Emory University announced Tuesday that Meredith Woo, dean of the University’s College of Arts & Sciences, is one of four finalists for the position of provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. Woo will travel to Emory Dec. 3 for a series of open forums and public receptions. If chosen, Woo would replace outgoing provost Earl Lewis, who is leaving Emory to become president of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, which gives grants supporting scholarship, the arts, higher education, the environment and information technology. Jan Love, dean of Emory’s Chandler School of Theology and chair of the search committee, said Woo is an excellent candidate. “She is one of four finalists who are clearly the caliber of leaders who are going to chart the future of higher education, and we’re very excited about her candidacy,” Love said. The Emory search committee began looking for Lewis’ replacement in May and solicited Woo’s application for the position. Love declined to provide specifics about why the committee selected Woo as a finalist, saying the committee’s deliberations were confidential. Woo and the other three finalists will each come to Emory for a day and a half of meetings and interviews with various stakeholders, including students, Love said. Love said she will deliver three names to Emory President James Wagner before the end of this year. Wagner will make the final decision about the new provost. Woo came to the University in 2008 from the University of Michigan, where she served on the faculty for eight years. Prior to teaching at Michigan, Woo taught at Northwestern University for 12 years and earned her doctorate in political science from Columbia. Woo has helped launch “many new initiatives, including the Institute of the Humanities & Global Cultures, the Quantitative Collaborative, the Asia Institute, and the Joint Institute between the College, Peking University and Hong Kong University of Science and Technology,” according to the College’s website. Woo could not be reached for comment Wednesday.