Michael Plater, Ph.D.
President, Strayer University
As Strayer University’s academic visionary, Dr. Michael Plater sets the agenda for delivering a rigorous, innovative and quality education that helps adult learners compete in today’s global economy.
After beginning his career in management in the private sector and before joining Strayer University, Dr. Plater served as the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at North Carolina A&T State University, where he managed 400 faculty and staff in 13 academic departments and five affiliated academic programs.
Dr. Plater also served as the associate dean of Brown University’s Graduate School. In addition, he taught an undergraduate management course, and the “capstone” business policy/strategic management classes in the Master of Business Administration program at the University of Florida.
He joined Strayer University in 2010 as provost and chief academic officer, and was appointed president in May 2012.
Raised by a single parent, Dr. Plater learned firsthand how education transforms lives. He attended public city schools in Washington, D.C., until the age of 14, at which time he earned a scholarship to Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire. After graduation, he went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in economics from Harvard University, an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business and a doctorate in American Studies from the College of William and Mary.
His commitment to teaching and learning has led Dr. Plater to focus on educating adult learners and identifying the best instructional methods for adults who must balance work, family and education. He understands this delicate balance well – while pursuing his doctoral degree, he and his wife both worked full-time while raising two children.
Dr. Plater’s goal as president is to “Pay it Forward” – giving ahead instead of giving back – by helping make education more accessible to more people, especially to adult learners. Dr. Plater’s own efforts to Pay it Forward encourage Strayer University students, faculty and alumni to do the same, multiplying the transformative effect of education on individuals and communities.