By Jacquelyn Zeman – Managing/News Editor
A search committee at Grand Rapids Community College has selected three finalists for their provost search. The finalists include: Bill Pink, the vice president of academic affairs at Oklahoma State University, Tony Hawkins, instructional dean of humanities at Montgomery College in Maryland, and in house candidate, Laurie Chesley who is currently GRCC’s dean of the School of Arts and Sciences.
AGB Search was hired this spring to assist GRCC with filling the position, which opened in May when Gilda Gely became Aquinas College’s provost.
Jennifer Batten, co-chair of the provost search team, said she is impressed by the final candidates.
“I think we have three excellent, candidates,” Batten said. “I am looking forward to the community getting to meet them…there were a number of excellent candidates.”
Pink said he is honored to be a finalist for the position. “My interactions with President Ender, the faculty, and the staff have been amazing thus far, and the quality of these individuals speak highly to the excellence of the college,” Pink said. “I have enjoyed the process of learning how my experiences align with GRCC’s initiatives and direction…I wish the campus the best of luck.”
Hawkins said he looks forward to visiting GRCC for the next part of the search.
“I am happy to be selected as a finalist,” Hawkins said. “I look forward to coming back to meet with the students, faculty and staff of Grand Rapids Community College.”
Chesley said she has enjoyed her time at GRCC, as she has spent 10 years at GRCC, a little over four of those years as the dean of School of Arts and Sciences.
“I have never been at an institution more committed to students than GRCC,” Chesley said. “So those are the reasons I applied, and I am very honored and humbled to be in the finalist group with such an impressive group of candidates.”
GRCC’s provost-executive vice president for academic and student affairs reports directly to the president, and serves as the chief academic officer. Their main responsibilities are guiding all aspects of teaching and learning in support of student success. Patti Trepkowski has been filling in as the interim provost.
The candidates will be on campus the follow days for open forums, campus tours and to meet with GRCC groups.
Dec. 2 – Hawkins
Dec. 4 – Chesley
Dec. 5 – Pink