The Board of Trustees has asked me to define my sense of what our institutional goals should be for the coming decade. I have welcomed the exercise because it has served to clarify my own thinking about some new initiatives and some ongoing as well as familiar challenges. Its greater value will come, however, if it stimulates the thinking of the broader Puget Sound community: members of the faculty and staff, students, trustees, alumni and friends.
All the ideas I outline below have grown out of my six and one-half years at Puget Sound. They have been shaped by a great many discussions, both formal and informal, over these years with members of this broader campus community. They have also been informed by conversations with foundation officers, corporate and political leaders, other college presidents and parents.
This paper is decidedly not meant to be a blueprint for specific actions but rather to be a beginning point for campus deliberations in various fora over the coming year. Some of the ideas may suffer a deserved death. Others will become the province of various groups who through our normal decision-making processes will in various ways be responsible for their ultimate fate, revising, amplifying and implementing them over time.
We have over the past two decades made remarkable progress toward meeting our own ambitious and carefully delineated goal of becoming a national liberal arts college of genuine academic excellence. We have succeeded because we have been disciplined about the choices that we have made, principally the choices of how we use our resources, human and financial, to forward our mission.
Ironically, our very success has presented us with new challenges. We now compete for students and faculty with institutions that have longer-established reputations and more abundant resources. Our students and our faculty require and deserve increased and improved space for research and study, access to current and extensive library materials and to more sophisticated technology, and adequate support staff. Our students need more financial aid.
It is also the case that as we have come to ask more of our students, we inevitably require more of our faculty as well. For example, Puget Sound students normally write a great many papers and typically take essay rather than multiple-choice exams, all of which require substantial faculty attention. Faculty members normally teach six courses per year, a number greater than that taught by faculty at such peer institutions as Lewis & Clark, Colby, Kenyon and Scripps, where faculty teach five courses/year and Amherst, Bowdoin, Smith and Wesleyan, where faculty teach four courses per year. They serve as advisors on average to 15 students. Many of them work closely with students engaged in independent research and creative projects. Except in some of the sciences, overseeing these summer projects, senior projects and senior theses normally does not count as part of the six-unit teaching load. Faculty members also counsel students about graduate school, fellowships and career choices, often spending considerable amounts of time reviewing drafts of essays and writing letters of support for those same students.
Members of the faculty nurture and demonstrate their own intellectual vitality by engaging in scholarship, research and creative work. They contribute to the life of the college through various forms of service, ranging from service on University committees to meetings with alumni groups and with prospective students. They advise student organizations, attend student cultural and athletic events, and host classes in their homes. They contribute to their professional associations. They participate as volunteers in the life of the larger community.
I have long maintained that educational excellence requires resources. Thus, even as our financial situation is significantly stronger than it was five years ago, we-like all colleges and universities-face escalating costs. For example, eroding federal grant support for student financial aid has put new pressures on our operating budgets. So have growing needs for technology. Completing and maintaining the building projects outlined in the Goals for the 90s (See Appendix A for the Statement of Goals for the 90s) and addressing unanticipated infrastructure and maintenance problems have required substantial resources. All three areas-financial aid, technology and facilities-will continue to require significant and ongoing support. (See Appendix B for information about increases in institutionally-funded financial aid, in support for technology, and in financing for renovated and new facilities.)
The climate of public opinion presents us with further challenges. The current discourse about education emphasizes the worthy goal of providing increased access to higher education for more of our citizens, but it seldom focuses on the daunting and expensive task of providing a high quality education at both the K-12 and college levels. Rather than addressing this issue of costs, a number of influential opinion leaders in Washington State have begun to define educational quality in terms of minimal competencies which, they argue, can and should be achieved in an accelerated and efficient way. Others believe that distance learning will offer a panacea for growing costs despite the abundant evidence about the high costs of effective educational technology.
In this climate, it is essential that we at Puget Sound clearly demonstrate the value of a four year educational experience grounded in the depth and breadth of the liberal arts. We need to demonstrate as well the value to our students of our residential setting. We need to differentiate a Puget Sound education from technical training, from the mere transfer of information and from the mastery of basic skills. We need to make it clear that on-line communication is not equivalent to the sorts of small and carefully crafted classes we offer, classes in which engaged and well-prepared faculty provoke, challenge and inspire their students whom they know personally to think in new ways about and to come to new understandings of significant areas of knowledge. We must, in other words, communicate effectively the value of the kind and character of education we offer our students. We must communicate clearly to prospective students, their families, our alumni and the larger society what it means to be a Puget Sound graduate.
