May 16, 2012

Leahy to lead faculty assembly

Associate Professor and Chair of Mathematics Andrew Leahy, newly elected Chair Pro Tem of the faculty, said he feels comfortable stepping into the position, one that he has held before.

The role of the Chair Pro Tem, according to Leahy, is more prominent in the behind-the-scenes aspects of faculty meetings.

“Setting the agenda, while it sounds like relatively innocuous task can actually be a relatively important position because you get to structure what sorts of things are going to be talked about to begin with,” Leahy said.

The role of the position during meetings is one of mediation and knowledge of the regulations.

“As far as the running of the meetings, I think the most important part is to be an impartial person as far as giving people the right to have their say, and also being the person among a perhaps handful of people who are familiar enough with the rules, Roberts Rules of Orders, to make sure that things flow smoothly,” Leahy said.

Leahy described the position as one that is best assumed without definite goals.

“Well, I look at this position as someone who doesn’t necessarily have goals apart from the certain structure; I mean, it’s really a person to give an open and equal forum for everyone on the faculty to advance their goals,” he said.

Dean of the College Larry Breitborde and President Teresa Amott will play significant roles in determining agenda items.

“I think as far as overall goals, my hope is to sit down with the Dean and the President because it really is, if you read the faculty regulations, their task as well,” Leahy said.

The goal will then be to determine and prioritize agenda items and “come to some sort of agreement for what the agenda items should be both on the individual basis and perhaps what sorts of things we should be discussing long term,” Leahy said.

Leahy is not interested in influencing the agenda items but looks to play a role in preserving the efficiency of meetings by upholding the structure.

“I don’t want to put my personal imprint, like, I think this is a great agenda item for the faculty. I see it more as influencing the structure of the meetings,” Leahy said.

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