Campus News

Steele to Return to Bowdoin as Interim Dean of Admissions

Story posted July 19, 2005

Bowdoin College’s dean of admissions emeritus, Richard E. Steele, will return to the College in August as interim dean following the announced departure of Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid James Miller, who has been named dean of admission at Brown University, his alma mater.

President Barry Mills announced Steele’s return to the leadership position in a letter to the Bowdoin community, in which he stressed the continuation of the admissions programs and policies that have seen much success in recent years. Bowdoin received a record number of applications this year for the Class of 2009, and has nearly doubled the percentage of students of color at the College since 2001. The College has also made substantial progress in recent years in increasing geographic, socio-economic, cultural, religious, and other forms of diversity within its student body.

Steele, who directed Bowdoin’s admissions efforts throughout the 1990s, previously served as dean of admissions at Carleton College, Duke University, and the University of Vermont. Known as one of the most respected admissions deans in the country, Steele established Bowdoin’s National Merit Scholars program, initiated Bowdoin’s Chamberlain Scholarship program -- which helped the College recruit and retain students of color -- and increased the recruitment of superior students in Europe and Asia. Since his retirement from Bowdoin in 2001, Steele has served as a consultant at the College Board and has most recently taught at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. A graduate of Harvard University, Steele earned his master’s degree at the University of Vermont and his doctorate at the University of Wisconsin.

In his letter to the campus, Mills expressed gratitude to the “exceptionally talented” Miller for his many contributions to the College and praised Steele as a “highly respected professional” and for his willingness to temporarily lead “the program he knows so well.”

In the coming weeks, Mills will assemble and chair a search committee at Bowdoin to conduct a national search for a new dean to lead Bowdoin’s admissions and financial aid programs.

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