Watson College Dean Van Dempsey Re-Appointed to State Education Commission

Van Dempsey, dean of UNCW’s Watson College of Education, has been re-appointed to the Professional Educator Preparation and Standards Commission (PEPSC). Dr. Dempsey has been a member of PEPSC since its inception. The additional two-year appointment was announced by the North Carolina General Assembly on June 30.

The education commission was created in September 2017 through Senate Bill 599 to serve as an advising body to the North Carolina State Board of Education on all aspects of teacher preparation, licensure, continuing education and standards of conduct. The purpose of PEPSC is to involve stakeholders in establishing high standards for North Carolina educators. The commission is comprised of 18 members of the education community including K-12 teachers principals, administrators and superintendents as well as deans of colleges of education around the state.

“It is an honor to serve on PEPSC and support this critical work for our state,” Dempsey said. “I am grateful to work with my colleagues on the Commission, and with our partners at NC DPI, the State Board of Education, and in the NC General Assembly. I look forward to our work ahead and doing our best to support education and educators in North Carolina.”

In addition to Dr. Dempsey, appointments announced on June 30 include Dr. Connie Locklear, Director of the Indian Resource Center, Public Schools of Robeson County (re-appointed); Dr. Samuel Houston, President and CEO of the North Carolina Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education Center (re-appointed); and Dr. R. W. "Bill" Griffin, Assistant Superintendent, Caldwell County Schools. The appointments are effective September 1, 2022 through August 31, 2024.

Dr. Dempsey is also a member of Governor Roy Cooper’s DRIVE Task Force, formed in 2019 to achieve greater equity and inclusion in the education field. He has served as dean of UNCW’s Watson College of Education since 2015.