Outgoing UM Vice President Concerned About Data Request

UM legal counsel says campus has not given any student data to consultant

By Tristan Scott

MISSOULA — An outgoing University of Montana vice president, who was hired to increase the school’s enrollment, says he’s concerned the wife of university President Seth Bodnar is seeking confidential student information on behalf of a consultant that has offered to help recruit students.

Tom Crady says Chelsea Elander doesn’t work for UM, but has asked university departments for student data.

Emails obtained by the Missoulian indicate Elander asked for whatever information was permissible including transcripts, grants and scholarships, family income, religion and social media information.

UM legal counsel Lucy France says the campus has not given any data to The Messina Group, whose CEO graduated from UM and led former President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign. Jim Messina offered his firm’s help. UM’s enrollment has dropped nearly 30 percent since 2010.

Bodnar didn’t renew Crady’s contract, which expires in June.

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