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University of Missouri officials host open forum to discuss qualifications for new provost

UPDATE 6:00 p.m.: The University of Missouri provost is a critical position and officials highlighted its importance at an open forum Monday morning.

“The provost can, I think, set an agenda,” said Sandy Davidson, a journalism professor and member of the provost search committee. “Another term we are hearing is help set the excitement, the enthusiasm and help develop opportunities and encourage people to engage in so many different ways.”

Marshall Stewart, search committee co-chair and vice chancellor for extension and engagement, said the provost is the chief academic officer who has an eye on campus.

“You make sure there’s great teaching, grant research and great engagement and that our faculty are supported in that,” said Stewart. “If you have that going, a lot of other things get a lot easier. They really need to be a champion on those fronts.”

About a dozen students and faculty members came together Monday morning and had their first conversation about what they want in the new provost.

The conversation hit on experience and leadership qualities that the provost should have. For instance, many talked about the need for someone with a background in interdisciplinary studies.

“We really need to understand it,” said Joi Moore, committee co-chair and professor/director for the school of information science & learning technologies. “We have the opportunity with all the different types of colleges and schools to provide that.”

Students and faculty highlighted a person who could stay connected with teaching research and extension service, as well as someone who could bring diverse groups to the table while also seeing multiple sides of the issue.

Another desired trait: someone who could communication well and understands the value of people.

“We heard several times, transparency,” said Davidson. “We want the community here to know what we’re doing and give us feedback. I think that’s so important.”

The committee hopes to have a provost chosen by May. The conversation is far from over and anyone can share their opinion on who or what they’d like to see in the provost at the link here.

ORIGINAL STORY: University of Missouri officials are hosting an open forum on Monday morning to see what the campus community needs out of a provost.

The forum is scheduled to be held in the Great Room in the Reynolds Alumni Center from 10 to 11:30 a.m.

Officials hope to talk about characteristics and qualifications the next provost needs.

ABC17 previously reported that Jim Spain was named the temporary provost in December.

ABC17 crews will be at the meeting to learn more about the provost search.

Stay with this story for the latest information.

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