April 06, 2004

Finalists in CASA dean's search to make campus visits

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Members of the Southern Illinois University Carbondale campus community can meet with the four finalists for dean of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts over the next several weeks.

The finalists are Dr. Thomas M. Hassell, professor in the College of Health Professions, Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff;Charles A. Pinder, chairman of the Department of Technology, Northern Kentucky University in Highland Heights, Ky.; Paul D. Sarvela, interim dean of SIUC's College of Applied Sciences and Arts; and Mary R. Sumner, associate dean of the School of Business at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

The four finalists will each spend two days interviewing on campus, and participate in candidate presentations and forums open to the campus community, beginning this week. Hassell's visit is Thursday and Friday, April 8 and 9; Pinder visits the campus Monday and Tuesday, April 12 and 13; Sumner visits Monday and Tuesday. April 19 and 20, and Sarvela's visit is Monday and Tuesday, April 26 and 27.

Hassell's presentation and open forums are Friday, April 9, in the Hiram H. Lesar Law Building Auditorium. He will discuss "Grantsmanship: The Science and Art of Garnering Extramural Funding," at 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. One-hour open forums are at 11 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Provost and Vice Chancellor John M. Dunn is pleased with the finalists and the work of the 18-member search committee.

"We thought we had a very strong applicant pool and we are very pleased with the four finalists," said Dunn. "These are individuals with strong academic and professional credentials who have made significant contributions to their professions and universities.

"We are looking forward to welcoming them to our campus, to allow them to learn more about the college and University, and to provide the University community the opportunity to interact with the candidates."

In July 2000, he became professor and chair in the College of Health Professions at Northern Arizona University, where his mandate was to expand the dental hygiene program, create satellite NAU programs in rural Arizona communities and on the Navajo, Hopi and Yavapai-Apache Reservations, and enhance distance learning education from the college's on-campus programs. To fund those efforts, he raised $1.8 million in 20 months from private sources. He also has raised about $800,000 for scholarship funds.Hassell cites his extensive background in academic administration, higher education, clinical and laboratory research, professional practice and fund-raising successes both for support of academic programs and for research endeavors.

Hassell has been an assistant professor of periodontics in the School of Dentistry, and a principal investigator at the Regional Dental Research Institute, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, N.C., and associate professor of anatomy and periodontics, at the University of Maryland Dental School in Baltimore. From 1987 to 1996, Hassell was professor of oral biology and chair of the Department of Periodontology at the University of Florida, Gainesville, Fla. From 1996 to 2000, Hassell was director of clinical research and later principal scientist at Optiva Corp., in Snoqualmie, Wash., and affiliate professor of periodontics at the University of Washington School of Dentistry in Seattle.

Hassell earned his bachelor's degree in biology and pre-dentistry from Indiana University in 1966, and a doctor of dental surgery degree from the Indiana University School of Dentistry in 1969. Hassell then became chief of the Bioelectronics Research Laboratory at the University of Zurich Dental Institute, Zurich, Switzerland, while pursuing a Swiss doctorate in periodontology, which he earned in 1974. He earned a doctorate in experimental pathology at the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle in 1978.

"The deanship at the College of Applied Sciences and Arts is exciting to me, specifically because my major background is in the health sciences field, and health sciences represent a large component of the college," Hassell said. "The college also has a Department of Architecture and Design, and I am a closet architect -- I have designed and built two homes and remodeled two others. I am currently working on the design of my third house, and if I get the deanship in Carbondale, I will build it there."

He noted the college's well-known aviation programs, and as a pilot, is instrument-rated, multi-engine-rated and rated in high-performance aircraft. Hassell has owned five different planes.

"Of all the deanships that are available, this is just about as good a fit as could be. That is what excited me about it, and why I am thrilled to be a finalist," he said.

"I'm interested in an opportunity to make a difference," said Pinder. "I have known about the University for a long time and it has a tremendous reputation. I'm looking to join a team that is on the move."Pinder has chaired the Department of Technology at Northern Kentucky University since 1994, and during that time the department has obtained more than $3 million in external funding. He cites extensive experience in strategic planning, resource allocation and reallocation, curriculum development and continuous program improvement.

He received the Award of Distinction for excellence in teaching, research and scholarship in 2002 from the International Technology Education Association for advancing the technology education field through a "sustained and recognized record of exemplary professional activity."

Pinder's teaching background goes back 43 years to industrial arts classes at Keifer Junior High School in Springfield, Ohio from 1961 to 1963. He then taught industrial arts at Rawlings Junior High School in Cleveland from 1963 to 1968. He spent two years as an assistant professor in the Industrial Education Department at Cheney State College in Cheney, Pa., before serving as a graduate teaching assistant at the University of Maryland from 1970 to 1973.

