Provost could ‘immediately’ fill enrollment post

Elizabeth Beilman

Bob Owen, vice president for Information Technology, said a search committee to find a new associate vice president for Enrollment Management would make its recommendation to the provost after a meeting on Monday afternoon.

Owen, head of the search committee, said it must recommend one or more applicants to Gordon Emslie, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, but Emslie ultimately does not have to hire any of those recommendations.

Emslie said if a worthy candidate or candidates are recommended, he “would move almost immediately.”

Even if this were the case, he said it is highly unlikely someone would be hired before spring break.

The search committee previously held open forums for finalists Elizabeth Wolfe, director of recruitment at Marshall University in Huntington, W.Va., and Patsy Reynolds, director of admissions at Southern Illinois University Carbondale in Carbondale, Ill.

“I want someone who’s going to be a good team player for WKU,” Emslie said.

Dale Brown has been interim associate vice president for Enrollment Management since April. Brown replaced Dean Kahler, who is now working with NAVITAS at WKU.

Brown said the vice president’s role is to work with the admissions office, registrar’s office, financial aid office and the college readiness program to manage enrollment at the university.

“I think it’s key to work closely with those divisions and with the students to make a successful transition,” Brown said.

The search process for a new vice president first began in November, Owen said.

He said a paper screen then took place in January to choose candidates for phone interviews.

Owen said among those applicants, Wolfe and Reynolds were invited to campus for more extensive forums and interviews.

“For both candidates, we offered a number of opportunities for the campus community to talk to them,” Owen said.

These included open forums with the Academics Affairs staff, enrollment staff, regional campus directors, faculty and staff, students, the president’s administrative counsel and the counsel of academic teams, he said.

“Candidates took five minutes to talk about their background, and then it was opened up for questions from the audience,” Owen said.

He said the search committee also had panel interviews with the two applicants individually.