Posted on May 4, 2021 by COLFA

UTSA Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Kimberly Andrews Espy today announced the selection of Glenn A. Martinez, professor of Hispanic linguistics at The Ohio State University, as the dean of the College of Liberal and Fine Arts and the Stumberg Distinguished University Chair. He begins his duties July 1.
“The opportunities are endless and the impact in the community is palpable.” - Dean Martinez

“The opportunities are endless and the impact in the community is palpable.” - Dean Martinez

“Glenn Martinez is a highly accomplished administrator and scholar with a proven commitment to both promoting interdisciplinary collaboration and advancing diversity and inclusion,” Espy said. “He has a dynamic and impactful vision for coalescing a shared identity among—and creating opportunities between—our liberal arts, humanities and fine arts disciplines. We are excited for him to return to Texas and the UT System to join our academic leadership team.”

"I thank the search committee and committee chair Lisa Montoya for their exceptional work,” Espy continued, “as well as Sean Kelly for his extraordinary service as interim dean and his dedication in leading the COLFA visioning process this year in conjunction with the dean search.”

The visioning exercise focused on identifying COLFA’s strengths and opportunities for internal and external partnerships to support the university and serve the San Antonio community. Ten visioning task force members also served on the dean search committee, including Montoya.

“Dr. Martinez deeply appreciates and embraces COLFA’s role in focusing on the human experience, and he has articulated a strong vision for expanding on that focus by creating new knowledge around how life is experienced in different ways by diverse populations,” said Montoya, vice provost for global initiatives.

At Ohio State, an R1 research university and member of the American Association of Universities, Martinez has served the last five years as director of the Center for Languages, Literatures and Cultures. The CLLC collaborates with the university’s multiple language departments to offer programming to undergraduate and graduate students to support their success in the global economy, including interdisciplinary research opportunities, professional training, and outreach projects. The center also serves as a pipeline to the university for second language and heritage language students throughout Ohio. In his role as CLLC director, Martinez further initiated a working group from across seven academic departments to develop a framework for heritage languages at Ohio State.

From 2013 to 2016, Martinez served as chair of the university’s Department of Spanish and Portuguese. As chair, he initiated a dual-enrollment Spanish for heritage learners program for high achieving Latino high school students. Since joining Ohio State in 2013, Martinez has also served as an adjunct professor in the College of Nursing and a member of the Cancer Control Program at the James Comprehensive Cancer Center, and is an investigator on several grants from the National Institutes of Health.

Prior to Ohio State, Martinez served as professor of Spanish linguistics at the University of Texas–Pan American, where he held leadership roles as assistant dean of the College of Arts and Humanities, chair of the Department of Modern Languages and Literature, and executive director of the Office of International Programs. At Pan American, Martinez led the development of the nation’s first minor in medical Spanish for heritage learners, which was recognized by Excelencia in Education in 2011 as a best practice for improving Latino achievement in higher education and contributing to Latino success in health professions.

He has held faculty roles at the University of Arizona, where he also served as director of the Spanish for Heritage Learners Program, and the University of Texas at Brownsville.

Dr. Martinez’s expertise is in sociolinguistics and applied linguistics of Spanish-speaking communities in the U.S. and along the U.S.-Mexico border. His current area of focus is on language and health care, and he has published extensively on language policies in the health delivery system, on linguistic practices of Spanish-speaking patients and providers in healthcare settings, and on the development and evaluation of language pedagogy for healthcare professionals. In 2020, he published the book Spanish in Healthcare: Policy, Practice and Pedagogy in Latino Health (Routledge) and co-authored Tension and Contention in Language Education for Latinxs in the United States: Experience and Ethics in Teaching and Learning (Routledge).

His research has been funded the U.S. Department of Education, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Institutes of Health, and the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute.

Martinez earned a Ph.D. in Hispanic linguistics from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and later completed an M.P.H. in social and behavioral health from Texas A&M Health Science Center’s School of Rural Public Health. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from the University of Texas–Pan American and a master’s degree in Spanish linguistics from the University of Houston.

“Serving as dean of the College of Liberal and Fine Arts is an unparalleled opportunity, and I am humbled by the chance to impact lives of so many students and their families,” Martinez said. “I am excited by President Eighmy’s and Provost Espy’s vision of UTSA becoming a model of an R1 university that stays true to its roots as a Hispanic serving institution. I’ve also been heartened by the COLFA visioning exercise, and I am ready to lock arms with faculty colleagues, students, staff and stakeholders to move COLFA forward to what I know is a bright future for the college. The opportunities are endless and the impact in the community is palpable.”

The College of Liberal and Fine Arts at UTSA is home to nine academic departments encompassing the fine arts, humanities and social sciences. With more than 4,400 students, it is UTSA’s oldest college. COLFA shapes the education of virtually every UTSA student through its highly ranked core curriculum. The college offers 33 degree programs, including doctorates in anthropology and English; a nationally recognized M.F.A. and one of the nation’s largest undergraduate programs in medical humanities. Its faculty includes exemplary, award-winning teachers and internationally recognized researchers and artists. COLFA is also a major provider of arts and humanities programming in Texas, reaching an audience of more than 70,000 guests annually.

Story was originally posted to UTSA Today on May 4, 2021