More than 60 people interested in being on senior vice chancellor search committee


Faculty Assembly members are encouraged to participate in upcoming elections for Senate Council seats and the search committee to fill the senior vice chancellor for health sciences and dean of the School of Medicine position.

During the March 6 Faculty Assembly, Senate Council President Chris Bonneau said more than 60 people are interested in serving on the search committee to replace Dr. Arthur Levine as senior vice chancellor for health sciences and dean of the School of Medicine. Levine plans to transition out of these roles.

"This level of enthusiasm is gratifying and speaks to the importance of the position, and also the rarity of which it becomes open," Bonneau said.

The search committee will be composed of faculty, staff and students. The Guidelines for Search Committees for Senior Academic Administrators requires that health sciences faculty make up 50 percent of the committee.

Senate Council will elect five faculty representatives (two faculty from health sciences, two faculty from the School of Medicine and one faculty member from the provost’s area schools).

Staff Council will select one staff representative. The Graduate and Professional Student Government and Student Government Board will each select one student representative. 

The chancellor will add members to the committee to ensure diverse and equitable participation by affected constituencies.

The election to decide who will represent Senate Council on the search committee will run from March 15 to 25. Faculty will only be able to choose candidates from their respective academic units.

Slates of candidates to serve on the committee were announced in a Read Green sent on March 1, Bonneau said. There also will be an opportunity for people to petition to get on the ballot.

Senate Council elections

Former Senate Council President Frank Wilson then gave an update from the standing Elections committee. According to Wilson, the committee is looking for candidates to fill several positions within the assembly, including officer roles.

In particular, Wilson said, there needs to be at least one nomination for a seat in social sciences, education, engineering, the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, social work, the University Library System and dental medicine. There also needs to be an additional candidate for the public health, pharmacy and nursing seats.

The first set of elections will run from April 3 to 18. This election will include positions to serve on Faculty Assembly. The second set of elections for the standing committees will begin on April 24 and end on May 6.

Wilson added that there are three openings on each standing committee. While there’s been interest in some of the openings, Wilson said, the committees that “need the most help” are Bylaws, Community Relations, Governmental Relations, Library and Plant Utilization and Planning.

Other topics discussed during the meeting:

  • Cynthia Golden, director of the University Center for Teaching and Learning, gave a presentation on Pitt’s learning management system transition from Blackboard to Canvas. Provost Ann Cudd has approved of the migration, which was previously discussed at length during the Senate Computing and Information Technology committee meeting on Feb. 14. Canvas is scheduled to roll out in an early release during fall 2019 into spring 2020 for select groups with a full releases scheduled for summer 2020.

  • On March 27, the spring plenary on “Free Speech in the Modern University” will be held in the Assembly Room of the William Pitt Union.

Donovan Harrell is a writer for the University Times. Reach him at or 412-383-9905.