Mount Holyoke Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty Donal O’Shea has been named the fifth president of New College of Florida. His appointment was announced March 10 following approval by the college's Board of Trustees.
O'Shea, who is also MHC's College's Elizabeth T. Kennan Professor of Mathematics, has been dean of faculty since 1998 and a beloved member of the Mount Holyoke mathematics faculty since 1980. A well-known geometer, he is internationally recognized for his work in singularity theory and in computational algebraic geometry.
In announcing O'Shea's departure, President Lynn Pasquerella praised his many years of service to Mount Holyoke.
"Don has been one of the most extraordinary and effective leaders this College has ever known. He is a passionate advocate for academic excellence, for the liberal arts, and for the centrality of the faculty in the life and future of this, or any, College," Pasquerella wrote in a letter to the MHC community. "Throughout his long career at Mount Holyoke, and especially during his 13 years as Dean of Faculty, Don gave unstinting support and encouragement to the scholarly, creative, and pedagogical excellence of his faculty colleagues. His boundless energy and enthusiasm were cherished by students, staff, alumnae, trustees, and the deans and presidents around the world who recognized his brilliance, his joy, and his incredible ability to get things done."
A native of Canada, O'Shea is author of numerous books, monographs, and articles, including the 2007 book The Poincaré Conjecture: In Search of the Shape of the Universe. He has received numerous grants from the National Science Foundation and other funding organizations to support both his research and his curricular work.