College of the Liberal Arts appoints associate dean

July 17, 2015

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Penn State’s College of the Liberal Arts has appointed Paul C. Taylor, associate professor of philosophy and head of the Department of African-American Studies, as associate dean for undergraduate studies.

Taylor assumes the undergraduate education responsibilities formerly held by Christopher Long, who was named dean of the College of Arts and Letters at Michigan State University. Eric Silver, associate dean for research, will now be associate dean for research and graduate studies.

“I am happy to welcome Paul to the College's leadership team. He has the vision and experience to be an outstanding leader of this key college unit. Liberal Arts Undergraduate Studies is dedicated to helping our faculty and programs provide a first class education for our students. Paul is committed to that mission,’’ said Susan Welch, the Susan Welch Dean of the College of the Liberal Arts.

"I am thrilled to take on this new role," Taylor said. "Undergraduate Studies has had the benefit of excellent and visionary leadership over the years, so I have the privilege of building on strengths. My goal will be to develop the college’s insistence on the Liberal Arts Edge, and to ensure that we provide this `edge’ to our students with approaches that are both accountable and ambitious."

As a faculty member in philosophy and African-American studies, Taylor focuses his teaching and research on race theory, social and political philosophy, Africana philosophy, aesthetics and pragmatism. He has provided commentary on race and politics for national and international media, most recently for the BBC News. 

Among his publications are "Race: A Philosophical Introduction" (Polity, 2013) and "The Philosophy of Race" (Routledge, 2012). His upcoming books include "Black is Beautiful: A Philosophy of Black Aesthetics" (Blackwell) and "On Obama" (Routledge), both due out in the fall of 2015.

Taylor earned his bachelor of arts in philosophy degree with highest honors from Morehouse College, his master of arts and doctorate degrees in philosophy from Rutgers University and a master of public administration degree from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.

He joined Penn State in 2010 and served as head of the Department of African-American Studies starting in 2011. Previous faculty appointments include Temple University, the University of Washington and the University of Kentucky. Taylor also has held visiting academic appointments at the Winthrop House, Harvard University; Rhodes University, South Africa; and SUNY College at Oneonta. His honors include the Edmond J. Safra Network Fellowship at Harvard University and the Bernard L. Schwartz Fellowship at the New America Foundation.


  • Paul C. Taylor

    Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies Paul C. Taylor

    IMAGE: The College of the Liberal Arts at Penn State

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated July 27, 2015