Starting Out…

You’ve probably seen official announcement making the rounds; after a lengthy selection process, Mark Allen has asked me to be your new Vice Provost. I’m happy to accept, and am excited about the new challenges.

We’ve all been through a miserable year of budget cuts and uncertainties. I can’t promise that the state budget cuts are over… but we’ve done our best to align our costs with our projected state, Federal, and private-sector dollars. And, even though the hiring freeze is still in effect, Mark has promised to support a couple of additional positions in critical positions. I think we’re in the right formation to go forward.

Our strength is based on the people inside of EI2, and I want to hear from you. I’m a big believer in over-communicating, and I hope that you’ll reciprocate. I’ll be meeting with most or all of you — in Atlanta and elsewhere in the state — over the next few weeks. But I’m also hoping to leverage social media to initiate some interesting conversations even when we can’t be in the same room. To that effect, we’ll be translating some of EI2’s Web presence to a more flexible publishing/blogging platform in the near future. In the meantime, I’ve added a special category “EI2” to my personal blog, and I’ll use that temporarily. Feel free to view it on the Web at No password required. And comments are enabled; don’t be shy!

Finally, no note like this would be complete without thanking Wayne Hodges for his years of leadership in bringing EI2 to its current position of national prominence. I talk to counterparts at a lot of universities around the country, and all of them are jealous of what we have at EI2… and what we have is due to Wayne’s vision, creativity, and tenacity. I hope to do him proud as I take the reins. And, even though he’s trying to retire, I’ll be counting on him as a source of advice and counsel in the days to come!

Let me know what you’re thinking. I can’t do this alone.