is the 1st President and CEO of Edward Waters University. Dr. Faison is a visionary and prolific higher education leader having set an audacious vision for EWU as a destination institution of Emerging Eminence.
Dr. A. Zachary Faison, Jr. took the helm of Edward Waters University (EWU), the State of Florida’s first independent institution of higher education and first Historically Black College or University (HBCU), in July 2018 post a unanimous vote by the University’s Board of Trustees making him the nation’s youngest HBCU President or Chancellor. Since that time President Faison has led in the development and implementation of an ambitious strategic plan and agenda for the institution, titled Eminence 2025. Under the leadership of President Faison, the institution has undergone a dynamic and historic transition having recently in June 2021 been authorized by its accrediting body, (the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges—SACSCOC) to move from a baccalaureate to master’s level degree-granting entity thereby ascending after 155 years from Edward Waters College (EWC) to Edward Waters University (EWU). Relatedly, in 2021 under President Faison’s leadership EWU was further approved to offer the institution’s first ever graduate degree program by SACSCOC, the Master of Business Administration (fully online MBA), while simultaneously achieving a successful SACSCOC fifth-year accreditation review, without recommendations, reaffirming EWU’s full accreditation through 2025. In 2022, the institution launched its second ever graduate degree program—the Master of Education Policy and Advocacy (MEPA) which is also offered fully online.
Named one of the HBCU Campaign Fund’s ‘Ten Most Dominant HBCU Leaders’ of 2022 and designated by the Jacksonville Business Journal as a ‘2021 Ultimate CEO’ and recognized by the Jacksonville Record & Observer as one of Jacksonville’s ‘Six Top Newsmakers of 2020’, President Faison with the support of a dynamically assembled team of dedicated academicians and administrators, has led EWU in achieving record high enrollment, extraordinary programmatic and academic profile advancement, and unprecedented fiscal, fundraising, and resource development success. Notably, and despite the challenges wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic, for the third consecutive year EWU experienced phenomenal enrollment growth as this past fall (Fall 2022) enrollment at Edward Waters University soared to over 1175 students (1181 for Fall 2022) marking the highest overall enrollment the institution has seen in nearly two decades. Having grown its enrollment by a remarkable 26.6% over the past three years, EWU has quickly become the fastest growing HBCU in the State of Florida and the fastest growing College or University in Jacksonville per published reports.
Equally noteworthy, under Dr. Faison’s leadership the institution eliminated its formerly existing multi-year multimillion dollar operating deficit and has now achieved three consecutive fiscal year-end (FY20, FY21, and FY22) operating net cash surplus’s for the first time in nearly twenty years. Additionally, EWU has raised its admissions standards in an effort to increase its competitive profile while simultaneously establishing the inaugural Honors College at Edward Waters securing new honors student cohorts (i.e., Alpha, Beta, Gamma, and now Delta Cohorts) boasting of an average 4.0 GPA and nearly 1150 on the SAT. President Faison also led EWU in securing a historically significant $3.5 million-dollar state funding increase in the University’s reoccurring state funding allocation paving the way for the forthcoming addition of new academic degree programs at EWU including new undergraduate degree programs in Forensic Science (successfully launched in Fall 2022), Computer & Information Science, Social Work, and Public Health as well as forthcoming new graduate master’s degree programs in Public Administration and Cybersecurity.
Additionally, under President Faison’s leadership EWU earned SACSCOC approval to offer the University’s first ever fully online undergraduate degree program (i.e., the Bachelor of Business in Organizational Management); launched the A. Philip Randolph Institute for Race, Law, Social Justice and Economic Policy; established the Charles H. Pearce Summer Institute and Bridge Program; secured an innovative corporate partnership with Follett Higher Education group to provide six-figure philanthropic support to the University and furnish new Chromebook laptop computers to every new first-time in college full-time Edward Waters University student through the year 2025; and led the contractual renegotiation necessary for the City of Jacksonville to directly fund a $4.4 million-dollar renovation of the University’s largest student residence facility and the $4.3 million-dollar new construction of the University’s first ever on-campus athletic stadium both completed in 2021.
Further, President Faison also recently led EWU in earning NCAA Division II membership for its intercollegiate athletic program for the first time in the institutions history while rejoining the historic Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) after a nearly century long hiatus. In addition, under his leadership EWU concurrently added five new sports to the institution, including its first ever women’s soccer, men’s volleyball, and men’s and women’s indoor track programs as well as the return of the university’s women’s golf program in collaboration with THE PLAYERS Championship. The University’s rapidly ascending trajectory under President Faison’s leadership is well chronicled as the institution earned back-to-back-to-back recognitions by the HBCU Campaign Fund as a Top 10 Smaller HBCU Rising for 2019, 2020, and 2021.
