AAUP discusses search for new university president

By on September 26, 2016

By Jerad Godsave–

The ongoing search for a permanent university president is the main priority for the University of Louisville chapter of the American Association of University Professors.

At the meeting on Sept. 23, the chapter discussed a survey conducted internally among AAUP members to evaluate criteria for selecting the president position. This job analysis considers 20 dimensions used to evaluate and characterize administrative jobs used by the National Association of AAUP. The U of L chapter has added six additional criteria. These additional criteria were adapted from qualification areas used by Duke, Iowa, and ExComm input. The survey requires members to assign desirability to each quality ranking from negative to positive. The dimensions are based on the ‘Five Factor Model’ of personality.

The survey is a solution from a request by the faculty senate to provide feedback on the president selection. The hope of the AAUP is to have an internal survey by members first, a faculty senate survey second, the entire faculty third and eventually incorporate the student body into the conversation. There’s some disagreement among AAUP members concerning the evaluation methodology used to rank a candidate for the office. The AAUP executive committee proposed this survey methodology in order to influence the board of trustees who select the candidate.

Avery Kolers is president of the U of L AAUP chapter.

“As of now, the board is not able to appoint a candidate for the office,” Kolers said during the meeting.

A chief goal of AAUP members is to strive for transparency at the institution. That goal is echoed by Koler’s thoughts when asked how confident he is about the task of a university president position being filled by a suitable replacement.

“I think if the university is independent of the governor’s political whims, the president of U of L is a great job for an academic leader. If the university is under the governor’s thumb, then nobody in their right mind would want the job.”

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