Green, Murphy Apply For Dean Of Students Job

Chad Green, West Quad North Cluster Dean and Director of Community Service, and Paul Murphy, Instructor in Math and Director of Summer Session, are the two candidates for Dean of Students and Residential Life, according to two faculty members. The candidates’ names have not yet been officially announced, but an email to faculty is expected today, according to Rebecca Sykes, Associate Head of School. Green and Murphy both submitted a letter of interest and a resume to Sykes. The application process will also include faculty and student submissions and a series of interviews. Sykes will make the final decision in late January. Sykes said that although the administration is unsure how students will be involved, students will have a chance to share their thoughts. Students interviewed by The Phillipian had a range of opinions on how involved students should be in the selection process. William Eastman ’08 said that he is skeptical of student involvement. “Students shouldn’t be involved at all. It’s the administration’s decision. It’s an unpopular decision no matter who has it.” He continued, “It’s a tough job, you’ve got to be a disciplinarian. No matter who you are or how nice you are, the students are going to view you unfavorably, so the students shouldn’t have a say in it at all.” Andrew Townson ’10 is in favor of student participation. “I think students should be involved because the Dean of Students controls a lot of what the students do. Students should have an opinion because they have a sense of who can do the job and what they want to get done.” “However, I don’t think students should have too much involvement – maybe towards the end when they have narrowed the candidates down to two, just for consideration,” he continued. Thomas Armstrong ’11 had some reservations about student involvement. “I don’t think all of the students should be involved. I think that the idea should be spread through student council and through dorm reps and class reps. Then these students should get together and talk with Mrs. Sykes about the person they want.” Bijan Torabi ’10 said he wants “a Dean of Students who is approachable, someone students can relate to and are not afraid to talk to.” Lucas McMahon ’08 said, “I think that it is important that the next Dean of Students is someone students really respect, and therefore they should have some input on who it should be, or at least weight through the nominations.” Molly Shoemaker ’08 said she feels if students are involved, they each deserve equal voices in the process. “I think it would be problematic to have students involved, although I am in favor of it. Unless you get something like a survey, then you can’t get all of the students to participate […] If students have to be involved, I think it should be every single student.” Associate Dean of Faculty Susan McCaslin said that she believes asking students is “something to seriously consider.” She said, “Do I think students should have an opportunity to weigh in [their opinions]? Sure!” McCaslin suggested finding a representative body to speak on behalf of the student body. Travis Conley, Chair of the Chinese Department, said that he believes asking students could help in the process. He said that students should be polled to see what qualities would be attractive in a new Dean of Students. According to Sykes, faculty will be asked to submit their thoughts and opinions on the candidates and may even “endorse” an applicant in the coming weeks. McCaslin said that asking the faculty for input and endorsements is part of the “typical process for any position that has school-wide responsibility.” Provided she knows the candidates as individuals, McCaslin plans to submit her thoughts. After faculty submission, Sykes, members of the Senior Administrative Council, Cluster Deans and members of the House Counselor Committee will interview the candidates. According to the Phillips Academy’s website, Green has been on the Andover faculty since 1995 when he joined as a Teaching Fellow in Community Service. Green was then appointed Interim Director of Community Service. Since 1997, Green has served as the Director of Community Service. He became a West Quad North Cluster Dean in the fall of 2004. Murphy graduated from Phillips Academy in 1984. In 1988 Murphy returned to Phillips Academy as a Teaching Fellow in Mathematics. The following year he became an Instructor. Murphy served as the Flagstaff Cluster Dean from 1999 to 2005 and was then appointed Director of Summer Session.