Dean search nears completion

Clare Lowther

The search is almost over.

Since last semester, Western has been searching for a dean to run the College of Health and Human Services. The college has not had a dean since its inception last year.

A search committee has narrowed the field to three candidates: John Bonaguro, Robert Fox and Mary Elizabeth Stivers.

Bonaguro, assistant dean of Health and Human Performance at Ithica College in N.Y., met with committee members two weeks ago.

Fox, chairman of the department of Speech and Hearing Science at Ohio State University, came to the Hill on Monday.

And Stivers, associate vice president for Academic Affairs for Academic Research at California State University, is scheduled to meet with the committee on Monday.

The committee has set a July 1 deadline for having the position filled.

“For any dean position, we are looking for someone with strong leadership, a good vision for the future … and the abilities to work with both faculty and students and to help the college become the very best possible,” Provost Barbara Burch said.

The university has been advertising to fill the position since fall 2002.

The College of Health and Human Services was established first as the School of Health and Human Services in fall 2001. It became the College of Health and Human Services in fall 2002. The college houses such departments as Nursing, Social Work and Communication Disorders. It employs between 65 and 70 full-time faculty members.

The search committee consists of about 12 members, including representatives from every department in the college, one undergraduate student, one graduate student, a representative for the department heads and one community member.

Louella Fong, Consumer and Family Sciences department head and a member of the search committee, said they got about 30 applications for the position.

The committee then narrowed those applicants down to about six candidates.

“The process is to review all applications and look at how they match up to the position requirements,” Fong said.

The committee interviewed the candidates by phone and invited three to come to Western for face-to-face interviews.

Burch said the salary for the position would be competitive with that of other universities. She said, however, it would be independently negotiated and partly based on the candidate’s level of experience.

James Dunn has served as interim dean of the college since 2001. He said the job involves general administration of the college, faculty recruiting and management of the budget.

“It’s just the same as any of the other academic colleges,” he said.

Dunn is not on the search committee, but he has met with several candidates and attended the open forums with the candidates.

Dunn said he would like to go into optional retirement on June 30.

“I’m excited about our college getting a new person to step up and fill this position,” he said.

Reach Clare Lowther at [email protected]