Wood comes to the University of Minnesota from the University of California, Davis, where he has been vice chancellor of student affairs and has held other leadership roles for 26 years.
As UMC chancellor, Wood will be the chief academic and executive officer for the Crookston campus, responsible for leveraging its unique strengths in undergraduate education, applied research and public engagement within the broader mission of the University of Minnesota. One of five U of M campuses, UMC is a public baccalaureate institution in Northwestern Minnesota enrolling 1,600 students.
A first-generation college student, Wood earned a B.S. in chemistry in 1980 and a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry in 1984, both from UC Davis, a public land-grant research university within the University of California system. He spent two years as a tenured faculty member at a small community college in northern Idaho before returning to UC Davis in 1986 as vice chair of its chemistry department, responsible for coordinating curricular and co-curricular experiences for undergraduate and graduate students.
From 1991 to 2004 he was associate dean of the UC Davis College of Letters and Science. In 2004, he was named interim vice provost for undergraduate studies, a position he held until becoming vice chancellor of student affairs in 2007.
"The University of Minnesota, Crookston, is an innovative campus with distinctive strengths in student-centered education, technology-rich learning and applied research," said Wood. "I look forward to joining the Crookston community and to continuing to advance the excellence of UMC and the entire University of Minnesota system."
"Fred brings outstanding administrative and academic credentials, a passion for ensuring innovative and supportive educational experiences, and a strong understanding of a multi-campus system with a land-grant mission," said Robert J. Jones, the university system senior vice president for academic administration. "President Kaler and I believe that Fred will be an outstanding addition to the University of Minnesota leadership team and will bring a strong vision that will continue to chart a course for excellence for our Crookston campus."
Integral to the University's land-grant mission, UMC connects its teaching, research and outreach to serve Northwestern Minnesota while delivering 26 degree programs, including 10 online degrees, in the areas of agriculture and natural resources; business; liberal arts and education; and math, science and technology.
Wood, who was recommended by a systemwide search committee, succeeds Charles H. Casey, who is retiring after seven years as UMC chancellor and 26 years in other top University leadership roles.
Contact: Kate Tyler, University of Minnesota, firstname.lastname@example.org, 612-626-8535