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Meet the Provost

Provost Robin Rylaarsdam

Robin Rylaarsdam became Bethel’s provost on March 1, 2021. With more than 20 years of experience in higher education, Robin has a proven track record of academic development, student success, and meaningful faith-learning integration. 

Robin Rylaarsdam

After earning a bachelor’s degree in biology from Northwestern College in Iowa, Robin went on to earn a Ph.D. in molecular biology and genetics at Northwestern University. She served as a professor and administrator at several Christian colleges before accepting a position as dean of the College of Arts & Sciences at Saint Xavier University in Chicago, Illinois, where she advocated for program development and expansion in graduate programs, improved undergraduate retention, and advanced diversity and inclusion efforts among both students and faculty. 

Robin was drawn to Bethel because of her own transformative experience as a student at a Christian liberal arts school and her passion for Christ-centered education as a whole. Having grown up in the Reformed tradition, Robin has long believed in the importance of lifelong learning and service to God in every discipline and endeavor.

In her free time, Robin enjoys playing piano, cheering on the Chicago Cubs, and spending time outdoors with her family and Siberian husky.