Rogers: Campus Reorganization Implementation — July 1, 2022

Summer is in full swing, and campus is buzzing with orientation sessions for new Pirates and planning for the fall semester. I hope you are finding time to catch your breath and recharge in whatever way is meaningful to you.

As we begin a new academic year, I want to update you on the implementation of the initial set of recommendations of the Fiscal Sustainability Committee. During its June 14 meeting, the ECU Board of Trustees voted to endorse this reorganization. It’s important to remember the endorsement is the result of a two-year process by the Fiscal Sustainability Committee that was intentionally inclusive across the entire campus.

A Reorganization Proposal Committee held campus forums and stakeholder meetings as part of the process to integrate academic units and move the divisions of research, economic development, and engagement (REDE), and health sciences into the division of academic affairs. At my request, current Academic Council members were appointed to oversee the process to operationalize the divisional reorganization efforts.

The effort focused on two primary categories: reorganization considerations that are academic in nature and recommendations from a divisional finance and personnel administrative perspective.

Beginning today, all of ECU’s academic programs and functions will report to the provost, the university’s chief academic officer. This consolidation will streamline the university’s organizational structure and is consistent with national best practices. As such, Laupus Library, the College of Nursing, the College of Allied Health Sciences, and the School of Dental Medicine will move under Academic Affairs and the provost. The Brody School of Medicine dean reports directly to the chancellor.

Dr. Robin Coger begins as the university’s provost and senior vice chancellor for academic affairs on July 11.

Dr. Sharon Paynter has been named acting chief research and engagement officer beginning today. This allows the integration of REDE into Academic Affairs; she will report to the provost.

As we implement this new model, I want to again thank Dr. Michael Van Scott, who led the Fiscal Sustainability Committee and retired as vice chancellor of REDE on June 30, and Dr. Ron Mitchelson, former provost, former interim chancellor, and interim vice chancellor for the Division of Health Sciences who retired June 30 as well. And I also want to thank Dr. Grant Hayes, who has served as interim provost since 2019 and was formerly dean of the College of Education. The University of Central Florida recently announced that Dr. Hayes will be rejoining their faculty as dean of UCF’s College of Community Innovation and Education. I wish these three colleagues only the best in the coming years. Finally, I want to offer my thanks to the many governance partners and institutional stakeholders that helped navigate this complex process and implement the new structure.

This high level organizational chart should be helpful to see how the academic programs and functions will come together in this reorganized system.

Other recommendations from the July 2021 Fiscal Sustainability Committee remain under consideration, but these initial changes will better position our institution to advance the university’s mission of student success, regional transformation and public service.

— Chancellor Philip G. Rogers