Humanities faculty member to become UHV interim assistant vice president

 Uppinder Mehan

Uppinder Mehan will be the interim assistant vice president for academic affairs in the provost’s office at the University of Houston-Victoria during the spring and summer, it was announced on Friday. Mehan is an assistant professor of humanities and the interim chair of the Humanities Division in the UHV School of Arts & Sciences. He has taught at UHV since 2008 and has 15 years of teaching experience.

“I welcome the opportunity to serve UHV as we continue to grow and add programs for the student body,” Mehan said. “Serving as the interim chair of the Humanities Division was an opportunity for me to experience administrative work, and I have enjoyed many aspects of it.”

The provost’s office coordinates academic operations for the university, including formulating policies; appointing, hiring and evaluating faculty members; designing program development and delivery; and overseeing enrollment and student services.

“I have always had a strong sense of service to the institution and felt a responsibility to serve student and faculty needs,” Mehan said. “That has led to my service on various committees.”

After receiving his doctorate in English from the University of Toronto in 1996, Mehan taught in the Writing, Literature and Publishing Department at Emerson College in Boston. He developed classes in contemporary world literature and took a lead role in establishing Emerson’s post-Colonial studies minor. In 2004, he co-edited a new writing anthology, “So Long Been Dreaming: Post Colonial Visions of the Future,” with Caribbean writer Nalo Hopkinson.

Mehan moved to Victoria in 2008. He serves as the associate director for the Society for Critical Exchange, a scholarly society devoted to theory. He also has worked with Jeffrey Di Leo, dean of the School of Arts & Sciences, to host the annual SCE Winter Theory Institute.

In addition to teaching and research, Mehan has served on the UHV Faculty Senate and other committees.

Mehan will replace Assistant Provost Holly Verhasselt, who has accepted a position as a visiting assistant professor in the UHV School of Business Administration.

“Dr. Mehan’s extensive classroom experience will augment his administrative skills,” said Don Smith, interim provost and special assistant to the president through the fall semester. “We welcome him to the provost’s office and have every confidence he will serve the university well.”

Earlier in the week, three finalists were named for the position of UHV provost and vice president for academic affairs.

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.

Ken Cooke 361-570-4342