January 14th, 2002

  • Location: Sayles-Hill 251
  • Present: President Stephen R. Lewis; Deans Elizabeth McKinsey, Stephen Kelly and Mark Govoni; Professors Martha Paas, John Ramsay, Cathy Yandell, Sarah Hurst and Jack Goldfeather; Students Ben Lum, Jessica Yarnall, Luke Peterson, Bill Galush and Kenechi Ejebe; Staff Persons Sam Demas and Tonya Smith
  • Absent: Trustee Observer Louise Heffelfinger; Alumni Observer Ann Iijima Lew
  • Secretary: Christine Lee
  • Keywords: Lewis, John W. Nason, Budget, Student Code of Conduct, Smoking Policy, Web Caucuses

Approval of Minutes

The College Council minutes for the meeting of November 6, 2001, were approved unanimously in a voice vote.

President's Report

President Lewis regretfully informed the College Council of the death of former Carleton President John W. Nason on November 17, 2001. Among Nason's many credits, he was considered to be "the father of the College Council" since he presided over all the conversations that led to the initial founding of the Council in 1970. Nason's most recent visit to Carleton occurred last year for commencement and his 75th class reunion. A memorial service is scheduled for February 7, 2002. President Lewis also reported that the finalists in the presidential search have visited the campus, and the search proceeds on schedule with the new president being announced by the Board of Trustees on the weekend of February 8th. Additionally, there is good news concerning admissions with the numbers running almost even in comparison to last year so that Carleton is positioned to match or even surpass last year's record number of applications. Despite earlier concerns about the impacts of the recession, Carleton is also running ahead in Annual Fund dollars and donors. As of December 31, 2001, there was a 14% increase in the total number of donors over last year. Finally, President Lewis reported that the Starr Foundation renewed Carleton's $5 million grant to the Cross-Cultural Studies program for another five years. This grant has not been counted in the December 31st numbers.

Budget Update

Dean Steve Kelly noted that the Starr Foundation's renewal of their $5 million grant will give the Cross-Cultural Studies program approximately another 10 years of operation with expanded scholarships for students from Asia. Dean Kelly also reported that he has received all the budget requests for this year and put them in draft form. On the basis of 1710 students, the requests are $3.2 million out of balance with the anticipated income. However, Dean Kelly assured the Council that this is normal since budget requests tend to be "wish lists." Dean Kelly described the budget process as being comprised of negotiations and attempts to satisfy the most critical needs while deferring on some worthwhile projects that we can't afford at the time. Dean Kelly commended the Associate Dean of the College for creating a discretionary fund a few years ago that meets the needs of various academic departments and which serves to reduce pressure on the budget. Dean Kelly reported that he will have a semi-final version of the budget to the College Council by early next month in preparation for the last College Council meeting of the term when the Council will vote on the Budget.

Update on the Student Code of Conduct and Smoking Policy Subcommittees

Dean Mark Govoni proposed that representatives from College Council periodically attend meetings of 2 newly formed Subcommittees so they can report back to College Council. This motion was passed unanimously. For all College Council Subcommittees, some Council members must be included in the composition of the subcommittee. Sam Demas and Bill Galush volunteered for the Subcommittee on the Student Code of Conduct. Additionally, the members of the Committee on Student Life (CSL) were commissioned to serve as the members of the Subcommittee on the Student Code of Conduct. Dean Govoni and Ben Lum will co-chair the Subcommittee on the Smoking Policy with Professor Jack Goldfeather also representing the College Council.

Policy on Web Caucuses

Dean Elizabeth McKinsey, Professor Cathy Yandell and Jessica Yarnall explained that numerous issues concerning Caucus, particularly Review, have surfaced in the Carleton community and warrant a closer examination through the work of a subcommittee. Rather than limiting the issue for the subcommittee, the Council wanted to broaden the scope to include all of the College's electronic communications with questions of liability, fairness, freedom of expression and confidentiality as the prominent issues. Luke Peterson expressed a strong concern about the potential elimination or censorship of Review since it has become an important means for students to exchange ideas. Dean McKinsey responded by reassuring the Council that this subcommittee would not have an anti-Review agenda. President Lewis added that all recommendations made by this subcommittee would be considered in the context of Carleton's history, values and past policies. Questions related to the composition of the committee (2 students, 2 faculty, and 2 staff members) were also discussed when Yarnall proposed adding more students and possibly consulting with attorneys to discuss the legal implications and liabilities. Professor Yandell proposed that the subcommittee should look at Carleton's history and come up with answers before consulting with lawyers. Dean Govoni suggested that getting more students on the committee would be helpful to offset low attendance. Bill Galush also mentioned the idea of having one or more ITS staff members on the committee to provide technical insight and knowledge. President Lewis along with the President of the Faculty and the President of the Student Body will decide on the composition of this committee. After some discussion, the College Council unanimously passed a motion to form a subcommittee to study questions of the ethical and legal issues pertaining to the College's electronic communications with special attention to protecting academic freedom and other Carleton values.

The meeting ended at 5:30.