Dear Faculty and Staff Colleagues in Arts & Sciences:
Shortly it will be announced that I have accepted a position as President of Elizabethtown College, in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania, and will be resigning my position as Dean as of June 30, 2011. Here I'd like to share with you, my faculty and staff colleagues in Arts & Sciences, some personal thoughts on my time as Dean and as amember of this very special community.
First let me say that it has been an honor to serve as your Dean for the last seven years. In that time we have seen three College presidents, two provosts, and various challenges and successes. I will always be grateful for the opportunity to work with such an extraordinarily gifted group of faculty and staff. Your dedication to our students is truly remarkable, as is your commitment to the tradition of shared governance, within both Arts & Sciences and the College as a whole. I also thank you for the support and friendship you have extended to my family over the years.
Foremost among my goals as dean has been to give our faculty members what you need to do your best work, in both teaching and research. Among our successes in that regard I would include maintaining faculty hires through a time of difficult budgets, increasing the number and kinds of opportunities for faculty to engage students in mentored research, major steps forward in replacing and renovating our academic facilities, and strategic moves to strengthen our internationalization, civic engagement, graduate studies, and interdisciplinary studies. On the administrative side we have made great strides in the areas of communications and development. Despite the current challenges we face, I am optimistic for the future of Arts & Sciences at the College.
The impressive group of faculty leaders who make William and Mary such a strong institution is too large to list, but I am particularly appreciative of those who have served as department chairs and program directors, as co-chairs of the Dean's Advisory Council, and as members of a wide array of committees such as Academic Status, Assessment, COGS, Degrees, EPC, FAC, RPT, and Study Abroad. I have also very much enjoyed working with staff members in department and program offices, Academic Advising, Arts & Sciences Development, and the Dean's Office. To all of you, faculty and staff, I will miss your professionalism and good cheer very much.
Provost Halleran will shortly announce the appointment of an Interim Dean of Arts & Sciences who will serve for the academic year 2011-12 while a national search is taking place. Over the next semester, the contact deans, the rest of the staff in the Dean's Office, and I will work hard to ensure a smooth transition to my successor as Interim Dean. I look forward to working with you for one additional semester on the many on-going projects we have underway.
Best wishes for 2011, and many thanks for all you do to make this College a very special place.
Carl J. Strikwerda
Dean, Arts & Sciences