A native of Atlanta, Georgia, President Faison’s career exploits include distinguished professional experiences as a higher education executive administrator, educator, and attorney. Prior to his Presidential appointment, he served as the General Counsel & Vice President of External Affairs at Tuskegee University; Vice President for Enrollment Management & Student Affairs at Virginia Union University; Special Assistant to the President for Legal & Legislative Affairs, Community Affairs, and Economic Development; Chief of Staff; and Vice President of Institutional Advancement & Executive Director of the MVSU Foundation at Mississippi Valley State University.
As a scholar-educator, Dr. Faison currently holds academic rank as an associate professor of Business Administration and has held professorial appointments at both the undergraduate and graduate levels in various academic disciplines including Political Science and Criminal Justice. He is also a former state prosecutor having served as an Assistant District Attorney prosecuting criminal felony drug cases in Georgia. President Faison graduated Magna Cum Laude from Albany State University (ASU) with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in English where he was an ASU Presidential/Foundation Scholar, ASU Velma Fudge Grant University Honors Program Graduate, ASU National Merit Scholar Graduate, an inductee of the Alpha Kappa Mu National Honor Society, and upon graduation was awarded for being the highest-ranking student in the University’s Department of English & Modern Languages. He attended the University of Georgia School of Law (UGA) where he earned his Juris Doctorate (J.D.) and was a member of the UGA School of Law Executive Moot Court Board & UGA Law Moot Court team. He is a licensed member of the State Bar of Georgia and is admitted to practice before all of the state and federal bars of Georgia. President Faison has completed post-doctoral study as a graduate of the Harvard University Graduate School of Education’s Institute for Educational Management (IEM) and was a Millennium Leadership Initiative (MLI) Institute Fellow of the American Association of State Colleges & Universities (AASCU) & Association of Public Land-Grant Universities (APLU).
Additionally, he is a graduate of AASCU’s New President’s Academy and is a Gamma Cohort Fellow of the Higher Education Leadership Foundation (HELF). He also holds the Certification in Fundraising Management (CFRM) designation from The Lily Fundraising School of Philanthropy at Indiana University.
President Faison maintains active memberships with various local and national civic, professional, and community organizations. In 2020, he was appointed by Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry to serve as a member of the JEA Board of Directors (the eighth largest publicly owned electric utility in the United States and largest in Florida). He also serves as a trustee member of the Jacksonville Chamber, is a member of the Jacksonville Symphony Board of Directors, Visit Jacksonville Board of Directors, the Jacksonville Civic Council, Leadership Jacksonville, Rotary Club of Jacksonville, and was recently named an institutional director of the UNCF Board of Directors. Dr. Faison has received regional and national recognition for his outstanding leadership and achievements per his selection as a member of The Business Journals Influencers: Rising Stars 100; the National Bar Association (Top 40 Attorneys Under 40) the Jacksonville Business Journal (Top 40 Under 40) and has been specially recognized and honored by both of his alma maters— The University of Georgia and Albany State University—as amongst each of its respective 40 most distinguished alumni under 40.
He is the son of Alderman Faison, Sr. and Dr. Jewel J. Faison, and brother to Dr. Morgan Zacheya-Jewel Faison. President Faison has been blissfully married for fifteen years to Mrs. Tyciee L. Faison, who is also a seasoned higher education administrator/educator and seminary trained theologian.
“If there is anything more reprehensible than the practice of discriminiation upon a people because of race, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, it is for the people discriminated against to accept it without protest or resistance. It is an evidence of an utter lack of self-respect, the most priceless possession an individual or group can have, without which there can be no human dignity.”
– A. Philip Randolph, 1959
Asa Philip Randolph was a groundbreaking leader, organizer, and social activist who championed equitable labor rights for African American communities, becoming one of the most impactful civil rights and social justice leaders of the 20th century. His activism spanned 60 years, and included the organization of the largest labor union for Black workers in the United States and the coordination of two Marches on Washington (1941 and 1963).
Randolph spent the formative years of his early life in Jacksonville, Florida. He was born on April 15, 1889, in Crescent City, Florida, to an ordained minister in the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) church, the Rev. James William Randolph, and his wife, Elizabeth Robinson Randolph. In 1891, when he was three years old, his family moved to Jacksonville. He attended Edward Waters College (a Historically Black College founded in 1866) from ages fourteen to sixteen before transferring to the Cookman Institute (a Historically Black educational institute founded in 1872 and located in Jacksonville), from which he graduated as valedictorian in 1907.
