By Kelsi Peace, Features Editor
The only thing harder than filling some “big shoes” is deciding who should fill them.
With the announced retirement of Dr. Colleen Durrington, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, the Search and Review Committee formed to determine who will succeed Durrington as the next dean.
Dr. Carley Dodd, committee chair and professor of communication, said the committee will meet with the provost later this week to receive its charge, final directions and specific criteria.
The committee is composed of eight professors from different departments within the College of Arts and Sciences.
According to the university’s advertisement for the position, responsibilities include “recruitment and evaluation of staff and faculty; curricular planning and development; professional development; strategic planning; budget management; encouragement and support for excellence in teaching, research, service and grant-writing; and oversight of the national accreditation for programs.”
Dodd said the advertisement appeared in the Christian Chronicle and the Chronicle of Higher Education.
For now, “the number of applications and nominations changes every few days,” said Provost Dwayne VanRheenen, which makes it difficult to determine how many applied.
Candidates for the position have come from within the university as well as from outside it, VanRheenen said.
While specific criteria for the position has not been determined yet, certain general guidelines exist for selecting a dean, Dodd said.
For example, candidates should have a Ph.D. in a field within the college, the ability to work with people and leadership experience, Dodd said.
“There are a lot of ways to measure leadership,” Dodd said, explaining that leadership experience can be in the form of a coordination position, chairing a department or leading within a church, community or research field.
“Obviously, you want management, direction and vision,” Dodd said. Applicants submitted a list of five references, a curriculum vitae, which includes transcripts, a resume and a list of publications and a letter of purpose.
After reviewing the applications and nominations, Dodd said he expects the committee will interview the top candidates before making a recommendation to the provost, who will then make the final decision.
“I’m sure we’ll be blessed with some good candidates,” Dodd said.
The position will begin in fall of 2007. Applications and nominations can be sent to: Office of the Provost, Search Committee for Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Abilene Christian University, ACU Box 29103, Abilene, TX 79699.