The University of Alaska President Pat Pitney made a pit stop in Juneau Thursday afternoon to speak to community leaders about the state of the university system and its newfound fiscal stability as it prepares to welcome a new chancellor for its Southeast campuses.
“I’m thrilled to share that after years of turmoil, the University of Alaska has turned a corner, we have fiscal stability for the first time in nine years, and this spring we’ll have a growing student body,” she said to the crowd at Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall.
Throughout her hour-long speech in front of members of the Greater Juneau Chamber of Commerce Thursday afternoon, Pitney spoke with an emphasis on the future of the university system and its work to increase retention and subsequent in-state employment of its students while also growing its student enrollment.
“Fiscal stability is the foundation for our successes,” she said. “Through our focus on workforce and economic development we’re supporting existing industries and more importantly empowering new industries.”
Pitney made sure to applaud outgoing University of Alaska Southeast’s Chancellor Karen Carey who in the fall announced she will be retiring from her position at UAS in May of 2023 having served three years in the position. Carey was unable to attend the event.
“We will dearly miss her and wish her all the best,” Pitney said.
Pitney described Carey as a “tireless advocate” for the Southeast campuses and university system. She said she has yet to decide on Carey’s replacement, but noted, “I think everyone will be pleased.”
The search for Carey’s replacement came shortly after her announcement in September, and in early January the university system announced the selection of five final candidates in the running to fill its chancellor position beginning no later than July 1.
Pitney told the Empire after her speech that the final selection for the position is likely to be announced in the next week or so.
• Contact reporter Clarise Larson at email@example.com or (651)-528-1807. Follow her on Twitter at @clariselarson.