College of Southern Maryland (CSM) President Dr. Yolanda Wilson begins her tenure as CSM’s sixth president today and in doing so, becomes the first African-American president to lead the college in its 64-year-history.
“I am incredibly honored to join the College of Southern Maryland community and welcome in the 2023 new year together,” she wrote in her first correspondence with CSM faculty, staff, and students. “As your new president, I am reminded of the significance of new beginnings, and the importance of honoring the rich legacy at CSM while looking anew, with all of you, at what the future promises for our region.
”I am immensely grateful to be able to return home with my family and give back to the community that has so richly given to me,” she continued. “As a native of Prince George’s County and a graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park, I have a deep love in my heart for the Southern Maryland region, and so, it is with an overwhelming sense of pride and joy that I say: It is good to be home.”
Wilson comes to CSM from Wilkes Community College (WCC) in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, where she was vice president of instruction, Ashe Campus and Alleghany Center, and is a leadership coach for Achieving the Dream. A veteran professor and administrator of the North Carolina and South Carolina community college systems for more than 22 years, Wilson began her career as an adjunct faculty member and then moved into more progressive leadership roles in both academic affairs, student services, and campus operations. Her work in higher education has centered on creating a student-ready college culture, mitigating institutional barriers to access, retention, and completion, and strategically focusing on programming and policies that support all students to success.
Wilson has completed the 2019-2020 Aspen Rising President’s Fellowship program, received the Phi Theta Kappa Distinguished College Administrator’s Awards – both internationally and within the Carolinas, and was recognized as the South Carolina Technical Education Association Administrator of the Year at York Technical College. While at WCC, she served on the Wilkes Community Foundation Board, and three North Carolina Community College System committees: the Curriculum Committee, the Transfer Advisory Committee, and the Developmental Education Advisory Council. She currently serves on the Aspen Institute Alumni Advisory Council; is board secretary and Region 2 director for the American Association for Women in Community Colleges; and chairs reaffirmation visits for the Southern Association for Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Wilson earned her bachelor’s degree in English Education and her master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Maryland, College Park. She completed her Ed.D. in Adult and Community College Education from North Carolina State University. She proudly shared that she is blessed to be married to her best friend, Dale, and together they have three sons: Bryan, Brandon, and Braxton.