Dr. Bardo became president in July 2012. He transformed the vision of the university, leading it through a period of rapid growth focused on applied learning for students and the economic growth of the region.

Dr. Bardo began his career at Wichita State as an assistant professor of sociology and also taught and conducted research in the Hugo Wall Center for Urban Studies. During his time at WSU, he obtained a Fulbright Scholarship to Australia where he and his wife Deborah studied Americans as migrants and had a sabbatical appointment at the University of Wales at Swansea in social policy.

After leaving WSU, Dr. Bardo held appointments of growing leadership responsibility at Southwest Texas State University, the University of North Florida, Bridgewater (MA) State College and Western Carolina University, where he served as chancellor from 1995 to 2011 before returning to Wichita State.

He was born in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1948. He grew up in that area and graduated from Oak Hills High School. After high school, Dr. Bardo attended the University of Cincinnati, where he received a bachelor’s degree in economics (1970). He also studied economics and social policy at the University of Southampton, England, during his junior year.

After graduating from Cincinnati, Dr. Bardo received a master’s degree in sociology from Ohio University (1971) and a Ph.D. in sociology (1973) from Ohio State University. He also attended the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard.