Summer 2012 retrospective

East Gate

A new look for the east end of Osborn Drive is just one of the many changes that took place this summer on campus. Photo by Bob Elbert.

Summertime in the world of academia usually means life is less hectic. But while you were enjoying some peace and tranquility, many administrative and physical changes took place across campus. Here's a look back at some summer news.

Faculty and administrative changes

  • Former Engineering dean Jonathan Wickert became Iowa State's senior vice president and provost on July 30. President Steven Leath named him to the post in May following a national search. Former executive vice president and provost Elizabeth Hoffman remains an ISU professor of economics; she is on a faculty improvement leave for the 2012-13 year.
  • A 20-member search committee was named in July to seek a new Engineering dean. Mufit Akinc, professor of materials science and engineering and an associate scientist for the U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory, serves as the college's interim dean.
  • President Leath announced several administrative changes early this summer:
    • Vice presidents Warren Madden and Tom Hill were promoted to senior vice presidents. Madden is senior vice president for business and finance, and Hill is senior vice president for student affairs.
    • Tahira Hira is senior policy adviser to the president. She had been executive assistant to the president. In her new role, Hira will develop strategies to increase ISU's national prominence, manage rising enrollment and recruit top faculty.
    • Dave Biedenbach is assistant vice president for university financial planning and budgets, now located in the president's office. Budget planning had been based in the provost's office since 2006.
    • Sheryl Rippke, policy administrator, now reports to the office of university counsel instead of the president's office.  
  • Pamela Anthony became ISU's dean of students on Aug. 1. She previously served as assistant dean of students at Georgia State University, Atlanta.
  • Ralph Reynolds became Iowa State's inaugural director of the School of Education in the College of Human Sciences on July 1. The school serves students, alumni, faculty and staff who focus on Pre-K-20 teaching, learning and educational leadership.
  • Enrollment services staff member Darin Wohlgemuth was named interim director of admissions in July. He succeeds Marc Harding, who took a position with the University of Pittsburgh.
  • Laura Doering, an ISU staff member since 1996, became registrar on July 1. She had been the university's senior associate registrar and director of transfer relations.

Construction update

  • The Ames Intermodal Transportation Facility, located west of the Chamberlain Street intersection on Hayward Avenue, opened in July. CyRide owns the facility, and Iowa State's parking division is managing it. Regional bus and shuttle service began July 1. Parking permits are available for faculty, staff, students and the general public.
  • The Cyclone Sports Complex, located east of the Towers residence halls, is nearing completion and will see its first use at the end of August.
  • Mechanical and electrical finish work on the football training facility continues. The building should be ready for occupancy in October.
  • Various projects at Curtiss Hall will impact access to and throughout the building as the academic year commences. The Student Services Mall is complete with a dedication planned Aug. 28. Work has begun on Harl Commons, a student gathering area in the basement and on the ground floors of Curtiss. As a result, the east entrance is under construction.
  • Excavation and foundation work on the Agricultural Biosystems Engineering Complex next to the Biorenewables Research Laboratory on the west side of campus began this summer and will continue through fall. Look for increased truck traffic in the area. Parking lot 6 is closed and pedestrian walkways have been rerouted. The building should be finished by fall semester 2014.
  • Construction continues on Troxel Hall, located east of Horticulture Hall. Expect some traffic congestion around Farmhouse Lane while workers haul materials to the site. Completion is planned for next spring.
  • Osborn Drive received a facelift this summer, complete with a call box and turnoff exit for access to Wallace Road. Brick columns, landscaping and sidewalk improvements also were part of the project.