Florida A&M’s search committee for the director of retention met Friday in the School of Business and Industry to interview prospective candidates for the position.
According to Maurice Edington, QEP director and Associate Professor of Chemistry, the university began its search when former director of retention, William Hudson, was as the vice president for student affairs.
Edington said the committee is looking for a director who is a visionary and someone who can relate to students, faculty and staff.
“You want to have someone who has a knowledge of best practices for retaining students and developing programs of academic support and social support programs to help students matriculate towards graduation,” said Edington.
Edington, who serves as the chair of the search committee, wants to see an improvement in the graduation rate and said that filling this position means there will be someone whose task is to help students succeed.
“We’ll have someone whose job it is everyday to work to promote programs that will help students succeed at the university and help particularly at risk and someone who will be in charge of implementing innovative strategies for helping students to succeed academically and socially,” said Edington.
Cheree Wiltsher, director of student services for the School of Allied Health Sciences and member of the search committee, said the position is vital to the university.
“I would say it’s very important for the university,” said Wiltsher. “Any school wants to have great retention rates. The students that you take in as freshmen, you want them to continue through and to reach the goal of getting their degree.”
According to Edington, the committee will select from the candidates who were interviewed and submit the names to the University Provost for further review.