Provost search still on despite COVID-19 changes

Isabella Gentile, Editor-in-Chief

When former provost Andy Workman left RWU last June, the university set a goal to appoint a new provost before the 2020-2021 academic year began. COVID-19 has recently changed much of campus’ normal operations, but it has not put a stop to the university’s national search.

In an all-university email on March 23, President Miaoulis said the Provost Search Committee has chosen four candidates who are advancing to the finalist stage. These four were selected following virtual Zoom interviews with nine candidates held over the past week. The interviews had to be conducted virtually due to travel restrictions caused by COVID-19. 

Miaoulis said the finalist interviews will also be conducted via Zoom, as the committee is adhering to Gov. Raimondo’s current mandate limiting gatherings to 10 people or fewer. These interviews will be held this week on March 26 and March 27 and next week on March 31 and April 3. 

Each interview day will include an open forum for the campus community, a faculty forum and meetings with the Cabinet, provost’s direct reports, school deans and Miaoulis. The open forum for campus with each candidate will include a detailed introduction and welcome from the candidate, which will be repeated multiple times so that more people have interaction opportunities. The chat function on Zoom will be used for Q&A with the candidates.

The search is open to the RWU community, but Miaoulis said it is closed to the public. Those who choose to participate in the forum thereby agree to maintain confidentiality with all the information they receive about each candidate.

The committee’s goal is to complete the four interviews and provide assessments of each candidate no later than April 6.