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UMaine system chancellor calls for a review of the system's job search policies

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Linda Coan O'Kresik
/
Bangor Daily News/file

University of Maine System Chancellor Dannel Malloy is calling for a review of the system's job search policies after facing criticism over a lack of transparency during the search for a new president at the University of Maine at Augusta.

On Wednesday, UMA's faculty senate voted no confidence in Malloy, and called for a new presidential search at the school. That came after it was revealed that during the search process for a new president, Malloy was made aware of a no-confidence vote against candidate Michael Laliberte by the SUNY Delhi College Senate last year.

But Malloy did not ensure that the UMA search committee was alerted to that fact. Laliberte was ultimately chosen for the position.

Now, Malloy is calling for a review of all active university job searches, and is also asking officials to review the system's job search policies and recommend any changes to ensure that all "relevant information" is made available.

James Cook, a UMA sociology professor, said that while changing the presidential search process is important, he and other faculty still feel that their trust has been broken. Cook said that the system needs to make more fundamental changes, including the reconsideration of past decisions that put more authority into the chancellor's office.

"We need to put the control of our seven universities back into our seven universities," Cook said.

Cook said some UMA faculty have floated the idea of bringing in an independent investigator to determine the facts of the presidential search at the school.

In a statement on Thursday, the university system's Board of Trustees said that it is looking at steps to "improve the integrity of UMS presidential searches, as well as the confidence of our university communities in them."

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