April 10, 2017

David Bejou Appointed Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs

David Bejou
David Bejou begins his new role as SUNY Empire's provost and executive vice president for academic affairs on July 1, 2017.

(SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – April 11, 2017) David Bejou, dean of the College of Business and Social Sciences at West Virginia State University, Institute, W.Va., and a tenured professor of marketing, has been appointed provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at SUNY Empire State College.

Bejou will be responsible for the academic enterprise of SUNY Empire, including the education of nearly 19,000 students learning at 34 locations throughout the state, at eight international locations, face to face, online and through a blend of all these modes, at the associate, bachelor’s and master’s levels.

For the past 25 years, he has served public higher education in academic and administrative leadership roles of increasing responsibility and complexity. His nearly 18 years at the Historically Black Colleges and Universities of West Virginia State University, Elizabeth City State University, Elizabeth City, N.C., and Virginia State University, Petersburg, Va., have provided him with an appreciation for institutional mission. This experience building and accrediting undergraduate, master's, and doctoral degrees provides a valuable breadth of academic experience.

“David Bejou’s record of success in public higher education in teaching, learning, scholarship and research, as well as his commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, make him the ideal individual to lead SUNY Empire as its chief academic officer,” said Merodie A. Hancock, president of the college. “I look forward to working with David, and the entire college community, as we expand on the college's next 50 years of academic excellence and innovation.”

“I am honored, privileged and elated to join SUNY Empire State College and look forward to working with President Hancock, the college’s senior leadership team, its highly dedicated faculty and staff and motivated students, so that together, we will meet and exceed students' diverse learning goals,” said Bejou.

Bejou’s appointment is the result of a national search, which was conducted by a college committee comprised of students, faculty and staff. He begins his new leadership role with the college on July 1.

About David Bejou

As the dean of the College of Business and Social Sciences at West Virginia State University, he provides leadership for all academic programs in business, economics, psychology, sociology, political science, history and philosophy.

Prior to joining West Virginia State, Bejou served as the dean of Elizabeth City State University’s School of Business and was a tenured professor of marketing from 2009-13.

At Virginia State University’s School of Business, where he worked from 1999-2009, he was a tenured professor of marketing, dean of its School of Business and vice provost for administration.

From 1997-99, he was division head of behavioral sciences and business administration, interim graduate dean, and interim vice president for academic affairs, at Texas A&M University-Texarkana campus.

Bejou’s international experience includes heading the retailing program of Griffith University from 1996-97. Griffith is a multi-campus, public research university located at Gold Coast, Logan, Nathan, Mt. Gravatt and South Bank, Australia.

Bejou was an assistant professor of marketing at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, from 1992-96.

Bejou completed a Ph.D. in Business Administration, with a minor in psychology, at the University of Memphis, Memphis, Tenn., an MBA in Aviation, with a minor in aviation management, from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach, Fla., and a Bachelor of Arts in Linguistics, with a minor in English literature, from the College of Literature and Foreign Languages, Tehran, Iran.

Prior to his career in higher education, Bejou spent 10 years as a manager, area supervisor and consultant in several industries, including hospitality, financial services and aviation, where he worked as an aviation technician for 10 years on F-5 and F-4 General Electric jet engines.

Bejou is a board member of the Southern Christian Leadership Foundation, served on the United Way Board, worked with the Red Cross Albermarle Food Bank and the Girl Scouts of Elizabeth City.

He is married to Azam Mary Bejou and they are the parents of two adult children.

About SUNY Empire State College

Empire State College, the nontraditional college of the SUNY system educates nearly 19,000 students worldwide at eight international sites, more than 30 locations across the state of New York, online, and face to face, and through a blend of both, at the associate, bachelor’s and master’s levels.

The average age of an undergraduate student at the college is 35 and graduate students’ average age is 40. Most Empire State College students are working adults. Many are raising families and meeting civic commitments in the communities where they live, while studying part time.

In addition to awarding credit for prior college-level learning, the college pairs each undergraduate student with a faculty mentor who supports that student throughout his or her college career.

Working with their mentors, students design an individual degree program and engage in guided independent study and coursework on site, online or through a combination of both, which provides the flexibility for students to choose where, when and how to learn.

The college’s 78,000 alumni are active in their communities as entrepreneurs, politicians, business professionals, artists, nonprofit agency employees, teachers, veterans and active military, union members and more.

The college was established in 1971 by the SUNY Board of Trustees with the encouragement of the late Ernest L. Boyer, chancellor of the SUNY system from 1970 to 1977. Boyer also served as United States commissioner of education during the administration of President Jimmy Carter and then as president of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

More information about the college is available at www.esc.edu


Media contact: David Henahan, director of communications, SUNY Empire State College


518-587-2100, ext. 2918

518-321-7038, cell