Hunter College President Jennifer J. Raab announced today the appointment of Valeda Dent, PhD, to fill a newly redefined position, Acting Vice President for Student Success & Learning Innovation. She will begin in her new role on August 26.
“We’re delighted that Valeda Dent is joining the leadership team at Hunter College, overseeing our many efforts to ensure student success,” said President Raab. “Her education and the remarkably varied roles she has filled professionally make her an excellent fit to return to serve her alma mater. We couldn’t be happier that she is coming home.”
“I am honored and excited to be returning to Hunter College in this brand-new role,” said Dr. Dent. “Hunter College has always been in my educational and professional orbit—first as an undergraduate, then later as a faculty member in the libraries. I understand the journey of the Hunter College student. Born and raised in Queens, I am that student. Now, it is my turn to pay all that Hunter has given me forward by engaging with students, faculty, staff, and administrators to support and grow all of our student success narratives in ways that are traditional, daring, and innovative.”
Among the responsibilities in her new role, Dr. Dent will lead and support strategic initiatives across the college to accomplish Hunter’s ambitious student success goals. She will oversee operational areas of the Scholar Programs, the Honor cohorts, learning centers, student support in the library, and the Office of Prestigious Scholarships. She will also be responsible for directing the operations of the study abroad program and the pre-professional programs.
Prior to joining Hunter, Valeda Dent served at St. John’s University since 2016 as Dean, University Librarian, and Professor, Division of Library and Information Science. She provided administrative and fiscal oversight of the university’s multi-site library, as well as led the development and implementation of university-wide programs to support and advance the academic mission of the university.
Before St. John’s, she held leadership roles in the libraries of Long Island University, Rutgers University, and the University of Michigan, as well as at Hunter College from 2001 to 2007. In addition to her administrative roles, she also taught at all those institutions. Earlier in her career, she also oversaw a multi-site hybrid libraries project for the University of Oxford, King's College London, and the University of Southampton.
Selected as a Fulbright Scholar, Dr. Dent, in 2014, received a faculty and research appointment at Uganda Martyrs University in East Africa, where she served as co-principal investigator for a large-scale research study on rural libraries, literacy acquisition, and young children.
She has written or co-written more than 20 articles published by peer-reviewed journals and three monographs on her international research, as well as a number of book chapters.
In addition to applying for and receiving grant funding in support of her research work, she has also received a number of awards, including most recently a Campus Technology Impact Award for having developed a mobile library app—one of four mobile applications she helped develop in support of college students.
Dr. Dent received her bachelor’s degree in film studies from Hunter College, her MILS and MSW degrees from the University of Michigan, and her PhD in information science from Long Island University.