SIUC's new Interim Chancellor says he wants to push the university forward - and doesn't think his temporary status will hinder that.
John Dunn says there are quite a few positions currently in an interim status - and he wants to try to work on filling them permanently. He says that's important to gaining traction on enrollment, retention, and other issues.
"So you want to be careful about it, thoughtful about it. I'm not hesitant to try and move forward on that, nor do I feel that there's anyone that's going to govern that in a way that says 'no, you can't do that.'"
Dunn says he's eager to meet with students - and wants to make sure they know they are his first priority. He also says good communication with faculty, staff, and community members is critical to the school's success.
While a lot of money and time is spent on recruitment, Dunn believes retention is critical to campus success. He says a big part of that is making sure students feel supported.
"Our goal and our responsibility is to help them do everything we can to be successful. Some of that is just helping lift the spirits a little bit, boy the support, but trying to make sure that they know it is about them."
When it comes to the campus reorganization, Dunn says he wants to assure students, faculty, and staff that while he's not averse to change, they need to be a part of the equation.
Dunn retired from Western Michigan University last year. He says his time there can help inform the direction SIUC should take, but he also wants to listen to ideas already working on the campus.
SIU Trustees approved Dunn's appointment Thursday. He'll report to Carbondale January first.