UMF President Kathryn A. Foster to bring legacy of scholarship, education, and higher education policy and institutional leadership to The College of New Jersey
UMS Chancellor lauds President Foster’s accomplishments and service while announcing plans
to engage in leadership transition discussion with campus and community leaders
FARMINGTON, MAINE — University of Maine System Chancellor James H. Page announced today that University of Maine at Farmington President Kathryn A. “Kate” Foster has accepted an appointment to serve as the next president of The College of New Jersey (TCNJ), a nationally recognized, highly-selective public institution of approximately 7,400 students located in Ewing Township, New Jersey. President Foster, a native New Jerseyan, was selected to lead TCNJ as part of a national search that produced a highly qualified field of 80 candidates.
An announcement event was held at the New Jersey campus earlier today, Tuesday, March 27, 2018. Dr. Foster assumes her new position on July 1, 2018.
Institutional Accomplishments and Service to Maine and its Students
Dr. Foster became UMF’s 14th president upon her appointment in 2012 providing strong institutional leadership that has helped position the University of Maine at Farmington as one of the Northeast’s best public liberal arts colleges. Institutional advancements under President Foster’s leadership include enrollment stabilization, improvements in student success, ten-year accreditation, and the alignment of plans for programming and investment with university strategic, master, recruitment and retention, advancement and marketing plans. Focused attention on facilities and future needs during President Foster’s tenure have resulted in a refurbished gymnasium, improved classroom and student spaces, upgraded residence halls, the construction of a central biomass heat plant that reduces dependency on fossil fuels, and permanent use of athletic fields for university and community use.
President Foster has also provided valued leadership in the University of Maine System’s work to set a new strategic course for public higher education in the state as a member of Presidents’ Council and by leading committees that worked on academic integration across the campuses and small campus advancement. President Foster’s strategic leadership and advocacy for public higher education led to an appointment to the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC).
“President Foster is a dynamic and extraordinarily talented higher education leader and advocate,” said James H. Page, Chancellor of the University of Maine System. “The University of Maine at Farmington is a stronger institution, better positioned for success and service to Maine and its students because of Kate’s inspired guidance. The Board of Trustees and I are grateful for the time she has spent with us as a colleague and a friend. We thank Dr. Foster for her service and wish her and The College of New Jersey every success.”
President Foster’s leadership and commitment to service extended beyond campus borders and into the community and surrounding region where the University of Maine at Farmington has set the highest standard for institutional partnership and engagement. In addition to energizing the university’s Board of Visitors, Dr. Foster has served on the Boards of the Greater Franklin Development Corporation and JMG (formerly Jobs for Maine’s Graduates). In 2016 she was named by maine magazine as one of the “50 People Charting the Future of Maine.”
“We have been so fortunate to have Kate Foster leading our campus and serving our community these last six years,” said Lisa Laflin, Chair of the UMF Board of Visitors and Executive Director of the United Way of the Tri-Valley Area. “We have built stronger partnerships and made important progress on our aspirations for the region and its future by working with President Foster and her team at UMF. Kate will always have grateful friends and a strong legacy of leadership in Farmington and throughout western Maine.”
President Foster will continue to serve as UMF’s leader through June 30, 2018. In a message sent earlier in the day to members of the extended UMF campus community, President Foster expressed her deep gratitude for the exceptional support and camaraderie she has enjoyed in Farmington since 2012. Referencing her roots, she added, “Many would understand the strong tug to new opportunity, but Mainers especially will appreciate the powerful pull to home.”
Chancellor to Engage Campus and Community in Leadership Discussion
University of Maine System Chancellor James Page will immediately begin discussing leadership needs at the University of Maine at Farmington with campus and community stakeholders. These discussions will include a campus visit currently scheduled for April 4, 2018. A plan for transitional leadership will be developed based on stakeholder input and an assessment of institutional needs and opportunities. The plan is expected to be announced before the end of the current semester.