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Decker named Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs at UA Little Rock

William "Cody" Decker
William "Cody" Decker

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock has named Dr. William “Cody” Decker the permanent vice chancellor of student affairs, effective April 1.

Decker, 36, of Little Rock, has been serving in an interim capacity since August 2019. In this role, Decker oversees all units that work within student affairs, including recruitment, admissions, financial aid, and the overall student experience at UA Little Rock.

“I’m honored to serve UA Little Rock in this new capacity,” Decker said. “The role presents a unique opportunity to utilize my skill set for data-informed decision making in partnership with leaders across the university to strengthen enrollment, improve student experiences, and drive continuous improvement in the division of student affairs.”

In addition, Decker will continue leading the Office of Institutional Research and Analytics as chief data officer. That office facilitates the collection, analysis, and interpretation of institutional data to support planning, decision making, and regulatory reporting at UA Little Rock. He also serves as an adjunct professor in the Department of Information Science.

Chancellor Christina Drale said Decker has made tremendous progress in improving the efficiency and effectiveness of student services and recruitment since becoming the interim vice chancellor.

“In just six months, he and his team have increased the number of admitted new freshmen for fall 2021 by over 50 percent and increased the number of overall new admits by 30 percent over last year,” Drale said.

With the help of the university’s recruitment and retention committees, Decker produced the university’s first Strategic Enrollment Management Plan that will help guide the university toward success in its enrollment goals. He also serves on several strategic committees, including the Higher Learning Commission Accreditation Steering Team, the Institutional Effectiveness Committee, University Enrollment Committee, and the Quality Initiative Task Force.

“Dr. Decker continues to work diligently in building collaborative relationships across the campus and in rebuilding our capacity in student services,” Drale said. “Most recently, he is leading our campus Coronavirus Emergency Management Team and taking a front line role in helping us manage our response to this challenge. I am grateful for his excellent leadership and hard work.”

In 2015, Decker came to UA Little Rock as director of institutional research and analytics. He was named UA Little Rock’s first chief data officer in 2018 as well as promoted to associate provost.

Prior to UA Little Rock, Decker worked as the assistant commissioner of education and chief information officer at the Arkansas Department of Education, network project manager in research and technology at Dawson Education Cooperative, and technical support manager at Environmental and Spatial Technology, Inc.

Decker is a three-time graduate of UA Little Rock. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in information science, a Master of Science degree in information quality, and a Ph.D. in integrated computing.