The College of Humanities and Social Sciences Welcomes Dean Ann Ardis

by Anne Reynolds

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences Welcomes Dean Ann Ardis

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences is pleased to welcome its new Dean, Ann Ardis.

Ardis comes to Mason from the University of Delaware, where she has been serving as senior vice provost for graduate and professional education since February, 2016. Prior to that role, she was the deputy dean of Delaware’s College of Arts & Sciences. She is the founding director of the Interdisciplinary Humanities Research Center at the University of Delaware, which supports collaborative multidisciplinary research, teaching, and creative activity anchored in the humanities.

As a member of the UD faculty since 1989, when she joined the English department, Ardis’s research has focused on turn-of-the-century British literature and culture, modernist studies, and the metamorphosis of print culture. She recently completed a term of service as co-editor of Modernism/modernity, the official journal of the Modernist Studies Association (Johns Hopkins University Press). She received her bachelor’s degree in English (with honors) and political science from the University of Kansas, and earned her master’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Virginia.

Ardis’s selection is the result of a nation-wide search led by Mason Provost S. David Wu and College of Visual and Performing Arts Dean Rick Davis, with the assistance of a search committee comprising College of Humanities and Social Sciences faculty and staff. During the search, the college has moved forward under the leadership of Interim Dean Robert Matz and Interim Senior Associate Dean Shannon Davis.

“The more I learn about Mason, the more excited I am about being part of what’s going on at a university that is on the move and clearly values its faculty accomplishments and opportunities for students,” Ardis said. “The challenge of this moment is making sure the infrastructure is in place to support faculty research and ensuring the continuation of what is a very genuine commitment to serving a diverse student population.”

Speaking to the college’s faculty and staff, she emphasized the importance of continuing conversation on “academic freedom, intellectual debate — civil intellectual debate — and what we can do as faculty to model that for graduate students, undergraduate students, and the community.”

She added, “That’s a big responsibility, I think, of this college in particular, but I know you’re up for it. I look forward to working with you.”