May 082005
Authors: Cari Merrill

Just as students are winding down after finals, work is just beginning in the Office of the Provost.

The office recently announced the candidates for Vice Provost for Undergraduate Studies and the Vice Provost for Graduate Studies.

Candidates for the VPUS are Professor Irene Vernon, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Engineering Tom Siller and Associate Dean of the College of Liberal Arts Alan Lamborn.

Peter Dorhout, Interim Provost for Graduate Studies, is the candidate for the VPGS.

Open forums were held for the campus to have the opportunity to interact with the candidates. A question-and-answer session was included. Siller thought his forum went smoothly, but was disappointed more students did not participate.

"This whole process didn't have a lot of students in it," Siller said. "That was kind of disappointing to me."

Anyone on campus was welcome, but it is estimated that 15 to 20 students were in attendance.

The forums presented the candidates with the chance to tackle the issues they think need to be addressed at CSU as well as the ways they plan on handling those issues if they are selected said Sandra Woods, chair of the Vice Provost Search Committee and Interim Vice Provost.

At his forum, Dorhout hoped to speak about his plan for CSU and its students as well as speak about investing wisely over the next 10 years.

The VPUS is responsible for tasks relating to undergraduates. He or she will handle graduation, ROTC, the summer session as well as the general catalog and other duties, Woods said.

Matters dealing with the graduate studies program are handled by the VPGS. This position carries with it a number of duties. Some of the responsibilities include recruitment and retention of students, promoting the graduate program and implementing the policies of the graduate school according to the Provost Web site, The VPGS will also fill the position of Assistant President of Research.

Dorhout and Siller were the only two candidates reached for comment and both are excited to help CSU become a better school.

"I think it's a very important job," Dorhout said. "Graduate students contribute 20 percent (of the student population) to CSU. I think they deserve attention by the institution. I think graduate education was my calling."

There is no time limit on how long the position can be held by an individual. But a short amount of time can have negative effects as well as holding the position for too long of a time.

Positions like VPUS and VPGS are usually reviewed after a person has held the position for five years, Siller said. Too short of a stint in the job will lead to things not getting done and issues not being followed through with.

The door swings the other way as well. Retaining the position for too long means that the VP will run out of ideas and not be effective at their job anymore, Dorhout said.

The VPUS and the VPGS report to the Provost, Tony Frank.

Woods expects a decision before the end of May.

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