Saint Joseph's University Announces New Dean

Loyola University Maryland psychologist and administrator to lead College of Arts and Sciences

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

PHILADELPHIA (January 8, 2014) — Amanda McCombs Thomas, Ph.D., a psychologist and administrator from Loyola University Maryland, a fellow Jesuit institution in Baltimore, has been named dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Saint Joseph’s University. She will assume her new position on July 1, 2014.

Thomas has held a number of administrative positions at Loyola since 1999, including associate chair and chair of the psychology department, and associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. For the last five years, Thomas has served as associate vice president for graduate studies, overseeing more than 40 discipline offerings and more than 120 degrees and certificates across Loyola’s College of Arts and Sciences, School of Education and the Sellinger School of Business and Management.  She began her tenure at Loyola in 1991 as an assistant professor of psychology.

“It is an honor and privilege to join the community of Saint Joseph’s University,” says Thomas. “I am excited to have the opportunity to work together with those in the College of Arts and Sciences and throughout the University on our shared academic goals, steeped in the rich tradition of Jesuit education.” 

A licensed psychologist, Thomas’ research interests lie in family and childhood psychology. She has studied the effects of divorce and parental depression on children, as well as anxiety disorders in children, trichotillomania (hair pulling), and behavioral family treatment. She is a prolific scholar, who has published widely in her discipline.

Thomas holds a bachelor's degree from the College of William and Mary, and a master's and doctoral degree from the University of Georgia.

"Dr. Thomas joins Saint Joseph’s at a critical time for the College of Arts and Sciences, which is poised to meet the changing demands on higher education,” says University Provost Brice Wachterhauser, Ph.D. “I have confidence in her capacity to lead the College, to quickly discern its strengths and challenges, and to encourage growth and programmatic innovation. We’re pleased to welcome a scholar and administrator of Dr. Thomas’ caliber to Saint Joseph’s University.”

Media Contact

Kelly Welsh, Senior Director of Marketing and Communications/College of Arts and Sciences, 610-660-1385,


Founded in 1851 in the Jesuit tradition of academic excellence, Saint Joseph’s University is a top-ranked Catholic University that provides a rigorous, student-centered education. With a total enrollment of 8,500 undergraduate and graduate students, SJU offers a wide-array of academic programs designed so that each graduate enters the world with a competitive resume and global perspective. This is achieved through intense academic study led by thought-leading faculty scholars, a comprehensive campus experience and robust study abroad, service-learning, internship and co-op programs. Upon graduation, nearly 100 percent of students are employed, pursuing advanced degrees or volunteering in prestigious service programs. A member of the Atlantic 10 Conference, SJU offers 20 Division I intercollegiate men’s and women’s sports. SJU alumni – over 60,000 strong - provide a powerful network that spans the globe.

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