University of Nebraska launches search for vice provost for P-16 initiatives

January 22, 2014

The University of Nebraska has launched a national search for the position of vice provost for P-16 initiatives.

The new position reflects the university’s commitment to devoting greater energy and resources toward achieving the goals of Nebraska’s P-16 Initiative, which is focused on improving student outcomes in state. Creation of the position is among the new commitments NU has made as part of a national initiative led by the White House to increase college success among traditionally underrepresented students.

The vice provost will be responsible for leading the development, coordination and implementation of efforts that support the P-16 Initiative. She or he will work closely with the NU president, the four university campuses and other P-16 stakeholders to develop strategies that prepare students for the workforce and facilitate a culture of lifelong learning in the state.

“The P-16 partners have laid out ambitious goals for student success and workforce development in Nebraska. We’ve made important progress – like moving Nebraska to the top 10 in the nation in college-going,” said University of Nebraska President James B. Milliken, who is a P-16 co-chair. “But we need to do more to ensure that every student in Nebraska has access to a quality education – from preschool to K-12 to college – that prepares them for success in their careers and in life. The vice provost for P-16 initiatives will leverage the resources of the university and our partners, including K-12 schools and community colleges, to take our efforts to the next level.”

For example, Milliken noted the vice provost will be expected to:

  • Develop programs that increase the success of and expand access to education opportunities for low-income and first-generation students.
  • Expand current initiatives and develop new ones that provide community college students opportunities to continue their education at the university level.
  • Secure external funding from foundations and federal agencies to support program development.
  • Play a key role in creating workforce development reports that would be shared with the Board of Regents, chambers of commerce members around the state, policymakers and Nebraskans.
  • Collaborate with university faculty and staff in developing new post-baccalaureate educational opportunities.

An 11-member search committee will identify, recommend and assess candidates. The committee is chaired by Ed Scantling, dean of the College of Education at the University of Nebraska at Kearney. Other committee members are:

  • Wendy Boyer, senior vice president for community investment and advocacy for the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce
  • Shelley Henderson, graduate student in the University of Nebraska at Omaha College of Education
  • Tiffany Heng-Moss, professor of entomology at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  • Brian Maher, superintendent for Kearney Public Schools
  • Pelema Morrice, associate vice chancellor for enrollment management at UNO
  • Kevin Riley, superintendent for Gretna Public Schools
  • Susan Churchill Sarver, associate professor and assistant chair of children, youth and family studies at UNL
  • Jose Soto, vice president for access, equity and diversity at Southeast Community College
  • NU Regent Bob Whitehouse
  • Kristin Yates, NU assistant vice president and director of institutional research

The search committee will be assisted by Harris Search Associates, a professional search consulting firm. Nominations or expressions of interest in the position may be sent confidentially to Richard Skinner at The full job description for the position of vice provost for P-16 initiatives is available online.

Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the job is filled.

Media Contact:
Melissa Lee
Director of Communications,
University of Nebraska