By Farnia Fekri
Ryerson announced on Oct. 26 that current provost and vice president academic Mohamed Lachemi will act as interim president when Sheldon Levy leaves on Dec. 1.
While a search committee narrows down a list of candidates for a long-term president, Lachemi said he hopes to continue projects such as overseeing the construction of the Church Street development and tackling the issue of limited space.
“We have to keep the business of the university going in a very efficient way and we have to keep going with the momentum,” he said, adding that the Academic Plan he established as provost will also be a priority for him.
Having worked at Ryerson for 18 years, Lachemi said he knows the institution well — which Levy agrees is the reason he was chosen for the position given his role alongside the main leaders on campus.
“What you really want as some-one who is interim is to be able to pick up where I’m leaving and continue,” Levy said. “I think he’s the obvious and the right choice.” Levy said it feels strange to have an interim president decided as his time in office quickly winds down. “These are moments when you really know the end is near and I can’t say that you don’t feel odd,” he said.
Lachemi said he hasn’t decided whether he wants to be president for more than just the interim.
“It’s too early for me to decide,” he said. “I would rather focus on my job now.”
While Lachemi said he will start consultations on a replacement provost, the university hopes to have decided on a new president by spring or summer 2016.