A Change in Leadership at Scripps College in California

Suzanne Keen, who has served as president of Scripps College in Claremont, California, for less than a year, has resigned from her post. Scripps College is a highly selective liberal arts educational institution for women that is one of the Claremont Colleges. No explanation was given for the decision.

In a statement to the college community, President Keen said “in conversation with board leadership, I have made the decision to step down as president of Scripps College. I am very sorry for the disappointment that this news causes. I plan to return to the classroom as a professor of English” after a sabbatical.

Before becoming president of Scripps College, Dr. Keen served as vice president of academic affairs and dean of faculty at Hamilton College in Clinton, New York. She is the former dean of the college at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia, where she served as chair of the English department.

Dr. Keen’s scholarship focuses on narrative empathy and feminist rhetorical narrative theory. She is the author of several books including Empathy and the Novel (Oxford University Press, 2007)

A native of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, Dr. Keen received a bachelor’s degree in English literature and studio art and a bachelor’s degree in creative writing from Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. She earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in English language and literature from Harvard University.

The board of trustees appointed Amy Marcus-Newhall as acting president. She is a professor of psychology at Scripps and took on the role of interim president for the 2015-16 academic year.

Dr. Marcus-Newhall earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology and American studies from Occidental College in Los Angeles. She earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of Southern California.

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