Maisel steps down as Goldfarb director
After serving for nine years as the Director of the Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement, Professor Sandy Maisel will step down from his position at the end of the 2012 spring semester. He plans to return to teaching in the Government Department after taking a sabbatical next year, during which he will be splitting his time between Brazil and California.
Maisel described his tenure with the Goldfarb Center as “an incredible experience” and said, “For me, the most enjoyable part is working with students on developing programs that they’re interested in.”
Among the highlights of the Center’s recent work was the creation of the Sandy Maisel Student Research and Internship Fund last year. Maisel described it as humbling “to watch students gain the ability to do research or do internships because of the generosity of alums and friends.”
The search committee for a new Goldfarb Center director, spearheaded by Dean of Faculty Lori Kletzer, has advertised and interviewed widely, bringing a number of capable candidates to the Hill. “I thought that all three of the candidates on campus said really interesting things about a direction in which they would like the Center to go, and I thought all of them had great ideas,” Maisel said.
According to Maisel, it is important that his successor builds upon the base that the Goldfarb Center has already established, which focuses on student initiative and holds a commitment to civic engagement. He stressed the importance of “helping students see what their role in the world is going to be after they graduate. Whether they’re working directly in government and politics or not...being involved civically is important.”
Maisel and his wife, Grossman Professor of Economics Patrice Franko, both received Fulbright Grants to study in Brazil next year during their sabbaticals. Both will return to teaching on campus for the 2013 fall semester, but Maisel does not intend to rejoin the Goldfarb Center.
“The reason I resigned is that I think that for the Center to thrive it has to be an institution,” Maisel explained. He believes it is essential “that [the Goldfarb Center] has an institutional memory, [one] that plays an important role in the college over a period of time, and that students apply to Colby because of what the Goldfarb Center stands for.”
The Goldfarb Center was founded in 2003 and has been instrumental in broadening the College’s government program and bringing speakers to campus. Maisel, the government department and the student body can look forward to new developments and achievements as the Goldfarb Center continues to grow and expand.