LSU Shreveport is pleased to announce that Dr. Julie Lessiter, currently interim provost and vice chancellor of academic affairs, will become the new vice chancellor of strategic initiatives (VCSI).
The new position expands the scope of leadership responsibilities of Dr. Lessiter’s former position, vice provost of enrollment management, to now include oversight for Continuing Education and leadership of both the university’s strategic planning process and key strategic initiatives.
In announcing Dr. Lessiter’s new leadership role, Chancellor Larry Clark stated, “Higher education is undergoing change at a flash. LSUS must be highly agile, innovative, entrepreneurial and collaborative in adapting to change to most effectively serve our students and this region. Dr. Julie Lessiter is uniquely qualified to provide this leadership for LSUS.”
Dr. Lessiter will initially provide leadership for the development of the new collaboratory, a major new cyber/high tech student center that will be a catalyst for student collaboration and learning involving cyber security, computer science, applied physics and other STEM applications. Additional initiatives include new student housing, re-purposing the academic wing of the Health & Physical Education Building, and identifying and developing new strategic collaborative opportunities with external partners. Dr. Lessiter will continue to oversee admissions and strategic enrollment processes, including international students.
“My vision is for LSUS to be a strong regional institution that provides a transformative educational experience to those in Northwest Louisiana, coupled with a strong online presence in strategically chosen degree programs that allow students nationwide to improve their lives,” said Dr. Lessiter. “We will also seek to identify ways for LSUS to more strongly collaborate with others to be a major hub in this region, especially in support of youth, education, healthy communities and economic vitality.”
Dr. Lessiter has a long history of successful leadership, most recently at LSUS. Under her leadership in Enrollment Management, she developed the Institution’s first strategic enrollment management plan, and has worked with multiple departments to streamline the admissions process. She successfully guided LSUS through multiple SACSCOC activities, including a level change that represented the institution’s first doctoral degree and the reaffirmation of accreditation.
Prior to LSUS, Dr. Lessiter spent time at Arkansas State University and at Northwestern State University, where she oversaw the development of an impressive student success center for student athletes, developed a quality academic support program, and was a key component of the championship winning teams both on the field and in the classroom.
Dr. Lessiter’s new position will take effect May 1. This decision comes in junction with the announcement of the new Provost and Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs, Dr. Nancy Jordan.