September 28, 2020
I wanted to let you know that due to the current demands of the pandemic, I have decided to delay kicking off the search for a permanent College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) dean until next fall. Luckily, CAS’s current leadership – Dean Bruce Blonigen and Dean of Faculty Karen Ford – have agreed to continue in their positions through the 2021-22 academic year.
Bruce and Karen had committed to serve in their respective positions through the end of the upcoming academic year. But because of their valuable leadership, steady guidance during the pandemic, and thoughtful direction to supporting faculty, staff, and students in CAS, I asked them to continue in their positions for an additional year.
CAS is our institution’s largest college, making up roughly 60 percent of our university’s students and faculty, and has achieved much over the past year under their leadership. Bruce, Karen, and their team successfully launched Tykeson Hall this past year with campus partners, raised more than $13 million in major gifts, and helped carve pathways for the new Black Studies and Latinx Studies minors. They have continued their strong stewardship over academic, budget, and hiring matters within CAS, which is especially important in a moment like this. I am also appreciative that they have initiated conversations to consider shared administrative services in CAS, as well as a new school of languages and global studies.
The last seven months have not been easy, but with Bruce and Karen I know that CAS and its faculty will remain on solid footing, and be poised to be even stronger in the future. Please join me in thanking them for their continued commitment and service to CAS and the University of Oregon.
Provost and Senior Vice President