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UT may miss opportunities by promoting provost from within

On August 15, 2012

This week, President Lloyd Jacobs announced his recommendation that the Board of Trustees approve the appointment of Scott Scarborough, senior vice president and executive director of the University of Toledo Medical Center, to the post of Main Campus Provost.

Though Scarborough has served in a variety of positions at Toledo, it’s questionable if he was the best choice out of the set of candidates. Scarborough, an integral part of a previously

broken system which brought about the new system of schools on top of colleges, was chosen over a pool of three outside candidates.

According to Jacobs, the University of Toledo hired a consulting firm to search for quality candidates outside of Toledo. The new system was, in part, meant to bring in a big name provost to our university. Instead, UT chose an administrator from in-house.

There were choices who may have been more qualified than Scarborough to be provost. This included three other candidates for the provost position, all of whom were from other universities.

The first candidate, Carlo Montemagno, dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Cincinnati, helped improve the quality of the students attending UC and served as a professor of bioengineering.

The second candidate, Janine Janosky, vice president at Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron, has experience in community building at the University of Pittsburgh where she also served as a faculty member. She has held a number of

research directorships and was the vice provost for research at Central Michigan University.

The third candidate, Antonio Moreira, vice provost for

academic affairs at the University of Maryland in Baltimore County, spoke about his 20 years of tenure at Maryland where he served as a professor, department chair, dean, and associate provost, growing a diverse research institution. He has held research positions at institutions across the globe.

While, according to Scarborough, he has experience in the classroom, almost all of his recent experience is fiscal and not academic. He does not have the experience as a researcher, academic, and academic administrator that any of the other candidates had. It is impossible not to ask the question—why was Scarborough, an in-house candidate, chosen over these other qualified candidates whom were meant to be attracted by UT’s restructuring?

Though Scarborough may be well-connected within the university and familiar with how it runs as a whole, we as a university may be missing out on a grand opportunity to experience a whole new and refined method of administration from a qualified candidate. All that’s left is to hope that appointing Scarborough the top university educator was a well-educated, not poorly made choice.

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