BYU professor picked as UVU president

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  • professor
    March 12, 2009 5:02 p.m.

    Maryland Univerity president search in the Chronicle:The successful candidate must have an earned doctorate or appropriate terminal degree and a successful record of significant administrative leadership experience in higher education coupled with academic experience that qualify him/her for appointment to the tenured faculty. Preferred candidates should have demonstrated visionary leadership skills and significant management experience.

  • professor
    March 11, 2009 6:37 p.m.

    Check the chronicle. Presidents are required to have experience to be qualified for aposition. Holland didn't. Good ole' boys network.

  • to "why go to Duke"
    March 11, 2009 2:48 p.m.

    Utah is a young culture so what still matters is money, image, and surnames. Also, if one is truly interested in higher education they don't get it all in one school or culture.

  • Navajo Joe
    March 10, 2009 8:05 p.m.

    BYU?? There goes UVU!

  • student
    March 10, 2009 3:30 p.m.

    It is exciting. I know a couple of board members and they are outstanding deliberate people, who are very successful in their both vast and broad experience. I would suggest that Matt is the best choice. I know Dr. Jack Christianson and know he would readily bow to the choice, as he well-accomplished and yet not in any way a power-hungry person. He did things at the Orem Institute that no one has every done before, adn may not in the future. It's not the same without him. So, he is a stellar man. Matt will water this university and you and all of us will watch it grow. Go Matt. Go UVU!

  • endofparalysis
    March 9, 2009 5:07 p.m.

    Congrats to Dr. Holland! I have no doubt he will be absolutely fabulous! Good things are in store for UVU with him at the head! I'm excited to see the progress the school will make in these next years! I hope the community will put aside their trite differences and controversial arguments to stand behind such a great leader! Good luck Dr. Holland!

  • RE: To Anonymous
    March 9, 2009 8:46 a.m.

    Those questioning the regents decision may not have attended UVU, but we are tax payers so we have the right to questions our officials. Oh I apologize to the LDS faithful, you have NO right to question your leaders.

  • To Anonymous
    March 9, 2009 6:41 a.m.

    First of all. What's UVA? You must mean UVU; at least get the school initials correct. Do you even go to UVU? Probably not, so STOP complaining. I go to UVU and I am excited for President Holland. They hired him because he was qualified, so I'm sorry that you cannot see that and must remain in your own delusional world.

  • Anonymous
    March 8, 2009 5:06 p.m.

    Like I said in an earlier post that the DN refused to post, the head of the search committee is a family friend of the Hollands. That made all the difference in someone as inexperienced as Holland getting this job. It takes more than a PhD to do this position. The president has to fundraise, settle personnel disputes, manage a large budget, and many other things. Let's call it for what it is: The Regents gave Holland the job because of his family name. They took a chance on a rookie. But the fact is, UVA needs to raise money and with his family name he might be the best man for the job.

  • To Embarrassed
    March 8, 2009 12:37 p.m.

    Re: " I'm sure he is a good guy and will do just fine in the position, but the point is that the most qualified and able person did not get the job! Shame!!"

    I currently live out east and work for one of the world's largest corporations. One thing I can tell you is that academic degrees, age, and experience are only a small part of the leaderhship equation (though the establishment sometimes behaves otherwise). We have a number of leaders here at our company who are promoted at very young ages to positions well beyond their experience level. And most of them succeed, not because of where they went to school or their previous positions, but becasue they know how to build and execute a vision. They know how to ask question, listen, seek experienced advise, and then formulate a path forward. They are generally great communicators, and many come from families where leadership has been modeled. They know how to deal with the spotlight and pressure without losing their effectiveness.

    I have known Matt (and Page) for many years. They both will be great.

  • Get your facts straight
    March 8, 2009 1:14 a.m.

    Better than Obama,

    "My guess is that most of those complaining about Matt's appointment voted for Barack Obama---who has absolutely no executive experience."

    First, I'm not complaining about Holland and I voted for Obama. Second, Obama had executive experience as President of the Harvard Law Review and as Director of several non-profits.

    "He has at least as much (if not more)experience relative to this new position than does Barack Obama relative to being the president of the United States."

    Both Holland and Obama have the experience necessary for their respective positions. In fact, Dr. Holland almost has enough experience to be President of the United States and not just President of UVU. I would probably vote for him even though he's a Republican.

  • Better than Obama
    March 7, 2009 11:41 p.m.

    My guess is that most of those complaining about Matt's appointment voted for Barack Obama---who has absolutely no executive experience. Yet, they voted for Obama......mostly for his looks,his speaking ability, etc. So don't be so sanctimonious in your condemnation of Matt Holland. He has at least as much (if not more)experience relative to this new position than does Barack Obama relative to being the president of the United States. I know Matt personally, and he will do a superb job! Excellent choice!

  • Norm Wright
    March 7, 2009 9:51 p.m.

    Good luck to you Matt. I am confident that you will do a great job.

  • Re No Comparison
    March 7, 2009 9:38 p.m.

    Re No Comparison: you are missing the point, which is there is no basis for the analogy. Holland was not experienced; whereas, Obama was experienced. You cannot simply posit an analogy without thought to the predicate.

  • Rebecca Holmes
    March 7, 2009 9:32 p.m.

    This is a great calling for President Holland. I this his values and integrity as a member of the church will help put UVU on the map. This was a good choice by the church, I wish him luck.

  • UVU Student
    March 7, 2009 9:00 p.m.

    As a student at UVU I am very excited for our new president. For all you haters of Holland, STOP complaining. You don't go to UVU so you have no right to bash on our new president.

  • A long-time acquaintance
    March 7, 2009 8:37 p.m.

    Having know Matt Holland a long time, I can confidently say that he is a great choice. I know a lot of people with more experience and credentials, but none would do as good job as he.

    I am very optimistic about what this choice means for my children's higher education.

  • Trust the BoR
    March 7, 2009 8:35 p.m.

    The Board of Regents are not dummies. They have every reason to want who they feel is best.

    Being a department chair is highly overrated. Department chairs do not run budgets. They represent the department in larger meetings.

    Each candidate had a chance to put their best foot forward. Sometimes, the ones who have the best new ideas are the best candidates. Give him some time and we will see.

