The new dean of The University of Texas-Pan American's College of Health Sciences and Human Services (CHSHS) is no stranger to the Rio Grande Valley.
Dr. John Ronnau, who is coming to UTPA from the University of Central Florida (UCF), worked at The University of Texas at Brownsville from 1999-2006, where he was a professor in the department of behavioral sciences throughout his time there and was the vice president for administration and partnership affairs from 2001-2006.
Ronnau, who begins his new job at UTPA Feb. 1, said he is looking forward to returning to the Valley.
"It is a great opportunity to be part of a dynamic, vibrant, growing institution with such an important mission," Ronnau said. "Having lived in the Valley for seven years, my wife and I have many fond memories and friends. We are very excited and pleased to be returning there to live and work."
Ronnau, who has been the director of and a professor in the school of social work at UCF, was selected after the University conducted a nationwide search for a new dean. Dr. Janice Maville, the Lillian O. Slemp Endowed Chair in Nursing, has been serving as interim dean since June. Maville will now serve as special assistant to the provost effective Feb. 1.
The new dean said that UTPA's CHSHS has already achieved great things and its programs address all aspects of the health and well-being of Valley residents. He is looking forward to being a part of the college's continued success.
"The College of Health Sciences and Human Services is already a very strong college with lots of positive momentum," Ronnau said. "It is important that a new dean learn about what has been accomplished and what initiatives are underway in each program. As dean, my goals are to be the college's strongest advocate and help create as much synergy as possible between the strengths, talents and interests of the faculty, staff, and students and the vision and mission of the college."
Ronnau earned his Ph.D. in social welfare and his Master of Social Work from the University of Kansas in 1989 and 1983, respectively. He also earned a Master of Education in early childhood/elementary education from Antioch-New England in 1977 and a Bachelor of Science in political science from Kansas State University in 1973.
Dr. Havidán Rodríguez, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, said Ronnau is an engaged scholar and has a clear understanding of the mission and goals of the CHSHS. He also said the new dean is committed to working across departments and colleges and engaging in interdisciplinary collaborations.
"Under Dr. Ronnau's leadership, the College of Health Sciences and Human Services and The University of Texas-Pan American will make great strides in preparing our students for lifelong learning and leadership roles in the Valley, the state, and the nation," Rodríguez said. "I would also like to thank Dr. Janice Maville for her outstanding leadership and service to the college and the institution. While Dr. Maville served as interim dean for a relatively short period, her contributions during these months have had positive and long-lasting impacts on the college."
Read more about the College of Health Sciences and Human Services.