Vermont State College System seeks input on temporary chancellor

MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) A Vermont State College System search committee wants to hear from you to help find a temporary chancellor.

VSCS has faced declining enrollment and financial challenges over the years that were exacerbated by the pandemic. Three campuses were slated for closure under a proposal floated earlier this spring by former chancellor Jeb Spaulding, but after a major backlash from students and faculty, Spaulding shelved the plan and then resigned.

Members of a search committee Tuesday hosted an open forum over video chat to get input and recommendations. They heard from state high school teachers and administrators, VSC professors and staff, and alumni and students. Suggestions ranged from picking someone with a Vermont sense of humor to finding someone willing to eliminate the office in its entirety.

"Maybe eliminate the chancellor's office, maybe possibly eliminate that position itself," suggested one staff member and VSC alumni on the chat.

Others spoke about the high cost of tuition and a need to find innovative ways to adapt to a new future for higher ed, and improved coordination with lawmakers in Montpelier.

The committee has an online survey to help inform their next moves.