IPFW faculty: ‘No confidence’ in chancellor’s leadership

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) Faculty at IPFW have no confidence in Chancellor Vicky Carwein, according to a formal vote.

The IPFW Faculty Senate on Monday passed – by a vote of 27-12 – a resolution of no confidence in Carwein’s leadership. The decision will be forwarded to the presidents and boards of trustees of Indiana University and Purdue University, The News-Sentinel reported.

Monday’s vote comes after IPFW’s faculty in October filed a six-page document entitled, “A Faculty Notice of No Confidence in Chancellor Carwein,” that detailed what it laid out as Carwein’s multiple failures of leadership, flaws the faculty said did not adequately represent the university’s mission. That document came on the heels of IPFW’s announcement of an academic restructuring that includes the elimination of certain degree programs and a report by a working group with the Indiana General Assembly which recommended IPFW transition from a single multi-system university into two distinct campus operations.

Both were stains on the university and missteps by Carwein, the faculty argues.

In a statement Monday, Carwein said she intends to remain at IPFW’s helm despite Monday’s vote.

“(Purdue) President (Mitch) Daniels and the Purdue Board of Trustees have communicated to me their support and their desire that I remain as Chancellor given anticipated changes and those currently in process. I intend to do so. I continue to be proud of the over 1,500 employees of IPFW and the work they perform every day on behalf of our students and the region. I thank them for their commitment to the mission and staying the course during this time of difficult change.”

IPFW spokesman John Kaufeld released a statement on behalf of the university’s vice chancellors – Carl Drummond, Angie Fincannon, George McClellan, and David Wesse – that said the senior administration “strongly and unanimously” oppose the resolution of “no confidence” in Carwein’s leadership. The vice chancellors said Carwein has “continually and faithfully” served IPFW.

Senior administration believes that, as chancellor, Vicky Carwein has continually and faithfully served this university with an unwavering desire to honor outstanding faculty achievement and encourage new initiatives for growth through academic programs. Chancellor Carwein has made integral steps to encourage shared governance, and has worked diligently to build a comprehensive, metropolitan university.

IPFW faces severe fiscal realities that include a budget deficit and expenses that outpace revenue. Senior administration believes that to ignore the fiscal realities without taking action would be irresponsible to the taxpayers of Indiana and to the Fort Wayne and Northeast Indiana region.

Senior administration values the two-year USAP process, which involved committees comprised of faculty and staff members. The process provided multiple opportunities for input along the way. It was created to be a transparent process, with forms and results posted publicly. It was also a peer process, driven and conducted by faculty and staff members.

The senior administration acknowledges that the decisions impacting programs and course offerings are very difficult for faculty and students. However, the decisions were made with the best available data and in no way targeted the College of Arts and Sciences. The decisions do not reflect any underlying effort or statement against liberal arts or IPFW’s role as a “comprehensive state university.”