Pinder was an associate professor in the Industrial Education and Technology Department at Montclair State College from 1973 to 1975, and then an associate professor in the Technology Education Program at West Virginia University from 1975 to 1978. From 1978 to 1994, he served as associate professor in the Technology Education Program at Virginia Tech.

Pinder earned a bachelor's degree in industrial arts education from Maryland State College in 1961, and a master's in industrial education and technology from Kent State University in 1968. He earned a doctorate in industrial education from the University of Maryland in 1973, and completed post-doctoral study at British School Technology-Trent Polytechnic in England.

CASA "is a very diverse college, and has a good mix of technology programs and health studies that I am interested in, and I think I could add leadership to that position," Pinder said.

He cites his experience as department chair and as interim dean. CASA has 236 on-campus faculty, civil service and academic/professional staff, and 212 off-campus faculty and staff. The college enrolls approximately 1,800 on-campus students and 1,000 off-campus students at 19 sites throughout the United States, said Sarvela.Sarvela is completing 18 years at SIUC, and has been serving as interim dean since Oct. 1, 2002. Prior to that appointment he served as chair of SIUC's Department of Health Care Professions since 1999. Sarvela came to the University in 1986 as an assistant professor of health education. He was promoted to associate professor in 1989 and achieved the rank of full professor in 1992.

The college's annual budget is approximately $18 million, and he notes while serving as director of the Center for Rural Health, he was charged primarily with generating external dollars. Through "teamwork and collaboration," the center generated more than $2.5 million for SIUC and regional and statewide health-related projects, said Sarvela.

Sarvela notes the college last year instituted a "Lunch with the Dean" program. Students from each department can meet with Sarvela and Associate Dean for Administrative Services Fred R. Isberner to discuss concerns and share ideas for possible growth and development from a student perspective. Through the work of many people, both inside and outside of SIUC, the state recently announced release of $2 million in planning money for a Transportation Education Center.

Sarvela said the college must be committed to not only providing high-quality education in the classroom, but also via service-learning as well. He cites the Heartland Dental Clinic, which has provided services to more than 700 low-income Southern Illinois residents.

Sarvela earned a doctorate in health education in 1984, a master's degree in educational psychology in 1983, and a bachelor's degree in psychology in 1981, all from the University of Michigan.

"I'm honored and pleased that I was selected as finalist for the dean's position," said Sarvela. "The college is an outstanding college, and we have fine faculty, staff and students. We have much to be proud of in regards to our achievements."

Sarvela has enjoyed serving as interim dean.

"As a team, we have accomplished a lot, such as securing funding for the Transportation Education Center, submission of our first proposals for graduate degree programs, and increased our research productivity. It is a great unit and I would be pleased to lead it permanently."

She is an associate dean and professor in SIUE's School of Business, and has nearly 22 years experience at the university, where she started as an assistant professor in 1982. She has been an assistant dean and professor since 1995; last year, her job was expanded when Sumner was named associate dean for executive and continuing education. From 1986 to 1993, Sumner was an associate professor, and she also chaired the Department of Management Information Systems from 1990 to 1993.Sumner cites her teaching, research and service throughout her academic career as a professor in the information technology field, in addition to developing business/education partnerships, fund-raising initiatives, foundation and government-supported projects and corporate grants. She also cites her extensive experience in administrative leadership roles in higher education.

As associate dean, Sumner organizes and manages the "High Tech Institute," an intensive academic program designed to prepare liberal arts graduates for information technology positions. She also acquired $1.1 million funding for the Advanced Technology Training Center, a facility that "will enable the university to re-skill individuals who want to make mid-career decisions."

Sumner was a senior associate at the Center for the Study of Data Processing at Washington University in St. Louis from September 1980 to August 1982. She was an assistant professor at New York University from 1977 to 1980, and an EPDA Fellow at Rutgers University from 1974 to 1977.

Sumner received her bachelor's degree in political science and history from Syracuse University in 1968, master's degrees in urban history from the University of Chicago in 1969, and in business and education from Columbia University in 1970, and a doctorate in technical education from Rutgers University in 1977.

"I'm excited to be a finalist because the mission of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts is to enable students to achieve expertise needed to meet workforce needs for qualified people in architecture, health care management, information systems technologies and the transportation industry," Sumner said. "I am very committed to meeting those needs."

The college's strength is through building partnerships, she said.

"By building partnerships with the business community, CASA provides high quality academic programs that continue to be responsive to industry needs," said Sumner. "The college's commitment to applied research internship opportunities and teaching excellence all serve to strengthen the quality and effectiveness of its academic programs."