Cal Poly Vice President of Student Affairs Cornel Morton will no longer be in his current position come January, the university announced Thursday. He will instead be working as Cal Poly’s first senior advisor to the president for outreach.
Morton, who has been the vice president of student affairs since 2002, will now be working to encourage more first-generation students to come to Cal Poly. The change will take effect Jan. 1.
Under his new job description, Morton’s old salary of $179,400 will be reduced by approximately $40,000. His salary of $140,004 will take effect on June 1, 2012.
A search will begin for the new vice president immediately, Cal Poly public affairs team leader Stacia Momburg said.
“It does take a bit of time to prepare advertising for the opening,” she said. “I expect a new vice president could be in place by the beginning of next school year.”
In the meantime, current University Housing director Preston Allen will serve as interim vice president. Allen will continue in his University Housing position while Cal Poly searches for a new vice president.
Momburg said outreach and diversity initiatives are near the top of Cal Poly President Jeffrey Armstrong’s priorities. The time is right for action on that agenda, Momburg said, due to Morton’s “strong background in increasing diversity.”
“President Armstrong tries to move quickly regarding initiatives, and this seemed like the right time to move forward on this,” Momburg said.
The new adviser position Morton will take is necessary due to the increasing complexity in global markets, Momburg said. Armstrong has been told in multiple private conversations that diversity is Cal Poly’s “Achilles’ heel,” she said.
It is unclear if the new position’s creation was a collaborative effort between Morton and Armstrong, or if Armstrong ordered Morton’s reassignment to the position. Neither Morton nor Armstrong were available for comment Friday.