Most of all, it is not enough for us merely to know internally and informally about our strengths. Rather we need to create programs that clearly exemplify our strengths, and we need to communicate these strengths in all that we do. My ultimate hope is that when prospective students, their families, our alumni and even the public at large think about Puget Sound, they will understand immediately that we are a college that deliberately and successfully fosters intellectual curiosity and independence in our students, that is distinguished both by superior teaching and by rigorous interdisciplinary programs, that offers our students a culturally and socially rich campus life and that is committed to excellence in all that we do. Such notions are especially important as we revise the Core Curriculum and decide on institutional goals for the next decade.
In short, as we have in the past, we must continue to be deliberate in defining and setting about to realize our goals. It would be folly merely to stay our current course, believing that those past efforts will be sufficient to carry us forward successfully. Rather, we must continue to bring to all our endeavors our best thinking and our sustained will to achieve excellence in all that we do.
I have organized what follows in three sections. The first section describes the University’s progress over the past two decades (See Appendix C for a timeline of significant institutional events since 1979). The second section offers a series of proposed initiatives for campus consideration. The final section outlines some new and some familiar challenges facing us.
SECTION ONE: The History of the Past Two Decades
In 1979, the Puget Sound Board of Trustees formally resolved that the University’s priority would be to become a national liberal arts college. To this end in the 1980s, under the leadership of President Philip Phibbs, the University focused on positioning itself nationally and on raising academic standards. During this decade, we phased out most of our satellite campuses, with the exception of the law school, and most of our other graduate programs. We reduced enrollment (See Appendix D for enrollment information).
During this decade, we also re-defined athletics as being participant sports, rather than primarily an entertainment for spectators, and we joined NAIA. Although we continued to award preferential financial aid packages to all athletes with need, we limited non-need-based athletic scholarships to all women’s sports and to men’s basketball and swim teams. We deferred fraternity and sorority rush to second semester freshmen year in order to give all first year students a common residential experience. We added the Rotunda to the Student Union Building (now Wheelock Student Center) and built a new student residence, Phibbs Hall. In 1985, we were awarded a Phi Beta Kappa chapter.
In the decade of the 1990s, our emphasis has been on strengthening our academic programs, student body, and faculty and on clarifying Puget Sound’s mission as a liberal arts institution. To accomplish these goals, we transferred the Law School to Seattle University as a mission decision. We reduced enrollment even further by determining that we would seek and budget for a freshmen class of 650 FTE students rather than 700 FTE students, thereby seeking an eventual total enrollment of 2,600 FTE students. We joined NCAA, Division III, and phased out all athletic scholarships and all preferential financial aid packaging. We revised our business program to integrate it better with the liberal arts and to meet the goals of the business faculty for an interdisciplinary and case study approach rather than a functional one. We set about to increase the numbers of our graduates who study abroad, taking that number since 1990 from 10 to 17%. We have increased funding for student summer research and creative projects. We have brought the library on-line and networked the campus.
In the last five years, we have also accomplished important campus improvements. Most notably, we built the Concert Hall and new practice rooms in the Music Building, the Pamplin Sports Center–Fitness Center, and Diversions, the espresso cafe. We renovated the Norton Clapp Theatre, the Fieldhouse, several residence halls and Wheelock Student Center. We added new playing fields and new indoor tennis courts. We expanded the size of the bookstore. We updated the campus master plan. We eliminated the A-frames, chalets, parking and roadways in the center of the campus and turned space into a “central green.” Through the Campaign for Puget Sound, a conservative amount of borrowing and some campus reserves, we will over the coming years complete the new academic building, and we will renovate McIntyre, Jones and Howarth Halls, Collins Library and all the Union Avenue houses. In short, we will have successfully met all of our Goals for the1990s. We are looking ahead to meeting facility needs for Occupational and Physical Therapy and for the sciences.
The results of our efforts have been heartening.
As has been the case in recent years, nearly three-quarters of our freshmen come from outside the State of Washington, a sign of our successful national positioning. The members of the current freshmen class, the Class of 2002, in fact come from 448 different high schools in 41 states and several foreign countries. These students have been selected from applicant pools of approximately 4,000 students. During this decade, we have made progress on our goal of diversifying the student body with the numbers of ethnic minority students in the student body growing from 8 to 17%.
