|Welcome to the SVM Family|
This message is the first of many you'll receive from me in the coming years as I work to increase the level of communication and open exchange between the Dean and staff, faculty, and students of the SVM. Thank you, to Kalen Nichols, who during my interview suggested that the Dean communicate directly to everyone on a monthly basis similar to what Jeanette Roberts does in the School of Pharmacy. This monthly message is meant as a direct mechanism for me to regularly communicate with you; highlighting the major issues the school is facing, recent accomplishments by our faculty, staff or students, and any other information I think you would be interested in hearing about from me—to steal a good idea, here goes...
First, thank you to Jon McAnulty who so capably filled the Interim Dean role for the School of Veterinary Medicine this summer. I've very much enjoyed working with Jon over the last month as I prepared for this new role.
I want to welcome everyone to the UW School of Veterinary Medicine family. More than several of you who saw my talk when I interviewed for the Dean's position have asked when I will host the first SVM get together... the first welcome to our SVM family... Red Solo Cup and all... on Friday, September 28, from 4:30-7:00 p.m. Please RSVP so we can adequately plan for the number who will attend. Only casual attire is allowed. On an ongoing basis, we will have a get-together as faculty, staff, and students once a month in the overhang during the more weather-friendly months. We'll determine a better environment for the winter months soon.
As a member of the SVM family, I want to tell you that it is my highest priority to do everything in my power to help you succeed. That doesn't mean that I'm here to acquiesce to your every request, but it does mean that if there is anything I can do to help you achieve your professional dreams or aspirations, I will. That's the real reason I took this job—to help as many people as I can to fulfill their (professional) destinies and dreams. My door will always (almost) be open so feel free to stop in anytime you would like, appointment or not. I'd love to hear from you. Welcome to the school family and my home (away from home)!
The following are some of the more important upcoming items I would like you to know about:
- A critical challenge going forward will be to seek ways to increase our efficiencies in our overall financial processes. To this end, the Dean's office administrative structure will be reorganized to create a new Chief Financial Officer type of position with responsibilities for all financial operations of the SVM, including the VMTH. In order to create such a position, it is necessary to reorganize the duties of the Associate Dean for Administration position. The search for a CFO will likely initiate in September/October with the goal of filling the position before the end of the year. This person will be asked to immediately get a handle on the finances of the entire SVM including an audit of our finances.
- Jo Beth Dudley will continue her role in grant award processing and pre-award support, devoting full time to those activities once the CFO is hired. Until then, she will also manage the school's finances.
- Central services will be overseen by the newly expanded position of Associate Dean for Advancement and Administration. Kristi Thorson assumes the Interim Associate Dean for Advancement and Administration position effective September 1, 2012. Search for the new Associate Dean for Advancement and Administration position will begin immediately with the goal of filling the permanent position in October/November.
- I am excited to welcome Nik Hawkins to the school as our new director of communications and public relations as of September 10, 2012. Nik comes to us from WISCAPE in the School of Education where he is the Assistant Director of Communications. Please stop by and introduce yourself to Nik – he will be in room 2160 (Lori's old office).
- I am very pleased to announce that during Chris Olsen's term as Interim Vice Provost for the UW-Madison, Lynn Maki has accepted the position of Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, effective September 17, 2012. Lynn brings extensive experience with our students, our educational program, campus-wide academic affairs issues, and operations of the Office of Academic Affairs. The school has made a commitment to Chris that will enable him to come back into the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs position for up to two years, with notification of his intentions to me no later than June 2014.
- The Department of Medical Sciences has elected Sheila McGuirk as Interim Chair of the department effective September 1, 2012. Sheila and Jon McAnulty, as Chairs of Medical Sciences and Surgical Sciences, respectively, have been asked to assemble a committee to evaluate the administrative structure of both departments and determine if the two departments would prefer to merge or not. In addition, they been asked to evaluate whether the departments would benefit from the creation of vice-Chair type positions focused on mentoring/promotion of junior faculty, clinical research, clinical service and teaching, etc... The deadline for their report to me is October 15, 2012. Depending on their recommendations, if necessary, the department will undertake another preference ballot for the Chair and/or vice-Chair positions, likely with a start date toward the end of 2012 or early 2013.
- I will charge a large animal hospital committee in coordination with Ruthanne Chun to evaluate and make recommendations with regard to how best to structure the LA hospital to optimize large animal teaching, clinical service, caseload, and clinical research in a fashion that is financially viable for the hospital. Simon Peek will chair the committee. Deadline for a preliminary report from this committee will be the end of 2012.
- I am highly supportive of the Selectives Curriculum Model proposed by the Curriculum Review Taskforce that was put on hold in March 2012 pending selection of a new SVM Dean. I have charged Chris Olsen and Lynn Maki to proceed immediately to finalize the proposal and submit it to the Curriculum Committee for consideration, followed by an all–SVM faculty vote in November, 2012. We also are exploring the possibility of creating a position of "External Clinical Education Coordinator" to manage relevant aspects of the selectives curriculum and interactions with private practice partners regarding all of the external clinical education that we provide to our students.
- A Clinical Education Taskforce, chaired by Dr. Robb Hardie and charged by Associate Deans Chun and Olsen in July 2012 was set up to examine our clinical educational program in the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital. I look forward to receiving a report and recommendations from them on October 31, 2012.
- I am both happy and sad to announce our 30th (happy) and final (sad) Dog Jog, with the theme this year "2 miles, 12 pitstops, 30 years." Kudos and many thanks to Linda Sullivan who has played such an instrumental role in establishing and organizing this event along with the school's Companion Animal Club. The Dog Jog will be held at 10 a.m. on September 16, 2012 with the start in Parking Lot 60 at the intersection of Walnut Street and University Bay Drive.
- Our 4th Annual Tailgate for our alumni and referring veterinarians is scheduled for September 22, 2012, when the Badgers take on UTEP (I had to ask to learn that UTEP is the University of Texas El Paso). We hope you will join us and help us connect with our alumni and referring veterinarians.
- An important upgrade for our external and internal websites is in the works. Ruthanne Chun, Rhonda Davis, and Kristi Thorson have been appointed to a committee focused on the redesign for the SVM and UW Veterinary Care sites. Both sites will be up and fully functional before January 1, 2013. They will be working with many of you to develop content for the new sites. I thank you in advance for helping us with this important project.
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