University of Vermont

Dean Miller Assumes Leadership of CADREI

Assuming her role as President, Dean Fayneese Miller presided over the annual fall meeting of the Council of Academic Deans From Research Education Institutions (CADREI), held at the Naples Beach Hotel and Golf Club, in Naples, Florida, at the end of September.  Serving last year as President Elect of CADREI, Dean Miller rose this year to take over leadership of the organization, the central role to which she was elected by the membership, and a position she will hold this year and next.  As President of CADREI, as well as Chairman of the Board of the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education (AACTE), Dean Miller is now counted among the top echelon of educational leaders in America. The two important positions she holds insure her prominence in the ongoing and often contentious debates about educational practice and policy being waged today on the national level.  Her visibility on the national scene not only gives her a voice in the national conversation about education, but brings deserved recognition to the University of Vermont and in particular to the College of Education and Social Services (CESS), as a place of innovation and cutting edge initiatives in higher education in America. 

As her first order of business as Council President, Dean Miller greeted those attending the New Deans Institute the day before the official start of the annual meeting.  In her welcome, she encouraged the new deans to remain positive in the face of the certain and often daunting challenges they would be called upon to tackle in the future.  She also advised that they keep a steady eye on the important role and critical purpose colleges of education play in America, which is to train the next generation of teachers and educational leaders, no small task, she acknowledged, in the face of budget cuts, dwindling resources, and the reordering of national priorities.  

Dean Miller’s positive message continued the following day as she addressed the full membership of close to a hundred and fifty college and university Deans and Associate Deans assembled from all sections of the country. 

Dean Miller was especially proud of the program she and her executive committee put together for the conference.  “What we tried to do,” she said, “was to offer a group of sessions, with diverse panels and speakers, where attendees to the conference could take away information useful in the daily performance of their duties as deans.”  As proof, she was quick to point to the program, which included panels on the Education Research Doctorate, the Supreme Court’s Affirmative Action and Admissions Decision, State Policies Affecting Education, and the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) Commission Standards.  These, as well as important panels outlining Incentive Based Budgeting: Entrepreneurship and Innovative Practices, International Education, and Dean-ing in a Unionized Environment. In addition, Jane West, Senior Vice President for Government Relations and Policy for AACTE, provided the conference important Federal updates on the shutdown and other policy happenings in Washington directly affecting the work of the deans. 

Conference feedback was immediate and overwhelmingly positive.  As dessert dishes were being cleared at the formal dinner marking the end of the conference, Dean Miller was finally able to relax.  As she sat there with Kelly Circe and Laurie Gelles, who had staffed the event non-stop insuring its smooth functioning, all three were able to sit back and appreciate the beauty of watching the brilliant sun setting slowing on the horizon over the Gulf of Mexico.  A fitting coda to a job well done.