EACC has announced Robert Summers of Newport, Arkansas as the Vice President for Vocational, Occupational, and Technical Education. His primary duties will include oversight of the combined vocational, occupational, and technical programs at East Arkansas Community College and Crowley’s Ridge Technical Institute.
Summers has ten years of experience in higher education administration and leadership at ASU-Newport, and served as Dean for Applied Science. During his time at ASU-Newport, he served in various positions including Dean for Applied Science, Division Chair for Technology, and Director of Admissions/Registrar. As Dean of Applied Science, he supervised eleven career, technical, and allied health programs at three campus locations, and was responsible for industry and community relations, program development, division budget, compliance, and was a member of the academic leadership team. In 2016, he received the Transformation Award in recognition for the ASU- Newport’s Commercial Driver Training Program. Summers was formerly employed as the Assistant Principal and Business Education Teacher at Tuckerman High School, where he was also an AmeriCorp Delta Service Vista Coordinator. In 2003, he was recognized as a Teacher of the Year in the Jackson County School District.
While at ASU-Newport, Summers worked with community stakeholders to modify existing programs, and develop new workforce training programs to address local skills gaps. In addition, he wrote or assisted in writing successful grants that contributed over 2.5 million dollars to ASU-Newport’s workforce programs.
Summers graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Secondary Education from Harding University and a Master of Science degree in Educational Leadership from Arkansas State University. He is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Education degree in Organizational Leadership from Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona. He has been involved with many regional and community boards and committees including President and board member of Crowley’s Ridge Development Council, member and former President of the Newport Area Chamber of Commerce, President and board member of Cornerstone Transition Home, district committee member, former Scoutmaster and Eagle Scout with Boy Scouts of America, and former President and member of Newport Kiwanis where he was named Kiwanian of the Year. He has also served in the U.S. Military and received the Meritorious Service Medal for Innovative Training and Assessment.
“Robert Summers is an experienced educator with a great deal of knowledge in teaching and supervising in the vocational-technical areas,” said Dr. Coy Grace, EACC President. “We are fortunate to be able to attract someone with his experience to this position,” he added. EACC’s incoming President, Dr. Cathie Cline added “I am proud that such a well-respected educator has accepted this leadership role. His skill set and knowledge will be invaluable as we continue to advance as an educational institution.”
“I am excited and honored to be given the opportunity to work with East Arkansas Community College and its partners in the mission to provide educational excellence, economic stimulation, and cultural enrichment to the area communities,” said Summers. “EACC is a leader in educational innovation designed to support economic development and student achievement, and I am looking forward to being part of that success. My wife and I are eager to join the EACC family and become active members in the community,” he added.