Dr. Elizabeth Evans

ITTA BENA, MS – Mississippi Valley State University President Dr. Jerryl Briggs has announced Dr. Elizabeth Evans as the Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs, according to a press release by the university. Her appointment comes after the sudden death of Dr. Constance Bland, who was the current Vice President of Academic Affairs. Dr. Bland passed away on October 9.

In this role, Evans will as the institution’s chief academic officer, overseeing the Office of Academic Affairs. As a member of the institution’s Executive and Extended Cabinets. She was also play an integral role in the overall management of the institution.

“Dr. Evans has had a remarkable career, both in the United States Air Force and here at Mississippi Valley State University,” said Briggs. “She is extremely committed to our students and university’s success, and I look forward to her continuing to more our academic mission forward.”

Evans, who most recently served as the associate vice president of academic affairs, said she is humbled by the opportunity to serve.

“My experience in the military and the field of education have converged to prepare me for this executive administrative position. I embrace the opportunity and welcome supportive ideas,” she said.

A 1975 graduate of Genty High School in Indianola, Miss. Evans earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Mississippi Valley State University, where she was commissioned as a Distinguished Graduate of the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) program (1979).

She is a 24-year veteran of the United States Air Force, where she spent the first 20 years of that time in the “Space Operations” career field working with satellites and their role in the defense of the United States of America. The remaining four years were spent recruiting, educating, training, motivating, and selecting college students for military service.

Her years of active military service and specialized training are foundational pillars for her experience in leading various technical, operational and research/study groups, leading various groups and project, managing organizational budgets, and developing and implementing organizational policies. She tire as a Lieutenant Colonel in November 2003.

Evans joined the Mississippi Valley State University faculty in the fall of 2003, serving in the Social Science Department. Her service included teaching as well as membership in and leadership of various university and departmental committees, academic program coordinator, program internship coordinator, membership in and leadership of the MVSU Faculty, Senate, and acting department chair.

She began serving as associate vice president of academic affairs in Feb. 2017. Her tenure included developing and implementing policies, procedures and practices designed to ensure effective delivery of academic programs at the undergraduate an graduate levels.

Among her responsibilities were planning and supervising the improvement of academic programs and faculty development, collaborating with department chairs and faculty to implement the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP), communicating and advancing the mission and core values of the University by ensuring that Academic Affairs has positioned the University’s academic programs to carry out such, and collaborating with senior leadership in the periodic review of academic programs to monitor the institutions of Higher Learning (IHL) program productivity.

Evans’ primary interest in student achievement. She believes that teaching is more than the giving of information; is it working to ensure learning takes place.

Evans is the mother of two children, Constance Caesar and Lawrence Caesar, and on granddaughter, Caitlyn Caesar.

LITTLE ROCK, AR – This past December, the Board of Trustees of Arkansas Baptist College announced that current president of Arkansas Baptist College, Dr. Joseph L. Jones, has been terminated for caused effective immediately.

Now the the Board of Trustees has named Howard O. Gibson as interim president reported by The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education. The Board hopes to have a permanent new president by July 1.

Since 2015, Dr. Gibson has served as the chief academic officer at the college. Previously he was interim executive assistant to the chancellor at Baton Rouge Community College in Louisiana. Earlier he served as associate vice president for student affairs, enrollment management and diversity at Mississippi Valley State University. From 2009 to 2012, Dr. Gibson was dean of the School of Business at Arkansas Baptist College.

Dr. Gibson holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a concentration in accounting, an MBA, and a Ph.D. in Urban Higher Education, all from Jackson State University in Mississippi.

For more information about Arkansas Baptist College, visit www.arkansasbaptist.edu.