We applaud the State University of New York's board of trustees for taking action on the presidential search debacle at Nassau Community College ["NCC trustees get a deadline to pick a leader," News, June 17].

Almost three years have passed since president Donald Astrab resigned after two votes of no-confidence by the faculty. Since his departure, we have had two failed president searches at a significant financial cost to the students and the residents of Nassau County and New York State. From the perspective of faculty, the loss is much more than financial.

The crisis goes beyond the presidential level. We believe the breakdown of trust and communication at our college can only be ameliorated by an outsider who has not been part of the administration. We call on our NCC board to ask SUNY to appoint an interim president from outside the college who can bring an unbiased point of view and restore communication.

Such an appointment would signal both to the campus community and to any potential presidential candidates that NCC is prepared to have a genuine search, unmarred by the appearance of favoritism or internal wrangling. Only in this manner can we begin to return this campus to a semblance of normalcy. Our students and the residents of Nassau County and New York State deserve no less.

Kimberley Reiser

Faren Siminoff

Garden City

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Editor's note: The writers are the president and vice president, respectively, of the NCC American Association of University Professors Advocacy Chapter, a membership organization of about 50 people.