TALLAHASSEE — On July 1, 2012, Florida A&M University’s (FAMU) College of Arts and Sciences will be formally divided into the College of Science and Technology, and the College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities.

According to Larry Robinson, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, the reorganized academic structure provides FAMU with the competitive edge to maximize its potential within each of the units, creating an intellectual environment that will nurture and develop the Millennial FAMUan.

The organizational structure for academic units is expected to lead to greater effectiveness by focusing efforts and oversight; greater efficiency by bringing smaller units together; and greater synergy by bringing together related units so that they are better positioned to leverage expertise and resources for increased productivity.

Maurice Edington will serve as interim dean of the College of Science and Technology, and Valencia Matthews will serve as the interim dean of the College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities. Ralph Turner, the current Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, will return to his former role as 3M Distinguished Professor of Chemistry in the new College of Science and Technology.

Edington most recently served as the University’s SACS Accreditation Liaison, the director of the FAMU Quality Enhancement Program, and chair of the University’s Curriculum Committee.  He has extensive experience in administrative leadership and accreditation, having served as the chairman of the FAMU Department of Chemistry from 2002 to 2008 and as director of the FAMU Office of Engineering and Science Support from 2003 to 2005. He received his B.A. degree in chemistry from Fisk University and a Ph.D. degree in physical chemistry from Vanderbilt University. He joined the faculty at FAMU in 1998 after completing a year of postdoctoral studies at Duke University.

Matthews is a full professor and assistant dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, where she supervises the arts, languages and humanities programs. She also serves as the director of FAMU’s  Essential Theatre.  Throughout her 18 years with the University, she supported many community service efforts, including founding and directing the Irene C. Edmonds Youth Theatre, a program for young people between the ages of 7 and 16.  Matthews received her B.S. degree in theatre from South Carolina State University, a master’s degree from Ohio State University and her Ph.D. from Florida State University.   

Turner has been employed at FAMU for the past 37 years, having previously served as chair of the Chemistry Department.  His exemplary efforts in teaching undergraduate and graduate physical chemistry have garnered him national recognition.   In addition to providing quality instruction, excellent administrative services and creative research, Turner has also been involved in numerous activities to increase significantly, the representation of minorities in STEM disciplines, these include director of the MARC Honors Undergraduate Research Training Program, director of the Thirteen College Curriculum Program, and director of the Florida-Georgia Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation Project.

The College of Science and Technology will house the following departments:

•    Biology

•    Chemistry

•    Computer Information


•    Mathematics

•     Physics

The College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities will house the following departments:

•    Army ROTC

•    English (The Foreign

    Language Department will be

    combined with Department of


•    History/Political Science/



•    Music

•    Psychology

•    Social Work

•    Sociology/Criminal Justice

•    Visual Arts