A tough transition

The new CLA dean will take on a large responsibility in the second largest school.

As shown in our news section this week, the search for a dean to oversee the College of Liberal Arts is still underway. Headhunting firm Isaacson, Miller will present a group of candidates to administrators. A final decision is expected by the end of this semester.

We’re a bunch of students from the School of Media and Communication speculating about what we want to see in a dean for another school, and the irony isn’t lost on us, but we wanted to weigh in on what we’d expect.

Perhaps most importantly, this dean will take the reins at one of the largest schools in Temple as the union for full-time faculty swells with the inclusion of adjunct instructors in its ranks. It’ll take iron resolve and a knack for negotiation to direct the departments as they deal with the change.

For our fellow students in CLA, we’d also hope for a dean who can gracefully articulate and emphasize how liberal arts education can help a career with tuition rising and a national media narrative that says a liberal arts education may not be “worth it.”

“We need to shape the role of liberal arts in the current academic climate, and this dean needs to be able to connect students’ majors to careers,” said Jodi Levine Laufgraben, the vice provost for academic affairs.

Students are here primarily to learn, but there’s depth in the college experience when the academic officials running the show are accessible. Fox Dean Moshe Porat does Twitter Q&As, SMC Dean David Boardman is just a tweet away and several other deans have been frequent sources for The Temple News. We  hope the chosen candidate is willing and ready to hear from us and the rest of the student body.

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