University Leadership

Dr. Parwinder Grewal

Dr. Parwinder Grewal will serve as the inaugural president of Vermont State University, effective July 1, 2022. Dr. Grewal brings over twenty-five years of experience in higher education and ten years of biotechnology research and development experience in six states and five countries. Most recently, he served at University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley, where he played key leadership roles including founding dean of the college of sciences, dean of the graduate college, special assistant to the president, and executive vice president for research, graduate studies, and new program development.

He previously served as the entomology and plant pathology department head at University of Tennessee – Knoxville where he also served as the founding director of the Center for Urban Environment and Economic Development and of the Urban Landscape Ecology program. Dr. Grewal received a Fulbright Scholar Award from the U.S. Department of State and Stockholm University in Sweden in 2013.

Dr. Grewal will serve as president of Castleton University, Northern Vermont University, and Vermont Technical College until the unification is complete in July 2023.


  • Ph.D. Zoology, Imperial College London
  • M.S. Plant Pathology, Punjab Agricultural University
  • B.S. Agriculture, Punjab Agricultural University

Nolan Atkins

Dr. Nolan Atkins is the chief academic officer of Vermont State University. Dr. Atkins previously served as provost of Northern Vermont University and as interim president of Lyndon State College. As a faculty member at Lyndon, Dr. Atkins chaired the nationally recognized Atmospheric Sciences Department. He began teaching at Northern Vermont University – Lyndon in 1997 and was interim dean of academic affairs for eighteen months until serving as president. As an administrator, he has a strong commitment to students, faculty, and staff and is known for his integrity, forward-looking vision, and data-driven decision-making.

Dr. Atkins will continue to hold the role of provost at Northern Vermont University until unification is complete in July 2023.


  • Ph.D. Meteorology, University of California, Los Angeles
  • M.S. Meteorology, University of California, Los Angeles
  • B.S. Physics, University of Minnesota

Dr. Jae Basiliere
Chief Diversity Officer

Jae Basiliere is chief diversity officer at Vermont State University, working to ensure our communities are accessible and welcoming to all students. Basiliere previously served as director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at Northern Vermont University. Jae has facilitated the Vermont State Colleges System’s Social Justice Group and has dedicated significant time and energy to institutional equity and social justice work. Their research focuses on performance activism, LGBTQ history, and rural queer studies.


Ph.D. Gender Studies, Indiana University Bloomington
M.A. American Studies, State University of New York at Buffalo
B.A. Women’s Studies, Wells College

Kelley Beckwith
Vice President of Student Success

Kelley Beckwith is vice president of student success at Vermont State University and leads the coordination and integration of a range of student services to continually improve student outcomes and the overall student experience. She has oversight of advising, career development, student and residence life, athletics, academic support, wellness, and other areas. Beckwith previously served as associate dean of student success at Castleton University, and before that led the work of Castleton’s Academic Support Center and TRIO grants for over seventeen years. She was also a part-time faculty member in the Business Administration department for ten years. Throughout her career, she has assisted students to realize the value of a college degree, helped them to achieve their goals, and focused on providing equitable and accessible services to meet student needs.


M.S.A. Administration and Management, St. Michael’s College
B.S. Business Administration/Marketing, University of Vermont

Maurice Ouimet
Vice President for Admissions and Enrollment Services

Maurice Ouimet serves as dean of enrollment at Vermont State University, leading the admissions efforts for each campus. He entered the field of college admissions shortly after earning his undergraduate degree and has served in Castleton University’s admissions office since 2002, first as an admissions counselor before being promoted to director of admissions in 2003. He has served as dean of enrollment at Castleton University since 2007.

Ouimet will continue to hold the role of dean of enrollment at Castleton University until the unification is complete in July 2023.


  • M.Ed. College of St. Joseph
  • B.A. Sociology, Boston College

Sylvia Plumb 
Associate Vice President of University Marketing and Communications 

Sylvia Plumb is director of university marketing and communications at Vermont State University. She leads all marketing and communications for the university, including branding, print and digital media, and public relations. Plumb has served as director of marketing and communications at Northern Vermont University for four years and as executive director of communications at Lyndon State College for three years.  


B.A. Sociology, Connecticut College 

Exciting Things Are Ahead

Vermont State University is new, but our team is comprised of expert faculty, dedicated staff, and committed administrators from Castleton University, Northern Vermont University, and Vermont Technical College. As our three institutions come together, our team will too. Check back and see what’s new!