Dartmouth's Daily Blog
News, commentary, criticism and praise for the College on the Hill, enlivened with history, culture and travel when we feel so moved.
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Progress at the College of William & Mary
Joy and good tidings from Virginia and the College of William & Mary: they are working toward converting their Board of Trustees into one elected by the alumni.
The majority of members on the College of William and Mary’s Board of Visitors would be elected by alumni, not appointed by the governor, under a bill proposed in the state House of Delegates.A best practice, indeed.
Del. Robert Marshall, R-Prince William, said he crafted House Bill No. 427 to boost the role of alumni in overseeing affairs specifically at the College of William and Mary because there are “more problems with the governance of that school than the other (state) schools combined.”
This is a friendly juncture at which to pause and wonder: which constituency, exactly, ought to form the body politic of an institution of higher learning? Dartmouth, along with most other institutions, long ago selected the alumni body. This idea is occasionally attacked by people who—through some misapprehension of the facts—believe that “alumni” compose a single-minded monolith. Of course this is not so: they form an extremely capable deliberative body. Witness Dartmouth’s highly competitive—and sometimes close—Trustee elections.
But, if not the alumni, what are the other options? One thinks of the non-administrative employees of the college—the faculty—but they are by definition in a conflict of interest. One thinks of the administrators themselves, but that is akin to a man being his own boss. No supervisory pressure at all in that situation. One contemplates the studentry for the job, but they are extremely few in number, are rather mercurial, and are unduly obedient to the trends and fashions of their four years at college than is healthy. And, what’s more, they by definition lack the sort of real-world experience that counts in governance.
What more prudent body is there, really, than the alumni? They are educated, world-wise, and properly interested: their dollars and their children both go to the institution, yet their own prosperity is not predicated upon college policy. This makes the alumni interested but, unlike faculty and administrators, purely interested.
August 14, 2013
Breaking: Of Crips and Bloods and Memories of Ghetto Parties
History repeats itself, first as tragedy and then as farce, or sometimes it just repeats itself. From the New York Times on November 30, 1998: At Dartmouth College, white students at a ”ghetto party” dressed…
June 25, 2013
Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson’s War on Students Part (2/2)
Part 1, Part 2 Today’s post again recounts the events that befell the Freshman. However, the content of the Hanover Police department report reproduced in this space yesterday is supplemented by information from my own…
October 18, 2009
When Love Beckoned in 52nd Street
We were at San Francisco’s BIX last evening, enjoying prosecco, cheese, and a bit of music. A full year of inhabitation in Northern California has unraveled to me no decent venue for proper lounging, but…
October 9, 2009
D Afraid of a Little Competish
So our colleague and Dartblog writer Joe Asch informed me that the D has rejected our cunning advertising campaign. Uh-oh. The Dartmouth is widely known as a breeding ground for instant New York Times successes,…
September 4, 2009
How Regents Should Reign
As Dartmouth alumni proceed through the legal hoops necessary to defuse a Board-packing plan—which put in unhappy desuetude an historic 1891 Agreement between alumni and the College guaranteeing a half-democratically-elected Board of Trustees—it strikes one…
August 29, 2009
Election Reform Study Committee
If you are an alum of the College on the Hill, you may have received a number of e-mails of late beseeching your input for a new arm of the College’s Alumni Control Apparatus called…
- The Dartmouth College Case
- 2007 Trustee Election
- Dartmouth Constitution
- Sunday Morning Sinatra
- The Indian Wars
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