When the board of trustees convened for its winter meeting on Feb. 4-5, its docket was filled with everything from approving sabbatical leave requests for 16-17 to a discussion around The Beloit Project proposals, an Inclusive Living and Learning Taskforce update to the signing of a resolution of support for the Powerhouse. Read on to see sabbatical approvals, along with more details from the meeting.
The Learning and Teaching Committee convened on Friday morning to re-engage with the work of identifying the ways in which the college should be tracking mission-fulfilling work. Trustees, Provost Davies, Dean Klawitter and others have been iterating toward a proposal which the committee chair, in Friday’s open session, presented to the rest of the board for discussion and brainstorming. Prior to that session, however, the committee went into executive session where it approved sabbatical requests for the 2016-2017 academic year.
Approved sabbatical leave for the upcoming academic year:
· Daniel Barolsky, Department of Music, for academic year 2016-17
· Charles Drury, Department of Theatre, Dance, and Media Studies, for spring 2017
· Bob Elder, Department of Economics, for fall 2016
· Alexis Grosofsky, Department of Psychology, for spring 2017
· Yaffa Grossman, Department of Biology, for spring 2017
· Bill New, Department of Education and Youth Studies, for fall 2016
· Donna Oliver, Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, for spring 2017
· James Rougvie, Department of Geology, for spring 2017
· Pablo Toral, Department of Political Science, for spring 2017
Other approved leaves:
· Natalie Gummer, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, for academic year 2016-17
· Diane Lichtenstein, Department of English, for academic year 2016-17
The Beloit Project, Inclusive Living and Learning updates
Associate Dean Matt Tedesco, aided by President Bierman, updated the board on the final proposals prepared and disseminated by The Beloit Project team. The proposal to move the college’s reunion into April (to coincide with Student Symposium and the Showcase event) was met with real enthusiasm, if several questions. In the months ahead, the team, as well as campus partners, will work to help communicate this move to alumni and the campus community, as well as develop a model for making fruitful use of alumni time in spring 2017.
Professor Debra Majeed, who is leading the IL&L taskforce, followed with an update on the group’s ongoing work, including their recently announced #MakeEquityRealatBC outreach and program. Majeed also answered questions about the scope of the taskforce’s work, its importance, and what lies ahead.
Emerson Hall news
In committee, the board also approved a request to allow additional donor funds to be applied to the restoration of Emerson Hall. While the building will still open to students in the fall of 2016, a close examination of the building’s needs, coupled with a high level of interest in the project from alumni and supporters of the college, has the project team planning to raise and invest another $300,000 to $400,000 in the building.
“We now have a really clear picture of the required budget,” Vice President for Human Resources and Operations Lori Rhead said ahead of the meeting. The updated estimates, which have the college spending a total of around $1.3 million in donor funds on the building, “seems to make sense for our long term programming and needs.”
When it opens, the building is expected to have 55 beds available for students.
Powerhouse resolution signed
At its October meeting, the board of trustees unanimously approved a resolution of support for The Powerhouse. In the intervening months, an artist and calligrapher was retained to put this resolution to paper for a formal signing. Following their Friday meetings, all attending trustees put pen to paper, pledging their support – in time and financial resources – to the project. The formal piece will be matted and hung in the building once the Powerhouse is completed. Prior to that, the piece (which includes a watercolor of the current building) is expected to be housed in a public location. Early plans point to the Visitor Center on the first floor of Middle College. Stay tuned for more on that.