Knodell has new plans

As chief academic officer of the University of Vermont, newly appointed Provost Jane Knodell said she is working closely with the rest of the staff to make progress for the University. “I enjoy administration; it’s where I can make a positive contribution,” Knodell said. She also said her main priority in her new position is to make all of the seven colleges inclusive. The University, including professors, deans and executive staff, is working to bring the schools together and to create one general education curriculum, she said. “This year’s big project is general education,” Knodell said. “We’re working with Faculty Senate, because they make the curriculum.” Since academics have become more rigorous, the University has been able to attract very strong students to expand the student body, she said. Another goal Knodell said she had was to form a better connection with the students and to hear their concerns. “I think it’s important to build a strong relationship between the University, the students and the city,” Knodell said. Student Government Association President Kofi Mensah said that Knodell has been more than willing to meet with student representatives from organizations such as SGA and Inter-Residence Association. “She has attended senate meetings to discuss issues such as the Transdisciplinary Research Initiative and has actually expressed interest in becoming more visible through the utilization of media clubs such as UVMtv,” Mensah said. When making decisions, she said her main concern is the students. “The test is, ‘Is this going to be good for our students?'” she said. “That’s the bottom line.”