On Jan. 11, the Office of the President informed the student body that Sujata Moorti, vice president for academic affairs (VPAA) and dean of faculty will be stepping down from these positions this month. The email from President Laurie Patton cited “urgent personal reasons” as the reason for the change. To fill the position, there will be an accelerated internal search for a new VPAA led by the Faculty Council, Patton wrote. In the meantime, Jim Ralph, dean for faculty development and research and professor of American history and culture, will serve as an interim VPAA and Dean of Faculty. When the new VPAA is hired, Ralph will continue serving as Dean of Faculty through the 2023–24 school year.
Moorti, who is also a professor in the Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies Department, has served as VPAA and dean of faculty since July 2019. Patton expressed her appreciation for Moorti’s work in her campus-wide email.
“She and her team helped faculty successfully launch a curriculum in each of the pandemic years, and created resources and support structures for faculty to mount their courses in extremely difficult circumstances,” Patton wrote.
Patton also cited Moorti’s work in developing project-based learning strategies in her collaborations with the Axinn Center for Humanities Public Humanities Labs, the Center for Teaching, Learning and Research (CTLR), the Middlebury College Museum of Art and the Center for Community Engagement (CCE). Patton also commended Moorti’s work in developing Midd.data, the Black Studies program and the Afghan scholars program.
Lily Jones ’23 is an online editor and senior writer.
She previously served as a Senior News Writer and SGA Correspondent.
Jones is double majoring in Philosophy and Political Science. She also is an intern for the Rohatyn Center for Global Affairs and on the ultimate frisbee team.