Sona Andrews selected as new provost and vice president for academic affairs
Author: David Santen, Office of University Communications, Portland State University
Posted: March 23, 2012

Portland State University selects Sona Andrews as new provost and vice president for academic affairs

(Portland, Ore.) March 23, 2012 — Following a national search, Portland State University has selected Sona Karentz Andrews as its next provost and vice president for academic affairs.

Andrews brings nearly two decades of higher education experience in senior academic administrative positions. Since 2010, Andrews has served as vice chancellor for academic strategies for the Oregon University System (OUS), which governs the state’s seven public universities.

In her new position as provost and vice president, Andrews will oversee an urban research university comprised of seven schools and colleges and more than 1,500 faculty, serving nearly 30,000 students. She will lead the Office of Academic Affairs ( and will report to PSU President Wim Wiewel.

“Dr. Andrews offers a wealth of leadership experience and accomplishments earned at urban public research universities, which will prove invaluable in her role at Portland State University,” said President Wiewel. “I want to thank our search committee for running an effective and successful search, and our faculty, staff and students for providing valuable input into this important decision.”

“Dr. Andrews has an excellent reputation as an academic leader who is committed, energetic, upbeat, collaborative—and above all, someone who gets things done,” said Jon Fink, vice president for research and strategic partnerships, who chaired the search. “She was our first choice out of a pool of outstanding candidates, and I look forward to working with her.”

Sona Andrews will begin on July 1, 2012. She replaces current provost Roy Koch, who announced in September 2011 that he would retire in June 2012, following 30 years at PSU, the last seven as provost. (Link to announcement:

“This is an exciting opportunity for me,” said Andrews. “I share PSU’s aspirations to be among the nation’s leading urban public research universities. We can achieve this by striving for excellence, making strategic decisions, creating an institution that values equity and inclusion, being a place where students, faculty and staff thrive, and by developing a unified and strong voice for supporting public higher education in Oregon.”

Before joining OUS, Andrews served as provost and vice president for academic affairs at Boise State University from 2004-2010. At the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee (1988–2005), Andrews held several administrative positions, culminating as vice provost.  She has held faculty positions as a professor of geography at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and Boise State University. Andrews served as an American Council on Education Fellow from 2000 to 2001.

Andrews has published extensively, presented at over 100 academic and professional conferences, and served as principal- or co-investigator for over $5 million in public and private grants. She holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. in Geography from Arizona State University, and a B.A. in Geography from Worcester State College in Massachusetts. (Link to curriculum vitae:

NOTE: Media interested in interviewing Sona Andrews should contact Suzanne Effros, PSU Office of University Communications, 503-725-8794,

PORTLAND STATE UNIVERSITY (PSU), a 50-acre campus located in downtown Portland, Ore., is a nationally acclaimed leader in sustainability and community-based learning. The University's position in the heart of Oregon's economic and cultural center enables PSU students and faculty to apply scholarly theory to the real-world problems of business and community organizations. Portland State offers more than 220 undergraduate, master's, and doctoral degree options, as well as graduate certificates and continuing education programs. PSU is Oregon's largest and most diverse university, with 30,000 students hailing from all 50 states and from nearly 100 nations around the world.

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For Immediate Release (#12-027)

David Santen, Office of University Communications
Portland State University | 503-725-8765

Office of the President, Portland State University