HFC Welcomes New Vice President of Academic Affairs

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Release Date: 8/10/2016

HFC Welcomes New Vice President of Academic Affairs

Henry Ford College Welcomes Dr. Michael A. Nealon as Vice President of Academic Affairs

HFC has appointed Dr. Michael A. Nealon as the College’s new vice president of Academic Affairs. He officially began on Monday, Aug. 15.

“I consider myself a lifelong learner. I felt it was time to join a new learning community. HFC embraces and embodies what students and the surrounding community really need a community college to be. Higher education moves at the speed of change itself. We need to be flexible and adaptable when providing services to our students. I can see that HFC is definitely powering forward,” said Nealon, of Okemos.

A New York City native, Nealon graduated summa cum laude from St. Michael’s College in Colchester, Vt., earning an undergraduate degree in Humanities and Music History in 1983. He was valedictorian of his graduating class at St. Michael’s. In 1985, he earned a graduate degree in Musicology at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, Tenn. In 1997, he earned a doctoral degree in Musicology at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill.

Nealon has been in higher education for nearly 30 years, serving in both teaching and administrative capacities. His last position prior to coming to HFC was vice president of Instruction at Washtenaw Community College (WCC) in Ann Arbor.

“Music has always been a part of my life. You learn a lot about leadership in particular when performing music because you are an active member of a team working together toward something that’s greater than yourself. This is true for musicians and athletes. I’ve indoctrinated that approach in my leadership style – it’s very team-oriented,” said Nealon.

Previously, Nealon worked for 18 years at Lansing Community College (LCC) in Lansing. He was lead faculty of LCC’s Music Program; chair of LCC’s Humanities & Performing Arts Dept.; dean of LCC’s Arts & Sciences Division; and associate vice president of Engaged Student Learning.

“I taught music and humanities at LCC. We have a strong music program there, particularly because we focused on music and music technologies. I served LCC and the learning community in the Lansing area in a variety of different ways for almost two decades,” said Nealon.

In addition to teaching music at LCC, he has also taught music at Northwestern, DePaul University in Chicago and North Park University (NPU) in Chicago. His musical career began at age 8, singing soprano for an all-boys’ choir in NYC. Not long after, he began singing for the world-renowned New York Metropolitan Opera (The Met). In fact, Nealon toured throughout Europe when he was 12 and even sang for Elizabeth II, the Queen of England.

“I am very pleased to announce that Dr. Nealon is joining our fine educational institution. We are honored to have someone of his academic pedigree here at the College and look forward to great things from him in the years to come. I hope everyone will join me in extending a warm welcome to him,” said HFC President Dr. Stan Jensen.