MSU trustees appoint acting deans, award bids on construction projects

Contact: Terry Denbow, University Relations, (517) 355-2262,; or Kristan Tetens, University Relations/College of Arts and Letters, (517) 355-5633,

May 07, 2004

EAST LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State University Board of Trustees today approved the appointment of Patrick M. McConeghy as acting dean of the College of Arts and Letters and extended the appointment of William Abbett as acting dean of the College of Human Ecology.

"These individuals are skilled academic leaders and solid administrators," said MSU Provost Lou Anna K. Simon. "I appreciate their willingness to help us through this period of change and possibility."

McConeghy's appointment is effective July 1. Abbett's reappointment is effective immediately and runs through Sept. 30.

McConeghy replaces Wendy K. Wilkins, who has served as dean of the College of Arts and Letters since 1998. Wilkins will become a faculty member in the Department of Linguistics and Germanic, Slavic, Asian, and African Languages.

McConeghy, a professor of German, joined the university in 1977. He has served as the college's associate dean for personnel and finance since 2003 and was associate dean for graduate studies and research from 1993-2003. He earned bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in German Studies from Stanford University.

Abbett was dean of the College of Human Medicine from 1990 to 2000 and has served as a consultant to the Office of the Provost. He has been acting dean of the College of Human Ecology since February.

In other news, the board awarded a contract worth $9.7 million to the JM Olson Corp. of St. Clair Shores for construction of the Veterinary Medical Oncology addition to the Small Animal Clinic. The addition will house the newly founded Comparative Oncology Program.

Board members also approved the awarding of a $5.3 million contract to the Fryling Construction Co. of Grand Rapids for a renovation project of Marshall-Adams Hall. The work will include a new roof, new windows, new elevator and other mechanical upgrades.