Dr. Kevin M. Ross became the fifth president of Lynn University on July 1, 2006. He succeeded his father, Dr. Donald E. Ross who founded Wilmington College, Wilmington, Del. in 1967 before becoming Lynn's president at the age of 32. During his 35 years as president, he led the school from a two-year Catholic women’s college on the brink of bankruptcy to a thriving university with a distinct international character.
Like his father, Dr. Kevin Ross took leadership of the university at a young age: 33, having held numerous administrative positions in educational institutions, including Lynn. Early in his career, Dr. Ross served as admissions officer and associate director of admissions at two independent schools, The Hill School (Pottstown, Pa.) and Avon Old Farms School (Avon, Conn.). His first higher education post was assistant to the president of Wilmington College (Wilmington, Del.).
Dr. Ross came to Lynn in 1999 as associate dean of the Eugene M. and Christine E. Lynn College of International Communication, where he facilitated installation of its state-of-the-art broadcast journalism curriculum, studios and equipment.
Dr. Ross also served as director of special projects, director of development and vice president of institutional advancement before being named chief operating officer (COO) in 2004.
As COO, Dr. Ross initiated and oversaw completion of Lynn's long-range strategic plan with the aid of the late Dr. George Keller, noted higher education strategic planning expert and author of Academic Strategy: The Management Revolution in American Higher Education. The long-range plan, titled Lynn 2020, provides a blueprint for developing Lynn University over 15 years. Six years into Dr. Ross’ presidency—and as the university celebrates its 50th year—many of the plan’s major initiatives have come, or are well on their way, to fruition (see “Key Achievements” page).
Dr. Ross earned his B.A. degree in English in 1994 from Colgate University and his M.A. degree in Liberal Arts in 1997 at St. John's College (Annapolis, Md.) He received his doctorate in higher education leadership and policy from Peabody College of Vanderbilt University. His dissertation topic was Bridging the Gap: A Multi-Case Study of the Adoption and Implementation of Instructional Technology in Higher Education.
He has served on the Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County’s board of directors. He is currently serving on the Greater Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors as treasurer, the Advisory Panel of the Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County, the Gulf Stream School Board of Trustees and the Millennium Campus Network Board of Directors. He is also the current Sunshine State Athletics Conference President.
Key Achievements, 2006-2012
In just six years under Dr. Kevin M. Ross’ leadership, Lynn University has made significant strides, including:
- a redesigned core curriculum titled the Dialogues of Learning. Emphasizing interdisciplinary learning, critical reasoning and in-depth writing and discussion, Lynn’s core curriculum has garnered national acclaim from higher education organizations and publications.
- launched the Lynn 3.0 program two years ago for qualified students. It saves a year’s tuition (approximately $45,000) by allowing a student to get bachelor’s degree in just three years.
- accreditation reaffirmed by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) in 2012.
- SACS’ approval of a Quality Enhancement Plan for undergraduate education titled The Citizenship Project: Commitment to Community. In keeping with Lynn’s commitment to foster global citizenship, the project entails a 2-1/2-week January Term course whereby every Lynn University freshman explores citizenship in the classroom and through community service.
- enhanced facilities, including a new performing arts center; extensive classroom renovations and technological improvements; a new tennis complex; new university entrances; improved student spaces including a renovated café and outdoor plaza; and a permanent campus memorial to the four students and two faculty members lost in the 2010 Haiti earthquake. Soon to be built are a soccer stadium and a business school building.
- campus-wide environmental sustainability, including a $10.7 million energy-savings program with Siemens Building Technologies Division (the largest effort of its kind in Florida).
- the first endowed professorship and new student scholarships
- a significant increase in alumni giving.
- selection as host site for the 2012 final presidential debate by the Commission on Presidential Debates.
- one of The Chronicle of Higher Education’s 2012 Great Colleges to Work For.
- ranked in 2012 by U.S. News & World Report as among the top four schools in the United States for percentage of international students; also ranked 57th among the magazine’s national list for “Highest Proportion of Classes Under 20.”