On Thursday, Feb. 12, Wagner College held its third annual Black History Month Scholars Symposium. The keynote speaker was Tuajuanda C. Jordan, president of St. Mary’s College of Maryland. Her address was titled, “Nature Will Find a Way.” Watch the video of her address below:
Tuajuanda C. Jordan is the seventh president of St. Mary’s College of Maryland. Jordan was appointed by unanimous vote of the college’s Board of Trustees in March 2014 and took office on July 1, 2014.
Prior to St. Mary’s College, Jordan served as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Ore., beginning 2011. During her tenure at Lewis & Clark, Jordan helped recruit an exceptional and diverse faculty, launched a center for entrepreneurship, developed a campus-wide system to increase student persistence and graduation rates, and raised funds to enhance faculty development.
From 2005 to 2011, Jordan was the director of the Science Education Alliance of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Chevy Chase, Md. As director, Jordan led a collaborative effort designed to have scientists and educators work together to enhance science literacy while preparing the next generation of scientists. She also headlined the National Genomics Research Initiative in 2008, a program that exposes first-year college students to hands-on genomics research.
Jordan entered academic administration in 2002, serving as associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Xavier University of Louisiana, where she soon advanced to associate vice president for academic affairs. Because of Jordan’s coordinated efforts with other administrators in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Xavier University was the first institution to re-open its doors for classes.
Tuajuanda Jordan earned her bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Fisk University in 1982 and her Ph.D. in biochemistry from Purdue University in 1989. She was an undergraduate scholar and a graduate fellow of the National Institutes of Health Minority Access to Research Careers program, for which she served on the subcommittee many years later. She did her postdoctoral training at the University of Cincinnati School of Medicine in cell biophysics and pharmacognosy. Jordan was a tenured faculty member in the department of chemistry at both Xavier University of Louisiana and Lewis & Clark College, and a visiting scientist at the University of Michigan in biophysics.
Her honors include being named a Purdue University Distinguished Alumna from the School of Agriculture in 2008 and, in 2009, being named a “revolutionary mind” by Seed magazine. Recently, Jordan was honored by the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Baltimore Metropolitan Chapter, with its Torchbearer Award, recognizing her contributions in education with an emphasis on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.