Dear William & Mary Community,

William & Mary’s Dean of the Faculty of Arts & Sciences Maria Donoghue Velleca has advised me that she intends to step down from the role after the 2022-23 academic year.

Dean Donoghue Velleca joined W&M in 2020 in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, at a time when the university was experiencing a great deal of uncertainty and change. Her leadership; her commitment to addressing faculty, staff, and student needs holistically; and her willingness to approach issues creatively helped William & Mary substantially during a very challenging period. Simultaneously, she played a crucial role in advancing an innovative vision for what Arts & Sciences can be at William & Mary.

In her first year as dean of A&S, Maria led the reorganization of the dean’s office, which focuses more explicitly on mission-critical work. She also initiated A&S philanthropic planning with the creation of the Council of Arts & Sciences and directed sustainable curriculum work. In addition to working with the Faculty Affairs Committee and Council of Chairs and Program Directors, she created new advisory groups involving non-tenure eligible faculty, staff, undergraduate, and graduate students. As her term continued, many of Maria’s plans for A&S came to fruition, including several achievements supporting the goals of Vision 2026, the university’s strategic plan. Maria hired the inaugural A&S dean of diversity, equity, and inclusion, and created the Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs; strengthening the university as a whole. In addition, Maria’s efforts behind the scenes are also important as she chairs the search for a vice provost for academic affairs and anticipates the opening of the Arts Quarter next year.

I respect the judicious and collaborative thinking that Maria brings to her role as dean, and I look forward to our continued partnership this academic year as we ensure A&S advances important initiatives successfully. I am sure that Maria’s continuing focus on supporting faculty, staff, and students will benefit the university.

W&M will conduct a national search for the next dean of Arts & Sciences; my office will share more about the process in the future.

Please join me in expressing gratitude to Maria during the course of her final academic year as dean and wishing her well as she leaves Williamsburg.




Peggy Agouris


William & Mary

The Brafferton

P.O. Box 8795

Williamsburg, Virginia 23187-8795

(757) 221-1993 (office)

(757) 221-1510 (fax)