The Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education announced today the selection of Dr. Charles Patterson as interim president of Shippensburg University. Patterson has served as president of Mansfield University, a State System university in Tioga County, since July 2019.  

The Shippensburg University Council of Trustees worked collaboratively with State System Chancellor Dan Greenstein and the Board of Governors in the process, to ensure a seamless transition to continue the university’s sustainability and System Redesign.  

“Dr. Patterson has built an exemplary resume of accomplishments and transparent leadership, fully understands the goals and objectives of System Redesign and how to build on the foundation laid by President Carter and he is eager to be at Shippensburg University,” said L. Michael Ross, chair of the Council of Trustees.  

Before leading Mansfield, Patterson served as senior advisor for outreach at the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Federal Student Aid from August 2017 until he arrived at Mansfield. 

Patterson brings to Shippensburg a record of growth and transformation. While at Mansfield, the university ended a nine-year decline by achieving consecutive enrollment increases while also increasing first-year retention from 73 percent to 78.1 percent, even during the pandemic. Patterson established campus shared governance and effective organizational models that brought together various constituencies to work toward university strategies and achievement. 

Patterson began his higher education career as assistant director for sponsored programs at Baylor University in 2003. Six years later, he joined Georgia Southern University as chair and vice president for research and economic development of the university’s Research and Service Foundation, Inc. Patterson then became interim president of Georgia Southwestern State University in January 2015, a position he served in for two years before joining the U.S. Department of Education. 

He earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular bioscience from University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in 2002. He graduated in 1993 from Mississippi State University with a bachelor’s of science degree in biochemistry. 

“Given the current challenges facing PASSHE, having the right person at the helm of Shippensburg University has never been as important, and I and the Council of Trustees am confident that we have the right person at the right time,” added Ross.  

Patterson will serve as interim when Laurie A. Carter, seventeenth president of Shippensburg University departs this summer to assume the presidency of Lawrence University in Appleton Wisconsin. 

Carter announced the selection of Patterson in a message to the campus community and reminded everyone as the university moves foward, “Our Ship is indeed mighty.”

Patterson will take office on July 1.