I want to thank everyone who attended and participated in last week’s town hall concerning the proposed Governance Plan, as well as those who contacted me over the last six weeks to personally share their thoughts. I have taken your feedback to heart, especially those requests asking for additional time to reflect and engage in conversations to improve the plan.
It is important to me that the College have a more inclusive and nimble Governance Plan that empowers people, gives voices to the unheard, improves the climate, and clearly defines the roles and responsibilities of our constituents. For these reasons, I want to honor these requests and allow additional time for more feedback and discussion.
In that spirit, we will continue to work together on the plan through the start of the Fall semester, to make sure we get it right. Based on suggestions from the campus community, I will be assembling a few small task forces to work on specific aspects of the proposal that, based on the feedback received, need a little more attention.
Of course, other committees are also welcome to simultaneously engage in their own review and submit any revisions or suggestions that they would also like to be considered. To facilitate ongoing input, the Teams site will remain active.
As previously stated, the new plan will be guided by the following principles:
- acknowledge shared governance and outline the distinct roles and responsibilities of all constituents, including the roles and responsibilities of academic deans
- encourage broader representation of the campus community, through changes in practice, including term limits and limiting the number of committees on which one person can serve at any one time
- empower committees to make decisions, which includes having their recommendations being made directly to the appropriate administrator
- have one unicameral body chaired by the President, which includes faculty, student, and staff voices
- encourage civility, respect, and inclusion
- align the College with Middle States standards.
In my opinion, a plan that achieves these objectives will help CSI move ahead and get us to where we need and want to be as a campus.
The committees will be formed within the next week and will be asked to get started on this important work immediately. The proposed plan will then be brought to a referendum in October. This is an important step for this College, and our community – faculty, staff and students alike. We have a great opportunity to make important changes to help shape our future, and to this end we must keep moving ahead. I ask that you not let this opportunity pass you by without contributing constructively to the conversation.
By William J. Fritz