Dr. Charles E. Patterson was named the 28th president of Mansfield University on March 18, 2019 by the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education Board of Governors. He took office on July 1, 2019.
Prior to being named President at Mansfield, Dr. Patterson served as senior advisor for executive outreach in the U.S. Department of Education's office of Federal Student Aid. He previously was interim president of Georgia Southwestern State University and also held the position of vice president of research and economic development, dean of the Jack N. Averitt College of Graduate Studies, and executive director of the Research Foundation at Georgia Southern University. He began his academic career at Baylor University.
At the office of Federal Student Aid, Dr. Patterson was responsible for the development and execution of outreach and engagement efforts with higher education executives across the country, as well as with a variety of stakeholder organizations. He led strategic programs focused on higher education finance and the protection of student borrowers. Federal Student Aid is the largest provider of student financial aid in the nation, distributing more than $120 billion in federal grants, loans and work-study funds each year to more than 13 million students attending nearly 6,000 colleges and career schools.
Prior to his position with the U.S, Department of Education, Dr. Patterson served two years as interim president of Georgia Southwestern, a university of 3,000 students in Americus, Georgia. The university is the home of the internationally recognized Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving and is a strong regional asset and economic driver for Southwest Georgia.
As interim president of Georgia Southwestern, Dr. Patterson led efforts to stabilize and grow the university's undergraduate and graduate enrollment, which resulted in a 10 percent increase in the size of the student body during his tenure. He also led the development and implementation of the university's strategic plan and accompanying enrollment management plan, and increased external and internal marketing and promotional efforts to enhance institutional branding, student enrollment and student engagement activities.
Grant funding and annual giving increased by almost 75 percent in Dr. Patterson's first year at Georgia Southwestern. In his second year, the university received an award from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) for overall performance and improvement in educational fundraising programs.
During his time at Georgia Southern University, Dr. Patterson was a member of both the senior leadership team and President's Cabinet. As the university's senior research officer, he represented the university to grant agencies and industry leaders at the state and federal level. He was responsible for strategically growing and supporting the university's research and scholarly efforts by identifying and forming partnerships with federal, state and regional entities. He also worked to integrate the scholarly and instructional elements of the university's mission and academic programs in support of student engagement and degree completion and to boost the university's role as an economic driver in the community and state.
Dr. Patterson began his academic career as a project manager in the office of the Vice Provost for Research at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. He later served as assistant director in the Office of Sponsored Programs and as an instructor in the Honors College.
Among his other roles, Dr. Patterson has served as a member of the University System of Georgia's Regents Advisory Committee for Economic Development and as a member of the Board of Directors of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce. He has presented at numerous academic conferences, at both the regional and national levels, and has a variety of professional publications to his credit.
Dr. Patterson has a Bachelor of Science degree in biochemistry from Mississippi State University and a Ph.D. in biomedical sciences from the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.
Dr. Patterson is married to Colleen Patterson and they have one son, Aidan.