The University of Montana has hired a vice president for enrollment and strategic communications.
In a press release, the UM communications director Paula Short says UM hired Catherine Cole as vice president for enrollment and strategic communications, completing a reorganization to integrate marketing, communications and enrollment at UM announced earlier this spring.
UM President Seth Bodnar announced the hire and reflected on Cole’s expertise.
“UM is a world-class university and this reorganization creates the opportunity to better integrate and more effectively tell our story,” Bodnar said. “Cathy Cole has impressive and documented professional success in these areas and I look forward to the energy she will bring to campus.”
Cole comes to UM from the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, a university with approximately 15,800 students. There she serves as assistant vice president of Enrollment Services and director of Integrated Marketing and Strategic Communications.
“I am very excited to join President Bodnar’s team and to hit the ground running for the University of Montana,” she said. “With the support of the University and Missoula communities, we are going to make some positive steps forward. It is a great time to be a Grizzly. My family and I are looking forward to our move and this next chapter.”
As VP for enrollment and strategic communications at UM, Cole will oversee Integrated Communications, including University Relations, collegiate licensing, marketing, the Office of Alumni Relations and UM’s Broadcast Media Center, as well as the offices of admissions and financial aid.
Cole’s selection comes after a national search for the position, which yielded 35 applicants, four of which visited the campus over the past two weeks as finalists.
Violet Hopkins, evaluations supervisor in UM’s admissions office and a member of the search committee, said she was pleased with the hiring process and selection.
“Cathy brings an incredible amount of experience related to enrollment management – and specifically marketing to prospective students, as well as keeping our current students engaged,” Hopkins said. “I’m excited to work with her.”
UM faculty members who participated in the campus forums with the finalists also acknowledged Cole’s experience with marketing academic programs.
Jenny McNulty, math professor and associate dean of UM’s College of Humanities and Sciences, noted Cole’s willingness to create marketing plans for each department across campus.
“Cathy has a wealth of university experience, deep insight into today’s students and a vision for UM to focus on connections and collaborations,” McNulty said. “She’s a great addition to the UM team.”
Cole will relocate to Missoula in the coming weeks and will begin her duties full time in Missoula in late July or early August.