The search is on for the 11th Midwestern State University President.
MSU has sought input from faculty, students, and those in the community. MSU will gain input from a series of four open forum town hall meetings.
Three of the open forums were scheduled Monday, September 15. Faculty members met with the hired firm Academic Search. Academic Search representatives were searching for what kind of qualifications, and concerns the professors and staff had for the incoming president.
Many staff members were very aggressive in taking a stand when it came to qualifications they were looking for. The Academic Search firm said that MSU needs to be open-minded when it comes to a presidential applicant.
The firm said they wanted to look for a non-traditional candidate. Something they said only 30 percent of presidents around the United States currently have.
A big topic that had many staff members concerned were questions about the type of academic background that would be required for the position. The staff wanted experienced educators, with terminal degrees. While representatives from the Academic Search said senior leadership was essential.
Many of us are more interested in an academic background with less leadership experience," said Psychology Professor Michael Vandehey. "When I hear senior leadership that tells me they haven't been in a classroom for 30 years. I would rather grow with a president than have someone that already knows how to, get here then put their stamp on us."
Another open forum offered September 15 gave students the opportunity to address those same topics. MSU students found very similar concerns and qualifications they want to see in the new president.
"I think it's important to have a good educational background," said MSU student Phillip Mundine. "They need an academic background to be able to know what they're talking about."
Students also say they want a president they can interact with. They also hope the new president is open to change, and heavily involved in student activities.
The open forums are just a small step in a larger process of the presidential search. The Academic Search firm will take all the input and consider it when putting together a final applicant qualification list.
Ultimately the school's presidential hopeful will come from applications selected by a 12 member search committee. The committee was formed by Midwestern State University's Board of Regents, the search firm will only serve has an additional aid who will also provided good potential candidates to the search committee.
The committee will see every application, and will narrow down a search to around 10 presidential hopefuls. They will then send that list to the search firm where the firm will do heavy research into each individual.
The search firm will provide information to the committee about each applicant, and then the committee will decide on finalists. Representatives from the search firm said they are here to catch any red flag that might be missed. They said like many staff members they will search for an individual that will have a passion for the MSU mission.
They Academic Search firm said a rough estimate of an appointment date of the new president will be April of 2015.
If you couldn't make it to one of the open forums, an online survey will also allow you to contribute your input. Click the link: