Dr. Sheri Everts

Chancellor, Appalachian State University

Dr. Sheri Everts joined Appalachian State University as its eighth leader in July 2014. Previously, she had been provost and vice president for academic affairs at Illinois State University since 2008.

A Nebraska native who attended elementary school in a one-room schoolhouse, Everts graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1980 with a bachelor’s degree in English instruction and secondary education. After teaching middle school and high school English in Kansas and Nebraska, she returned to UNL, where she earned a master’s degree in literacy education and English (1991) and a doctorate in administration, curriculum and instruction (1994).

Everts began her higher education career in 1994 as an assistant professor in the Department of Teacher Education at the University of Nebraska Omaha. Rising through the academic and administrative ranks at UNO, she was named assistant vice chancellor for academic and student affairs in 2000, promoted to associate vice president in 2003, and named interim senior vice chancellor for academic and student affairs in 2006. She served in that interim capacity until June 30, 2008, when she left Nebraska to become provost and vice president for academic affairs at Illinois State University and also served as interim president at ISU.

Under Everts’ leadership, Appalachian has distinguished itself as the premier public undergraduate institution in the state of North Carolina. By ensuring a sound foundation in terms of the university’s physical infrastructure and the goals and strategic initiatives that empower human potential, Appalachian provides the highest quality setting in which students can grow and learn how to navigate life successfully. Specifically, between 2014 and 2019, enrollment grew to more than 19,000 and, of the undergraduate population, the university increased underrepresented students by 48%, first-generation students by 79% and rural students by 10% (in-state, degree-seeking students who are from Tier 1 and Tier 2 counties, as designated by the North Carolina Department of Commerce). In 2017, Everts launched the Chancellor’s Innovation Scholars Program to support research and practice related to the innovation of higher education. In 2018, she led the charge in opening the Appalachian State University Academy at Middle Fork in Walkertown, North Carolina — which serves approximately 300 K–5 students with research-based practices, state-of-the-art literacy instruction, and exemplary classroom instruction and administration — and cut the ribbon on the new Leon Levine Hall of Health Sciences. Appalachian continues to be a leader in sustainability, in part by hosting the annual Appalachian Energy Summit — a platform through which UNC System campuses have worked together to avoid more than $924 million in utility costs.

Chancellor Everts’ priorities for moving forward as a campus community include:

  • articulating the ways Appalachian defines sustainability;
  • increasing the diversity of our student, faculty and staff populations;
  • improving wellness, health and safety for our campus community;
  • integrating global learning into and beyond our classrooms;
  • supporting faculty and staff;
  • providing innovative and creative opportunities for our students to engage in and showcase their research;
  • emphasizing the significance of the difference we can make in communities here and across the world through civic engagement;
  • securing the necessary resources to energize and sustain these strategic initiatives and support our world-class faculty, staff and students; and
  • maintaining a focus on slow and steady enrollment growth.