Kristin Sobolik chosen as the new dean for COLA
The new Dean of College Of Liberal Arts, Kristin Sobolik, hopes to strengthen COLA’s connections to the rest of campus and the regional community, and to keep Wright State on pace with current society.
Beginning her tenure on Jan. 7, Sobolik said that she wanted to focus on maintaining and improving COLA’s role as the “center” of the university.
“We teach every single student that comes through the door,” Sobolik said . “Every student has an experience in the college of liberal arts, and we want to make sure that experience is as positive as possible.”
Sobolik previously served as the associate dean of the University of Maine, and she felt it was time to try something different. She said she was originally looking for a college of liberal arts and sciences, but was impressed by the way that Wright State projected itself to the community and by the importance of the arts at the university.
“Wright State University is an entirely different culture,” Sobolik said. “To me that’s exceedingly exiting to figure it all out so we can move the college in positive directions.”
Sobolik said she felt it was important to appreciate all disciplines, and to make sure that students have the ability to think critically, analyze problems and communicate ideas effectively in today’s society.
“We need to make sure we’re making connections to the 21st century,” Sobolik said. “So that our disciplines and what we’re teaching our students and how we’re engaging with our students are relevant for what’s going on today.”
Wright State’s activity in the regional community also caught the eye of the new dean.
“Wright State is strongly focused in the community,” Sobolik said. “I really wanted an institution that had that community engagement focus.”
Sobolik also said she felt that students should be highly valued in decisions involving change at universities, because they are quickly moving through their academic careers, and they are often more prone to desire change than faculty or administration.
“The change in an institution really needs to come from the students,” Sobolik said. “They’re the ones who are marching through quickly.”
Sobolik said she was still in the process of meeting colleagues and staff, and that she will be meeting with students during advising days on March 6 and 14.