Kelli Klebe reflects on decade as Dean of Graduate School

Kelli Klebe, Dean of the Graduate School, is returning to faculty full time this fall.

Klebe was appointed Dean in July 2012, after joining UCCS in 1990 as an assistant professor.

The Graduate School evolved significantly under Klebe’s leadership, with increased financial aid for students, more professional development opportunities and closer collaborations with graduate programs, financial aid office and graduate admissions and recruitment. Klebe and the school have also established a graduate student engagement survey, started events so that graduate students can present research on campus with the UCCS Grad Slam and Graduate Research Showcase and funded student travel so they may present research at professional conferences.

With her return to faculty, Klebe will be teaching an undergraduate advanced statistics course, the Psychology Undergraduate Honors Program courses, along with being the director of the psychology honors program, and contemporary issues course for the psychological science master’s program in the fall. In the spring, she’ll be teaching the honors and contemporary issues courses as well as undergraduate senior seminar courses.

“All courses are new that I have never taught before. It will be a new adventure that I am looking forward to,” Klebe said.

Of Klebe’s many memories from her tenure as Dean, a favorite is traveling with the graduate school staff, KrisAnn McBroom and Sarah Elsey, to New Mexico for a conference of the Western Association of Graduate Schools.

“It was fun to travel together to attend a conference and learn about best practices that we could implement.”

Along with her courses, Klebe has some research pursuits she’ll be involved in as well. She’s on two grant proposals as the evaluator for projects related to undergraduate student development in research and a professional development conference for research administrators.

“I will be exploring new avenues of research that are still up in the air but may include alternative models for teaching statistics and research methods,” she said. “I am sure I will find ways to use my statistical skills to collaborate with others on campus.”

Klebe is excited to work more closely with students again after several years of leading the Graduate School.

“I have really valued my time as graduate dean to advocate for graduate education and to have the opportunity to work with so many great people across campus – programs, financial aid, graduate admissions and recruitment, research office, academic affairs, deans,” said Klebe. “After a decade, it is time to let someone else lead UCCS forward. I am looking forward to working with students more directly as I return to the Psychology department and finish out the last few years of my UCCS journey.”

A search for the next Dean of the Graduate School is being launched, with Dean Kevin Laudner serving as search chair and plans to hire by Aug. 1.