Murray State University announces finalists for Provost position - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Murray State University announces finalists for Provost position

Dennis Rome (Source: Murray State University) Dennis Rome (Source: Murray State University)
Keith Hargrove (Source: Murray State University) Keith Hargrove (Source: Murray State University)
Mark Arant (Source: Murray State University) Mark Arant (Source: Murray State University)
MURRAY, KY (KFVS) -

Murray State University has announced three finalists for the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs position. 

The finalists are Dr. Keith Hargrove, dean of the College of Engineering at Tennessee State University, Dr. Mark Arant, provost and vice president for academic affairs at Northeastern State University and Dr. Dennis Rome, dean of the College of Letters and Sciences at Columbus State University. 

The candidates will be visible around the Murray campus during the next two weeks as they each visit the University.

During the visits, finalists will meet with Murray State University President Bob Davies, University deans and other leaders, faculty, staff and students. Each finalist will participate in a public forum open to the entire University community. 

Following a national search, the finalists were selected by a search committee.

Dr. Keith Hargrove has served as the dean of the College of Engineering at Tennessee State University since 2009. While at Tennessee State, the College increased enrollment by 25% during a six-year period and increased the FE-Exam pass rate from 14% to 80% in three years.

He coordinated ABET accreditation for four engineering programs and obtained the College’s first ABET accreditation for the Department of Computer Science. He also led the College’s strategic planning process and secured research funding totaling more than $10 million. 

Hargrove was previously the department chair and associate professor in the College’s Department of Industrials Manufacturing and Information Engineering, and has held positions at Harford Community College and Tuskegee University.

He earned his Ph.D. in industrial and manufacturing engineering at the University of Iowa, his master’s degree in engineering at Missouri University of Science & Technology and his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering at Tennessee State University. 

Hargrove will be on the Murray State University campus on Tuesday, April 11. 

Dr. Mark Arant has served as the provost and vice president for academic affairs at Northeastern State University since 2014. While in this role, he has led the development of the strategic plan for academic affairs, established new agreements for international exchange programs and created new concurrent enrollment initiatives with area high schools.

He also led the maintenance of the University’s accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission and laid the foundation for a new school of Visual and Performing Arts. 

Arant has held positions at the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith and the University of Louisiana at Monroe. He earned his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Alabama and his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Louisiana Tech University. 

Arant will visit the Murray State University campus on Thursday, April 13. 

Dr. Dennis Rome has served as the dean of the College of Letters and Sciences at Columbus State University since 2014. As the dean, he has focused on enrollment growth at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, including the development of new graduate programs and the creation of a summer retention scholarship.

He has also provided support for unit-level accreditation processes and helped raise more than $3.2 million for experiential learning, student scholarships and professorships.

Rome has held positions at the University of Wisconsin – Parkside, Indiana University Bloomington, DePaul University, Wright State University and Wilmington College.  He earned his Ph.D. in sociology from Washington State University, his master’s degree in sociology from Howard University and his bachelor’s degree in sociology from Bradley University. 

Rome will be on the Murray State University campus on Tuesday, April 18. 

The University’s main campus is located in Murray, Ky. and includes five regional campuses. For more information on Murray State University, please visit murraystate.edu.

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