The search for the new dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, dean of the College of Biblical Studies and dean of the College of Education and Human Studies is underway.
Beginning last month, the three positions have been advertised in the Christian Chronicle, and the chairs heading the search committees have been named. Carley Dodd has been named chair for the College of Arts and Sciences, John Weaver for the College of Biblical Studies andÂ Dr. Nancy Shankle for the College of Education and Human Studies.
The chairs are taking nominations from department heads to create committees for each search. Each committee will contain six to eight members. Dodd said he is looking for some specific attributes to create a varied committee.
“We will look for three criteria – departmental diversity, demographic diversity and time to devote to the committee,” Dodd said. “Once we get the nominations, sift through them and pick the committee members, that’s phase one, and we’re hoping to finish this within a week or two.”
The committee chairs will report to Dr. Robert Rhodes, provost of ACU. Rhodes said that the deadlines for the three dean positions will be in November in order to give enough time to review the applications, conduct phone and on-campus interviews and announce the positions.
“The goal is to be able to search and then request on-campus interviews and host those in the spring,” Rhodes said. “I would like by mid-spring to be able to announce those positions so whomever it is, especially if they have to move, we can give them enough time to join us. We’re looking at a July first start date.”
During this time, interims will be holding the three positions: Dr. Greg Straughn for the College of Arts and Sciences, Dr. Ken Cukrowski for the College of Biblical Studies and Dr. Donnie Snider for the College of Education and Human Studies.
Rhodes acknowledged that challenges sometimes accompany changes in administration, but he remains optimistic about how ACU is handling it.
“There are times where you have interims in place and they’re kind of just care-taking for the job, and there’s not a lot of forward movement,” Rhodes said. “This is a different group. They’re very skilled. All of them really aren’t missing a beat. They’re moving the college forward and are very engaged and individually impressive people.”
Rhodes said his hope was for each interim to apply for the permanent position.
Straughn said he has enjoyed working with the departments in the College of Arts and Sciences and is considering applying for the position as dean.
“I’ve not ruled it out. I’ve not made a final decision at this point, either,” Straughn said. “I’m waiting for the committee to finalize the description and qualities of the position, and I know that will happen pretty soon. I’m happy to serve right now and have been blessed by different opportunities to serve in different roles over the last couple of years.”