Marquette Wire

Douglas Woods ready for new role as Graduate School dean

Douglas Woods. Photo by Ben Erickson /benjamin.erickson@marquette.edu

Photo by UWM Photo Services

Douglas Woods. Photo by Ben Erickson /benjamin.erickson@marquette.edu

Gary Leverton

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After a search lasting around five months, Douglas Woods will become dean of Marquette’s Graduate School on Jan. 1, 2016.

Woods comes to Marquette from Texas A&M University where he was the department chair and a psychology professor. He previously was an associate dean at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s Graduate School for 14 years.

When the university’s Graduate School dean position became available, Woods said he couldn’t pass on the opportunity to apply. After his interview in July, Woods said he was very impressed with Marquette’s students and faculty.

“Lot of opportunity for growth and energy,” Woods said about the university. “I knew I would get to be at a place that is really going places.”

Woods was also drawn to the position because of UW-Milwaukee’s former chancellor, University President Michael Lovell.

“Loved him at (UW-Milwaukee),” Woods said about Lovell. “Watched what he had done at (UW-Milwaukee) and loved the energy he was bringing.”

Woods said his first year as dean will involve getting to know Marquette and setting up conditions where the faculty are innovative, graduate programs are always being strengthened and training is consistent with available jobs.

In the long term, Woods said he wants to build partnerships with the communities, businesses and government organizations in the area.

“I want to work together with anybody who wants our students to succeed,” Woods said. “I want to make sure what we’re offering is consistent with the job market.”

Woods also wants an increase in students, to get more support for those students, to make the curriculum stronger and ensure Marquette students are sought-after in the job market.

He isn’t only concerned with Marquette students, though. He said it’s important to reach out to other institutions like UW-Milwaukee and work with them to offer Milwaukee the best graduate students possible.

Marija Gajdardziska-Josifovska, Woods’ colleague and dean of UW-Milwaukee’s Graduate School, said Woods is a honest man with integrity, which she believes are necessary leadership qualities.

“He is always willing to look for the best for students and programs,” Gajdardziska-Josifovska said. “He really looks at the big picture and he is a dynamic guy with lots of ideas.”

Gajdardziska-Josifovska wrote a recommendation letter for Woods, praising his work at UW-Milwaukee and explaining how he would successfully fill the Marquette dean position.

“Wood’s experience in (UW-Milwaukee’s) Graduate School was very successful not only because he is a well-respected scholar who continued to teach and work on his research, but because of his proactive and inclusive management and leadership style,” Gajdardziska-Josifovska said in the recommendation letter.

“I have a very high regard for (Woods,) both as a person and an administrator,” said Michael Liston, a philosophy professor who worked with Woods at UW-Milwaukee.

“I am really excited about the position,” Woods said. “(Milwaukee’s) a great city and there are so many opportunities for our programs.”

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