The University of Utah announced that Elaine Clark, professor of educational psychology at the U, has accepted the appointment as the new dean of the College of Education. For a seamless transition, Clark will begin July 1 as the current dean, María Fránquiz, moves to her new position as deputy chief academic officer for Faculty Development and Innovation.

“I am honored to have this unique opportunity to work with the outstanding faculty and staff in the college,” said Clark. “The College of Education is a significant contributor to ensuring that all children with varied backgrounds, needs and abilities have access to a high-quality education, including one that provides effective academic, social, emotional and mental health supports.”

Clark has been a member of the faculty in the Department of Educational Psychology since 1983. She served as the director of the school psychology program for 21 years and department chair for six. She has dedicated her career to the development of applied research and the preparation of school psychologists to provide effective services to individuals who have significant social, emotional and learning challenges, in particular, those with an autism spectrum disorder.

“I am delighted that Elaine will serve as the next dean of the College of Education,” said Ruth V. Watkins, senior vice president of academic affairs. “She is a longtime member of the U community and has served in numerous leadership roles. She is well-known nationally for her research and service in professional organizations.”

Clark has served as the president of the Society for the Study of School Psychology and is a member of the American Psychological Association Board of Professional Affairs. She has also served in offices within the state, including the Utah Association of School Psychologists and Utah Psychological Association.

The College of Education creates a learning environment that fosters discovery and dissemination of knowledge to promote learning, equitable access and enhanced- learning outcomes for all students. The college prepares practitioners and scholars through cutting-edge research and practice, by leading innovation and collaboration and by promoting a culture of theory and data-informed inquiry and action.

“The college continues to build strong relationships across campus and within our community. In their roles as teachers, researchers and individuals committed to community engagement, our faculty shape the future of education in the state and beyond to improve student success and lifelong possibilities,” added Clark.

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