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Board in brief

Highlights from the Sept. 19 meeting of the Board of Trustees

Welcome from the chair

Chair Barb Palk extended a special welcome to Chancellor Jim Leech who was attending his first Board meeting since taking over for David Dodge, and to new trustee Deborah Alexander. Chair Palk congratulated Colin Lynch and Dan Tisch on their recent re-election to the Board of Trustees by the University Council, and she recognized retiring Trustee Karyn Brooks for her seven years of service to the Board.

Principal’s Strategic Update

Principal Daniel Woolf highlighted four of his goals for the coming year, in addition to those within the strategic framework, including:

  • Developing the international plan
  • Developing our people, including faculty renewal
  • Focusing on government relations
  • Internal community building

Principal Woolf then gave an update on the strategic framework and presented a summary of the framework’s performance metrics.

Provost’s operational update

Provost Alan Harrison spoke to the initial report on the strategic framework and outlined the annual reporting structure for progress on the framework’s performance metrics.

Research Update

Steven Liss, Vice-Principal (Research), reported that nine Queen’s faculty members were recently elected fellows of the Royal Society of Canada (RSC); three were named to the RSC’s College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists; and two were awarded prestigious medals by the RSC. Wendy Craig has been shortlisted for an IMPACT award from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, and the university will announce Gilles Gerbier as its first Canada Excellence Research Chair.

Initiative Campaign Update

Principal Woolf provided an update on the Initiative Campaign on behalf of Tom Harris, Vice-Principal (Advancement). He noted that overall the campaign has raised more than $420 million, including more than $7 million in this fiscal year. The principal noted that he continues to spend a great deal of time working with prospective donors.

Faculty Report

Bill Flanagan, Dean of the Faculty of Law, provided an overview of the faculty and its recently adopted strategic framework. He noted that the faculty is now ranked among Canada’s top three law schools by Maclean’s and has one of the highest placement rates in the country for articling positions. The faculty’s new strategic framework provides a plan for further enhancing the law school’s programs and research profile, including through the hiring of additional faculty members, while also adapting to a changing law profession. Dean Flanagan noted that the faculty recently announced a new family law clinic, with support from Legal Aid Ontario, and that all five of the faculty’s clinics will move into the LaSalle Mews Building in downtown Kingston in November.

Student Reports

Rector Mike Young commended orientation week leaders and committees on the successful planning and execution of this year’s events. The rector gave a number of talks on mental health to incoming students and reported that he is developing terms of reference for a mental health award. He observed the strong working relationship between student leaders and the administration on key issues such as accessibility of residences and non-academic discipline.

AMS President Allison Williams highlighted that a number of institutions want to strike a balance between research and the student learning experience, and that Queen’s must establish other key differentiators, including fostering innovation and entrepreneurship.

SGPS President Kevin Wiener provided an overview of current SGPS priorities including enhancing the broader student learning experience for graduate and professional students by increasing student engagement outside the classroom, initiatives in support of mental health, and by strengthening the graduate and profession student community.

Committee Motions and Reports

The Board approved:

  • The university’s 2013-14 audited financial statements
  • A motion to rescind a 2001 motion directing the transfer of realized gains to and losses from the Pooled Investment Fund to the General Endowment Fund.

Comprehensive International Plan

Kathy O’Brien, Associate Vice-Principal (International), provided an overview of the university’s progress toward the development of a comprehensive international plan. She highlighted the consultation process over the past few months and a plan to move forward with the development of the international plan.