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Dr. David Starrett, Provost

David Starrett became the first Provost at Columbia College in Columbia, Missouri in summer of 2015. Dave previously served as the Dean of Academic Information Services at Southeast Missouri State University. He was also Director of Kent Library and Director of Institutional and Programmatic Accreditations. In addition, Dave served as the campus Accreditation Liaison Officer to the Higher Learning Commission. In this latter role he led the campus through its very successful reaffirmation of accreditation in the fall of 2012.

In his role as dean and director of the library Dave oversaw a strategic planning process which led to an overhaul of the organizational structure, redefinition of open lines and hiring of new faculty and staff and the move of the library to significantly greater delivery of services and resources in electronic formats. In his 15-year role as Director of the Center for Scholarship in Teaching and Learning (CSTL), Dave oversaw numerous initiatives on improving the quality of teaching and learning at Southeast. This included development of the very successful Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Fellows Program and a significant refocus on instructional delivery methods utilizing the NCAT model of Course Redesign and the development of blended and webinar delivered courses to supplement face-to-face and online delivery of instruction. He also led the initiative to develop and assess student learning outcomes to meet external and internal demands for assessment of student learning.

After finishing his post-doctoral work at the USDA in 1995, Dave went to Southeast Missouri State as an Assistant Professor in the department of Biology. He moved into the role of Director of the CSTL in 1999 as a result of his strong involvement of the use of instructional technology to enhance the teaching/learning environment. In this role he established and led the Office of Instructional Technology (OIT) within the CSTL to meet the increasing support needs of faculty using instructional technology as well as to support the development of an online program. In 2004 he assumed the role of Dean of the School of University Studies overseeing the CSTL, the Writing Center, Collaborative Advising program and center for exploratory students, Honors Program and Testing Services. He also established the office of Southeast Online Programs as an independent unit from the OIT to manage the fast growing focus on delivery of online courses, programs, certificates and degrees. Dave hired new heads of all of these units reporting to him.

Dave took on the additional role of Director of the First-year Seminar program in 2010. This role and that of Dean of University Studies were moved under another college in 2012 to allow Dave to focus on the Higher Learning Commission accelerated campus visit and reaffirmation of accreditation process in 2012. Dave has taught undergraduate, graduate, honors, online and blended courses. Dave has experience in obtaining grants and fund raising in his roles as a biologist, faculty developer and library dean/director, being involved in nearly $4 million in grants and gifts during his tenure at Southeast.

Dave has served as a member of the Educause Advisory Committee on Teaching and Learning, a member of the Executive Council of the Association of General and Liberal Studies, Executive Director of the Council for Administration of General and Liberal Studies and is a member of Phi Kappa Phi and a Senior Associate with the Teaching Learning and Technology Group (TLT Group). Dave serves as a Senior Council Member on the Educause Senior IT Leadership Roundtable as well as serving on the IT Issues panel.

Dave earned an A.A. degree from El Camino Community College in Southern California in 1981, a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Biology from the University of Southern California in 1984, a Masters of Arts from the University of California Los Angeles in 1986, and a Ph.D. from UCLA in 1992. Dave did post-doctoral work with the United States Department of Agriculture in Beltsville, Maryland from 1992-1995. Married with two sons in college, Dave is an avid birder with an appreciation for the outdoors and natural environment. With humor being one of the key tools of his management style, Dave has been known to tell new colleagues that his “field” is plant biology and that he will “grow” on them.


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