In 1911, recognizing the constraints that racial segregation placed on his life in his native Florida, Randolph left Jacksonville for New York City. Initially he hoped for a life on the stage but redirected his talents to issues of fairness and equity in employment and civic life. During World War I, Randolph faced formidable odds as he worked to unionize African American shipyard workers and elevator operators. During this time, along with his friend and collaborator Chandler Owen, Randolph edited and published the Messenger magazine between 1917 and 1925, during which it served as a promotional vehicle for the Harlem Renaissance.
Randolph’s career as a labor leader took a new turn when he became the first president of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters in 1925, which by 1937 would become the first official African American labor union. After his victories in the arena of organized labor, in the 1940s, Randolph focused his attention on the larger goal of ending racial discrimination in government defense factories and desegregating the armed forces, both accomplished through presidential decrees. Becoming involved in additional civil rights work, he was a principal organizer of the proposed March on Washington in 1941, and the more famous 1963 March on Washington during which the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech.
On May 16, 1979, at age 90, Mr. Randolph passed away. He was cremated, and his ashes were interred at the A. Philip Randolph Institute in Washington, D.C.
There are several sites in Jacksonville that pay tribute to the legacy of A. Philip Randolph. He is the namesake of the A. Philip Randolph Academies of Technology, A. Philip Randolph Boulevard (formerly Florida Avenue), and the adjoining A. Philip Randolph Park on Jacksonville’s east side.
Phase One Instructions
In accordance with the advisement of the State of Florida and the City of Jacksonville authorities, EWC Administration has scheduled EWC staff the phased return to normal on-campus operations, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday beginning Monday, July 6, 2020. EWC faculty will return to campus on August 6, 2020.
As we transition back to campus, we ask for your patience, understanding, adaptability and flexibility, as this is a new experience for us all. It is imperative that all faculty, staff and students actively commit to adhering to the new processes that will be implemented to ensure the safety and wellbeing for one another, our families and our communities. It starts with each one of us and I believe together as a team we can rise to the challenge.
Consideration will be given for the implementation of alternative work arrangements for those employees who fall within the following parameters. These self-identified individuals are asked to contact the Office of Human Resources as soon as possible via email at email@example.com for further instructions:
- Aged 65 and above
- Pre-existing health conditions
- Chronic medical conditions or immunocompromised conditions that may prohibit their immediate return to on-campus work.
As previously communicated, EWC is continuing to adhere to all recommended regulations and guidelines from government authorities related to the containment of COVID-19. As an attempt to ensure safety, we will be distributing personal protection equipment (PPE) along with cleaning/sanitization supplies to all faculty and staff for the purpose of minimizing cross-contamination and maintaining individual work space in between Sodexo scheduled cleaning protocols. Laptops and webcams will also be assigned to support on-campus virtual meetings during this process. Employees are required to wear their ID badges and should contact the IT Helpdesk via firstname.lastname@example.org obtain an ID badge prior to July 6, 2020. All employees are required to properly wear the face mask provided by EWC or pre-approved face masks covering the nose and mouth when on campus. Masks are not required when the employee is in the office alone.
ALL employees are asked to respect this process. Employees resistant to complying with wearing face masks and all other precautionary protocols will be sent home. We have proactively implemented several preventative measures outlined below.
Preventative measures currently in place include:
- Utilizing no-touch thermometers to check for existing fevers.
- Deep cleaning and Sanitization Protocols: We have implemented deep cleaning and disinfection protocols for the entire campus community. These protocols will be enforced in addition to our already rigorous sanitization standards in place. Please be advised that Sodexo will need to access your office, so please be prepared to provide access if they do not have keys to your area. To contact cleaning facilities directly, please email or call 904-470-8164.
- We have placed posters that encourage wearing personal protection equipment (PPE), social distancing, , , and at various building entrances and other workplace areas where they are likely to be seen.
- Provided no-touch disposal receptacles for use by employees.
- To enforce social distancing, we have altered direct access with employees, continuing with virtual meeting orders, closed bathroom stalls, minimized the elevator use, placed floor marking and provided directional signage to control the movement throughout the campus.
- Directed employees to clean their hands often with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60-95% alcohol, or wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.
- Provided soap and water in the workplace. We have ensured that adequate supplies are maintained.
- Best Practices for Personal Health: Human coronaviruses are usually spread from an infected person to others through the air by coughing and sneezing, close personal contact (such as shaking hands), touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth nose or eyes before washing your hands, or (rarely) fecal contamination.
To reduce your risk of infection: Always wear provided masks unless you are in your office space alone. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands, and avoid close contact with people who are sick. Please refrain from gathering in groups. Please continue to practice appropriate social distancing, 6 feet.
