Faculty Senators speculated at their Feb. 17 meeting about the College of Science and Engineering’s future. However, the interim dean said there is no substance to the rumors.
At the meeting, senators mentioned the possibility of the college splitting into two after the new engineering building is completed and a new dean is hired.
The science and engineering department is to receive its own building which will be titled Bruce and Gloria Ingram Hall. The College of Science and Engineering is currently located in the Roy F. Mitte building.
The college is in the midst of hiring a new dean. This is the second time Robert Habingreither has filled the interim dean position. The opened position has been nationally advertised, and there have been several rounds of interviews to find the right candidate.
Although Habingreither said he can get the job done, he is not interested in the position long term. With the new building and the hiring of a new dean underway, there have been rumors pertaining to the college.
Habingreither said the idea of even considering splitting the colleges is of such a high magnitude the discussion would need to be initiated among administration. Until that happens, he does not see the need to discuss rumors.
“Well, that decision would come from the administration,” Habingreither said. “As far as I am concerned—and we’re all concerned—that’s something that may be out there on the horizon, but there is no substance to it right now. I’m in the business of stating facts.”
The dean-hiring process is extensive and a decision that carries a lot of weight, he said.
“Have you ever been around cows?” Habingreither said. “
Habingreither continued by saying that while he is not on the search committee, per his request, the candidates being interviewed all have impressive credentials. However, the committee is searching for someone who is a “perfect” match for the future of Texas State.
“We look for the candidate whose persuasions and credentials match the best with where the president and the provost want this university to go—particularly the College of Science and Engineering,” Habingreither said. “And we are very focused on research and fundraising.”
The committee has narrowed the search down to three candidates for the dean position. Habingreither said he took the interim position and promised to serve as dean until someone permanent is hired. He plans to stay through the transition process.
“My wife kind of wants me to retire. We bought a ski boat,” Habingreither said. “The problem is, I really like what I am doing. I have loved my employment here at this institution. I feel like I’ve done well for them, and they have done well for me. I truly love the people here, and for me to be able to look back on my career and say that I’ve truly enjoyed it, it is a privilege.”