ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Abilene Christian University have announced the addition of three new colleges, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Health and Behavioral Sciences and the College of Science and Engineering.
The new colleges will begin in the Fall semester of 2023 and will become a new home to departments as a part of restructuring to further grow the national reputation of ACU. The College of Arts and Sciences containment of more than half of ACU’s total departments is a large reason for this restructure, according to the press release. The College of Business Administration will also see departmental shifts as the Dukes School of Finance launches later this year as a part of the restructure.
Dr. Robert Rhodes, provost, commentated on how this new shift will affect the college, including the addition of deans and more focus of each area of each college.
“While we’re introducing a new campaign and a new strategic plan, we wanted to take the moment to think about rebranding and bringing together similar areas of study,” said Dr. Robert Rhodes, provost. “This also allows us to bring in deans with more specific expertise and focus in the areas of each college. We’re grateful to be in a position to be launching three new colleges at once based on growth and energy that already exists around many of our programs.
Dr. Greg Straughn, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, will also serve as the dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. A search is underway for deans for the colleges of Health and Behavioral Sciences and Science and Engineering.
“Everyone has different needs, and we wanted to make sure this was a win for all groups,bringing everyone to a point of strength,” Rhodes said “It took a lot of open dialogue – broad conversations and then program-specific conversations. This is our first time to create a new college in 20 years, and we wanted it to be a positive step for each area. Dr. Greg Straughn deserves a ton of credit for that; he shepherded the conversations that led to this final plan.
Rhodes added that the new structure will also benefit the recruiting and retaining of students and allow for more targeted advising and communication.
“We can send consistent and focused messages and present specific groupings of programs to audiences that have been more diffuse in the past,” he said. “And when a student wants to shift majors, they may not have to shift colleges. This will help our academic advising be more focused and consistent as well.
Physical changes for the school will be minimal, with some changes to deans’ office locations and a potential for shared classroom and lab spaces across the colleges. Take a look below to see the new structure of each college at ACU.
College of Humanities and Social Sciences
- Art and Design
- Communication and Sociology
- History and Global Studies
- Journalism and Mass Communication
- Language and Literature
- Liberal Arts
- Political Science and Criminal Justice
- School of Education
College of Biblical Studies
- Bible, Missions and Ministry
- Marriage and Family Studies
- Graduate School of Theology
College of Business Administration
- Dukes School of Finance
- Management Sciences
- School of Information Technology and Computing
College of Health and Behavioral Sciences
- Communication Sciences and Disorders
- Kinesiology and Nutrition
- School of Nursing
- Occupational Therapy
- School of Social Work
College of Science and Engineering
- Agricultural and Environmental Sciences
- Chemistry and Biochemistry
- Engineering and Physics