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Agents of Change

Having been assigned the position of Dean of Students on April 13, 2011, Jean Conde will be retiring from the Office of Student Affairs by the end of the Fall 2015 semester. Before her initial start at NDNU in 2010 as interim Dean of Students, Conde had “worked at such institutions such as University of San Diego, UC Berkeley, UC Irvine, and CSU Stanislaus, where she most recently served as senior director of campus life…,” as detailed in a 2011 press release by NDNU.

At NDNU, Conde has been regarded as “friendly” and “remembers [your] name after one conversation”, as stated by Jessica Foresti, a NDNU junior. Foresti even remembers that “when she was on crutches, [Conde] wanted [her] to move so that [Foresti] would not have to go the third floor where [her] dorm was.”

In the public face, Nathalie Moutal, a NDNU senior, stated that Conde “takes the initiative…is open [to change, and] embodies [NDNU].” Moutal states further that “[Conde] has done a lot for the school, really cares about the people,” and has participated in countless events on campus.

With Conde’s retirement fast approaching, Craig Brewer, Dean of the School of Business and Management at NDNU, has nominated three candidates for the next Dean of Students. These include Joseph Onofrietti, a Massachusetts-based nominee who has worked in many institutions across the state such as Emmanuel College and Fisher College, Phillip “Flapp” Cockrell, a Mississippi-based nominee with an equal amount of work at universities such as Jackson State University and Mississippi University for Women, and Andre Coleman, a California-based nominee with extensive experience at Whittler College and Concordia University.

In a thorough examination of the three candidates’ resumes provided by Brewer, all three of them have very broad backgrounds in student affairs and have even served in high positions of authority at their respective institutions. In fact, all three are more than qualified for the Dean of Students position at NDNU.

However, students such as Moutal and Foresti insisted that the next Dean of Students be an “[agent] of change” and to “care…, listen…, and implement” progressive advancements to the university. Moreover, Moutal stated that she wishes for the future Dean of Students to have stronger “interaction between students and the university…and [make] a presence on campus by going to student events such as clubs [and celebrations].”

While Conde declined a personal interview with the Argonaut’s reporters, Moutal and Foresti had these final words to say to the next Dean of Students: “Don’t let the university or the world change your vision” for the school and “be open-minded to the limitations of the students. On behalf on the students, faculty, and staff, Brewer would like to thank “Dean Jean for her many contributions and accomplishments during her tenure at NDNU” and to have a memorable retirement. The university community eagerly awaits the legacy of the next Dean of Students.

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