California State University, Long Beach
Inside CSULB Logo

Dark To Head Up Academic Technology

Published: July 15, 2015

Shawna Dark has been named as the new Associate Vice President for Academic Technology at CSULB and will begin her new duties July 31.

For the past 19 years, Dark has worked in the field of information systems developing and implementing strategic planning for small businesses, campus-wide educational programs and statewide information systems. She has a demonstrated record of innovation and success in providing both academic and administrative technology services aligned with campus and larger California State University (CSU) goals.

Serving as the executive director of the Institute for Social and Behavioral Sciences at California State University, Northridge (CSUN), she oversaw strategic planning for all research centers and institutes within the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences.

“I am thrilled to step into the position of Associate Vice President of Academic Technology at CSU Long Beach,” said Dark. “This position provides me with a great opportunity to combine my interests in technology, teaching and entrepreneurial programming. I was raised in the Los Angeles area and attended a CSU myself. I feel strongly about the mission of all CSUs and feel particularly fortunate to be working at CSULB.

“I hope to continue to provide excellent academic technology support services that enable, promote and support student success,” she added. “Developing entrepreneurial programs is a habit of mine and I look forward to creating opportunities for faculty and staff to achieve their goals through collaborative partnerships across campus.”

As a professor and chair of the Geography Department at CSUN, she successfully developed and taught courses in all formats—online, face-to-face and hybrid—and served as a leader in developing programs in academic technology within the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences.

Dark holds a Ph.D. in geography from UCLA, with an expertise in geospatial technology. She has served as director of the Center for Geographical Studies at CSUN, where she developed an extensive applied research program in geospatial technology, creating internship opportunities for students and bringing relevancy to the associated academic programming.

Shawna Dark
Shawna Dark

“Our concept of an Associate Vice President for Academic Technology has shifted quite a bit in recent years away from hardware and software toward faculty leadership for digital teaching and learning,” said CSULB Provost David Dowell. “Dr. Dark’s experience makes her highly qualified to provide strategic leadership for digital teaching and learning. As the associate vice president, she will oversee digital curriculum innovation, student access and success with technology-enhanced courses and support for faculty and students with academic technology. In addition, she will be responsible for ensuring highly reliable classroom technology and rapid response to classroom and online technology problems.”

While Dark will focus on digital teaching and learning, Roman Kochan, Dean of the University Library, will continue to have an active role in aspects of the academic technology infrastructure. Under his leadership, the campus adopted a new learning management system, improved support for technology classrooms, planned and opened 10 new active learning classrooms, added staff in digital support, and added online and hybrid courses.

–Shayne Schroeder