ASEC: Our Team

Susanne Dumbleton, Ph.D.

Susanne Dumbleton, Ph.D.

ASEC Advisory Board Member
Professor Emeritus DePaul University (retired)

Areas of Expertise: DePaul - Tangaza (Kenya) partnership, African-centered program design, instruction, assessment in undergraduate, graduate, and professional development programs.

Susanne Dumbleton is Professor Emeritus and Former Dean of DePaul University School for New Learning. She earned a PhD in British Literature at the University at Albany, with an emphasis on the medieval period. She began her teaching career at Union University College of Pharmacy, where she became chair of the liberal arts department. Her first deanship was at Regents College, a college within the University of the State of New York dedicated exclusively to adults.

Before moving to DePaul University, she studied academic leadership at special programs at Bryn Mawr and Harvard. During her years as dean, she led faculty in developing new degree programs; deepening curriculum in technology, globalization, and ethics; making all elements of the undergraduate degree program available on line, and expanding international partnerships.

One of the partnerships of which she is most proud is the collaboration with Tangaza University College. DePaul offered a Bachelor of Arts degree in Leadership and Management designed primarily for Catholic sisters working in Africa. More than 100 individuals, most of them sisters, have earned the degree. In recent years she and DePaul colleagues cooperated with the faculty at Tangaza as they made the degree program their own, approved by the Commission for Higher Education and the Catholic University of Eastern Africa. Recently the two universities have initiated a postgraduate program for leaders of congregations of women religious and a Leadership Guild, overseen by alumni, with a focus on ethical leadership.

Susanne is pleased to have worked with ASEC from its early days to keep alive the ideas of providing as many opportunities as possible for members of congregations of women religious in Africa. She has been intimately involved with the DePaul University-Tangaza University College (Kenya) partnership from its beginning in 2006 to the present. Susanne was dean of DePaul University at the time the collaboration was designed, then served as director of the undergraduate program for four years as we moved to enable Tangaza to integrate the degree into its own offerings and initiate an executive training program of sister leaders. Her expertise is in understanding parameters for African-centered program design, instruction, and assessment in undergraduate, graduate, and professional development programs. 

When Susanne stepped down as dean, she taught exclusively on line and undertook scholarship on women as leaders for social justice. Among her subjects is Dr. Wangari Maathai, whose insights into the intersection of human rights, democracy, the environment, and peace contributed to a broader understanding of social justice, and Sister Helen Prejean, CSJ, the American sister fighting against injustice in the criminal justice system. Writings on these subjects are available on her website,

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