The Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) announced Lori Rice-Spearman, Ph.D., as the new provost and chief academic officer.
Rice-Spearman started working for TTUHSC in 1987. She was appointed dean of the School of Health Professions in January 2016 and led the largest school of health professions in Texas and one of the largest in the nation in relation to the breadth of programs and the number of enrolled students and graduates.
“Under her leadership, the School of Health Professions demonstrated a commitment to a culture of academic excellence that spelled success for our students,” said Texas Tech University System Chancellor and TTUHSC President Tedd L. Mitchell, M.D.
“Lori was the unanimous recommendation of the selection committee. She helped form partnerships and relationships at TTUHSC and the Texas Tech University System that allowed the school to further our mission of expanding access and improving the quality of health care in Texas.”
The TTUHSC School of Health Professions students excelled with a 93% first-time pass rate for students required to complete licensure or certification requirement; had a 100 percent job placement rate for licensed practitioners; and 100 percent of the speech-language pathology graduates passed the national certification exam for 11 consecutive years.
During this time, the school added new areas of study and received numerous national awards recognizing the success of its programs. She is an alumna of the first class of the school’s Clinical Laboratory Sciences program and earned her master’s and Ph.D. from Texas Tech University.
Rice-Spearman will begin Oct. 1 as the new provost and chief academic officer. Her duties will include uniting the five schools toward achieving the institution’s objective to provide more meaningful interprofessional education, integration of telehealth and compliance with federal, regional and state mandates.
Previously, Steven L. Berk, M.D., served as provost concurrently with his position as dean of the TTUHSC School of Medicine. He will continue to serve the school as dean. Steven Sawyer, Ph.D., chair of the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, will serve as the interim dean of the School of Health Professions.