CMU's Global Campus VP named to head Empire State College

Vice President of Central Michigan University's Global Campus Operations Merodie Hancock is expected to be the next president of Empire State College in New York.

SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher announced that she would be recommending Hancock for the position, according to a Thursday news release.

“I’m honored that Chancellor Zimpher is making this recommendation to the SUNY Board of Trustees,” Hancock said in the release. “Empire State College, like CMU’s Global Campus, is dedicated to nontraditional and innovative student learning. I believe this recommendation reflects the prominence CMU’s Global Campus has established in delivering rigorous academic programs and, perhaps more appropriately, our 70,000 successful alumni making a difference around the globe.”

Empire State College is an extension of the State University of New York, which was founded in 1971 as an institution focused on nontraditional learning and teaching, according to the ESC website. College faculty mentors guide ESC students through designing their own degree programs.

Hancock was named a semifinalist for the position in late February along with Fred Hurst, senior vice president for extended campuses at Northern Arizona University, former Empire State College Provost Meg Benke, David Schejbal, dean of continuing education, outreach and e-learning for the University of Wisconsin Extension and Upper Iowa University President Alan Walker.

Hancock has served as vice president of CMU's Global Campus operations since 2007.

As VP of Global Campus, Hancock has seen enrollment in CMU's off-campus programs rise significantly. As previously reported by Central Michigan Life, Global Campus undergraduate enrollment increased by 13 percent from fall 2011 to fall 2012, from 2,341 students to 2,642 students. While graduate enrollment declined by roughly 4 percent during that time period, total enrollment increased by 1.4 percent to 7,189 students.

“I would like to extend my congratulations to Hancock on this tremendous opportunity with Empire State College and express my appreciation for all she has done for CMU over the past six years,” Provost Gary Shapiro said in the release. “Her leadership has resulted in major improvements working with on-campus faculty and deans while expanding CMU’s prominence in online education.”

CMU's Global Campus reaches more than 50 locations throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico, as well as offering online classes globally.

A national search for a replacement for Hancock has not yet begun.

Hancock was not available for comment in time for publication.