Dr. Troy D. Paino took office as the tenth president of the University of Mary Washington, effective July 1, 2016. A personable, student-focused leader, Dr. Paino is deeply committed to Mary Washington’s public liberal arts and sciences mission of providing academic excellence and social uplift in equal measure.
He came to UMW after a six-year stint as president of another public liberal arts institution: Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri. His priorities at Mary Washington have been:
- Promoting the values of service and community and civic engagement
- Immersing students in applied, impactful learning experiences
- Adapting the liberal arts to an age of accelerations and a global digital environment
- Creating a diverse and inclusive community as an essential requirement for academic excellence and academic success
Dr. Paino has delivered and continues to deliver on all of these initiatives while also overseeing a number of capital projects and putting the University on firmer financial footing. During his tenure, UMW has created a Cabinet-level position for equity and access, successfully recruited a more diverse faculty, and increased opportunities for minority and non-traditional learners. He has made faculty and staff compensation a priority while also investing resources in the mental health services at the Talley Center and UMW’s Office of Disability Resources to meet the growing needs of twenty-first century students.
Throughout this period, UMW has increased its retention rate and recruited a more diverse and talented study body while simultaneously increasing the school’s academic profile. In 2017, the University of Mary Washington was named one of the top producers of U.S. Fulbright students, according to The Chronicle of Higher Education, and students, faculty and alumni continue to achieve this recognition in record numbers.
The Princeton Review has named Mary Washington among “The Best 382 Colleges,” Forbes has listed UMW as one of “America’s Top Colleges,” Fiske Guide to Colleges regards this as a “Best Buy School, ” and U.S. News & World Report has named Mary Washington one of “America’s Best Colleges.”
By hiring an executive director of continuing and professional studies, Dr. Paino has made a commitment to expand UMW’s offerings to the community as well as increase the number of non-credit courses offered.
He has overseen the renovation of Mary Washington’s historic and beloved amphitheater, a major expansion to the Jepson Science Center, and a planned renovation of Seacobeck Hall as new home of the burgeoning College of Education. Residence hall renovation is continuing at a rapid pace with a newly renovated Willard Hall set to reopen in the fall of 2019.
Meanwhile, academic programs are expanding, especially in the area of technology, with the introduction of the institution’s Digital Pedagogy Lab.
Dr. Paino is proud of the activism and community service demonstrated by Mary Washington students. The Peace Corps has named UMW a “Top Producing College and University” for more than a decade, meaning that alumni choose to enter the Peace Corps in greater numbers than alumni from other schools of a similar size.
Mary Washington’s president lives in historic Brompton with his wife, Kelly. They have two daughters, Sophia and Chloe, both of whom are in college.
Dr. Paino earned doctorate and master’s degrees in American studies from Michigan State University. He holds a law degree from Indiana University and a bachelor’s degree in history and philosophy from Evangel College.
His teaching and scholarly interests include American higher education, 20th-century cultural and social history and American legal history. He has written extensively on the history of American sports and published his book, The Social History of the United States: 1960s, in 2008.
Dr. Paino is a member of the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) President’s Trust for Liberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP). He is an executive committee member and past president of the Council of Public Liberal Arts Colleges (COPLAC). He also serves on the Growth4VA President’s Working Group.
Before being named Truman’s president, he served that university as vice president for academic affairs; previously, he taught history and was dean of Winona State University’s College of Liberal Arts.