WATERVILLE — Colby College announced Tuesday it had promoted a senior-level staff member to a new role overseeing admissions, advancement, communications and first-year financial aid.

Matthew T. Proto, vice president and chief institutional advancement officer of Colby College. Gabe Souza/Colby College

Matthew T. Proto has been named vice president and chief institutional advancement officer, the college announced. Proto joined Colby in 2015 and had most recently served as vice president for enrollment and communications and dean of admissions and financial aid.

Colby President David A. Greene said in a statement released to the news media that Proto has “helped transform Colby’s approach to admissions and communications, and I’m confident his leadership will continue to further our advancement efforts.”

“Matt has demonstrated remarkable capacity for effective outreach,” Greene said, “and those skills will be critical as we continue to engage our broader Colby community and seek support for the College’s highest priorities.”

A graduate of Yale University, Proto received a master’s degree in liberal studies at Wesleyan University in Connecticut and a doctorate in educational leadership at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Prior to joining Colby, Proto was a member of the admissions staff at Stanford University in California.


He has worked in multiple admissions roles, including director of scholar selection for the Morehead-Cain Scholars Program, associate director of admission and college counseling at Choate Rosemary Hall, a preparatory boarding school in Connecticut, and assistant director of admissions at Yale, also in Connecticut.

Proto is an advisory board member for the Education Finance Institute, serves as a board member for the Association of Independent School Admission Professionals, and is a faculty member at the Harvard College Summer Institute on College Admission.

Proto said he was “honored that President Greene asked me to lead advancement at a time when Colby has grown its reputation as one of the preeminent liberal arts colleges in the country.”

Proto will lead Colby’s advancement team nearly four years after the college launched “Dare Northward,” the largest campaign in liberal arts college history.

The college said its key priorities in the future include “aggressively recruiting highly qualified students from every social, cultural, and geographic background,” with programs such as the “Fair Shot Fund,” a $0 parent and guardian contribution initiative, and the Pulver Science Scholars Program.

Other priorities include investing in multidisciplinary programs and partnerships that create opportunities for students and faculty; providing ongoing support for athletics and recreation, including the new Harold Alfond Athletics and Recreation Center; increasing the Colby Museum of Art’s collections and programs; supporting a new model for post-graduate success through “DavisConnects,” which offers internships, research and global experiences; building a new space, the Gordon Center for Creative and Performing Arts; and driving the ongoing revitalization of downtown Waterville.

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