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Campus Activities continues ongoing search for new director

The fourth and final anticipated candidate visited campus this Wednesday and Thursday in the job search for the new Director of Campus Activities. The new candidate is, according to student workers at Campus Activities, already the favored pick by the administrators who will choose the new Director.

The new candidate has recently worked as the Director of an office much like Carleton’s Campus Activities Office at a mid-sized state school. He continues to work at the same school where he runs a student- volunteer program that he helped to create.

Like the previous applicants, the newest candidate’s time on campus this week involved a whirlwind of interviews and meetings- including time with the school deans, peer leaders, the One Card Office, Campus Activities Program Assistants, and CSA leaders.

At the CSA interview, Senators and guests asked him how he would address a number of concerns including how he would organize the Campus Activities Office, and the greatest challenges he thinks the office faces.

The candidate acknowledged that there were differences between the way Carleton and his current school manage student organizations, but said that if chosen he would try to find an organizational structure that fits Carleton.

“What I’ve picked up on is that [Carleton’s Campus Activities Office] is more of an autonomous structure; clubs and organizations don’t have advisers” he said. “But I don’t plan to come and immediately set up some kind of programming board system. I will assess the situation and then decide what structure would fit the school best.”

When asked the greatest challenge that the department faces, he said it will be moving past the controversy surrounding the dismissal of the department’s previous director:

“The biggest challenge would be the recent changes in staffing at Campus Activities and the reaction to that. It sounds like there have been concerns and frustrations and anger.”

The contract of the previous Director of Campus Activities, Robin Hart Ruthenbeck, was not renewed last term for reasons that have never been confirmed due to privacy concerns.

After meeting the fourth candidate, the CSA Senators expressed frustrations with the degree to which students have been involved in the process:

“Students weren’t asked to be involved in the search process for the new Director of Campus Activities–only to help interview the four candidates selected by a couple of administrators” said Senator Ben Barclay ‘09. “I’m curious if we could have brought in better candidates if students helped select them.”

Other students have been frustrated with the Dean of Students office’s reluctance to consider the current Associate Director of Campus Activities Chis Rasinen. Rasinen applied for the job, but was not granted an interview.

“I was disappointed that Chris wasn’t considered” said Jill Rodde ‘09, a Program Director for Campus Activities. “He knows the community well, and seeks out ways to find out what people want and need. Considering the fact that he has functionally been doing the job for a year, it’s clear that he has the necessary experience.”

The final decision on the new Director will be made by Dean of Students Hudlin Wagner and her associate deans; it is expected soon so that the new Director can begin work by mid-summer:

“We are still waiting for all the feedback to come in” said Associate Dean Bucky Zeitz, “But we are expecting to make an announcement as soon as possible.”

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