New Stark dean lives for college culture

illian Kramer


Credit: Beth Rankin

Betsy Boze grew up at college.

Boze, who will begin her new position as Kent State Stark Campus’s dean on July 15, is at home on any college campus because she was raised on one.

“I grew up in Shreveport, Louisiana,” Boze said. “Until I was six, we lived on the campus of Centenary College where my father was the dean.”

While most children are raised on unworldly games of dress-up and other dreams, Boze grew up in the world of academia.

“Having a college campus as my playground and growing up in an academic household clearly influenced what I have done and who I am,” Boze said. “Learning and education were always valued and an expectation. We always had globes, maps, magazines and reference books around the house. My parents took advantage of ‘teaching moments’ and in the dark ages before the Internet, referred me and my questions to the appropriate dictionary, encyclopedia or almanac.”

Boze’s academic growth was also nurtured outside her home through her childhood education.

“I attended an amazing small school as a child where the teachers were prohibited from telling a child that they ‘can’t’ do something,” Boze said. “There were rules, but not limits to our ambitions and abilities. This attitude made almost everyone go on to really fascinating careers and lives.”

Boze went on to attain a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Southern Methodist University. College went by quickly for her, completing her undergraduate education in three years. However, she said she didn’t miss out on anything.

“I was pretty focused on my studies,” Boze said. “I lived on campus in the dormitory for two years and worked in the psychology department. I tried to do interesting things over the summer. I taught swimming, and one summer I worked in a gift shop in Lucerne, Switzerland.”

After earning her bachelor’s degree, Boze earned an MBA and a doctoral degree in marketing.

Boze is leaving her position as the Dean of the School of Business at the University of Texas at Brownsville, a position she has held for 11 years, in order to come to Kent State.

Boze said she is ready to “accept the exciting challenges and opportunities of being campus CEO at Kent Stark.”

“This is a wonderful opportunity to work with the faculty, students, staff, alumni and community to make a great university a significant university,” Boze said.

Boze said she believes her “many years of higher education administrative experience in combined universities and community colleges” will make her an asset to Kent State.

“My networks will help to raise the regional and national profile of Kent Stark,” Boze said. “I am very engaged in every community where I have lived and plan to become involved with Canton and Northeast Ohio.”

While she has engaged herself in communities in several states — including Alaska — as well as Germany, Italy and Japan, Boze said she is looking forward to moving to Canton.

“I really like what I have seen of the region and am enthusiastic about learning more about the area,” Boze said.

Boze’s enthusiasm for life and new places seems to have rubbed off on her three children. Her son Christopher is a fishing guide in Alaska, her daughter Broox is beginning a Ph.D. program in zoology at Colorado State University, and her youngest son, Lee-Gray, is a junior at the University of Montana and works for the National Park Service.

And perhaps a bit of her children’s love for the outdoors has rubbed off on Boze.

“I love the outdoors and I hike, climb, canoe and ski,” Boze said. “But more often I have to settle for roller blading or swimming laps.”

Contact international students and regional campus reporter Jillian Kramer at [email protected].