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Search for health, human sciences dean suspended temporarily

The search for the next dean of Western Carolina University’s College of Health and Human Sciences is in a temporary holding pattern, Acting Provost Carol Burton announced to faculty and staff in the college Monday, March 18.

WCU is conducting a national search to fill the dean’s position currently held by Douglas Keskula, who announced in April 2018 his intention to return to a faculty position in the Department of Physical Therapy within the college, effective with the 2019 fall semester.The search committee is being chaired by George Brown, dean of WCU’s Belcher College of Fine and Performing Arts.

The committee brought three finalists to campus for visits and public forums presentations in January and February.

“The search committee has done an admirable job of reviewing and interviewing candidates for the position,” Burton said. “However, based on the collective feedback we have received, our analysis of the options and further review of candidates in the pool, I am suspending the search temporarily.”

Burton said she plans to work with leadership within the college and across the university to determine next steps and set a new timeline as quickly as possible.

“The College of Health and Human Sciences is strong, and I want to build on Dean Keskula’s strong leadership by securing the best leader we can find to follow him,” she said. “In the meantime, I extend my gratitude to the search committee members for their efforts as well as those who took time to participate in the campus visits and provide feedback.”

Keskula has served as dean of the College of Health and Human Sciences since July 2013.

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