MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - A search committee will soon begin to review about 60 applications for the next chancellor at UW-Madison.
University President Kevin Reilly and the Board of Regents are expected to get a short list of candidates next month, with a new person to be hired this summer to replace David Ward.
Some business leaders recently said the new chancellor should have a business background – someone who can turn the UW’s research into new companies and jobs.
It has also been mentioned that state funding for higher education hinge on the schools’ ability to train workers for thousands of jobs for which companies cannot find qualified applicants. But Madison campus neuroscientist Ron Kalil scoffs at such talk. He tells the Madison Capital Times, “The UW is not a business incubator, nor is it a job-training school.”
He said the university’s role is to prepare students to, “take their place in the ranks of educated citizens, to keep these ranks from disappearing, and to train graduate students for sophisticated academic and professional positions.”
Other large universities have brought in pro-business chancellors – including former Alliant Energy CEO Erroll Davis at Georgia, and former Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels at Purdue.
Kalil says the approach would not work in Madison.
Molly Corbett Broad of the American Council on Education says educators are being pushed into many roles today due to an increasingly competitive global economy. She says Madison should get a lot of talented applicants because of its stellar reputation, especially in science and technology.