Dr. Scott VanderStoep, a member of the Hope College psychology faculty, has been appointed the college’s dean for the social sciences effective July 1, 2012.

He succeeds Dr. Caroline Simon, who has served as interim dean for the social sciences since July 2010. Simon assumed the interim position when the former dean, Dr. Richard Ray, was named the college’s provost. Simon, a professor of philosophy, was recently appointed to lead the college’s teaching and learning efforts, effective with the 2012-13 school year.

“I wish to extend a special word of gratitude to Carol Simon. She has served the Social Science Division most capably in her role as interim dean. That she will remain as a member of the college's Deans’ Council in charge of our teaching and learning efforts bodes well for the quality of the academic program,” Ray said.

Academic departments in the Social Science Division include Communication; Economics, Management and Accounting; Education; Kinesiology; Political Science; Psychology; and Sociology and Social Work.

“Scott VanderStoep is well prepared through a variety of leadership roles to be the next dean for social sciences. He is completely committed to the college’s mission, and will work tirelessly to advance the reputation of the social sciences at Hope College. I feel blessed to have a person of his many God-given skills as a member of the academic leadership team,” Ray said.

VanderStoep has been a member of the Hope faculty since 1999, and had also taught at Hope from 1992 to 1994. He presently serves as chair of the Department of Psychology. He has also led the college’s campus-wide assessment program, and was director of the college’s Carl Frost Center for Social Science Research from 1999 to 2004.

He is a previous president of the Board of Directors of Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology. In 2010 he was one of a select group chosen nationally to participate in a year-long Senior Leadership Academy by the Council for Independent Colleges and the American Academic Leadership Institute.

In 2010 Hope presented him with its Ruth and John Reed Faculty Achievement Award. His activities in the Holland community include serving as president of the West Ottawa Board of Education.

VanderStoep is a 1987 graduate of Hope College. He received the master’s degree from the University of Illinois in 1989 and the Ph.D. degree from the University of Michigan in 1992.