Dr. Mary Ann Rankin is currently the Senior Vice President and Provost of the University of Maryland, College Park. Since arriving at UMD in October 2012, Rankin has launched a number of initiatives, including the development of the Teaching and Learning Transformation Center (TLTC)—to be housed in the sustainably designed Edward St. John Learning and Teaching Center—which seeks to enhance teaching, improve student outcomes, and advance Maryland as an international leader in evidence-based education. Another initiative, the First-Year Innovation and Research Experience (FIRE) provides new students with an authentic research experience, broad mentorship, and institutional connections that impact academic success, personal resilience, and professional development.
Rankin has also played a major role in implementing key features of the powerful collaboration between the University of Maryland, College Park and the University of Maryland, Baltimore called MPowering the State, which will result in attracting even more world-class faculty and scientists, enrich the educational experience for our students, boost research and create more technology transfer, and fuel the state’s economy. Two other initiatives ongoing during Rankin’s tenure will be enhanced by MPower: the new Cole Field House will feature a state-of-the-art Center for Sports Medicine, Health, and Human Performance which will team UMD’s School of Engineering, School of Public Health, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and Division of Athletics with Baltimore’s School of Medicine; and the Brendan Iribe Center for Computer Science and Innovation will be a hub for technology at the main gates of UMD that will create advances and innovation, give rise to new tech companies, and support the state’s economic development.
Rankin’s previous positions include serving as CEO of the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI), Dean of the College of Natural Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin, and Chair of Biological Sciences (UT). As Dean, Rankin and her administrative team created numerous successful undergraduate programs including the Freshman Research Initiative and the UTeach program for STEM teacher preparation. UTeach has been cited as a national model for by several state governors and Presidents Obama and G.W. Bush and is now being replicated in partnership with NMSI in 34 universities in 16 states. Rankin earned a BS in biology and chemistry from Louisiana State University (1966) and a Ph.D. in physiology and behavior from the University of Iowa (1972).
In April of 2016, Rankin was named to the National Academy of Arts and Sciences. She serves on several non-profit boards including the Southwest Research Institute and the Science Education Advisory Board of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.