The author would like to note to readers that she is involved in a campaign to change Division I so that it will have a more dynamic and flexible structure, and to devise a Division I program that will better serve students and faculty alike. She is aware of her personal biases and intends the following to be an informational piece.
In September’s faculty meeting, the Educational Policy Council (EPC)–a board which discusses and considers academic policy changes – was formally charged by faculty with reviewing Hampshire’s current Division I and the “The First-Year Plan”. This roughly coincided with the five year anniversary of the plan, which was first implemented in 2002 and has markedly changed the manner and time frame in which Hampshire students are required to complete Division I. Council members are now in the process of reviewing a number of studies on students’ Division I experiences. Many of these are being provided by the Dean of Academic Development Steven Weisler, and by the Director of Institutional Research Carol Trosset who reports to the Dean. The EPC is also considering a number of proposals for revisions and changes to the current Division I. This includes a living document submitted by Re-Rad.
The EPC itself consists of two staff members, three faculty members from each of the larger schools of NS, SS, and HACU, and two faculty members each from CS and IA. It also consists of student representatives from each of the schools and one at-large student representative. However, at this time up to three of the schools (SS, IA, and HACU) do not have students elected to the board. The at-large student member has also not been selected.
Students can get involved in this process indirectly by attending school meetings– meetings held by each of the five schools– where they can give input regarding their Hampshire experiences and have influence on their school representatives. Students can also communicate with their EPC representatives directly by appointment or through e-mail. Students can, of course, have more direct influence by becoming members of the EPC.
The EPC is expected to give an interim report at the next faculty meeting during the first week of December. EPC members will likely present faculty with a final report on Division I that will include suggested changes at a faculty meeting that may take place in April.
By Kathryn Solorzano Lowell