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Breaking: Wright State ‘Couldn’t come to terms’ with suitable candidate for new college

Wright State | Photo by Soham Parikh | The Wright State Guardian


Interim Provost Oliver H. Evans announced the leadership structure for the university’s new College of Health, Education, and Human Services.

In a letter to the campus community, he announced that the leaders of the college’s departments and schools would report to the interim provost, effective July 1, 2021.

The university’s Board of Trustees approved the establishment of the new college during its meeting on Feb. 19. It is the first new college at Wright State in over three decades, according to the university.

The university held public interviews for three founding dean finalists from April 26 until May 5.

According to the university’s website, the three dean finalists were Lynda Ransdell, Joseph Keferl, and John Henning.

The university wished to have the dean in place by July 1.

In an email to The Wright State Guardian, Evans explained that the university was unable to come to terms with their chosen candidate.

“Our search for a dean of this college involved three final candidates and the university did find a suitable and qualified candidate it had confidence in but was not able to come to terms with them,” Evans wrote. “The university is committed to reopening the search in the fall.”

Evans continued, promising that he would work closely with the leadership staff to prepare the college during the search.

“The university is moving forward with the opening of the college and has enthusiastic and qualified professionals who will help us do so,” Evans wrote. “We’ve been very fortunate in that the people who have played a leadership role in developing the concept of the college have agreed to continue in leadership roles during this coming year.”

Evans says he is committed to working with the faculty and leadership to develop a sense of community and believes the new college represents an exciting opportunity for the university.

The college is organized into four new schools:

  • Miami Valley School of Nursing, Kinesiology and Health Sciences
  • School of Social Work and Human Services
  • School of Education and Leadership
  • School of Professional Psychology

Deborah Ulrich, the current interim dean of the College of Nursing and Health, will continue as dean until July 31. Ann Stalter will become chair of the School of Nursing, Kinesiology and Health Sciences effective August 1, and Sherry Farra will become assistant chair. Ulrich will then return to a faculty role.

Carol Patitu will serve as chair of the School of Education and Leadership. Colleen Saxen will become assistant chair.

LaTrelle Jackson will continue as interim dean of the School of Professional Psychology. Dr. Michelle Schultz will also remain associate dean.

The Department of Social Work will move from the College of Liberal Arts into the new college, and Elizabeth Talbot will continue to serve as chair. Leslie Neyland-Brown will continue as chair of the Department of Human Services.

Drew Pringle will continue as chair during the Department of Kinesiology and Health for Fall Semester 2021. During that time, the interim provost will work with the chair and faculty to decide leadership following his retirement.

The leadership of each area will remain until June 30, 2022.


Dylan Collison

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