Rebecca Stoltzfus, vice provost for undergraduate education and professor of nutritional studies, has been announced as the candidate of choice to become the 18th president of Goshen College, her undergraduate alma mater.
Founded in 1894, Goshen is a private liberal arts college in Indiana affiliated with the Mennonite Church. According to the college, she will be formally introduced to the campus community June 14-15. The search committee then will present a final recommendation to the Goshen College and Mennonite Education Agency boards. It is expected Stoltzfus will take office in early November.
“I congratulate Becky on this well-deserved appointment,” said Cornell Provost Michael Kotlikoff. “Goshen College could not have found a more outstanding leader, and the fact that she is an alumna makes this appointment even more special. As a member of our faculty and as vice provost, Becky has had an enormous impact on our research and on student and engagement programs. She has left an indelible imprint on this institution, and her vision and experiences will serve Goshen well.”
“There is only one institution that could have attracted me away from Cornell at this time, and that is my alma mater, Goshen College,” said Stoltzfus. “I am compelled by Goshen’s innovative strengths in global education, experiential learning and excellent liberal arts education, and Goshen holds many family connections for me. While I am thrilled to be able to serve Goshen as its 18th president, I am sad to leave Cornell and the Ithaca community. I loved being a graduate student here and have been honored to be a part of the faculty for the past 15 years. The talent and spirit of this place is truly inspiring. My work here has been fascinating and rewarding, and I will always be a proud and loyal Cornellian.”
As vice provost for undergraduate education, Stoltzfus oversees initiatives designed to enhance undergraduate instruction and to promote an intellectual community in and out of the classroom and the laboratory, including learning experiences in student residences. Since 2011, she has been part of the leadership team of Engaged Cornell, the public engagement initiative that aims to integrate community-engaged learning as a hallmark of the Cornell experience.
A member of the faculty since 2002, Stoltzfus collaborated to create Cornell’s Global Health Program, which offers community-engaged learning opportunities for undergraduate students working on global health issues with partners in Tanzania, Zambia, the Dominican Republic and in two sites in India.
Stoltzfus’ research focuses on the causes and consequences of malnutrition in women and children in low-income countries. She has more than 150 peer-reviewed scientific publications, with collaborative research projects ongoing in Zimbabwe, Tanzania and India.
Alan Mathios, the Rebecca Q. and James C. Morgan Dean of the College of Human Ecology, said: “Becky is an inspired teacher at heart with a deep appreciation for the value of experiential learning as a tool for extending the impact of public health research. Her leadership at the College of Human Ecology and the Division of Nutritional Sciences is reflected in the growth of the Global Health program which ultimately proved to be a model for Engaged Cornell. She leaves a legacy at Human Ecology and, in turn, at Cornell for a modern approach to public engagement.”
Before joining Cornell’s faculty, Stoltzfus was assistant and associate professor of human nutrition at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health from 1992 to 2002.
She graduated from Goshen College in 1983 with a major in chemistry, and received master’s (1988) and doctoral (1992) degrees in human nutrition from Cornell.
Stoltzfus is a fellow of the International Union of Nutritional Sciences. She has been a member of the National Academy of Sciences Food and Nutrition Board, associate editor of the Journal of Nutrition, president of the Society for International Nutrition Research, and member of the National Academy of Sciences Forum on Investing in Young Children Globally. She has served as a member of two World Health Organization’s Expert Advisory Panels, for Nutrition and Parasitology, and is a recipient of several awards from the American Society for Nutrition for excellence in international nutrition research.