On July 29, Marymount University’s Board of Trustees unanimously voted to extend the contract of President Irma Becerra by an additional five years to 2026. This action comes one year earlier than expected, as Board members felt strongly that due to Dr. Becerra’s significant accomplishments during her tenure, it was important to ensure her continued association with Marymount on a more accelerated timeline.
“The Board is looking forward to Dr. Becerra’s continued contributions to this great institution for years to come, and is confident that her steadfast leadership will guide Marymount to the completion of its strategic goals for the future,” said Dr. Ed Bersoff, Chair of Marymount’s Board of Trustees.
“I am grateful for the trust and support given to me by Chairman Bersoff, the entire Board of Trustees and the University administration, and am proud of the dedication and tenacity shown by our faculty and staff as we pursue our goals,” Dr. Becerra added. “My commitment to this great University’s mission and legacy remains strong, and despite these uncertain times in higher education, we are ready to continue our progress and take Marymount to new heights.”
Dr. Becerra became Marymount’s seventh president in July 2018, and has since presided over the University’s creation and implementation of its new Strategic Plan, Momentum, which aims for national recognition for innovation and commitment to student success, alumni achievement and faculty and staff excellence. In the past two years, her accomplishments include quickly and successfully transitioning the University to remote operations during the Spring 2020 semester to address the safety of students, faculty and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. She has also led Marymount’s ongoing Return to Campus efforts for Fall 2020, while safeguarding the health of the University community. This semester, she will help oversee the University’s academic program restructuring into three new, interdisciplinary Colleges of study.
Additionally, Dr. Becerra’s leadership has helped result in the following:
- Advancement of the University’s prestige as measured by various organizations, such as U.S. News & World Report (moving up 21 spots to #37 among Regional Universities in the South while also ranking No. 2 regionally for international students and No. 3 regionally for ethnic diversity) and Colleges of Distinction, as well as through superior performances by Marymount Athletics.
- Substantial improvements to graduation outcomes (seven percent increase for four-year graduation rate since 2017, and five percent increase for six-year graduation rate during that same period).
- Launching of fully-online programs through a new partnership with Keypath Education.
- National accreditation status through the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP), and first-time accreditation eligibility through the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).
- Purchasing of the Rixey luxury apartments in Ballston, which allows the University to have a state-of-the-art housing facility available for upper-class students, graduate students, faculty and staff.
- Enhanced technology support through the implementation of Workday, a cloud-based ERP system, for all business operations.