A longtime, accomplished educator at UNLV could temporarily take the college’s helm beginning July 1.
Nevada System of Higher Education Chancellor Thom Reilly has recommended Honors College Dean Marta Meana to become UNLV’s acting president after the departure of President Len Jessup.
“She has a stellar reputation with faculty and students,” Reilly said. “She tripled enrollment in the honors college.”
The Nevada Board of Regents is scheduled to consider the appointment at a special meeting on June 4, and Meana’s appointment would take effect July 1. That is the same date Jessup will become president of Claremont Graduate University in Southern California.
Jessup’s official last day at UNLV is June 30, but he is on vacation through that date. Provost Diane Chase is the university’s officer in charge until an acting president is officially in place.
Meana, 60, joined the college’s psychology department in 1997 and previously served as senior adviser to the UNLV president. She became dean of the Honors College in 2014.
Reilly said he picked Meana after hosting 11 forums about the presidency. His decision was first reported by The Nevada Independent on Thursday. Reilly also said he wants to hire a search firm after the fall semester begins in order to cast “the widest net possible” to find a new president.
A committee of students, faculty and UNLV community members will be created to help identify potential candidates and participate in the process, he said.
Reilly said that Meana has told him she is not interested in becoming UNLV’s next permanent president. She also doesn’t plan to use this interim position as a steppingstone to a presidency at another college.
“UNLV is her home,” Reilly said. “It’s where she’s going to end her career.”
Meana could not be reached for comment.