  • Chat about sports or religion
    March 7, 2009 8:35 p.m.

    To: Re: UVSC Alum

    "What, only an LDS person is honest? Get Real. There are many good people out there, just look outside the box."

    It doesn't hurt that he is LDS since those he will be working with on the community, state and federal level will most likely be LDS. His religion may help him get past many of the barriers University President's face when dealing with community and state leaders.

    While it isn't absolutely necessary it would be a great help to him in his new role. This may offend a lot of people but it is essential that the President is able to get along with or have something in common with those he will be working with. If that is his religion I have no problem with it. It could be a shared interest in basketball, approximate age or even having attended the same university.

    A University President will set a vision for the University and he will have to get people to support that vision. If what they chit-chat about before he panders to them is religion than so be it but the chit-chat is necessary.

  • President's arent administrators
    March 7, 2009 8:28 p.m.

    I think the tv is in focus now,

    "Too bad you didn't get an experience person, who could have at least been a chairman or a head of department for a year or two."

    Where do you people come up with this stuff? There is absolutely no basis in the belief that Presidents of Universities should be administrators before they become University President's. Every University has its administrators. Adding one more would do no good and would probably distract from the real role of a University President which is primarily focused on the community outside of the University.

    There are many talented people who perform the day to day operations of a University and the President is at the head. He sets general policy which is then implemented by University administrators.

    He sets the vision for the University and works with community and state leaders to achieve that vision. He is rarely focused on the day to day operations of the University.

    The office of the President of UVU includes an Executive Director of Planning and Budget, Internal Auditor, an Assistant for Federal Relations and an Assistant for Constituent Relations and receptionists. Do you see his role?

  • Re: UVSC Alum
    March 7, 2009 8:23 p.m.

    What, only an LDS person is honest? Get Real. There are many good people out there, just look outside the box.

  • Holland is more than qualified
    March 7, 2009 8:19 p.m.

    Here is a list of qualifications necessary in a University President.

    1. Experience in the classroom at the university level.

    2. A Ph.D. degree or an equivalent degree as one indicator of their ability to lead.

    3. A record of scholarly or creative achievement, to ensure an understanding of the importance of faculty and student research to the learning process.

    4. Excellent written and verbal communication skills including published works.

    5. A vision of what the University should be and the future direction of the University.

    6.Strong interpersonal skills and an analytical mind which should be demonstrated in both their written and verbal communication.

    There are many others yet it is important to bear in mind that administrative experience is never high on the list of qualifications for a President since all Universities have a lot of administrators and its not the primary role of a University President. If we look at Dr. Holland's experience and compare it to the qualifications set by any Board of Regents in any state it would always include a long list of the necessary qualities but it would rarely focus on the need for an administrator.

  • UVSC Alum
    March 7, 2009 8:10 p.m.

    An LDS man is right for the job. I welcome the hire and look foward to the honesty and integrity only a member of the church can provide.

  • You are showing your ignorance
    March 7, 2009 8:04 p.m.

    Religion not factor,

    "Holland's religion is not the issue. The issue is that his experience is either being downplayed by the media or the regents are taking a major risk on him."

    The media is downplaying his experience and aren't telling people what is required in a University President. They are also failing to mention that he has all of the qualities necessary for a President.

    "He may turn out to be a great president, but his experience now is very minimal. BYU is not run like UVU when it comes to funding. Working for Mike Leavitt is not leading a university. I'll give him a chance, but he needs to get rid of my doubts on his inexperience quickly."

    He doesn't need to do any such thing. Your failure to understand what is needed in a President is shown by your comment about "funding." Please tell us what your list of experiences would include so I can tear it apart which would be easy since you focus way to much on administrative experience when 90+ percent of University Presidents aren't and shouldn't be administrators before becoming President.

  • Holland is more than qualified
    March 7, 2009 8:00 p.m.

    J Mil,

    "I don't think anyone who wasn't involved in the interviews and hiring process has any ground to say that he isn't as qualified as the other choices. That's why they do interviews and not just look at resumes. That's all we have to go on is what we know of their resumes. Those who made the choice has much more than that."

    People fail to understand what is necessary in a good President. If I had to choose between someone who had a Ph.D. in political science or someone who had a Ph.D. in business administration I would choose the Ph.D. in political science as the President of a University and the Ph.D. in business administration as a Vice President or Dean. If I had to choose between a Ph.D. in political science who had limited management experience and one without any management experience I would choose the Ph.D. in political science over the Ph.D. in political science without any management experience. If I had to choose between a Ph.D. in political science with management experience and published works over one without. Guess who? Holland

  • Karl
    March 7, 2009 7:57 p.m.

    To some of us who have watched Matt Holland grow it may be difficult to see a teenage boy transform so quickly into a giant of a man. There is more behind this man than his family name. To the doomsayers: Matt will win you over with his personal warmth, wit and humility; his ability to communicate, his genuine personal interest with those with whom he works.

  • Learn what is necessary before
    March 7, 2009 7:56 p.m.

    stephen l.,

    "This guy is not qualified to be the president of a major institution. He has a PhD in poli sci and has just been a teacher at the Y. The board picked him because of his dad. It is sad because the other two candidates where more qualified. I guess he will keep UVU on the straight and narrow though."

    How offensive to the man and his lifetime of effort. He has earned his position and it is sick that you would bring his father into this. If he was anyone else son everyone would acknowledge that he has the experience and qualities to be the President of any University in this country (Bill Sederburg had less experience as an administrator when he became the President of Ferris State University in Michigan than Holland has now).

    The other candidates weren't more qualified. They were specialists. Holland not only had the academic credentials but also the political and management credentials that the other two didn't possess. Had Holland simply specialized he would have been a VP or Dean at BYU by now but Deans and VP shouldn't necessarily become Presidents. In fact, most don't.

  • Want an administrator. Get a VP
    March 7, 2009 7:51 p.m.

    Embarrassment for Utah,

    "The state of Utah should be embarrassed today for the good old boy network is on full display. Rather than selecting a president based upon merit the regents went for cronyism."

