HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The following is a news release from The University of Southern Mississippi
Dr. Casey Maugh Funderburk has been named The University of Southern Mississippi's Interim Associate Provost for Gulf Park, effective August 1. The appointment follows Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Steven Moser's decision to suspend the position's original search process until a permanent provost is named.
In this position, Maugh Funderburk will provide support to the academic deans and associate deans in the delivery of programs and courses on the Gulf Park Campus. She will also work with University officers in Hattiesburg and along the Gulf Coast to implement University-wide academic success and engagement initiatives tailored to Gulf Park students; mentor faculty to ensure ongoing quality in teaching, research and service; and coordinate on-site operational and facility needs with Dr. Steve Miller, the University's Vice President for the Gulf Park Campus.
"This interim appointment will be critical in allowing us to address top priorities and opportunities regarding our coastal operations without delay," said Moser. "Dr. Maugh Funderburk is known for her student-centered approach and has the experience necessary to make a strong impact during this transitional period in academic affairs. She possesses the skills to collaborate closely with faculty and staff as we continue to expand program offerings and services to our coastal teaching sites, and I am pleased that she has agreed to serve in this role."
Maugh Funderburk joined the University's faculty in 2008 as Assistant Professor of Communication Studies and Director of the Gulf Coast Speaking Center, where she expanded and enhanced tutoring services and spearheaded the development of the Gulf Coast Learning Commons.
In 2014, she was appointed Associate Chair of Interdisciplinary Studies, where she increased the number of majors on the Gulf Park Campus from just four to 45 in her first six months in the position. She has also served as the Gulf Coast Faculty Council President and a member of both the University's Strategic Planning Council and Student Success Implementation Team.
"I am pleased that Dr. Moser has taken the lead in moving the University closer to filling this position, which will provide critical support and leadership in our efforts to meet the needs of coastal residents through high quality education and research programs," said University President Rodney D. Bennett. "I look forward to the positive impact that will result from this appointment as we continue to grow our coastal operations."
Maugh Funderburk earned her Ph.D. in Communication Arts and Sciences from The Pennsylvania State University and holds a master's degree in Speech Communication from Colorado State University and a bachelor's degree in Communications Studies from Huntingdon College in Montgomery, Ala.
"I believe deeply in continuing the good work happening on the University's Gulf Park Campus through my commitment to student success and its connection to academic units on our coastal campus," Maugh Funderburk said. "Having a liaison to the Office of the Provost on the Gulf Park Campus will provide further opportunities for growth and academic decision-making."
The University is currently engaged in a national search to identify USM's next Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, with the goal of having a new provost in place early next year. Once named, the successful candidate will be charged with determining a process and timeline for filling this associate provost position on a permanent basis.