Avila Now

May 28, 2019

Darrin Smith named Dean of College of Science and Health

Darrin Smith Portrait Photo

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Darrin Smith, Ph.D., has been named Dean of the College of Science and Health at Avila University, effective June 10. As dean, he will oversee programs in the natural and applied sciences, computer sciences and mathematics, nursing, and imaging sciences at the University.

“I look forward to welcoming Darrin to Avila where his wealth of experience in teaching and research in chemistry and his leadership in higher education will be valuable resources for the College of Science and Health,” University President Ron Slepitza, Ph.D., CSJA said. “Dr. Smith’s experience as a department chair at his previous institution and his work in the private sector are testament to the strength of his scholarship and leadership.”

Smith joins Avila from the Waters Corporation, a laboratory and software manufacturing company based in Milford, Massachusetts, where he was a senior field service specialist in the Kansas City area. Previously, he taught at Eastern Kentucky University for 15 years, where he served as professor of chemistry and chair of the department of chemistry. His research interests include the development of mass spectrometry methods with ambient ionization or chromatography for qualitative and quantitative analysis on a wide variety of samples. 

“I look forward to continuing Avila’s tradition of excellence in the science and medical studies as dean,” Smith said.  “I am especially excited about learning more about the unique community the University fosters, and specifically interacting with the faculty and students to help all to realize their potential.”

A professor of analytical chemistry, Smith primarily taught at the undergraduate level, leading a mixture of introductory and advanced courses. In addition to his teaching duties, he is a member of the American Chemical Society and the American Society of Mass Spectrometry, and was formerly a member of the Kentucky Academy of Science. Additionally, he holds a professional certificate in the business of craft beer from the University of Vermont.

Smith earned his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph, as well as his doctoral degree in analytical chemistry from the University of Arizona.

Smith succeeds C. Larry Garrison Sullivan, Ph.D., former dean of the college of science and health and professor of chemistry, who passed away in January 2019.

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