Covering the Land of Lincoln

UAFS Announces New Dean of College of Health, Education and Human Sciences

The University of Arkansas at Fort Smith has Dr. D. Antonio “Dean” Cantu elected Dean of the College of Health, Education and Human Sciences. Cantu will take up his position on February 1st. The search for the new main administrator has been under the direction of the national law firm Academic Career and Executive Search since June.

“I am very pleased that Dr. Cantu has chosen to join UAFS as Inaugural Dean of the College of Health, Education and Human Sciences, ”said Probst Dr. Georgia Hale. “His broad experience includes leading the successful merger of multiple departments, which will be very valuable as he works with the department leadership, faculty and staff within this newly formed college.”

“I am honored and honored to be elected first dean of the College of Health, Education, and Human Sciences at the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith,” said Cantu. “I am truly grateful for this opportunity to work with the extremely dedicated and exceptionally talented faculty and staff at the college to provide our students with an educational experience that aligns with UAFS ‘mission and prepares them to thrive in an ever-changing situation be. “World.”

Cantu said he looks forward to working most with the leadership team, faculty, staff, community partners and alumni. “Collaboration is essential to building on the rich tradition of excellence in each of the college’s unique programs and providing our students with the best possible educational experience to prepare them for their respective careers that focus on maintaining physical and mental skills.” , social and educational needs of our communities. In fact, the pandemic is a reminder of how important this allegation is and how important these professions are in our society. “

Cantu is currently the assistant dean and director of the Department of Education, Counseling and Leadership at Bradley University, a high-ranking private university in Peoria, Illinois that serves nearly 6,000 undergraduate and graduate students. During his 13 years at Bradley, Cantu oversaw strategic initiatives, including merging two different academic departments into a cohesive unit and developing and implementing a five-year strategic plan for the departments. In addition, he led departmental affairs, governance and management, climate assessment and improvement, and the full evaluation and revision of the departments’ policies, procedures and practices to best serve his department’s students, faculty and staff and the university as a whole.

He is currently also working as a research assistant in the research center of the Future Institute.

In previous positions, Cantu was Dean and Professor of Education at Indiana University Kokomo and Director of Social Science Education at Ball State University. Prior to his career in education, Cantu served as an S-2 intelligence officer for the 5/33 Armor Battalion, 194th Armored Brigade, Fort Knox, Kentucky, in the U.S. Army.

“In each of his previous positions, Dr. Cantu has been actively involved in building relationships with community partners for the benefit of students, faculty, and staff, ”said Hale. “Such relationships are critical to the success of programs at the College of Health, Education and Human Sciences.”

Cantu earned his Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction 1997 from Southern Illinois University; his Ed.S. (SCCT) in Community College Teaching in 1989, his Masters of Arts in History in 1984, and his Bachelor of Science in Social Sciences in 1983, all from Arkansas State University; and his Associates of Science in Social Science in 1981 from Highland Community College.

“This is a homecoming for my wife, Sandy and I, because she was born and raised in Arkansas, where we met and married as college students,” he said.

Cantu has continued to focus on leadership development after attending leadership institutes at the College of William & Mary and Yale University, and regularly publishes academic research, books and textbooks, journal articles and interactive online curricula, and is the editor of several academic journals. and contributes to national discussions on education, health and social sciences. Cantu has also presented TED Talks in his research areas, spoken in dozen of national and international panels and moderated the “Future Insight” podcast.

Cantu’s wife is a special education teacher and the couple have three children. In his spare time he enjoys traveling with his family and races 5 and 10 km on the weekends. He is currently training for the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon in Indianapolis this spring.

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