Board of Governors Announces Dr. Anthony L. Jenkins as the University’s 11th President

Contact: Kimberly Osborne
(304) 766-3363
May 10, 2016

University Board of Governors Announces Dr. Anthony L. Jenkins as the University’s 11th President

INSTITUTE, W.Va. – The West Virginia State University Board of Governors (WVSU BOG) today named Dr. Anthony L. Jenkins as the 11th President of West Virginia State University.  Jenkins will assume the presidency on July 1, 2016.

Following a national search, the Presidential Search Advisory Committee recommended final candidates to the WVSU BOG.  Those candidates were invited to WVSU’s Institute, W.Va. campus in late April to meet with students, faculty, staff, alumni, community members and business leaders at a series of open forums.  After reviewing stakeholders’ comments regarding each candidate, the WVSU BOG offered the position of President of West Virginia State University to Jenkins. The presidential contract requires final approval from the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission.

“I am humbled to be selected as the 11th President of West Virginia State University,” Dr. Anthony Jenkins said. “Throughout my career, I have focused my efforts and energy on students and ensuring their path to earning a college education is accessible and, most of all, challenging and rewarding.  I am truly honored to join a family—the State family—which is as dedicated to student-centeredness and access. On behalf of my wife, Toinette and our daughters, Ashley and Alicia, thank you for welcoming us, and we look forward to serving and leading all Yellow Jackets in the Kanawha Valley, state and region to a prosperous future.”

“This is an exciting day for West Virginia State as we continue our momentum of student-centered growth, passion for community service and continued quest to provide access to higher education for all people under the leadership of Dr. Jenkins,” said Dr. Ann Brothers Smith, Chair of the WVSU BOG. “On behalf of the entire State family, I extend a warm West Virginia State welcome to Dr. Jenkins, Toinette, Ashley, and Alicia, as we are eager to advance to the next chapter of opportunity for the University and its students.”

Jenkins, a Washington, D.C. native, is a United States Army veteran and has a background in criminal justice, sociology and educational leadership and policy studies. He most recently served as Senior Associate Vice President for Student Development and Enrollment Services at the University of Central Florida (UCF).  During his tenure at UCF, Jenkins supported a strategic vision that impacted student life, success, retention and graduation rates. He also was part of a team of university leaders to develop policies, procedures and training on a variety of higher education issues, including a new response process to incidents of racial-bias, sexual misconduct and substance abuse, as well as raised money for students in crisis (i.e. homeless students, personal emergency).  Prior to that, he served as Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, where he developed and implemented the university’s first comprehensive retention plan resulting in an increase in first-to-second and second-to-third year return rate.

Jenkins’ higher education experience also includes serving as the Dean of Students at the University of Houston Clear Lake; Associate Dean of Students at the University of North Carolina Wilmington; Assistant Dean of Students at Northeastern Illinois University; Area Coordinator at Virginia Tech University; and Admission and Financial Aid Advisor at Jackson State University. Prior to his career in higher education, Jenkins served in the United States Army as an Air Defense Artillery Specialist.

Jenkins has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice/Sociology from Fayetteville State University, a master’s degree in Criminology from North Carolina Central University and a doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from Virginia Tech University.

Jenkins and his wife, Toinette, have two daughters, Ashley and Alicia.

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West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multi-generational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service, and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
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