Members approve search committee for new vice chancellor
The Syracuse University Senate met for the second time this semester and discussed the search committee that will seek out the new vice chancellor, as well as Utica College’s curriculum and women’s safety on campus.
At the beginning of Wednesday evening’s meeting, Agenda Committee Chair Bruce Carter announced the senate-elected Student Association president Wayne Horton will serve as the student representative on the agenda committee.
‘I like to think of the agenda committee as a funnel with many sprouts,’ Carter said in an interview last month. ‘We facilitate issues and are in charge of getting them to the correct committees. One student is elected to serve on the agenda committee and is responsible for making needs aware to the senate.’
At the meeting, the senate approved a panel of people nominated to be on the search committee. Last week, each senator received the list of names and a brief biography of the 13 members nominated to be on the search committee.
‘The agenda committee went through a complex process going through a very large number of names,’ Carter said. ‘We asked people from each college to serve. Not everyone said yes.’
The panel consists of several professors, one dean, one graduate student and one undergraduate student. Many have served on search committees in the past, such as law professor William Banks, who was on the last vice chancellor search committee, and School of Education Dean Douglas Biklen, who has taught at SU for 36 years and was on the search committee to hire the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.
The two students on the search committee are Carlos Perez, a graduate student majoring in computer science, and Clarence Cross III, University Union president and a senior broadcast journalism major.
‘Everybody who is on this list actually brings a variety of different things to the process,’ Carter said in an interview.
The search committee will search for a new vice chancellor within the university community and present potential candidates to Chancellor Nancy Cantor in January.
‘(The new vice chancellor) should be someone who can work well with others and understands the different aspects of the university,’ Interim Vice Chancellor and Provost Eric Spina said after the meeting.
‘It should be someone who looks out for the greater good of the university and not just one program. The new vice chancellor should be someone who likes interacting with students, alumni, faculty and staff and should have 42 hours in a day to work,’ Spina said with a smile.
Although the meeting moved quickly, the topic that attracted the most attention was a name change for a major in Utica College.
Currently, Utica College offers a bachelors degree in ‘Spanish and French’ but the curriculum committee proposed it be changed to ‘foreign language’ even though Utica College does not offer language classes outside of Spanish and French.
‘I think the expectation is that it will expand, but currently it is only in French and Spanish,’ said senator and Professor Bob Gates. ‘We could call it a B.A. in our only languages,’ he said drawing laughter from the senators.
One senator asked why Utica College’s curriculum was pertinent to SU.
‘It’s a question I asked myself when I arrived,’ Cantor said, who led the meeting. ‘It’s a long standing agreement. I’m not saying it makes sense, I’m saying that’s the way it is.’
Spina explained that Utica College used to be associated with SU. When they separated in the early ’90s, SU agreed to remain a part of some of the funding and decision making for Utica College. Diplomas from Utica College have SU’s name on them, so SU must be a part of the decision concerning their curriculum.
In the end, the senate approved the new major title.
Before the meeting came to a close, Women’s Concerns Committee Chair Leslie Bender updated the senate on what her committee was currently working on.
‘We are thinking about the issue of safety on campus for students, particularly women, with all the crime on campus,’ she said.
Bender encouraged more people to join the committee and to bring her suggestions and concerns regarding safety.
Tina Notas, a senator on the committee of administrative operations and a junior environmental policy major at the State University of New York College of Environmental School of Forestry, said she also thinks more people should join the committee.
‘They deal with a lot of concerns that are related to a large percentage of the student body, so it would be good to have more student representation,’ she said after the meeting.
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