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YSU will hire search firm to recruit new provost



Published: Fri, December 6, 2013 @ 12:07 a.m.

By Denise Dick

denise_dick@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

Youngstown State University will hire a search firm to recruit a replacement for the outgoing provost/vice president for academic affairs.

University trustees’ University Affairs Committee passed a resolution approving the recruitment at a meeting Thursday.

Ikram Khawaja has held the position since 2008, serving as interim provost for more than a year before that. He’s been at YSU since 1968 and plans to retire June 30. He had retired once before in 2002, then returned as interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences from July 2005 to July 2007.

YSU President Randy Dunn estimated the search, which would include the firm’s recruiting and building a pool of candidates, would cost between $50,000 and $70,000.

Dunn said that in consulting with personnel in academic affairs, there’s consensus that a firm would be helpful in expanding the pool of qualified candidates considering the relatively short time frame.

The committee opted at the same meeting to table creation of a director of veterans/military affairs to develop programming for veteran/military students, recruit prospect students and administer the new Veterans Center among other duties.

The Veterans Center is under construction on Wick Avenue.

“We may be premature in creating this position,” said Trustee Ted Roberts.

He pointed to the recent hiring of Gary Swegan to the new position of associate vice president for enrollment planning and management. With the university’s strained finances, Roberts said he’d like input from Swegan on such a position.

Trustee Harry Meshel said the position would pay for itself.

“They walk in with a check to pay for everything,” he said of veteran/military students.

YSU isn’t doing enough to attract them to campus, Meshel said.

Although the position description doesn’t list it, Meshel said the person selected also should be a veteran.

“The important thing is to talk to someone with the same background,” he said. “They need to be sitting across talking to somebody who’s been through it and done that.”

Other trustees agreed, but said they wanted input from Swegan who started in the new associate vice president post last month.

At an Intercollegiate Athletics Subcommittee meeting Thursday, Ronald Strollo, executive director of athletics, reported on graduation, academic progress and grade point averages among YSU’s student athletes. The graduation rate for 2013 was 62 percent, which tied 2005 for the highest rate during the last 10 years, he said.

Spring 2013 saw the highest overall student athlete cumulative GPA since the university began recording it with 3.09, 13 varsity teams had a cumulative GPA of more than 3.0 and a record 57 percent of student athletes had a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher in 2012-13.


Comments

1formerdemliberal(182 comments)posted 7 months, 3 weeks ago

$50,000 - $70,000 for a headhunter consultant for a provost search? Don't forget about that nice six-figure salary needed to lure some career staffer into that position.

Gee, that consulting money could be used towards hiring a new faculty member, additional student research assistants, or funding research conference travel. And the public, including the Vindy, always comes down on the heads of faculty when advocating budget cuts.

Administrative junk like this is just the tip of the iceberg regarding inefficient allocation of resources in higher education.

Suggest removal:

2southsidedave(4777 comments)posted 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Higher ed always distributes its resources to filling the professional positions first, no expense spared and any money left over goes toward funding lower-level positions...

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3123goz(513 comments)posted 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Thank heaven they got rid of a bunch of part timers just trying to make a buck so they can get another elitist on the payroll.
Consulting firm my behind. What is HR and the admin for?

Suggest removal:

4grand4dad(195 comments)posted 7 months, 3 weeks ago

Agree with you 100%. The 'experts' in HR should and the administration should be able to run a search for a provost. It's absolutely disgusting and a waste of public funds to be hiring these search firms to fill these kinds of positions.

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5lumper(281 comments)posted 7 months, 3 weeks ago

spend those student's and taxpayers' money !!! let's see just how irresponsible we can be !!! so what if this provost never actually did anything significant. let's make sure we spend a small fortune on his departure !!!!! i'l bet ole "ikkie " never brought a dime into the university, but attended all out of town seminars without fail and spent all the money he could as long as it wasn't his.

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