    Holland met every single one of the criteria set by the Board of Regents before he was selected. He had the perfect mix of experience. University Presidents aren't administrators. The combination of political experience, academic credentials and his management experience made him the right fit.

    "I'm sure he is a good guy and will do just fine in the position, but the point is that the most qualified and able person did not get the job! Shame!!"

    Who would that be? Please tell us! Someone with only administrative experience? I guess a President does it all himself. The Vice Presidents and every other administrator at the University would be at a total loss and unable to do anything if it wasn't for the President.

    If the Board of Regents wanted an administrator they would have chosen a person for a Vice President.

    The other candidates didn't possess all the required qualities. It's shocking that you don't understand that.

  • Ben Brooks
    March 7, 2009 6:43 p.m.

    Im surprised by UVUs choice of Matt Holland, despite his strengths. I have worked with Matt. I know him as a bright, effective teacher and a dynamic personality. I like him, and I believe he is a good man. But his background speaks more of potential accomplishment than the actual accomplishment that you typically expect in a university president. He has very minimal experience in academic administration. He has not been teaching long enough to have gained a full professorship. His work as a scholar, both in quality and quantity, is best described as promising rather than stellar. I can see no reason to select him for this position other than what must have been an extremely impressive performance in the interview process.

    There is nothing wrong with promise and potential, and Matt Holland has lots of both. We just need to recognize that UVU is taking a significant risk by relying so heavily on potential instead of a solid record of administrative leadership.

    UVU is a large university with an increasingly valuable place in our community, so the stakes are high. Both UVU and Dr. Holland have my best wishes for the success of their experiment.

  • I think the tv is in focus now
    March 7, 2009 6:39 p.m.

    Let's see: mediocre school, 27,000 students, only 2 masters programs, is in the shadow of the U and the Y, and has had its budgets cut cut cut.

    So you select someone with inside power, really inside the old belt way. A guy who has worked with the governor, and whose dad is a power in the Mormon church.

    Good choice. Too bad you didn't get an experience person, who could have at least been a chairman or a head of department for a year or two.

    But given his inside connections, he will do well. He will also leave the univ. in 5-6 years to run for political office. Might even make it too.
    It is in the cards for the oligarchy that runs the state and its dominant religion. Holland will be in congress before ten years is up.

  • Re: Reasoner
    March 7, 2009 6:19 p.m.

    How old was Pres. Monson when he was called to be a bishop, again? 22?

    Experience is one factor among many that should be considered. Sometimes experience is helpful, other times it is simply a synonym for being set in one's ways.

  • Roberto
    March 7, 2009 6:06 p.m.

    You who poo poo this choice of choosing Dr. Holland because of his lack of experiance need to remember that this country elected a president who had even less experiance to lead. I believe that UVU will be O.K.. We Do need to pray for the country thogh!

  • oracle
    March 7, 2009 6:01 p.m.

    Best of success to Dr. Holland.

  • to "why go to Duke"
    March 7, 2009 5:42 p.m.

    A person who attends a Utah school - such as BYU - needs to get their advanced degrees at another school to ever be considered to teach or work in the administration at the school of their undergrad. As far as I know, all schools work this way. They do not want inbred students. Every professor I had at BYU told me that if I received my Masters at BYU, I would never be considered teach there as well. It's not a pride thing - although I would hope to be taught by professors that had seen more of the world than just one state.

  • Victor
    March 7, 2009 5:23 p.m.

    A lot of the respondents are missing an important point of the selection process. President Holland indicated that one of his most important responsibilites will be to increase funding through a capital campaign. Most university presidents spend the majority of their time raising money for their institution. They are the figurehead, many times the best one to ask for a donation.

    If the university is solvent or has increased it's
    endowment, then it can move forward, improve, and serve the studentbody better. President Holland has contacts that should serve him and the university well in that regard.

    Additionally, he has the naysayers to prove wrong and that should be a lot of added incentive. Best wishes of success to the new President!

  • Reasoner
    March 7, 2009 4:53 p.m.

    Robots? who said anything about robots? Experience begets wisdom. Lack of experience will lead to mistakes that an experienced person would not make. Experience is to be valued in any leadership role - there's a reason why the next bishop in a ward won't come from the teachers quorum or that it was the longest serving apostle became the president of the church: experience. Maybe he turns out okay, but there is no reason to be blindly optimistic either.

  • Grad Student who left UT
    March 7, 2009 4:53 p.m.

    I find the previous comments about why some leave Utah for graduate education extremely irrational--and I applaud and echo those who have refuted them already.
    To their comments I add:
    Who ever said people wanted to leave? Have you ever considered that Utah has one of the highest graduate-degree applicants per capita in the nation--so much that the state's grad schools could never accommodate us all. I am a medical/grad student outside of Utah, but that doesn't mean I can't return some day and maybe teach students with loyalty and passion for this state. Are you serious? Sometimes you just have to go where your family will benefit most, even if that takes you out of state.
    It would do you a lot of good to think more clearly about things before posting such nonsense. There are many more factors in choosing a place for higher education than you obviously understand. Give me a break.

  • Reality
    March 7, 2009 4:50 p.m.

    The reality is that UNC will beat the tar out of Duke on Sunday. So there.

  • A more concerned UVU student
    March 7, 2009 4:49 p.m.

    Yesterday morning, i was one of the few students that interviewed all three candidates. I sat in a room for 45 minutes with each of them. There is not a group of people at UVU that bleed green more than my friends and I in the room. I must say, that President Holland won us over immediately. If you nay sayers were in the room with us, you would be eating your words right now. Sure the other other candidates might have looked good on paper, but he had us eating out of the palm of his hand. We loved the other candidates as well, especially jack christianson, being a personal friend of most of us. But i have no doubt that the university is not in good hands, but great hands.

    i spent hours with president sederburg, and am extremely grateful for the efforts he made, but i will echo sedeburg's words in saying that he probably will make sederburg look bad.

  • Re: No Comparison
    March 7, 2009 4:35 p.m.

    You seem to have difficulty grasping the concept of analogy - there would be no comparison if Holland had just been appointed President of the United States of America rather than of UVU.

    If he had just been made president of the U.S. then, yes, he would be absurdly under qualified and there would be no comparison.

