Dr. Dwaun J. Warmack
Harris-Stowe State University
Born: Detroit, MI
Finney High School
College & Degree(s):
Union University, Ed.D. in Educational Leadership with Specialization in Higher Education, Delta State University, M.Ed. in Sociology, BS, Education
Peer Reviewer with the Higher Learning Commission,
Board Member for the following: Cortex, the Saint Louis Science Center, the St. Louis Regional Chamber, The Muny, Grand Center and the United Way of Greater St. Louis.
You took office at Harris-Stowe in July 2014, just before Michael Brown Jr. was killed and the Ferguson protests started. How have those experiences influenced and shaped your presidency?
Never before had I been as clear as to my life’s calling – not only as a university president, but as a leader whose mission it is to help to transform the lives of individuals who may not have access to the resources necessary for success. In the wake of the Ferguson Tragedy, 50 Harris-Stowe State University African-American male scholars volunteered to join me in welcoming back the students of Griffith Elementary School, Ferguson, MO. It was the first day of school for the children who were witnessing and being affected by the tragic events that were taking place in Ferguson during that summer. The HSSU scholars and I personally greeted, encouraged and escorted the children into the building for their first day back to school. Not only were the children extremely happy and grateful that we were there, but the principal, teachers, staff and parents were as well.
What are some of the top “action” items on your desk?
Creating an Academic Excellence Agenda; Increasing Enrollment; Increasing Friend-raising and Fundraising; and Increasing Graduation Rates
Harris-Stowe has enjoyed significant growth in the past two years? What strides at Harris-Stowe make you particularly proud?
There are several, but to name just a few:
• Increased new student enrollment by 25% in one year.
• New funding partnerships with contributions of over $3 million to date.
• Increased grants totaling approximately $3.5 million.
• For the first-time in university history, Harris-Stowe is now approved to offer graduate degree programs with the Missouri Legislature’s passage of Senate Bill 334.
• The university was ranked No. 40 in the nation in degrees conferred to African-Americans in Education and No. 47 in degrees conferred to African-Americans in Mathematics and Statistics. (Diverse: Issues in Higher Education magazine)Harris-Stowe is the only Missouri institution listed in both rankings.
• Increased academic degree programs by 108%. Going from 14 majors to 31 majors and minors in one year.
• University now offers five new baccalaureate degree programs in Finance, Urban Ecology and Sustainability, Marketing, Sociology and Political Science; and 11 new minors.
• For the first time in university history, Harris-Stowe now offers fully online degree programs in Criminal Justice and Health Care Management.
• The first-ever certification program is available in Urban Agriculture.
• The Office of Admissions increased applications by over 100% for the past two years.
Do you have a favorite St. Louis landmark or place to visit?
The site of the Dred Scott Decision - The Old Courthouse. In fact, I am moved by the prominent Dred and Harriett Scott statue each time I am in that area. In addition, I am often invited to different programs and events at local schools and churches, which I always enjoy. Finally, because I have such a full and challenging schedule, I enjoy being able to take my wife and daughter on visits to the St. Louis Zoo, to lunch or dinner at Sweetie Pie’s Upper Crust, and one of my personal favorites for a bite on the run – Tasty Treats on Delmar!