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Inside WFU

Wake Forest news for faculty and staff

Provost’s Office

Faculty development award

The Nathan and Julie Hatch Prize for Academic Excellence supports a week of research and writing from June 29 to July 6, 2014, at the Summer Research Institute conducted by Harris Manchester College at Oxford University. Room, board and transportation are covered.

Faculty from the undergraduate college, Z. Smith Reynolds Library, and the business, divinity, law and medical schools are eligible to apply. University Professor Thomas Frank and Associate Professor of Romance Languages Kendall Tarte, the most recent winners, are available to answer questions about the program. 

Please submit a CV and a letter of intent describing your current research project by March 1 to Jennifer Collins, vice provost, Reynolda Hall 204.

For more information, visit the Office of the Provost website.

WFU will launch EMS for scheduling campus space

The following message is from Provost Rogan Kersh and Senior Vice President Hof Milam:

We are pleased to announce that the university plans to implement a centralized, campus-wide license for Event Management System (EMS) for scheduling of non-classroom space on campus. This software will allow us to manage space far more effectively, provide a user-friendly process for reserving conference rooms and other space, and collect/utilize accurate usage data.

As a result of Strategic Resource Initiative (SRI) work this past year, we realized that more than 30 individual space managers across campus were utilizing various practices for scheduling space. After assessing our current processes and costs, EMS was identified as the best solution for efficiency and ease of use. In addition, by consolidating existing EMS licenses and maintenance fees currently held by several groups on campus, we are saving the university thousands of dollars.

A cross-campus implementation team will spend the next 6-8 months working with space managers across campus to implement the software. Our grateful thanks to this team, whose members are:

  • Mike Ayuso, IS
  • Sean Brittain, Facilities & Campus Services
  • James Buckley, Campus Life
  • Alisa Elmore, Admissions
  • Kettie Fickter, Athletics
  • Max Floyd, Campus Life
  • Karen Frekko, School of Business
  • Beth Hoagland, Provost’s Office
  • Trevor Hughes, School of Law
  • Mary Beth Lock, ZSR Library
  • Sharon Melnik, Conference Services
  • Harold Pace, University Registrar
  • Randy Rogan, College
  • John Wise, Hospitality and Auxiliary Services

We are looking forward to reaping the benefits of this approach to space management.

WFU soliciting Commencement speaker nominations

Dear Wake Forest community:

As members of the Commencement Speaker Advisory Committee, we look forward to engaging our graduating students and other members of the university community in the selection process of our 2014 Commencement speaker. As we begin this exciting task, we look to you to provide us with speaker nominations for Commencement 2014.

Please submit your suggestions to by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 25.  Submissions must include:

  • Name of nominee
  • Two to three paragraphs answering the following question: “Why do you think this person would be an exceptional Commencement speaker at Wake Forest University?”
  • Any contact name(s) for your nomination (if possible) and/or any connection to Wake Forest.

We are especially interested in hearing from graduating students. Suggestions are also gratefully welcomed from faculty and staff.

As you can imagine, persons of this caliber are in high demand. While we hope to host a speaker from suggestions we receive, we cannot guarantee that our invitations will be accepted.  Your thoughts will be vital to informing our approach and to selecting a speaker.

This committee is dedicated to the transparency of this process, but please understand that the actual invitation process must remain confidential. Announcement of the Class of 2014’s commencement speaker will follow a similar timeline as in years past.

We look forward to reviewing your nominations.

The Commencement Speaker Advisory Committee

Rogan Kersh, Provost, Chair
Francie Fisher, Wake Forest Fellow, Provost’s Office
Mary Foskett, Professor, Religion
Jim O’Connell, Wake Forest Fellow, President’s Office
Samantha Perrotta, Event and Project Manager, Provost’s Office
Aubrey Peterson, President, Student Union
Mary Pugel, Chief of Staff, President’s Office
Jennifer Richwine, Assistant Vice President, University Events
Jay Sehgal, Student Trustee
Jacqueline Sutherland, Student Government President
Mark Welker, Professor, Chemistry

New Pilot Research Grant program is available

The Provost’s Office and the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs have announced a new WFU Pilot Research Grant (WFU-PRG) program to replace the Science Research Fund (SRF) and Social, Behavioral, and Economic Science Research (SBE) Fund.

The new program’s purpose is to help faculty in various disciplines to secure external funding for their research projects. Winning such funding has become more difficult, and proposals with preliminary data are much more competitive. PRG seed money supports preliminary data acquisition to establish feasibility, capability, and promise.

Upon submission of an external proposal, faculty may re-apply to this fund at once, circumventing the previous two-year waiting period, and allowing faculty to use internal awards to sustain continuous research activity.

Proposals should clearly establish the likelihood of obtaining external funding and a specific plan to do so.

General criteria and review procedures remain similar to those for the previous SRF and SBE funds. Basic application information can be found at Direct general questions to the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (5888).