We have simultaneously brought to Puget Sound many academically talented students. The average SAT scores of the Class of 2002 are a desirable 1237, an increase of 173 actual (not recentered) points since 1980. In the last four years, the numbers of students scoring above 1270 on the SAT exams (or its pre-recentering equivalent) has grown from 27% of the class to 41%, while the numbers of students scoring below 1100 (or its pre-recentering equivalent) has decreased from 27 to 10.7%. Retention and graduation rates are at record levels with 70% of our students graduating in five years. Eighty percent of our students now major in liberal arts fields. (Appendix E provides comparative statistics about student quality, geographical and ethnic diversity, retention and graduation rates, and academic majors.)
Puget Sound during these decades has enjoyed fine financial stability. Perhaps most notably, the endowment has grown from $8.6 million in 1980 to a market value at the end of December 1998 of $176 million. Even more significantly, both because of the growth of the endowment and the decrease in the size of the student body, the endowment/student during this period has increased from roughly $2,000/student to $62,000/student (See Appendix F for additional financial information). Last spring, Standard & Poor’s acknowledged the University’s financial strength by assigning it an A+ rating. Financial contributions to the University have also improved markedly. For example, at the end of December 1998, we had raised $40 million of our $50 million Campaign for Puget Sound goal. Even so, the University does not enjoy the level of alumni support, either in terms of participation or contribution levels, of that at our peer institutions, a problem that has plagued us throughout our history.
SECTION TWO: Initiatives for the Coming Decade
As I have already suggested to the faculty, the staff and the trustees, I believe that our efforts in the coming decade should focus on strengthening the “liberal arts college” part of the national liberal arts college equation with a special emphasis on what it means to be a residential liberal arts college that has a palpable intellectual vibrancy. I believe that we need to do this because it is a worthy goal in and of itself. I also believe that doing so is necessary if we are over time to attract the kinds of students we seek and if we are to secure for ourselves a reputation for being a truly desirable and effective institution. It is equally vital in this era when students are being offered an array of apparently low-cost technologically-based educational choices that we continue to articulate effectively the significant value of a residential liberal arts education.
Earlier I noted the irony that the better we become, the more is required of us. There is a second irony related to our success. By achieving our goal of becoming a national liberal arts college, we now need to find ways to distinguish ourselves within that very set of institutions which initially provided our models. By saying this, I am not proposing a public relations campaign or that we resort to gimmicks. Nor do I think that we need to be unique. Rather, I believe that we need to be able to define what a Puget Sound education offers our students in ways that will be clearly understood and as clearly valued by prospective and current students and by our alumni. We need to be able to demonstrate how and why it is that the educational experience and campus life we offer our students will inspire their thinking and enrich their lives.
At the 1998 Fall Faculty Conversation, many members of the faculty articulated the “something more” that we offer our students. I think that all of us who were there were struck by the great commonality of faculty opinion about the significance of what we do (see Appendix G for Associate Dean Kris Bartanen’s notes from this meeting). But as I suggested earlier, it is not enough for us merely to have informal (and informally expressed) notions of our strengths and our value. We need instead clearly and effectively to bring these notions to life in our curriculum and in campus life.
Below I list five different initiatives for campus discussion which I believe would foster in our students intellectual curiosity and independence. Several of these initiatives would also communicate to our students the pleasures and even the fun that come with intellectual and cultural pursuits. All would, I believe, in one way or another serve to attract additional numbers of desirable students to campus, increasing our admissions yield. These initiatives are not arranged in any order of priority. Rather, the first three deal with our academic programs and the latter two with residential life and campus programs.
1) I propose that we develop additional programs to attract especially talented students. We know that both the Honors Program and the Business Leadership Program are extremely attractive to prospective students and their families. Enrollment Vice President George Mills reports that these programs elicit a higher level of interest than we can accommodate with existing places. For these reasons, I hope that members of the faculty will develop at least one additional honors-like program that provides different opportunities for especially-talented students. I envision such a program or programs as complementing but being separate from our current Honors Program.
2) We have in recent years expanded the opportunities available to our students to pursue an array of independent research projects that require intellectual autonomy, both during the academic year and in the summers. Many departments and programs require senior theses and projects. As a result of the Campaign for Puget Sound, we will have raised a $1 million endowment for student summer research in the sciences, thereby establishing permanent funding for a program initiated with support from the Murdock Trust in 1986. We have also through the Campaign secured funding, at least for the short term, for student summer research in the arts, humanities and social sciences. We will continue to seek to endow that activity. I believe that it would be desirable for us to unify and provide stable funding for these various activities and to communicate the predictable and ongoing opportunities available to our students rather than presenting them merely as a series of ad hoc possibilities. I will also ask the faculty to consider the feasibility and desirability of requiring a senior thesis or project for students in all majors. Such a requirement would build upon current curricular opportunities for independent inquiry.