    As it stands, however, the analogy is quite legitimate. Obama is relatively inexperienced for a U.S. President, Holland is relatively inexperienced for a newly elected university president.

    It is a basic SAT question: "Holland is to the presidency of Utah Valley University what Obama is to the presidency of ______?"

    The question is not, "Who is more qualified to be president of ANY organization, Barack Obama or Matt Holland?"

  • DrJimemac
    March 7, 2009 4:34 p.m.

    I known Dr. Holland for almost 25 years and have watched him progress in his academic career. He is by far one of the most gifted and talented people that I know. He mind is on par with his father's which many would agree to be the best that BYU has had in its presidency. But everyone in these previous postings is missing his biggest asset of all. That being his wife Paige. She can walk into a room full of strangers and make everyone of them feel as if she has known them their entire life. She will have to represent with Matt UVU and both of them will be fantastic. Not to sound cliche' but she truly completes him. UVU, you have knocked one out of the park with this choice. Only as time moves on, you will understand the greatness in this choice of both of them. BYU has lost an incredible mind and professor in Dr. Holland and UVU has gained a treasure. Good luck to the both of you and to the future of UVU.

  • Anonymous
    March 7, 2009 4:33 p.m.

    Let's take away Dr. Holland's last name for a minute and ask this question. If his name was Dr. no name, would he have even gotten a look, let alone an interview? I mean, c'mon, really, please don't defend him on his experience. His name carried the day.

  • Johan
    March 7, 2009 4:29 p.m.

    I for one am glad an LDS member got the post. Morals and values will carry this university to the next level. Brother Matthew will do a very good job and we should be proud that he will represent this calling very well.

  • No Comparison
    March 7, 2009 2:33 p.m.

    The comparisons in several of these comments between Obama's and Holland's rspective "experience" are humerous. Obama was a U.S. Senator and, when he was in academia, he was a law professor at Chicago, an elite law school. He may be young, but his experiences clearly evidence a capacity beyond his age. Holland was an associate professor at BYU, a fine university, but not in the same league. Sorry, there simply is no comparison.

  • John Pack Lambert
    March 7, 2009 1:27 p.m.

    Here in Michigan we are lucky if the professors and presidents at our major universities have ever even set foot in the state before interviewing for their positions.
    If you were to attack someone who got their bachelors degree in the state and has spent there entire academic career in the state for having gotten a Ph.D. in another state here in Michigan we would laugh you out of existence, and we have at least five schools on the level of Utah's top three.

  • Re: Reasoner
    March 7, 2009 1:17 p.m.

    Heaven forbid that someone make any missteps! What we need are robots in leadership positions that are totally incapable of taking a wrong step!

    Of course that might involve sacrificing something with regard to innovation, creativity, vision, intuition, dynamism and all the other qualities that we generally associate with leadership. But its worth it right, knowing that things are safely being managed with precision and without the slightest chance of accidentally doing something worthwhile.

    Yep, a highly experienced robot; that's exactly what UVU should have chosen.

  • Duh
    March 7, 2009 12:55 p.m.

    why go to Duke?

    People have to go to Duke, Yale, etc. because that is where the best programs are. Utah has only three universities with major graduate programs. They cannot have the best programs in every discipline, and it would be foolish to go to graduate school but to choose not to go to the best school you could. Going to a university outside of Utah has nothing to do with need to come back to Utah "to tech the rest of us about the 'real world.'" Don't be so quick to pass judgment.

  • Future is bright
    March 7, 2009 12:52 p.m.

    Can't wait to see where you take the University Dr. Holland! You are a great man, a great people person and I have tremendous respect for you. Best of luck!

  • RMG
    March 7, 2009 12:19 p.m.

    It looks like there is one less place for unhappy BYU professors to land.

  • UVU is great place
    March 7, 2009 12:12 p.m.

    Last I heard 27 percent of our country has a college degree; I wish I could wave a magic wand and move that up to 70 or 80 percent; maybe we are moving there slowly and surely----we can only hope, and by keeping college debt as low as possible. I think Holland and Benson are great people and will do wonders for higher education in the future, but they would also be great elementary school principals, great 6th grade teachers, great coaches in high school blessing thousands of lives there as well. They know as well as anyone that elementary and high school are probably more important than college and so eventually in the long term future they will try the secondary school level which I am sure they also have a passion for (but with a little less pay and pizzazz and media.) Or if that isn't their preference, maybe a second career would be to start their own business and invent a product and manufacture a technological device that will get an industry and economy moving in the real hard nose business world.

  • Excellent Choice
    March 7, 2009 12:03 p.m.

    As my neighbors for the past several years, I can only say that we have the highest regard and confidence in the newly selected President of UVU and his Chief of Staff and their children. Demographics
    indicate a great challenge to accommodate an increasing number of high school graduates who would prefer to obtain a higher education in this area, which the present facilities and competition do not permit. Good luck to President Holland in addressing this need along with the tough budgetary decisions that must be made in the current economic malaise.

  • NY
    March 7, 2009 11:52 a.m.

    What a shock. Was there ever any doubt?

  • Ignorant
    March 7, 2009 11:12 a.m.

    I can't stand ignorant people who suggest that Dr. Holland got the job because of his last name. You have no idea what the search committee was looking for, nor do you know how each of the candidates meshed with the search committee during the interview process. Contrary to what you assume, Dr. Holland is an incredibly capable individual independent of who his Dad is or what his last name is.

  • Duke and other Higher Ed Institu
    March 7, 2009 11:10 a.m.

    Believe it or not there is tremendous value in obtaining diverse views on how things work, particularily in higher education which is really quite a complex issue. People do come to the state of Utah for their higher education experience and then ruturn to another state or country to share what they learned. This is how we all learn from eachother--its education. Being narrow is learning from the same person, institution, subject without being exposed to diverse ways of thinking and doing things. Do you really think that you are so set in your views that you cannot make room and be influenced by others who see things differently? If you have a cherished religious belief that you hold dear, continue to cherish it. There is no need to feel threatened by others views. Learning from others will deeped the way you feel about your beliefs and at the same time help you to see how your beliefs can be influential.

  • Re: Why Go to Duke?
    March 7, 2009 11:05 a.m.

