Meet President Paul | Capital University, Columbus Ohio
Close

Majors

  • Beth Paul in front of gate

    Meet President Paul

    On July 1, 2016, Dr. Elizabeth “Beth” L. Paul became the 16th president of Capital University, having served the previous seven years as the senior academic officer at Stetson University in Central Florida.

    As a national leader in higher education, Dr. Paul’s many accomplishments include redesigning financial and data infrastructure to support data-driven decision-making; introducing multiyear budgeting and planning models, and strategic enrollment management; growing diversity and inclusiveness; strengthening academic programs, community-engaged learning and university marketing strategy; and championing organizational culture change to connect and unite everyone to one university mission.

    Well-known as a consultant focusing on student-learning outcomes assessment, community empowerment, strategic planning and change management, Dr. Paul has held national leadership roles in key higher education initiatives, including community-engaged learning and undergraduate research. She was president of the Council on Undergraduate Research, and currently serves on the board of directors of the National Association of College and University Business Officers, and as a task force chair of the Council of Independent Colleges.

    Beth with Students
    Capital's 16th President

    On July 1, 2016, Dr. Elizabeth "Beth" L. Paul became the 16th president of Capital University. She was the unanimous choice of the Board and the search committee after President Denvy A. Bowman, Ph.D., announced he would retire from the presidency at the end of his 10th year.

    Dr. Paul considers it a moral imperative of higher education to actively partner in innovation, ideas and learning approaches that extend beyond established boundaries to build capacity and tackle social challenges. An architect of community empowerment through university partnerships, she embraces the importance of place in building dynamic environments that enhance student learning. She believes colleges and universities are most relevant when they reflect the communities they touch. She champions university-neighborhood partnerships that leverage the exchange of knowledge, discovery and problem-solving to advance student learning, social mobility and empowerment of all.

    She is an engineer of neighborhood-based community-engaged and experiential learning programs, local and global, garnering recognition from the Bonner Foundation, President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll and The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Learning for the “Community Engagement.” Her research, publications and presentations include topics such as high-impact, community-engaged and experiential learning; undergraduate research; university-community partnerships that lift up all people; the role of faculty in undergraduate research; institutional financial models; interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary learning opportunities for students and faculty; and relationship development and dynamics.

    When she arrived on campus, President Paul immediately recognized the importance of Capital’s place in Columbus. Capital is a private university partner in innovation, ideas and learning approaches that extend beyond established boundaries to build capacity, tackle social challenges, and improve lives through higher education. Our Bexley and downtown Columbus campuses join two thriving communities, and more than 19,000 proud Capital alumni live and work in the Columbus Region, forming a strong network of critical thinkers, problem-solvers, and inclusive, principled leaders. “Bexley and Columbus are integral to Capital’s learning community, expanding students’ experience, skills, impact and horizons,” says Dr. Paul, “Wherever Cap graduates go, they create and enrich community by applying the ways in which they have learned how to learn and live at Capital.” Our students, graduates and employees help propel Ohio’s capital city to its status as a top-ranked destination for professionals, creatives, businesses and more.

    Under Dr. Paul’s leadership, Capital has developed a new strategic framework to guide it toward the future, reunited with neighboring Trinity Lutheran Seminary, launched the first Bonner Leader Program in Central Ohio, and introduced its nationally recognized Good Guarantee for undergraduates whose families have chosen mission-centered careers through nonprofit and public-service work.

    Recent Publications from President Paul   

     "The Value of Good" - University Business
    "Bringing the True Value of Higher Education to the Forefront" - Inside Higher Ed
     "How Can I be a Good Student?

    Dr. Paul's family

    Dr. Paul’s family includes her husband, Dr. William Ball, a political science professor, and daughters Martha and Sophie.

    In this rapidly changing and increasingly challenging higher education environment, Capital is preparing to welcome the largest incoming class in the university’s history in fall 2019.

    Dr. Paul holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology, with a minor in statistics, and a doctorate in personality psychology, both from Boston University. She did a predoctoral training fellowship at the National Institute of Mental Health, and earned a certificate in higher education administration from Harvard Institute for Educational Management. 

    Dr. Paul’s family includes her husband, Dr. William Ball, a political science professor, and daughters Martha and Sophie.

     

    Read President Paul's Extensive Background

    Biography (PDF)
    Full CV (PDF)