Employee Travel: Travel for faculty and staff is suspended indefinitely, with exceptions authorized by the President & CEO only.
Travel: If any faculty or staff have traveled to any areas (nationally or internationally) where cases have been reported, please immediately notify the College of such. If exposed to the virus, we are asking those individuals to self-isolate as recommended by the CDC, the World Health Organization and the U.S. State Department.
Meetings: Staff and other meetings should be conducted by phone or video conference per the advisement of the area Vice President.
Classes: As of now, EWC requires all summer courses are to be delivered online. As such, students and faculty will remain off-campus.
Lunch: When leaving campus for lunch, please remain mindful of social distancing, proper hygiene and the risks of contracting COVID-19.
The safety and well-being of EWC students, faculty and staff members is our top priority. We are closely monitoring guidance by the CDC, World Health Organization and other public health authorities, taking proper health precautions where warranted. We are also encouraging the college community to take any signs of illness seriously and seek medical attention as needed.
Guidelines for Suspected Illness and When to Stay/Go Home:
- Employees who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are to stay home and not come to work until they are free of fever (100.4° F [37.8° C] or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g. cough suppressants). Employees should notify their supervisor and stay home if they are sick.
- Employees who appear to have acute respiratory illness symptoms (i.e. cough, shortness of breath) upon arrival to work or become sick during the day will be sent home immediately to seek medical consultation.
- Employees who are well but who have a sick family member at home with COVID-19 should notify their supervisor, the Office of Human Resources, and refer to CDC guidance for of their potential exposure.
To protect EWC from COVID-19 while ensuring continuity of operations, all sick employees should stay home and away from the workplace, respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene should be encouraged, and routine cleaning of commonly touched surfaces should be performed regularly.
In the next coming weeks, you will be receiving an influx of information to guide us through this process. We ask that you please utilize it as requested. Please check periodically for updates and information via the College website at, campus email, and the College’s social media outlets, as these are the primary means of communication. Further, you may also follow updates from the local news affiliates.
The Edward Waters College administration thanks you for all you are doing to respond to the coronavirus. We will continue to reassess our practices based on developments and will advise you of any changes. Additionally, we encourage all of you to reach out to your immediate supervisor with any questions that may arise. Understandably, this is a time of uncertainty and stress; however, we appreciate your commitment to EWC in the face of these unprecedented challenges.
As we transition on Monday, March 23, 2020 to an “Interim Remote Work Period” via a teleworkmodality during this COVID-19 outbreak, we want to ensure that the intentions and expectations of performance and productivity are clearly communicated to all faculty and staff of Edward Waters College (EWC). Working from home does not constitute time-off or a relaxed work ethic. Rather, Telework is executing the same work obligations, but in an alternative location.
Remote working is most efficient when employees and supervisors communicate, plan and respond. Therefore, employees approved to work remotely from home on a temporary basis must:
- Be equally, if not more intentional, on response time
- Answer phones within three (3) rings, unless assisting others
- Check and clean voicemails regularly; adjust voicemails greetings appropriately
- Continue to use prompt and courteous EWC greetings when answering calls/emails
- Read and reply to emails on a heightened level for continuity and seamless process management
- Be prepared to meet as normal/as needed via virtual/teleconference meetings per Supervisor direction
- Be mindful of background noise
Please understand that as you work from home, consistent communication is critical as email and telecommunication will be the only lifelines between internal and external constituents. Failure to timely respond to directives from your supervisor and/or job related requests for support from students, faculty, staff, and outside business partners and constituencies may constitute non-compliance and result in the use of vacation time. Therefore, ensure your availability and conduct yourself as if present in your on-campus office.
Employees approved to telecommute must have the following items to ensure appropriate functioning of remote work environments include:
- Computer or laptop
- Internet (Comcast/Xfinity and Spectrum are offering free internet service)
- Forwarding land line or cell phone number to receive EWC calls
- Access to EWC remote desktop, files (electronic/paper), and other materials necessary for continued workflow
Specific details will be emailed by Mr. David Simfukwe, Director of Information Technology
& Telecommunications regarding directions on call forwarding and remote access to campus. Faculty and staff can also contact the IT Help Desk at 904-470-8179, or their immediate supervisor for area related questions and issues.
Please contact the Office of Human Resources for additional questions and/or clarity regarding the Interim Remote Work Report via email at HumanResources@ewc.edu or call 904-470-8237 or 904-470-8230.
Starting September 7, 2021 from 10:00am-1:00pm and occurring the first week of every month EWU students can walk-in &/or make an appointment to secure a time slot for the various workshops offered:
- Mondays : Mock Interviews (20 minute increments) -Students should come in dressed with professional attire and a description of the employment opportunity they are preparing for &/or seeking. Practice interviews will take place to help them prepare.
