Jonathan Veitch became the 15th president of Occidental College on July 1, 2009. The former dean of The New School's Eugene Lang College in New York City, Veitch is a leading advocate for liberal arts education.
At Occidental, Veitch launched a new integrated strategic planning process to better chart the College's future, strengthened Occidental's civic engagement, arts, and global literacy programs, and sought to create new partnerships with premier cultural institutions in Southern California. Under his leadership, Occidental completed the construction of the new Samuelson Alumni Center and the renovation and expansion of 98-year-old Swan Hall, which houses more than one-third of Oxy's faculty. Interior renovations to the historic Johnson Hall are underway to house the new McKinnon Family Center for Politics and Global Affairs, and the lower level of the Johnson Student Center is under renovation thanks to a grant from the Rose Hills Foundation. A 1-megawatt ground-mounted solar array - one of the largest of its kind in Los Angeles - has been installed on campus, and will generate approximately 11% of the College's annual electrical usage.
A Los Angeles native and graduate of Stanford University, he received his doctoral degree in the History of American Civilization from Harvard. Veitch taught in the English department at the University of Wisconsin, Madison before joining The New School. As an associate professor of literature and history, Veitch's service included stints as chair of humanities and associate provost before his five-year term as dean in which he focused on expanding Lang's size and scope to take advantage of its status as an urban liberal arts college.
The author of the award-winning American Superrealism: Nathanael West and the Politics of Representation in the 1930s (University of Wisconsin Press, 1997), Veitch's fields of academic specialization include 19th- and 20th-century American literature and cultural history, and American film. His latest research has focused on the history of higher education in the United States. Jonathan, his wife Sarah and their three children live in the Wallis Annenberg President's House on the Occidental campus.
- Founders Day Speech 2012
- Pomona College Honorary Degree 2012 (opens YouTube in a new window)
- Inauguration 2009
- Magazine Summer 2012: "We've Only Just Begun"
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