Employee turnover continues at Clark as President Karin Edwards approaches her second annual State of the College address in January.
As Clark transitioned from remote to partially in-person classes, several high-profile employees were among the departures announced during the fall term, including Genevieve Howard, interim Vice President of Instruction; Michael Brown, dean of Clark Libraries & Academic Success Services; Melissa Williams, director of student equity and inclusion; Dave Daly, associate director of the Veterans Resource Center and John Maduta, director of advising services.
According to Brad Avakian, vice president of human resources, there is work to be done in retaining employees, but he doesn’t consider this turnover anything different from changes in recent years. Avakian joined Clark in July amid a previous wave of high-level turnover.
“Clark has found itself in a position through the pandemic where folks have been strained between work and personal life, or have looked for jobs that were fully remote, when we have not been at times,” said Avakian. “And you layer onto that the fact that our public salaries just are not competitive with the private sector, all the time, or even sometimes with other state agencies.”
Genevieve Howard’s departure from her position of interim Vice President of Instruction was announced Dec. 3. Paul Wickline will become the new Vice President of Instruction in January. Wickline has experience in teaching English and drama, as well as various leadership roles in higher education.
“For me, teaching was always about building a sense of community, and the same is true for being an administrator,” said Wickline.
Clark Libraries & Academic Success Services Dean Michael Brown’s departure was announced on Nov. 12, with Julie Austead becoming the interim dean. Director of student equity and inclusion Melissa Williams’ departure was announced Oct. 29. Director of Advising John Maduta’s departure was announced Nov. 19.
Regardless of why employees left the college, the impact on students is still the same. In the Veteran’s Resource Center, the departures of Dave Daly and Rowan Coash, as well as the hiring of Phary Cox were announced Oct. 22.
“In terms of the staffing in Advising and the VRC, I am more than happy to report that we are currently recruiting for the Associate Director of Veterans Resource Center and the Director of Advising and Career Services will be posted shortly,” said Vice President of Student Affairs Michele Cruse.“Until both roles are filled, both departments have very good staffing support in place to ensure that our student needs are met. We expect both roles to be filled during the first two months of 2022.”