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Ursuline College President Sister Christine De Vinne, OSU plans to retire on June 30, 2024. She told the college’s board of trustees this will be her final year at the institution’s helm.
“It’s been an honor to serve Ursuline College — my beloved alma mater– as president,” Sister De Vinne said. Known on campus as Sister Chris, she is in her ninth year. “I will celebrate my 50th college reunion here with the class of 1973 next month. The timing is right for me to relinquish my keys to a new president, ready to lead our incredible faculty and staff and build on the momentum of their accomplishments,” she added.
“Our undergraduate enrollment has rebounded to pre-pandemic growth levels. We’ve created new in-demand graduate degrees to meet the area’s workforce needs, including a physician assistant program, a nurse anesthetist program in our doctor of nursing practice degree and a re-imagined MBA for online learners. Our graduates go on to serve Northeast Ohio as the region’s most dedicated nurses, entrepreneurs, educators, artists and scientists,” Sister De Vinne said.
She was appointed president in July 2015, after 14 years as faculty member, then dean, at Ursuline and five years as vice president for academic affairs at Notre Dame of Maryland University. During her tenure, the college increased undergraduate student retention, launched a Student Success Center, renovated the Dauby Science Center and opened the Besse Library Learning Commons. It was named the No. 1 college in the nation for student upward social mobility in a study by the American Enterprise Institute. The National League of Nursing named Ursuline College a Center of Excellence for Nursing Education. The college also initiated an Anisfield-Wolf Faculty Fellowship in partnership with the Cleveland Foundation and launched an annual Juneteenth Celebration in collaboration with the city of Pepper Pike.
“Sister Christine has driven the college forward under two strategic plans, undeterred even by a global pandemic,” said John “Jack” M. Newman Jr., chair of the college’s board of trustees. He said she has left an indelible mark on the campus and under her leadership, the college has carried out its mission in new and transformative ways.
“I am grateful that we have had the opportunity to serve Ursuline College together and appreciate that she has created a dynamic launching pad for her successor,” Newman added.
Board Vice Chair Teri Corletzi, ’90, will lead a search committee as the college seeks a new president. “A little over a year ago, we celebrated the 150th anniversary of the founding of Ursuline College,” said Corletzi. “Sister Chris has positioned Ursuline and its new president to be ready for our next century of service to Northeast Ohio.”
Founded in 1871, Ursuline College serves a diverse population from across Northeast Ohio and beyond. Many of its students are the first in their families to seek a degree.
“The college is proud of its role in Catholic higher education and grateful to the Ursuline Sisters of Cleveland for their sponsorship and support,” said Sister DeVinne. “The commitment of the college’s leadership and the whole campus community will ensure that our 18th president begins a new era from a strength rooted in pride and history.”
After retiring, Sister De Vinne plans to take a break before finding fresh ways to continue her ministry as an Ursuline sister.