Editorial: With departure comes opportunity
Resignation does not have to mean regression
Published: Friday, September 20, 2013
Updated: Friday, September 20, 2013 02:09
Rumors have been circulating since this past July, but with Wednesday’s announcement of resignation, Dean Daniel Innis is one step closer to a run for Congress. Although he will not yet confirm his decision, one thing is clear: the University of New Hampshire is set to lose one of its strongest driving forces in its administration.
Innis is not departing from the university entirely, simply transitioning into a different role here – for the time being, at least. This transition will surely mean change for the Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics; what it will hopefully not mean is a void in the college’s administration.
While the university has established plans to fill Innis’ position, his ambition will be difficult to match. Over the past six years, Innis has completed many notable achievements alongside his fellow business school administrators. In his email to students announcing his last day in his current position, Innis highlighted some of these accomplishments, most notably the completion of the long-awaited business school.
Innis stated that his goal was to “improve the student experience and to develop a business college that would position graduates for personal and professional success,” and feels that this goal has been reached. Having achieved this, Innis is able to step back from his role and into something different, whether that is re-entering university classrooms or preparing to bring change to Washington, as he suggested in his email.
Having been a university administrator for the past 13 years, it is reasonable that Innis is prepared to challenge himself even further with something new. The drive and ambition that helped him bring improvements to UNH are also what may drive him from the university and to the United States Congress.
“One of the keys to success is to be ready when opportunity comes your way,” he said in the email. And while the soon-to-be former dean clearly has an incredible opportunity, the university does also. Provost Lisa MacFarlane, President Mark Huddleston and the committee to select a new dean have the opportunity to bring in someone who is ready to build off of what Innis has helped build at UNH.
The ambition to improve the university shown by Innis should be one of the key qualities that this committee looks for in a replacement. UNH is a strong and growing university that is always looking for ways to continually build itself, and ambition is a quality that every incoming faculty member should possess.
The university has grown incredibly over Innis’ time in Durham and it would be a waste to let his ambitious progress be followed by anyone who did not wish to continue – or even try to surpass – his accomplishments.