Scott L. Thomas, Ph.D.


Sterling College

Dr. Scott L. Thomas was named the 12th President of Sterling College in April 2023. He comes to Sterling College from serving as the John P. ‘Jack’ Ellbogen Dean of the College of Education for the University of Wyoming in 2021.

Previously, Dr. Thomas served as Dean of the College of Education and Social Services and the Interim Dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences at the University of Vermont. Before joining UVM in 2016, Dr. Thomas served as the Dean of the School of Educational Studies at the Claremont Graduate University. At Claremont, he also served as Vice President for Strategy and Academic Planning.

His substantive research interests include higher education policy, science and technology, and the stratification of postsecondary opportunity. Dr. Thomas has received funding from a variety of foundations and agencies including the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and the Lumina Foundation. In addition to his scholarship in these substantive areas, Dr. Thomas has a related line of interest and work focusing on methodological issues. This line of work includes multilevel statistical modeling, social network analysis, and spatial analytics.

Dr. Thomas’ substantive expertise in higher education is further informed through a seven-year term as the editor in chief of the Journal of Higher Education, the oldest and most distinguished journal in the field of higher education and the book series International Studies in Higher Education (now 26 volumes), co-edited with colleagues at Oxford University. Dr. Thomas is also a past president of the Association for the Study of Higher Education, North America’s primary scholarly society for the study of higher education issues. He holds a BA in Sociology and a Ph.D. in Educational Policy, Leadership, and Research Methods from the University of California, Santa Barbara.