Collins named vice provost

Jennifer Collins

Wake Forest is delighted to announce the appointment as vice provost of Jennifer Collins, who currently serves as associate provost for academic and strategic initiatives.  Collins is also a professor of law, joining the law school faculty in 2003, where her areas of focus are criminal law and family law.  She continues to teach courses on gender and the law (to both law students and undergraduates) and legal professionalism; her acclaimed classroom gifts have earned her both of the School’s top teaching awards.

Since taking up the associate-provost role in 2010, Collins has led the successful efforts to establish both the LGBTQ Center and Women’s Center at Wake Forest, organized a visionary year-long series of conversations on campus culture, and this past year spearheaded the university’s new well-being initiative. Last year, she also chaired a campus-wide group discussing expanded use of the WFU Center in Charlotte.

“Jennifer’s remarkable strategic intuition, collaborative gifts, and wide-ranging knowledge of our campus, built on her experience working closely with faculty, students, and staff, makes her an ideal choice as vice provost,” said provost Rogan Kersh. “I’ve been so grateful for her incisive counsel and creative ideas, on everything from online education to our capital campaign, as well as her vision for and profound dedication to enhancing the Wake Forest community.”

In addition to her extensive responsibilities in the provost’s office and law school, Collins serves as a lower-division adviser in the college and was integral to creating the new Faculty Fellows program. She is a valued contributor to Winston-Salem life as well, serving on the board of the Arts Council.

Before arriving at Wake Forest, Collins was a homicide prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, worked in private practice, and clerked on the U.S. Court of Appeals’s Ninth Circuit. Collins earned her JD at Harvard and BA at Yale. She is married to fellow-lawyer Adam Charnes; they have three children, Jake, Lily, and Sam.

July 2013 comings and goings

See a list of employees joining and leaving the University in July 2013: Continue reading »

July 2013 staff milestones

See a list of employment milestones reached by staff in July 2013: Continue reading »

Call for applications for Artistic Director of the Secrest Series

The Office of the Provost invites applications from the faculty of Wake Forest University for the position of Artistic Director of the Secrest Series.

As many of you know, Lillian Shelton is retiring after many years of dedicated service to the Secrest Series and Wake Forest University. We are truly grateful for her remarkable efforts in bringing the very best of the performing arts to our campus.  Although she will be impossible to replace, it is nonetheless necessary to look for new leadership.

After consultation with and advice from various faculty members who have been closely involved with the Series, we have decided to restructure its stewardship. First, we are searching for a faculty director who will guide the artistic direction of the Series; the responsibilities for this position are set forth in greater detail below. Second, the current Events and Special Projects Manager in the Provost’s office will handle all logistical and technical arrangements for the Series, in consultation with the Artistic Director. The Artistic Director will be selected by the Provost, following advice from an advisory committee, and will receive a stipend for his or her service.

The responsibilities of the Artistic Director of the Secrest Series may include the following:

  • In conjunction with the Secrest Series Advisory Committee, select the artists who will appear at Wake Forest during the academic year.
  • Chair the selection meetings of the Advisory Committee.
  • Attend the annual artists showcase in New York City in January (expenses are covered by the Secrest Series budget).
  • In conjunction with the events and special projects manager in the Provost’s office, handle the contractual arrangements for the artists’ visits.
  • Arrange a pre-performance talk for each event and/or master classes and visits with students, as appropriate.
  • Help select and supervise a student intern.
  • Submit an annual report about the Series to the Office of the Provost.

The ideal candidate will have depth and breadth of musical knowledge, a long-standing commitment to the performing arts, and a passion for their importance in the university setting. If you are interested in being considered for this position, please submit a statement of interest, including your vision for the future of the Series, to Jennifer Collins in the Provost’s office no later than May 30.

Wake Forest hosts eugenics conference

Scarred for Life logoAs the N.C. General Assembly considers compensation for victims of a state-run forced-sterilization program, Wake Forest will host Scarred for Life: The Legacy of Forced Sterilization at Home and Abroad,” April 4-5 in Annenberg Forum in Carswell Hall on the Reynolda Campus.

The interdisciplinary event is sponsored by Women’s and Gender Studies, the Journalism Program, the Office of the Provost, the Center for Bioethics, Health and Society, the Department of History, the School of Law, the Department of Politics and International Affairs, the Department of Communication, the Film Studies Program, the Center for International Studies, the Documentary Film Program, the Humanities Institute, and the Writing Program.

The conference will examine the history of the eugenics movement and its expression in North Carolina and Central Europe, and examine what lessons can be learned from the past as the world heads into the genomic revolution.

Genes for breast cancer, kidney disease and mental illness are being identified. How will this information be used? How might knowledge of an individual’s DNA profile affect reproductive decisions, medical insurance and employment? Continue reading »

Campus Connections is Thursday

Please join Provost Rogan Kersh and senior vice president for Finance and Administration Hof Milam for Campus Connections, an opportunity for non-faculty staff to learn about, discuss and provide input about issues at Wake Forest. The event will be Thursday, Feb. 21, from 8:45-10 a.m. in Benson 401, and it will feature a light breakfast.

This month’s Campus Connections will feature Kersh, who will discuss Generation Y (ages 11 to 29), contrasting them with the Gen X, Baby Boomer and Greatest Generation groups, as well as exploring their readiness to be leaders.