Scott Olson appointed interim vice chancellor for academic and student affairs at MnSCU

Posted: June 16, 2010

Contact: Doug Anderson,, 651-201-1426

The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board of Trustees today appointed Scott R. Olson to be the interim vice chancellor for academic and student affairs.

Olson, 51, is the provost and vice president for academic and student affairs at Minnesota State University, Mankato.

“Scott Olson is an enormously able administrator and scholar,” said Trustee Ruth Grendahl, who chairs the board’s Human Resources Committee. “I can’t tell you how pleased I am that he has agreed to take this position for the system.”

Chancellor James H. McCormick said: “Scott Olson has demonstrated his leadership skills successfully at one of the system’s largest institutions. I am confident that he will keep this system on course and moving forward during his time as interim vice chancellor.”

“It is a great honor to work with this board and Chancellor McCormick,” Olson said. “I look forward to doing everything I can to serve our students and our state.”

Olson has held his current position and been a professor of communication studies at Minnesota State University, Mankato, since 2003. Previously, he was dean of the College of Communication, Information and Media at Ball State University in Indiana; assistant and associate dean of arts and sciences at Central Connecticut State University; and an adjunct instructor at Northwestern University in Illinois. He holds a bachelor’s degree in intellectual history and a master’s degree and a doctorate in radio, television and film, all from Northwestern University.

His appointment will begin July 1. He will replace Linda Baer, who is resigning to become a senior officer with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation working with its Post-Secondary Success Initiative.