New LAS dean search committee names 5 finalists

Katelynn Mccollough

On Tuesday, five finalists were selected to continue with on-campus interviews for the new dean for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The finalists are Albert Boggess, Carolyn Cutrona, Chaden Djalali, Douglas Epperson and Beate Schmittmann.

As of fall 2010, there were 6,179 undergraduate majors, 22 academic departments and one professional school within the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

“I was looking for leadership skills and experience … as well as inspiration,” said Barbara Ching, a member of the 20-member search committee and the chairwoman of the Iowa State English department.

The search committee selected the five finalists through interviews in Des Moines on Saturday and Sunday. Since the position was first advertised, the committee received 37 nominations and 33 applications.

LAS is the largest college within Iowa State based off of its number of undergraduate students, graduate students, faculty and staff.

Ching does not know when the new dean will be selected and said that the selection is now “out of the search committee’s hands at this point.”

The finalists should be visiting campus within the next several weeks, where students may have the opportunity to ask them questions in public forums.

Currently, interim Dean David Oliver is overseeing the LAS college. Oliver took the position on July 1. He hopes students, if given the chance to participate in the public forums, will “show up and ask challenging questions about what they care about.”

The new dean may be selected before the end of this semester.

Finalists’ biographies

Albert Boggess is currently the head of the department of mathematics at Texas A&M University. He received his Ph.D. in mathematics from Rice University in 1979.

Carolyn Cutrona, the chairwoman of the department of psychology at Iowa State, began her research at Iowa State in 1992 and received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of California.

With a long list of research interests, Chaden Djalali head the department of physics and astronomy at the University of South Carolina. He received his Ph.D. at the Institut de Physique Nucleaire Orsay in Paris, France.

Douglas Epperson has been the dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Washington State University since February 2009. Epperson was the associate dean for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Iowa State from 2003 to 2009. He received his Ph.D. in psychology from Ohio State University.

Receiving her Ph.D. in physics from the University of Edinburgh, Beate Schmittmann has been the chairwoman of the physics department at Virginia Tech since 2006.