Student Representatives of the Presidential Search Committee Marissa de La Viez and Josiah Meekins, both class of 2019, conducted a listening session during the evening of Sunday, December 9th. The session was open to any student who wanted to share their opinion about criteria the hiring firm should use when considering candidates for the position. GSG Co-Presidents Samuel Anderson and Noah Block, both class of 2019, facilitated the conversation.
One key theme that manifested from the opinions shared was a need for a president with a relationship to Baltimore. Students emphasized expecting their future president to establish a solid relationship with the city during their tenure. A suggestion was also made to encourage members of the community specifically to apply for the position.
In respect to the background of a future president, students expressed a desire to look at candidates with backgrounds outside of business. Students also indicated interest in welcoming candidates with expertise outside of Higher Education.
An encompassing theme to many of the opinions raised was a named desire for the future President of Goucher College to be an individual who will bring a sense of stability to campus. Students suggested that this will take the form of clear, authentic communication from the President both to the student body as a whole and through interpersonal relationships developed with students on campus. Students also indicated a need for a president devoted to the liberal arts with an interest in actively working to narrow the divide between student-athletes and non-athletes, a trend that students indicated had grown noticeably over their time on campus.
One student suggested that the president should be “visibly and emotionally present.”
To encourage students to envision more of what they hope from a new president, Block asked the group to imagine Goucher’s community in ten years. Students emphasized a desire to see the expansion of CREI and the hiring of faculty members of color, with an ongoing commitment being a quirky liberal arts school invested in integrative learning. Students also articulated a desire for the campus community to actively engage in difficult conversations with a focus on creating sustainable, student-driven change.
In addition to sharing the issues raised during the listening session to the rest of the Committee, de La Viez and Meekins indicated their intention to create and regularly update an online timeline checklist for the public to track the hiring process.