Colorado State University Provost and Executive Vice President Rick Miranda will step down from this role after 10 years of leading the academic side of the institution, President Joyce McConnell announced Nov. 7. McConnell intends to launch a rigorous national search for a provost and executive vice president later this fall. Upon the successful completion of that search, Miranda will return to his distinguished research and teaching career as a professor of mathematics in the College of Natural Sciences.
“Rick’s contributions to CSU, as a scholar, teacher and leader, are truly immeasurable,” McConnell said. “He has moved us forward in so many ways, leading dynamic curricular changes and academic technology advances that have led to demonstrable student success even as we’ve grown our student body significantly. He’s been with CSU through many challenges and helped us both weather those and achieve tremendous success along the way.”
Miranda, who earned his Ph.D. in mathematics from MIT, joined the CSU faculty as an assistant professor in 1982. He was named chair of the Department of Mathematics in 1997 and dean of the College of Natural Sciences in 2002. Miranda was named interim provost of CSU in 2009 by President Tony Frank, then named to the position permanently in 2010 after a national search.
“Everything that CSU accomplished as an institution over the last decade was made possible, in part, by the leadership of Rick Miranda,” said Frank, who is now chancellor of the CSU System. “His commitment to our faculty and to student success has been exceptional, and his guidance over our budget and enrollment processes were critical to getting CSU through the recession and back on solid ground. I am grateful to Rick both personally and professionally.”
As provost and executive vice president, Miranda served as the university’s top administrator after the president, with oversight of academic affairs, institutional budgets, enrollment, student affairs, IT, operations, research, and international engagement. During his tenure, Miranda led efforts to promote student success, including a focus on graduation rates that saw CSU’s overall graduation rate rise to 70.9%.
Miranda also helped create and implement programs focused on providing access to higher ed, including CSU’s Commitment to Colorado program – now known as CSU’s Tuition Assistance Grant – which pledges to cover at least one-half the cost of tuition for Colorado students who meet admissions requirements and whose families report a gross income of $64,000 or less. He helped formulate groundbreaking new partnerships with organizations such as Semester at Sea, the National Western Center, UCHealth, and universities worldwide. And he worked closely with Frank to guide the university through the Great Recession, fiscally as well as strategically.
“I know I speak for our whole campus community when I express my tremendous gratitude to Rick for his leadership, which is marked by a strong moral compass and a wonderfully dry sense of humor,” McConnell said. “We would not be the institution we are today without him.”