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GHSU will dominate administration of new consolidated university

Medical school heavily represented in new administration

Thursday, Sept. 27, 2012 7:02 PM
Last updated Friday, Sept. 28, 2012 9:34 AM
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The new administration for the consolidated Augusta State and Georgia Health Sciences universities will be heavily populated with current GHSU staffers, particularly at the highest levels, according to an analysis of the new organizational chart by The Augusta Chronicle.

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The new university is headed by current GHSU President Ricardo Azziz  ZACH BOYDEN-HOLMES/FILE
ZACH BOYDEN-HOLMES/FILE
The new university is headed by current GHSU President Ricardo Azziz

Part of that is because GHSU had positions, particularly health and research-related, that ASU did not, said GHSU Provost Gretchen Caughman, who will be the provost of the new university. In other areas, such as student services, current ASU people dominate, she said.

Still, of more than 80 filled positions on the chart, GHSU had more than twice as many people as ASU, according to The Chronicle’s analysis. In areas where there were shared services, it appears the GHSU employee got the superior position.

The new organizational chart was included with the application that was submitted to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, which will decide at its December meeting whether to approve the consolidation of the two universities.

The new university is headed by current GHSU President Ricardo Azziz and, of those who report directly to him, only Athletic Director Clint Bryant is from ASU (excluding a vacant senior vice president for administration and finance position). Some of that is because ASU doesn’t have a counterpart for someone such as Senior Vice President for Research Mark Hamrick, Caughman said.

In instances where there were similar positions, however, such as university fundraising and advancement, the GHSU person got the top job. In that particular instance, GHSU Chief Development Officer Susan Barcus had more experience on the kind of large campaigns envisioned for the future than her ASU counterpart, Caughman said.

“I have to acknowledge that it appears that in that shared service space, many of those certainly do fall onto previously GHSU employees,” she said. In other areas, there was almost a conscious effort to favor ASU, she said.

“When you get into the academic affairs and down into the student affairs, there is much broader distribution, sometimes leaning the opposite way (to favor ASU),” Caughman said.

Of those positions that were filled in which The Chronicle could identify the person with one university or the other, 56 were affiliated with GHSU and 25 for ASU.

What should help ease faculty concerns of favoritism in the new university is that all nine college deans are on equal footing and report directly to the same person, said Caughman, who is that person.

“We felt it was really important that everybody be at the table in the same way,” she said, adding that that doesn’t happen at some universities with health systems.

There are efforts to address concerns now and allay fears of what consolidation will bring and it will take a continuing effort, Caughman said.

“We surely can show that we intend to act with integrity and fairness and to really make this the best university we can,” she said.

Staff Writers Tracey McManus and Chris Gay contributed to this article.

Comments (22)

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Karen Slater-McDaniel
3095
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Karen Slater-McDaniel 09/27/12 - 09:37 pm
2
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Well that's a big damn

Well that's a big damn shocker! NOT!

Insider Information
4009
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Insider Information 09/27/12 - 10:15 pm
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Have you seen some of the

Have you seen some of the titles of senior administrators at MCG?

I would hope that ASU would be smart enough not to have anything similar.

Insider Information
4009
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Insider Information 09/27/12 - 11:01 pm
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By the way, I predict that

By the way, I predict that Azziz will be THE highest paid person in all of Georgia government by this time next year.

That includes the governor, attorney general, chancellor, everyone.

Doubt me? Wait and see.

Riverman1
70535
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Riverman1 09/28/12 - 05:00 am
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Time to Start Showing

“We surely can show that we intend to act with integrity and fairness and to really make this the best university we can.”

It appears it's time to start demonstrating the integrity and fairness. There is an issue here.

Benjamin Paine
233
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Benjamin Paine 09/28/12 - 07:37 am
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Leaves some questions

Doesn't the NCAA require athletics to directly report to a university president? If this is the case then none of the ASU people were really selected by Azziz as his reports. Also why are there no quotes from the president or provost of ASU sharing the other perspective? This really appears to be a takeover not a consolidation as the titling would imply. If I were one of the ASU people that still appear on the chart I would be concerned about my position longer term. It is clear by the quotes that they are not viewed as equally valued in this new organization. A second article six months or a year from now would probably see positions be even more heavily dominated by GHSU. Also it would be interesting to compare the salaries to see the relative values when this takeover is complete.

