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Finalists announced for director of Chancellor’s Scholars

September 3, 2013 By Susannah Brooks

A longtime UW–Madison administrator, a physicist and former engineering professor, a university leader with a background as a high school principal in Kenya, and a scholar of religion and social justice are among the finalists hoping to lead UW–Madison’s Chancellor’s Scholars and Powers-Knapp Scholars programs.

“The search has yielded four exceptional candidates with remarkably varied backgrounds, reflecting the diversity of students these programs serve,” says Douglass Henderson, chair of the 12-member search committee and professor of engineering physics. “We look forward to learning more about their approaches to the position during their campus visits.”

The finalists include:

Krishna Athreya, diversity director for the Center for Biorenewable Chemicals at Iowa State University. She has served as director of the Engineering Leadership Program and as an adjunct associate professor in Materials Science and Engineering, also at Iowa State. Previous leadership positions she has held include director of the Women’s Programs in Engineering and interim director of Minority Programs in Engineering at Cornell University.

Athreya received her doctorate in condensed matter physics from Iowa State and her master’s and bachelor’s degrees in physics from Cotton College, Guwahati University, India.

Jane Irungu, director of graduation and post-graduation success in the Center for Multicultural Academic Excellence at the University of Oregon. Previous leadership positions include serving as associate director of the Kansas African Studies Center, coordinator of the Foreign Language & Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowship through the Department of African and African American Studies, and program director of the Global Awareness Program in the Office of International Programs at the University of Kansas. She also previously served as an assistant principal and principal at high schools in Kenya.

Irungu received her doctorate in higher education administration and policy studies and her master’s degree in higher education administration from the University of Kansas. She received her bachelor’s degree in education from Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya.

Gloria Hawkins, assistant dean for multicultural affairs in UW–Madison’s School of Medicine and Public Health since 1994. Previous UW–Madison leadership positions she has held include assistant dean in Student Academic Affairs in the College of Letters & Science and program director of the Summer Collegiate Experience for L&S. Before coming to UW–Madison, she served as Director of Intercultural Affairs for Concordia College in Minnesota.

Hawkins received her doctorate in educational administration from UW–Madison, her master’s degree in guidance and counseling from Atlanta University, and her bachelor’s degree in music therapy from Michigan State University.

Kazi Joshua, associate dean and director of the Center for Intercultural Advancement and Student Success at Allegheny College. At Allegheny, Joshua also teaches courses in black studies and social justice. His previous leadership positions include assistant dean of students at Allegheny College, coordinator of multicultural development and enrollment management at the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy, assistant professor and founding director of the Center for Justice at North Park University, and assistant director of admissions at the University of Chicago.

Joshua holds a master’s degree in theological studies from Maryknoll School of Theology in New York, and a second master’s degree in religion (philosophical theology) from Yale University. He also pursued doctoral studies in theology at the Divinity School of the University of Chicago. He received his bachelor’s degree in special studies in social thought and action from Trinity College in Vermont.

Each candidate will give a public presentation, followed by a Q & A session. Dates are as follows:

  • Jane Irungu: Monday, Sept. 9
  • Kazi Joshua: Tuesday, Sept. 10
  • Gloria Hawkins: Wednesday, Sept. 11
  • Krishna Athreya: Thursday, Sept. 12

All presentations will take place from 8:30-9:30 a.m. in room 260 of Bascom Hall.

The Chancellor’s Scholarship Program is a highly selective merit-based program for undergraduates pursuing any major at UW–Madison. In order to increase educational opportunities for academically talented students, scholars who consistently meet program expectations receive a full tuition scholarship and a $400.00 book stipend each semester. More than half of the program’s graduates pursue graduate or professional degrees, with many going on to become leaders in business, education, medicine, engineering and other professions.

Mercile Lee, former assistant vice provost for academic affairs, founded the scholarship programs in 1984 and served as director until her retirement earlier this year.