The University of Cincinnati AAUP congratulates Neville Pinto on his appointment as the 30th president of the University of Cincinnati.
The AAUP voiced repeated concerns about the selection process. President Pinto was not involved in the design or implementation of the search process. Its failings should not reflect poorly on him or otherwise taint his presidency at the outset. The AAUP is eager to begin working with him to maintain and build upon UC’s tradition of excellence as a teaching and research university.
The AAUP is glad that the Board of Trustees heeded the chapter’s warnings about hiring a president without experience in higher education and an academic background. This, combined with the problems with the search, could have proved to be particularly unfortunate.
Still concerns about the search process remain. It was not the “open, transparent, and collaborative” process that was promised. Student and faculty input was severely lacking. It has previously been noted that the University of Iowa was sanctioned by the American Association of University Professors for “substantial non-compliance with standards of academic government” after its deficient presidential search. It appears that the UC presidential was conducted in a more secretive manner and with less student and faculty input than the Iowa search.
AAUP-UC will continue to examine this critical issue and explore alternatives in the upcoming weeks. Ideally, this will include, along with the UC Faculty Senate, a dialogue with President Pinto and the Board of Trustees about the principle of shared governance and its application in future searches, including the upcoming search for provost.
We will keep the faculty informed. Look for future communications on this issue.