UTEP Names New Dean for College of Education

Cyndi Giorgis, Ph.D., has become the dean of the College of Education at The University of Texas at El Paso

Giorgis, a native of Rock Springs, Wyoming, comes to UTEP from the University of Nevada at Las Vegas (UNLV), where she served as a faculty member and administrator since 1995. Her most recent post was as the UNLV College of Education’s executive associate dean for academic and administrative affairs.

Giorgis earned her doctoral degree in language, reading and culture and her master’s in library sciences from the University of Arizona, and her bachelor’s in elementary education from Chadron State College in Nebraska. Her professional journey started as an elementary school teacher in her hometown and included time as a school librarian, coordinator and director of library enhancement programs in the Tucson (Arizona) Unified School District.

Giorgis is an award-winning educator, in-demand speaker, grant funded researcher, and well-published author of academic books and journal articles. Her research interests include children’s literature, literacy and culture, and writing. Among her most recent U.S. Department of Education-funded grants is one that involves children’s literature, math and science. She has created and participated in several teacher preparation programs. Most recently, she administered a collaborative partnership with a dynamic team of UNLV scholars to support instructional and research initiatives funded by the Nevada legislature involving 14 elementary schools with a diverse population of English language learners.

“These and her many other accomplishments, including university, college and national awards for teaching, service and collaborations, will contribute to the college’s continued success,” said UTEP Provost Junius Gonzales. “We look forward to working together to support her commitment to ensuring high-quality programs and research and scholarship in the college. Dean Giorgis has pledged to continue the momentum and excellent progress the college has achieved this past year and expand the college’s contributions to the Paso del Norte region and beyond.”

“It is an honor to have been selected to serve as UTEP’s dean of the College of Education,” Giorgis said. “Everyone I encountered during the interview process and since I arrived on campus has been welcoming and gracious. I am excited to be a Miner and to be a part of the thriving campus community.”

Giorgis takes the reins from Steve Riter, Ph.D., vice president for information resources and planning, who served as interim dean since August 2013.

“Steve Riter did an extraordinary job of moving the college forward during his time there,” Gonzales said. “The University deeply appreciates his hard work.”