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Chancellor candidate to interview Wednesday on campus

Pulliam+Hall+can+be+seen+Jan.+30%2C+2017%2C+on+the+university%27s+Carbondale+campus.+%28Jacob+Wiegand+%7C+%40jawiegandphoto%29
Pulliam Hall can be seen Jan. 30, 2017, on the university's Carbondale campus. (Jacob Wiegand | @jawiegandphoto)

Pulliam Hall can be seen Jan. 30, 2017, on the university's Carbondale campus. (Jacob Wiegand | @jawiegandphoto)

Pulliam Hall can be seen Jan. 30, 2017, on the university's Carbondale campus. (Jacob Wiegand | @jawiegandphoto)

By Daily Egyptian staff

The second of three people contending to become the university’s next permanent chancellor will be on campus Wednesday to answer questions from students, faculty and staff.

George Hynd, who was named president of Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan, in 2014, will interview on campus at 8:45 a.m. Wednesday in Guyon Auditorium. The candidate will then answer questions at a student-led forum from 5 to 6 p.m. the same day in the Student Services Building room 160/170.

The events are open to the public.

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At Oakland, Hynd is seeking and allocating resources to support research, expanding efforts to create an increasingly diverse faculty and establishing “fiscal and budgetary systems that are comprehensive and transparent,” according to his curriculum vitae. The state-funded university consists of more than 20,000 students.

Hynd’s contract with Oakland University ends Aug. 14. He makes $400,000 a year as president of the Michigan school.

The administrator has a background in clinical child neuropsychology and has written, co-authored and edited 11 books.

From 2010 to 2014, Hynd worked as provost and executive vice president of academic affairs at the College of Charleston. He managed an academic affairs budget of nearly $90 million, according to an online biography. He was also a professor in the university’s department of psychology.

Before then, he worked for two years as senior vice provost and dean of the Mary Lou Fulton College of Education at Arizona State University. There, he managed an annual budget of $20 million.

From 2003 to 2007, he worked as dean of the College of Education at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. Before that, he worked from 1979 to 2003 in various roles at the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia, working his way to becoming the university’s associate dean of research and external affairs.

Hynd has worked on numerous journals and served as editor-in-chief of the Journal of Learning Disabilities from 1995 to 1999.

He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in psychology from Pepperdine University in California and a doctoral degree in education from the University of Northern Colorado.

In an interview with the Detroit Free Press in 2014, Hynd said he is not a micromanager.

“I trust people,” he told the newspaper after being appointed president of Oakland. “I’m surrounded by people who are experts. I’m trusting they are doing their jobs.”

In 2016, Hynd helped kick off a new $78 million university housing project that will consist of 750 beds. During the same month the projected started, the university raised tuition by nearly 4 percent, the Oakland Press reported.

In fall of 2015, Hynd was criticized by Oakland’s professor’s union for hiring a former Fiat Chrysler Automobiles safety chief to become one of the university’s highest-paid employees, according to the Oakland Press. Officials there told the newspaper that the university did not hold a search to seek other candidates for the newly created position, which paid $325,000 a year.

Hynd is the only candidate who has not attended or previously worked for SIU.

SIUC interim Chancellor Brad Colwell and Carl Pinkert, vice president for research and economic development at the University of Alabama, are also vying for the spot. Pinkert earned his master’s degree in animal science from SIU in 1977.

Jeff Elwell, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, dropped out of the running last week after being offered the president position at Eastern New Mexico University.

The search for a permanent chancellor comes during a financially difficult time for the state and university.

For nearly two years, Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democrats who control the state Legislature, including House Speaker Michael Madigan, have not been able to pass a state spending plan. This has left public institutions reeling.

The next chancellor will likely be tasked with making large reductions. In late March, SIU President Randy Dunn announced his plan for the Carbondale campus to cut at least $30 million in spending from its $450 million budget.

Check dailyegyptian.com for full coverage of Hynd’s forums on Wednesday.

The Daily Egyptian’s news desk can be reached at [email protected] or 618-536-3397.

To stay up to date with all your southern Illinois news, follow the Daily Egyptian on Facebook and Twitter.

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The student news site of Southern Illinois University