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Andrew Perrin and Bruce Cairns vie for faculty chairman position

Sociology professor Andrew Perrin and UNC School of Medicine professor Bruce Cairns, are the two candidates for the three-year term position of chairman of the faculty.

The election will take place April 14 through 21. .

Philosophy professor Jan Boxill, the current faculty chairwoman , said the person in the position serves as a leader for the faculty of UNC as well as a representative. Boxill’s term as chairwoman began in 2011 and will end July 1.

“It’s happy and sad,” Boxill said of the end of her term.

“It’s been an incredible experience, one that I wouldn’t trade.”

Boxill said she found the job to be time-consuming but rewarding.

“The hardest part was trying to do the everyday things while dealing with all the athletic stuff,” Boxill said, referring to the University’s ongoing athletic-academic scandal. “Certainly the athletics is a major part, but isn’t the only thing that’s important on this campus.”

Perrin said he feels he is strongly suited for the position and that he would be well-equipped to handle any issues that arise during his term. He said his experience working on committees such as the Committee on Student Conduct has given him experience in academic facets of UNC, such as contextual grading and honor court reform.

“It feels to me like this is a position made for me,” Perrin said. “I totally love the University and feel like it needs a vigorous proponent in defense and that the faculty ... is where the best defense comes from.”

Cairns said his experience with faculty governance, position as Director of the North Carolina Jaycee Burn Center and passion for the people of UNC made him a suitable candidate.

If elected, Cairns said he would want to promote the different programs available at UNC and also to promote continued interdisciplinary faculty cooperation.

“We want to make sure that the faculty council and those committees that create as inclusive a group as possible so that all voices are heard and so that we are addressing all the issues that matter,” Cairns said.

Perrin said that if elected, he would focus on issues as they arose.

“There will always be something coming up at the University, and the best thing to do is to understand the principles that drive us and to respond to whatever comes up,” he said.

Perrin and Cairns differ in how they would approach publicly defending the University. Perrin said he felt he would be more defensive of the University in the face of criticism and budget cuts, while he thinks Cairns is more intent on peacemaking.

“When people attack what we do as problematic and dishonorable, I feel like it’s important to offer a strong defense,” Perrin said.

Cairns said he feels a strong defense is not always the best solution when considering the student body.

“What I would vigorously defend is our obligation to our students,” Cairns said.

“We need to think about the way that we conduct these conversations and address our students.”

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Boxill said she thinks both Perrin and Cairns are well suited for the job.

“I’m torn, because both of them are absolutely brilliant and will do a good job,” Boxill said.

“It’ll be interesting. They have different ideas, but both of them are well respected by the administration and well respected by the faculty.”