After 11 years of service at Catholic University, Dean of Students Margaret M. Higgins has accepted the position of vice president for university life at the University of San Francisco. She will leave CUA for her new post at the Jesuit institution in mid-October.
Higgins will serve as the chief student affairs officer of the California Bay Area university. She will report directly to the university’s provost and will serve on the President's Cabinet and Leadership Team. She will work closely with the provost and other members of the Provost Council to integrate classroom learning with co-curricular activities.
“For the past eleven years, Margaret Higgins has been a tireless and steady advocate for our students and for The Catholic University of America,” said the Very Rev. David M. O’Connell, C.M., president. “She has shared with so many students the joys and frustrations, the successes and failures of university life on campus in her role as dean of students. In her administrative responsibilities, she has been the consummate professional. I cannot even begin to count the number of times I have depended upon her for advice and for prompt action on behalf of our students. As she assumes greater administrative responsibilities at USF, I join the university community in wishing her the very best and all God's blessings. She has certainly been a blessing to us!”
Vice President for Student Life Susan D. Pervi said it has been a “privilege” to watch her long-time colleague interact with and care for CUA students. “For her, student life work is a calling, what author Robert Bella describes as ‘that ideal blending of activity and character that makes work inseparable from life’,” Pervi said. “While we will miss her dearly at CUA, the student development field in higher education and the student communities at USF are fortunate to have a committed leader, a true professional and a CUA alumna with a special calling.”
Higgins joined the CUA community in 1991 as the director of student activities. Previously, she held posts in student activities and housing at Merrimack College in North Andover, Mass.; Suffolk University in Boston, Mass.; Springfield College in Springfield, Mass., and the State University of New York at Cobleskill, N.Y.
In 1996, she was named dean of students at CUA. Her accomplishments have included spearheading efforts to build a $25.6 million university center, which is due for completion early next year; reorganizing the services provided by the dean of students office and playing a key role in establishing multicultural student services, wellness programs, the Parents’ Council and the Student Judiciary; and establishing a crisis management team to coordinate an effective and collaborative university response to critical student issues.
In May 2002, the New York native earned her Ph.D. in administration and policy at Catholic University. She received a master’s in education degree from Springfield College and a bachelor of science degree in communication disorders from The College of Saint Rose in Albany, N.Y.
Revised: Feb. 18, 2002
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