Shannon promoted to provost, senior vice president; Swick named VPAA

January 27, 2022


John ShannonJohn Shannon, Ph.D., has assumed the newly created position of university provost and senior vice president at Trine University. The position was created to provide additional leadership resources to accommodate growing enrollment and expanded academic offerings, and to enable the university to fully explore and embrace exciting opportunities, both short-term and long-term.

Catherine Swick, Ph.D., has been named vice president for academic affairs, filling the role vacated by Dr. Shannon’s promotion. Dr. Swick had been serving as dean and professor in Trine’s growing Rinker-Ross School of Health Sciences.

“John brings an outstanding record of achievement to the role of provost,” said Trine President Earl D. Brooks II, Ph.D. “He has been largely responsible for developing and launching the exciting new academic programs that have fueled our recent enrollment growth.  This includes laying the groundwork for a robust expansion of programs at our College of Health Professions, based in Fort Wayne.  He has also played a very significant role in the recent success we have had attracting international graduate students, which has also been vital to our recent growth.”

In his new role, Dr. Shannon will serve as the principal aide to President Brooks, handling a wide range of matters of institutional importance on his behalf. Dr. Brooks continued, “this expansion in senior leadership will enable me to work more closely with the board of trustees to activate the exciting vision we have for this university and to realize our plans for growth in Angola, Fort Wayne and online.  It will also allow me to dedicate more time to fundraising to support our efforts while planning for our new capital campaign. These are very exciting times at Trine, and it’s a testament to our strength that we are able to look internally and find tremendous leaders such as Dr. Shannon and Dr. Swick to fill these two hugely important positions.”

Before being named provost, Dr. Shannon served two stints as vice president for academic affairs at Trine, first from 2012 to 2015, and returning in 2018 after leading academics at the Indiana Institute of Technology in the interim.   Prior to serving as Trine’s vice president for academic affairs, he was dean and professor in the university’s Jannen School of Arts and Sciences for  five years.

“Trine University has grown at an incredible pace and our future is even brighter,” said Dr. Shannon. “I am thrilled and honored to take up this role and continue working with outstanding colleagues who share a passion for teaching and making the student experience the very best it can be.”

Dr. Shannon came to Trine in 2007 with extensive experience in foreign language and international education, having previously served as dean and professor at the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center in California and chair and director of the American University of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates. His career also includes serving with the U.S. Army in the former West Germany and as a Peace Corps volunteer teaching special education in Tunisia. He holds a Ph.D. in foreign and second language from The Ohio State University, a Master of Arts in applied linguistics from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the State University of New York at Plattsburgh.

Cathy SwickDr. Swick assumes her role after serving in a variety of academic roles at Bowling Green State University and, most recently, as dean of Trine’s Rinker-Ross School of Health Sciences. “I am very excited about this incredible opportunity,” said Dr. Swick. “We have outstanding faculty throughout this university and I look forward to providing leadership to foster an outstanding educational experience for Trine students.”

Dr. Swick has extensive global health experience in Asia and Europe, presenting at the University of Madrid on Best Practices in Global Health in 2015 and creating and delivering a 2014 MOOC on Global Wellness in the E-World. She has served on the Physical Therapy Advisory Board and advisor to the Health Science Association, and is a member of the American College of Sports Medicine and the International Health and Wellness Society. She was also honored by Trine with the Gerald H. Moore Award for Overall Excellence in Teaching in 2013. Dr. Swick joined Trine in 2010 and help grow the Rinker-Ross School of Health Sciences into the second largest school at Trine. She holds a Ph.D. in higher education administration from Bowling Green State University.

“I am very excited by this strengthening of our leadership team,” said Dr. Brooks, “because it is essential to support our anticipated growth. As we continue to launch new programs and add exciting new facilities to host them – in Angola, Fort Wayne and elsewhere – we need to be sure to provide the same outstanding hands-on, personalized education for which we’re known. Having Dr. Shannon in his new role and Dr. Swick in hers will be critical in this effort.”

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