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UW’s Alan Buss and Peter Moran Named School Directors in College of Education

February 3, 2020
Alan Buss and Peter Moran

The University of Wyoming College of Education has named Professor Alan Buss as the director of the School of Teacher Education and Professor Peter Moran as the director of the School of Counseling, Leadership, Advocacy and Design (CLAD). They will assume these roles in July and serve for four years.

School directors, the administrative equivalent of a department head for larger units, assume the day-to-day responsibilities of supporting the faculty and students of each school. These tasks include: budgeting; course scheduling; faculty evaluation; tenure and promotion; program improvement and revision; and, most importantly, making sure that the college is preparing highly effective educators.

“I am happy to serve in this role, because I love working with students who want to succeed, with faculty who want to be a force for good in this world, and with fantastic staff and colleagues. It will be an opportunity and challenge to grow, give and serve,” Buss says.

“It is a great privilege to serve in this role, and I am pleased to be in a position where I can support our faculty and students, and promote the teaching, research and service mission of the institution,” Moran says.

Former School of Teacher Education Director Leslie Rush and former School of CLAD Director Suzanne Young will continue in their roles as associate deans of their respective schools.

“The School of Teacher Education, under the leadership of Dr. Leslie Rush, is in the midst of multiple program revisions, updates and improvements. These revisions will enable us to better prepare teachers for their future classrooms,” Buss says. “The path is set for the next five years to implement these major changes and to integrate innovations stemming from the Trustees Education Initiative (TEI).”

“The School of Counseling, Leadership, Advocacy and Design is a healthy and vibrant unit, and that is a great credit to the faculty and the previous leadership of the school. I hope to sustain that work and cultivate continued growth,” Moran says. “The school prepares professionals who provide critical services to the state. I think that TEI can help expand the accessibility of several of our programs, increase their enrollment numbers and develop new program options.” 

In 2016, the college explored and ultimately decided to initiate a two-school administrative structure to meet budgetary constraints. At the time, Rush and Young, who were serving as associate deans, stepped up to additionally serve in the role of school directors for the School of Teacher Education and the School of CLAD, respectively.

It was agreed that the new school structure would be revisited after two years to ensure feasibility into the future. In 2019, a survey was circulated, and discussions were held to determine the efficiency of the current dual-role structure.

“Current administration felt that the workload was too much for the associate deans, and faculty concurred that there needs to be a full-time administrator of each school,” says College of Education Dean Ray Reutzel. “We believe this will allow systematic and regular attention to the needs of the schools, which could only receive part-time attention with the school director and associate dean roles combined.”

Buss is a UW alumnus with connections dating back to 1995 as a doctoral student. A full-time faculty member since 1997, he served as head of the Department of Elementary and Early Childhood Education for eight years. His other roles in the college include: chair of the college Tenure and Promotion Committee; faculty senator; chair of the UW Academic Information Technology Committee; chair of the UW Mobile Computing Initiative Task Force; member of the TEI Governing Board; and member of the Science Initiative Leadership Team.

Moran also is a UW graduate, earning B.A. degrees in elementary education and history in 1987. He has been a College of Education faculty member in elementary education since 2001. During his tenure at UW, he served as chair of the Department of Elementary and Early Childhood Education for six years and coordinator of Department of Curriculum and Instruction graduate programs for six years.

“Alan Buss and Peter Moran have had previous experience as heads of the former Department of Elementary and Early Childhood Education for many years. Consequently, these two have the requisite temperament and skill set to lead the two new schools, which are essentially replacement structures for four former departments,” Reutzel says.

This split in duties will help streamline the administrative functions at each school by permitting each position to focus on its individual responsibilities and allow the College of Education to better serve students, faculty and staff, Reutzel says.

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