Dr. Scott L. Thomas Named 12th President of Sterling College

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Dr. Scott L. Thomas

Dr. Scott L. Thomas will assume the presidency of Sterling College on July 1, 2023.

Sterling College announces the election of Dr. Scott L. Thomas as the next President of the College. Thomas is currently the John P. 'Jack' Ellbogen Dean of the College of Education for the University of Wyoming. He brings more than 25 years of teaching and leadership experience at private and public institutions. A first-generation college student, Thomas has devoted his career to advancing programs and policies to expand access to quality college opportunities, ensure student success, and build diverse organizations. 

Allison Hooper, Chair of the College's Board of Trustees, made the announcement to the Sterling community on Tuesday. "The Trustees are grateful to Interim President Lori Collins-Hall for her leadership and deftness with which she has positioned the College for future success and a new president. Looking forward, we are not only humbled by Dr. Thomas' credentials but also moved by his enthusiasm for Sterling's ethos of community, the Work College model, and experiential learning. Furthermore, he stepped onto the Craftsbury campus in March and immediately connected with faculty, staff, and most importantly, students."

Wendy Koenig, Secretary of the Sterling Board of Trustees and Chair of the Presidential Search Committee, shared of the search, "The College selected Dr. Thomas from a robust national pool that reflected vast experience and expertise. Dr. Thomas was the clear choice, having a nuanced understanding of higher education and the eco-social crises at play, as well as the critical intersection of the two. His mission alignment, commitment to data-informed strategies, and strong belief in competency-based education make him the ideal choice for Sterling at this moment."

Thomas holds a BA in Sociology and a Ph.D. in Educational Policy, Leadership, and Research Methods from the University of California, Santa Barbara. An avid surfer, Nordic skier, and outdoor adventurer, Thomas has led a life exploring and engaging with environments and cultures around the world. He understands firsthand the importance of place-based experiences, that scale matters, and has learned to hold deep respect for indigenous ways of knowing. Thomas says, "I have long admired the ways in which Sterling is steadfast to its mission; it has a special history that reflects its commitment to dynamic and engaging learning environments. I was stopped in my tracks upon seeing the job posting, was further inspired by my conversations with Sterling alumnx and current students and am deeply honored to be invited into Sterling's story."

Thomas and his wife, Maia, will move to Vermont in June; his presidency will begin on July 1, 2023. Interim President Dr. Lori Collins-Hall will return to her role as Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Sterling College. 

Founded in 1958 in Craftsbury Common, Vermont, Sterling College advances ecological thinking and action through affordable experiential learning, preparing knowledgeable, skilled, and responsible leaders to face the ecological crises that threatens the future of the planet. Sterling is unique in that it emphasizes hands-on experiential learning, a strong sense of community, and values good work. Sterling operates as one of only nine colleges and universities recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as a Work College, where all residential students are required to work as part of their educational experience, such as on the Sterling farm. The College is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education to offer degrees in Environmental Studies. Media requests can be directed to Christina Goodwin, Vice President for Advancement.

Contact Information:
Christina Goodwin Goodwin
Vice President for Advancement

Original Source: Dr. Scott L. Thomas Named 12th President of Sterling College

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