Section: archive

College Expands Institutional Research Position

By Grace Hitzeman

The College recently revamped the position of Director of Institutional Research. Erika Farfan has taken over the position, which has been “a second job for a lot of people” since its creation 10 years ago, she said. The Director provides “the background for informed discussions about Kenyon,” Farfan added. “My goal is to provide the information that people need to understand where Kenyon is today and support the discussions that will move the College into the future.”

Farfan decided to work at Kenyon because “students know about the quality of faculty at Kenyon, but perhaps they aren’t as aware of the caliber of the administrators and staff,” she said. “When there’s an opportunity to work with a community of education experts who are clever, concerned and curious with a common goal of excellence and service, how could I not want to come?”

Farfan loves that “every day is different,” she said. “I can spend my morning querying databases and running models in SAS and the afternoon learning about the history of Olin or joining a faculty discussion. I love the mix of people and numbers, big ideas and technical challenges.”

One of the most important aspects of Farfan’s job is giving and coordinating surveys; all of the surveys that students receive come from her. Her department “works to deploy appropriate surveys to the Kenyon community,” she said. “All of those surveys that you take at Kenyon’s request are important.”

Farfan has a variety of other tasks. “I do journal searches on topics for the Board of Trustees,” she said. “Another duty is answering a question from another higher education institution about how we do things.” In summary, she deals with “anything that has to do with presenting Kenyon as an institution.”

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