Truman welcomes new faculty and staff

Truman State University has added 18 full-time faculty, 12 part-time faculty and 10 staff members, as of Jul. 24. 

For the new full-time faculty there are three new hires in the School of Arts and Letters, four in the School of Business, two for the School of Health Science and Education, four for the School of Science and Mathematics and five for the School of Social & Cultural Studies. 

All new faculty contracts started Aug. 12. 

Janet Gooch, executive vice president for academic affairs & provost, said the number of new faculty is similar to past years, however; the University had some late resignations which left a few unfilled positions. 

Gooch said she did not want to point out the departments that had the late resignations. 

“There are a few open positions that are left open so there may be some departments that some faculty may be teaching an extra course or maybe not offer a certain elective course,” Gooch said. “In most cases … the faculty hires have been very strategic and they are gonna serve the institution well and we will not have any major areas or gaps from the positions we haven’t been able to hire.”

All new faculty participate in an orientation Aug. 12-13, Gooch said, where the faculty get to know different aspects of Truman and their new positions.

In the latter part of that week there are activities for new and current faculty, like the opening assembly and strategic planning and assessment workshop. Gooch said those days are an opportunity for new faculty to meet, network and develop relationships with existing faculty.

The new faculty are in orientation the same week Truman Days begins, Gooch said, so they also get a chance to meet new students as well. 

“New faculty are such an asset to the University,” Gooch said. “They bring a whole new perspective and new energy. It’s really just a great opportunity for Truman to have a really good cohort of new faculty and I’m looking forward to having them on campus.” 

Sally Herleth, executive director of Human Resources, said in an email statement that Truman has hired a few more new faculty this year than last. Herleth said that most hires have been due to retirements and resignations. 

Herleth said staff positions tend to be filled each month and new staff hires have also remained fairly consistent. 

Taylor Athon, admissions counselor and a new staff hire, was hired in May and started July 1st. Athon just graduated from Truman in 2019 as a Business Administration major with a concentration in marketing. 

Athon is a traveling admissions counselor, where 16 weeks out of the year she will be traveling to various high schools in central and southern Missouri to recruit students. When Athon is in town she will help with campus visits. 

Since she just graduated, Athon has the credibility to talk to prospective students and share her personal experiences. 

“My whole time at Truman was preparing for this job,” Athon said.