Dean officially recognized

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  • Martha Abell

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Caitlyn Oliver

Georgia Southern University officially welcomes Dr. Martha Abell as the new Dean of the College of Science and Mathematics (COSM).

Previously, Dr. Abell was the interim dean before officially taking over the position. She was taking over in place of Bret Danilowicz, who left to become the Dean of Arts and Sciences at Columbus State University in July 2012.

There was an overwhelming number of notes of support from across campus, Abell said.

“It made me remember all of the people who have helped me along the way, from my outstanding administrative assistants to the wonderful colleagues and mentors I’ve had,” Abell said.

Before the interim position, Abell was the Department Chair of Mathematical Sciences for eight years.

“As department chair, you’re just focused on your little area and everything there. As a dean, you’re over many other areas and you get to learn a lot about what takes place. For me it was the science areas because I was dealing with math. The challenges for science were a little different from math,” Abell said.

The dean of every college must communicate with the provost and other colleges the needs of that particular college.

“Dr. Abell enjoyed strong faculty support for this role,” Jean Bartels, provost and vice president for academic affairs, said in a press release. “I am very pleased that she has agreed to take on this new role and am confident that she will be a strong leader capable of moving COSM to its next level of excellence.”

Problems are reported to the department chairs before reaching the dean. Abell is now more often called to speak at events and visit with people more than as department chair, when she dealt more with students and focused on the people in the department.

“We’ve really worked hard to help students succeed in core classes and we want to make sure we keep doing that, to help students understand that it’s important to know about math and science and that it impacts their lives when they’re out of college and trying to understand the world and what’s going on around them.”

“Of course a top priority for me will be to work with our development officer and others in the college in order to create more scholarships and endowments to recruit and retain students and faculty,”Abell said.

COSM has a strong history in its teaching, research and service opportunities.

Abell said, “We want to build on what we’ve done in the past. We have a really strong history in all areas, like teaching and research service, so we want to keep moving in the right direction.”