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Officials Announce Selection of New Dean for College of the Arts

Published: May 16, 2011

Officials at CSULB have announced the appointment of Raymond Torres-Santos as the campus’ dean for the College of the Arts (COTA). He is expected to begin his new duties on Aug. 1.

Currently the dean for the College of the Arts and Communications at William Paterson University in Wayne, N.J., Torres-Santos replaces former dean Don Para, who is now CSULB’s provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. Para was the COTA dean for eight years. Jay Kvapil, former Art Department chair and COTA associate dean, served as interim dean for the past two years.

“I am very pleased that Raymond Torres-Santos has accepted our offer to become the new dean of the College of the Arts at Cal State Long Beach,” Provost Para said. “He brings to this position significant university experience as a faculty member and administrator, a broad knowledge of the arts, and an impressive professional profile as a performer, composer and conductor. And, most importantly, he maintains a passion for the arts and a deep commitment to arts education and student success.

“The College of the Arts is one of the largest and most recognized arts colleges in the nation, and he comes to CSULB and COTA at a most challenging time in our history,” the provost added. “I am confident that he will be a highly effective leader who will work collaboratively with the administration, other deans, department chairs, faculty, staff and the university community to build on the significant accomplishments and recognition that has become the standard of COTA.”

In his new role, Torres-Santos will be responsible for leading the college department chairs and staff in managing the college’s fiscal resources and personnel; for recruiting, evaluating and retaining a well-qualified faculty and staff; and for developing effective student recruitment and retention programs in the college. He will report directly to the provost and senior vice president for academic affairs.

CSULB’s College of the Arts is the largest and most comprehensive publicly funded school for the arts in California, with more than 4,000 graduate and undergraduate students. It includes the departments of Art, Dance, Design, Film and Electronic Arts, and Theatre Arts, as well as the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music, the University Art Museum and the Carpenter Performing Arts Center.

Within the college, the Art Department is the largest department on the CSULB campus and one of the largest visual arts programs in the country. More people study art and design at CSULB than at any other public university in the nation.

Officials Announce Selection of New Dean for College of the Arts; Will Begin Aug. 1
Raymond Torres-Santos

“The College of the Arts at Cal State Long Beach is the heart and the creative face of the university, and the commitment of the administration to the arts is evident,” said Torres-Santos. “What attracted me to the campus was the unconditional commitment of the distinguished faculty during difficult times, the high quality of students and professional staff as well as the prestige of the academic programs in the college.

“I look forward to working with the faculty, staff and students to solidify the quality of teaching, scholarship, creativity and service in the college,” he continued, “and make Cal State Long Beach a solid and innovative artistic and cultural center in the region, the state and the nation as we prepare better citizens to society.”

Professionally, Torres-Santos is an accomplished arranger, conductor and pianist. Considered one of the leading composers of his generation, his works include orchestral, electronic and vocal music for the concert hall, ballet, film, theater, television and radio.

Prior to serving as dean at William Paterson University, Torres-Santos was chancellor of the Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music; coordinator of the Music Technology Center and chair of the Music Department, both at the University of Puerto Rico; and coordinator of the Commercial/Electronic Music Program at California State University, San Bernardino.

He also has held teaching positions at the California State University, City University of New York, University of Puerto Rico, UCLA and Rutgers University.

Born in Puerto Rico, Torres-Santos studied at the Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music and at the University of Puerto Rico. He holds M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in composition from UCLA and completed advanced studies at Stanford and Harvard University. He furthered his studies in Europe at the Ferienkurse fur Neue Musik in Germany and at the University of Padua in Italy. His major professors were Henri Lazarof and David Raksin.

–Rick Gloady