CORVALLIS, Ore. - Sam Stern, dean of the College of Education at Oregon State University since 2002, has announced plans to resign as dean and return to the faculty, effective in June of 2011.

"From the beginning, my plan was to eventually return to the classroom and to also re-engage with my research and writing," Stern said. "Even as dean, I've continued to teach a class at least once a year, and that has just whetted my appetite to go back to what I love doing best.

"I enjoyed my time in the dean's chair," he added, "and I am enthusiastic about the future of education programs at Oregon State."

During his tenure as dean, Stern helped develop and grow the innovative Education Double Degree program, which is now the second largest undergraduate major at OSU - and has encouraged students with majors ranging from science and engineering to the liberal arts to earn a second degree in education.

OSU's noted Community College Leadership program has emerged as one of the best in the nation, training numerous administrators in community colleges around the country.

Other hallmarks of the College of Education during Stern's tenure include:

  • The expansion of education offerings by the college into Central Oregon, through the OSU-Cascades Campus in Bend;
  • The increase of private support, including $1.3 million in private giving last year;
  • Greater outreach and engagement with the 15,000 alumni from the College of Education, as well as with external constituents.

Stern also has worked closely with OSU President Ed Ray to develop the Mid-Valley Partnership, which brings together higher education leaders with local school districts in the Willamette Valley to strengthen education initiatives and foster greater collaboration and alignment.

Sabah Randhawa, OSU provost and executive vice president, described Stern as a strong advocate for education in Oregon and beyond.

"The Education Double Degree program introduced in the College of Education under Sam's leadership is an innovative contribution to education programs at OSU," Randhawa said. "I am glad Sam has agreed to continue in the dean's role through the end of this biennium to further strengthen faculty and leadership collaborations, to establish OSU as a leader in STEM education and to build our education programs at the OSU-Cascades Campus.

"As much as we will miss Sam in his role as dean, I am delighted that he will return to the work he loves passionately - that of a scholar and educator."

An OSU faculty member since 1981, Stern is an internationally recognized expert in organizational creativity. In 1990, he became one of the first non-Japanese educators to occupy an endowed professorship at a Japanese university when he was appointed the Japan Management Association Professor of Creativity Development at the Tokyo Institute of Technology.

In 1998, he co-wrote the book, "Corporate Creativity," which has been translated into a dozen languages and was named as the 1998 "Book of the Year" by the Academy of Human Resource Development.

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Sam Stern, 541-737-6392