The Saginaw Valley State University Board of Control has selected George Grant Jr. as the institution’s fifth president. He succeeds Donald Bachand, who is retiring after serving since 2014.
Grant is chancellor of Pennsylvania State University-Berks and previously worked at Grand Valley State University, where he served as dean of the College of Community and Public Service for 12 years.
“We are delighted that Chancellor Grant has agreed to join SVSU and serve as our next president,” said Vicki Rupp, chair of the SVSU Board of Control. “He is a caring, committed and innovative leader with an outstanding record of success in academic program development, fundraising, and community outreach, among many accomplishments. I would like to thank the faculty, staff, students and community members who served on the presidential search advisory committee for their thorough and exemplary work in providing the Board with strong candidates. In the interview process, George’s diverse leadership experiences, his commitment to inclusion, and his understanding of Michigan really caused him to stand out to the Board,” Rupp added.
Grant is a native of Detroit and will be returning to his home state.
“I know the history and tradition of SVSU. Its people have a passion for academic exploration and achievement, and it continues to ensure that the opportunities of higher education are attainable to assist students in meeting their full potential,” Grant said. “I was not looking for a new opportunity,” Grant added, “but SVSU’s mission, strategic plan and commitment to community engagement are in line with my personal values. SVSU is committed to educating the citizens of Michigan, while also providing the opportunity for a quality education to people across the country and around the world. I cannot wait to get started.”
Grant holds a bachelor’s degree in social work from Marygrove College in Detroit, a master’s degree in social work from Grand Valley State University and a Ph.D. in sociology from Western Michigan University. He also earned a certificate from the Harvard Institute in Educational Management.
Grant will be the first person of color to serve as SVSU president. His first day on the job will be December 1.