District leader Karla Fisher is withdrawing from her role as provost

Photo courtesy of AZ Humane Society

Provost Dr. Karla Fisher left her position with Maricopa County Community College District Feb. 12.

After working in higher education for the past two decades, the former provost is moving to a corporate role that aims to understand and support the research needs of education leaders. 

“Leaving Maricopa is certainly bittersweet. We’ve accomplished a lot, but there is always more to do. I’m also excited to tackle new challenges in a new role,” Fisher said after a recent email interview. Although she will miss her position as provost, she is looking forward to this next chapter.

Fisher has made an incredible impact at MCCCD through her transformational work with Guided Pathways, Developmental Education Redesign, student affairs, international education and much more. Her immense effort has led to a tremendous increase in student success. 

“My favorite part [about being a part of MCCCD] has been and will always be the people. Building a high-functioning and productive team has been such a joy,” Fisher said. Later in February, she will join Qualtrics as chief industry advisor for P-20 Education. P-20 Education’s goal is to create smoother and more integrated educational experiences for students through Academic and Career Pathways. 

Looking back at her studies, she completed her Bachelor of English and Master of Communications at St. Mary’s University and achieved her Doctor of Educational Administration at the University of Texas in Austin. “I found the interception of literature and history in studying the Romantics and Modernists,” Fisher said.  Early in her education, the former provost planned to major in history but later switched to English.  

Moreover, she chose an English degree because of her love for the subject, but she claims, at the time, she never knew where it would end up taking her. “I think students today are more focused on career outcomes, which is great. But it’s important to be sure the intellectual curiosity and personal connection are also there,” Fisher said. 

Alongside the impact made on student education, she has also spent time at local Humane Societies. In addition, her and her husband care for two Chihuahuas, Snack and Eddie, a fuzzy mutt named Bentley, and two cats, Scout and Julia.     

As Fisher prepares for this next chapter in her life, MCCCD acknowledges and honors her commitment as provost. The district excitedly looks forward to the future accomplishments in her new position as chief industry advisor for P-20 Education. We speak on behalf of the entire staff and student body when we say we are deeply grateful for her dedication and time with us.