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May 2, 2022

Transformative Growth

Dear WesternU Family,

These are extraordinary times for WesternU, and opportunity abounds for transformative growth in both Pomona and Lebanon. This month I was reminded of the power of partnership - partnering with each other internally and embracing partnerships with our civic leaders and the business community.



I am excited to embark on a new chapter of collaborative engagement with the implementation of the University Council. As mentioned in my April 1 newsletter, this group will be a powerful forum for broad discussion and input on University-wide matters. The University Council will be comprised of the areas you see in this graphic. The University Council is scheduled to meet on Thursday, May 12 from 12 – 1:30 p.m.  

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The University Council is an advisory body designed to develop, nurture and facilitate collaborative, innovative, inclusive and transparent input and dialogue on University-wide matters. The guiding focus of this group is WesternU's mission, vision and its commitment to the academic success of WesternU students.

21 Constituents

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In my campus message on April 18, I announced the appointment of Paula Crone, DO ’92, as Interim Provost and Chief Academic Officer, effective April 22, 2022. She will serve in this capacity pending the conclusion of the national search for the permanent Provost and Chief Academic Officer and their onboarding.

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To ensure immediate compliance with accreditation and operational requirements, the University, in consultation with the Chair of Academic Senate and the Board of Trustees, has identified David Connett, DO ’84, currently serving as COMP Vice Dean, to temporarily serve as the Acting Dean of COMP and COMP-Northwest effective April 22, 2022, pending the conclusion of the Interim Provost appointment. My most sincere thanks to Dr. Crone and Dr. Connett for stepping in to assist during this time of transition.

WesternU Oregon

Murdock Trust Grant

Building on the momentum of the 22.5-million-dollar donation from FamilyCare, Inc. announced last month to expand the COMP-Northwest campus and launch a behavioral health college in Lebanon, Oregon, CHS-Northwest is following suit. CHS-Northwest received a $673,000 grant from the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust of Vancouver, Washington, to support its physical therapy (PT) and occupational therapy (OT) programs in Lebanon, Oregon. The funding will help CHS-Northwest provide hands-on educational opportunities through authentic learning experiences and provide health care services to rural and underserved communities.

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My Listening & Learning Tour continued this past month with in-person and online visits with faculty, staff, and students. I was particularly taken at the level of enthusiasm I encountered while sharing my vision for the University. Together, we will make tremendous progress over the years to come.



It was also my distinct pleasure to connect with our Pomona community. In a meeting with Elizabeth Zamora, our Board of Trustees Chair, and Tim Sandoval, the Mayor of Pomona, we discussed potential collaboration between the University and the City. The very next day, Elizabeth Zamora and I met with state Sen. Connie Leyva in her district office at Mission Promenade in downtown Pomona.

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My busy community engagement schedule continued, including appearances at area business and education events. I had the pleasure to speak briefly at the Pomona Chamber of Commerce’s annual Legislative Luncheon, sharing some of my vision for the University. WesternU was the premier sponsor for the luncheon, and several WesternU staff were guests at the WesternU table. Elizabeth Zamora and WesternU Board of Trustees Secretary John Forbing also were in attendance. 

And finally, I had the pleasure to be joined by several WesternU staff at the University of La Verne’s annual Scholarship Gala on the University of La Verne campus, where I had the distinct honor to discuss opportunities with University of La Verne President Devorah Lieberman, PhD.

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In closing, I remain in awe of the resiliency shown by our students, faculty, and staff as together we have persevered through this pandemic, we have watched our students succeed under unprecedented challenges, and now make preparations for most memorable Commencement ceremonies in Pomona and in Lebanon. I wish you the very best as together we close out this academic year and prepare to celebrate with our graduates and families. 

My very kindest regards, 

Dr. Robin Farias-Eisner

Office of the President

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