From Dr. Withers, Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education

Photo of Ben WithersDr. Withers served as chair of the Department of Art, Director of Honors and interim APUE.
He was named to the permanent position beginning February 1, 2104.

Feburary 2014

Though I have been at UK since 2004 and participated in many UGE lead initiatives, I had little idea of the programmatic scope and potential impact of the Division of Undergraduate Education until joined the unit full-time just last year. UGE serves over 2500 students through the exploratory advising services of Undergraduate Studies; its curricular offerings serve students at all levels of academic preparation, supporting developmental education through our Academic Preparation Program as well as UK’s most academically-well prepared through Honors, Chellgren, and the Gaines Center for the Humanities. Through Undergraduate Research, External Scholarships, Academic Enhancement the Stuckert Career Center, and our 1G programs, ¬†UGE assists students in all undergraduate majors and all colleges achieve academically and locate opportunities for life after UK. In addition, UGE is a university-wide service unit, one that facilitates curriculum development in all undergraduate colleges. No other unit on campus can help colleges drive campus-wide improvements in retention, graduation rates, and student success as can UGE.

As the university moves forward with the President and Provost’s ambitious visions, UGE can and must play a key role. Through our various programs, UGE ought to serve students in every undergraduate major. Its services ought to touch each undergraduate unit, each faculty member, each advisor, and every staff person engaged in undergraduate education. To make this happen in time of ever decreasing state support will be a challenge. From what I have learned over the last year, there is no doubt that the staff and faculty in UGE have the talent and creativity to rise to the occasion. I am honored and very pleased to have been chosen to help lead the Division at this remarkable time of change.