F4therTime
4656
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F4therTime 09/28/12 - 07:24 am
2
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I bet...

Unpublished

Azziz's salary is equal to that of both University president's added together...possibly more. Or should they change that title to dictator?

Benjamin Paine
233
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Benjamin Paine 09/28/12 - 07:29 am
3
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Removing the bias

One more thought on this. If the goal was to create something new out of these schools then wouldn't it have made sense to hire a new president with this experience? My thought is Azziz went with was known and comfortable to him and further biased by his personal associations with GHSU employees and limited knowledge at best of ASU and undergraduate education. A president brought in from the outside would not have had these limitations and, in my estimation, would have been in a better position to select people based upon the actual needs of the new school. This article is sad but telling concerning the individuals making these decisions.

Ruckus
467
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Ruckus 09/28/12 - 07:29 am
2
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Azziz

This does not suprise me and I'm pretty sure he'll be getting a raise next year. King Azziz making decision only for his best interest. I'm interested in seeing how this law suit is going to turn out.

Benjamin Paine
233
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Benjamin Paine 09/28/12 - 07:57 am
3
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Removing the bi_s!

The more I think about this, the more I think this just cries out for a new community group- Remove the A- as in- Dr. _zziz.

my.voice
4194
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my.voice 09/28/12 - 08:30 am
3
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Why is this a surprise? We

Why is this a surprise? We all know medical-types are smarter than liberal arts types. This is WHY the merger was a mistake. Its like combining a McDonalds and a Carwash in the same building......they just do different things.

And why, for the life of me, ASU cannot remain "ASU, a Division of GRU". Likewise with GHSU..........oh, and psst Azziz, it will always be MCG to some of us.

MarinerMan
2107
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MarinerMan 09/28/12 - 09:05 am
4
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And You Are Surprised ????

Unpublished

From the beginning, this smelled like a pile of rotting fish. ASU has gotten screwed, and did not even get kissed when it was over. The Regents are to blame for this pile of rotting fish. Azziz needs to go back to California. Everyone KNEW it was going to play out like this, we had just hoped that we might be pleasantly surprised -- but, NO !! It WILL always be MCG.

OnTheHill1
345
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OnTheHill1 09/28/12 - 09:07 am
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Let The Games Begin...

Azziz's Implementation Principle #13. Leadership: “We need to get the wrong people off the bus and the right people on the bus…. and in the right seats”

At the September 7th GHSU Forum, a questioner observed, "we see top administrators being hired, the fat cats are getting fatter" - Azziz answers in part, "the reason that you've seen what appears to be a lot of recruitment is you have to remember we have had an almost 98% turnover in administration across the entire enterprise..."

Azziz replaced those 98% GHSU incumbents with people who bow to his every whim, know their place not to question, and carry his message of intimidation, fear-mongering and threats with zeal.

Beware ASU leadership, have a current resume, begin your job search, your days are numbered.

Let the games begin, the name change was just the 1st step. More biased, self-serving decisions will follow, that could make the name change seem like a walk through the tulips.

MamaB
19
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MamaB 09/28/12 - 09:20 am
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About that leadership.....

Administrators down the hill are already taking control of the hiring processes at ASU, and the takeover, er, consolidation, isn't officially approved yet. Time to dust off the resume, folks.

NrthAugustaSam
447
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NrthAugustaSam 09/28/12 - 09:25 am
2
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Not very fair......

I have heard that there is a lot of unfairness in how the ASU people will be paid compared to the MCG people who do the same jobs. Lawsuit coming?

kiwiinamerica
836
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kiwiinamerica 09/28/12 - 09:46 am
0
1

Merger madness

Unpublished

The merger was a huge mistake. This is the real issue behind the name change furor. The nice, low-profile commuter college on the Hill wants to maintain its "Augusta" identity and fair enough.

