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About the Academic Affairs Office


The Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs is located in 309 University Hall, just west of Providence Road on Stadium Boulevard.


Mission of the Office

The mission of the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs is to serve as a catalyst for change that promotes quality of and provides access to academic programs in an effective and efficient manner. This mission can be achieved by providing leadership in the improvement of teaching and learning in collaboration with the office of human resources, supporting research and scholarship, and promoting cooperative initiatives that enable the Universities to accomplish their mutual goals.

According to Section 20.030 of the Collected Rules and Regulations, the vice president for academic affairs provides support and advice to the president on the fulfillment of the academic mission of the University related to student learning and success, academic planning and programming. The vice president for academic affairs has responsibility for the University of Missouri Press, Western Historical Manuscripts Collection, and other specific responsibilities assigned by the President. (Research and economic development now falls under the vice president for research and economic development.)

In addition, the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs advises and provides leadership and service to the UM Board of Curators, the President, and University chancellors in formulating, interpreting and implementing policies related to academic affairs.


Responsibilities of the Office

Dynamic, competitive, forward-thinking statewide academic leadership

A primary role of the UM System academic affairs office is to analyze major trends in the environment that have an impact on higher education nationally and regionally. Anticipating and understanding national and global trends, demographic projections, public attitudes about higher education, and the implications of technology will give the university a competitive advantage. Academic affairs serves as the point of contact for the UM System office on critical statewide academic issues through advocacy, issues management, collaboration and accountability efforts.

Leveraging UM strengths and opportunities across campuses by promoting collaboration, cooperation and best practices

Another role of the system’s academic affairs office is to serve as the liaison with campus leadership to maximize quality teaching and research and enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of academic programs. This is achieved by benchmarking research and enhancing scholarly productivity against a competitive cohort of schools. When appropriate, this also means building consensus on broad policy issues and creating a sense of common vision for the four universities. Cooperative degree programs maximize campus assets across the system and increase student opportunity.

Reviewing new programs for quality, viability and marketability ensures the programs meet university strategic goals and have a reasonable chance of succeeding when launched. Promoting campus efforts in international programs are strengthened through collaboration and strategic coordination (e.g. South Africa Program). A unified UM engagement in P-20 pipeline efforts leverages university resources to address a critical statewide and national need. Similarly, the University of Missouri System’s e-learning initiative requires centralized leadership to leverage the collective resources of the four universities. Lastly, finding a systemwide solution for common problems and modifying the UM Collected Rules ensures that larger issues are addressed and a single policy is developed across all four universities (e.g. non-tenure track faculty; faculty grievances, etc.)

Strategic academic leadership—fostering faculty and student success

This includes setting the direction for large-scale academic issues such as student access, success and affordability; faculty recruitment and retention; fostering faculty scholarly productivity in research and teaching; and creating an environment and culture that promotes creativity, innovation, and scholarly excellence—for students and for faculty. The office draws on institutional research, which allows the university to address systemwide issues such as faculty performance, student retention, coherent financial aid and tuition policies, campus accountability measures from a “benchmarked” perspective and contextual analysis that helps the university tell its story to the public. The office also collaborates with HR to address faculty personnel issues and promote close working relationships with campus provosts’ offices (e.g. leadership development programs, new academic talent management efforts.) In addition, system academic affairs engages the Intercampus Faculty Council in its role in shared governance to promote coordinated efforts and allow the faculty to address concerns and take action on policy matters when appropriate.


Staff Directory

Steve Graham

Steven W. Graham, Ph.D.

Senior Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs

(573) 882-3119


Jill H. Wood, Ph.D.

Director, Academic Affairs


Stephen Chaffin Carrie Nicholson  

Steven Chaffin

Research Consultant I

Carrie Nicholson

Director, Program Operations


Lauren Reedy

Lauren Reedy

Program/Project Support Coordinator II



Student Support

Robina Onwong'a
Claire Shipp

Robina Onwong'a

Graduate Research Assistant

Claire Shipp

Undergraduate Student Assistant




Additional Units

In addition to the central administrative office, two additional units make up and forward the mission of Academic Affairs. These include the The Brady and Anne Deaton Institute for University Leadership in International Development and the Western Historical Manuscript Collection.

The Brady and Anne Deaton Institute for University Leadership in International Development

The Brady and Anne Deaton Institute for University Leadership in International Development supports and develops interdisciplinary research and applied programs focused on the food security and socioeconomic needs of developing countries with the aim of eliminating extreme poverty. The institute utilizes the strength of the University of Missouri’s global relationships and exceptional Extension abilities.

For additional information, visit the Deaton Institute webpage.

The Western Historical Manuscript Collection

The University of Missouri created the Western Historical Manuscript Collection in 1943 with the mission to collect, preserve, and make available to prospective users records that illuminate the history of Missouri and the broader region to which it belongs. With the expansion of the University into a four-campus system, and in keeping with the scholarly ideal of sharing all existing records with those who may be interested, the Columbia, Kansas City, Rolla and St. Louis campuses have joined in the cooperative effort with the State historical Society to make the Western Historical Manuscript Collection a truly statewide resource readily available to faculties, students, visiting scholars, and citizens.


Gary Kremer

Gary Kremer

Unit Director

(573) 882-7083



Reviewed 2021-01-04