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Matthew Poslusny teaching in a class.

Poslusny Reflects on Role as Meredith’s First Provost

By Melyssa Allen

Poslusny Reflects on Role as Meredith’s First Provost

By Melyssa Allen

In 2013, Matthew Poslusny was named provost and senior vice president at Meredith, becoming the first person to serve in this role in the College’s history. After 11 years, he is leaving the provost position and returning more fully to the classroom.

“There is truly a different atmosphere at Meredith. The faculty’s dedication to our students is really wonderful to see, and it makes Meredith a wonderful place to be,” Poslusny said. “I knew early on I wanted this to be my last academic home.”

As Meredith’s chief academic officer, the provost is charged with overseeing all academic areas, including academic programs, library, study abroad, academic advising, Honors, undergraduate research, and more. For most of his time at Meredith, Poslusny was also responsible for enrollment functions.

Among the things Poslusny is proud of during his tenure as provost are the addition of new academic programs, including a nursing program that was recently approved by the Board of Trustees, growth in Meredith’s graduate degree offerings, and raising retention rates to above 80%. He is also proud of building partnerships with the faculty, including the deans, department heads, and faculty council chairs with whom he has worked.

“I tried hard to create good, collegial working relationships with the faculty, and tried to have that be a partnership,” he said. “I always thought of myself as a member of the faculty. I hope I created a culture that supported a smooth working relationship between the provost and faculty.”

Some of the tasks of a provost might be surprising. At Meredith, those included reading graduate names at commencement ceremonies and making inclement weather closing and delay decisions. Having come from the Northeast, Poslusny said he had to recalibrate his understanding of the impact of winter weather and hurricanes on a campus in North Carolina. He humorously mentioned that one of the things he most looks forward to is being able to sleep late if it snows. 

More seriously, he looks forward to being a Meredith faculty member. “I hope I can do justice to the rest of the faculty when I am in the classroom. I want to make an impact on individual students by being able to mentor students again,” Poslunsy said. “I want to occupy my thoughts with determining the most effective way to help students grasp a concept. I get great satisfaction from that.” 

Calling himself “an outsider” when he started at Meredith, Poslusny now has family ties to the College. His wife, Annie, is a 2019 graduate after earning a second degree in art history as a Wings student, and his daughter-in-law is also an alumna. Annie Poslusny, who also earned a master’s degree from UNC-Chapel Hill, is an adjunct instructor of art history at Meredith.

“I’ve now been able to see how Meredith is experienced as a Wings student, a traditional student, and as an adjunct faculty member through them,” Poslusny said. “I’m looking forward to whatever else I can do to help Meredith in a different role.”

Prior to joining Meredith’s administration, Poslusny served as the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and the Common Student Experience at Widener University. His previous experience includes several years as chair of the Marist College chemistry department and the University of Charleston (W.Va.) Maier endowed chair of environmental science. His work has been published in both higher education and scientific journals. Poslusny holds a Ph.D. in analytical chemistry from the University of North Texas.

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