Dr. Fayneese Miller announced that she will retire from Hamline University on June 30, 2024.
In July 2015, the Hamline University Board of Trustees selected Dr. Fayneese Miller as the 20th president of Hamline University. Over the past 8 years, Dr. Miller has been an exceptional, dynamic, and inclusive leader for Hamline with a strong commitment to academic program development, diversity, and fundraising.
Among her many achievements, Dr. Miller strengthened the honors program for first-year students, added new academic programs including business analytics, computational sciences, and contemporary music, and invested in several signature programs at Hamline, including forensic science, criminal justice, legal studies, and accounting. Under Dr. Miller, the University has experienced significant growth in the number of students applying for and successfully receiving national awards like the Truman Scholarship and Fulbright Awards. In 2018, the American Association of Colleges and Universities, with funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, selected Hamline as one of only ten Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation campuses in the United States.
Dr. Miller also oversaw the University' s largest first-year enrollment growth, launched the "Take the Lead" brand campaign, increased the University's endowment, initiated a $110 million comprehensive campaign which has raised more than $105 million to date, delivered balanced budgets in each of her years as University President, and created a reputation for Hamline as an institution that welcomes students from diverse backgrounds, including students of color, LGBTQ+ students, and one of the higher percentages of first generation students of any university in the region.
Dr. Miller established a national platform for Hamline through her service on the Board of Governors for the NCAA and as the Chairman of NCAA's Division Ill President's Council and a member of the NCAA Constitution Committee. She also has served on the board of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, and currently serves on the boards of the New American Colleges and Universities, the International Association of Methodist-Related Schools, Colleges, and Universities, the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry, College Possible, the Education Advisory Board, and the American Council of Education Fellows Program. Dr. Miller is a member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences working group on building democratic citizens in higher education and the ALL IN Presidents' Council on democratic citizenship. Dr. Miller also serves on the following local boards: Twin Cities Public Television, Minnesota Opera, Schubert Club, Minnesota Private College Council, Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, the Constellation Fund, Governor's Residence Council, and Mitchell Hamline School of Law.
Dr. Miller noted: "It has been an honor and privilege to lead Hamline University, an institution that values social justice, equity, inclusion, and civic engagement through its service-learning opportunities for students and curriculum offerings. I am proud that Hamline recently received significant federal funding and targeted increased private donations to support paid internships which will afford widespread opportunity for Hamline students for paid real-world employment experiences. It has been a pleasure working together with board members, students, faculty, staff, and the community in enhancing Hamline University's strong commitment to maintaining high academic standards, creating a sense of belonging for all on campus, and developing students who understand and appreciate their role as members of a civil society."
Hamline Board of Trustees Chair Ellen Watters noted: "Dr. Miller has been an innovative and transformational leader for Hamline. Through her strategic vision and ability to navigate complex issues, she ably has led the University through a time of growth and change, and she has done so by centering the needs and well-being of Hamline students in her work. Hamline is forever grateful for Dr. Miller's tireless and dedicated service."
Dr. Miller brought 30 years of academic and higher education leadership experience to her role at Hamline—as the first coordinator of education studies and the founding chairman of ethnic studies at Brown University, where she served on the faculty for 20 years, and for nearly 10 years, as dean of the College of Education and Social Services at the University of Vermont.
Dr. Miller is a social psychologist who specializes in the psychosocial development of adolescents, with a focus on socio-political and identity development. She has authored or coauthored seven books or monographs, more than a dozen book chapters, and an extensive number of journal articles, research reports, and conference presentations. She has conducted studies for the Rhode Island Family Court on school-based truancy courts and the Rhode Island Supreme Court on race and gender bias in the courts. She has been an invited lecturer at institutions throughout the U.S. and in Saudi Arabia, Thailand, China, Australia, and the United Kingdom. She has also been a visiting scholar at the University of Cape Town in South Africa. She has served as special advisor to the chairman of the board at the University of Business and Technology in Jedda, Saudi Arabia.
Dr. Miller holds a PhD and an MS from Texas Christian University in Experimental Psychology, and a BA in Psychology from Hampton University. Her post-doctoral work in Applied Social Psychology was completed at Yale University.
The University will begin the process of conducting a national search for a successor.