University Seeks to Expand Faculty in Upcoming Years

In addition to a growing student body, the University of Vermont is expanding its faculty. Plans to bring in collegiate teachers follow no immediate formula, rather the dean of each of UVM’s colleges nominates a certain professor for a position depending on that dean’s own vision of growth for his department. That nomination is then reviewed by the office of the provost, who either approves or denies the nomination. Growth seldom occurs on such a large scale at an already sizeable university, making the next few years a pivotal time in UVM’s evolution. Each step forward will be carefully delegated and exact so that expansion will occur to the merit of the university. In order to understand this projected growth, The Cynic contacted the dean of each school and asked where expansion would occur in each of their respective fields.

Rachel Johnson, dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS), had this to say about expansion within her school: “Animal Science is our largest undergraduate department. They have a new chair, Dr. Thomas McFadden, who will continue to build their excellent undergraduate programs in general animal science, pre-veterinary science, equine science and dairy production.”

“A new faculty member, Dr. Lynn Gregory, was hired to strengthen our new major in Public Communication housed in the Department of Community Development and Applied Economics. A new faculty member, Dr. Amy Trubek, was hired to strengthen our curriculum around sustainable food systems in the department of Nutrition and Food Sciences.”

“The Department of Plant and Soil Sciences has a new chair, Dr. Deborah Neher. Dr. Neher is working to strengthen their programs in Sustainable Landscape Horticulture and Ecological Agriculture.”

“We have three new cross-college programs that we do in collaboration with the College of Arts and Sciences and the Rubenstein School. These include Biochemistry (CALS and CAS), Biological Science (CALS and CAS) and Environmental Sciences (CALS, CAS and RSENR). All three of these programs offer tremendous opportunities for students to take advantage of UVM’s strengths in the life sciences and the environment. If you have any specific questions about these programs please let me know or you can contact the department chairs directly.” -Dean Johnson

Elanor Miller, Dean of the Colleges of Arts and Sciences gave her perspective of prospective growth “There are three things that I think will influence the direction of the planned expansion of the faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences over the next several years, all of which are consistent with the vision of President Fogel for UVM’s future. There will be an expansion of graduate programs, especially interdisciplinary ones at the doctoral level. A good example is the doctorate in neuroscience that is already in the works. There will be expansion to meet both critical areas of student demand. The arts across the board will be one area of focus here. Finally, there will be a concerted effort to secure the universities prominence in those areas where it already has a national reputation for excellence, particularly health and the environment.

You may notice that I have not been too specific; that’s because all of this growth is dependent on the wisdom of the current faculty and must be mindful of the fact that at its core the College’s mission is to deliver the best possible undergraduate education in theliberal arts”

Dean Rambur of Nursing and Health Sciences added that “The College of Nursing and Health Sciences has several areas targeted for growth. The first is a redesign of the Department of Physical Therapy to the Department of Rehabilitation and Movement Sciences, with the addition of an undergraduate major in Exercise Science and a minor in Health, Nutrition, and Fitness. As part of this plan, the Athletic Training major would also join this department.

The second major growth plan is in the Department of Medical Laboratory and Radiation Sciences. This department currently has three majors: Radiation Therapy, Nuclear Medicine Technology, and Medical Laboratory Science. Our plan is to retain these majors while also organizing existing areas of study into new concentrations. These concentrations include Public Health Laboratory Science, Molecular Diagnostics, Radiation Safety, and Radiography.

“In the Department of Nursing we have recently added a new Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner track to the existing master’s degree in Nursing. We hope to add a Clinical Systems Management track next semester and also have plans for an entry-level master’s degree. This program enables individuals with a baccalaureate degree in a non-nursing field obtain their RN license and master’s specialty in three years.”

Faculty expansion will not be immediate however students can expect diverse additions to each college’s already excellent repertoire of classes.