You are here: American University Provost Communications June 24, 2021

American University Office of the Provost

MemorandumJune 24, 2021

AU Community
Peter Starr, Acting Provost and Chief Academic Officer
Vice Provost for Academic Administration

I am pleased to share the news that Prita Patel has been appointed as the next Vice Provost for Academic Administration (VPAA). A dedicated member of our community and valued colleague, Prita currently serves as Associate Vice Provost for Academic Administration. In her new position, she will lead the Academic Affairs division’s budget formulation process, oversee staff personnel management, review contracts and memoranda of agreements (MOAs), support financial forecasting for new program development, and provide administrative oversight for the Office of University Registrar and AU Central operations. She will assume the VPAA role on July 1. 

Since joining AU in 2014, Prita has demonstrated her financial management expertise, empathetic leadership style, and commitment to our shared mission. She works in concert with deans, vice provosts, and budget officers from all academic units to establish effective partnerships across campus. Seeking to better support our data-driven decision making, Prita spearheaded an effort to standardize financial reports within the Academic Affairs division in coordination with the Office of Finance and Treasurer team. She also played a key role in the implementation of our four-term calendar and partnered with various stakeholder units to revise our Internally Designated Faculty Research Accounts (IDFRA) policy to allow faculty to utilize start-up and research funds across fiscal years.

A highly productive member of countless committees, working groups, and task forces, Prita has made important contributions to the Changemakers for a Changing World strategic plan implementation through her work on three strategic imperative teams, including lifelong learning, dynamic and flexible learning, and how AU works. She also serves on the University Budget Committee and has participated in the steering committee that guided the recent Academic Affairs Realignment, chairing its subcommittee on budget and administration.

Prita previously held the position of Senior Director of Finance, Budget and Risk Management at Columbia University Irving Medical Center in Women’s and Children’s Health, where one of her major accomplishments was leading her department in a multi-year Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) conversion. Earlier in her career, she worked at Morgan Stanley in the healthcare equity research division. Prita received a BS in finance and marketing from New York University’s Stern School of Business and an MSc in international health management from the Imperial College Business School (London, England).

As her retirement date nears, I would like to thank Vi Ettle for her many years of outstanding service in the VPAA role and for the lasting impact she has made at AU.

I am deeply grateful to the members of the search committee, led by Wendy Boland, for their work to bring this important search to a very successful conclusion. I also appreciate the many faculty, staff, and administrators who participated in the search process.

Please join me in congratulating Prita as she begins this next chapter of her career at AU!