Vice provost and director of admissions to leave UT


YoungJee Jung

Kedra Ishop, vice provost and director of admissions, is leaving her position at the University in July after working in the admissions office for 16 years.

Ishop is resigning to become the associate vice president of enrollment management at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, if approved by Michigan’s Board of Regents. Ishop began working in UT’s admissions office in 1998 as an admissions counselor and in 2009 became the director of admissions.

“It has been a fulfilling challenge to select for the University of Texas at Austin some of the most dynamic classes in our history,” Ishop said in an email. “Seeking excellence has been our challenge both in our recruitment practices and admissions practices.”

Ishop is leaving the office as the UT System opens a new investigation into the University’s admissions process to be carried out by an outside firm. UT spokesman Gary Susswein said the University will be complying with the investigation.

In a statement, President William Powers Jr. said he believes there have been positive changes at the admissions office under Ishop’s leadership, such as its emphasis on holistic review during the application process.

“[Ishop] has spearheaded UT Austin’s efforts to use holistic admissions policies to put together outstanding incoming classes and she has helped us defend our values in the U.S. Supreme Court,” Powers said. “We will miss Kedra immensely but couldn’t be prouder of her as she accepts this opportunity to shape enrollment and student success at one of the nation’s best public research universities.”

Holistic review is one of the two ways freshman applicants can be admitted to the University and is used by the admissions office when an applicant is not automatically admitted under the Texas Top 10 Percent Rule.  Under the University’s holistic review policy, an applicant’s academic achievement, personal achievement and special circumstances are considered.

Gregory Fenves, executive vice president and provost, said Ishop’s endorsement of the holistic review process and her role in its development have been one of her most important contributions to the University.

“Dr. Ishop was a national leader in developing a holistic review [process] for undergraduate admissions,” Fenves said in a statement. “UT Austin is now seen as having one of the best admissions processes of any public university in the country.”

In 2009, the Texas Legislature passed a bill lowering the number of Texas students the University must automatically admit to below 10 percent. According to Ishop, the changes were necessary because the number of applicants have greatly increased in the past 20 years.

“Modifications to the Top 10 Percent law has allowed the university to not only honor the diversity of the top students of high schools across Texas but to also fulfill the mission to identify talent and leadership across the spectrum of a student’s application,” Ishop said.

At Michigan, Ishop will oversee admissions, the registrar’s office, new programs for student success and financial aid. The University will conduct a national search for a new director.