Dr. Liza Ann Acosta
I am encouraged every day by North Park students as I observe them truly believing in the possibility of change and willing to make a difference in the world. As educators, it’s our duty and privilege to equip our students for this work. As University dean, my hope is to facilitate the work of development for the faculty to be at their best as they prepare our students for lives of significance and service. We take this mission very seriously.
North Park is an intercultural university with a student body comprised of a diverse population. A diverse faculty is essential not only so that all our students can see themselves reflected in the people who teach them, but also so that their learning will be enhanced by experiencing the world through another’s eyes. I will be initiating efforts to more effectively recruit and retain faculty of color who can and do impact the student learning experience through expertise, mentorship, and role-modeling.
I am always thinking of ways that North Park’s faculty, as a collective, can be even better in their respective specialty fields, and how we can help students have an enriching experience. Academic programs are structured in a way to reflect both a rigorous learning experience in the classroom and experiential learning opportunities outside the classroom when engaging how the city of Chicago functions and thrives. Preparing students to contribute in real possible ways—through the arts, life sciences, technology—is what we seek at North Park, with faculty who have a passion for “planting a seed and watching students grow” as they make connections between classroom work and the world.
As University dean, core principles guide my role: encouraging creativity, providing resources for continuous improvement and innovation, documenting and learning from best practices in research and teaching, advocating for a diverse faculty, and nurturing professional development for all faculty members. With these in motion, my role will continue to evolve to meet the needs of both students and faculty.
Liza Ann Acosta