New School News

Media Studies Alumna Elissa Tenny Named President of SAIC

Elissa Tenny, an alumna of the School of Media Studies at The New School, was just named president of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

A former acting and vice dean at The New School, Tenny will step into her new role at SAIC on July 1, 2016, succeeding current President Walter E. Massey.

“The School of the Art Institute of Chicago has been a leader in art and design education for nearly 150 years, and I am humbled to have the opportunity to carry on the school’s legacy and help pave the way for the next generation of thinkers and makers,” Tenny said. “I have learned so much from our students, faculty and staff over the last five years and I am looking forward to leading the school as we head into our next 150 years.”

With over 35 years of experience in higher education, Tenny joined SAIC in 2010 as provost and senior vice president of academic affairs.

“Since joining SAIC, Elissa has played a pivotal role in elevating the academic strengths of the school’s interdisciplinary curriculum and reputation in Chicago and beyond, and we are very pleased she will serve as our next president,” said Robert Levy, Chairman of the Board of Trustees at SAIC.

For more information about the School of Media Studies, visit

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