Wednesday, March 26, 2014

I'll take mine poached, please

The university announced this morning (hours after it had been leaked to the local media) the name of our new President. He is a layperson - the first non-Jesuit in our history to lead the institution. From what I've read, he is both a devout Catholic and a dynamic, results-getting leader.

He is also currently the chancellor at our cross town, public university rival.

He has only been there two years; we've now put our rival in pretty much the same position we were after the departure of our previous president, who had only been here two years.

It could be just me, but I find this a bit in bad taste. There is that old saying about not performing certain bodily functions where you live/eat/work; this is much the same situation. We do partner with our rival for certain programs.

One down, a number of others to go. We put off the search for a new provost until a new president was hired. Same with a new business dean and athletics director. Our director of admissions resigned last week.

But it wasn't until our men's basketball coach announced last Friday that he was leaving for Virginia Tech that the press started nattering on about a "leadership gap".


The university has been incredibly stable for a very, very long time. What we are seeing now is simply the loosening of the economy (more opportunities out there for the people who have left) coupled with natural turnover. Given the state of higher education, it may actually be a boon that so many leadership positions are turning over; it's a perfect time to redefine ourselves and position the university for another hundred plus years of life.

We'll see.

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