3) The range and quality of our interdisciplinary majors, interdisciplinary minors, interdisciplinary concentrations within majors and interdisciplinary Core courses distinguish us from most large research universities and from many other national liberal arts colleges (see Appendix H for a list of Puget Sound interdisciplinary programs and Core courses). We have over the years mounted such programs because members of the faculty have believed that the traditional disciplinary boundaries do not always pertain to the ways in which knowledge is best examined and understood. Although I believe that our traditional majors serve our students and faculty well in providing intellectual grounding and depth of knowledge, I also think that we can and should do more to make it clear that our commitment to interdisciplinary studies in areas ranging from Classical Studies to Asian Studies is one of Puget Sound’s hallmarks and is of great value to students and our faculty alike. I especially believe that we need to preserve the strong interdisciplinary focus of the Core Curriculum.
In terms of the Core, I am heartened by our focus during recent faculty meetings on the freshmen year and continue to believe that we need to provide all of our first year students with at least two seminars that are intellectually rigorous and engaging. Well-designed and well-taught, such seminars should introduce our students to advanced level thinking and writing about significant texts and ideas in ways that will serve them during their four years with us and beyond.
4) I propose that we incrementally become more residential, with the goal of becoming at least 75 to 80% residential within a decade. Currently, 53% of our students live on campus and approximately another 30% live within a mile, enabling them to walk to campus and also to experience campus life in ways comparable to those students who are actually in residence. I believe, however, that within the next 5-10 years, housing within a mile of campus will become prohibitively expensive for our students which will mean that unless we build new on campus residences, many of our students will be forced to become commuters.
As we become more residential, I am convinced that we must re-conceptualize our notions of residential life. Specifically, we must provide our students with attractive spaces in which to live, study and have fun, and we must create a campus culture and a set of campus activities which better forward our academic goals. To do so, I propose the following:
a) That we build new on-campus residential halls designed both physically and programmatically to attract more sophomores, juniors and seniors to on-campus residences. In particular, I believe that we will need to offer suite or apartment style housing (with single rooms) that appeals to students who are looking for private and quiet places to study along with common social places for interaction with other students and with faculty. These new spaces should offer easier and more effective access to the campus network and to the internet than is possible from off-campus apartments.
b) That we continue to explore possibilities for curricular and co-curricular enrichment related to our academic programs, such as those developed by colleagues who have participated in the NEH Wyatt summer seminars and that have long been in place for the Honors Program.
c) That we organize both any new residence halls and floors of some existing halls around academic themes or topics (although not around discipline-based majors) in order to create an intellectually stimulating and socially enjoyable living-learning environment for our students. For example, these themes might grow out of the Core Curriculum. They might deal with larger questions of meaning. They might change every few years to reflect different curricular emphases or emerging student-faculty interests. They might take advantage of visiting faculty. One hall might be set aside for students engaged in independent work of some sort. Over time, it might be that particular halls would develop particular identities. Each hall would need modest funding for guest speakers and group events. Each floor of the new halls might also include a seminar room where currently offered seminars of interest to students in that hall might be taught. These seminar rooms might also be the location in the evening for guest speakers, other group activities or study. If we could find the financial support, we might include faculty apartments in the new halls. The success of such an approach to residential life would require the participation of interested members of the faculty.
I should note that several members of the faculty have recently proposed that next fall we establish pilot programs in some of the halls which would locate students taking particular courses on the same floor and which would sponsor co-curricular programs for these students. I am optimistic that we will be able to do so.
5) Some students express concern that campus life is not varied or interesting enough. Others seem to believe that intellectual life and having fun are mutually exclusive. Yet others believe that campus life is sufficiently varied but that it lacks activities of interest and value to the campus as a whole. And conventional wisdom has it that the student body lacks a sense of school spirit. Although various campus groups sponsor a great many interesting activities, the truth is that many of our students do not feel engaged in the life of the campus. With the exception of Prelude and Passages, there are few all-campus activities which connect students to one another or to the University. As a result, our students may not be benefiting as fully as they might from being part of a residential community. We know that this lack of institutional connection continues for many of our students after they graduate. Or to put it another way, our students’ lack of identification with the campus as a whole has, after their graduation, meant that even as many alumni feel connected to an affinity group or to members of the faculty, they do not feel a connection to the University per se.
