Saturday, May 18, 2002

University of Hawaii

UH-Manoa chancellor
selection applauded

Faculty and students praise
Peter Englert's education background

By Leila Fujimori

The University of Hawaii community welcomed the appointment of Peter Englert as the first Manoa campus chancellor since 1986.

The selection of Englert, a 52-year-old research scientist and New Zealand university administrator, was announced yesterday after a search that included 50 other candidates.

"He's very bright. He has a thorough and precise way of sizing up a situation and analyzing it and solving problems," said Kathy Ferguson, a UH-Manoa political science professor who was on the search committee.

"He has great track record with affirmative-action work in recruiting and retaining Maori students in New Zealand, and I think he'll bring that same commitment and strategies to Hawaiian students," Ferguson said.

Englert, who will earn $254,000 a year in his new job, will leave his current position as pro vice chancellor and dean of science, architecture and design at Victoria University in Wellington, New Zealand. He will take his new post Aug. 1.

"He's an internationally respected researcher with a tremendous amount of experience," said Karl Kim, vice chancellor for academic affairs at UH-Manoa.

Kim said Englert is familiar with undergraduate and graduate issues in a number of school systems, including San Jose State University, which follows the same accreditation rules as UH.

Student leaders who met Englert also were impressed.

"His responses to several questions made it clear his No. 1 priority is the education of our students," said Shayna Lum, secretary of the Associated Students of the University of Hawaii.

ASUH president Travis Mimura said Englert had a positive and fair perspective on issues of availability of undergraduate classes and faculty for counseling and advising.

Student Ari Van Assche, pursuing a doctorate in economics, read the candidates' qualifications on the UH Web site and said Englert "seemed to have a very open view."

Noting Englert is originally from Germany, Van Assche, a Belgian, said, "It sends a signal that this university is open for international students."

Englert beat out the other finalist for the chancellor position, Lynn Jelinski, president of Sunshine Consulting International, an academic consulting firm.

In 1986 the university combined the chancellor position with the UH presidency.

The position was re-established last year when Evan Dobelle became president.

University of Hawaii

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