However, the state medical college for the whole state of Georgia can not be named the "University of Augusta". No way, no how. Not in this universe nor in this lifetime. Hence, we have an ongoing controversy which shows no signs of ending.

younameit
122
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younameit 09/28/12 - 10:07 am
1
5

What's the news in (and

What's the news in (and purpose of) this story? Why would anyone expect those who have run a research university to become subordinate to those who have only run a community college? What's wrong in this community with placing the most qualified people in any job? Are we so wedded to quotas and entitlements that we can't see a well-staffed institution of higher learning as a huge, huge opportunity for this community? More importantly, are we so used to the limitations that quotas and entitlements cause that we're willing to jeopardize this opportunity? These are important questions because this institution is looking for the most ideal "place to call home" and it doesn't have to be Augusta.

Little Lamb
40136
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Little Lamb 09/28/12 - 10:24 am
4
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Grateful

That post above sounds like it could have been written by Grateful Mother.

Fiat_Lux
13863
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Fiat_Lux 09/28/12 - 10:31 am
2
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Don't worry about parity of salaries

It would be virtually impossible to pay ASU employees less than MCG campus employees are paid, when compared to average compensation for the same job pretty much anywhere else.

Some of us have been working at essentially entry level salaries for years and years without a raise, even though we should be getting way at the other end of the step scale for our jobs, based on education and experience.

But they always tell us, "If you don't like it, go somewhere else." More often they tell us, "Like they say in the old country, 'Tuffski, s---ski'".

Augusta80
4
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Augusta80 09/28/12 - 10:45 am
2
3

http://chronicle.augusta.com/

http://chronicle.augusta.com/news/education/2012-09-01/asu-battling-low-...

"In 2010, only 25 percent of ASU students completed a bachelor’s degree within six years and only 7 percent finished in four. That’s compared with the 55.5 percent of students nationally and 47.5 percent in Georgia who finished within six years."

ASU staff should clearly get get the majority of administration postions, with such a fine history of acadimic sucsess.

Riverman1
70535
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Riverman1 09/28/12 - 11:04 am
3
0

So you COMBINE schools into

So you COMBINE schools into one yet pay the people differently?

Academic success is a relative term. ASU has served the community well while MCG has gotten very, very little research grant money, even though it's considered a research institution.

Benjamin Paine
233
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Benjamin Paine 09/28/12 - 12:47 pm
4
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Augusta08 and HERI

And the four year graduation rates predicted for an access institution are only 19.3%. Lets make sure that we tell the whole story. Do you really think that the new administration will be able to change these rates assuming the same student body? And if you assume more selectivity that is comparing apples and oranges.

Sweet son
8232
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Sweet son 09/28/12 - 12:07 pm
1
1

Bet MCG got all of the support service

directors and heads of departments too. EX: IT, Human Resources, Physical Plant, Public Safety etc. Those titles would further load the MCG side. And notice like others I refuse to call it by Dr. Cool's name.

noway
201
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noway 09/28/12 - 12:30 pm
1
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Obvious

Athletics is the ONLY thing that didn't exist at GHSU that ASU already had. That's obvious. As is the Research VP - ASU isn't a research institution, which is why that didn't exist at ASU, but the shared services, all ASU people were given smaller roles and less responsibility. It makes sense - they all make less money, so the boss can't be making less money than the workers. There is little respect of ASU faculty, staff and students. ASU is just getting used to it. Nothing they can do.

Little Lamb
40136
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Little Lamb 09/28/12 - 12:56 pm
1
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Azziz Implementation Principles

Azziz Implementation Principle #26. No Respect: “Get used to it ... Nothing you can do.”

Skooter
64
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Skooter 09/28/12 - 01:05 pm
1
1

Positions must be filled

Positions must be filled based on merit and not on tenure. Simply because a person has served the state for X amount of years does not also imply that they are the most qualified for higher positions that become available. GHSU's annual budget is ~14 times ASU's budget so a GHSU/ASU merger doesn't imply a 50-50 split in leadership roles among the 2 systems.

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