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Dr. Elizabeth KennedyElizabeth Kennedy

Dr. Elizabeth Kennedy was named Missouri Western State University’s sixth president on Feb. 25, 2021, after serving more than six months as interim president.

As interim president, Dr. Kennedy has worked to provide stability for the University during these challenging times, particularly by providing the necessary leadership to navigate Missouri Western through the COVID-19 pandemic. She has directed launching of several new initiatives, including esports and Gold Fridays, and expanded others, including the Center for Service. Dr. Kennedy has demonstrated a keen ability to connect with faculty, staff, and students and is deeply committed to the mission of Missouri Western for our campus, our community, and our region.   

Dr. Kennedy became Missouri Western’s vice provost in January, 2020, after being selected through a nationwide search. In that role, she focused on a number of elements of Missouri Western’s strategic plan, Pathways to Excellence, including strengthening student success, creating new partnerships and expanding applied learning.

Dr. Kennedy grew up in Kansas City, graduated from Ruskin High School and has family in the Kansas City and St. Louis areas. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, Master of Arts in Psychology, Graduate Certificate in Gerontology and Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology, Applied Cognitive Aging, all from the University of Akron.