November 14, 2019

Interview set for provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs candidate

Meera Komarraju, the sole applicant for the position of provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs, will hold forums with constituents next week as part of a day-long interview process. Komarraju is currently serving as the interim provost.

In October, interim Chancellor John M. Dunn announced an internal search to permanently fill the provost and vice chancellor position, which has been held by interim appointees since 2014. A search committee representing campus constituency groups determined she meets the qualifications of the position.

During forums on Tuesday, Nov. 19, Komarraju will discuss her vision for the major areas of responsibility of the provost’s office, including academic affairs, enrollment and retention. The forums give university students, staff and faculty an opportunity to meet with the candidate and ask questions about her approach to the position.

The Faculty/Staff Forum is at 2 p.m. in Morris Library’s John C. Guyon Auditorium.  The Student Forum is at 5:45 p.m. in the Student Services Building, Room 150.

Position oversees academic units 

The provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs reports directly to the chancellor and has oversight for the academic enterprise of campus, including eight colleges and two schools. The position also provides administrative oversight of more than a dozen other units on campus, including library affairs, international education, online and off-campus programs, enrollment management, advisement and information technology. Working in a collaborative environment of shared governance, the provost works directly and closely with the vice chancellors, associate provosts, deans and faculty. 

Other responsibilities include: 

  • planning, development and coordination all academic programs;
  • monitoring of academic program quality;
  • administration of academic personnel policies working within a faculty collective bargaining framework;
  • faculty hiring, promotion and tenure;
  • administering the budget of all academic units once approved.

Candidate has long history of service to campus 

Komarraju has a long history of service to the campus.  Prior to assuming the interim provost and vice chancellor position in April 2018, Komarraju served as dean of the College of Liberal Arts, overseeing the largest academic unit on campus. She came to SIU as a lecturer in 1986 and has served as director of the Department of Psychology’s undergraduate program, chair of the department, and associate dean for student and curricular affairs in the College of Liberal Arts before her 2015 appointment as dean.

She is a professor of psychology and holds a doctoral degree in applied social psychology from the University of Cincinnati and doctoral and master’s degrees in industrial-organizational psychology from Osmania University in India. She also holds a master’s degree in sociology from Osmania University and a bachelor’s degree in psychology, philosophy and English literature from Nizam College in India.

Komarraju is widely published in her field and is a fellow of the American Psychological Association. She is a past recipient of the university’s Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award.

A link to Komarraju’s full CV is available here.