Dear Colleagues,

Over 140 faculty, staff, and students have volunteered to serve on three task forces recently convened by Interim Provost Theo Kalikow, and the groups began meeting the first week of October. They are charged with making recommendations, by Dec. 1, for improving student outcomes, reducing the equity gap, realigning student affairs functions to better serve students, and identifying programs and services that can be strengthened, expanded, restructured or discontinued. While each task force has distinct responsibilities, the primary driver for all is how to best serve students. The Task Force Guidelines also note the importance of identifying resource savings.

A website has been established to keep the campus informed about the task forces and their progress. Updates will be posted in late October, mid-November and early December. In addition, a campus forum will be scheduled in December to share the task force recommendations and solicit feedback from the campus community. The task force recommendations will be reviewed by the President’s Leadership Council, which will make a final recommendation to me. I will make a decision based on this recommendation about what implementation strategies will commence in spring 2019.

As you know, we face serious financial challenges that require a close examination of all that we do. For UNC to move past our current challenges, we need to make significant changes to how we are organized, what programs and services we offer, and how we operate. The task forces are but one part of this work. In addition to looking at academic and student services programs, organizational structures and staffing, and student success strategies, we will be looking carefully at each administrative function. The President’s Leadership Council is also working on an inventory of potential cost-saving measures to be discussed with campus.

All of these efforts draw from the collective wisdom and experience of people who are committed to finding solutions to the challenges we face and, ultimately, ensuring that students who choose UNC have every opportunity to be successful. I am heartened by the fact that so many people are willing to devote their time and talents to helping UNC become a stronger institution.

Andy Feinstein