Follow up meeting regarding faculty health insurance

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After weeks of discord with the administration over changes in the health insurance plan, a lack of transparency and shared decision-making, DePauw faculty may be making some inroads.

Faculty Chair Howard Brooks released a letter Wednesday outlining the results of an Oct. 12th meeting between faculty members and the Academic Affairs Committee of the Board of Trustees. In that letter, he included a statement from Board Chair Kathy Vrabeck, who acknowledged the tension brought on by the Board’s directive that President Mark McCoy alter the University’s operating model in order to “ensure future financial sustainability.”

In her statement, she said the Board would “continue to enhance our governance model’s inclusive nature.”

Vrabeck also announced that McCoy has requested that the Academic Affairs Committee work with Vice-President of Academic Affairs Anne Harris and with Brooks to ensure that faculty leadership have opportunities to engage with Board committees.

Two meetings will be held this week to share with the DePauw community further results of that meeting Oct. 12 between some faculty members and the academic affairs committee of the DePauw Board of Trustees.

“It’s a time to share with the community,” Brooks says of the meetings. He says the meeting agenda will include the financial stability of the University, the financial and curricular impact of the Gold Commitment and the reoccuring bias incidents, among other things.

As for his hopes of what the meetings will accomplish, Brooks says, “I do hope that we seriously talk with each other. Students and administrators come and go, but it’s the faculty and trustees that have these lifelong commitments to the University. The more those two groups can interact directly and meet with each other, the better. And that’s one of the goals: better communication.”  

President Mark McCoy agrees, saying that collaboration between groups needs to happen. “Everyone on campus has a different responsibility, and we have to work together for the good of the institution,” he said.  

The meetings will be held in the Union Building ballroom at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 31 and on Thursday, Nov. 1 at 11:30 a.m.