Dedication is one of the traits that has helped Keene State College’s President Anne Huot impact higher education. Huot recently received an award for her dedication to higher education from the University of Vermont (UVM).
On Oct. 19, Keene State College announced that Huot had received the 2016 Medical Alumni Association Distinguished Graduate Alumni Award from UVM.
Huot graduated from UVM in 1988 with her Master’s in Science and later went on to earn her PhD in 1990.
Prior to holding her current position of president at Keene State College, Huot served as the interim dean and executive dean of the Graduate College at the University of Vermont from 1999-2003.
Huot then moved on to the State University of New York-System Administration in Albany, New York, where she held the positions of associate provost and executive vice provost until 2007. From 2007 to 2013, Huot worked as the provost and vice president at the College of Brockport, State University of New York. Huot came to Keene State in 2013, but defined her time at UVM as “very formative in a couple of ways.”
“I met the first and most important mentor of my life when I was there,” Huot said, referring to Rene LaChapelle. Since coming to Keene State, Huot and her partner Dr. Joanne Cepelak have endowed a gift in LaChapelle’s name.
“I would say as a person, I think it [her experience] deepened a set of values that actually go back to my parents, and the way they raised their kids, which was really about trying to do good things for other people,” Huot said. “I had no idea what he saw in me, [but] he saw something in me I couldn’t see and when I was a young person thinking about graduate school, he stayed with me.”
When Huot received the award, she said she felt humbled not only for being chosen, but because this is the first year in which the award was given for success in academic administration.
“When I got the call I just kind of held the phone for a minute, thinking. The University of Vermont and the College of Medicine have a long history and some incredible people have been educated there. I’m sure there were lots of choices, so it was really very, very humbling,” Huot said.
“You kind of know you’re going to touch the lives of people, but to be standing in an audience and hear the people from 20 years ago say those things about you, it was pretty overwhelming.”
While Huot’s background and degree do not directly correlate with her position at KSC, her experiences have given her a unique perspective in the field of academic administration.
“On the administrative side of things, being a scientist is really helpful. It allows me to look at things from a variety of perspectives, because that’s the kind of training that scientists have,” Huot said. “It causes me to look a lot at data, to [have] inform[ed] decision making and it causes me to go back and assess whether or not the decision was a good decision.”
Provost of KSC William Seigh stated he commended President Huot’s success in an e-mail on Tuesday, Nov. 8.“President Huot’s dedication to higher education, and student success in particular, is evident in the way she leads our college. Her consistent focus is on helping students accomplish their goals,” Seigh wrote.
Huot also acknowledged the help she’s gotten from other people over the years.
“In this profession, nobody does it alone. It takes a team of people to really move an organization forward and I’ve been blessed to have that, really, throughout my career,” Huot said.
KSC’s Student Body President Laura Graham lauded President Huot’s abilities. “President Huot has shown Keene State that she is a hard working individual with the best intentions for the college,” Graham said.
Huot reiterated that her motivation comes from within. “It’s not a job. It’s an advocation and a passion for wanting to make your lives different and better because you’re going to make someone else’s life different and better and I think that’s what being a good citizen is,” Huot said.
Crae Messer can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org