    The reality is that Utah has fine institutions at which to receive a bachelor's degree or even a law, business or medical degree. If you wish to do advanced study in any other field, Utah is a terrible choice. More than anything I wish I could received a great advanced education in history or political science in Utah but that simply is not the case. If one wishes to strive for academic excellence there are very few options in Utah which has mediocre programs in most fields. Do you really want kids in Utah taught by individuals who received a mediocre education in their field?? You should want the best for Utah. For the moment, at least, that means professors who receive their advanced education outside of Utah.

  • Reasoner
    March 7, 2009 10:57 a.m.

    The fact that America elected a non-qualified person to be president may well prove to be disastrous in the end. The election of Obama is not a valid reason to think that now every job no longer requires qualifications. If Holland can pull it off,good for him but no one should be surprised if there are many missteps along the way, and if, in the end, he should have waited to get some real experience before appyling for the top job at a university.

  • RE: Benson and Holland
    March 7, 2009 10:56 a.m.

    Hey thanks for giving us a chance to show you that these guys are the most qualified. It is fortunate for all those associated with UVU and SUU that a committee of qualified individuals was in charge of the hiring process rather than you.
    Both Holland and Benson had acquired the academic pedigree to lead in their respective positions. They have fewer years experience than some of the other candidates that were considered, it is true.

    But I would challenge you to tell me why quantity of experience should matter more than vision, energy and passion? Only the truly inept whose only qualification is the amount of time they've done something rather than the skill with which they have done it worry about experience to this degree. Real institutions that have an eye on the future will always prize personal attributes of the individual more than the quantity of years s/he has spent at a given task.

    This young university needs a young and vibrant leader and it has found one in Matt Holland.

    So there you go, I hope that answers your question.

  • Re: Concerned UVU Student
    March 7, 2009 10:41 a.m.

    Your concerns are legitimate, but you must understand that you've misinterpreted what "putting the brakes on" means. UVU has expanded at a very rapid rate. That means that its degree programs are a mile wide and an inch deep. Most bachelors degrees barely have the faculty to sustain them and an overly large percentage of the faculty lack PhDs. He is not saying that UVU will be frozen in time just as it is, he's saying that the university will focus on strengthening the programs already in place - it is not enough to offer bachelors degrees, they need to be excellent degrees. He is choosing to focus on quality over quantity. UVU will still expand program offerings, etc., but now the focus will be on strengthening existing programs and growing at a stable and sustainable rate.
    Mindless uncontrolled growth is a good definition of cancer, it is not a viable operating plan for a university.

  • Re: why go to Duke
    March 7, 2009 10:32 a.m.

    I don't see anything wrong with expanding our educational backgrounds outside of Utah or any other States we live in. I'm not saying that higher education in Utah is not world class. Matt Holland is going to do just fine at UVU.

  • Anonymous
    March 7, 2009 10:32 a.m.

    what a joke.

  • Another Concerned UVU Student
    March 7, 2009 10:25 a.m.

    This is to 'A Concerned UVU Student'. No problem, I'm voicing my opinion, but in support of President Holland. Your ideas are ludicrous. Yes, times are difficult and UVU is growing and developing, but I think that President Holland is the best man for the job. I don't know the guy, but I've heard great things about him. You make me laugh, no offense. He's going to break our growth? That's hilarious. How can you say such a thing, especially when you don't know him? My sister had him as a professor at BYU, and she liked him. BYU students are allowed to speak freely, I don't know why you like to spout such nonsense. Sure, it's LDS dominant and pretty conservative, but get over it. It's a private university also. Do you go to BYU? Obviously not, since you're at UVU. Speak our minds? You must mean that UVU is much more liberal than BYU. That is true. It's sad, but true. I think President Holland will do a fantastic job as our president. I'm SPEAKING OUT just to let the other UVU student know.

  • pedigree
    March 7, 2009 10:10 a.m.

    Well, Holland has the pedigree, fo sho. His dad was the best president BYU ever had. No disrespect to the other presidents, but Holland had personality, charisma, charm, intelligence, delivery, and utter sincerity in his days at the helm of the Y. If Holland the Younger has only a fraction of what his father brought to BYU, so much the better for UVU.

    Best wishes.

  • an excited UVU student
    March 7, 2009 10:02 a.m.

    Quit complaining. You say that he has no experience, Obama has no experience and yet he is President. I also see that people didn't comment on the past presidents' religions and yet they're commenting on his? That's really unfair. I'm pretty excited for President Holland. He seems to be a great guy. I'm only here at UVU for another year or so; however, I'm glad UVU chose him. The reason why people leave Utah for other schools is because the other schools tend to have higher credentials and reputation than Utah schools, especially UVU.

  • Why Duke?
    March 7, 2009 9:40 a.m.

    Why go to Duke? Or any other university outside of Utah? Well... like it or not, Utah universities are NOT at the top of the heap in terms of academic standards, research standards, and (even) football! People who go to another university and return with a passion of education in Utah have merely seen what education can really be and want to raise Utah to similar levels.

    Having sat on many search/screen committees at the University of Wisconsin, I must say that the search committees usually get it right, but the decision makers (who act on the committee's recommendations) sometimes don't (because they didn't agree with my top choice!) Nevertheless, the top candidates are all very qualified. If not, the search is scrubbed and started over again.

    Give Pres. Holland a chance.

  • Whatever!
    March 7, 2009 9:14 a.m.

    It is okay for the country to vote into office a President who has NO experience to run our nation, but when it comes to running a university you want the most qualified, experienced candidate. If you are willing to take a chance on Obama, you should be willing to take a chance on Holland. Personally, I think Holland will do a much better job than Obama at their respective jobs any day!

  • Benson and Holland, what a joke
    March 7, 2009 9:02 a.m.

    These men are good men, but NOT qualified for the leadership positions they've been hired for. This is just crazy. The church is getting itself into places it should just stay out of, before it gets itself into trouble.

    Show me that these guys were the BEST candidates for the job... didn't think so

  • seems to me
    March 7, 2009 8:28 a.m.

    Someone who knows how to negotiate political machinations would seem to have a crucial ability in leading a state-funded university.

  • Anonymous
    March 7, 2009 8:20 a.m.

