The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Provost Susan R. Wente appointed as Wake Forest’s 14th President

Wente served the Vanderbilt community for almost two decades as professor, provost and vice chancellor and interim chancellor. She starts at Wake Forest on July 1, 2021.
Hunter Long
Interim Chancellor and Provost Susan Wente and Dean of the Commons Melissa Gresalfi walk with new students during Founders Walk on Sunday on Aug. 8, 2019. (Hustler Multimedia/Hunter Long)

Provost Susan R. Wente announced in a Jan. 31 email to the community that she will be serving as the 14th President of Wake Forest University, beginning July 1. 

Wente started at Vanderbilt in 2002 as professor and chair of the Department of Cell and Developmental Biology in the School of Medicine. She has been the provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs since 2014. Wente was Vanderbilt’s first female provost and the first provost promoted from within the university. She also served as interim chancellor for the summer after Chancellor Emeritus Nicholas Zeppos stepped down.

“I love Vanderbilt, its people and our community deeply,” Wente said in her email. “While it was not an easy decision for me to leave this special place, or the city that has been my family’s home, I am tremendously excited about what lies ahead and the opportunity to serve the Wake Forest community as its president.”

Chancellor Daniel Diermeier also sent an email commenting on Wente’s departure following her announcement. 

“Susan Wente is a singular leader in higher education, and Vanderbilt University is in the strong position it is today because of Susan and her tremendous leadership,” Diermeier said in the Jan. 31 email. “She combines a scientist’s precision and rigor, a leader’s strategic mindset and a dedicated mentor’s commitment to others. She leaves a lasting legacy on our community.”

Following receiving her bachelor’s in biochemistry with honors at the University of Iowa in 1984, she completed her Ph.D. at the University of California-Berkeley. Wente completed her postdoctoral work at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York in biochemistry and molecular biology and later was a part of Rockefeller University for her fellowship. 

Then, in 1993, Wente researched and taught at Washington University School of Medicine, before becoming an associate professor. She was recruited to Vanderbilt in 2001 and eventually came to the university in 2002.

During her tenure as provost, Vanderbilt’s U.S. News and World Report ranking increased from No. 16 to No. 14. Under Wente’s leadership, Vanderbilt was No. 1 for financial aid and No. 2 for happiest students per the Princeton Review. She also contributed to the development of the current Academic Strategic Plan, which provided more trans-institutional programming, the launch of the Office for Inclusive Excellence (OIE) and the creation of Immersion Vanderbilt

“I am, and always will be, deeply grateful to the Vanderbilt community,” Wente said in the email. “In 2002, you welcomed me with open arms, and for nearly two decades, we have worked side-by-side to advance this university’s impact.”

Leave a comment
About the Contributors
Immanual John Milton
Immanual John Milton, Former Editor in Chief
Immanual John Milton ('22) is from Minneapolis, MN. He studies computer science, economics and business. Before being Editor in Chief, Immanual was a deputy news editor. He can be reached at [email protected].    
Avery Muir
Avery Muir, Former Managing Editor
Avery Muir ('21) is from Bethesda, MD. She studied political science and economics in the College of Arts and Science. Avery has been on staff since her first year at Vanderbilt, previously serving as a staff writer, Life Editor and then Copy Editor. In her free time, Avery likes drinking way too much coffee and exploring the Nashville food scene. You can reach her at [email protected].    
Hunter Long
Hunter Long, Former Multimedia Director
Hunter Long (’21) is from Austin, TX and double majored in molecular biology and medicine, health and society. He is an avid lover of film photography, good music and all things coffee. He can be reached at [email protected].    
More to Discover

Comments (0)

The Vanderbilt Hustler welcomes and encourages readers to engage with content and express opinions through the comment sections on our website and social media platforms. The Hustler reserves the right to remove comments that contain vulgarity, hate speech, personal attacks or that appear to be spam, commercial promotion or impersonation. The comment sections are moderated by our Editor-in-Chief, Rachael Perrotta, and our Social Media Director, Chloe Postlewaite. You can reach them at [email protected] and [email protected].
All The Vanderbilt Hustler picks Reader picks Sort: Newest
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments