Betsy Griffin

vice president and residential scholar


Betsy joined the Gardner Institute in July 2008 as an Associate Director. She serves as an advisor to campuses that are conducting the Institute’s Foundations of Excellence self-studies. Dr. Griffin, also, serves as the primary contact for institution assistance with the Foundations of Excellence surveys and participates in a variety of other Institute activities.

Betsy came to the Institute with over 30 years experience in higher education. After a brief time at Franklin College in Indiana, most of her tenure was at Missouri Southern State University. Her experience includes many years as a professor of psychology and numerous administrative positions. Her administrative positions include Department Head, Interim Dean, Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning, Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs, and Interim Vice President for Academic Affairs. Several of Dr. Griffin’s roles have provided her with experience working with first-year programs and first-year students. She was the co-coordinator of Missouri Southern State University’s Foundations of Excellence self-study and helped oversee the development and implementation of the resulting action plans. Earlier as Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning, she was responsible for the coordination of the learning community program, including recruiting and training the faculty and tracking the success of the program. During most of her career she maintained contact with first-year students by teaching introductory psychology courses.

Betsy was the co-coordinator of two self-studies for institutional re-accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association. The most recent self-study included a special emphasis on the first year of college using the Foundations of Excellence process. Betsy has made several presentations on self-study at the annual meetings of the Higher Learning Commission. She wrote or oversaw the writing of eight of affiliation status change requests. She also participated in an HLC Assessment Workshop and Assessment Academy Roundtable. She coordinated her campus’ faculty development efforts for over a decade. Her primary focus was on promoting pedagogies of engagement including active learning, critical thinking, and classroom assessment. Betsy received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from East Carolina University. She earned her M.A. and Ph.D. in Experimental Social Psychology at the University of South Carolina. Her research has been primarily in the areas of gender stereotyping, attribution theory, and negotiation strategies. She is a 1997 recipient of the Missouri Governor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. Betsy received extensive training in Organizational Development through NTL. She has process consulting experience with a variety of not-for-profit organizations.

To contact Betsy, please email her at griffin@jngi.org or call 828-449-8048.