UVM faculty members question administration on presidential hiring process

BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) Faculty members at the University of Vermont on Monday got to question the administration over the presidential hiring process.

Some were surprised when the administration announced just one finalist for the top job-- Suresh Garimella.

In the past, a group of finalists was invited to campus to meet with the faculty before the final nominee was chosen.

The administration says the reason for the change in process was that it's harder to get candidates to agree to a public meet-and-greet when their employers may not know they're looking at other jobs.

WCAX News asked people coming out of the meeting whether their questions were answered.

"My great concern is over shared governance at this university. And the faculty is largely being omitted from this process," said John Forbes, a UVM theater professor.

"Any fears that I had that something nefarious was going on were completely allayed," said Steve Zdatny, a UVM history professor.

UVM says out of a pool of 90 candidates, the search committee narrowed it down to 10, then went to meet candidates off-site, before inviting Garimella.

The board will consider both the private and public vetting process.

We expect to hear from Garimella himself when he is on campus Thursday.