Ruminations of a Taco-Obsessed Philly Native

Liberal arts education is the main focus for advocate Jonathan Veitch. As the 15th Occidental Collage President, Veitch has served in this role since 2009. He was formerly the New York City Dean of The New School’s Eugene Lang College. While at Occidental, Veitch has established a special, strategic planning process which charts Occidental College’s future. This has brought strength to the College’s civic involvement, including the arts and programs for global literacy. Partnerships have been established with cultural institutions in Southern California.

Veitch’s leadership brought about the completion of construction of the Samuelson Alumni Center as well as the expansion and renovation of the 98 year old Swan Hall, housing more that a third of Occidental’s faculty. Renovations to the interior of Johnson Hall are in progress and will serve as the McKinnon Family Center for Politics and Global Affairs.

Veitch is a native of Los Angeles and graduated from Stanford University. His Harvard doctorate is in the History of American Civilization. He was an English professor at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. While serving as associate professor of literature and history, he serves as the humanities chair and as the associate provost before starting as dean for five years. His focus, while dean, has been on expanding the scope of Lang’s scope and size, taking advantage of the liberal arts college status.

As an author, Veitch penned American Superrealism: Nathanael West and the Politics of Representation in the 1930s, an award-winning University of Wisconsin Press publication. With his field of academic specialization, Veitch has included American Literature as well as cultural history, plus American film of the 19th and 20th centuries. Most recently, his research has regarded the history of higher education in the US. Veitch lives with his wife and their three children on the Occidental campus at the Wallis Annenberg’s President’s House.