UNC’s Boxill: “We Are All Partners”
During Jan Boxill’s first faculty meeting as Chair of the Faculty Council, she shared the theme that “we are all partners.”
In her final speech to the Faculty Council Friday, she reflected on her time as Chair and shared her hopes for the future of faculty governance as her term nears its end, adding that she still holds that theme to be true.
“We will continue to be faced with challenges, but I think together, I am confident that we can overcome them and become a stronger University that we can all be proud of, that we can share in. I emphasize the word ‘share,’” she said.
When Boxill began her term in the leadership position as one of UNC’s top academic officials in July of 2011, the University was dealing with steep budget cuts, and most notably, the ongoing academic and athletic scandals.
“There was a lot of work to be done by the faculty, so I certainly knew that I was embarking on a daunting expedition.”
Boxill has faced her share of criticism in connection to the University’s athletic and academic scandals, and this fallout continues to see new life.
In mid-July, 2013, Boxill, was accused by the News and Observer of a cover-up for an internal University email about information regarding academic fraud issues in the African and Afro-American Studies Department.
The department had been found to have offered fake and no-show classes.
Boxill told WCHL in the following weeks that she was cast in a negative light for trying to help the University at a time when its reputation was in jeopardy with the NCAA, the media, and the public.
During the meeting Friday, she thanked the Committee for their encouragement during a period of public scrutiny.
Boxill’s time as Chair will end in July, and Dr. Bruce Cairns, Professor in the Department of Surgery and Director of the N.C. Jaycee Burn Center, will succeed her.
In April, with record voter turnout, Cairns was elected to the position.
This increased participation from the faculty, Boxill said, made her confident that the UNC community will continue to remain engaged, saying that, “None of us can do what we need to do alone.”
“We were not and are not islands unto ourselves,” she said.