I am pleased to provide you with highlights from my December College Council President’s Report.      


December 20, 2012

First, let me thank all of the faculty, staff, and students who have worked together to make this semester so successful.  Although Hurricane Sandy continues to have a devastating impact on the community and College, through our collective perseverance we experienced much growth and accomplishment, culminating with a recent ribbon-cutting ceremony marking the opening of a model unit in our new student residence halls. 

I previously advised that the Chancellor has committed to funding three new deans, and to capitalize on this opportunity we would be moving forward with the creation of schools as envisioned by the College through our Strategic Plan, Many Voices, One Vision. The establishment of schools will greatly help our efforts in advocating for additional space and personnel – offices, labs, classrooms, faculty, and staff – while also enhancing our national recognition and standing in academia. 

In order to facilitate this process, the Institutional Planning Committee (IPC) determined that certain requests would be made to the Bylaw Committee. Among them, the IPC requested that the Bylaw Committee determine the modifications that need to be made to the College’s Governance Plan to support the establishment of a School of Business and other schools. 

Consistent with its request, the IPC formally voted on November 30 to move ahead with the creation of a School of Business and a School of Education. Additionally, a preliminary proposal for a School of Health Sciences and Human Services is in the process of further development by the departments of Nursing and Physical Therapy.         

In response to a question raised at a recent Bylaw Committee meeting, I am advised by legal counsel that modification of the Governance Plan is not a prerequisite for the hiring of deans and the establishment of schools. This approach has the benefit of allowing the College to seize the resource opportunity provided by CUNY in establishing schools while also giving the Bylaw Committee more time to contemplate and discuss changes to the Governance Plan that may be needed in order to implement a school structure at the College. 

The Provost and I will be meeting with the departments of Business, Education, Nursing, and Physical Therapy to discuss their thoughts and suggestions about moving ahead. For example, the immediate appointment of an interim dean may be recommended by some departments as the interim dean could provide valuable assistance in the development of the schools. We are mindful that the proposals presented to the IPC are at varying levels of maturity, so understandably each school will have its own particular needs and respective timeline of progression.       

It is anticipated that the IPC subcommittee, chaired by Professor John Verzani, which is currently exploring the ramifications for the College related to the creation of the schools, will also be extremely informative and helpful to the implementation process.  

In closing, the last few months have been marked by great loss and hardship, first by Hurricane Sandy, then by the recent tragic events in Newtown, Connecticut. The holiday season reminds us more than ever of the importance of community and the treasure of family. Let me wish all of you a safe and peaceful intersession.