Southwest Tennessee Community College hires Carol Ash as Vice President of Academic Affairs and Workforce Development

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Dr. Carol Ash as the college’s new Vice President of Academic Affairs and Workforce Development
Dr. Carol Ash, Vice President of Academic Affairs and
Workforce Development

(Memphis, Tenn.) - Southwest Tennessee Community College welcomes Dr. Carol Ash as the college’s new Vice President of Academic Affairs and Workforce Development.  Ash begins her tenure effective June 26, 2023. 
“I am thrilled to have Dr. Ash on board to lead our academic affairs division,” Southwest Tennessee Community College President Tracy D. Hall said. “Dr. Ash’s experience and leadership in academe and in business and industry is exactly what the College needs as we solidify our role as the workforce solutions center of Memphis and the Mid-South.”
Ash has more than 15 years of senior leadership experience in higher education. Since January 2020, she has served as the Dean of the School of Health, Wellness, and Public Safety at Central New Mexico Community College (CNM) in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where she was responsible for 36 degree and certificate programs serving 3,000 students across six campuses. CNM is a Hispanic Serving Institution and the largest public community college in New Mexico, enrolling approximately 30,000 degree and certificate-seeking students in more than 100 majors and accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Before being promoted to Dean, she served as Associate Dean from 2016 to 2019.
During her tenure at CNM, Ash provided leadership in developing, implementing, and managing programs and processes related to diverse faculty, student, curricula, and facilities. Among her many accomplishments at the college were creating the School of Nursing and Patient Support, successfully guiding faculty and staff through several programmatic accreditation efforts, launching a New Mexico Department of Public Safety accredited law enforcement academy and implementing credit for prior learning pathways.
“I am excited to join Dr. Hall and the exceptional team at Southwest to continue building upon the College’s robust foundation of academic excellence,” Ash said. “Southwest’s demonstrated commitment to student success through education, training, and workforce readiness is exemplary. I look forward to being part of the trailblazing initiatives in the Mid-South that focus on upward mobility for students, their families, and our community.”
In addition to her work in Albuquerque, Ash worked as part-time faculty and then as Director of the Media and Visual Communications programs at Kennedy-King College in Chicago, Illinois, from 2008 to 2016. As the director, Ash was responsible for managing and daily operations of each academic program’s efforts, including curriculum creation, enrollment management, program review and assessment, class scheduling, recruitment, hiring, budgeting, student career planning, and establishing strategic workforce partnerships. As an adjunct professor, she launched the Emmy Award-winning “KKC Views” student news program.
Preceding her full-time commitment to higher education, Ash spent almost 20 years working as a broadcast journalist. She was a news producer at WMAQ-TV in Chicago, Illinois, WNCN-TV in Raleigh, North Carolina, WPBF-TV in West Palm Beach, Florida, and WPTA-TV in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and an associate news producer at WSIL-TV in Carterville, Illinois.
Ash garnered several notable media achievements throughout her professional television experience. She created and executed the 2010 Emmy Award-nominated “Color of Aids” campaign, launched the WMAQ-TV NBC-5 News at noon, coordinated the NBC News 2011 and 2012 “Education Nation” initiative in Chicago, and spearheaded NBC News/Kellogg Foundation’s 2010 “Finishing the Dream: Learning from the Civil Rights Era” initiative. She also received the National Association of Black Journalists Presidential Award, Chicago Defender Women of Excellence Award, Chicago United Nations Communications Award and NBC Universal Inclusion Award.
“Carol's extensive media background provides her with an unconventional lens which helps her connect with and serve her students well,” said Dr. Kiana Battle who worked closely with Ash at both WMAQ-TV and Kennedy-King College in Chicago. “Her approach is one of inquiry and innovation that yields positive results.” 
Ash earned her Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) in higher education and organizational change from Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois; a Master of Science in integrated marketing communications from Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois; and a Bachelor of Arts in mass communication and media arts from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.
Ash is a graduate of the Thomas Lakin Institute for Mentored Fellowship and a 2020-2021 ACTE Postsecondary Leadership Success Program Fellow. Among her professional memberships, she is a member of the American Association of Women in Community Colleges, a lifetime member of the National Association of Black Journalists, and a 24-year Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated member. She is the CEO of Carol Ash and Associates since 2012.