    I'm sure all three of the candidates would have been good.

    One of the main jobs of a state university president is to get money from the legislature. Given our state legislature, who better for the job than someone well-connected with the Republican party and the predominant religion?

  • Anonymous
    March 7, 2009 6:39 a.m.

    As a UVU grad I am pleased with this pick. This is a wonderful university which provided me succesful orientation to my current career. Good luck, Dr. Holland.

  • Sis in TX
    March 7, 2009 5:59 a.m.

    Congratulations to Dr. Holland and his family. His credentials in this article were impressive. I have confidence in the people who interviewed the other 36 applicants. And I am sure there were other equally wonderful candidates but this is who they chose. They were in the position to make that determination. We have to respect their decision. I for one am glad that we had so many fine people to choose from. Dr. Holland must have been superior though, thus the choice. In these economic times and with the challenges faced by our young people to be able to attend such a University...we need to think and speak positively about Dr. Holland and pray for him to lead with integrity. He is walking into quite a difficult job. I wish him all the very best and will be asking for divine help for him. There is oposition in all things, thus, we cannot get too upset or worry about the nay sayers. It's ok...I believe Dr. Holland is ready to walk the talk.

  • A Concerned UVU Student
    March 7, 2009 2:54 a.m.

    I am terribly, terribly disappointed by the pick. At a delicate time when our university is growing rapidly and times are difficult, the Board of Regents selects a man, who in his own words, wants to put the brakes on the growth and development of the school. We have award-winning art, dance, and theatre programs, sciences that need desperate funding and a new building, talented writers in the English programs, budding young CEOs in the business department, and a capable, enthusiastic student body that wants to see their futures realized. Rather than brake our growth, is it really that you want to *break* our growth and success?

    I hope all my fellow students and their parents and friends will join in voicing their opinion over the future of our school. If you want to see a bright future, if you want to make and be part of that bright future, SPEAK OUT. At BYU people may not be able to speak their minds freely, but we at UVU do.

  • why go to Duke?
    March 7, 2009 1:23 a.m.

    I'm perplexed that so many good Utahns leave Utah for grad school and then come back here with a "passion for education in Utah"-----why did you ever leave Utah if you love education in this state? Did you leave Utah to get away from family? That's an okay answer if that is reason. It makes me sick that people have to go to Yale or University of Chicago or Oxford in order to get "a better experience" and then come back here to Utah to teach the rest of us about the "real world." I think our world is a little like the pharisees and sadducees in that we worship the PH.D.----and we know we have to earn it outside of Zion in order for it to "matter."
    But I don't have an idea to replace the system we all find ourselves in: a culture that is always learning and, hopefully, someday will lead us to the truth. I shouldn't be cynical I know, I know there are a lot of good faculty and students at UVU and I think the university has a great future.

  • Good guy
    March 7, 2009 12:41 a.m.

    I'm going to be straight up honest and say I hated his class. Seriously how anyone could be that interested in Plato and Aristotle is beyond me, but the GUY IS AMAZING.

    I mean I actually almost cared about what he was teaching even though it was the most boring stuff I have ever studied. He is extremely intelligent and relates very well and I have not doubt he will be a great president of that university even without a lot of leadership experience.

    Don't knock on someone you don't know! Resumes don't tell the whole story or even most of the story of who we are and what we are capable of.

  • Skippy
    March 7, 2009 12:34 a.m.

    Way to go Matt! We are really proud of you. From the physical plant office from your summer high school working days.

  • Anonymous
    March 6, 2009 11:06 p.m.

    I think Nice Pick is talking about Mike Benson at SUU. He has transformed that place although there were some who questioned his credentials just like Holland's. Give him a chance and I'll but Holland will take UVU to a new level just like Benson has done in Cedar. These two are the future of higher ed in Utah.

  • Nice Pick
    March 6, 2009 10:37 p.m.

    I attended another state university. I remember when the time came to pick our new president, a lot of the same things were said about the man who was selected. He was a man of vision, student oriented, a thinker and driven. I watched as our new president took over and made our university better then ever. I'm sure President Holland will have the same ability. It takes more then a resume to make a president of a university. I applaud the Board of Regents. Best wishes to President Holland.

  • John Pack Lambert
    March 6, 2009 9:48 p.m.

    Matthew S. Holland has been described as "A raising star in the field of American political thought". He is a thinker, an academic researcher and an author. He can give UVU what it needs to be a real university, academic integrity.

  • Future Grand for UVU
    March 6, 2009 9:05 p.m.

    Today I sat on an unofficial committee to interview him and the other two candidates. I went into the interview VERY skeptical about Matt feeling the same way many have expressed here. I came away impressed in the way he connected with the 20+ people in the room. I have confidence that he will do a great job communicating to the world what UVU is about. I think he will be a great face for UVU. Behind him are great people with lots of experience that will move the academic mission forward. I am sure he will grow up with UVU as UVU is in the process of carving out its unique University mission. One of the key points of the UVU mission is being student centered. He shares the student focused teaching institution that UVU is. I look forward to what lies ahead for this great institution.

  • Re: stephen I
    March 6, 2009 8:51 p.m.

    I seemed to recalled a former President of the University of Utah by the name of Dr. Machen who has a DDS who now is a President of the University of Florida. I rest my case.

  • Age?
    March 6, 2009 8:37 p.m.

    His dad was even younger, 39, when named BYU President.

  • From in and out
    March 6, 2009 8:15 p.m.

    I used to teach at UVU and BYU. Now, I am teaching in Texas and working with Baylor and NASA. I've met many Presidents. They come from varying walks of life. Let Dr. Holland lead the university for awhile and then, determine if this State run university is going where the taxpayers have determined its course. A university can best be described as a "city-state" type institution with enormous branches of organizations, people, and needs. The best leaders, many times, are those with vision, clarity of that vision, the ability to inspire, motivate, keep the institution viable and thriving. Give the man a chance, support the cause of education in Utah and at UVU. Please be fair before your start throwing the bombs to destroy him or the institution's respect as a serious educational place of excellence.

  • Major University?
    March 6, 2009 8:11 p.m.

