October 15th, 1991
- Location: Great Hall
- Time: 4:15 pm
- Present: Robert Bonner, Marion Cass, Carol Campbell, Susan Jaret McKinstrey, Martha Kaemmer, Brian Kettenring, Stephen Lewis, Aaron Mysliwiec, Kit Naylor, Mark Pihlstrom, Josh Resnik, Cris Roosenraad, Amori Runganadhan, Clement Shearer, Steve Soderman, Robert Tisdale, Constance Walker, Mike Wickersheimer, Cathy Yandell
- Absent: Charles Johnson, Geri Joseph, Elizabeth McKinsey, Martha Paas, Gretchen Vaughn
- Guests: Mike Joy, Mark McClusky, Chris Youngquist
- Secretary: Marge Symens
- Keywords: Board of Trustees
1. Approval of Minutes
The Minutes for the September 17, 1991, meeting were approved as written.
2. President's Report
President Lewis reminded the Council of the invitation to join the Board of Trustees on Saturday morning, October 26, for discussion of several of the key factors contributing to the success of the College.
President Lewis expressed a hearty thank you to all those whose hard work and efforts contributed to the success of the various 125th anniversary events of the past week. Special mention was made of those who worked behind the scenes, including Grounds, Shop, Custodial Services, Food Service, Alumni Office, College Relations, Media Services, Publications, etc.
President Lewis asked Professor Bonner to update the Council on discussions on proposed changes to the College governance system.
Professor Bonner referred the group to the handout describing proposed revisions to the College governance system. The faculty members of Council met twice during September, bringing existing and new members up to date on the issues. Discussion was broadened to include meetings with the Dean for Budget and Planning, Dean of Students, and student Council members. And, it was broadened further with distribution to Department Chairs and CSA Senators of a draft, prepared by Aaron Mysliwiec, Professor Bonner, and Dean McKinsey, describing the proposed governance structure. The proposal was discussed at last week's Department Chairs meeting; faculty contributed suggestions for handling agenda items for the proposed Education and Curriculum Committee (ECC).
Aaron Mysliwiec reported that the proposal was well-received in the CSA meeting, but there is some reservation about the ECC, how it would work and how agenda would be set, and similar reservation about the proposed College Council. CSA members suggested that Committee on Student Life (CSL) recommendations/decisions go to the Senate for final approval as ECC's are proposed to go to the faculty for final College Council - okay. They see the two groups as similar in function. The Senate would like to have open forums on the governance system to get an idea of College Council's plans before Winter Term. Josh Resnik added that there is concern about where students fit in, in the formulating of educational policies. CSA members discussed ways for more student input; they suggested that a Senate subcommittee for academic affairs meet regularly with the ECC and faculty to present student concerns. They questioned how to determine when CSL's jurisdiction ends and Council's takes over--which policies come under which body. Professor Bonner commented that subsequent meetings are important not only to set a description of the model but also a description of important procedures. Procedural recommendations running parallel to the more formal constitutional governance structure may enhance its effectiveness.
Steve Soderman spoke about the proposed governance system from his alumni Council member perspective. The proposed elimination of alumni participation on the Council came as a surprise to him. After discussing the matter with several people, including Alumni Board members, he asks that consideration be given to keeping alumni active on the College Council in some capacity, for a variety of reasons. He felt that alumni members can bring a valuable viewpoint, perspective, and objectivity to the Council. They get an indepth month-by-month operating view of the College, not possible from tri-annual, two-day meetings, that enable them to provide beneficial insights to Alumni Board discussions. Mr. Soderman also stated that alumni membership on the Council "legitimizes" the Alumni Board. Alumni become more than fund- raisers; they actually are actively involved and participate in voting issues of the College. Mr. Soderman supports the need for change and the proposed changes, suggesting that an area of weakness may be that the CSL doesn't answer to a wider body as the ECC answers to the faculty. He felt that retaining alumni membership on the Council is valuable both to the College and the alumni.
Alumni member Kit Naylor seconded Steve Soderman's comments. She felt that alumni will have concerns and should have an opportunity to comment on this issue as well. Both she and Mr. Soderman are interested in the good of the College and would like to continue as alumni members of the Council.
Professor Cathy Yandell voiced appreciation for Steve Soderman's and Kit Naylor's perspective. She mentioned that the model's proposed increase in Council meetings, requiring more commutes to campus, had a bearing on the initial decision to eliminate alumni membership. President Lewis commented that the trustees are comfortable with the separation of membership as long as information is communicated. He felt that some thought needs to be given to the matter of alumni participation on the Council. Professor Bonner informed the group that a large working-lunch meeting is scheduled for Monday, October 28. Smaller groups may convene prior to the larger meeting to prepare relevant information and papers to maximize the effectiveness of the meeting on the 28th.
