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Hanlon Announces Dean of Faculty Search; Tips Hand on Candidate Profile

President Hanlon has sent out a memo regarding the search for the new Dean of the Faculty who will replace the amiable but ineffective Mike Mastanduno. At the faculty meeting on Monday, Hanlon emphasized that the term “national search” meant that:

Both internal and external candidates will be given full consideration in this search. The sole objective would be to find the most qualified leader to fill the position of the Dean of Faculty. [Emphasis added]

However, Phil then described his own past experiences in hiring senior deans:

My history in dean searches is probably relevant here. In my day I have conducted nine dean searches, all of them national searches. In every case I insisted that the search process generate a deep, talented, diverse pool of internal and external candidates from which to choose. In five of those cases I hired an internal candidate; in four of them I hired an external candidate. Of the nine, only two of the deans I hired were white males; four of them were people of color. So, that sort of tells you what I am looking for in the search [Emphasis added]

One would have to assume that the remaining three deans that Phil has hired were white women.

What an astoundingly clear declaration. White males outnumber other groups in the academy and at Dartmouth by a long ways — 63% of the full professors at the College are white males:

Faculty Males 2016.jpg

Yet Phil is leaving no doubt where his preferences — or should we say his biases — lie. The phrase “chilling effect” springs to mind. Hanlon’s signaling words will certainly cause numerous qualified candidates to hesitate in expressing interest in the Deanship.

And what are we to make of a man who in the same breath says that he is looking for “the most qualified leader,” but then tells us with personal statistics that white males need not apply. Does Phil have nothing more to say about the qualities that he is looking for in his next Dean than to talk about identity politics?

Why doesn’t Phil tell the faculty that he is looking for a Dean who will tighten up tenure standards, or someone who will energetically attract top scholar/teachers to the College? Or a person who will seek to mold the curriculum so that students will not find themselves repeatedly closed out of oversubscribed courses or have an academically unfulfilling sophomore summer? It seems that Provost Carolynclusion Deversity is not the only senior Dartmouth administrator who can’t see a single priority beyond the fulfillment of racial quotas.

Addendum: A senior member of the faculty writes in:

You may be right about the motives behind Hanlon’s (Dever-driven?) explanation, but there may be other things at work. To my knowledge, we’ve never had a national search for this deanship. A dean from outside is possibly the end of everything that has made Dartmouth’s faculty unique. Our two leaders seem oblivious to the erasure of a Dartmouth that privileges both teaching and research.

Addendum: See Phil’s memo re: the search committee in the extended. Hint: there is nobody from the departments of Economics and Government on the committee.

Hanlon Dean of Faculty Search.jpg

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