Reese named dean at UCA

The University of Central Arkansas has named Nancy Berryman Reese as the dean of the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences. 

Reese will represent and oversee the college, which encompasses undergraduate and graduate programs in nine departments and schools, and join a team of academic deans that implement strategies to support and enhance UCA’s mission. 

The College of Health and Behavioral Sciences includes the departments of Communication Sciences and Disorders; Exercise and Sport Science; Family and Consumer Sciences; Health Sciences; Military Science and Leadership; Occupational Therapy; Physical Therapy; Psychology and Counseling; and the School of Nursing.  

Nancy Berryman Reese has been named by UCA as the dean of the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences. 

Reese will begin the position on July 1 and will report to executive vice president and provost Patricia S. Poulter. 

“I look forward to the leadership and vision Dr. Reese will provide to the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences in her role as dean and am certain our students, faculty and staff will continue to flourish under her guidance,” said Poulter.

Reese began working at UCA in 1986 as an instructor and academic coordinator for clinical education. She became an assistant professor in 1991, was tenured in 1994, and served as associate professor, then professor, from 1995 to 2004. She has served as chair of the Department of Physical Therapy since 2004, where she directs the Doctor of Physical Therapy and Doctor of Philosophy in physical therapy programs and manages program planning, assessment and accreditation. She was the first in Arkansas to be named a Catherine Worthingham Fellow of the American Physical Therapy Association and today is one of only two in Arkansas and 250 in the nation. She is also a graduate of the Harvard Leadership Program.

Prior to her career at UCA, Reese worked as a physical therapist at the Arkansas Rehabilitation Institute in Little Rock and at Conway Physical Therapy Clinic/Conway Human Development Center. She completed an administrative residency at Arkansas Children’s Hospital. 

“I am honored to be selected as the next dean of the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences,” she said. “I look forward to working with faculty and staff as we embark on new opportunities for the college. Together, we’ll build on a strong tradition of excellence as we educate leaders to maximize the health and lives of Arkansans.” 

Reese earned a bachelor of science degree in physical therapy from UCA, a master’s in health services administration from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and a doctor of philosophy in anatomy from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. 

The mission of the College of Health and Behavioral Sciences is dedicated to the enhancement of the health and well-being of the public through the preparation of professionals, the development and advancement of knowledge and service to its constituencies. Exceptional undergraduate and graduate programs are offered in an environment that emphasizes leadership development, cultural competence, ethical practice, lifelong learning and interdisciplinary collaboration. The achievement of a culturally bias-free learning environment that honors diversity is central to all programs. Learn more at