Campus Culture: Update

The faculty senate and administration have been working together to drive changes in the culture surrounding campus.

The discussion began early this spring semester at a faculty forum which focused on the sexual misconduct of a faculty member. Since then, the faculty senate has conducted meetings with various departments to brainstorm some of the ways campus culture could be improved.

“We have the momentum now so we have to make sure that we don’t loss that momentum,” Provost Tom Boyd said.

After conducting 7 meetings with departments the faculty senate feels confident to take the next step forward.

“We’re going to have a big meeting with all the faculty and try to summarize the ideas presented by the different departments. We want to introduce ten or twelve different high points that we can focus on,” Chuck Stone, one of the senate faculty members leading the discussion, said.

The meeting is scheduled to take place 4/20, and all students are welcome to attend.

“We want to articulate our values. The real goal here is pretty simple. Is someone outside of Mines comes to a faculty member, student, or staff member and asks, “What is it that Mines values?” we should all have kind of the same answer. I don’t think we do at this point. So having the discussion that allow us to have the discussions to define what that answer is and how we can articulate it in a coherent way is what we need to do,” Dr. Boyd said.

Leading up to the meeting, Ken Osgood and Chuck Stone will be working to determine commonalities from the meetings with the various meetings. They will be presenting the findings to the faculty to continue the conversation.

“If we don’t have some kind of nucleus at the end of the spring semester. We’re going to lose a lot of momentum over the summer,” Dr. Stone said.

“I would love to see something in the core values that we appreciate that we bring in truly exceptional students to the institution and that they deserve a truly exceptional experience,” President Paul Johnson said. “The faculty senate is trying to accurately articulate expectations for themselves. Especially concerning their interaction with other faculty members and their students.”

Looking forward, the faculty senate will be work extensively with the faculty to drive the conversation.

“I see the senate as a primary driver here in terms of helping us define and drive the campus culture forward in terms of expectations and values for faculty. However, it takes time to implement changes in a community,” Dr. Boyd said.

“The next step is to see how these core values impact the behavior of the institution, and that is a longer progress,” President Johnson said.

By the end of this academic school year President Johnson would like to solidify some core values of the institution.

The faculty Senate and administration are still in the brainstorming stage of the discussion. However, at the faculty meeting on 4/20, the faculty senate plans reignite the conversation amongst faculty. All students are invited to provide input, and contribute towards what they believe campus culture should look like in the future.

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