Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences Claudine Gay announced the launch of a search for the next dean of the Division of Continuing Education in an email to FAS faculty members Monday.
Current DCE Dean Huntington D. Lambert, who has held the position since 2013, announced his plans to retire at the end of the calendar year earlier this semester. While the search for a new dean is conducted, DCE associate dean and chief innovation officer Henry H. Leitner will serve as interim dean, Gay wrote.
The DCE encompasses Harvard Extension School and its Summer School, as well as a variety of other academic enrichment programs. In her email, Gay discussed the role of the DCE dean in advancing the mission of FAS.
“The dean of the DCE oversees a powerful global education platform and the primary outreach arm for the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS), serving more than 30,000 part-time learners across the globe each year,” Gay wrote. “With a deep commitment to academic excellence and expanding opportunities for learning and educational innovation, the dean of DCE leads the division in its mission to extend Harvard to part-time and summer learners with the academic ability, curiosity, and drive to succeed in rigorous courses and programs.”
In the email, Gay announced the committee that would lead the search for Lambert’s successor and thanked him for his work as dean.
“His boundless energy and passion for students at every stage of learning has made Harvard stronger and better,” she wrote.
Gay will lead the search committee. University professor Gary King, Philosophy professor Alison Simmons, and Statistics professor Joseph K. Blitzstein will also serve on the committee, along with Dean of Administration and Finance for the FAS Leslie A. Kirwan ’79, Vice Provost for Advances in Learning Bharat N. Anand ‘88, and Vice President and Chief Information Officer Anne H. Margulies.
In a November interview, Lambert highlighted three areas on which he believes his successor should focus — ensuring the DCE represents Harvard well, providing lifelong learning opportunities, and innovating its infrastructure to maintain accessibility.
“We serve a very different student at Harvard. We serve this adult part-time learner, and we serve the summer learners. Those are learners that no other school at Harvard serves, but we're still Harvard,” Lambert said. “What does that mean in terms of the rigor of the courses, the academic discipline on anything we put credit on?”
“This person needs to be Harvard, be the best we can be for our adult part-time and summer learners, and build the information systems that let us do it cost-effectively,” he added.
—Staff writer Lucy Liu can be reached at email@example.com.