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State System's Board of Governors finalizes search criteria for next chancellor

Seeks ‘visionary’ leader to guide System Redesign

Contact: Kenn Marshall, (717) 720-4054 or (717) 329-0809
Harrisburg – Clearly outlining its vision for the next chief executive to lead the state’s 14 public universities, the Board of Governors of Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education has finalized the search criteria it will use to recruit “a visionary chancellor for the university system of choice for more than 100,000 students.”
The document, released today, calls for the chancellor to provide “strong leadership to position the System to advance in academics, student success and service, and to provide extraordinary educational opportunities at an exceptional value.”
“We are excited about our momentum of change, which started last year with our comprehensive system review,” said Board Chairwoman Cynthia D. Shapira. “We are now undertaking a System Redesign, and our next chancellor will play a vital role in continuing that process—shaping, guiding and advancing that effort well into the future.”
The Board has established three priorities to guide the redesign: Ensuring student success; leveraging the universities’ strengths; and transforming the System’s governance structure. The Board also affirmed its commitment “to ensuring the long-term sustainability of all 14 institutions within the System so that each may continue to serve students, its region and the Commonwealth.”
“Helping our students succeed—that they graduate in a timely manner with a path for their future—is our highest priority,” Ms. Shapira said. “The next chancellor will work alongside our talented faculty and university leaders to ensure our students receive the highest quality and most relevant education possible.”
The Board is seeking a chancellor with “unquestioned integrity, high energy, and demonstrated leadership and administrative abilities who can shape, articulate, lead and implement the purposeful, engaging, and dynamic mission” of the State System.
The search for the System’s next chancellor will continue through the spring, with the expectation that a new chief executive officer would be on board by the beginning of the 2018-19 academic year.
The Board developed the search criteria based on input from hundreds of students, faculty, staff, alumni and other stakeholders who participated in meetings and conference calls or provided input through an online survey made available to the public.
Ms. Shapira and Board Vice Chair Harold C. Shields are leading the chancellor search committee. Wheless Partners—one of the nation's leading executive search consultant and human capital advisor firms—is assisting with the search process and candidate recruitment. The firm has led successful executive searches around the country, including presidential and chancellor searches for public and private universities and systems nationally.
To follow the progress of the search, go to:
Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education is the largest provider of higher education in the Commonwealth, enrolling more than 100,000 degree-seeking students and thousands more in certificate and other career-development programs. Collectively, the 14 universities that comprise the State System offer more than 2,300 degree and certificate programs in more than 530 academic areas. Nearly 520,000 State System university alumni live in Pennsylvania.
The State System universities are Bloomsburg, California, Cheyney, Clarion, East Stroudsburg, Edinboro, Indiana, Kutztown, Lock Haven, Mansfield, Millersville, Shippensburg, Slippery Rock and West Chester Universities of Pennsylvania. The universities also operate branch campuses in Oil City (Clarion), Freeport and Punxsutawney (IUP), and Clearfield (Lock Haven), and offer classes and programs at several regional centers, including the Dixon University Center in Harrisburg and in Center City in Philadelphia.