DAVENPORT — On Feb. 28, Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri, introduced Sandy Cassady as its next president. She currently serves as vice president for Strategic Initiatives and Dean of the College of Health and Human Services at St. Ambrose University in Davenport.
Cassady will assume the presidency at Rockhurst, a Jesuit institution with a robust menu of health sciences degree programs, on July 1. She will remain at St. Ambrose through May 31, an SAU news release stated.
“Dr. Cassady will leave St. Ambrose an immensely better institution as a result of her driven, committed and creative leadership,” SAU President Amy Novak, said. “Since her appointment to the position of VP for Strategic Initiatives, Sandy has further helped the university increase its value to students and the greater region through the introduction of more than a dozen graduate and undergraduate degree programs and micro credential courses.”
St. Ambrose will begin a search for a new dean of the CHHS. Potential changes to the VP position and Cabinet structure will be determined by the ongoing strategic planning process, the first-year president added.
Cassady has served as dean since 2010 and over that span, CHHS enrollment has grown from 650 students to nearly 1,400.
Cassady joined the faculty of the St. Ambrose Physical Therapy Department in 1994, and has served the university in numerous ways, including as co-chair of the Higher Learning Commission re-accreditation process in 2007 and 2008 and assisting in the creation of the Center for Teaching Excellence at SAU.
She also worked with the Quad Cities health community to create programs that served the community’s needs and was instrumental in forging partnerships with over 1,400 organizations that provided 2,000 clinical placements for SAU students each year.
Rockhurst is a university similar in size to St. Ambrose, with nearly 4,000 students and both graduate and undergraduate programs housed in its three colleges.
“Our loss most certainly will be Rockhurst University’s gain,” President Novak said.