University reorganizing to align with “strong provost” model

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Tribune file photo.

Tribune file photo.

Interim President the Rev. Robert A. Wild announced Monday that the university is reorganizing to better align with the “strong provost” structure of governance.

In the new structure, the Office of Student Affairs, led by Vice President Chris Miller, will begin reporting to Interim Provost Margaret Callahan. This allows her to take advantage of new synergies involving the university life and student experience responsibilities of the Provost’s Office, according to a University News Brief.

“This close alignment of student and academic affairs is common at many universities and will help us work in a highly coordinated way to ensure our students a transformative Marquette educational experience,” Wild said in an news brief.

In the “strong provost” model, the provost becomes the second-ranking member of the university administration, thus eliminating the vacant executive vice president position. The responsibilities of the Office of the Executive Vice President will be absorbed by other administrative areas.

Callahan said different institutions define and set up the strong provost model slightly differently, but the main point of having the provost as the chief academic officer and the second-ranking member of university leadership after the president remains the same.

“Given the increasingly complex nature of operating a university and the amount of time a president has to spend on external relations – namely fundraising, lobbying and board relations – the strong provost model gives the Office of the Provost greater control over internal university operations, with the purpose of advancing academic excellence and the student experience,” Callahan said.

Other offices directly under the provost now include the deans of all colleges and the library, the dean of admissions and enrollment planning, the vice president of student affairs, the vice provost for research and the dean of the graduate school, and the vice provost for undergraduate programs and teaching.

The provost, vice president for financing; planning; advancement; athletics; general counsel; and mission and ministry will report directly to Wild.

The vice presidents for marketing and communications; public affairs; and administration will report to Tom Ganey, vice president of planning and university architect. Vice president of human resources will report to Cindy Bauer, vice president and general counsel.

Wild first announced the university would be moving to the “strong provost” structure of governance Wednesday in a letter to faculty and staff.

Shared governance, the previous model originally introduced by Wild in 2007, will continue to be a priority in the strong provost model.

“As we adopt this new approach, we will do so in the framework of our strategic plan to ensure we continue to complete in tomorrow’s competitive higher education marketplace,” Wild said. “We must assess, evaluate and transform university operations to increase our efficiencies and effectiveness, a priority highlighted in our strategic plan. I am confident that this reorganization will move us in the direction and is the most suitable leadership structure to move Marquette forward as we prepare for a new president.”

The new organizational structure can be found on the university leadership web page.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that offices directly under the provost included the dean of administration and enrollment planning, dean of nursing, vice president for student affairs and vice provost for undergraduate programs and teaching. The correct offices directly under the provost are listed in this article.

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