Last year the Academic Dean’s Office had a staff of four: Jonathan Spiro, Cathy Kozlik, Ingrid Johnston and Tony Peffer. Now, the office is down to just Spiro and Kozlik and it’s likely to stay that way until at least the spring semester.
Despite a search for an associate dean this summer, no one was hired for the position.
The search for the new associate academic dean came after Peffer left in the middle of last semester and Johnston left at the end of last semester.
Three candidates were flown in in June for interviews and to see if they would mesh with the campus, but according to Kozlik none of them worked out due to “family and other personal reasons.”
While the candidates were visiting campus, they went to lunch with students so they could ask questions and get their opinion of the campus and what a new dean would have to do.
Olivia Maher, a senior who was working on campus at the time, went on two of the lunches.
“I was wondering why I never heard of anything about who they had hired,” said Maher.
No one ever told the students who went on those lunches that the search had failed.
It’s been kept pretty quiet because Spiro, who is a full-time dean, and Kozlik, a part-time dean, have everything under control with the help of Kelly Beckwith, Head of the Academic Support Center, they said.
“It was frustrating, but we’re in good shape because Kelley Beckwith has been spending half her time here as the dean’s designee,” Spiro said.
Being the dean’s designee, Beckwith can help students with whatever a dean normally would do for students, like helping with schedules, professors, classes, and other academic issues.
Kozlik is also spending more time in the dean’s office this semester to make sure they have someone there at all times. Since she teaches business classes as well, she can’t be in the office all the time, which is where Beckwith is stepping in.
Spiro said that in the spring they are planning on bringing in another faculty member to be a half-time dean because they “love that model and it keeps deans in touch with faculty and with students.”
Though it was frustrating this summer after the search for a new dean had failed, Spiro said that once students were back on campus his mood totally changed.
He also said that there is never a time when there isn’t an academic dean for students to get help from.
“There is nothing for students to worry about,” said Spiro.