Administration changes provide hope moving forward
By Lauren Beeman
The Quincy University community started the new school year by welcoming several new staff members in different departments around campus.
Phil Conover began serving as interim president of the university in May 2017 after former President Robert Gervasi resigned. Since then, eight other administrative positions have been filled in various offices around campus.
Teresa Reed- Vice President of Academic Affairs
Mark Strieker- Chief Financial Officer
Tom Oliver- Vice-President of Enrollment Management
Mike McCabe- Director of IT Services
Brendan McCrudden-Student Success Coach
Lauren Mehaffy- Admissions
“It was really scary at first to have all of these staff changes,” Associate Director of Admissions Brittany Ellerman said. “But now I really think we are really going in the right direction.”
Ellerman believes Conover was instrumental in making the existing administration feel comfortable with all the change in staff.
“The people that have come on board, just like our new counselors, have breathed new life into us, and their enthusiasm is contagious,” Ellerman said.
The Admissions Department welcomed three new counselors to its team: Lauren Mehaffy, Feven Girmay, and Paige Owsley.
Equipped with a strong, fresh team, Ellerman hopes to grow enrollment, and believes the new Vice-President of Enrollment Management Tom Oliver will make that growth possible.
Oliver shares Ellerman’s growth goal, and plans to broaden the university’s reach around the country in order to make that goal possible. He started in the position on Sept. 1, and replaced former enrollment manager, Soumitra Ghosh.
“My long-term goals are to just to continue to expand this institution’s reach and enhance the quality of the incoming classes so that that can translate into a very vibrant and intellectually rich academic experience at the university,” Oliver said.
According to Ellerman, the selection committee narrowed the finalists down to three applicants and decided Oliver was the best fit for the position based on his experience.
“He really grew up through the ranks…he really has a lot of years under his belt and understands every aspect of enrollment management,” Ellerman said.
Admissions and Enrollment are not the only two departments on campus welcoming new faces. The Business Office, IT Services, and Academic Affairs experienced staff changes as well.
The Student Success Center hired Brendan McCrudden as a Success Coach. McCrudden replaced former coach, Jannah Zubaidi.
“It’s worked pretty seamlessly because I interned here last semester so I knew my way around…it was a pretty good transition overall. I am excited for the opportunity,” McCrudden said.
Student Engagement is also preparing to hire a new staff member within the next month as Director of Residence Life Crystal Sutter formally resigned at the start of the fall semester.
“As of last week, we put together an official committee that will have facets from all over the university being represented. We are trying to take a lot of student involvement in this hiring process,” McCrudden said.
Dean of Students Christine Tracy explained that the university is currently searching for Sutter’s replacement, and plans to have a new director by Sutter’s final day on October 4, 2017.
Student involvement will play a large part in the hiring processes for the new director as well as the new president.
Student Government Vice-President Mary Argana serves on the hiring committee searching for a presidential candidate to replace Conover, a process that is predicted to take around five to seven months. However, Argana has hope moving forward.
“While I am sad we have lost some really good people, I feel like it’s creating an opportunity for even bigger growth. Everything happens for a reason,” Argana said.