An administrator at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse has been named Cal Poly’s new provost, the university announced in a news release Friday.
Kathleen Enz Finken, who has served as Wisconsin-La Crosse’s provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs since 2008, will start at Cal Poly in early February as the senior member on Cal Poly President Jeffrey Armstrong’s executive management staff.
“There are so many aspects and units of Cal Poly that offer student success and my job will be to facilitate ensuring student success on campus,” Enz Finken said.
She will be paid $230,000, receive health benefits and up to $14,000 in moving expenses, according to Cal Poly officials. She won’t receive car or housing allowances.
“Kathleen brings a wealth of experience to Cal Poly as a professor, college dean and provost,” Armstrong said in a statement. “Kathleen’s approach to problem solving will work well at Cal Poly. She is calm, thoughtful and collaborative, but also persistent and focused on doing what is best for students’ success.”
Enz Finken said Cal Poly is in a unique position to bring in funding to help supplement budget shortfalls through grants, philanthropic giving and alumni donations because of its strong reputation and success. She views alternative funding as a way to close budgetary shortfalls.
Increasing enrollment among out-of-state students who pay higher tuition than California residents also will help close the funding gaps, Enz Finken told The Tribune. Cal Poly President Jeffrey Armstrong said more nonresident students will be admitted in future years.
But Enz Finken emphasized that she doesn’t envision a “mass influx” of out-of-state students who would dominate the campus.
Prior to her time at Wisconsin-La Crosse, Enz Finken served as dean of the College of Arts and Humanities at Minnesota State University Moorhead from 2004-08 and as chairwoman of the university’s Department of Art and Design from 2000-02.
She was a professor of art history at the Minnesota campus from 1993 through 2008, and holds the same role in Wisconsin.
Enz Finken earned a doctorate in philosophy in 1998 and a master’s degree in art history in 1987 at Rutgers University in New Jersey. She holds a bachelor’s degree in art history from Douglass College for Women (now Douglass Residential College) and also studied at the Syracuse University School of Architecture.
She succeeds Robert Koob, who has served as Cal Poly’s interim provost since September 2008. Koob has also been serving as interim vice president for advancement and CEO of the Cal Poly Foundation since spring 2010, when the late Sandra Ogren retired from the posts because of health problems.
Cal Poly announced last month that Deborah Read, vice president for university advancement at the University of Dayton in Ohio, was named Cal Poly’s new vice president for university advancement and CEO of the Cal Poly Foundation. Read will start at Cal Poly on Jan. 1.