Earlier today, members of the Barnard community were notified that Dean Avis Hinkson, BC ’84, will be stepping down from her post later this summer. Starting on August 1, she will be the new Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students at Pomona College, where she has previously held positions. In Hinkson’s place, Executive Director of Residence Life and Housing Alicia Lawrence and Dean of Studies Natalie Friedman will together assume the responsibilities of Dean of the College.
In a community-wide email announcing this change, President Sian Beilock lauded Hinkson’s achievements as a “tireless advocate” for Barnard students, particularly her work regarding Title IX, DACA and undocumented students, and changes in Convocation. Other notable incidents documented here on Bwog include her addition of extra guest swipes in meal plans, her appearances at SGA meetings, and her statements on Barnard’s housing guarantee agreement. We will best remember her, however, for her literally thousands of emails and her gif-heavy “Office Minute” videos.
Barnard will begin the search for Hinkson’s replacement this summer. Beilock noted that the administration will be “incorporating input from faculty, staff, students, and alumnae in this important process,” but has not yet announced a process for facilitating such input.
Beilock’s message concludes: “Please join me in thanking Avis for her extraordinary service to Barnard and in wishing her much success at Pomona and with all that lies ahead.”
Full announcement from President Beilock:
Dear Members of the Barnard Community,
I am writing with news that is bittersweet. Today, Pomona College will announce the appointment of Dean of the College Avis Hinkson ’84 as vice president for student affairs and dean of students, effective August 1, 2018. This appointment is a true testament to Avis’s leadership and the significant work she has accomplished at Barnard over the past seven years.
As dean of the college, Avis has been a tireless advocate for our students, playing a leadership role in several key initiatives that have markedly improved the Barnard student experience. Among her many achievements, she has strengthened programming and support in the areas of Title IX and accommodations for individuals with disabilities. She developed a program for undocumented and DACA students that includes academic and personal advising, access to legal support, funding for internships and summer housing, and financial aid. She also reinvented Convocation as a College-wide event for students, faculty, staff, and alumnae with a nationally recognized alumna speaker. Throughout her tenure, Avis has always been ready to support students and colleagues alike, demonstrating her dedication to Barnard and her love for the job.
Avis has decades of experience in higher education, including prior work at Pomona, the University of California at Berkeley, Cornell University, and Mills College. With her return to Pomona, she will be the senior officer charged with creating and managing Pomona’s student life program, including comprehensive co-curricular programs and services.
We will begin the search for Avis’s replacement shortly and look forward to incorporating input from faculty, staff, students, and alumnae in this important process. In the interim, I have asked Executive Director of Residence Life and Housing Alicia Lawrence and Dean of Studies Natalie Friedman to jointly take on additional responsibilities in the Dean of the College area. I look forward to working with Natalie and Alicia and their dedicated staff.
I am grateful for Avis’s many contributions to the College. Although she is leaving us in this role, we know that she will always be a devoted alumna and an integral part of the Barnard community.
Please join me in thanking Avis for her extraordinary service to Barnard and in wishing her much success at Pomona and with all that lies ahead.
Sian Leah Beilock