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Finalists named for UMPI Presidency

Wednesday, 07 March 2012

Beginning next week candidates will visit the area

BANGOR -- Three finalists were named today in the search for a new president at the University of Maine at Presque Isle.

A 13-member committee has been working on the national search for several months. The search committee includes members of the University of Maine System Board of Trustees, as well as UMPI faculty, staff, students, and local community members.

The committee is chaired by UMS Trustee Samuel W. Collins of Caribou, who announced the finalists and the dates of their respective campus visits:

• Jon Connolly, Ph.D., Vice President of Academic Affairs at Sheridan and Gillette Colleges in Sheridan, WY (March 13-14)

• Linda Schott, Ph.D., Dean of the School of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO (March 22-23)

• Michael Sonntag, Ph.D., Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at the University of Maine at Presque Isle in Presque Isle, ME (March 20-21)

"Of utmost importance to the search committee is to identify candidates that understand the needs and mission of a rural university and how it fulfills many roles in the community," Collins explained. "In addition to serving as an educational hub, UMPI also contributes greatly to the cultural and economic vibrancy of Aroostook County."

Collins added that as part of the process for selecting the next president, the university community will have the opportunity to meet each of the candidates and provide valuable feedback to the search committee. Forums with students, faculty, staff, administration, community leaders, alumni and others will enable the candidates to be viewed from the perspective of all stakeholders and encourage comments as to who will best lead the University of Maine at Presque Isle.

Following the visits, the search committee will review all feedback and present its impressions on each candidate to the University of Maine System Chancellor. One candidate will be recommended to the full Board of Trustees for approval. The new president is expected to start this summer.

Last year President Donald N. Zillman, who has served as UMPI's president since 2006, announced that he will step down following this year's graduation event. He will return to his position as a tenured professor of law at the University of Maine School of Law in Portland.

Complete information about the candidates, including itineraries for their visits, may be found athttp://www.umpi.edu/presidential-search.

Located in the heart of northern Maine, the University of Maine at Presque Isle was established in 1903 as a state teacher's school. The University now offers a wide range of liberal arts and professional programs and a balanced curriculum that promotes a strong foundation in the arts and sciences. As one of seven autonomous campuses within the University of Maine System, UMPI serves about 1,500 students in bachelor, associate, certificate and online degree programs. The University is committed to close student, faculty and staff interaction in support of intellectual growth and personal development; diversities of culture, age and nationality among both students and staff; and public service that promotes the well-being of the people of Maine. For more information, visit www.umpi.edu.

Established in 1968, the University of Maine System is the state's largest educational enterprise. It has an annual enrollment of nearly 41,000 students and serves over 500,000 individuals annually through educational and cultural offerings. Two-thirds of its alumni—approximately 120,000 people—live in Maine. The University of Maine System features seven universities—some with multiple campuses—located across the state, as well as nine University College outreach centers, a law school, and an additional 75 interactive distance learning sites. For more information, visit www.maine.edu.