The Search for the Eighth President of Skidmore Kicks Off

The Search for the Eighth President of Skidmore Kicks Off

(Photo taken from Skidmore.edu)

After serving seventeen years as president of the college, President Philip A. Glotzbach announced his retirement in late Feb. with a message to the Skidmore community. He will be stepping down at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year. As the search committee gets ready, students are starting to voice their opinions and questions — all relating to what they are looking for in the next president.

Glotzbach became president of Skidmore in the fall of 2003, and has served the college ever since. Among the large-scale projects that have been developed, President Glotzbach has helped implement many new programs and buildings the Skidmore community that students and faculty value — the First Year Experience, Zankel Music Center, the Tang Teaching Museum and the renovation of the dining hall, to name a few.

Currently, Glotzbach, along with his wife Marie Glotzbach, are working on their final project: building the Center for Integrated Sciences (CIS). This center will house most STEM classes and will reflect the growing STEM community here at Skidmore. Glotzbach has made many significant changes to the college and will continue to do so through his final academic year.

The college has begun the process to find a new president, and many students are ready to be involved with the search for Skidmore’s future administration. The committee is comprised of professors, trustees, staff and students. Malchijah Hoskins ‘22 is one of two students who will be sitting on the board, and he is the only freshman to hold a position. Malchijah holds many roles on campus besides sitting on the search committee. His passions consist of “anything that has to do with the intersection of advocacy, art and social justice.” The roles he holds on campus vary from clubs to the Tang Advisory Council, and he was recently elected as SGA’s Vice-President for Inclusion and Outreach.

Due to privacy reasons of the college, Malchijah was unable to reveal the process by which the board will be choosing the next president. However, he was able to share what he is specifically looking for in the candidates that the board will be interviewing in the coming months.

“Personally, I am looking for a president who is transparent, who will not see Skidmore as a monolith, and has a track record of dealing with concerns of diversity and inclusion.”

He added that he is excited to be a part of this search, and to be able to be a representational voice of the student body in the process. He sits alongside big named trustees on the board, but is unphased by it, crediting that “we all have different insights and skills to bring to the search. For me, my voice matters no less than anyone else on the committee.”

Malchijah says he feels empowered to be a part of this experience and to have a seat at the table for a moment of such important change.

Many other students want in on the process as well. As news circulates about the presidential search, students are becoming more invested in the process. Alli Lasky ‘22 has a few demands for our forthcoming president: “I want to see our next president as someone who I know will make good decisions, keeping inclusivity in mind. I want someone who will continue to foster a safe and welcoming environment.”

Other students are concerned about who will be the face and representation of our college. Another student explained that they want “a president with a diverse identity. Whether it be race, gender, sexual orientation, whatever it may be. I want to see the president reflect our ever-growing diverse campus. Skidmore prides itself on diversity — let’s see it happen.”

Whether it be the issues the new president wants to tackle, or how they represent the college, students are passionate about what this process means for the future of this campus, its students and faculty. As the search continues, students will be anxiously waiting to hear updates on the process.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the presidential search committee or would like to convey your thoughts and insights on the process, contact Malchijah at mhoskins@skidmore.edu or Alicia Sandoval Vadillo at asandova@skidmore.edu.

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