No sequestration without representation

The board of trustees — oh, sorry, the “search committee” — has narrowed the pool of presidential candidates to three. Two academics and a financier remain.

Students’ tuition dollars will pay the salary of the next president who will affect the fate of the faculty union’s next contract. Yet the board comprises the majority of the search committee. Students and faculty are effectively shut out of the process.

Two students, albeit student trustees, and just one faculty member sit on the committee, but with a student body of more than 13,000 and several hundred faculty members, this is far from adequate representation.

The remainder of the 17-member committee is current and former trustees, a retired associate provost and two alumni.

Ohio State University and the University of Cincinnati used diverse committees in their most recent searches. Seven professors and two deans represented the faculty on OSU’s committee.

Decisions like these should be more inclusive. The board was always going to make the final decision anyway, but we would have appreciated a bigger say in the process.

If the faculty contract negotiations in 2011 are to be a guidepost, the board will choose someone business-minded with a financial focus.

This, and the proposed changes in higher education funding from the state, could result in changes that affect the student body’s wallets.

So, when our tuition rate is at stake, we want a say.