The beginning of the next scholastic year will bring many changes to Drew, including having an interim dean in office. As Dean of the College of Liberal Arts Jonathan Levin leaves Drew to pursue other academic affairs, Alan Candiotti, a math and computer science professor, will take over and work on some of the pertinent issues the school is currently facing.
According to Candiotti, Drew is facing budget issues that need tending. “I am taking over the Drew2017 project,” he said. “This is one of my first projects as interim dean. The 2017 project will take off in July and will continue for two to three years.”
The goal, Candiotti explained, is to tackle Drew’s financial issues. “The school has had unbalanced budgets for some time, and we want that money to go to sustainable monetary operation as well as strong academic programs,” Candiotti said. “We want to manage the programs and keep an eye on the budget.”
Additionally, Candiotti seeks to find a way to represent students in the process, having worked closely with the Student Government for years. “We’d like to continue to give back to the students. They are a part of the community,” he said.
Candiotti has been a faculty member at Drew for more than 30 years. He was a full-time math and computer science professor and taught courses like calculus and statistics before he held other more demanding positions, such as the chairs of the Math and Computer Science departments for eight years. He was even the director of New Jersey’s Governor’s school for some time. “I was the director of the Governor’s school for a few weeks in the summer,” Candiotti said. “I had to teach a few courses for several weeks and supervise the academic programs.”
He held this position first in 1986 and then from 1988 to 1990. Shortly after, he was nominated for another position, which he has held for a longer time. “I was promoted to assistant vice president of University Technology in 1994,” Candiotti said, which entails “supervising academic and administrative technology programs while teaching every semester.”
So far, Candiotti’s many positions have made him successful, which contributed to his nomination this year. Director of Computer and Networking Services Mike Richichi is one such individual who thinks Candiotti has worked hard in his field and discussed his accomplishments.
“Dr. Candiotti has accomplished much in his 19 years as assistant vice president of University Technology,” Richichi said. “Those 19 years have seen an incredible growth of the use of IT in higher education, and he’s been ensuring that Drew remains up-to-date and is engaging in new uses of technology in higher education,” Richichi said. Candiotti has helped manage the Computer Initiative program and is now “overseeing our transition away from it.”
The campus-wide network was implemented during Candiotti’s tenure, and according to Richichi, it has “continued to grow and develop it.” As the leader of the Drew 360 project, Candiotti shepherded the immense work needed to implement a new campus-wide administrative Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. This project was completed on time and under budget.
“His other professional service as co-chair of last year’s organizational review and as a member of several other university-wide committees is always thoughtful and insightful,” Richichi added. “And his values of fairness and his desire for assessment means he helps the University make decisions that benefit it and faculty, staff and students.”
But Richichi also regards Candiotti as being a “great professor,” having had him for two courses as an undergraduate. “He was informative, funny, and thoughtful. His tests (especially Calculus III) were hard but always fair.” Candiotti’s continued commitment to service as a faculty member is incredibly important and beneficial to the institution.
Besides Richichi, David Muha is another faculty member who holds Candiotti in high regards for his career and professionalism. “Dr. Candiotti has distinguished himself in the classroom and as an administrator,” Muha said.
“The broad institutional knowledge that he brings to the position of dean will prove invaluable to the College and university,” Muha added. “I’ve had the privilege of working with Alan on a number of projects, including Drew 360 and last year’s Organizational Review.” Muha describes Candiotti as thoughtful, well-respected and always considers multiple perspectives when making decisions.
Both Richichi and Muha look forward to Candiotti’s term as Interim Dean. “I think Alan will make a great interim dean,” Richichi said. “His experience first and foremost as a faculty member will inform his judgment on the challenging decisions the College must make as part of Drew 2017. Richichi believes Candiotti’s perspective as an administrator will also be important to ensure accountability and also to guide the administration to “greater things”. “He has had a front row seat, formally and informally, to the changes that this institution has gone through, and I really think he’s well positioned to both draw on our past and lay the foundation for a great future for the institution.”
“And,” Muha added, “to enable the next President and the next Dean to move forward with a stronger College, and thus a stronger University. I think he will prove to be an excellent dean of the College. The knowledge he has will no doubt enable him to be an effective leader over the next two years.”
Candiotti also expressed his enthusiasm at his new position. “I am looking forward to [it]. It’s bigger than anything I’ve ever done before,” he said. “I enjoy teaching students and being with students and this is what matters.”