In this role, Kreider will provide the leadership and vision to create, implement and manage the strategic direction for Undergraduate Education on all campuses of WVU, including the main campus in Morgantown, WVU Tech in Beckley and Potomac State College in Keyser. He succeeds Dr. Sue Day-Perroots, who is retiring in August after a 34-year career at the university.
“Educating undergraduate students is at the very core of our mission as a university, so we must have someone leading that enterprise who can both envision bold initiatives and make them reality,” said Provost Joyce McConnell. “Paul Kreider possesses that rare and valuable combination of skills. Under his leadership, we will be well-equipped to offer an extraordinary education to an increasingly large and diverse student population."
As dean of the College of Creative Arts, Kreider enriched the college’s curriculum by adding several academic programs, including Musical Theatre, Music Industry, Music Therapy and Dance. He also significantly enhanced the college’s facilities. Kreider worked with faculty and staff in the School of Art & Design to open the Art Museum of WVU and the Nath Sculpture Garden and oversaw the conceptual design of the ongoing expansion of college’s main facility, the Creative Arts Center.
Additionally, he created a vibrant arts outreach program in the college and revitalized recruitment, resulting in a dramatic increase in enrollment. The fall 2017 entering class of CCA majors is projected to be the largest in decades.
Kreider joined West Virginia University as dean of the CCA in July 2011. He previously served as dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communication at Western Illinois University; chair of the Department of Music at Northern Kentucky University; associate dean of the College of Fine Arts at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas; chair and assistant chair, coordinator of Vocal Studies and director of Opera Theater at the School of Music at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Kreider’s work as an administrator follows a very successful career as a recording artist and performer. As a professional baritone, he sang with renowned operatic companies and symphony orchestras and appeared on stages around the world.
“I am both humbled and tremendously excited by this opportunity,” Kreider said. “At WVU we prepare the next generation of leaders and we send those leaders back into our communities armed with the tools to truly change our world. I look forward to leading the team in Undergraduate Education in continuing that mission and in finding creative, innovative ways to educate our students.”
Dr. Keith Jackson, the director of the WVU School of Music, will serve as interim dean of the CCA. The university will conduct a national search for a new permanent dean during the 2018-2019 academic year.
“Being asked to serve as the Dean of the College of Creative Arts at this exciting time in our history is an honor,” Jackson said. “Dean Kreider has left a wonderful legacy of growth and innovation and my hope is that we continue to serve as the leading arts institution in the state and region. We will stress the ‘creative’ aspect of our mission to serve our state and expand the global reach of this flagship institution.”
Dr. Michael Ibrahim, associate director of the WVU School of Music and associate professor of saxophone, will take over as interim director of the school.
“Dr. Ibrahim has been actively engaged in leadership roles in the School of Music for several years,” Jackson said. “I have great confidence in his ability to lead the school into the middle of the 21st century.”