FVSU president Ivelaw Griffith shakes hands at 73rd annual Spring Commencement in May
Fort Valley State Pres. Ivelaw L. Griffith sets the stage for local, national and global student body
After serving his first year as the president of Fort Valley State University, Dr. Ivelaw Lloyd Griffith is on a mission to reposition Georgia’s only 1890 Land-Grant Institution for the future.
Inaugurated as the ninth president in April 2014, the Guyana-born and educated father accepted the leadership charge of Georgia’s No. 1 public HBCU last summer along with wife and first lady, Francille Griffith. Building on the successes garnered during his previous post as Provost for York College—where he increased the number of full-time faculty by 30 percent, reorganized the academic division, and raised the research and scholarly climate by creating a Provost Lecture Series, among other initiatives—the political scientist and former professor is braced to create an institution of rigorous academic offerings. In his words, “we advocate the three A’s—Academics, Athletics, but one more A—and it’s a big one—Affordability. In a time where students too often are saddled with high debt, we offer affordability. Some of our students graduated with little or no debt.”
With a Ph.D in political science, and educational acumen that includes a bachelor of social sciences degree from the University of Guyana, a masters of arts degree in political science and public administration from Long Island University, NY, and master of philosophy from the City University of NY, Griffith qualifies to be a thought leader. But he is also involved in business and community, and enjoys engaging with students. Wanting young leaders of tomorrow to be reminded daily about life, perseverance and other important philosophies, Griffith organizes periodic ‘Walls of Wisdom’ celebration events. “Each of these walls is a teachable space,” Griffith said. “People like Jesse Owens, Wilma Rudolph, or Oscar De La Hoya are giants, and a good reminder to our students about Dreaming and Doing!”