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Former academic vice president to serve as interim head of Framingham State

Robert A. Martin, former Framingham State University vice president for academic affairs, will take over as interim president in mid-August, the university announced on Monday.

Martin was appointed by the university’s board of trustees to take over for Timothy J. Flanagan, who will be leaving to serve as president of Illinois State University.

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“Dr. Martin is a well-known and highly respected member of the FSU community,” said board chairman Joe Burchill, in a written statement. “We have full confidence that he will do an excellent job leading the institution while a nationwide search is conducted for the next permanent president.”

Martin served as vice president for academic affairs at Framingham State from 2004 until his retirement in 2010, according to the university. Since then, he has served as an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Psychology and Philosophy.

Flanagan stated that Martin “has intimate knowledge of the university’s academic programs and is held in high regard by our faculty and staff. This makes him uniquely qualified to lead the institution during this transitional period.”

Over the next year, Martin will be overseeing Framingham State’s 10-year reaccreditation through the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, as well as preparing for the university’s 175th anniversary.

“I’m taking over at a time when the institution is in really good shape,” Martin said in a statement. “The faculty and staff are very committed to the university and there are a lot of really talented individuals here. A lot of work has been done in terms of strategic planning. I take that work to be a good road map of the destinations that the college wants to get to. I hope to help us continue to move toward those destinations.”

Robert A. Martin, is ‘uniquely qualified to lead the institution during this transitional period.’

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Martin holds a bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan University, and a master’s degree and doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Rochester. His prorated annual salary will be $210,000, according to university spokesman Dan Magazu.

According to Framingham State, Martin, as a vice president, was instrumental in the creation of the Center for Excellence in Learning, Teaching, Scholarship and Service, which supports the professional development, research, and creative activities of the faculty. He also oversaw the creation of several new graduate and undergraduate academic programs in the areas of business and information technology, business administration, environmental science, criminology, STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) education, and nursing.

“While I was here we were able to develop and launch five or six new major programs at the undergraduate and graduate level that helped broaden the university’s offerings and open FSU up to new populations of students,” Martin said. “The faculty and staff I worked with here played a major role in that.”

He also furthered the assessment of student learning in academic programs and established the First-Year Foundations Program, which supports the academic and social transition of first-year students, according to the university.

According to Magazu, a search committee will be formed this month to look for a permanent replacement. The goal is to have a candidate selected by the end of the fall semester.

Magazu said Martin will not be a candidate for the permanent job. Martin is not interested in the position, he said, and the state Department of High Education does not allow the interim president to be considered for the permanent position.

John Swinconeck can be reached at johnswinc@gmail.com.
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