May 2017 — Matthew R. Shaftel, the Dean and Director of Rider University’s Westminster College of the Arts, has been appointed Dean of the College of Fine Arts at Ohio University effective July 15.
“Dr. Shaftel’s extensive experience as both a professor and academic administrator will bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the College of Fine Arts, and I am excited to welcome him to Ohio,” said Executive Vice President and Provost Pam Benoit. “The search committee was most impressed with his positive energy and enthusiasm for the arts and community engagement.”
In his new role, Shaftel will serve as the college’s chief academic and administrative officer, providing leadership, planning, coordination, and management for all academic, fiscal, and personnel matters.
“It is truly exciting to be part of a culture that seeks to extend the value of the arts beyond the classroom and into the community,” Shaftel said, “and I look forward to expanding upon COFA’s long history of creative excellence as we build a brighter future through the arts in Athens and beyond.”
At Rider, Schaftel has overseen all aspects of academic affairs for a college with three different divisions, two campuses, and programs in music, popular music, theater, music theater, dance, arts administration, and art. He helped develop a strategic plan for the college while building its endowment through fundraising and partnerships with organizations including the Julliard School, Trenton Public Schools, the Kennedy Center, and the American Repertory Ballet.
In addition, he established an award-winning Center for Community Engagement. Under his leadership, the college also exceeded all enrollment targets, released five commercial recordings, and offered over 200 publicly acclaimed performances and exhibits annually.
Previously, Schaftel spent 14 years in various roles at Florida State University, including as Distinguished Professor of Music Theory, Director of the Cawthon Hall Music Living Learning Center, Director of General Education, and most recently, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Shaftel received his bachelor, master of philosophy, and doctorate degrees from Yale University, the latter two in music theory. He also earned a certificate in higher education leadership from Harvard University.
Beth Schaefer and Tom Phillips with Neumann Executive Search Partners assisted Ohio University with this search.