Interims named to lead various campus offices

Vice President for Research and Economic Development
Harvill Eaton was approved by the Executive Committee of the Tech Board of Trustees and will serve as the interim vice president for research and economic development. Eaton earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in engineering science from Tennessee Tech, and holds a Ph.D. in materials science from Vanderbilt University. He has an extensive background in higher education, most recently as president of Cumberland University. He served as the vice chancellor for research at Louisiana State University, and during his time as LSU’s vice chancellor, externally funded research projects grew by $25 million.

Director of Institutional Research
Senior Associate Provost and Dean of the College of Graduate Studies Mark Stephens will serve as the interim director of the Office of Institutional Research while Tech conducts a search for a permanent director.

Director of the Oakley STEM Center
Darek Potter will serve as the interim director of the Millard Oakley Center for the Teaching and Learning of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. He holds a master’s degree in civil engineering from Vanderbilt, a master’s degree in STEM education from Tennessee Tech, and is currently completing his Ph.D. in Tech’s Exceptional Learning program. He worked as a professional engineer for more than 15 years, and has STEM teaching experience at both the collegiate and high school levels.

Director of Financial Aid
Mary Benedict, director of Military and Veteran Affairs, will serve as the interim director of the Office of Financial Aid, in addition to her current position.

Director of Career Development
Kristy Cunningham, assistant director of the Center for Career Development, will serve as the interim director of the center.

Director of the Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning
Bedelia Russell, an associate professor in the Whitson-Hester School of Nursing, will serve as the interim director of the Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning. This center was made by the merger of the Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence and the Innovation Technology Institute.