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UH System chancellor visits Victoria

ERICA RODRIGUEZ

By ERICA RODRIGUEZ
Sept. 28, 2010 at 4:28 a.m.

Renu Khator

Renu Khator

The University of Houston-Victoria's new freshmen class is evidence the UH system wants to create a destination university, the chancellor said Tuesday.

"We have 300 students here. That is very good evidence of support," Renu Khator, University of Houston-System chancellor, said. "We are all committed to making it a destination university."

Khator met with the 12-member presidential search committee for the first time Tuesday morning. The meeting was closed to the public.

"This was really just that first step of getting the committee together for the first time and introducing everyone to everyone else and really start this process," said William Staples, UH-Clear Lake president, and committee chairman.

Khator dodged questions about reinstating former UHV president Tim Hudson, an idea recommended last month by a Crossroads Commission on Education subcommittee.

"He is currently doing international activities that he's happy about, that I'm happy about," she said. "And we have a search committee currently going on for UH- Victoria, and we will find a person who is going to lead UH-Victoria into the future."

Staples said the committee reviewed a draft advertisement for the position that will run in the Chronicle of Higher Education and other publications.

The committee will then wait to hear from people who apply or are nominated for the position until December when it breaks for the holidays.

Committee members will focus their next meeting on qualities they are looking for in a new president.

"We will have a discussion of the challenges and opportunities that will be facing the next president," Staples said. The committee will also look at "preferred characteristics of the candidates."

The committee will narrow the candidate list and interview about 10 people. That group will be pared down to about four applicants who will also be interviewed by faculty and community members. Those applicants will then be handed over to Khator sometime next spring.

"Then the ball is really in her court as to what she does as to which candidate she would offer the job to," Staples said.

The prospective president would have to be approved by the UH Board of Regents, something Staples believes will happen in April.

"We would expect this to get to the Board of Regents next April," he said.

Khator also met with faculty and staff in a closed meeting Tuesday to quell fears and answer questions about the search for a new president.

"There's a lot of obstacles and challenges that we are encountering," said Juan Diego Martinez, a student services generalist, who heard Khator speak. "I think she just wanted to reassure us that we're doing a great job, that she supported us 100 percent."

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