Thursday, September 09, 2010

Not My Problem

The position of "Department Head" in the math department is a five-year position. The first three years that I was in the math department it was headless. No one wanted to be department head, so there was an outside search (successful!) for a new head. This is currently year five of that person's term, and the current department head won't be signing on for another five-year term.

I am pretty sure that no one in the department wants to be head. No one wanted to do it before. All the full professors are even closer to retirement age than the were last time the department was looking for a head. Plus, who wants to be in charge when there is no money for anything? Also, based on the financial situation of the university and the fact that the math department just hired some new faculty, I bet that the administration isn't so keen on searching for an external candidate.

Well, I suppose if you permanently cancelled 1000 students' worth of calculus, you could probably find money to hire an external candidate. Oh, wait, never mind. The calculus teaching money is not in the college budget but is rather stimulus money in the university budget. The calculus is going to go away anyway. When the math department hires new faculty, no one ever thinks to ask, "Twenty-five years from now, have you considered running this department?"