Thomaston graduate named Connecticut university provost

Jan 03, 2014

Bette (Sylvester) Bergeron, 1979 Georges Valley High School valedictorian, has been named as Southern Connecticut State University’s provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, effective July 1.

As Provost and VPAA, Dr. Bergeron will be chief academic officer for the institution and will be responsible for the university’s five academic schools as well as sponsored programs, institutional research, the library, international education, and academic student services.

Bergeron is currently the dean of the School of Education at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, located in the greater St. Louis region. As dean, Bergeron has the responsibility of leading five distinct academic departments: curriculum and instruction, special education and communication disorders, psychology, kinesiology and health education, and educational leadership. Through her tenure at SIUE, Bergeron has focused on student access and retention through initiatives that have included articulated collaborations with regional community college partners, technology-enhanced courses, and evening and three-year options for key programs. The SOE houses the University’s only research doctorate, the Ed.D. in educational leadership.

Also housed within the SOE are the Speech-Language Hearing Center, Weight Management Clinic, Attention and Behavior Disorders Clinic, and Cougar Literacy Clinic which provide students and faculty opportunities for experiential learning, community service, and applied research. Two long-standing grants are also housed within the School: the Southern Illinois Professional Development Center, which provides critical support for adult learners across the state, and the Library of Congress’ Teaching with Primary Sources. In addition, Bergeron has assumed full governance responsibility for the University’s Charter High School, a public school that enrolls students within the district boundaries of East St. Louis, Ill., a diverse and underserved urban community.

Bergeron has published several articles in professional journals and has made numerous conference presentations on her research, which includes qualitative studies focused on accountability in higher education, effective educator preparation, and early literacy instruction. Prior to her appointment at SIUE, Bergeron led the development of educator preparation programs at Arizona State University’s Polytechnic campus, and served as a faculty member and program chairman at Purdue University Calumet. She received her doctorate and master's degrees at Purdue University and her bachelor's at the University of Maine. Bergeron began her career in education as a second grade teacher in Veazie.

Bergeron is married to Dr. Donald Bergeron, originally from Saco, and is the daughter of Kay Sylvester and the late Harlan Sylvester of Thomaston.

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