The first of four finalists looking to become the next president of the University of Iowa interviewed on-campus Monday.
Philip Furmanski, currently the Rutgers University Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, says one of his focuses is keeping the humanities strong in helping higher education strive for excellence. "The value of the humanities should be clear in the mess that we’ve made of the world because of our lack of understanding of cultures and languages across the continents," he says.
Furmanski admits the openness of the interview process, where candidates interview in a public forum, is unique but is conducted in a professional manner.
Furmanski says it would be a privilege and honor to become the U-of-I’s next president. "This is a university that is already extremely good but is anxious and has the basis for becoming a lot better. To be able to lead that to other areas of academic excellence is a very appealing thing," he says.
University of South Carolina Provost Mark Becker undergoes the interview process later today.
The other two candidates to be interviewed this week are Purdue University provost Dr. Sally Mason and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis chancellor Dr. Charles Bantz.