Hope named dean of graduate education

· 3 min read

Hope named dean of graduate education

Debra Hope mugshot
Nebraska's Debra Hope has been named the university's next associate vice chancellor and dean of graduate education. She has served the university in a variety of roles for 31 years.

Debra Hope has been appointed associate vice chancellor and dean of graduate education at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

The appointment, announced Aug. 19 by Elizabeth Spiller, executive vice chancellor, is pending final approval by the University of Nebraska Board of Regents. Hope will assume the new post on Sept. 1.

Hope, Aaron Douglas Professor of psychology, is a nationally-recognized expert in the assessment and treatment of anxiety disorders, particularly social anxiety. She joined the University of Nebraska–Lincoln in 1990 as an assistant professor with a doctorate from the University at Albany-State University of New York.

Hope has more than 130 peer-reviewed articles, book chapters, books and other publications. She recently co-founded Trans Collaborations and has been the primary lead on funded research on improving behavioral health care for transgender and gender diverse adults.

She has received numerous awards for her teaching and work on inclusive excellence, most recently the College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Award for Excellence in Graduate Education in 2016; the Chancellor’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Fulfilling the Dream Award in 2016; and the College of Arts and Sciences Award for Outstanding Teaching in 2010 for both her graduate and undergraduate teaching.

Hope has a long history of leadership and significant service. She served for 13 years as graduate chair in psychology, presiding over a large and diverse program which has approximately 100 graduate students in residence and 32 graduate faculty. She was the chair of the Chancellor’s Commission on the Status of Women and co-chair of the College of Arts and Sciences’ Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access Committee. She has also served her profession’s national organization, as president of the Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies.

“Professor Hope is a deeply engaged and collaborative thinker with a strong commitment to making high-quality graduate education accessible and to supporting the success of our graduate and professional students, even as we expand the academic reach and profile of the university,” Spiller said.

As associate vice chancellor and dean of graduate education, Hope will serve as the chief academic and administrative officer for graduate education. Reporting to the executive vice chancellor, she will work to establish a strategic vision for graduate education that strengthens the quality of the university’s graduate and professional programs and supports the departments and faculty in the development of graduate offerings in ways that advance N2025 goals. She will oversee the Office of Graduate Studies, which provides central support for graduate student recruitment, admissions, enrollment, assistantships and fellowships, retention and degree completion, and professional development for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.

“I’m excited about the future opportunities for graduate education and continuing the momentum of innovation and student success,” Hope said. “I am also thrilled to work closely with Executive Vice Chancellor Spiller; the community of faculty, staff and students who are engaged in graduate education; and with the people I have gotten to know in the Office of Graduate Studies over the years, who truly embody the theme every person and every interaction matters.”

Hope earned her Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Lewis and Clark College in Oregon and her Master of Arts and doctorate in clinical psychology from University at Albany-State University of New York. She uses she/her/hers pronouns.

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