FAMU Begins Search for New SJGC Dean PDF Print E-mail
By Dominique Mays -- Black College Wire   

During a quarterly colloquium, James Hawkins, dean of Florida A&M’s School of Journalism & Graphic Communication, said that, in approximately a year, he plans "to be on the golf course in San Diego."

A search committee has been appointed with Valencia Matthews, director of FAMU's Essential Theatre and an assistant dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, serving as chair of the committee.

Matthews was given the position as chair by University Provost Cynthia Hughes Harris on Oct. 3.

The Famuan
Dean James Hawkins
The Search Committee consists of 12 FAMU staff members, seven from SJGC and the remaining five from other departments and schools. There will also be a student panel on the committee, but Matthews said the committee is scheduled to meet this month to outline the types of qualifications and credentials they are looking for in the next leader of SJGC.

"This is kind of like a committee project, to make sure everyone is aware of the duties and responsibilities of the kind of individual we are looking to lead," Matthews said.

Hawkins has been with Florida A&M for 34 years and spent eight of them as dean of SJGC. Hawkins has no involvement with the search committee and the appointing of the new dean of the school.

However, he does know the type of person the SJGC will need in order to excel.

"They have to be a person of energy, a person of vision," Hawkins said.

Once retired, Hawkins plans to keep busy working on a screenplay and traveling the world to play on 12 golf courses he has been yearning to tee off on.

SJGC Knight Chair in Journalism Joe Ritchie is a member of the Search Committee.

"SJGC is in need of someone who will not only oversee the school, but implement programs and staff that are going to take charge in the growth and prosperity of the school," said Ritchie, who has been a professor in SJGC for 19 years.

"Due to the many budget cuts, the loss of the IT professional, as well as TV 20 staff and accreditation issues, SJGC has seen hard times,” Ritchie said. “We need someone that is going to come in and do more than just tread water. We need someone that will help us move forward.”

The SJGC dean post is one of several dean positions the university is still trying to fill.

Dominique Mays writes for The FAMUAN, the Florida A&M University student newspaper, which originally published this article.

Posted Oct. 18, 2011
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