3. Committee Reports
Administrative Policy Committee
Dean Clement Shearer reported that the APC is looking at the budget from a three-year perspective: the year completed--how we did, the year in process, and preparation for the next budget year--1992-93.
Dean Shearer related that the budget was balanced for the 1990-91 year, with only a "thin and vulnerable" net gain of $4,604. Revenue was generated from thirteen additional students, as well as from less than allocated expenditures for Sales and for Salaries--largely from unfilled positions, and lower than expected utility costs. A full staff and colder weather would have quickly negated any revenue gains. Conversely, income fell a bit short from private gifts, about one-quarter of a million dollars, largely from less-than-projected income from the Alumni Annual Fund. Giving was greater than the previous year but less than hoped for.
Dean Shearer referred to the 1992-93 Budget Summary handout, which estimates operating budget income and gives one scenario for 1992-93 expenditures. Income is based on a 6.5% increase in student fees and an enrollment of 1710 students. The financial aid estimate is based on several assumptions, including adhering to our policy of need- blind admission, meeting full demonstrated financial aid, a 4% increase in student hourly wage, and a similar financial aid package as in past years. The expense scenario is not a recommendation but a starting point for discussion in the Committee. It includes a 5% increase in the compensation pool and no additional FTE beyond the filling of vacant positions. Most no-growth lines in the current budget increased 4% to cover inflation. The budget, as stated, has a deficit of $112,000, necessitating changes and trade-offs. Areas requiring growth, including the Library, computing, etc., still need to be addressed within budget constraints.
Committee discussions will include academic program needs and objectives in the next few years; Dean Galovich will attend the October 29 APC meeting to present and facilitate discussion on academic interests. On November 5, computing and library needs and projections over a span of years will be presented by Director of Computing Carl Henry and Librarian John Metz, respectively. Dean Shearer reported that Committee discussion seems to bring some agreement that compensation is a priority and that vacancies, rather than increased FTE, should be used to fill critical staffing needs. These issues need more discussion and evaluation. Dean Shearer felt that the committee was looking at the issues behind the line items to address critical needs, generate savings, and maximize the operating budget to provide funds for those programs deemed important and essential.
Dean Shearer shared his optimistic view that there is still room for growth within the College, if approached prudently and available resources are allocated and used efficiently. He hopes to have APC's interim budget recommendations by the end of the term, corresponding with the expected arrival of 1992-93 department budget requests. APC budget discussions will continue into Winter Term. The "Framework for Strategic Planning" draft distributed to members resulted from discussions of the College and the Finance and Planning Committee of the Board of Trustees in answering the question, "What are the several key factors in Carleton College's success?" It is felt that an institution will benefit from describing what those factors are and determining what makes it work, where it is relative to the goals for the key factors, and what its future direction should be. The Framework also can provide a basis for effective resource planning and allocation. It currently lacks the addition of an "environmental scan," an assessment of future plans and opportunities influenced by external and internal social, political, economic, etc., factors. This document is a work in progress, with some factors more comprehensively described and others needing expansion. It has been reviewed by senior administrative officers, several of the faculty, and will be presented to the full Board next week. Strategic planning is a continual process, requiring periodical review and assessment.
President Lewis reported that next week the Board, Council members, and invited guests will focus discussion on the first three factors-- Character of the Students, Quality of Faculty, and Curriculum--and their objectives and measurements, both tangible and intangible. The Board is open to and looking for input and opinion and plans to have extended discussions of the key factors over the next few years. The Framework formulation and discussions have no formal schedule, but it should be looked at in a systematic fashion, keeping to what's central to the key factors.
Student member Mike Wickersheimer referred to the zero-growth activity fee budget line item and asked if it had been reviewed and increased for the coming budget year. Dean Shearer responded that it had not been discussed to date and welcomed suggestions and input.
Educational Policy Committee
Professor Robert Bonner referred the Council to the statement prepared by the Dean of the College's office and passed by the EPC on the new regulation for commencement participation with an asterisk.
On May 15, 1991, the EPC voted to bring the treatment of the Physical Education Requirement in line with other College requirements with regard to participation in the Commencement program. It has been the case that students have been allowed to participate without having completed the physical education requirement. Under the new policy, effective for 1992 graduates, the physical education requirement is regarded in the same light as any other requirement. That is, students can fail to complete the requirement because they fail the course in the last term and still participate in Commencement with an asterisk, but the presumption here, as with any other course, is that an effort has been made.
