Ask... the new Provost of Rowan University

Ask... the new Provost of Rowan University

Ali Houshmand, 52, came to Rowan University this fall as the university's new provost. Houshmand, an industrial engineer by training, served as associate provost, interim provost, senior vice president for academic affairs and dean of Drexel University's College of Professional Studies before going to Rowan. Before Drexel, he was an engineering professor at the University of Cincinnati. Houshmand, who lives in Exton, Chester County, likes to run. He has run 17 marathons, including five in Boston and one in New York.

Question:What is a provost?

A: He/she is responsible for academic matters on campus and deals with all colleges, programs, enrollment management, financial aid, registrar,faculty development, tenure, etc. A provost usually acts as the president in his/her absence.

Q:How long have you been in the field of education?

A:Except for one year at United Airlines where I was a research analyst, I have been in this field either as a student, researcher, consultant, teaching assistant or administrator since the age of 6.

Q:What does the new University College mean for Rowan and the region?

A:Rowan's University College (also called Professional and Continuing Education College - PACE College) will develop and deliver quality education at an affordable price in convenient settings to anyone who wants it, including part time, weekend, online and off-campus offerings. We're very excited about the opportunities PACE College will provide for working adults and others who may not be able to complete their degrees or attend classes in a traditional fashion... . As a state institution, we have a responsibility to make higher education more accessible, particularly in our region.

Q:Who will be your target audience?

A: We expect the college to start next fall. Our target audience is everyone who needs the education, especially those 25 or older.

Q:About how many students will University College be able to accommodate?

A:Due to multiple modes of delivery, we can accommodate many. We live by the motto, "Tell us what you need and when you need it, and we will be there."

Q:Will online courses be part of this initiative?

A: Yes! Like the other offerings, online courses are about convenience. We hope to have 100 or more [online] courses within one year.

Q: Are you limiting this venture to certain fields or majors?

A:We would like to offer what the public wants rather than what we think the public wants!

Q:Why do you run?

A:My intention every day is to exercise, and if I don't, there is a void. I think if your mind and body are not in sync, you are suboptimal in your ability to perform. The added energy you get when your mind and body are in sync is not linear, it's exponential. Exercise is an avenue for you to get more in tune with your inner self and become a better person.

Additional Details:

Date Published: Sunday, November 12, 2006 (All day)
Source URL: The Philadelphia Inquirer