The Daily Tar Heel

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Monday March 1st

Final School of Education dean candidate says connections are key


Basile has served as the dean of the College of Education at the University of Missouri-St. Louis since 2011 and previously served as a professor of education and chairperson of the Advanced Urban Education program at the University of Colorado-Denver.

In her presentation to a nearly full Toy Lounge in Dey Hall, Basile said schools of education, namely UNC’s, need to be the driving force behind structural changes in education policy.

“I think at the heart of it lies this notion of, ‘How do we look at the systems, the structures and the models, and how do we become the impetus? How do we become the catalyst for how some of these things begin to change?’” she said.

Though Basile’s exposure to UNC has been minimal so far, she said she’s excited about forging connections within the University community by tapping into what she said she had already noticed was a vast array of faculty and resources.

“You have more here than I certainly have in St. Louis,” she said. “You have a medical school. You’ve got these incredible centers. You’ve got all kinds of things that are going on.”

“How do we look across campus to think about how to begin to put that together? You find the low-hanging fruit, and you see where the people are who want to actually do this and just start to do it.”

Gary Marchionini, the dean of the School of Information and Library Science and chairperson of the search committee, said Basile was one of three candidates chosen from a wider pool of applicants for their superior qualifications and leadership potential.

“We looked at scores of applications,” he said. “We did interviews. We brought people to off-campus for some pre-interviews, and then based on that, we narrowed it down to three people who we thought were exemplary and got them here.”

The other two candidates for the position, Christopher Morphew and Fouad Abd-El-Khalick, gave presentations earlier this month.

Molly Sutphen, the Center for Faculty Excellence’s associate director and teaching and learning coordinator, said Basile’s message of making connections outside the School of Education was one she thought resonated with many people.

“I love her emphasis on creativity and convening and bringing people together,” she said.

Basile made it clear that the future success of any school of education lies in its ability to strengthen and maintain those external connections.

“I really, really believe that a school of education that can honestly and truly honor collective impact is the one that’s going to solve all these complex problems,” she said. “It’s just that simple.”


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