September 27, 2005      
Planning Days

On September 1st and 2nd, various senior administrators, Deans, the Director of the School of Education and several managers attended one or two full-day planning sessions. These meetings gave individuals an opportunity to share information about their areas of responsibility and to plan not just for the coming year, but also for the next few years as an early step in the University's strategic planning process.

A number of presentations were given and topics discussed and debated included (underlined titles - presentations are availble on the Bishop's website under Principal's Office):
  • The School of Education
  • Library/Learning Commons
  • Research Office
  • Bishop's University Foundation
  • International Student Office
  • Continuing Education: Ms. Meesen discussed some of the challenges and opportunities facing the Continuing Education Department. Most agreed there is a fair amount of duplication of academic administrative work, and the University needs to revisit the role Continuing Education plays at Bishop's.
  • Orientation Week and Town/Gown relations: Mr. Stevenson gave an overview of the activities for the week and the extensive measures taken to ensure a successful Orientation Week.
  • Campus Master Plan: Mr. Skelton informed the group that the survey from last spring is with a consultant, and further discussions with the campus community should begin in October.
  • Financial Budgets for 2004-05 and 2005-06: Mr. McLaughlin reported that the University had a slight surplus budget for the 2004-05 fiscal year bringing our accumulated deficit to $400,000. The projection for 2005-06 is a deficit of $1.6 million due in large part to the University's commitment to paying the pension deficit.
  • Health & Safety Committee: First meeting of the committee was scheduled for September 12. The committee will soon form four sub-committees: Workplace Safety; Accident Prevention; Campus Safety; and Wellness.
  • Staff Union Negotiations: see earlier article of this e-newsletter.
  • Property purchases off-campus; Mr. McLaughlin discussed the strategic purchases of the old Co-op building, in addition to 16 & 18 College Street.
  • Renovations on-campus: Mr. McLaughlin reported that renovations of Centennial Theatre may begin as early as January 2006, thanks in part to a grant of $559,000 from the Federal Government. The renovation of Divinity House may qualify for a new provincial funding program of $400,000 per year (for a maximum of three years, to be matched by the University) designated to capital improvements. The target start date for the one-year renovation project is June 2006.

    Professor Bequet, Dean of the Williams School, presented research and observations about the current state of post secondary education in Canada. You can view Prof. Bequet's presentation online on the Principal's Office section of our website.

    Attendees were also encouraged to read "The Future City of Intellect", a 26 page document published by Stanford University Press. A few copies are available in the Library for those who wish to read this enlightening paper.

    These meetings will be held two or three times per year. They provide an excellent forum for Deans and managers to meet, listen and discuss concerns or plans which affect the Bishop's community, ensuring that actions and developments for the year will be cohesive and reflect the strategic plans being formulated.
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