Elizabeth Spiller, the second of four finalists selected in the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s search for its next executive vice chancellor for academic affairs, will participate in a public presentation from 3 to 4 p.m. Oct. 8 in the Nebraska Union Auditorium.
Spiller is dean of the College of Letters and Science at the University of California, Davis. She is in Lincoln for interviews from Oct. 7-9.
At UC Davis, Spiller led the integration of three historic academic divisions into a single college. She also coordinated a push to eliminate the college’s existing deficit and directed new resources to the college.
Spiller also served as dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences at Virginia Tech. Under her guidance, an expansion of academic offerings led to a 60 percent increase in undergraduate applications and a more than 40 percent increase in incoming first-year students. She also led initiatives related to faculty excellence, curricular innovation, and diversity and inclusion.
Spiller holds a doctorate and Master of Arts in English and American language and literature from Harvard University; and a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from Amherst College. She specializes in early modern literature and culture, with emphasis on the history of reading, and on literature and science.
She is the author of two books, “Reading and History of Race in the Renaissance” (2011), and “Science, Reading and Renaissance Literature: The Art of Making Knowledge, 1580-1670” (2004), both published by Cambridge University Press. Spiller has twice been awarded fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and earned a Fulbright Fellowship.
The executive vice chancellor is the university’s academic leader with the mission of achieving academic excellence across the institution. The position reports directly to the chancellor and, working with the academic deans, will assure pursuit of excellence through oversight of undergraduate teaching and learning; diversity and inclusion; enrollment management; education abroad; faculty development; global outreach; graduate mentoring; libraries, promotion and tenure; student affairs; and by developing innovating academic initiatives that will be recognized as unique signature strengths.
The first candidate, Laurie Nichols, interim president of Black Hills State University, interviewed Sept. 30 to Oct. 2. Remaining finalists and dates on campus are:
Oct. 9-10 — Samuel Mukasa, senior executive for global initiatives, Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost, University of Minnesota. Mukasa’s public presentation is Oct. 10.
Oct. 14-16 — John Wiencek, executive vice president and provost, University of Idaho. Wiencek’s public presentation is Oct. 15.
The candidates, selected through a national search, will participate in multiple-day interviews, including public presentations and receptions. Each public presentation will be 3 to 4 p.m. in the Nebraska Union Auditorium. A reception follows each presentation.