Rick Travis, a longtime Mississippi State University faculty member and administrator, has been named dean for the College of Arts and Sciences, the university’s largest academic unit, after serving in an interim role for the past year.
Travis earned a 1993 doctoral degree and 1989 master’s in political science at the University of Georgia. His undergraduate degree in international relations is from Memphis State University. Travis joined MSU in 1993 as an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration. He was promoted to associate professor and professor before serving terms as interim head of both his home department and the Department of Sociology, and associate dean for academic and student affairs for the College of Arts and Sciences.
Travis has garnered various awards including being named Outstanding Honors Professor, Professor of the Year for the political science department for three years, and Professor of the Year for Mississippi by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education. He also has received the MSU Alumni Association’s Teaching Excellence Award and the university’s John C. Grisham Teaching Excellence Award.
Travis also has directed programs, including oversight for 15 years of the Mississippi Model Security Council. He has chaired and co-chaired several university and departmental committees, and he has served as a member of MSU’s Robert Holland Faculty Senate.