- Tuesdays: “Talk Tuesday”- consults will be done with students. They can come into the Career Center for career tests, guidance, questions &/or discussions on career-related topics.
- Wednesdays: “Wednesday Writing”- Students will be able to work on resumes, cover letters, portfolios, etc.. at the career center and have them reviewed.
- Thursdays: “Teach Me Thursday” – Every first Thursday of the month, a specific topic will be discussed. (i.e. personal development, networking, co-working, benefits of social media within certain career fields, guests will also be requested to speak on various topics as well, etc…)
- Fridays: “TGFO” Thank God for Opportunities- New jobs/internship announcements will be posted on the EWU Career website. EWU students can also come into the office to discuss available opportunities as well.
- Complete clearance with the Office of Student Accounts.
- The Non-refundable $100 Housing Reservation Fee MUST be paid to reserve a room.
- Register for Housing with 12 credit hours, YOU MUST HAVE 12 CREDIT HOURS TO KEEP YOUR ROOM RESERVATION.
BE EDUCATED. BE EMPOWERED. RESERVE YOUR SPACE!
- Make sure you are financially cleared for the Fall 2021 semester.
- Register for Housing with 12 credit hours, YOU MUST HAVE 12 CREDIT HOURS TO KEEP YOUR RESERVATION.
- Students must pay a non-refundable $100 Reservation Fee at the EWC Cashier’s Window, online by visiting the Student Account’s page, or over the phone by calling 904-470-8246.
- Clear all institution holds. Holds will prevent room assignments.
- Check your available financial aid, or other funding sources, to be certain you have enough funding for your educational costs. See your financial aid counselor. Don’t procrastinate!
- Communicate with Preferred Roommate about where you will reside – Both must qualify for selected building.
- Housing assignments are made on a first come, first serve basis. Incomplete applications will not receive room assignments until all requirements are satisfied.
August 31, 2019 07:00:00 PM
The Edward Waters College Emergency Management Team continues to closely monitor Hurricane Dorian, which is expected to be a Category 4 hurricane upon landfall in Florida.
Due to the easterly trajectory of the storm and its current speed, it has been determined that movement of the remaining on-campus students from their residence halls to the JWJ facility will not occur until further notice. Cafeteria hours will operate regular weekend hours on Sunday, September 1st and adjusted hours for Monday, September 2nd. Brunch will be from 11:00a.m. – 1:00p.m. and dinner will be from 5:00p.m. – 6:00p.m.
Be advised, you will receive official communication from the College via email, social media, the EWC Website, and Tiger Alert throughout the duration of the storm. We will continue to monitor weather conditions and update you accordingly.
The Mission of Residence Life and Housing is to provide a living learning experience that that supports all residential EWC students. We strive to create a safe wholesome living and learning environment that is conducive to the overall development of our students that aids in their academic success, leadership development, positive decision making and responsible citizenship. Services are provided to our students in a friendly, courteous and efficient manner which helps to promote academic success.
Mr. Quentin McBeth
Assistant Director of Housing Operations
August 16, 2019
*All incoming Freshmen students are mandated to be in attendance for this occasion. Freshmen female attire is black skirts and white blouse. Male Freshmen attire is black dress pants, white collar shirt and neck tie.
Jacksonville, Fla. – Edward Waters College is proud to announce that the Department of Business Administration has been granted the highly esteemed International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE) accreditation — a nationally and internationally based accreditation. The Department initiated a relationship with IACBE through membership status. Over the years, the EWC Department of Business Administration has proven itself worthy of this highly sought after status.
“The Department of Business Administration strives to prepare our students for responsible positions in business, industrial, and government entities. This accreditation signifies that we are training our students beyond the basic standards. In addition, we are training our students to be confident, competent, ethical, and responsible business managers and leaders in the today’s society,” said Dr. Francis Ikeokwu, chair of the business department at Edward Waters College. “We will continue to apply our students and push them as they develop and graduate from our program and the College.”
According to their Web site, the IACBE’s accreditation principles are designed to promote and stimulate excellence in business education, and each accreditation principle is linked to one or more characteristics of excellence in business education. IACBE accreditation signifies that the business curriculum and co-curricular experiences provide students with the knowledge and skills needed to function effectively in business and industry. For more information on IACBE visit http://www.iacbe.org.
Edward Waters College has received specialized accreditation for its business programs through the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE) located at 11374 Strang Line Road in Lenexa, Kansas, USA.
For a listing of accredited programs, click here.