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CCU President Benson named to NCAA’s cultural diversity and equity committee

March 16, 2022
CCU President Michael T. Benson was recently appointed to the NCAA Board of Governors Committee to Promote Cultural Diversity and Equity.

Coastal Carolina University President Michael T. Benson was recently appointed as the FBS presidential representative on the NCAA Board of Governors Committee to Promote Cultural Diversity and Equity. The 13-member committee – which includes presidents, athletic administrators, diversity officers, and student-athletes – reviews, endorses, and makes recommendations regarding diversity and inclusion matters that impact the association. It specifically reviews reports from the NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics and the NCAA Minority Opportunities and Interests Committee. Benson’s term on the committee continues through August 2024.

“I am very grateful for the opportunity to serve on this important NCAA committee that will impact student-athletes across the country,” said Benson. “Now, more than ever, promoting a culture of diversity and equity is paramount throughout our nation’s institutions of higher learning. It is an honor to represent Coastal Carolina University and the Sun Belt Conference, and I look forward to the positive impact this committee will continue to have on such significant issues.”

Benson began his tenure as CCU’s third president on Jan. 1, 2021. He also is a professor of history and is teaching a course on the history of the American university during Spring 2022. Benson previously served as president at three other institutions: Eastern Kentucky University (2013 to 2020), where he was named president emeritus; Southern Utah University (2007 to 2013); and Snow College (2001 to 2006) in Ephraim, Utah. When he was appointed president of Snow College at age 36, Benson was the youngest college president in the history of the Utah System of Higher Education.

Benson’s scholarly work has focused on the development of the research university and its impact on society. His forthcoming book, Daniel Coit Gilman and the Birth of the American Research University, will be released by Johns Hopkins University Press in October 2022.

Benson earned his bachelor’s degree cum laude from Brigham Young University in 1990 with a major in political science and double minors in English and history. He completed his doctorate in modern history from the University of Oxford (St. Antony’s College) in 1995, where he was a Rotary Foundation Scholar and recipient of the Oxford Graduate Overseas Fellowship. He also earned a master’s degree cum laude in nonprofit administration in 2011 from the University of Notre Dame Mendoza College of Business, where he was the recipient of the prestigious Father Theodore Hesburgh Founder’s Award. In August 2021, Benson earned a Master of Liberal Arts degree from Johns Hopkins University.