Computer science prof only dept head applicant

By Amy Schweigert

Arizona Daily Wildcat

A university-wide search for a permanent computer science head yielded just one candidate.

Larry Peterson, a computer science professor who just finished writing a textbook, said he "was encouraged to apply" for the position which has been run by acting heads for the past two years.

Peterson said the Computer Science Department should "set the agenda for computing on campus at the undergraduate level."

He said that teaching and research go "hand in hand."

If appointed, Peterson said he hopes to add about six faculty members to the department, including one or two women. This way, the department can mentor and produce more female Ph.D.s, he said.

One of the department's scarcest resources is space, Peterson said. A solution to this problem, he said, is to have more students telecommute to campus over computer networks. Resources would have to be allocated differently to make this a viable solution, Peterson said.

The job requires the department head to help plan and administrate the department's academic and research programs. Nominations and applications of tenured professors were due Oct. 30.

Peter Downey, another computer science professor, said he agreed last May to fill the position temporarily.

It was the "dean's intention to have a permanent head at some point," Downey said. He said he is expecting the transition to occur around Jan. 1, 1996.

Deans are responsible for filling department head positions. A committee is in charge of reviewing the candidates through a series of meetings. A new head is appointed by the dean, after a decision is made by the committee.

Dean of the Faculty of Science Eugene Levy said that the "timing seemed appropriate at this point," to search for an individual possessing "distinguished scholarship, leadership and educational abilities," to fill the position permanently.

The search committee consists of seven professors from the Faculty of Science and one graduate student. Udi Manber, the head of the search committee, said that closed meetings have been scheduled before the committee will make its final decision.

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