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Charles Wilson Named Interim Dean of College of Arts and Letters

Charles Wilson, vice provost for undergraduate studies and dean of University College at Old Dominion University, has been appointed as interim dean of the College of Arts and Letters, beginning Aug. 10, announced Provost Carol Simpson.

The current dean, Chandra de Silva, who earlier had announced his intention to step down as dean, will return to a faculty position in the Department of History. Simpson announced that de Silva also will assist the Office of Academic Affairs in building emphasis in, and further elevating the stature of, interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary and international programs at the university.

David Metzger, dean of the Honors College, will serve as interim dean of University College.

Wilson, a former chair of the English department who holds the title of University Professor, was appointed vice provost for undergraduate studies in 2008, having served as interim vice provost and as dean of the University College since 2006.

A member of the Old Dominion faculty since 1991, Wilson was an American Council of Education Fellow during the 2005-06 academic year. Known for his passion in the classroom, he was named a State Council of Higher Education for Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award winner in 2004 and has received Old Dominion's A. Rufus Tonelson Faculty Award and the Robert L. Stern Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Wilson is an expert in African American and Southern literatures His research interests include black manhood, race, class and gender in Southern fiction, and the intersection of past and present in the South. He is the recipient of two National Endowment for the Humanities grants, including one for a summer institute at Harvard University.

Wilson received a bachelor's degree in English from West Georgia College, a master's from North Carolina State University and a doctorate from the University of Georgia.

The search for the permanent dean of the College of Arts and Letters will recommence in spring 2011 and a new search committee will be formed, for which de Silva has agreed to serve as chair. Simpson noted that the university will consider engaging the assistance of an external search agency to help identify and recruit exceptional candidates for this important position. A new dean is expected to be named no later than fall 2011.

This article was posted on: April 19, 2010

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