Dr. Amy Arnett

Vice President for Distance Education, Professor of Ecology
Dr. Amy Arnett

Executive Biography

Dr. Amy Arnett is the Vice President for Distance Education and Professor of Ecology at Unity College. Dr. Arnett has been a professor at Unity College since 1999. She received a BS in Biology from the University of Michigan and a Ph.D. in Biology from the University of Vermont. She conducted Postdoctoral Research at the University of Nebraska on the impact of invasive species on native communities.

Dr. Arnett studies insect ecology and has published widely in ecology and entomology journals. She was a 2009 Fulbright Scholar and studied with colleagues in Slovenia. Recently she was the recipient, along with colleagues, of a large National Science Foundation grant to study the impact of invasive pests in hemlock forests. Dr. Arnett brings a depth of ecological knowledge to the MS program along with years of teaching experience connecting with students and helping them work toward their career goals.

Position Summary

An executive position providing leadership and management, the Chief Distance Education Officer (CDEO) oversees leadership, planning, coordination, and evaluation of all instructional and operational components of Distance Education at Unity College. The CDEO works with senior leadership to establish the strategic direction of the college with regard to Distance Education. The CDEO works with the President and senior leadership to continue to transform Unity College from a college with a strong regional presence to a leading national institutional of higher education. Within the framework of functional leadership, the CDEO supports and is supported by other senior level leaders and works with all constituencies to realize the Unity College Mission and Strategic Plan.  The CDEO reports to the President.


Essential Functions

  1. Coordinates the establishment of goals, objectives, and priorities for distance education technology, educational technology, learning resources and areas deemed appropriate for distance education.
  2. Develops and implements operational policies, procedures, and standards for quality assurance in distance education technology, educational technology, learning resources and areas deemed appropriate for distance education.
  3. Facilitates the creation, organization, and implementation of professional staff development programs/activities related to distance education.
  4. Maintains knowledge of current trends and developments in the field by attending professional development training, workshops, seminars and conferences and by reading professional literature in the related technical field.
  5. Collaborates with Communications and Marketing to develop, implement, monitor and evaluate a marketing plan to include all distance education initiatives.
  6. Collaborates with and utilizes resources of senior staff team to promote courses and programs at college and job fairs, tradeshows, participation in community groups as well as speaking to groups and organizations.
  7. Ensures standardized practices of processing prospective student inquiries through enrollment are implemented. Monitors and reports conversion progress/metrics and initiates and implements corrective action as needed.
  8. Meets enrollment, revenue, quality, and margin goals.
  9. Develops annual course schedules which respond to the needs of currently enrolled learners and assures proper sequencing of classes while maintaining (or moving toward) targeted course and program enrollments.
  10. Ensures adequate faculty and adjuncts to meet program needs.
  11. Ensures Unity College policies are being enforced by having a thorough knowledge of staff functions, administrative functions and policy manuals.
  12. Monitors and reviews all course syllabi for compliance with appropriate established templates.
  13. Ensures the Distance Education Department maintains a culture of superior customer service through example, encouragement and direction to staff and faculty to ensure superior customer service as a competitive advantage.
  14. Establishes and monitors a system of oversight of customer service, initiating corrective action as appropriate.
  15. Resolves student issues satisfactorily.
  16. Develops, publishes, and provides appropriate communication and reports to campus offices routinely and upon special request.
  17. Provides liaison between the college and the administration of partner institutions (e.g., community colleges, military education centers, high schools, corporations), as assigned.
  18. Collaborates with campus offices to train all Distance Education staff in all aspects of retention and persistence of enrolled students. Assists all Directors in the training of their staffs as required.
  19. Other duties as assigned.

Functional Responsibility

First among equals for leadership, planning, coordination, and evaluation of all aspects of Distance Education at Unity College.

Sustainable Business

The new B.S. in Sustainable Business Enterprise and Sustainable Master’s of Business Administration expose students to the business world through the school’s distinct sustainability science framework.