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Vernon Smith (University of the Pacific)

Vernon Smith
Vice Provost for Distributed Learning

Stockton, California

Membership Information



Dr. Vernon C. Smith is Vice Provost, Distributed Learning at the University of the Pacific.

Previously, he oversaw the successful launch of Portmont College at Mount St. Mary's (Los Angeles) through MyCollege Foundation, a Bill and Melinda Gates funded initiative where he served as the founding Chief Academic Officer and Provost. He served as Vice President of Academic Affairs at Rio Salado College, the largest public, online two-year community college. During his over two decades of service at Rio, he served as Dean of Instruction overseeing institutional effectiveness, strategic planning, accreditation, and early-college programs. As Faculty Chair for Foreign Languages, he was a pioneer in online language courses and programs, and served as Faculty Senate President. He has an extensive background in distance learning issues and practices, including effective assessment and retention strategies, and the use of big data for predictive modeling and student success.

Dr. Smith earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in Latin American Studies and Spanish at Brigham Young University, graduating Magna Cum Laude. He has a Master of Organizational Behavior from the Marriott School of Management at Brigham Young University. He earned a Doctor of Philosophy in Organization and Administration of Higher Education from the Center for the Study of Higher Education at The University of Arizona.

His research interests include high-quality, cost-effective production models for online courses, the unbundling and re-bundling of the faculty role, adjunct faculty issues, academic integrity, and teaching and learning. He currently serves on the Advisory Board for ELI. He served on the membership and data working groups for Transparency by Design, a national higher education accountability initiative, and on the Board of Directors of EDUCAUSE.

Dr. Smith has received the Dolores Brown Award from Arizona AATSP, Administrator of the Year Hallmark Award from Phi Theta Kappa, and has been recognized for outstanding teaching, presentations, and service including the Homer Sarasohn Award for Meritorious Service.

EDUCAUSE Involvement