Class Deans

Colby succeeds when our students thrive. Stellar advising is an important foundation.

Class deans will work closely with you to navigate and chart your academic experience at Colby. They work closely together to help you sort out any issue that arises and collaborate with your academic advisor, parents, and staff from across the College to ensure you reach your potential.

Please make an appointment by calling 207-859-4560 or drop in during walk-in hours to discuss any questions or concerns, brainstorm options, or think strategically about your academic and future planning. Class deans also serve as part of the night and weekend emergency on-call rotation. To reach the on-call dean, call campus security: 207-859-5530.

Meet the Class Deans

Joseph Atkins, Class Dean for Junior and Senior Students and Programs

After working nearly 10 years for IBM, Joseph Atkins, Ph.D. decided to go back to school. He received his bachelor of arts degree from Vassar College, where he held a dual major in computer science and cognitive science.

He then went on to get his Ph.D. in brain and cognitive sciences from the University of Rochester. His areas of expertise are: visual learning, perceptual learning, cognitive science, sensory integration, and visual deficits due to brain damage. Artificial intelligence is also one of his areas of interest.

Dean Atkins has been with Colby since 2002 and can be reached via email at or by visiting the Dean of Studies Office in Eustis.

Steve Moran, Class Dean for First-Year Students and Programs

Dean Steve Moran

Steve Moran is a native of New Gloucester, Maine, graduated with a B.A. in political science from the University of Maine and subsequently completed his M.Ed. in higher education administration at the University of Maine.

He comes to Colby from Guilford College in Greensboro, N.C. There he was the director of student leadership and engagement, overseeing new-student orientation, all student organizations, and student governance.

Moran actively taught a number of first-year transition and leadership courses at his previous institution. He also served as a member of the on-call rotation and as a Title IX investigator.

Dean Moran can be reached via email at or by visiting the Dean of Studies Office in Eustis.

Laura Jones-Pettit, Class Dean for Sophomore Students and Programs

Dean Jones-Pettit’s key priority at Colby is to provide academic, personal, and administrative advice and counsel to second-year students, and to collaborate with any people or offices necessary to help students work through challenges that might otherwise get in the way of their studies or their general well-being.

She comes most recently from the Pennsylvania State University, where she served as interim associate director of the Program of Writing and Rhetoric, helping folks both inside and outside the classroom to productively communicate and problem solve with an eye toward meeting the needs and supporting the values of everyone involved.

Dean Jones-Pettit has a B.A. in English literature and visual arts from Elmira College and an M.F.A. in fiction with a focus on sequential art narrative and short stories from the Solstice MFA in Creative Writing Program at Pine Manor College.

Dean Jones-Pettit can be reached at or by visiting the Dean of Studies Office in Eustis.