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UT Arlington appoints San Diego State Student Affairs leader Timothy Quinnan as Vice President for Student Affairs

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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Media Contact: Bridget Lewis, Office:817-272-3317, Cell:214-577-9094, blewis@uta.edu

News Topics: alumni, community service, education, faculty, Greek Life, health and fitness, Maverick Speakers Series, recreation, student life

University of Texas at Arlington President Vistasp Karbhari today announced the appointment of Timothy Quinnan, an expert in student success and leadership education, as UT Arlington’s new Vice President for Student Affairs.

Dr. Timothy Quinnan

Dr. Quinnan currently serves as associate vice president for campus life at San Diego State University, a leading public research institution and one of the top universities nationwide in terms of ethnic and racial diversity among students. He previously served in leadership roles in Student Affairs at the University of Michigan, University of Cincinnati and Florida State University.

At UT Arlington, Dr. Quinnan will direct a wide array of student success and campus life initiatives serving UT Arlington students around the world and will lead a division of 25 departments and programs, 180 employees and more than 330 student organizations. Dr. Quinnan will join the University in September.

Dr. Quinnan brings to UT Arlington a distinguished level of expertise in his field, strong principles and a deep understanding of higher education trends and their impact on students. President Karbhari emphasized that Dr. Quinnan’s tenure at premier universities will significantly benefit UT Arlington’s thriving and diverse student population.

“Dr. Quinnan has built an impressive career as a student affairs professional, educator, global thinker and sought-after expert on student development issues at some of the nation’s leading institutions of higher education,” Karbhari said. “His commitment to individual student success, student life, diversity and excellence in leadership will help guide our University to new heights at a time when we are ready to soar.”

Dr. Quinnan said he is focused on collaborating with UT Arlington students, faculty and senior leaders to advance the University’s mission of being an internationally recognized research institution distinguished by excellence and access.

“I am looking forward to the opportunity to work with President Karbhari, the senior leadership team, faculty, staff, students and alumni to help The University of Texas at Arlington achieve its strategic planning goals of becoming nationally renowned for student engagement and success,” he said.

John Hall, vice president for administration and campus operations at UT Arlington, served as chair of the search committee and said Dr. Quinnan’s credentials, fresh thinking, high-impact programs, energy and passion for serving students made him stand out among candidates. 

“He has extensive experience and accomplishments in creating and sustaining innovative student programs, building relationships that focus on valuing diversity, and a shared vision for how student affairs should be integrated into the University’s academic and research goals,” Hall said.  

Lisa Nagy, an assistant vice president for Student Affairs who has served as interim vice president, said she looks forward to working with Dr. Quinnan as he engages with students and leads the Student Affairs team to new heights.

“We have a wonderfully dedicated and talented staff, and some of the brightest minds at UT Arlington,” Nagy said. “Dr. Quinnan’s collaborative leadership model, commitment to student development, and understanding of fund raising will make him an asset to Student Affairs and the entire University.”

Dr. Quinnan earned his bachelor’s degree in literature and a master’s degree in College Student Personnel from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. He earned his doctorate in Higher Education Administration from the Union Institute & University in Cincinnati.

He has published two books, “Generations Lost” in 2002 and “Adult Students at Risk” in 1997. He also has authored articles in national publications and peer-reviewed journals, including Academic Leadership, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Journal of College and Character and Black Issues in Higher Education.

Varun Mallipadi, the immediate past president of UT Arlington Student Congress who served on the search committee, said Dr. Quinnan’s passion for student development will serve the University well.

“Dr. Quinnan’s experience and passion for the ‘student’ aspect of Student Affairs is very evident,” Mallipadi said. “I believe his leadership style will be of tremendous support to various organizations in Student Affairs, and we will be able to take the next appropriate step as a division under his guidance.”

Among Dr. Quinnan’s other notable accomplishments are directing the prestigious 2005-2006 Institute on College Student Values international conference at Florida State University; founding the award-winning Leadership Summit at San Diego State University in 2010 to complement its Leadership Certificate; and most recently serving as president of the Board of Directors of Break the Silence, a San Diego nonprofit organization founded to combat domestic violence.

At San Diego State University, he also helped to enhance student life, cultivated a healthy and supportive campus environment that engaged Greek life, and played a key role in advancing the university’s strategic plans and goals. 

San Diego State University President Elliot Hirshman said Dr. Quinnan has repeatedly proven himself to be a tremendous asset and SDSU is very fortunate to have had his talents for the past six years.

"Dr. Quinnan has played a critical role during his time here at San Diego State, helping to ensure that ‘Leadership Starts Here’ at San Diego State,” Hirshman said. “On behalf of the entire university, I want to congratulate him on his new role and wish him well as he joins President Karbhari's senior leadership team."

Eric Rivera, vice president for student affairs at San Diego State University, said Dr. Quinnan will be missed professionally and personally.

"Tim was key in engaging the campus in a strategic conversation focused on transforming the student experience at SDSU. His notable contributions include learning community expansion, commuter resource area development, the LGBTQ Pride Center creation and the integrative diversity initiative,” Rivera said. “I am certain he will continue to do exceptional work in his new role as Vice President for Student Affairs at UT Arlington. I will miss him as a colleague and trusted adviser."

Dr. Quinnan and his wife, Lela, have been married 25 years and have a 10-year-old daughter.

About UT Arlington

The University of Texas at Arlington is a comprehensive research institution and the second largest institution in The University of Texas System. The Chronicle of Higher Education ranked UT Arlington as the seventh fastest-growing public research university in 2013. U.S. News & World Report ranks UT Arlington fifth nationally for providing a racially and ethnically diverse campus. Military Times ranked UT Arlington one of the nation’s best universities for military veterans, and PayScale.com ranked UT Arlington eleventh nationally among public and private colleges and universities in Texas that provide the best College Return on Investment. More than 5,000 students live on campus in residence halls and on-campus apartments. More than 10,000 live within five miles of campus. Visit www.uta.edu to learn more.  

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The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.