Ottawa, Kan. (Oct. 11, 2022) – Ottawa University is pleased to announce the hiring of Dr. Joann Bangs as Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. Dr. Bangs brings more than 20 years of higher education experience to OU, most recently as the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculty at Cottey College, an independent women’s liberal arts institution located in Nevada, MO.
“I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to join Ottawa University,” said Dr. Bangs. “I'm inspired by the mission to prepare 'graduates for lifetimes of personal significance, vocational fulfillment, and service to God and humanity' and impressed by the breadth of what OU has achieved. With its strong commitment to understanding and meeting the needs of all students, OU has been able to build a thriving new residential campus in Surprise, Ariz., launch a new Doctor of Business Administration degree program, and support a wide variety of online and adult programs. I look forward to being part OU's future successes.”
Prior to Cottey, Bangs was the Associate Provost of the College for Women, Dean of the School of Business and Professional Studies, and Professor of Economics at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, MN, one of the largest private women’s universities in the nation. She has also taught at DeVry University Online and at Oakland University in Rochester, MI. She earned her Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Minnesota and holds a B.S. in Economics from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Dr. Bangs co-authored an annual research report on women in corporate leadership in Minnesota from 2008 to 2018 and has published numerous journal articles and textbook chapters on pedagogy in economics. In 2021, she participated in Bravely Confronting Racism in Higher Education, a workshop offered by the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
At Cottey College, Dr. Bangs led the self-study process for reaffirmation of accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission, collaborated with faculty on a complete revision of the Faculty Handbook, and oversaw the creation of new academic programs in psychology, secondary education, and elementary education. At St. Catherine University, she developed strategic initiatives for the School of Business and Professional Studies and the College for Women, implemented an academic program prioritization process, and launched a new MBA program.
“In an extremely talented pool of candidates, Joann Bangs quickly emerged as the very best choice for Ottawa University’s next Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs,” shared Dr. Bill Tsutsui, Chancellor of Ottawa University. “Dr. Bangs impressed me and the community as an accomplished educator, a productive scholar, and a seasoned academic leader who will be able to work collaboratively with faculty, staff, students, University leadership, and the Board of Trustees to advance Ottawa University’s academic mission.”
Dr. Bangs will begin her duties on January 1, 2023. She will transition to succeed outgoing University Provost and Chief Academic Officer Terry Haines who announced he will be stepping into a part-time role with the University in anticipation of retirement after more than 17 years with OU.
“For almost two decades, Terry has served the University in a wide range of roles, leading many critically important projects and contributing to virtually every major initiative undertaken by OU,” said Chancellor Tsutsui. “Although I have only worked with Terry a short time, I have come to appreciate and respect his deep commitment to this University and its mission, his broad knowledge and experience of higher education, his good heart, his profound faith, and his wise counsel. Although Terry will be leaving behind all the responsibilities of the provost, he will continue to serve OU and I am thankful the OU community will continue working with him on an ongoing basis on issues of significance to the institution.”