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Autumn Tooms Cyprès

Autumn Tooms Cypres Headshot

Founding Dean of the WVU College of Applied Human Sciences

Autumn Tooms Cyprès became the founding dean for the WVU College of Applied Human Sciences in May 2022. Cyprès brings experience as a former public school teacher and principal as well as extensive higher education leadership to her post at WVU. She focuses on servant leadership and the overlap of education, health, wellness and prosperity as a scholar and practitioner.

Cyprès comes to WVU after spending four years at The University of Alabama at Birmingham first as the dean for the School of Education and most recently as the school’s associate provost. As dean for the School of Education, the largest of its kind in Alabama, she designed and implemented its first strategic plan that focused on intentional inclusivity and cross-disciplinary collaborations. She also led the creation and implementation of infrastructure and policies within the School that resulted in successful accreditations, enhanced brand recognition and partnerships, an elevated profile and increased student enrollment.

As associate provost, she focused on the school’s strategic planning relative to the institution’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and creating transdisciplinary programs for degree and non-degree seeking students. 

Prior to her time at UAB, she held leadership roles in higher education including founding director of the Leadership Academy at The University of Tennessee, founding associate dean for research and graduate studies at St. John’s University, department chair at Virginia Commonwealth University and program coordinator at Kent State University. 

After 13 years in the public school system as a high school biology and chemistry teacher and later as an elementary school principal, Cyprès shifted her focus to higher education with a focus on creating a connection between universities and community partners. She has led team collaboratives in the design, implementation and management of more than 70 graduate programs with a majority of those focused on serving communities in the Appalachian region.

Cyprès earned her bachelor’s degree in secondary education from Arizona State University, her master’s degree in educational leadership from Northern Arizona University and her doctoral degree in educational leadership and policy studies from Arizona State.