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09/11/91

CONTACT: Stanford University News Service (415) 723-2558

Faculty recruitment continues to be strong, deans say

STANFORD -- Stanford's School of Humanities and Sciences "is still attractive to the best scholars in the world," said Dean Ewart Thomas, commenting on the 24 faculty appointments made in the school during the past year. The appointments will take effect in the 1991-92 academic year.

And at the School of Engineering, faculty recruitment appears to be strong, according to Prof. Charles Kruger, associate dean for academic and faculty affairs.

Thomas said that in general he is excited by the "stellar quality" of the new faculty in Humanities and Sciences. Many have interdisciplinary interests, he said, which he takes as a sign that "we are attracting a lively group of intellectuals." He also is encouraged by the fact that the 24 appointments include six women and six targeted minorities, as well as three other minorities (Asian or Asian American).

Fourteen of the appointments were in the humanities, eight in social sciences and two in the natural sciences. Thomas said that makes it difficult to draw conclusions about the effect of the adverse publicity Stanford has received in its disputes with the federal government over indirect costs, since he would not expect the recruitment of scholars in the humanities and social sciences to be affected anyway, and there were not many vacancies to fill in the sciences.

Physics Prof. Alexander Fetter, an associate dean in Humanities and Sciences, also said that since it typically takes a year or two to recruit a faculty member, any effects of the controversy might not yet be felt. Some departments, notably biological sciences and chemistry, feel that graduate student recruitment has been affected, Thomas and Fetter said, with the acceptance rate lower than expected and several prospective students specifically mentioning funding concerns.

At the School of Engineering, three appointments took effect in 1990-91 and seven will take effect in 1991-92. A woman and two targeted minorities are among the '91-92 appointments.

Kruger has seen no evidence, he said, that potential candidates have been turned away by the adverse publicity over indirect costs.

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