TCU uses listening sessions to answer student questions on president search


The Harrison Administration Building, where the TCU President will have an office. (Anya Ivory/TCU360)

By Anya Ivory

In the dawn of its 150th year, TCU has a campus and community that continues to grow. To help usher in this untiring development, TCU plans to hire a University President. This president will report to Chancellor Victor Boschini and oversee day-to-day operations by fall 2023.

The timeline of the search started last fall when trustee Sheryl Adkins-Green was appointed head of the advisory committee. Priority applications were due on Aug. 31, and Adkins-Green says formal interviews should start “very soon.”

The campus community could also make their voices heard by leaving a message with the president search email or by attending one of three listening sessions, specially tailored to different stakeholders.

The final session was open to all students and took place in the Brown-Lupton University Union on Sept. 14.

Forty-seven seats were filled on that Thursday. Some students attended to learn more about what getting a president means.

“I still don’t know what [the president]’s going to do,” said senior food management major Riane Meekins. Meekins came to the listening session with one of her professors for a class that discusses power dynamics.

“We had a list of questions for candidates we thought were going to be there,” said Meekins. “We didn’t know what it was going to look like because it was a little vague.”

In addition to expectations for the new senior role, students shared points of dissatisfaction they hoped would be addressed.

“I was left with more ideas than answers for how TCU can enhance listening sessions,” said Dezirae Rodriguez, a senior communication studies major who had long known about the search. “To truly transition from this idea of ‘involvement’ to the execution of what happens after. We still don’t know what the president will do, so how are we to set and enforce expectations? We’ve talked long and hard about what we want, but how do we ensure that’s what we’ll get?”

Sheryl Adkins-Green insists time will help clarify the role of the president.

“We want to adapt the role to the person,” she said, pointing to guidelines set by the trustees this year. “We know [the role] will allow for the Chancellor to do more fundraising, and we hope the community trusts that we can collectively make the best decision for this institution.”

While this president is positioned to be Boschini’s successor, Adkins-Green is still unsure if they will go on to be “Chancellor.” The TCU community is encouraged to stay up to date with changes via the TCU President Search website.