James C. White II, Ph.D., Named Southern Vermont College Provost

June 24, 2015

Southern Vermont College (SVC) is pleased to announce the appointment of James C. White II, Ph.D., as the College’s new Provost, starting July 1. The Provost will provide leadership in the areas of curriculum, academic personnel and faculty affairs, as well as strategic planning and new programs. President David Evans made the announcement following a Provost search which yielded many strong candidates.

“We are very excited to welcome Jay White to our College,” said President Evans. “He brings a great deal of experience in academic planning and management, accreditation, program development, and fundraising to SVC, and we are fortunate to have him. As both a professor and a leader, White has a focused, thoughtful style.”

White, who will also hold a faculty appointment as Professor of Physics at SVC, has worked in higher education for more than two decades. At Washington & Jefferson College and at Gettysburg College he served as the institution’s chief academic officer. Prior to that, he was Chairperson of the Department of Physics and the J. Lester Crain Professor of Physics at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee. Before that, he was an assistant and then associate professor of physics at Middle Tennessee State University.

“Southern Vermont College is an important liberal arts institution that is progressive in its attention to career and profession,” stated White. “I am thrilled to have an opportunity to work with President Evans, the faculty and staff to advance the College’s mission.”

An astrophysicist by training, White is a Fellow of Great Britain’s Royal Astronomical Society and an American member of the International Astronomical Union. He is the past editor of “Mercury,” the magazine of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, and a former Executive Director of that international organization. In addition to his astronomical research, White has been active in international scientific development since 1992, serving on the American Physical Society’s U.S.-Africa Task Force, the American Institute of Physics’ Public Information Advisory Committee and as director of the International Astronomical Union’s program for the improvement of scientific and educational infrastructure in developing countries.

White is the author of numerous professional publications and articles and has lectured on  astronomy and science in venues from Hanoi to Reykjavik to Auckland. He has led solar-eclipse and other science-related tours around the globe and has contributed his expertise in astronomy and international science to publications as diverse as the “New York Times” and “Sky & Telescope.” In the past, he was author of the regular feature “Sky Almanac” in “Country” magazine; creator and writer of “Science Matters,” a weekly science column syndicated by the “New York Times” television syndicate; and a guest on radio and television programs around North America.