    UVU is not a "major" university. No Doctorate degrees, only 2 Master's degrees. It's more like Salt Lake Community College turned into a University. Dr. Holland should be able to handle it.

  • Surname made it harder for him
    March 6, 2009 8:05 p.m.

    As evidenced in several comments here, Holland's last name made it more difficult, not simpler, for him to be selected to the post.

    He is clearly very well qualified from his Duke PhD to his experience working with the Governor and in private consulting. I cannot imagine that UVU had better options; but of course, I am sure there was the temptation to rule him out because of his father.

  • JM2C
    March 6, 2009 7:44 p.m.

    You don't need a teacher to lead a university. You need a business person - just ask all those at UVU Wasatch that are losing their jobs due to poor money management. UVU needs someone that will put them back on track and be able to make the school a viable option again in the future. I say Good Luck to Mr. Holland. I hope he can create a great school from a mediocre one.

  • to A Teacher
    March 6, 2009 7:38 p.m.

    Good riddance to "A Teacher". Talk about closed minded?! I am sure that you are making your decision based on cold hard facts. It is totaly objective with no previous bias.

    GOOD RIDDANCE. Please post your name and status so we can follow up on your idle threat!

  • Ditto Joy
    March 6, 2009 7:38 p.m.

    And what qualified Obama to become the most power man in the world? Oh, yeah, he was a city organizer and absent senator.

  • BYU Prof
    March 6, 2009 7:15 p.m.

    I know many colleagues here at BYU who have directed study abroad programs and many who have had actual positions of leadership. I have no beef with Matt Holland - I-m sure he is a good guy but I do have a beef with the Board who could not find some one with actual university leadership experience. Good luck Matt and good luck UVU - you'll really need it.

  • Anonymous
    March 6, 2009 7:07 p.m.

    It's really a sad day for UVA. Mr. Holland has ZERO experience to run a large University. Like I said in an earlier post, he has never ever even been Chair of his Dept or Dean of the College. I don't think anyone could pass a lie detector test that says he wasn't considered because of his family name or church connections. That being said, I wish him all the best. Running a large state University that has to scrape for its share of the funding is much different than being a lowly Associate Professor in a Department. He'll learn quickly, I'm sure.

  • John S.
    March 6, 2009 6:51 p.m.

    Excellent choice! This will be great for UVU. I went to BYU. At the time UVU was very small. Now it has as many students as BYU did when I attended. Congratulations to all. UVU and BYU complement each other nicely by providing a quality education in a conservative environment where religion is encouraged not discouraged. On a side note, I attended BYU when Matthew's father was President. I presume that running a University may come naturally to Matthew since he spent a lot of time watching his father. President Jeffrey Holland's crowning achievement during those times was establishing the Jerusalem center despite the many obstacles and negotiations required.

  • Robert Jones
    March 6, 2009 6:47 p.m.

    Awesome guy!
    I have enjoyed interviewing him today; and getting to know him a little bit. UVU has a cherished history of wonderful Presidents; and Mr. Holland will certainly be an inpirational addition to the legacy created by his predecessors. I look forward to getting to know him more.

    Robert M. Jones
    Photographer/Newswriter-UVU Review

    March 6, 2009 6:31 p.m.


  • Pretty Ridiculous
    March 6, 2009 6:29 p.m.

    When someone is hired they are not hired for having the best looking resume. If the Board hired on that criteria you wind up looking like the New York Yankees, tons of resume, but not winners. Instead, some people know talent when they see it and decide to hire accordingly.

    His father has nothing to do with it. The Board has a reputation also, they are not going to hire someone because of their father, especially when the father is not going to help them keep their jobs or positions. They hire the people they think will do the best, because that person will ensure them the most job security. They obviously believed that President Holland promised the most for the future. This can be determined by gut feelings, interviews, track record of success. Resume is not the only thing that determines the potential success of a President. After all, we do have Obama in the oval office!

    Leadership and people skills are the necessary job qualifications for a President. He has these in spades. He could end up being horrible, but nothing about him or his resume says he will be worse than the other applicants.

  • A sad loss for BYU...
    March 6, 2009 6:17 p.m.

    But a big gain for UVU.

    Dr. Holland is a fantastic professor who I'm sure will do UVU a great service.

  • UVU Admirer
    March 6, 2009 5:26 p.m.

    UVU's major need over the next few years is to rally the community and secure private donor support. In other words, the school needs someone to do the PR thing exceptionally well. The Regents hit a home run with this selection. Matt Holland is articulate and inspiring. He will share a vision of UVU's future that will ignite our alumni and friends and attract the community to UVU. Thanks, Regents!

  • Anonymous
    March 6, 2009 5:24 p.m.

    Dr. Holland has been one of my favorite professors at BYU. I'm confident that he will be a fabulous president at UVU. Anyone who actually knows Dr. Holland knows that he wasn't chosen because his father. He is a great leader who has the interest of his students at heart. We will miss him at BYU. Good luck, Dr. Holland!

  • Reality check
    March 6, 2009 5:16 p.m.

    Check out the comments in the other SLC newspaper for a reality check people. Everyone commenting here lives in dreamland. This "associate professor" (not even a full fledged professor yet) may be a great teacher but he does not have the experience to lead a university.

  • mom of five
    March 6, 2009 5:11 p.m.

    I actually personally know Kim Cameron and Jack Christianson, and they would both have made great presidents. I don't know Mr. Holland, but I'm sure that he will be a great president. I feel they were all very worthy and qualified candidates. I don't know why everyone feels like they have to be so mean.

  • DK
    March 6, 2009 5:11 p.m.

    My guess is that Holland will do well despite those evidenced here who would do him in from the beginning. Some people have to start on a downer no matter what--I feel sorry for them--must be a heavy burden to carry so much spite. Still only time will tell. If he turns out to be as good a president as I expect he will, what I don't expect is for anyone of the critics here to come back and retract their venomous, really mean-spirited words. Oh, and of course there will always be those who have to find some link to the "nefarious" dealings of the LDS Church if they can find even the most tenuous link--but, believe me, that IS "only in Utah."

  • Anonymous
    March 6, 2009 5:01 p.m.

