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Provost Gould Named President of Brooklyn College in New York

Published: July 1, 2009

Karen L. Gould, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at CSULB, has been appointed president of Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. She will begin her new appointment on Aug. 15.

Gould, who will be the college’s first female president, was selected from a candidate pool that City University of New York (CUNY) Chancellor Matthew Goldstein described as among the highest quality in CUNY’s history.

“Dr. Gould’s appointment is a marvelous stroke of good fortune for both Brooklyn College and The City University,” CUNY Chairperson Benno Schmidt and Chancellor Goldstein said in a joint statement. “She brings to this important leadership post extensive academic and administrative experience from five major public higher education institutions, along with an impressive record as a scholar and fundraiser. Dr. Gould will take an outstanding institution to higher levels in the years ahead.”

Gould has served as the chief academic officer at CSULB since March 2007. During her tenure she established a number of initiatives aimed at enhancing student success, including mandatory freshman advising, student mentor programs, expanded First Year Experience programs, and retention initiatives for at-risk students. She increased support for faculty and student research, scholarly, and creative activity, expanded opportunities for students to study abroad, modernized the university’s academic technology infrastructure, promoted diversity and collaborative governance and fostered greater communication throughout the Division of Academic Affairs and the university.

“As a campus, we have benefitted from Provost Gould’s leadership and experience during her two and one-half years at CSULB,” President F. King Alexander stated in an e-mail to CSULB faculty and staff. “Provost Gould’s efforts on our behalf are greatly appreciated. We wish her the best in her new role in New York.”

“It has been a privilege to serve as provost at CSULB and to work alongside so many talented and dedicated people,” Gould said. “I will greatly miss the students, faculty, staff and administrators who together make CSULB such a dynamic institution.”

Established in 1930, Brooklyn College is an innovative liberal arts institution with a history of academic excellence in both undergraduate and graduate studies. It has 13,000 undergraduates enrolled in more than 70 programs and 3,700 graduate students in more than 60 graduate programs and seven doctoral programs.

Brooklyn College faculty members have a strong record of scholarship and research and have won numerous Pulitzer, Guggenheim and Fulbright awards. Its distinguished alumni include Sen. Barbara Boxer, film and television star Jimmy Smits, lawyer Alan M. Dershowitz, former chief executive officer of New Line Cinema Michael Lynne and novelist Frank McCourt.

Karen Gould
Photo by Victoria Sanchez
Karen L. Gould

As president, Gould will be responsible for a budget of $102 million funded by the State of New York and student tuition. She will oversee the major capital construction and renovation program currently underway, which includes a student services building, performing arts center, and ambitious science complex, financed by more than $500 million in public and private funds. A student residence with a community partner is also under construction.

“I want to thank Chancellor Goldstein, the CUNY Board of Trustees and the search committee for their confidence in me,” Gould said at the board meeting when she was officially appointed. “I am proud to have been selected to lead the wonderful learning institution that is Brooklyn College and I am more than eager to work with the college community, which has a rich and great tradition. Together we can bring about another decade of wonderful achievements.”

Prior to joining CSULB, Gould was dean of McMicken College of Arts and Sciences, the largest college at the University of Cincinnati (2001-07), and dean of the College of Arts and Letters at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Vir. (1996-2001). She has also held tenured faculty positions and administrative appointments at Bowling Green State University, Virginia Polytechnic University and Bucknell University.

Gould received her B.A., cum laude, from Occidental College in 1970, a diploma from the Sorbonne, and her Ph.D. in Romance Languages from the University of Oregon in 1975.

Gould is the author or co-editor of six books and more than 50 articles and essays on contemporary Quebec literature, francophone women writers, and the modern French novel. She was honored with the Canadian Governor General’s International Award for Canadian Studies in 2003, and the Donner Medal in Canadian Studies in 2005 for her research and professional contributions to the field of Canadian Studies. Gould is the former editor of the interdisciplinary journal, Québec Studies, and has received numerous grants, fellowships, and awards for her research. Active in the profession, she has served as president of the International Council for Canadian Studies, president of the American Association for Canadian Studies in the United States, and as a member of the executive board of the national Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences.

Gould replaces President Christoph M. Kimmich, who is retiring after 10 years of service at Brooklyn College.