Navigating Intellectual Traditions and Charting a Bold Future for Black Studies at The City College of New York
The City College of New York is proud to announce the appointment of Dr. Jervette R. Ward as the new director of the Black Studies Program within the Division of Humanities and the Arts. This appointment follows a comprehensive national search, culminating in the selection of Dr. Ward as a distinguished leader in the field.
Dean Renata Kobetts Miller expressed enthusiasm about Dr. Ward’s appointment, stating, “As President of CLA (College Language Association), Professor Ward comes to City College as a leader in the profession. We’re thrilled to have her directing City College’s historic Black Studies Program, and we’re looking forward to some exciting developments in the months and years ahead.”
Dr. Ward brings a wealth of experience and expertise to her new role. Since 2018, she served as a tenured associate professor of English at Mississippi State University (MSU). Prior to her tenure at MSU, Dr. Ward held the position of associate professor of English at the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA), where she earned tenure in 2018. Her academic journey began at Pine Manor College in Chestnut Hill, Mass., as an assistant professor of English, specializing in multicultural literature, in 2011. She also served as an adjunct instructor and research assistant at The University of Memphis from 2007 to 2011.
Dr. Ward is an alumna of The University of Memphis, where she earned her B.A. in journalism (cum laude) in 2004, followed by an M.A. in English with a focus on American Literature in 2009. She also earned a Graduate Certificate in African American Literature (2009) and completed her Ph.D. in English–Literary & Cultural Studies in 2011.
A prolific writer, teacher, and speaker, Dr. Ward is set to release her forthcoming book, “Black Women vs. Everybody: An Intellectual Tradition of Great Debates,” published by The Ohio State University Press. The book explores how Black women have courageously affirmed their own humanity while advocating for the humanity of others.
Dr. Ward’s dedication to the College Language Association is evident in her previous roles as vice president and director of public relations. As the current president of CLA, she oversees the management of CLAJ, the association’s peer-reviewed academic journal. Additionally, Dr. Ward is actively involved in the Modern Language Association (MLA), serving on the Nominating Committee and previously chairing the Languages, Literatures, and Cultures African American Forum. Her recent presentation at the MLA Convention in Washington, D.C., as a panelist at the “Black Archives and the Future” Roundtable, further showcases her commitment to advancing scholarship and discourse.
Dr. Ward officially assumed her role at The City College of New York on August 25, 2023. The college anticipates exciting developments under her leadership as she contributes to the growth and prominence of the Black Studies Program.