Servant leadership major focus for Arts & Sciences dean applicant

“I would first buy season basketball tickets and show my pride,” Michael Zavada, Ph.D., said, if he were selected as the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

Zavada, chairman of biological sciences at Eastern Tennessee State University, visited Seton Hall on Jan. 27 to speak with faculty and students as part of his job interview.

He told faculty and students he applied for the position because he wants to better the university.

“I agree with the mission of the University and the idea of being a servant leader,” Zavada said. “Seton Hall consists of many positive student and faculty leaders, and I would like to enrich the University’s environment.”

In his application, Zavada said his basic principles of management are evaluating individual strengths and weaknesses. He also advocates honesty and openness.

As a dean, he would ensure every department has an active role in setting the college agenda, mission and strategic plan, Zavada said.

He also said he believes college is the last time students have to be young, and Seton Hall’s Catholic mission helps.

Zavada said he believes college is a student’s opportunity in life to explore the great things in society, and realize what one has to offer to the world.

“I would help Seton Hall market itself,” Zavada said. “There are many mediums in which we can do so, including newspapers, television and WSOU.”

In his application, Zavada said it is best for students to take classes in a wide range of areas.

“It is more important than ever to be committed to a liberal education that encompasses a global perspective and fosters a love of learning and an intellectualism that attempts to solve the important problems of our world community,” Zavada wrote.

Zavada received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in botany at Arizona State University. He also received a bachelor’s degree in slavic languages and literature, and a doctorate in ecology from The University of Connecticut.

He has previously worked at Providence College, The University of Louisiana and the University of the Witwatersrand, in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Kathryn Moran can be reached at

Author: Staff Writer

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