Sun Devil Athletics posts highest APR score to date

June 11, 2013

Baseball, tennis in top 10 percent nationally in APR

The NCAA's annual Academic Progress Rate (APR) report was announced June 11 with Arizona State University posting its highest average APR score to date for all sports – 980 – and an average score of 988 for women’s teams. pitchfork flag Download Full Image

Baseball and women’s tennis received public recognition for their rank in the nation’s top 10 percent. The baseball program has improved greatly from just a few years ago, going from last place to second in the conference, trailing only Stanford. Nine ASU teams finished in the top third of the Pac-12 Conference and nine teams had a single year APR of 1000 – or 100 percent – in 2011-2012, including baseball and men’s basketball.

“We are extremely proud of the outstanding work our coaches and Office of Student-Athlete Development have done in leading our student-athletes in the classroom. We won’t stop here and want the scores to keep trending in the same great direction,” said Steve Patterson, vice president for University Athletics.

“We are proud that we are among the leaders in Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year winners every year, produce Academic All-Americans and are graduating Sun Devil student-athletes at all-time highs,” Patterson said. “Every Sun Devil Club member, fan and alumni can be proud of the work being done by our OSAD staff, led by former Sun Devil student-athletes like Jean Boyd, Patrice Feulner and Natalie Thackrah (Burgess).”

Since the APR measurement began during the 2003-2004 academic year, ASU’s average for all sports has gone from 937 to the most current all-sport average of 980 for 2011-2012. The latest APR report reflected ASU as fourth best in the Pac-12 Conference, just a fraction behind Washington (983) and Utah (981).

For the sixth consecutive year, all 21 of ASU’s athletic teams have exceeded the minimum APR scores for the NCAA’s most recent four-year reporting period. Women’s tennis led the way with a 1000 multi-year average, an accomplishment it has achieved for nine consecutive years.

“We are pleased to report the continued progress of Sun Devil student-athlete academic success, " said Jean Boyd, senior associate athletic director for Student-Athlete Development. "High APR scores translate into high graduation rates in a few years and it is exciting to see the collective vision of our student-athletes, coaches, academic coaches and the university being realized. Many of our sports teams are amongst the best in the country in their sport and academically.”

Lisa Robbins

editor/publisher, Media Relations and Strategic Communications


Andrew Webber named new vice provost for graduate education

June 12, 2013

Arizona State University professor of molecular and cellular biosciences Andrew Webber has been named vice provost for graduate education. He was previously associate vice provost for graduate support programs in the Graduate College.

As vice provost for graduate education, Webber will provide central leadership, in collaboration with the other deans, to foster the highest level of excellence and diversity in ASU’s graduate programs. He will be responsible for making recommendations on new curricular programs and also will assist the deans and the provost in all issues connected to graduate students from admissions through graduation. Andrew Webber Download Full Image

“Professor Webber has proven himself as an academic leader in the graduate college, as well as in the School of Life Sciences,” said ASU Executive Vice President and Provost Elizabeth D. Phillips. “He has provided exceptional service to the university and is the perfect person to work with the units in establishing and maintaining superb graduate programs.”

As associate vice provost, a position he held since 2007, Webber was responsible for oversight of graduate support initiatives, including university block grants, research and dissertation fellowships, academic program reviews and accreditation, center and institute reviews, and graduate diversity initiatives.

Previously, Webber served as associate dean of the Division of Graduate Studies, director of the Center for the Study of Early Events in Photosynthesis and associate director for the School of Life Sciences. 

“It is an honor to have this opportunity to continue to serve ASU's graduate students as vice provost. I sincerely look forward to working with our outstanding faculty and staff as we continue to advance graduate education at ASU,” Webber said.

Webber has been a member of several National Science Foundation and United States Department of Agriculture grant review panels, and currently serves as associate editor for the international journals, Photosynthesis Research and PLoS One.

Webber’s research in the School of Life Sciences focuses on the molecular mechanisms of photosynthetic energy transduction and chloroplast development. A long-standing project has focused on understanding relationships between protein structure and function in photosynthetic systems. In particular, his students have investigated control of energy and electron transfer pathways in photosynthetic organisms using a range of molecular and biophysical approaches. 

Webber received his bachelor's in biological chemistry and his doctorate in biology from the University of Essex, Colchester, UK.

Sharon Keeler