Dr. Carolyn Gentle-Genitty hired as inaugural dean of Founder’s College

The application for admission to Founder’s College opens in August 2024, with classes starting in August 2025. Photo courtesy of Butler University

ALISON MICCOLIS | EDITOR-IN-CHIEF | amiccolis@butler.edu 

Dr. Carolyn Gentle-Genitty is the inaugural dean for Butler’s two-year college — Founder’s College. Provost Brooke Barnett announced Gentle-Genitty’s hiring in an email to the Butler community on April 16. 

Gentle-Genitty will join Butler on June 3, leaving her roles as Indiana University’s assistant vice president for university academic policy and professor in the School of Social Work. She will spend the next year hiring faculty and staff, recruiting students and developing the infrastructure for Founder’s College. 

The search for an inaugural dean was led by College of Education Dean Brooke Kandel. The search committee, consisting of 10 faculty and staff members, was formed in fall 2023, and they interviewed candidates this spring. 

Barnett said in an email to The Butler Collegian that Gentle-Genitty is the “ideal candidate” to lead Founder’s College. 

“She is a proven leader and scholar with a heart for helping students reach their potential,” Barnett said in her email. “Throughout the process, the committee and those who interacted with her on campus resonated with her passion, experience and ability to build and sustain community. Her experience as a faculty member and administrator position her well for this role. We are honored that she will be sharing her talents with us at Butler.” 

The plans for a new two-year college were first announced in fall 2023. The two-year college, from which students receive an associate’s degree, aims to break down two main barriers to a Butler education for local high schoolers — the cost and traditional structure of an undergraduate degree in terms of timeline, course load and residential requirements. 

According to the university’s press release from November 2023, students enrolled in the college can obtain their associate’s degree with “no debt or out-of-pocket expenses.” 

On March 26, the university announced that the two-year college would be called Founder’s College — a tribute to Butler founder Ovid Butler and his commitment to increasing access to education. 

In collaboration with the Come To Believe Network, Butler looks to enroll around 100 to 200 students in each graduating class. After completing their associate’s degree, the students will work with Butler staff to decide their next steps, which for some may include finishing their bachelor’s degree in one of Butler’s other six colleges. 

The college is “co-located” with the College of Education in Butler’s South Campus main building. The application for admission to Founder’s College opens in August 2024, with classes starting in August 2025. The associate degrees offered will be announced summer 2024.


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