The search for Virginia Tech’s next university president is still ongoing with no set deadline, according to Mark Owczarski, Tech assistant vice president for news and information.
“There’s no way to predict when that right person will be found,” Owczarski said. “When you try to rush those decisions, you usually make a bad one. You allow the process to occur as it unfolds.”
The 22-person presidential search committee — made up of Board of Visitors members, professors and several students — was established on May 24, 10 days after the university announced Charles Steger's retirement.
"We’re going through a list of qualities that we think the next president of Virginia Tech should have," said committee member Justin Graves, a graduate student in education leadership and policy studies.
"(The committee) has a graduate student, an undergraduate student, there are a ton of faculty members," Graves said. "Each person represents a different section of Virginia Tech, and they did that very intentionally to make it as diverse as possible."
Aiding the presidential search committee is Russell Reynolds Associates, a “premier provider of senior-level executive search assessment,” according to its website. The search firm has conducted work for 40 years, and leads 3,500 engagements every year.
According to the university news release regarding Steger’s departure, the president will stay in place until a replacement is found — even if that time period trails into the fall semester, Owczarski indicated.
“We’re at the point right now where we’re getting the word out to inform potential candidates,” Owczarski said. He also made it clear that the university was not committed to hiring in-house, but that the search committee would make the best possible decision for the position.
"(The committee has) met once so far, and we’ll meet again in a couple weeks," Graves said. "At that point we’ll begin the process of reaching out to individuals."