Amanda Smith, Ph.D.

Chief Academic and Product Officer

Amanda Smith leads the Academic Services and Product team that enables the delivery of partner universities’ high-quality online degree programs. With more than two decades of experience in education, Amanda is passionate about promoting higher education that empowers student success.

Before joining AP, Amanda served as Vice Provost of a private, post-secondary online institution and previously as VP of Curriculum & Development at Curriculum Technology. She also worked as a K-12 teacher and curriculum coach for the first 11 years of her career.

Amanda’s professional path was inspired by her grandparents, educators who started a private school in 1974, and she delights in working alongside instructional leaders of the regionally accredited, community-serving institutions that share AP’s mission.

Amanda holds a B.A. in Liberal Studies and Teacher Education from California State University Fresno, an M.S. in Cross-Cultural Studies in Education from National University, and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Denver. In her spare time, Amanda is a competitive equestrian. When not chasing dogs and riding horses, she’s Aunty Mandy to two beautiful nieces.

What traits do you admire in a leader?

Vision, confidence, and the ability to take action; kindness, advocacy, and the ability to demonstrate vulnerability.

Which AP culture pillar resonates most with you and why?

Transformative. To me, it encapsulates all of the others. To be transformative is to cause a marked change in someone or something. When I think about the other pillars – student centered, empowered, driven, collaborative and caring – I see transformation. Transformation in how we help to expand access and change students’ lives, transformation in how we empower partners and the communities they serve; transformation in how we take action, and work together to deliver on our mission in the most impactful way possible.

What would you name your autobiography?

Barn to Boardroom