Over the summer, the Center for Global Education Office faced the departure of Interim Dean, Mark Hosely; Assistant Director of International and Intercultural Programs, Kelsey Andrade; and Administrative Assistant, Ashley Trebisacci. This resulted staff changes in the forms of Dean Gretchen Young, Associate Dean Lynn Gaylord and Administrative Assistant Alyssa MacNeill.
The Selection Committee responsible for hiring the new Dean was led by Associate Professor of Psychology, Gail Sahar, who was Associate Provost at the time. It included a diverse group of eight staff and faculty members. “There has been some turnover in the Global Center, due to staff members pursuing new opportunities or making other long-term life decisions,” said Sahar, “The departure of Dean Hoesly, who was an Interim Dean and had never been appointed to a permanent position had been planned for some time, thus allowing us to do a search during the Spring while he was still in place.”
Sahar stated that this search committee met regularly during the spring semester to review applications and select the top candidates. She said, “We had a very strong pool of applicants, many of whom had extensive experience in global education. Gretchen Young rose to the top because she was already a director at Barnard, and she impressed us with her very thoughtful approach to global education.”
Young, who had been working at Barnard for seven years, was looking for a new opportunity in the Study Abroad and International Education fields. On her connection to Wheaton, she said, ” I grew up in Western Massachusetts, so I have known about it my whole life. (It is a) great institution, very well respected and I am a proponent of the liberal arts.” She added that with President Hanno himself being new to the college, there was a lot of room for new innovations and ideas.
Young stated that one of the challenges she saw was with many students being unaware of the interesting programs and activities that were being planned. Her goals include increasing the visibility of the Center around campus and to streamline some of the processes, especially in regard to applying for study abroad. She plans to work with students who are returning from study abroad or have had international experience. These new different perspectives and stories would help acknowledge and celebrate the diversity that is on campus.
Sahara said, “Her (Young’s) goals for the Center were shared by the Committee, and we thought that her approachable, student-centered style would be valued by Wheaton students. Beyond her considerable experience with abroad programs, she has expertise in streamlining processes to make the functions of the Center work smoothly. Overall, her qualifications and fit with what Wheaton needed in a director were excellent.”