URI appoints award-winning professor interim dean for the College of Business Administration

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KINGSTON, R.I. – February 13, 2015 – An award-winning University of Rhode Island business professor, Kathryn Jervis, has been named interim dean of the College of Business Administration. Donald H. DeHayes, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs made the appointment and Jervis began her duties last month, succeeding Mark Higgins, who left the University in December.


Jervis, of Hope Valley, has won numerous teaching excellence awards and is an authority on health care management finance. Most recently she chaired the committee that developed a health care management specialization for the MBA program.


“We are optimistic about the future of the College of Business Administration and I am confident that we have excellent transitional leadership in place,” said DeHayes. “Dr. Jervis is a well-respected and highly valued member of the faculty. She has a reputation of service to the College, a passionate commitment to diversity, and has led interdisciplinary efforts in health care management — all of which are strategically important to the University’s future.


Prior to her appointment, Jervis served as associate professor of Accounting and Information Science and Accounting Information Systems Area Coordinator. She is the first woman to hold the chair named for Richard Vangermeersch, the much-lauded professor who launched careers of generations of accountants from URI over 34 years. Jervis also served with the former dean to manage the college’s accreditation process.


“I am such a believer in the College of Business Administration and URI and am excited to take on this role,” said Jervis. “I greatly appreciate the provost’s confidence in me and I am honored to have been nominated for this position by colleagues. I will do my absolute best to carry out the responsibilities of the interim dean for the College on behalf of our stellar faculty and our talented undergraduate and graduate students. I know that the College of Business and the University play a pivotal role in helping to improve economic conditions state wide.”


Jervis is a recognized leader and excellent teacher who has received the Clay V. Sink Excellence Award for Faculty Service in 2013, the Beta Gamma Sigma Teaching Excellence Award in 2011, the Thomas Chisholm Graduate Teaching Award in 2010, and was nominated in 2011 for the URI Diversity Award for Faculty Excellence. Her teaching experience includes financial, governmental and not-for-profit accounting at the undergraduate and graduate levels.


Jervis has studied the intersection of business and health studies careers and has spoken recently about such topics as “Transforming Trends in Healthcare Restructuring, Reimbursement, and Research.”


Jervis has several publications in scholarly accounting and health care journals that include Accounting and the Public Interest, Journal of Health Care Finance, Issues in Accounting Education and Journal of the American Taxation Association. She serves on journal editorial boards for health care and education, and on executive committees for the government and not-for-profit and public interest sections of the American Accounting Association.


Jervis earned a doctorate in business administration and accounting from the University of Connecticut, a masters degree in accounting from the University of Rhode Island and a bachelor’s degree in mathematics – elementary education from Rhode Island College.


The URI College of Business Administration, with more than 1,500 undergraduate students and 250 graduate students, has served as the leader in business education, research, and outreach in the State of Rhode Island and beyond since it was founded in 1923. It is the first accredited business school in Rhode Island (1969) and has the first accredited accounting program at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in the Northeast (1993).


Photo by Nora Lewis