October 25, 2013
Highlights from the Oct. 4 meeting of the Board of Trustees
Update from the chair
Chair Barb Palk welcomed new trustees Andrew Aulthouse, James MacLeod, Robert McFarlane, Kent Novakowski, Steve Tanner, Lewis Tomalty, and Mary Wilson Trider. She encouraged all trustees to participate in the many Homecoming events planned for the weekend.
Principal’s Strategic Update
Principal Woolf updated trustees on several initiatives and significant events. Highlights include:
The Provost highlighted that Kingston City Council approved amendments to zoning bylaws allowing Queen’s to build two new student residences on Stuart Street and Leonard Field. He noted that the 20-day period during which an appeal can be made to the Ontario Municipal Board ends Oct. 17. The university aims to have the two new residences open for students by fall 2015.
Campaign progress report
Tom Harris, Vice-Principal (Advancement), noted that Queen’s has raised $25.4 million for the Initiative Campaign so far this fiscal year, which began May 1, on an overall annual goal of $60 million. He remarked that the principal has played a key role working with major donors, as have the deans. The campaign has achieved nearly 75 per cent of its overall goal of $500 million. Work continues on the identification of and reaching out to potential donors.
Steven Liss, Vice-Principal (Research) provided an update on research activities and accolades, including the following:
Campus Master Plan
The provost noted that much work has been done on the Campus Master Plan (CMP) project over the past 10 months by the university’s consultant team, led by Urban Strategies Inc. Warren Price of Urban Strategies presented initial findings and the five key directions of the CMP project: assessing capacity, facility renewal and the need for change, place making, creating campus communities, the campus and the city.
Library and Archives Master Plan
The provost noted that the Library and Archives Master Plan (LAMP) is moving in lockstep with the CMP. The LAMP will provide a planning framework for the development of the library system at Queen’s over the next 20 years, based upon its solid foundation of superb services, collections and spaces. The draft Library and Archives Master Plan is available here.
Report from Senate
In addition to a written report on the May 28 and September 17 meetings, David Detomasi (School of Business) updated trustees on Senate activities. Highlights included communications about the implementation of the new budget model, Senate input on strategic enrolment management and the creation of a new degree plan in Indigenous Studies.
Reports were received from Rector Nick Francis, Alma Mater Society President Eril Berkok, and Society of Graduate and Professional Students President Iain Reeve.
Audit and Risk committee
The Board approved the university’s audited financial statements for the year ending April 30, 2013. Vice-Principal (Finance and Administration) Caroline Davis noted that although the statements show a surplus in revenues over expenses of $67 million, the majority of the surplus is not cash available for the university to spend. The surplus is the result of strong performance on investments held by the university and the Queen’s Pension Plan (QPP) and includes gains of $58 million that remain within the QPP. At August 31, 2012 the QPP had a solvency deficit estimated at $459 million.
Trustee David Pattenden also provided an overview of the committee’s broad mandate.
Capital Assets and Finance committee
The Board approved a revised debt management policy for the university that aims to ensure that any future debt is used strategically to support the university’s mission, while increasing transparency by creating alignment between the use of proceeds and debt issuance.
It also approved a micro/nano facility with a renovation investment of $1.3 million, funded by grants from the Canada Foundation for Innovation and contributions from CMC Microsystems and the Innovation Park grant, to construct a Queen’s University micro/nano research facility at Innovation Park, conditional on a lease for the applicable space to be signed with Novelis Inc.
The Board approved naming dedications and ratified the following Senate approvals: