Board of Trustees in brief
Highlights from the December 7-8 Board of Trustees meeting
Chair Barb Palk recognized recent recipients of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medals: Principal Daniel Woolf, Steven Liss, Vice-Principal (Research), and trustees David Grace and Sarah Jane Dumbrille. Ms Palk also congratulated Kimberly Woodhouse, Dean, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, on her appointment to the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.
During the closed session, the Board appointed trustees Toby Abramsky, Karyn Brooks, Bob Burge, Nick Francis, Kelley McKinnon, Bruce Mitchell, Barb Palk, Don Raymond and Dan Tisch to the joint Board and Senate committee to review the principalship. Chancellor David Dodge will chair the committee.
Principal’s strategic update
Principal Daniel Woolf gave a progress report on his 2012-13 goals. A majority of the objectives are on track for completion with slow progress on a few items. None of the goals are in danger of not being completed.
• The principal highlighted his constructive contact with student leaders and working with Senators on contentious matters. He wants to do more over the next several months to increase the executive’s engagement with the university community.
• Reform of the non-academic discipline system is complete, and the review and implementation of the University Alcohol Policy is on track.
• Implementation of the new budget model within the 2013-14 budget process is on track. Updates on the new model and the budget process have been communicated widely and supported by visits to faculties.
• The Initiative Campaign was launched successfully and the Office of Advancement has created a parents’ giving program.
• Governance reform is progressing reasonably well with reforms of Senate and Board committees on track and restructuring of University Council moving ahead. Principal Woolf hopes more can be done in 2013 to create a mutual understanding by Board and Senate of each other’s roles and responsibilities and to build on work begun at the September Board/Senate retreat.
• Planning continues for the safe return of Fall Reunions.
• An international strategy will be submitted to Principal Woolf by the end of 2012. The plan for attracting international graduate students is still in development.
In addition, he noted that there is some uncertainty around the proposed strategic mandate statement in light of recent political developments at the provincial level. However, the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities and the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) continue to evaluate the statements.
Provost Alan Harrison updated Board on several items including:
• The kickoff of the Campus Master Plan.
• The appointment of Laeeque Daneshmend as the new deputy provost.
• The establishment of a task force to examine Queen’s student learning experience.
• The creation of a group to oversee the development of an enrolment plan for the university
• The ongoing work to implement the new budget model, which promises great transparency and strong incentives for faculties and schools. As chair of the Provost’s Advisory Committee on the Budget, Provost Harrison issued an update that was endorsed by the committee and posted on the Provost’s website.
Campaign progress report
Overall campaign and fiscal year fundraising results are on track. $313 million had been raised toward the campaign goal of $500 million as of October 31. For the fiscal year, $37.5 million of the $60 million goal had been raised. At this time last year, the university had received donations totaling $11.3 million. Tom Harris, Vice-Principal (Advancement), attributed the improvement to the generosity of benefactors, momentum of the Initiative Campaign and inspired efforts of the principal, deans, department heads and the Advancement team.
Senator Nancy McCormack provided the update. Senate has appointed its representatives to the committee that will review the principalship. A Senate committee is now reviewing the process for the suspension of enrolment in programs, which generated the request for the opinion from Justic Iacobucci. Senate approved a proposal to introduce a Master of Management Analytics and a request for formal centre status for the Surveillance Studies Centre.
Alma Mater Society President Doug Johnson emphasized four items from his written report:
• The AMS continues to work with campus and community partners to develop an innovation ecosystem at Queen’s and in Kingston.
• The student government has led a dialogue to address the issue of fraternities and sororities on campus. The AMS executive has taken a strong stance against lifting the ban on student membership in the groups because of their exclusionary nature.
• The AMS executive is pleased with the final outcome of the alcohol working group and is supportive of the final policy.
• President Johnson said some students have expressed concerns about the proposal to construct two new residence buildings on campus before an enrolment plan is complete. He said the AMS looks forward to being part of the university’s task force on enrolment planning.
Mathew Scribner, President, Society of Professional and Graduate Students, remarked that SGPS members are contributing to Library and Archives Master Plan (LAMP) process. They have stressed the need for more and different kinds of study spaces on campus. He also stressed that the university must protect and expand spaces on campus that make older students feel at home.
Audit and Risk committee
The Board approved:
• The Health and Safety Policy Statement unchanged from last year. Trustee Daniel Tisch suggested adding elements of health promotion to the statement in the future.
• The Environmental Management Policy Statement unchanged from last year. Trustee Tony Gkotsis suggested the potential inclusion of statements regarding climate change and Caroline Davis, Vice-Principal (Finance and Administration), advised that the statement did not include material from the Climate Action Plan at this time because work is ongoing.
• The Queen’s University Fair Dealing policy that governs the use of copyrighted material.
• The appointment of KPMG as the university’s external auditors.
• Provost Harrison provided an enrolment update. Overall, full-time enrolment in first-year and upper-years is slightly above planned levels in first-entry programs (Arts and Science, Engineering and Applied Science, Commerce and Nursing). Total full-time and part-time enrolment at Queen’s has increased by approximately 1.5 per cent, or about 300 students, over 2011-12.
• The Board unanimously approved the project to build two new residence buildings to be located on Stuart Street and Leonard Field providing approximately 550 beds in total. The Board also approved $70 million for the project financed through long-term debt.
• The Board approved the revised signing authority on investment-related transactions to reflect appointments and changes in position titles.
• The Board ratified formal centre status for the Surveillance Studies Centre.
The Board approved naming dedications and received for information the annual safe disclosure report, the promotion to professor report, the research report, the DBRS rating report, the semi-annual audit report and the quarterly reports from the Advancement, Investment and Pension committees.
The Board reconvened on Saturday, December 8 to discuss:
• The university's draft strategic framework,
• The top 10 risk identified in the Queen’s Strategic Risk Register
• PARTEQ’s annual report
The agenda is posted on the University Secretariat website.