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Office of the Provost

A message from Provost Mathews

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff Colleagues, and Friends,

Since joining Central Michigan University as your Chief Academic Officer, over one year ago, I have been delighted and impressed by the talent, dedication, and resiliency of our faculty, staff, and students.  The genuine sense of community defines our campus, continues to attract excellence, and differentiates us.  This, combined with our collective commitment to growing academic quality, inspires me personally.  As we move into our new academic year, I hope that the energy that emanates from our classrooms, laboratories, studios, concert halls, and theatres, as well as our Innovation and Online locations around the world, fills you with excitement and joy, while inspiring you to fire up for the new year.

Looking back at our recent accomplishments, I am proud of our collective engagement in developing the university’s next strategic plan and Academic Vision. As a campus first, we chose scenario planning as our key means of envisioning the future to focus our academic vision. Many of you contributed to our survey and workshops to define the drivers of the future. In the next two months, we will develop the academic action plan, to complement our university strategic plan, to define our academic path forward for the next decade. 

I am also proud of our many achievements in the colleges. Here is just a sample of the exciting things that took place last year:

  • Central Michigan University was unanimously voted into the Michigan Space Grant Consortium (MSGC) and is now an officially designated space grant institution with new access to NASA internships, fellowships, and seed grants.
  • The Master of Arts in Counseling online programs received accreditation by the Council for Accreditation for Counseling and Related Programs (CACREP).
  • The Rural Health Equity Institute launched to focus on rural health needs for education and healthcare.
  • The Integration of Science, Technology, and Engineering (InSciTE) certificate was approved and enrolled its first cohort of students who embarked on developing career-relevant skills by investigating, proposing, and designing solutions to real-world problems.
  • University Libraries open a family study room, located in Park 118, to offer a safe space conducive to adults studying while accompanied by children.
  • The new School of Communication, Journalism and Media was formed in the College of the Arts and Media to prepare students for careers in these rapidly changing professional fields.
  • Fire Up! Forward, a new dual/concurrent enrollment program for CMU was launched through Innovation & Online, in partnership with several colleges, to provide opportunities to high school students who have an interest in high-demand career pathways.
  • The College of Business Administration launched a new Office of Student Engagement & Professional Development (referred to as the HUB), which focuses on the holistic development of students and includes experiential learning, career exploration and readiness, leadership, and societal impact.
  • To meet student and community demand, the Physician Assistant program increased the size of its incoming cohort from 40 students to 60 students.
  • The College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, in partnership with the Michigan Historical Society coordinated the first on-site Michigan History Day competition, bringing over 800 people (primarily high school students) to the CMU campus.
  • The Office of Research and Graduate Studies reported that in FY22 and FY23, CMU secured more than $25,000,000 in extramural funding, representing the first time CMU has surpassed this threshold in consecutive years.
  • Several CMU students and faculty received National Scholarship awards, including Xander Ault, Dr. Nailya DeLellis, Annabelle Fortine, Ishani Gaidhane, Elijah Joki, Dakota KelbeckChloe McKinley, and Elizabeth Valicenti.  

In closing, I look forward to focusing on every opportunity to prepare students for the future, while positively impacting our communities during this time of rapid change. At a minimum, we will expand our focus on justice and equity, sustainability, artificial intelligence, building transferable skills for a polarized world, new immersive high-impact learning practices, and leadership development.

Thank you for all that you do to make this a university of choice. Welcome back!


Nancy E. Mathews

Provost and Executive Vice President

Fire Up Chips!