Board of Trustees in brief
Highlights from the March 1-2 meeting of the Board of Trustees
The Board opened its meeting with a moment of silence for second-year student Kevin Cournoyer, who passed away in February.
Chair Barb Palk congratulated Trustee Dean McKeown on his new position as associate director of master’s programs in Queen’s School of Business, and Trustee Lauren Long on being selected for the Next 36, a national program designed to develop the next generation of high-impact entrepreneurs.
Chair Palk announced the results of the recent Board of Trustees election. Steve Tanner (Engineering and Applied Science) was elected as the staff trustee and Lewis Tomalty (Biomedical and Molecular Sciences) as the faculty/librarian/archivist trustee.
Principal’s strategic update
Principal Daniel Woolf gave a progress report to Board on his 2012-13 goals. Several key measures within the goals are complete, with the other measures on track for completion by the end of the year. Some of the highlights from the report include:
Principal Woolf updated Board on the proposed mandate statement. The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) continues to review the submissions and is expected to file a report within the next several weeks. The next steps are unclear as a result of recent instability within the provincial government. Regardless, Principal Woolf believes Queen’s should continue to push forward with developing its own strategic framework centred on the idea of the balanced academy.
Principal Woolf stated his interest in making the September 2012 Board-Senate retreat, the first since 2005, an annual activity. He also noted the Queen’s University Planning Committee, a joint committee of Senate and Board, is up for review. He said the committee has made some good contributions but that more can be done to increase its functionality.
Provost Alan Harrison updated Board on the searches, reviews and recent leadership announcements.
Provost Harrison also highlighted the new Co-Curricular Opportunities Directory (CCOD). The CCOD helps students find ways to get involved in extracurricular opportunities and provides them with the tools to describe the skills they developed during the activity.
Campaign progress report
The university has surpassed the $60-million fundraising target for the fiscal year (May 1, 2012-April 30, 2013). Tom Harris, Vice-Principal (Advancement), said 12,000 benefactors have contributed $61.1 million this fiscal year. $52 million of that total has come from 60 people. The Office of Advancement is concentrating on cultivating the university’s base of support and expanding its pool of benefactors to ensure the success of the Initiative Campaign and beyond.
Senator Lynda Colgan provided the update, focusing on Senate Operations Review Committee (SORC) and the work it is doing to reform Senate. SORC is currently considering changes related to attendance at Senate meetings, the rules of procedure, and Senate operations.
University Council reform
The Reform Planning Group (RPG) is close to finalizing a plan that all current councillors would vote on in April 2013. Some of the major changes include:
The RPG has proposed a five-year transition period to reduce the size of council in order to ensure a University Council election would still occur every year.
QUAA and QSAA reports
The Queen’s University Alumni Association (QUAA) is progressing well on its priorities of engaging current alumni, connecting with alumni where they live and work, and promoting alumni giving. QUAA President Jess Joss said the group needs to put more focus on engaging future alumni.
Queen’s Student Alumni Association (QSAA) President Rico Garcia said his group has been trying to connect current students with their future as alumni. QSAA has been doing that through a number of activities and professional development events.
Doug Johnson, in his final report to Board as Alma Mater Society (AMS) president, reflected on the importance and value of student engagement for the Queen’s experience. He expressed concerns about the decision-making process at the university, and said that serious issues could have been remedied with more consultation with students.
Rector Nick Francis expressed his concern about the different international exchange policies across the faculties. He also asked trustees for feedback and input on the review of faculty boards that he is conducting along with AMS President-elect Eril Berkok.
Matthew Scribner reflected on his time as School of Graduate and Professional Students (SGPS) president. He said the students he represents are concerned about the high cost of education. He expressed his hope that students should be involved and have input on the budgetary decisions of the university.
Audit and Risk committee
The Board approved:
The Board received for information the Standard and Poor’s credit rating report that gave Queen’s an AA+/Stable rating.
The Board approved:
The Board ratified:
Board approved naming dedications and received for information the research report, as well as the quarterly advancement, financial, investment and pension reports.
The Board reconvened open session on Saturday, March 2 to discuss:
The agenda is posted on the University Secretariat website.