Cabrini continued its search for the vice president and provost position on Thursday, March 11, with Chatham College’s dean, Dr. Anne Skleder.
Skleder began her visit with students by explaining why she chose to interview for the position, citing the new Justice Matters curriculum, the faith-based mission, the students and faculty and the endless possibilities, among other things.
“I believe it is important to have a strong core curriculum that everyone experiences. I want to challenge how Justice Matters unfolds on the campus,” Skleder said.
After explaining why she chose Cabrini, Skleder opened up the floor for students to express what they would like to see changed. The most popular topics discussed were the issues of retention, the honors program, the overall cost and food.
“A lot of students wonder where our money is going exactly. I know I came here as an honors student, and that has kept me here,” Katie Juliana, junior biology major, said.
Skleder listened to each student’s concerns, making note of each of them, and offering advice from her own personal experiences.
“It’s important to look at how students are counseled when they have a problem. Talking to students and understanding their perspectives is key. When you listen well, theme emerge that can make change,” Skleder said.
Student feedback wasn’t totally negative. When Skleder asked why students stayed, despite their criticisms, there were positive responses.
“I liked being a face, being a story, not just a number,” Danielle DiBartolo, sophomore psychology, social work and sociology major, said.
After the student question and answer session, Sklede thanked the focus group, and reflected on the discussion.
“When it all comes down to it, it’s about making great graduates,” she said.