA from the University of Wyoming College of Law, where he joined the faculty in 2009. A professor of law, his areas of specialization include international business law, intellectual property law, commercial litigation, international dispute resolution, comparative law and Japanese law. Wilson also has served as associate dean for academic affairs since July 2013, and was the associate dean of student affairs from August 2012 to July 2013.

During his time in Wyoming, Wilson was designated as a distinguished international scholar by Kyung Hee University Law School in Seoul, South Korea. He taught international negotiations, was a guest lecturer for other courses, led symposia and worked with the moot court team. More.