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Prilleltensky to Step Down as School of Education and Human Development Dean

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    UM News


    Isaac Prilletensky

    CORAL GABLES, Fla. (September 1, 2017)—After 11 years of distinguished service, Isaac Prilleltensky has decided to step down as dean of the School of Education and Human Development to devote more time to his scholarly endeavors, Jeffrey Duerk, executive vice president and provost, announced on Friday.

    In his announcement, Duerk said Prilleltensky “offered to continue to serve in the deanship until the end of the 2017 fall semester, and I have enthusiastically accepted this offer. Thereafter, he will begin a one-year sabbatical to write a new book. Professor Laura Kohn-Wood, associate vice provost for institutional culture, will oversee the Office of Institutional Culture while he is on leave.”

    Throughout the sabbatical, Duerk said, Prilleltensky will continue to provide him and the office consultation and engagement, albeit at a reduced effort, in his duties as vice provost for institutional culture. When he completes his sabbatical, Prilleltensky will return to UM as professor of educational and psychological studies, and Erwin and Barbara Mautner Chair in Community Well-Being, and continue his role as vice provost for institutional culture.

    President Julio Frenk and Duerk have begun organizing a committee to conduct a national search for a new dean.

    In his message, Duerk noted Prilleltensky’s many accomplishments as dean. Among them:

    He instituted successful new programs, including an undergraduate major in Human and Social Development, master’s programs in Community and Social Change, Education and Social Change, and Physical Fitness and Nutrition, and an online Sport Administration graduate program.

    He established a Community Well-Being Ph.D. and reinstituted Higher Education master’s and Ed.D. programs. Also under his tenure, the Dunspaugh-Dalton Community and Educational Well-Being Research Center was established, and the school raised $22 million for the last capital campaign.

    Under his leadership, the school’s three departments were unified under a single vision and mission, resulting in a 2012 change in name from the School of Education to the School of Education and Human Development.

    A focus on the study, promotion, and integration of educational, physical, and psychological well-being in multicultural communities was initiated. The school’s square footage doubled and facilities were consolidated from seven spaces across campus to two buildings, which house four new research labs.

    Over the years, Duerk said, Prilleltensky also made significant contributions to the life of the University, including serving on the search committees for the president and the dean of Arts and Sciences. He was also a founding member of the Culture Leadership Team. His work on culture transformation at UM led to his appointment as vice provost for institutional culture in 2016.

    While serving as dean, Prilleltensky also maintained an active research program, developing and validating tools for measuring and enhancing well-being, including the Fun for Wellness, an online program now available to all UM faculty and staff.

    Since joining UM, his scholarly work has been recognized by the American Psychological Association with three awards, and in 2015 he won an award from the National Newspaper Association for his humor writing in Miami Today.

    “Please join me in thanking Isaac for his outstanding service to the school and our University,’’ Duerk said in his announcement. “We wish him the very best for his sabbatical and look forward to his continued vital role in our community upon his return.”

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