Florida A&M University has yet to see any serious negative effects from the lack of a registrar and admissions director, said Vice President of Student Affairs Roland Gaines.
The University has been without a permanent registrar director for close to a month, while the admissions office has been without a permanent director since April 2007.
Gaines said he is not making it a priority to fill the position of admissions director until the office receives a good amount of capable applicants.
“We’re just trying to get applications, and we haven’t gotten a nice applicant pool yet,” Gaines said. “We’re not appointing a committee to hire anybody until we have a nice pool.”
He said the admissions office has had to divide its responsibilities and wait to appoint a permanent director.
“The registrar position is being advertised, but we’ve pulled the admissions director,” Gaines said. “We’re not sure how we want the office to operate right now because I’ve divided responsibilities.”
Danielle Kennedy-Lamar, the associate vice president of enrollment management, said the remaining officials and interim directors in the registrar and admissions offices maintain the office functions.
“As long as there is a plan in place and someone there to ensure that the plan is carried out, the absence of one person shouldn’t affect the University’s viability,” Kennedy-Lamar said.
Kennedy-Lamar said steps are being taken to ensure the positions are filled in a timely manner.
“We are advertising for positions with normal sources, but in addition we will be advertising with national sources to get the best possible candidates,” she said.
Although Kennedy-Lamar is not alarmed by the office vacancies, Maurice S. Holder, a member of the faculty senate and FAMU’s board of trustees, said filling these positions should be a priority for the University.
“The faculty would like to see all units in management positions filled as quickly as possible,” Holder said.
Holder said filling the vacant registrar position will help keep FAMU in order.
“We have to make sure that registrar is carefully coordinated so that we have no semblance of disorder,” he said. “With the (SACS) investigation taking place within the University, we need to make sure that registrar is on top of that.”
Holder’s biggest concern is that University records are kept in order so there are no problems complying with state regulations.
“Misappropriation or mis-activity in any department is a concern for anybody,” he said. “We have to be sure that our records are kept in a manner that is impeccable so that we are in compliance with what’s expected of us by the board of trustees and the state.”
Until the director position is filled permanently, Gaines said he, along with Kennedy-Lamar, is personally keeping up with the affairs of the office.
“I recruit students myself, and I’m the vice president,” Gaines said. “I have 30 years of experience recruiting, and I have a staff who we train and they know what they’re doing.”
Gaines said the interim director is maintaining the Registrar’s Office until a permanent position is filled.
“We have an interim director in registrar, who is getting support from my office,” Gaines said. “Students can’t tell you they have been affected negatively by having the interim registrar.”
Holder agreed with Gaines and said the interim registrar director is doing a good job.
“The interim seems to be doing a good job and shouldn’t be overlooked for the position,” Holder said. ” Careful consideration must be given before we select anybody. The operation of the University isn’t complete until we fill these positions.”
Although Holder wants these positions filled as soon as possible, he said he has faith in the University.
“I’m confident that in the near future we will get these positions filled,” Holder said. “I’m positive that the individuals temporarily there will hold us in compliance until we can get people to permanently fill that spot.”