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College of Social & Behavioral Sciences and Social Work
121 Senior Hall
Cheney, WA 99004
phone: 509.359.6081
fax: 509.359.6732

Dean's Biography

Vickie Rutledge Shields

 Dean of the College of Social Sciences, and Professor of Communication Studies at Eastern Washington University (EWU)


Photo of Dr. Vickie Rutledge Shields

Dr. Shields has served as a transformative leader at EWU since 2005 in the most diverse college in the university. In 2010 she led the college and the university in one of the largest and most complex re-organizations in EWU's history. The social and behavioral sciences college was joined by the prestigious School of Social Work, Counseling and Development Psychology department, Africana Education program, American Indian Studies program, and Chicano Education program. Since that time Dr. Shields has built a premier college that is committed to social justice, interdisciplinary collaboration, global education, diversity and inclusion, and the highest quality teaching, learning, research and community engagement in social science and professional social work.

In 2010 - 11 she served as President of the Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences (CCAS), the leading international organization of arts and sciences deans. She delivered her presidential address in Montreal to an audience of 450 entitled, The Dean's Speech: Finding Our Voice through Intentional Communication. Dr. Shields has taught introductory through doctoral level courses in speech communication, feminist media studies and qualitative research. An internationally recognized communications and feminist media scholar, she writes from a cultural perspective on gender media content and media audiences specifically in the areas of advertising, television, and film. She is also an expert in theoretical and methodological approaches to visual literacy.

Dr. Shields is the author of Measuring Up: How Advertising Affects Self Image, University of Pennsylvania Press, as well as over 50 articles, chapters and presentations in media, cultural studies, and higher education administration. Measuring Up was the winner of the Award for Outstanding Research in Visual Communication in 2004 by the Visual Communication Division of the National Communication Association (NCA).

Prior to joining EWU, Dr. Shields built her early career at Bowling Green State University where she rose through the ranks, holding the positions of Assistant and Associate Professor of Telecommunications and Women's Studies, Director of the Women's Studies Program, and Associate Dean of Arts and Sciences for faculty, curriculum, and general education. At BGSU she led a successful university-wide general education reform.

Dr. Shields received her PhD and M.A. degrees in Communication from the Ohio State University, where she was named a Presidential Fellow. She received her B.A. in Communication from Boise State University who named her BSU Alumna of the Year in 2005. In that same year she completed the Management Development Program (MDP) at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

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