Leadership at FAMU



Photo credit: Lauren Coleman

Florida A&M University (FAMU) has had its fair share of changing its leadership around campus this year. In the summer of 2017, three deans have been replaced, College of Education, College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, and School of Journalism and Graphic Communications.

This semester’s returning students at a lost because they were not informed on the matter. This did not give time for students to do anything to help their deans fight for their positions. It was already in the motions for those deans to leave their positions because there were already interims in line. Students had to get adjusted to the new leaders in their perspective schools.

The College of Education Interim Dean, Dr. Patricia Green-Powell has served as the Dean once before. Prior to Dr. Green-Powell becoming Interim Dean, Dr. Traki L. Taylor was announced to become the colleges’ new dean in November of 2015.  Dr. Taylor served from January 2016 to July 2017, only giving her a year and a half as dean.

Dr. Seth Y. Ablordeppey currently serves as the Dean of the College of Pharmacy after the firing of Michael Thompson. Thompson served as the dean for five years. Before and after his firing, there is reporting of Thompson and faculty having problems.

Even after the termination of his contract, faculty felt that they should have been made aware of the situation beforehand. As dean, Dr. Ablordeppey has to make sure that the school continues to receive its accreditation  According to his faculty, he has made sure his he’s done an excellent job with the task.

This fall semester has put both students and faculty through many trials and errors. The School of Journalism and Graphic Communications is transforming the facility and direction that the school is heading. Lady Dr. Dhyana Ziegler, interim Dean, replaces Dr. Ann W. Kimbrough. Dr.  Ziegler is currently ensuring that the School of Journalism is better than its standard for accreditation in 2018.

Fall 2017 was moving for the entirety of FAMU’ body as  the university was granted with its 12 president, Dr. Larry Robinson.

Before the announcement about Dr. Robinson was made, there were other positions being spoken about, mainly in the athletics department.

Photo credit: Lauren Coleman

Milton Overton announced himself leaving as Athletics Director for the same position at Kennesaw State. Head Coach of the men’s football team, Alex Wood, resigned after the Florida Blue Florida Classic. Coach Alex Wood met with the team and Coach Pata to announce that he was resigning Monday after the Classic.

Interim Head Coach, Edwin Pata was contacted by the AD when he was informed by Wood, “I was initially saddened hearing that Coach Wood was resigning but anxious to make sure to keep the program going forward.”

He wants to make sure that his players continue to stay strong academically and help them grow as men.

Graduating senior and interdisciplinary studies major, Chaviss Murphy was not surprise that Coach Wood resigned.

“It wasn’t shocking at all, I knew after the Classic, the way the alumni feel and the way people spoke,” said Murphy. It was a disappointing day to see Coach Wood leave his position.

After the athletics department had its toll, a little over a week later Student Government Association President, Justin Bruno resigned and his Vice President, Devin Harrison, took his place. Percy H Henry III, Secretary of Communications, served alongside Bruno and did not agree with the decision made, but felt that he made the best decision for the student body of FAMU.

“As he outlined in his letter, sometimes we have to realize that in order to move forward, sometimes forward does not involve us,” said Henry.

From replacing three deans, SGA president and head coach stepping down, and the athletic director switching schools, it is clear that FAMU needs people who are strong and have the willingness to perform and ensure that they are here for their students.