Dr. Andrea (Andi) M. Kent, a native Mobilian and an alumna of the University of South Alabama, is serving as Provost and Executive Vice President of the University of South Alabama. She embraces the notion of teaching, research and service, focused upon supporting talented faculty as they lead innovative research, teach remarkable students and engage in making a difference through service. Dr. Kent joins the University community in celebrating the collective milestones and individual achievements of many, and continues to promote the ongoing development of a community of inclusivity, where all voices are heard, valued and respected.
Dr. Kent served as Interim Provost from 2020-2022 and as Interim Provost and Executive Vice President beginning in February of 2022. As Interim Provost, Dr. Kent implemented the Start South dual degree program that allows students at more than a dozen high schools to get a head start on their college education. She has also supported the expansion of scholarship programs, including those based on need and others designed for active-duty military; the creation of South’s School of Marine and Environmental Sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences; and the growth of research in health sciences, engineering and business.
She also facilitated support for faculty through the navigation of the COVID-19 global pandemic and was instrumental in growing new student enrollment.
Prior to her role as Interim Provost, Dr. Kent served as Dean of the College of Education and Professional Studies, as well as Associate Dean, Director of Field Services and Interim Director of Graduate Studies in that College. Her professional experiences also include being a recognized scholar with four published books and nearly $7 million in external funding, along with many referred publications, scholarly presentations and shepherding student research.
Dr. Kent earned her Doctor of Philosophy in Instructional Design and Development and her Master of Education in Early Childhood Education from USA, and earned her Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from the University of Mobile. She began her career in education in 1995 and became a member of the South Alabama family in 2004. She married Derek Kent in 1997 and has two children, Andrew and Mary Elizabeth.
The Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs is the chief academic officer of the University and has administrative responsibility for, and proper jurisdiction over, the academic programs and the faculty and staff serving the various academic units, colleges, schools, divisions and departments. The divisions within Academic Affairs include: the Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Education, Engineering, Nursing, the Pat Capps Covey College of Allied Health Professions, the Mitchell College of Business, the Honors College, the Graduate School and Office of Research, the School of Computing, and University Libraries. Other offices reporting to the Provost include: Registrar, Enrollment Services, Innovation in Learning Center, Institutional Research, Institutional Effectiveness, and Success Center (Student Academic Success).
The Provost/EVP is responsible for programs, policies, budgets, and planning in the areas mentioned above and is charged with managing faculty recruitment and development as well as promotion and tenure. The Provost/EVP has a major role in developing academic policies and regulations, planning and developing curricula, and participating in faculty recruiting and appointments. The Provost/EVP also works closely with the Vice President for Medical Affairs/Dean of the College of Medicine to coordinate efforts related to the preparation of health care professionals.
Executive Vice President
The Provost and Executive Vice President advises the President on University policies, programs and operations regarding the campus and USA Health. In the absence of the President, the Provost/EVP makes decisions on behalf of the President. The Provost/EVP seeks input from multiple perspectives and constituencies in a collaborative manner, including interacting with members of the President’s Council to consider opportunities, establish new initiatives and solve problems. She participates in decision-making and supports the decisions of the President. The Provost/EVP provides leadership across the institution in support and implementation the strategic plan. The Provost/EVP oversees efforts in the assessment and development of policies and programs to ensure that the University is fully accountable in all aspects of its operation. She works with the President to allocate University resources in a manner consistent with the goals of the strategic plan as approved by the President and Board of Trustees.