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Stephen Percy appointed as PSU's new dean of the College of Urban and Public Affairs
Author: Scott Gallagher
Posted: January 6, 2014

Following a national search, Portland State University has appointed Stephen Percy as the new dean of the College of the Urban and Public Affairs. Percy will oversee a College that joins three cornerstone disciplines of contemporary life—urban studies, community health, and government—under one roof.

“I am thrilled and excited to join with talented and engaged faculty, staff, students and community partners in advancing CUPA as a premier public affairs college that expands policy knowledge, educates effective leaders and scholars in the policy field, and contributes to urban growth and development,” said Percy.

He inherits a robust college that includes the Nohad A. Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning, Mark O. Hatfield School of Government, and the School of Community Health. PSU’s location in the heart of downtown Portland provides the perfect lab for students at the undergraduate and graduate level.

"We feel very fortunate to have Steve join us at Portland State,” said Provost Sona Andrews. “We will all benefit greatly from his experience as a leader, his passion for the work, and his understanding of urban universities and how we are an integral part of our community."

Percy currently serves as the Dean of the College of Public Affairs and Professor in the School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Baltimore (UB). While at UB he has championed efforts to create new graduate programs, grow undergraduate and graduate enrollments, launch new continuing education programs, and expand community-university partnerships focused on experiential learning for students, community revitalization, combatting structural racism, and building the capacity within the faith-based community to pursue community building strategies.

In his prior position at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee—where he served as Professor of Political Science, Director of the Center for Urban Initiatives and Research, and Acting Dean of the new School of Public Health—he was actively involved in university-wide initiatives to promote university-community engagement.  His work in community engagement—pursued through the Milwaukee Idea Initiative—is outlined in two books:  A Time for Boldness: A Story of Institutional Change and Creating a New Kind of University: Institutionalizing Community-University Engagement.

His research interests include public policy and policy implementation, urban politics, disability rights policy, and university-community engagement. Percy’s first day at work will be June 1, 2014.