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Helen Giles-Gee

Dr. Helen F. Giles-Gee was selected the 22nd president in the 191-year history of University of the Sciences. She begins her USciences tenure on July 16, 2012.

A well-respected and nationally known scholar, educator, and administrator, she brings more than 30 years of experience in higher education. Dr. Giles-Gee has a documented history of working with faculty, staff, administrators, and campus communities to implement strategies that propel institutions to higher levels. 

Since 2005, Dr. Giles-Gee has served as president of Keene State College in New Hampshire. In that time, she led Keene State through a major institutional transformation. She spearheaded the development and implementation of a strategic plan that in its first five years reached or surpassed benchmarks for academic excellence. She established the positions of provost and vice president for advancement, initiated a college-wide honors program, and oversaw capital improvements and investments. Dr. Giles-Gee also led positive initiatives in the areas of curriculum, co-curriculum, campus building, advancement, shared governance, and diversity. The results translated into annual double-digit growth in applications for admissions and the increase of Keene State’s stature for academic achievement and economic opportunities in the region.

Prior to her arrival at Keene, Dr. Giles-Gee was provost at Rowan University where, as the chief academic officer, she managed the Colleges of Business, Communication, Education, Engineering, Fine and Performing Arts, and Liberal Arts and Sciences along with the Graduate School. Her accomplishments as Rowan provost included reorganization of the graduate school, office of sponsored research and grants, and the summer school, honors, and international education programs. In addition, she worked with key legislatures and local leaders to secure $5 million to support development for the Rowan campus in Camden, N.J. 

Before Rowan, Dr. Giles-Gee was dean of the School of Professional Studies at SUNY Cortland, associate vice chancellor for academic affairs and director of articulation at the University System of Maryland, and executive assistant to the president at Towson State University. She earned tenure as an associate professor of biology at Cheyney University where she served as chair of the department. She was granted professor rank at Towson State University, Rowan University, and Keene State College. 

Dr. Giles-Gee sits on numerous national, state, and local boards and councils. She is the former chair of the American Association of Colleges and Universities and a past president of the Society for College and University Planning. Her engagement activities include service as: 

  • executive committee chair for the American Association of Colleges and Universities Board of Directors,
  • member of the executive and finance committees for the New Hampshire College and University Council,
  • vice chair of New Hampshire Charitable Foundation Board of Directors,
  • vice chair of Campus Compact of New Hampshire Board of Directors,
  • chair of self study teams for the New England Association of Colleges Schools, and the Middle States Association,
  • member Little East Presidents Steering Committee of NCAA Division III, and
  • member of Appeals Board for National Council on the Accreditation of Teacher Education.

She has a long list of academic and professional awards and commendations, including the National Award of Distinction from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, and was named as a “New Century Leader” by New Hampshire Magazine. Other honors include:

  • Champion of Education Opportunity award from the New Hampshire Education Opportunity Association,
  • Candace Women of Achievement award from the Southern New Jersey Chapter of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., and 
  • Distinguished Service Award from the Society for College and University Planning. 

Dr. Giles-Gee earned a bachelor of arts in psychobiology, a master of science in science education with Pennsylvania teaching certificates in biology and general science, and a PhD in measurement, evaluation, and techniques of experimental research from University of Pennsylvania. In addition, she holds an MS in zoology from Rutgers University. Prior to her work at Rutgers, she took pre-graduate school science classes at USciences, then known as Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science.

A native of Alabama, Dr. Giles-Gee is one of five sisters, three of whom also graduated from the University of Pennsylvania. The fifth attended Tuskegee University, the institution attended by their grandfather and many members of their family. Her mother, now deceased, earned her bachelors in microbiology from Talladega College. Dr. Giles-Gee is the mother of one daughter, Lauren, who attends college in New Hampshire. Dr. Giles-Gee’s father now resides in Charlotte, N.C.

Before I started working in community service-learning, I was one of those people who didn't have much of a social conscience. Now all of that has changed, and I say, 'Put me in the trenches to do the real work to make a difference.'"

-Student Service-Learning Leader, University of San Diego