Michael Bassis has particular interest and expertise in leadership and organizational effectiveness, strategic planning, and innovative strategies to control educational costs while enhancing educational quality.
Bassis began his career as a faculty member at the University of Rhode Island. There, his interest in issues of teaching and learning led him to co-author two best-selling textbooks, serve as editor of the journal, Teaching Sociology, and chair the Undergraduate Education Section of the American Sociological Association.
Subsequently, Bassis served as executive vice president and university provost at Antioch University, president of Olivet College in Michigan, and CEO of New College of Florida. He is president emeritus at Westminster College in Utah where he served as president from 2002-2012.
During his tenure at Westminster, the college received national recognition for its quality and distinctiveness as it added 28 new undergraduate and graduate programs, established six new centers and institutes, built seven new facilities and achieved record enrollment, among underrepresented and out-of state students in particular.
Earlier, Bassis led the successful effort to move New College of Florida to its current status as an independent institution within the State University System. As president of Olivet College, his efforts to revitalize that institution won him wide recognition. His work at Olivet was the focus of a case study developed by the Center for the Study of Higher and Post-Secondary Education at the University of Michigan and was chronicled by Stephen R. Covey in his book, Living the Seven Habits.
Bassis earned a B.A. from Brown University and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Chicago.