Cambrian College has short-listed the candidates to replace the institution's outgoing president.
The college's goal is to have the new president in place in June, before outgoing president Sylvia Barnard retires, according to Roger Emdin, the chair of Cambrian's board of governors.
Barnard, who has held Cambrian's top job for more than 10 years, announced she was retiring this past September.
Immediately after her retirement, a committee of the college's board of directors was formed, and they hired executive search firm, Waterstone Human Capital, to help with the recruitment process.
The recruitment firm consulted with Cambrian stakeholders to develop a profile of the type of candidate they were looking for.
“From that profile, the executive search firm went and developed a candidate pool,” Emdin said.
“We reviewed the candidate pool and made a long list to do first interviews on. Those interviews were completed in February, which resulted in a short list who are being interviewed in March.”
The college's board of governors will have the final say on who is hired, he said, adding that he expects the matter to go before the board for approval sometime this spring.
Emdin said the college is looking for a “visionary” leader that can continue to find “innovative solutions” to deal with the economic challenges colleges are currently facing.
"The new president must also position Cambrian as a responsive and major contributor to the Greater Sudbury community, both from a social and an economic perspective,” he said.
Barnard definitely has big shoes to fill, as she's done a fantastic job of leading the college through “some challenging times” while still keeping the institution at the “cutting edge” of education, Emdin said.
“We need someone who has some of those same capabilities in terms of leadership and vision to make sure we continue with that process.”
There has been a number of searches for both college presidents and university presidents recently, and not all of them have been from the education sector.
chair of Cambrian College's board of governors
For confidentiality reasons, Emdin said he cannot release information on a number of aspects of the hiring process, including how many people are on the short list, where the candidates come from and what they do for a living.
He did say, however, that the search for candidates was “very wide,” and could be characterized as “global.” There were a broad range of people who showed interest in the job, “from across a number of sectors,” he said.
Emdin said his personal belief is the new president should have some background in the education sector, but whether or not they need to work in that field right now is “debatable.”
“There has been a number of searches for both college presidents and university presidents recently, and not all of them have been from the education sector,” he said.
Barnard herself has been working in the education sector for 35 years – 22 of those years were as a principal and superintendent in the elementary and secondary school system, another two as the vice-president academic at Georgian College in Barrie, and more than 10 at Cambrian.
Emdin said he can't release information about whether or not any local candidates are being considered.
When asked if a local candidate is preferable, he said “the right candidate is preferable. Whether that's a local candidate or not will be determined on the qualities of the candidate.”
Although he can't get into specifics about the candidate pool, Emdin did say he has faith in the recruitment process.
“I think we're going to come up with a very, very good candidate to lead the college into the future.”