Board of Trustees Meeting Held on February 8
I wish to provide a short summary of key items that transpired at the Board of Trustees meeting held on February 8. The business meeting included the approval of several action items and presentations on enrollment management, educational planning focusing on teaching with technology, and a report by the Chair of Trustees, Bob Finocchio, on his visit with Superior General Adolfo Nicolás, S.J.
Dennis Jacobs, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, gave the trustees an update on progress towards elaborating our educational vision and honing strategic goals and objectives. In addition, Provost Jacobs articulated a vision for the use of technology in the Jesuit education we offer. Kirk Hanson, Executive Director of the Markkula Center, joined Provost Jacobs to present the Markkula Center’s initiatives that leverage technology to enhance teaching.
Mike Sexton reported that total freshmen applications for fall 2013 reached nearly 15,000, showing a 4.8% increase over last year. The enrollment target is 1275 students. In addition to the Early Action and Regular decision option, this year Santa Clara offered a first-ever binding Early Decision option. Indicators suggest that the overall acceptance rate will be competitive and selective to reach the enrollment target.
Bob Finocchio summarized for the trustees a special meeting he attended with Adolfo Nicolás, S.J., Superior General of the Society of Jesus, in Rome. Bob and other representatives of U.S. Jesuit colleges and universities were invited by Fr. Nicolás to offer him their perspectives on the state of Jesuit higher education in the United States. Topics on academic life and Jesuit mission, campus culture, Jesuit presence, service to the local church, and service and solidarity with the disadvantaged were discussed for Fr. Nicolás’s reflection in preparation for his visit to the U.S. in October.
Other business at the meeting included the approval of several important action items. The Trustees
- approved a balanced budget for 2013-2014;
- approved two new degree programs in the Leavey School of Business, Master of Science in Entrepreneurship and a Master of Science in Finance; and
- approved the proposed changes to the Faculty Handbook regarding grievance committee timeframe and reconsideration process in lecturer and senior lecturer decisions.
In addition to the presentations and approval of action items, the trustees received reports from trustee committee chairs on their respective committees; Patti Boitano, Chair of the Board of Regents; Barbara Molony, president of the Faculty Senate Council; and Jenna Saso, president of Associated Student Government. Following the meeting, trustees were joined by students and Faculty Senate members for lunch.
The season opener for the Women's Softball team will be a special one as they host University of the Pacific for a doubleheader at the new SCU Bronco Softball Stadium on February 9. The program's first-ever game at the new stadium will be at 11:00 a.m. followed by a second game at 1:00 p.m. In all, 25 softball games will be played at home this season on the Mission campus, capped off by hosting San Diego (May 4-5) and Stanford (May 7).
Our admission prospects are looking very good as the enrollment management team is reviewing a robust set of regular decision applications that were due January 7. The combined total of early and regular decision applications reached 14,945 applications, an increase of 4% over last year. From the pool of admitted students we are targeting an enrollment of 1275 students for the incoming freshman class.
The early applicant pool had a strong showing with 4,677 applications received by the November 1 deadline. This pool included applicants taking advantage of the Early Action and the newly implemented Early Decision options. The combined total of early applicants represented 9% more than last year's single Early Action pool. We were pleased with the outcome of the first-ever binding Early Decision option, under which 85 students have deposited.
Event Planning Office
In December, the Event Planning Office (EPO) staff moved from the Benson Memorial Center to the Walsh Administration Building, and is now part of the President’s Office staff. Karrie Grasser, Assistant Vice President of University Protocol and Events, and her team of Elizabeth Carter, Mary Johnson, Blake Malcolm and Stephanie Woitte, will continue to provide the University with event planning leadership, advisory support, and services that advance University-wide event development and production management. In the new organization, the EPO staff will continue to manage Undergraduate and Graduate Commencements, the Golden Circle Theatre Party, and staffing for the Board of Fellows. Since joining the President’s Office, they have taken on additional responsibilities including staffing for both the Board of Trustees and the Board of Regents.
The EPO staff is also tasked with developing a set of University-wide standards and protocol, which will help ensure that all events exhibit a level of consistency and quality showcasing Santa Clara’s excellence. Further details will be forthcoming as the team transitions to the new organization and their new duties. They are a welcome addition to the President’s Office, and I look forward to their continued support and assistance in University events across campus.
What's Ahead on My Calendar
- January 26-February 2 - Meetings and alumni event in Hong Kong
- February 7 - Men's Basketball v. St. Mary's
- February 8 - Board of Trustees Meeting
- February 9 - Golden Circle Theatre Party
- February 12 - State of the University
- February 13 - Ash Wednesday
- February 18 - President's Day
- February 22-23 - Family Weekend
- February 25 - Joint Meeting of California and Oregon Provinces on Higher Education
- February 26-27 - Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) Presidents Meeting