The Nancy Cantor Files

Vice Chancellor and Provost Spina not planning to leave when chancellor steps down in 2014

Although Chancellor Nancy Cantor will leave Syracuse University in 2014, Vice Chancellor and Provost Eric Spina said he doesn’t plan on leaving SU in the near future and will continue to do his job as usual.

“From my perspective, really not much has changed, other than in a year and a half we will have a new chancellor,” Spina said. “The work of the university continues and that’s my job to keep on moving forward.”

Cantor announced on Oct. 12 that she plans to leave the university when her contract expires in 2014. The search to find SU’s 12th chancellor is expected to take between a year and a year and a half.

Having served the university for 24 years and settling with his family in Syracuse, Spina said he has no intention of leaving SU anytime soon and is “not on the job market.” He has two daughters, a senior and a freshman in high school.

Spina began formally serving as vice chancellor and provost, a top position in the chancellor’s cabinet, in 2007. In addition to serving as vice chancellor and provost, Spina is a tenured faculty member for mechanical and aerospace engineering and former dean of the L.C. Smith College of Engineering and Computer Science.

Spina said he does not plan to pursue the role of chancellor at SU or another university, but would like to leave administration and return to teaching and research at some point.

Before Spina was appointed vice chancellor and provost, Cantor worked with Deborah Freund, who served with chancellor Kenneth “Buzz” Shaw as vice chancellor and provost. Spina said he would be open to working with the future chancellor if asked.

Cantor, who began her tenure in 2004, based her decision to leave on the amount of time she has spent at the university, Spina said.

“Every year has had its shares of joys and challenges, and some of these joys and challenges are very public and some are very private,” he said.

Spina said Cantor did speak with him before making her decision to say she was contemplating how long she would remain at SU.

Spina said he “wouldn’t speculate” on whether Cantor would leave her position as chancellor before her contract expires. Should Cantor leave before a new chancellor is in place, Spina would be in a position to take on the role of interim chancellor.

It is unknown what Cantor will do after moving on from SU, although her background and interests indicate she may move on to a position in government, higher education or work for a foundation. Spina said whatever Cantor decides to do, she “needs and will want to be deeply involved in things of great importance.”


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