Wickert unveils provost's office realignment plan

Senior vice president and provost Jonathan Wickert has announced a plan to better align responsibilities with objectives in the academic division, include more faculty members in its leadership and maintain a culture of efficiency and effectiveness.

In a recent memo, Wickert said the plan reflects recent assessments of the office by his leadership team, recommendations from a Faculty Senate review, input from various campus groups and individuals, and benchmarking of similar offices around the country.

"Our staff does a great job, and I have been very impressed with both the quality and volume of their work," he said. "These changes will enable us to be more data-driven in making decisions and in assessing how effective policies actually are in meeting their stated goals."

Position changes

Four vacant positions have been eliminated. Two others will be eliminated by the end of the year, due to a retirement and changes in workload. Three newly defined positions are:

  • Program manager for budget and planning, who will assist with capital planning and budget development for the division of academic affairs
  • Academic data analyst, who will help inform decision making and improve the quality of academic programs
  • Business analyst, who will lead policy and academic process effectiveness efforts, including analysis of workflow, business processes and faculty performance and satisfaction                    

Wickert said recruitment is under way for the program manager, and he hopes to fill all three positions by the start of the 2013-14 academic year. The positions align with the division's budget and planning process, including the three-year operating plans, Wickert said in the memo.

Part-time faculty fellows

Wickert will provide leadership opportunities and management experience to several part-time faculty fellows. The fellows will work in the provost's office on faculty-related issues, such as orientation and mentoring, diversity and inclusion, and department chair management resources and training. A call for applications will be announced soon.

Staffing changes

  • Karen Zunkel will assume full-time responsibility for student outcomes assessment, beginning March 1. She previously had selected responsibilities with Iowa State's undergraduate programs, both for the academic division and the Board of Regents, while also serving as manager of the Program for Women in Science and Engineering (PWSE). An external search will be conducted to fill the PWSE post.
  • John Schuh, distinguished professor emeritus in the School of Education, will direct the Emerging Leaders Academy. Sponsored by the provost's office, the academy provides a series of monthly sessions to develop leadership skills of selected faculty and professional and scientific staff.

Title changes

The following title changes are intended to more accurately reflect staff duties:

  • Dawn Bratsch-Prince to associate provost for faculty
  • Ellen Rasmussen to associate vice president for academic planning and resources

Reporting changes

Beginning July 1:

  • The Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching will provide more faculty career development programming and support, including mentoring for new faculty; and integrate faculty professional development more broadly across the division. CELT will report to Bratsch-Prince.
  • Institutional Research will increase its business analytics support for budget development, multiyear planning, divisional key performance indicators and use of Academic Analytics. The unit will report to Rasmussen.
  • The University Lectures program will report to communications director Rob Schweers.