Outside the College of Liberal Arts Office. Zach Donnenfield | Mustang News

Cal Poly is searching for a new dean for the College of Liberal Arts (CLA), and have narrowed candidates down to four finalists. These candidates have been invited to campus to host open forums for students during two weeks in May.  Each forum will be held from 11:10 a.m. to noon in the Performing Arts Center Phillips Hall (building 6, room 124).

May 8: Michelle M. Camacho

Camacho is a professor and faculty administrator at the University of San Diego in the Department of Sociology, with affiliate faculty roles in the Department of Ethnic Studies and Women’s and Gender Studies.

According to her biography on the CLA’s website, “Camacho brings 30 years of experience advocating for the creation of greater access to higher education, and regularly offers presentations nationwide on topics related to faculty inclusion, mentorship, and student success.”

This is seen in her study of inequities in higher education, specifically related to low numbers of women and minorities in the STEM fields.

May 10: Jon B. Gould

Gould is a professor in the School of Public Affairs at American University, and an affiliate professor at the Washington College of Law. Gould’s work focuses on civil rights and liberties, policy and legal change and expanding the reach of academic research. His published works address issues such as hate speech, sexual harassment and higher education. Gould’s leadership positions have been in a combination of academic, governmental and nonprofit organizations. He previously served as a Supreme Court Fellow, and a senior policy adviser for the Department of Justice during former President Barack Obama’s administration.

May 15:  Madhavi M. McCall

McCall is the current associate dean for the College of Arts and Letters at San Diego State University. McCall teaches classes about public law and the relationship between politics and society. She also served as chair for the Department of Political Science from 2010-2014. Her personal research has focused on voting behaviors of Supreme Court justices. This research is to examine how voting from the Supreme Court has led to policy changes.

May 17: Kate Drowne

Drowne serves as Associate Dean at the Missouri University of Science and Technology in the College of Arts, Science and Business where she oversees matters of curriculum and instruction. She has made issues of diversity a focus on campus, advocating and pursuing changes within faculty, student-body and curriculum modules. She also encourages student success with programs that facilitate professional opportunities for faculty and staff. One example of this is her First-Year Research Experience where she paired freshman students with faculty mentors for meaningful research projects.

According to a posting for the position, “The Dean of the College of Liberal Arts contributes to exemplifying Cal Poly’s most fundamental value — student success  — by providing vision, wisdom, and leadership.”

They will do this by sustaining CLA’s central role in Cal Poly’s polytechnic education, and build upon a culture of respect, diversity and inclusion. The person who fills this position is expected to begin their work July 1, 2018.

The new dean will take over the role from the college’s retiring dean, Doug Epperson. Epperson has fulfilled this position since 2012, working towards interdisciplinary collaboration and introducing four new minors that combine studies of science, technology and society.   

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