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Chancellor James B. Milliken has named Dr. Mary Corliss Pearl as dean of the City University’s William E. Macaulay Honors College. Pearl, who has served as interim dean of the Honors College since Jan. 30, 2016, was selected after a national search. Her appointment is subject to approval by the CUNY Board of Trustees.

“Dr. Pearl is a distinguished scientist, environmentalist and educator who has demonstrated exemplary leadership in a number of significant positions, including provost and interim dean at Macaulay,” said Chancellor Milliken. “She is deeply committed to expanding opportunities for the highest-quality college experience for some of New York’s most talented and academically gifted. Since its launch in 2001, the Honors College has been enormously successful, attracting increasing numbers of top students to a program that prepares them well for top graduate and professional schools and exciting careers.”

Board Chairperson William Thompson also expressed support for the appointment. “As I have become familiar with Dr. Pearl’s record at Macaulay and elsewhere, I am convinced she’s the right leader for our Honors College today,” said Thompson. “She and the chancellor are committed to an agenda that will not only continue to improve the Macaulay experience but find ways to expand its reach to even more deserving New Yorkers.”

The search committee that identified Pearl as a finalist consisted of CUNY trustees, faculty, students, a CUNY college president and two members of the Macaulay Honors College Foundation board of directors. Charles Shorter, a member of the CUNY Board of Trustees who served as chair of the search committee for the new Macaulay dean said, “I could not be more pleased with the appointment of the next dean. The search committee considered many outstanding candidates from around the country and always considered Mary Pearl to be among the top candidates. The fact that she has demonstrated her commitment to Macaulay and CUNY over the last few years is a huge plus as she hits the ground running as dean.”

During her tenure at Macaulay Honors College as provost and interim dean, Pearl has created and secured funding for Macaulay’s New Media Lab, new curriculums in multidisciplinary science, computer science and data analytics and new programs in study abroad and writing improvement. She has raised millions in grant support for execution of Macaulay programs. She also started and secured a grant last year to pay for an improved prehealth career advisement program.

Before her leadership at Macaulay, Pearl served as the first dean and administrative vice president of Stony Brook University Southampton. For 15 years, she was president of the EcoHealth Alliance, a global organization dedicated to innovative conservation science, where she helped build careers of local scientists and educators in 20 high-biodiversity countries around the world and created innovative research programs. The organization grew tenfold during her tenure.

Newsweek magazine praised Pearl as a leading biologist who has “spearheaded the development of ‘conservation medicine’—a scientific exploration of the links between the health of humans, wildlife and ecosystems.” She is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Pearl was a founding faculty member for the master’s program on Design for Social Innovation at the School for Visual Arts, and recently co-led a three-year USAID-funded program based at Indonesia’s National Agricultural University to transform science, engineering and technology education in Indonesian high schools. She sits on the board of Brazil’s Institute for Ecological Research and on the Academic Advisory Council of the NYC Tech Talent Pipeline.

Pearl has written a column, “Natural Selections,” for Discover magazine. She edited the series “Methods and Cases in Conservation Science” at Columbia University Press, and is co-editor of “Conservation Medicine” (Oxford 2002) and “Conservation for the 21st Century” (Oxford 1990). She has published numerous scientific papers and is associate editor of the academic journal EcoHealth (Springer). She has written numerous op-ed pieces, appearing in The New York Times, El Diario-La Prensa and the San Francisco Chronicle. She received her undergraduate and doctoral degrees from Yale University, and holds an honorary doctorate from Marist College.

The Macaulay Honors College was designed in collaboration with CUNY’s senior colleges to offer exceptional advising, hands-on internships and research opportunities, global learning opportunities and a commitment to provide the skills and experiences for each student to excel in college and beyond. In 2006, the college was designated the William E. Macaulay Honors College after a $30 million gift from City College honors alumnus William E. Macaulay ’66 and his wife Linda.

The Honors College has grown from an inaugural class of 189 to a current student body of more than 2,000. Some 28 nationalities are represented in a recent freshman class of 548, and approximately 60 percent of Macaulay’s students are either immigrants or the children of immigrants. Honors College students have received offers and fellowships to top graduate and professional schools, including Yale, Harvard, Princeton, Columbia, Duke, Stanford, the University of California-Berkeley, CUNY and Oxford. Among the awards and honors won by Macaulay students are Rhodes, Truman, Goldwater, Fulbright, Salk, Beinecke, National Science Foundation and NYC Urban Fellowships.

A unique “cultural passport” gives Macaulay students free, or greatly reduced, entrance to many of New York’s cultural landmarks and educational institutions, including plays, museums and interactive exhibits, where students extend classroom learning into resources of every kind.

Honors College students are also designated university scholars, receiving full financial support, including free tuition and special access to study grants to cover the cost of educationally enriching experiences such as study abroad and unpaid internships.