Noma Anderson, Dean of the UTHSC College of Health Professions, Named Special Adviser to UT System President on Diversity and Inclusion

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Dr. Noma Anderson

Noma Anderson, PhD, dean of the College of Health Professions at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) since 2010, has been named special adviser to UT System President Joe DiPietro on diversity and inclusion. Dr. DiPietro announced the appointment today to the Academic Affairs and Student Success Committee during the UT Board of Trustees meeting in Knoxville.

Dr. Anderson has served as chair of the president’s Diversity Advisory Council (DAC) since 2012. This new responsibility in Knoxville, effective July 1, will pull Dr. Anderson away from her duties as a dean at UTHSC. However, she will remain on the faculty of UTHSC’s College of Health Professions in the Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology in Knoxville.

At UTHSC, Dr. Anderson has presided over a period of growth in the College of Health Professions. Founded in1972 as the College of Community and Allied Health Professions, it became the College of Allied Health Sciences in 1985.

In 2014, it was renamed the College of Health Professions. The college currently includes six departments: Audiology and Speech Pathology, Clinical Laboratory Sciences, Health Informatics and Information Management, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Physician Assistant Studies. The new name was chosen to signify the pivotal role the graduates of the college play in health care delivery today.

The college has expanded its student body, updated its curriculum with online offerings, received major research grants and boosted its community outreach. A major milestone was achieved early this year, when the Department of Occupational Therapy opened the only student-run, pro-bono, pediatric Occupational Therapy clinic in the country.

“Dr. Anderson has been a major asset to our College of Health Professions and to UTHSC,” Chancellor Steve J. Schwab said. “She has moved the college forward on all fronts. We are happy that she will continue to be part of our UTHSC family, and will have the opportunity to share her extensive talents with the entire UT System.”

Dr. Anderson has a distinguished academic and clinical history. She served as the chair and a professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Florida International University (FIU) in Miami. She was also dean of the School of Health Sciences at FIU for five years.

Prior to that, Dr. Anderson was a chair for 10 years and on the faculty for 16 years in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Howard University in Washington, D.C. Named a Fellow of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) in 1992, Dr. Anderson was on the board of directors for the ASHA from 1998-2000 as vice president for academic affairs, and again from 2006-2008. She served as ASHA president in 2007.

Last November, Dr. Anderson received the Honors of the Association Award from the ASHA during its annual convention in Denver. The Honors of the Association is the highest award given by the ASHA, and is a public recognition of distinguished and exceptional contributions to the field of speech, language and hearing.

Dr. Anderson holds a PhD in speech-language pathology from the University of Pittsburgh, and an MS in speech pathology from Emerson College in Boston. She received her BA in speech pathology and audiology from Hampton Institute in Hampton, Virginia.