Susan M. Collins has been appointed provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Her appointment is effective immediately and runs through June 30, 2022.
Collins is the Edward M. Gramlich collegiate professor of public policy at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy and a professor of economics at the College of Literature, Science, and Arts. She has been serving as acting provost since January and interim provost since March. She has helped guide the transition to remote classes, the annual budget process, and the approval of updated policies governing the dismissal of tenured faculty.
“From the time of her appointment as acting provost in January and later as interim, she has provided inspired and steadfast leadership as the chief academic and budgetary officer for the university,” says Mark Schlissel, president of U-M. “I very much appreciate the leadership, insights, and stability she has provided to our institution during the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Her many years of experience as a distinguished academic leader and her expertise in public policy and financial systems make her ideally suited for the position of U-M provost.”
The provost is the chief academic officer and chief budgetary officer of U-M’s Ann Arbor campus. Collins will oversee the activities of the university’s 19 schools and colleges, as well as the many interdisciplinary institutes and centers.
“I’m honored to be part of the team that will lead the university as we navigate the uncertainties that the pandemic has brought to the world,” Collins says. “Higher education has a critical role to play in addressing these challenges. I look forward to working with U-M’s faculty, students, and staff in developing responses that will strengthen our society and enrich our shared future.”
Collins served as Ford School dean from 2007 to 2017, during which time she launched the school’s first undergraduate degree program. The school recognized her achievements in diversity, equity, and inclusion in graduate education.
Collins earned her bachelor’s degree in economics from Harvard University in 1980 and her Ph.D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1984. Before coming to the University of Michigan, she was on the economics faculty at Georgetown and Harvard universities and a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution.
She also serves on the board of directors for the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, the National Bureau of Economic Research, and the Peterson Institute for International Economics, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.