Riverland names new academic dean

Published 9:06 am Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Kari Busch can remove the “interim” from her title.

The 11-year Riverland Community College employee, who has been interim dean of academic affairs for the health, science and services unit the past year, has been appointed academic dean of those areas.

According to a statement released by Riverland, her hiring comes following a search that presented finalist candidates from Alaska, Wisconsin, Florida and Minneapolis.

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“Kari’s work history and breadth of experience will serve well the interests of the college and southern Minnesota,” said Ron Langrell, executive vice president for Riverland Community College. “She has the ideal accomplishments and motives to provide the citizens of Freeborn, Mower and Steele counties with world-class educational opportunities.”

Busch, 42, has southern Minnesota roots. She graduated from Glenville High School, holds a bachelor’s degree from Winona State and a master’s from Southwest Minnesota State University.

Her husband is a Riverland graduate and a nurse at the Albert Lea Medical Center, and her family includes two boys, ages 8 and 11.

“We’re very much into rural living, country life,” Busch said. “We have horses and chickens.”

According to the statement, as academic dean, Busch will provide learner-centered leadership, management, evaluation and administration for the achievement of successful teaching and learning through faculty and support staff. She will oversee the disciplines and programs of study (at three locations) including: astronomy, biology, chemistry, earth science, physics, home health aide, nursing pathway, pharmacy technology, radiography, mammography, cosmetology, law enforcement, human services, massage therapy and English for academic purposes.

Busch has served in various professional positions at Riverland, including supervisor of Riverland Training and Development, business consultant, adjunct faculty and director of admissions. She also has past work experience in fundraising, community outreach, marketing and alumni affairs.

“I was just thrilled when the opportunity came by, it is what I had aspired to have,” Busch said. “And I feel really great that I made it.”

Riverland facilities are located in Albert Lea, Austin and Owatonna.