News and events

NSCAD University appoints Dr. Peggy Shannon as new president

NSCAD University appoints Dr. Peggy Shannon as new President

Kjipuktuk/Halifax—(December 1, 2021) NSCAD University (formerly The Nova Scotia College of Art and Design) is thrilled to announce the appointment of Dr. Peggy Shannon as president. Her appointment, for a five-year term, is effective July 1, 2022.

The pandemic has shown us how crucially important art, craft, media and design are for industry, our communities and our personal well-being,” says Maggie Marwah, Chair of NSCAD’s Board of Governors. “In Dr. Shannon, we have found an artistic and scholarly leader whose inclusive approach and entrepreneurial mindset will position NSCAD well for continued innovation and sustainable growth, and will ensure its graduates are significant contributors to the cultural landscape of contemporary society.”

Dr. Peggy Shannon

For more than 20 years, Dr. Shannon has been a professor and administrator at several North American universities, including the University of California at Davis, Ryerson University and most recently San Diego State University, where she serves as Dean of the College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts. She brings to her new role at NSCAD a strong belief in preparing students for the creative economy with real-world problem-solving opportunities. 

Dr. Shannon has a proven record of building strong partnerships and collaborations within institutions and their broader communities. Throughout her distinguished career, she has provided exceptional leadership in strategic planning, curricular excellence, teaching excellence, and multinational and interdisciplinary research within the visual and performing arts, humanities and social sciences. 

“I am honoured to join NSCAD University as its next president and help to lead it through a new era full of promise and potential,” says Dr. Shannon. “There are few better opportunities in higher education and the creative sector than those awaiting NSCAD. I’m excited to be able to help the university leverage its unique strengths, and am also deeply humbled to lead and serve the university and its renowned faculty, dedicated staff and highly talented students.” 

The Board’s decision follows the Presidential Search Committee’s extensive search since January 2021. The Committee worked with an executive search firm to consult broadly with the NSCAD community on the key qualities they would like to see in the next president.

Dr. Sarah McKinnon has served as the interim president since July 2020, adeptly leading NSCAD through one of the most challenging periods in its history as it successfully navigated through a global pandemic, pivoting to online learning and carrying out complex return to campus preparation and planning. Dr. McKinnon will remain at NSCAD into the summer, to provide guidance and support throughout the transition period.