MTSU names Cunningham, Torsney vice provosts as pa...

MTSU names Cunningham, Torsney vice provosts as part of restructuring

The MTSU Provost’s Office is assigning separate administrators to oversee academics and professors in order to facilitate greater student success.

As part of the restructuring process, which does not increase staff size, Cheryl Torsney was hired as vice provost for faculty programs and Peter Cunningham was designated vice provost for academic affairs effective July 1.

“Both Cheryl and Peter have substantial administrative experience, in addition to fine records as faculty members,” said Mark Byrnes, interim university provost and political science professor.

Dr. Cheryl Torsney, vice provost for faculty affairs

Dr. Cheryl Torsney

Dr. Peter Cunningham, vice provost for academic affairs

Dr. Peter Cunningham

Torsney, a new hire, comes to MTSU from the University of Texas at El Paso, where she was senior vice provost from 2012 to 2015. She assisted in hiring and evaluating faculty, provided professional development for faculty and mediated faculty complaints.

In her new position, Torsney is responsible for recruitment and retention of faculty, promotion and tenure, faculty development and retirement planning.

“I’m really excited to be joining MTSU,” said Torsney. “We’re an institution on the rise, committed to student success and innovation. I’m eager to serve the faculty and the institution by providing opportunities for us to be successful together.”

Torsney earned her double bachelor’s degrees in English and French from Allegheny College in Meadville, Pennsylvania, in 1977; her master’s degree in English from Louisiana State University in 1979; and her doctorate in English from the University of Florida in 1982.

Cunningham has performed numerous administrative and faculty functions since coming to MTSU in 1991. These include special assistant to the provost for curricular initiatives, associate dean of the College of Graduate Studies and professor of recreation and leisure services in the Department of Health and Human Performance.

“I have been very fortunate to have had the chance to serve this institution in a variety of roles over the years, and I look forward to this opportunity to continue to serve the university and my faculty colleagues as they work to advance our academic mission,” said Cunningham.

As vice provost for academic affairs, Cunningham will be responsible for oversight of all academic programs and the establishment of new degree programs and serve as the liaison between MTSU and the Tennessee Higher Education Commission on matters related to academic programs and policies.

Cunningham earned his bachelor’s degree in health, physical education and recreation from Austin Peay State University in 1976; his master’s degree in recreation and physical education from Murray State University in 1977; and his doctorate in recreation and park administration from Indiana University in 1985.

For more information, contact the Provost’s Office at 615-898-2953.

— Gina Logue (