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ASU Chancellor Ken Peacock has set several goals for the university for 2013-14. Submitted photo

Originally published: 2013-06-25 18:26:31
Last modified: 2013-06-25 18:43:09

Peacock sets goals for ASU for 2013-14

by Anna Oakes

Chancellor Ken Peacock has outlined his administration's top goals for the 2013-14 academic year at Appalachian State University as the search for a new chancellor is set to begin.

Peacock announced in April that he will be stepping down from the university's top leadership post, but he plans to stay on until his successor is found. A national search could take up as long as a year, university officials indicated.

"Although I announced in April that I will move into a new chapter of my life when the next chancellor arrives, my dedication to advancing Appalachian is stronger than ever," Peacock said in a June 21 statement to the "Appalachian Community."

Peacock's first priority listed is to break ground on a new building for the College of Health Sciences, which was founded in 2010. In spring 2012, Appalachian Regional Healthcare System pledged to donate land on Deerfield Road for the facility if the university secures funding for construction by the end of its ongoing capital campaign, which is scheduled to conclude Dec. 31, 2014.

Randy Gonzalez, associate vice chancellor for development and alumni relations, indicated in March that ASU leaders did not expect to receive a state funding appropriation for the building. Peacock and other university leaders have said they are exploring public-private partnerships as a funding mechanism.

The next goals listed are to expand international opportunities and to create more scholarships for high-achieving students.

"The newly announced Wilson Scholarship Program is just the beginning," Peacock stated. "Additional support to this scholarship is needed, as well as for the Chancellor's Scholarship in The Honors College, to attract the best and brightest students."

Peacock also listed increased funding for need-based scholarships as a priority.

Peacock said he will work with athletics leaders to ensure a successful transition to the Sun Belt Conference, a shift announced in March that moves ASU to the Football Bowl Subdivision of Division I.

"We must be financially prepared for this move, including the required new scholarships and costs associated with the transition," he said.

Finally, the chancellor said he hopes to exceed the $200 million fundraising goal of the Campaign for Appalachian, a multiyear capital campaign that continues through 2014.

"We are within $47 million of our $200 million goal," Peacock indicated.

This Thursday and Friday, Peacock will meet with the ASU board of trustees in the first regular board meeting since he announced his impending resignation in April.

University of North Carolina Associate Vice President for Human Resources Ann Lemmon will review the chancellor search committee process with the board.

The board will also consider revisions to the Faculty Handbook, athletic contract extensions and a lease of 12,413 square feet from Charleston Forge Inc. for $194,544 per year. The lease is proposed to provide space for ASU's Research Institute for Environment, Energy and Economics, the Solar Decathlon 2014 team, psychology research efforts and other offices.

The board will receive updates on dean searches, the Interpersonal Violence Task Force, the Alcohol Summit Report and the University Housing Analysis.