I propose that we review our approach to campus programming with the following goals in mind:
a) That campus life seek to appeal to the broad interests of the student body as a whole rather than being a set of often fragmented and ad hoc activities. Specifically, I believe that we need to find a way to ensure that we are developing and revising campus programs with the goal of meeting the full range of student interests and campus co-curricular needs.
b) That we review and re-define the philosophy underlying our co-curriculum in order to create a more coherent and predictable set of activities that the faculty believes will enrich the curriculum and forward our academic goals. This is a complicated issue because currently there are many fine programs developed by members of the staff and by students that do enhance the curriculum. There are also many fine examples of faculty members generously giving of their time to activities outside their classes. And there are those ad hoc activities which are interesting and valuable. But because campus events are often not allied to the curriculum or to some widely-publicized themes planned well in advance of the events, members of the faculty frequently do not know sufficiently in advance about guest speakers and cultural events in order to be able to integrate such activities into their courses. Funding is equally unpredictable so that some faculty members are discouraged from initiating activities which would benefit their classes. In contrast, such initiatives as the Voices of the American Theater series and the Brown & Haley Lectures, which have enjoyed predictable funding, have been extremely successful in enriching our academic programs. We might, for example, institutionalize some additional annual events of interest to the campus as a whole, such as a speaker series, which are directly tied to some aspect of the Core Curriculum and which would benefit a number of academic departments and programs as well.
c) That we develop additional ways for our students to take advantage of the extensive cultural and social opportunities available in the Seattle-Tacoma area, building on the work of this year’s Connections (a.k.a Arts Ventures) Task Force.
d) That ASUPS and members of the staff work together to develop some purely social programs for students that are offered in a regular way. For example, students recently have suggested that there be monthly swing dances, monthly karaoke nights and so on.
e) That we address the various divisions in our student body but particularly those which often seem to exist between students who participate actively in programs sponsored by the Department of Student Activities and the Associated Students of the University of Puget Sound (ASUPS) and those who focus on more purely academic pursuits or on particular extra-curricular interests, often in athletics or the arts or within a fraternity or sorority. This too is a complicated issue because members of the staff and of ASUPS often do a fine job, for example by bringing to campus interesting speakers and cultural events. But once again even though many of our students have such positive experiences outside the classroom, these experiences are often unpredictable and of a fragmented nature. This problem is decidedly not a question of resources in that typically close to $400,000 of student fees goes directly to ASUPS to be re-directed to student organizations, clubs and programs.
f) That we continue to support ways in which students, faculty members and staff members contribute to the larger community whether by volunteer service, collaborative efforts with the neighborhood or continuing steps to make the community welcome at campus events.
SECTION THREE: New and Ongoing Challenges
We have over the years accomplished a great deal with limited resources and a good deal of dedication. Our past successes give me every confidence that we can and will approach our new and ongoing challenges well.
Our most significant challenge of course continues to be our need for increased financial resources. In particular, we will need new resources to meet the needs of our students for financial aid, to become more residential, to adequately fund the library and technology, and to provide increased support for the faculty. We will need to maintain well and continue to improve facilities for Occupational and Physical Therapy and for the sciences. It would be desirable for us to be able to construct a technologically-sophisticated resource center located either in the library or elsewhere which would provide support for both students and faculty who wish to use technology for class projects or for research. I think that several of our student support offices, such as Academic and Career Advising and the Registrar’s Office, perhaps along with the Center for Writing and Learning, might benefit from being located together in a central and attractive space. We probably need a better home for Admissions.
I especially hope that over the next decade we make increasing the size of the faculty an institutional priority so that we can enable members of the faculty to contribute to a number of the initiatives I outlined in the previous section and to other initiatives that inevitably will emerge. Specifically, if we are to ask members of the faculty to enrich the curriculum in new ways, to oversee more independent student research and creative projects, and to develop and be involved in new programs to enrich the intellectual life of the campus including those in the residence halls, we will need over time to free them from some of their current responsibilities.
