Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Will history repeat itself?

The University of Minnesota is searching for a new president. The 12-person advisory search committee is hard at work assembling a slate of finalists. In 2002, the Board of Regents tossed out the list of candidates prepared by the search committee and, after a series of closed meetings, chose to appoint interim president Robert Bruininks as the next president of the University of Minnesota. The University only released the names of the finalists after being sued. Will this year's search culminate in another inside job? Will the Regents continue to act like a junta that makes decisions behind closed doors, appointing insiders and perpetuating the cycle of incest? Most of our peer institutions appoint people from outside their institutions, and for good reason. An individual who has participated in leading an institution down a questionable path is unlikely to make radical changes. We need new blood that will bring a more inclusive and daring vision for our land grant institution, one that values intellectual inquiry and the public good over revenue generation and private profit.

For additional commentary on the presidential search see:

Recent Daily reporting on the search:

And finally, a Chronicle of Higher Ed piece on closed versus open searches (the full article is unavailable on the CHE website unless you are a subscriber but UofMN folks can click on this link if already logged in under x500):

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