Though they have interviewed a number of qualified individuals during the last several months, members of the search committee for a new School of Nursing dean have not yet narrowed down the list of possible candidates, Deputy Provost for Biomedical and Health Affairs Stephanie Spangler said.

Spangler, who leads the search, said a broader range of nursing school and University faculty will assist the committee in interviewing those candidates who are most serious about applying for the position in the coming weeks. For now, she said, the search committee continues to conduct interviews.

“I’m very hopeful. There has been a lot of interest, and we have gone through many names,” Spangler said. “We’ve certainly seen a diversity of candidates and a lot of talent here.”

She said some individuals being considered for the position have not guaranteed they would accept an offer from the University and are using the interview process as an opportunity to better acquaint themselves with Yale.

The committee intends to have a new dean appointed by September, Spangler said.

“We haven’t officially put a date on anything,” she said. “But the sooner the better, of course.”

It is not clear when the committee will announce the new dean, Spangler said, as the specific timing will depend on the candidates’ schedules and how easy it would be for them to assume their duties on short notice.

The 10-member search committee includes five nursing school faculty members — Kathleen Knafl, Judith Krauss, Heather Reynolds, Marjorie Funk and Gail Melkus — and three School of Medicine faculty.

Katherine Jones, the interim dean of the School of Nursing, is not a candidate for the permanent position, and said she has been assisting in the interview process, having met with candidates and search consultants. She said the majority of candidates she has spoken with are qualified and promising.

Jones said she has worked this year to keep the school on track for changes the permanent dean will be charged with executing.

“I have focused much this year on maintaining the momentum of the school in terms of scholarship, seeking external research grants and reviewing the curriculum,” she said. “We have just appointed a task force to see what revisions should be made to the curriculum … next year.”

The new dean will have the responsibility of implementing a new masters degree program to be launched at the school in January 2006, Jones said. The program will focus on nursing management policy and leadership, she said, and will include more computer-based education and weekend intensive schedules geared toward individuals who are already registered nurses.

Once a permanent dean is appointed, Jones will return to teaching at the nursing school.

“I’ve been busy learning a lot about Yale and the School of Nursing,” Jones said. “But I do look forward to returning to my professorial role.”

Members of the search committee for a new dean of the School of Public Health and chair of the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, which began in February, have also made progress, School of Medicine Dean Robert Alpern said.

“They are assessing the state of the department and accumulating names of candidates,” he said. “There is no shortlist yet.”

Alpern said the committee has not begun interviewing candidates, and it is unlikely that the positions will be filled by September.

The search committee members are Dr. Michael Cappello, Dr. David Coleman, Dr. Dan DiMaio, Theodore Holford, Dr. Margaret Hostetter, Dr. Amy Justice, Edward Kaplan, Dr. Robert Rosenheck, Nancy Ruddle, Dr. Julie Ann Sosa and John Wargo.