Faculty at liberal arts colleges often work an average of 60 or more hours/week on their teaching, advising, other activities relating to students, service and scholarship. If anything, the Puget Sound average is probably higher. Clearly, to ask our faculty to add substantial new responsibilities to their current ones would be neither feasible nor desirable. Therefore, I propose that over the next decade we add a sufficient number of new faculty so that we reduce faculty teaching responsibilities, ideally to three courses in one semester and two in the other while maintaining current class sizes. Because such an initiative, even if accomplished over a decade, would require significant and ongoing resources–most notably for salaries, benefits and perhaps additional space–and therefore would also necessitate a number of challenging budgetary trade-offs, it would be essential that prior to any trustee action, the campus engage in extended and serious discussion about its implications in terms of resources, space and the curriculum. As part of this discussion, it would be necessary for us to review our current practices in relationship to release time. We will also want to look closely at the current patterns of faculty commitments within the curriculum. Again, I want to stress that the magnitude of such an initiative would require that the budgetary implications be both well-understood and well-supported prior to any trustee action.
Although much of what I outlined earlier is centered in our academic programs and requires the ownership and the participation of the faculty for us to be successful, the institution’s ongoing success requires the full and effective contributions of each member of the staff as well. It is axiomatic that Puget Sound has benefited from and will continue to benefit from a dedicated, fairly compensated and capable staff. We have done much to eliminate the vestiges of the days when we were a much larger campus which defined itself as a comprehensive university rather than as a liberal arts college. Offices across campus have made great strides in dismantling metaphorical barriers separating one from the other. Even so, we need to ensure that in all areas of the campus we routinely achieve the kind of collaborative efforts we desire. We need across the campus unrelentingly to be creative and responsive and not bureaucratic, to solve problems rather than merely reacting to them, to think institutionally and not territorially.
As part of our efforts to function effectively as a college, I hope that we can in the next few years review and revise some key institutional documents to streamline the procedures that govern many of our actions. I know that the faculty plans to return to the Faculty Code once the Board of Trustees has reviewed and acted on the proposals from the faculty’s recent revisions of the Code. I also would like us to turn to the Student Integrity Code to ensure that it reflects our current thinking about student roles and responsibilities. We are already in the midst of reviewing our staff performance appraisal criteria and processes. I further hope that we can create a campus culture in which litigation is not viewed as the appropriate step for dissatisfactions of many kinds.
We will also need, despite our strides in diversifying the student body, to continue to work hard in this area. We will continue to work to attract students who are able to thrive at Puget Sound and to ensure that they have the opportunity to do so. We will continue to seek additional financial aid endowment to support these efforts. We will also need to continue our efforts to locate and attract new members of the faculty, the staff and the Board of Trustees who will add to the diversity of the campus community.
Finally, I hope that we will inspire in more of our alumni the same sense of pride that those of us on campus feel about our accomplishments. I hope that over time more of our alumni will feel loyalty to the institution as a whole rather than primarily to an affinity group. I hope too that more of them will come to value our positive changes.
The Board of Trustees is now engaged in an ongoing and serious examination of how it should best build itself for the future. The thoughtful engagement on the part of the trustees about how they can make the institution a stronger and better one bodes well for our future.
Early in my tenure, I wrote that in order to achieve the Goals for the 1990s, we would need to double our $68 million endowment. Since I wrote that statement, thanks to successful fundraising, a careful use of our resources and the serendipity of a strong stock market, we have more than achieved that goal, increasing the endowment by 250%. Such progress gives me the confidence that with effort, determination and some equally good luck along the way, we will in the coming decade be able to secure the resources we need to achieve a new set of goals. I caution that securing these resources, especially on the heels of an ambitious campaign, will not be easy or immediate. Nevertheless, I believe that a clearly articulated direction will considerably benefit our fundraising and also our admissions efforts. A clearly articulated set of goals will also shape how we use our financial resources and the time and talents of members of the campus community.
I hope that my candor in this document will prompt equally candid thoughts about how we chart the next stages of our future. In the coming months, I look forward to hearing from you-both formally and informally, in writing and in conversations-about the various matters I have raised. In addition, I will ask the faculty to react to the ideas presented here and to offer others of their own about our future goals at our Fall Faculty Conversation. I will ask staff members to do the same at our annual meetings. I will discuss these ideas with our students at Fireside Dinners and also in meetings next fall with the ASUPS officers and the members of the Student Senate. I will ask the President’s Cabinet this summer to provide cost estimates for some of the ideas described here and ask members of the President’s Administrative Group (PAG) to think about ways to improve our administrative functioning. And of course I will discuss these ideas in an ongoing way with both the National Alumni Board and the Board of Trustees. I will then ask our established groups to take actions on any of those ideas that have survived or been improved by these months of discussion.
I look forward to hearing your ideas.