In the final stages of the provost search, four candidates remain. And now with the search committee rests the responsibility of recommending candidates who best fit the role for the most important position at USF after the presidency.
The search committee, selected by USF President Judy Genshaft, is made up of about 20 people, consisting of members of the administration, faculty, two staff members, two community representatives and even students, said Stuart Silverman, dean of the Honors College and the committee chairman for the search.
In the beginning of the fall semester, USF advertised in The Chronicle Of Higher Education some of the criteria the committee wanted the candidates to meet. A candidate needed to be a scholar, an academic leader, somebody with a history of teaching and a history of significant administrative experience, among other traits.
“We were presented with a possible set of criteria at the very first meeting, and we shaped what we got into the qualifications … that appeared in that advertisement,” Silverman said.
The committee met last Friday after all the candidates visited USF, Silverman said, and will meet again sometime next week to finalize a report that will be given to Genshaft.
“If all things go well, (the committee) will turn in a report to President Genshaft a week from (Monday),” he said.
Silverman added that the committee would not rate the candidates, but it instead will write a report citing the qualities of each candidate.
“(The committee) is going to give the president a list of candidates that it recommends and describe why (the committee) recommends those candidates.”
Silverman said the search committee first received 70 applications from which eight were chosen to conduct phone interviews, and out of those eight, the list was whittled down to the four candidates that visited USF over the last two weeks.
The four provost candidates that remain are: Anthony Garro, provost and vice president of Lehman College of the City University of New York; Stephen Lehmkuhle, vice president of academic affairs from the University of Missouri System; Laura F. Lindsay, executive assistant to chancellor and professor of mass communications at Louisiana State University; and Renu Khator, USF’s interim provost.
Each of the four candidates that came to USF were on campus for two days and met with the search committee for more than two hours.
While visiting campus, each candidate was able to meet with groups representing different areas of USF. In each meeting, students, faculty members and administrators were able to fill out a feedback form on the particular candidate. According to Silverman, the forms were turned in to the search committee and would be taken into consideration at the time the committee writes the final report.
Silverman added that about 100 forms were gathered over the two-week interviewing period. Some of the groups meeting with the different candidates were: the Administrative and Professionals Council, the University Support Personnel Service Senate and the Minority Faculty and Staff Association, among others.
Genshaft had the opportunity to interview each of the four candidates during a dinner on their first day visiting USF. After the committee turns in its final report sometime next week, Silverman said Genshaft will be the one to make a decision to either appoint one of the four remaining candidates, or if she is not satisfied with the recommendations, to ask the committee to open up the search for new candidates.