The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

College has yet to determine filled positions

In the four weeks since President Judy Walters announced limited hiring for vacant faculty positions, a committee has yet to meet and decide which retiring professors to replace next year.

The so-called Box 2a committee includes Susan Lamb, vice president of instruction; Laurie Lema, Faculty Senate president; United Faculty Vice President Glenn Appell; and Donna Floyd, interim vice president of student services.

Although scheduled for May 11, the meeting was delayed until next week so members could finish collecting data from program reviews, Lamb said.

Six of 12 professors would not be replaced as a permanent cost-saving measure, Walters said on April 16.

Of the remaining six, one would be given to a dean who has return rights to the classroom and two were already filled as a result of earlier decisions, she said. But hiring for the three remaining openings will not take place until the fall, with the actual start date to be in January 2011.  
Lamb said the delay is to accommodate a thorough hiring process that involves at least six weeks of advertising for the positions.

“We can do a comprehensive hiring process, and get a good pool of applicants,” she said.

Floyd said an additional reason is cost. If hiring was to be done in the summer, the college would have to pay faculty to serve on the paper screening and interview committees, she said.

But Appell, a music professor and union vice president, took issue with both reasons.

“We [the United Faculty] are frustrated that we didn’t manage to fill these positions in a timely way,” he said. “We really think those positions are critical.”

He also downplayed the cost issue.

“We are disappointed the college isn’t able to spend the little bit of money to pay people [during the summer],” Appell said.

Two departments – journalism and electronics – are losing their only full-time faculty members this month with the retirements of Jean Dickinson and Tom Chatagnier, respectively.

“I cannot emphasize enough the burden this places on others when a department loses its only full-time person and chair,” Dickinson said, pointing to the cumulative program review, course updates, teacher evaluations and other tasks due in the fall.

“All of those responsibilities will either fall by the wayside or go to another department, like English,” she said. “Not only does English lack journalism expertise, it also has its own long list of tasks to complete.”

Some managers said they also worry about the delay in hiring.

“It’s frustrating, because there’s great need,” said Ellen Kruse, interim dean of English and business. “It’s a problem for the college [because] we need the full-time faculty.”

Dennis Smith, dean of biological and health sciences, blamed the delay on lack of communication between faculty and senior administrators.

“The decisions of import are made at the top level,” he said. “There should have been early, open, transparent conversation.”

Contact Annie Sciacca at [email protected]

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About the Contributor
Annie Sciacca, Editor-in-chief
Co-editor-in-chief, fall 2010.

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College has yet to determine filled positions