Dr. Susan Kendrick, chair of the Department of English at Southeast Missouri State University, has been named the new interim director of the University Studies program at Southeast Missouri State University effective Oct. 9.
Kendrick replaces Dr. Hamner Hill, who was named interim dean of the College of Health and Human Services effective Sept. 1.
Kendrick will serve as interim director until June 30, 2018. She is responsible for guiding the ongoing development of the University Studies program as part of Southeast’s priorities to improve retention and degree completion.
Kendrick has served at Southeast since 2014 where she is also an associate professor of English. Her research interests are in early British women writers and popular culture, particularly adaptations of William Shakespeare’s plays. She holds a doctoral degree from the University of Oklahoma, a Master of Arts in English from Stephen F. Austin State University and a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Texas. Prior to joining Southeast, Kendrick served as chair of the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies and associate professor of English at Emporia State University.
Kendrick said she is honored to serve as the program’s interim director and continue its mission to prepare students to become effective and knowledgeable citizens.
“Regardless of their major, the interdisciplinary courses of University Studies create the interconnectedness and awareness necessary for a well-educated person,” Kendrick said. “General education is the foundation that helps our students become global citizens.”
As chair of a department that regularly offers courses in the University Studies program, Kendrick brings a lot of experience and knowledge for developing the core learning curriculum for Southeast students, said Dr. Karl Kunkel, Southeast provost.
“During conversations I’ve had with her, she clearly understands the value of general education in both career preparation and citizenship,” Kunkel said. “I find her solid experience as Department Chair of English particularly relevant for leading the University Studies Council and our campus in discussions at a time when we are charting our course for revising the general education program and complying with Senate Bill 997. I look forward to working with her in the coming academic year.”
In June 2016, then Gov. Jay Nixon signed into law Senate Bill 997, which requires Missouri’s two- and four-year public colleges and universities to collaborate on a 42-credit hour general education equivalency matrix, so courses taken anywhere within this system will count if a student transfers. This change was intended to make transferring general education credits between institutions simpler and more consistent for students, as well as more predictable for schools.
She is looking forward to addressing these new challenges and requirements, Kendrick said.