Arant to retire from Georgia Gwinnett College
Georgia Gwinnett College (GGC) Senior Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs and Provost T.J. Arant has announced his plans to retire from the college in December 2020.
Arant joined GGC in 2015 with a five-year goal to take the decade-old institution—the first four-year college built in the 21st century—to the next level.
“I always understood my job as being the bridge between the ‘start up GGC’ and its next iteration, something we’ve called GGC 2.0,” he explained.
Leveraging his vast experience, the higher education expert led the restructuring of disciplines within the college’s School of Education, School of Liberal Arts, and School of Science and Technology. With a strategic focus on resources, recruitment, and student success, Arant worked with GGC’s leadership team to transition both the enrollment management function as well as the Student Transitional Services (now called Student Engagement and Success) function into their own divisions. Programs such as the University System of Georgia’s Momentum Year initiative, Complete College Georgia, Gateways to Completion and other strategic directives were successfully scaled to meet students’ needs at GGC.
GGC President Jann L. Joseph said that she is grateful for Arant’s sound, reassuring presence and his contributions to the college.
“GGC would not be the place it is today without T.J.’s vision and guidance,” she said. “We are so grateful to him for his leadership and for the solid foundation his work has provided. He will always be part of the Grizzly family.”
Dr. Rachel Bowser has worked closely with Arant during his time at GGC—two years in her role as faculty senate president and for the last three years in her current role as associate provost for strategic initiatives.
“T.J.’s years of experience in higher education have shaped a leadership style that is patient and steady,” she said. “He has a keen sense of timing about opportunities for growth and he has an abiding generosity for supporting the work and ideas of his team.”
With 43 years of higher education experience to his credit, Arant said he was glad that his final professional role was served at GGC, an institution that he said that prizes student success, equity, a clear central mission, and rigorous, consistent academic standards.
But now is the right time to transition—and to travel, write and spend time with his family—all the things he has been wanting to do.
“My next season beckons,” he said. “I have complete faith that the work we’ve done will prepare GGC to succeed, in the short term certainly but, more important, in the long term.”
A national search will be conducted with a goal to have a new provost in place for the spring 2021 semester.