Karen Vance named assistant vice provost for institutional research

September 23, 2019

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Karen S. Vance has been named assistant vice provost for institutional research in the Office of Planning and Assessment at Penn State, effective Sept. 1. Previously, Vance served as director of planning and analysis at Penn State.

Karen Vance

Karen Vance has been named assistant vice provost for institutional research in the Office of Planning and Assessment.

IMAGE: Penn State

“I have every confidence that Karen will provide the leadership and vision the University needs for its growing institutional research function,” said Lance Kennedy-Phillips, Penn State vice provost for planning and assessment.

As assistant vice provost, Vance will lead Penn State’s data and institutional research services to support University-level initiatives and provide strategic indicators through the use of benchmarking and advanced analytical techniques. The Office of Planning and Assessment’s institutional research activities support University decision-making, policy development and reporting through rigorous data collection, analysis and interpretation.  

“Serving the Penn State community in this new capacity is quite an honor,” Vance said. “I look forward to leading a team of highly skilled analysts and researchers who have a shared vision of institutional research that aligns with and supports the University’s strategic initiatives.

“The prevalence of big data in universities today introduces both challenges and opportunities to the role of institutional research. I look forward to partnering with colleagues from across the University to address those challenges and embrace the opportunities that will, in turn, result in informed decision-making supported by advanced analytics, reliable reporting and applied research studies.”

Vance’s career in educational research, assessment and planning spans more than 20 years and includes positions at Hill College in Texas, the University of Texas at Arlington, and two K-12 public school districts in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area. She joined Penn State’s Office of Planning and Assessment in 2018 as associate director of institutional research before being named director of planning and analysis in March 2019.

Vance holds both a doctorate and a master of science in experimental psychology from Texas Christian University, a graduate certificate in advanced analytics in higher education from Arizona State University, and a bachelor of arts in psychology from the University of Texas at Arlington.

Last Updated September 26, 2019