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Read full Fisher Report
UNIVERSITY RELEASES FISHER REPORT
AUBURN, AL -- Auburn University released today a comprehensive review of the university, with related appendices, as commissioned by the AU
Board of Trustees in 2005 and completed by Dr. Jim Fisher, an author and
national expert in university management and governance. The report examines
every facet of the university, and highlights two primary needs: the successful
search for an exceptional new president, and governance reform among all
governing bodies of the institution.
"A successful search for the next president at Auburn is the highest
priority for Auburn University's Board of Trustees," said Earlon
McWhorter, president pro-tem of the Board of Trustees at Auburn University.
"Our search consultant, John Kuhnle, proposed that we perform a University-wide
review in order to provide the best possible platform for the search,
and suggested that we retain Dr. Jim Fisher, the preeminent expert on
higher education governance. The Board of Trustees welcomed the suggestions,
and unanimously voted to retain Dr. Fisher."
McWhorter said that the final report generated by Dr. Fisher and his team
provides an unvarnished look at Auburn.
"Dr. Fisher confirms that good work is being done at Auburn by dedicated
people. The report also challenges Auburn in many areas. Many of the recommendations
are directed to Board policy and require Board action; others are specific
to the president, administrative structure and faculty. I have appointed
Sarah Newton, Sam Ginn and Charles McCrary to assist me in reviewing these
recommendations. All of the recommendations will be reviewed in detail
and taken seriously."
McWhorter said he is confident that the report and the resulting action
by the university will move AU towards its goal of being a leader among
universities and identifying the individual best qualified to lead Auburn
into a promising future.
Interim President Ed Richardson agreed, and added the report provides
recommendations that would be of strong benefit to many academic institutions.
"Dr. Fisher's report is a comprehensive view of the university; virtually
every area from academics and bylaws to personnel and technology is scrutinized
in light of best practices nationally," Richardson said. "There
is valuable insight here and this would be a useful tool for any university."
Richardson added that while the university has much to do and many challenges,
AU's strengths were also confirmed in the report.
"To have such highly credentialed outside experts affirm the high
quality of our students and faculty, our strong retention rate, the loyalty
of our students and alums, and the high athletic graduation rate speaks
of core strength. We also had confirmation of the progress we've already
made toward demonstrating institutional control, and I was pleased to
see such a uniformly positive view of the university's most senior officers,"
Richardson said he intends to work with the Board to prepare AU to attract
outstanding president, and "it is indeed time, as Dr. Fisher states
succinctly, to move forward without rancor from any party. AU deserves
The university will post the next meeting date, once it is scheduled,
on its Web page at www.auburn.edu.
Auburn University is a preeminent land-grant and comprehensive research
institution with more than 23,000 students and 6,500 faculty and staff.
Ranked among the top 50 public universities nationally, Auburn is Alabama's
largest educational institution, offering more than 230 undergraduate,
graduate and doctoral degree programs.
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