    I never comment on news articles but have have to say something now. THe last two presidents of UVU were from out side of the state of Utah and NON MORMAN. They both did a fantastic job. I am sure that Matt Holland will be great to. Church membership is never a criteria in sellection of a employee of UVU the question is not even asked.

  • Religion not factor
    March 6, 2009 4:55 p.m.

    Holland's religion is not the issue. The issue is that his experience is either being downplayed by the media or the regents are taking a major risk on him. He may turn out to be a great president, but his experience now is very minimal. BYU is not run like UVU when it comes to funding. Working for Mike Leavitt is not leading a university. I'll give him a chance, but he needs to get rid of my doubts on his inexperience quickly.

  • Embarrassment?
    March 6, 2009 4:36 p.m.

    I'm sorry, but do you ever notice how many 1st comments to articles where a Mormon is involved state "only in Utah"? Such people should leave Utah and see how things are done in other places, I guess. I think President Holland has Utah's and UVU's best interest at heart--unlike some of the past presidents.

  • J Mil
    March 6, 2009 4:21 p.m.

    I don't think anyone who wasn't involved in the interviews and hiring process has any ground to say that he isn't as qualified as the other choices. That's why they do interviews and not just look at resumes. That's all we have to go on is what we know of their resumes. Those who made the choice has much more than that.

  • Taylor
    March 6, 2009 4:12 p.m.

    Hope he remains as president of UVU for a long time. Finally, a president with some decent values, that even reflect values of the citizens of the state. His dad did an excellent job as BYU president. He has more than enough qualifications, and I'm overjoyed (and surprised) that finally we have a local person as president, qualified, and not somebody with a new england agenda!

  • Prove it
    March 6, 2009 4:10 p.m.


    Prove that he's a "good ol' boy." Having grown up around "good ol' boys," I know them a mile off. Matthew Holland is not one and never will be. This is spectacular news for UVU and for Utah Valley.

  • Todd
    March 6, 2009 4:07 p.m.

    Yale>Duke, Cameron's academic work (publishing)>Holland, Cameron's administrative experience>Holland, Cameron's NAME

  • UVU Grad in St. Louis
    March 6, 2009 4:07 p.m.

    What a great day for UVU!! I received my AS degree from UVSC in 1997, and have followed the progress of the school closely over the years. I believe that Dr. Holland is the perfect choice to lead UVU into its very bright future. He has a passion, energy, and enthusiasm that will greatly benefit the UVU community. He also has the wisdom, intelligence, and vision to meet the needs of this rising university. Most of all, he cares deeply about people. The students of UVU are in great hands. Once again, great choice! Go Wolverines!!!!!

  • butterfly
    March 6, 2009 4:05 p.m.

    well it has been a long time in waiting for a new president

    i think that prresident holland will do a great job i am excited
    it is a great choice exciting.

  • Not Fair to Holland
    March 6, 2009 4:03 p.m.

    The naysayers for Holland as the choice do a disservice when they know nothing about the man, his qualifications. He deserves to rise or fall on his own merits, and obviously, he was thought of as being qaulified.

  • Wow
    March 6, 2009 3:58 p.m.

    Three weak candidates...and the winner is the weakest of the three. The Regents never seem to amaze.

  • Go UVU
    March 6, 2009 3:52 p.m.

    Great choice! I attended the announcement today and was really impressed with Mr. Holland. I think he will bring a great deal of academic integrity, enthusiasm, and school spirit to UVU.

  • JH
    March 6, 2009 3:33 p.m.

    Congrats Dr. H!

  • Alex
    March 6, 2009 3:32 p.m.

    Good pick

  • stephen l.
    March 6, 2009 3:32 p.m.

    This guy is not qualified to be the president of a major institution. He has a PhD in poli sci and has just been a teacher at the Y. The board picked him because of his dad. It is sad because the other two candidates where more qualified. I guess he will keep UVU on the straight and narrow though.

  • Luke Peterson
    March 6, 2009 3:27 p.m.

    Congratultions Dr. Holland! This is terrific news for UVU!

  • UVU Grad in St. Louis
    March 6, 2009 3:26 p.m.

    What a great choice for UVU!! I received my AS degree from UVSC in 1997 and have watched the progress of the school for many years. Matt Holland will do a fantastic job leading UVU to new heights. He brings a passion, energy, and enthusiasm that is infectious. He also posseses the wisdom and intelligence to lead the university in the right direction. Most of all, he cares about people. He will do what is right for the students of UVU. Once again, great choice!! Congratulations to you Matt!

  • Ned Hill
    March 6, 2009 3:24 p.m.

    Matt Holland will be a great president of UVU. I commend the Board of Regents for their choice. While he will certainly face many challenges in these troubled times, he brings optimism, vigor and intelligence to the task. I commend him to all concerned and offer him my full support.

  • UVU Alumnus
    March 6, 2009 3:19 p.m.


    What a fabulous choice! So much potential at UVU, and a President who can help that potential become a reality.

    Dr. Holland has a proven track record in academia, and a tremendous enthusiasm and love for students.

    Can't wait for that donation request from UVU -- sign me up for a big donation!

    Thank you Regents!

  • Alan
    March 6, 2009 3:17 p.m.

    The regents have no shame.

  • Michael Benson, SUU
    March 6, 2009 3:16 p.m.

    Good for Matt and his family and great for UVU! I have known Matt since our undergrad days together at BYU and I have every confidence he will be a superb president. Utah Valley has no idea what they're in for with Matt's energy, enthusiasm, and vision. I wish him, his wife, and kids the very best and look forward to working together on behalf of Utah's students.

  • CougarKeith
    March 6, 2009 3:15 p.m.

    In 20 years UVU will be an archrival to BYU in Basketball, and many other sports, and perhaps rent the stadium for football games??? Look out, here comes the WOlverines!

  • Embarrassment for Utah
    March 6, 2009 3:14 p.m.

    The state of Utah should be embarrassed today for the good old boy network is on full display. Rather than selecting a president based upon merit the regents went for cronyism. Only in Utah would the board of regents be so shameless as to elevate someone with no leadership experience from associate professor to president to lead a 20,000+ student university. I'm sure he is a good guy and will do just fine in the position, but the point is that the most qualified and able person did not get the job! Shame!!