It was moved and seconded that the policy regulating commencement participation with an asterisk be accepted as written. The College Council approved the new regulation, by a voice vote without dissent, which reads as follows:
Commencement Participation With an Asterisk
In June of each year the Academic Standing Committee makes a final review of the records of all seniors. In certain cases, specified below, the Academic Standing Committee may permit students who have not achieved the minimum graduation requirements to participate in Commencement even though they will not receive degrees and are not considered graduates of the College. The Academic Standing Committee's underlying presumption is that students have planned their programs so as to complete all requirements by the end of their 12th term. The asterisk, then, serves to cover last minute situations.
These cases are:
- A grade of "NC" in the comprehensive exercise 2. Failure to achieve a total of 210 credits because of a grade of "Fail" or "N/C" in a Spring Term course immediately preceding Commencement.
- If a student is lacking more than one requirement, fulfillment of which cannot be met through one course (as a rule), the student does not qualify for an asterisk.
- Lastly, Professor Bonner reported that the EPC has had very interesting discussions as they attempt to expand grading descriptions and to define more specifically the intent of A, B, C, and D grades. This issue is back to the EPC and faculty for additional discussion.
Social Policy Committee
SPC Chair Aaron Mysliwiec handed out the most recent draft (#3) of the Alcohol Policy. Comments received from the second draft, previously distributed, were incorporated into the draft in hand. The Policy is on the agenda today to provide another opportunity for comment or discussion.
Changes in the third draft include dividing the Philosophical Statement in the Introduction into several paragraphs. In I-A's second paragraph, first sentence, the word "regulate" was inserted instead of "enforces" or "maintains." In I-A's third paragraph, the word "unlawful" was inserted in the first sentence: "... believe that the unlawful use, possession, sale, ...." The word "illegal" was deleted at the end of the same sentence, "... distribution of alcohol and/or illegal drugs has occurred."
In I-B, Statement of Commitment to Education, some reference to FIPSE grant endeavors will be made, affirming the College's commitment to developing a continuing program for alcohol and drug education. Also, Statement C in III. Sanctions and Enforcement was moved to II. Regulations, as Statement A. The third draft combines the second draft's II. Regulations, B, C, and D, on permitted/prohibited areas for alcohol use and registration, to form Statement C in II. Regulations. This statement is to ensure registration of and responsibility for alcohol events in public areas. In the third draft, Section II. Regulations has Statement G added; it includes several items from the current party form to better emphasis within the policy the personal responsibility of party sponsors.
CSA suggestions for sanctions include mandatory community service and possible fines for irresponsible registered parties or unregistered parties. This would provide intermediate sanctions between the current informal and formal ones. Another suggestion proposed having a separate student hearing board for alcohol-related issues, to have students in charge of ensuring responsible alcohol use.
Mr. Soderman asked what the deadline was for registering a party and how more spontaneous parties can adhere to this requirement. Mr. Mysliwiec reported that private events require 24-hours notice and public events, 48 hours. Professor Cass acknowledged the issue of spontaneity and said that it still needs discussion and resolution. Mr. Wickersheimer recounted that registering parties Monday through Friday precludes the frequent, more spontaneous party planning that takes place, especially on weekends. Mr. Mysliwiec confirmed that the registration process and the party form will be evaluated and updated once the Policy is completed. The spontaneity issue is being looked at; several ideas for resolution have been discussed. President Lewis said that a way to register spontaneous events should be found that includes assurance that the responsibility question is resolved.
Ms. Naylor commented that perhaps AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) could be mentioned in the Policy to encourage involvement and/or added as a sanction as necessary. She suggested including something in the Policy about intervention and expanding the educational portion of the Policy. She felt that Carleton alumni are very interested in the lives of the students and could be helpful in alcohol-related issues and would be willing to come from the Cities to host campus AA meetings. Professor Bonner questioned whether these items should be in the Policy or as keystones within our educational programs. Mr. Soderman relayed recent Alumni Board discussions which questioned whether a chemical dependency accredited course could be included in the Physical Education requirement. Dean Roosenraad commented briefly on the value of having such a course remain elective.
President Lewis said that consideration of the Physical Education issue will be left with Dean Roosenraad and the Physical Education Department. He felt that the process the SPC is going through in formulating the Policy is a very helpful one and asked that legal counsel be included in the process. Mr. Mysliwiec invited further comments and input on the Policy from members. The SPC hopes to have a final draft completed by the end of fall term to submit to the Council at the first meeting of winter term.
At 5:45 p.m. a motion to adjourn was made, seconded, and carried. The next meeting will be Tuesday, November 12.
*These minutes are unofficial and subject to revision and final approval at the next meeting.