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University of Virginia UVA Arts & Sciences Default

Cristina Della Coletta Named Dean of Arts and Humanities at UC San Diego

Jun 24, 2014

A message to the College of Arts and Sciences community from incoming Dean Ian Baucom:

Dear colleagues,

As some of you may have heard over the weekend, Cristina Della Coletta has accepted a dean’s position at the University of California, San Diego. After 22 distinguished years at the University of Virginia, Cristina has been appointed UCSD’s dean of its Division of Arts and Humanities, while holding the Chancellor’s Associates Chair in Italian Studies Literature there.

Her appointment begins August 15.

Cristina Della Coletta

A doctoral alumna of UCLA, Cristina joined U.Va.’s faculty in 1992; her scholarship and leadership within the Department of Spanish, Italian and Portuguese led more recently to her service as Associate Dean for the Humanities and the Arts.  As a scholar, teacher and College administrator, Christina will be sorely missed.

Cristina’s scholarly achievements include three books published by prestigious university presses. Her book, World’s Fairs, Italian-Style: The Great Expositions in Turin and Their Narratives, 1850-1915 , won the Modern Language Association’s Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for Italian Studies in 2007.

Cristina also earned numerous teaching awards during her tenure here, including the Horace W. Goldsmith Distinguished Teaching Chair in 2002-2005, and the University of Virginia Alumni Association Distinguished Professor Award (2010). Her Spanish, Italian and Portuguese colleague, department chair Joel Rini, describes Cristina as a model departmental citizen. She has been a valuable mentor for junior faculty over the years, not only in Italian but for young colleagues in other departments as well. She served as DUP in Italian for 17 years and as Associate Chair for three different chairs – including Joel –  before coming to the Dean’s Office in 2011.

The recently approved Master’s Degree in European Studies and the Mellon grant funding that she shepherded for interdisciplinary faculty hirings were among the curricular innovations that she introduced as Associate Dean at a critical time of transition within the College.

“Given her success as a teacher, mentor, administrator, and scholar, it did not surprise me in the least that the University of California, San Diego, not only offered her the deanship, but also an endowed Chair in Italian studies," Joel said.

I will miss the opportunity to work with Cristina in the Dean’s Office but am grateful for all she has done for the College and Graduate School of Arts & Sciences. Please join me in congratulating Cristina as she embarks on this well-deserved opportunity, wishing her and her family the best in San Diego.

Ian Baucom
Buckner W. Clay Dean of Arts & Sciences