New College of Florida president Donal O’Shea, who has the college since 2012, announced that he has decided to step down from his position at the end of the current academic year on June 30, 2021. A presidential search committee will be comprised of representatives from the student body, faculty, alumni, board of trustees, New College Foundation, and community members, and a search firm will be hired to lead the candidate recruitment process.
During O'Shea's tenure as president, New College received more than $9 million from the state to increase its enrollment to 1,200 students and boost four-year graduation rates to 80 percent by 2028. He also secured state funding for an addition to the Heiser Natural Sciences Complex and to launch New College's master’s program in data science; two $750,000 grants from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support arts and humanities and community engagement; and significant private gifts to fund student scholarships.
Before coming to New College, O’Shea served as dean of faculty and vice president of academic affairs at Mount Holyoke College for 14 years. Trained as a mathematician with a bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and a Ph.D. from Queen’s University in Canada, he has co-authored seven mathematics books, won two prestigious mathematics publishing awards (the Peano Prize in 2007 and Leroy P. Steele Prize in 2015), and held tenured professorships on the mathematics faculty at both Mount Holyoke and New College.