California University of Pennsylvania welcomes Dr. Kristen Majocha, who will serve as dean of the College of Liberal Arts beginning July 2.
Majocha comes to California from the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, where she was the assistant to the vice president of academic affairs and an associate professor in the Communications Department.
“The liberal arts are the beating heart of any institution,” she says. “My communication background will be important to helping the College of Liberal Arts coalesce and form a strong identity on this campus.”
A U.S. Navy veteran, Majocha holds a Ph.D. in Rhetoric, with emphases on interpersonal, intercultural and organizational communication and communications ethics, from Duquesne University. She earned an M.A. in Rhetoric and the Philosophy of Communication, also at Duquesne, and a B.A. in Communication from Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania.
“I’m looking forward to giving back to the State System, which has given so much to me,” says Majocha, who graduated from Ford City (Pa.) High School and was a first-generation college student.
At Pitt-Johnstown, Majocha taught a variety of communication courses, co-chaired the Communication Department from 2015-2016, and served as director of International Program Support and Services from 2016-2017, when she moved into her role in academic affairs.
She is editor of the Eastern Communication Association’s Qualitative Research Reports in Communication and a past president of both the Religious Communication Association and the Pennsylvania Communication Association.
She received the Ecroyd Teaching Excellence Award from the Eastern Communication Association in 2017, and the Caroll Arnold Distinguished Service Award from the Pennsylvania Communication Association in 2015.
“Dr. Majocha is widely recognized as a scholar within her discipline, and she brings a high level of energy and enthusiasm to the role of dean,” says Dr. Bruce Barnhart, Cal U’s provost and senior vice president for Academic Affairs.
“We look forward to having her join us.”
Majocha succeeds Dr. Mohamed Yamba, who retired in March after more than 29 years as a faculty member, department chair and dean at Cal U. Dr. Yugo Ikach, co-chair of the Music and Theatre Department, is currently serving as interim dean.
About the College of Liberal Arts
The College of Liberal Arts houses the departments of Art and Languages; Communication, Design and Culture; Criminal Justice; English; History, Politics, Society and Law; Music and Theatre; and Psychology.
About 1,600 students were enrolled in majors within the College of Liberal Arts in fall 2017, and all Cal U students take liberal arts courses to fulfill their general education requirements.