Smith College Staff Council
February 6, 2002 (Approved at the March 6, 2002 meeting)
A meeting of the full Staff Council was held on February 6th at 2:15 p.m. in the Mary Maples Dunn Conference Room in Pierce Hall.
Attending: Stacey Anasazi, Cristen Abrams, Jack Begleiter, Cyndee Button, Sandy Bycenski, Lakisha Coppedge, Patty Hayes, Chris Carr Hill, Mimi Lempart, Bob Lesko, Merrilyn Lewis, Ann Mayo, Janice McDowell, Sam Rush, Stephanie Schoen, and Bill Sheehan
Excused: Carla Coffey, Patrick Diggins, Lisa Dwinell, Alicia Guidotti, Serena Harris, Patty Kimura, Anne-Marie LaFosse, Steve Monteiro, Patricia Rist, and Michael Washut
I. REVIEW MINUTES
Sam Rush chaired the meeting, as Patty Kimura was unable to attend. Sam opened the meeting at 2:15 p.m. and asked for everyone to review the January 9th minutes before the council moved for approval. The minutes were approved without change.
II. COMMITTEE REPORTS
Janice McDowell reported that Patty Kimura attended their last meeting. The budget was discussed and Patty reminded everyone that all committee budgets are part of the Staff Council budget and committees, using their expertise, should design and send proposals for use to the entire council for final approval. A discussion was held about thinking about new activities to offer that reflect the Council's commitment to diversity and inclusion, and the committee will continue to look for new opportunities.
February 12th starts the Have A Heart food drive and collection boxes have been set up across the campus.
The next meeting is on February 7th.
Cristen reported that the committee has not met since November. She had hoped to meet with Patty Kimura and the Activities Committee to get a clearer idea of how the two committees can work together more effectively, but that meeting hasn't happened yet. A lingering question among the committee is what their role is in the overall mission of Staff Council to further enhance a sense of community among staff.
The next Lunch and Learn series is set for February 12th at the Gamut showcasing crafters demonstrating their skills. Cristen will contact Joanne Cannon Carlson to make sure reminder notices get sent out.
Sam reported that a hard copy of the Did You Know sheet has been sent to the department liaisons with the hope that they will post it or make copies for staff members. Sam was asked to send it as an attachment to all of Staff Council.
C. Nominations and Elections:
Serena was not present to report. Sam asked if the council could start spreading the word about upcoming elections and Patty Hayes suggested it be mentioned in the next Council Chronicle. Sam asked Cristen to put on the Communications Committee's agenda finalization of the list that states each staff council members' area of representation and what groups they should be reporting to on campus.
D. Personnel Policy:
Sandy Bycenski reported that the PPC met with Lianne Sullivan-Crowley on January 10th and discussed:
Workload Focus Group: Focus Groups voiced similar comments that the distribution of workload is uneven, but employee morale on the whole is very positive. One comment from the PPC committee was how discouraging it is to be overworked in a job and leave, only to then have the job upgraded. Romney Associates has not yet issued a report.
Classification and Compensation: Lianne spoke briefly about the Advisory Task Force. The committee will be discussing the existing Position Description and Questionnaire. Because the process of filling out PDQ is very confusing and cumbersome, the task force has been asked to see how it can be revised. The task force will be meeting on January 21st.
360 Review: A brief discussion was held about the 360 Review. After reading the material, it was discovered that this type of review is done peer to peer as well as staff to supervisor. Since there is a need to find out more about the process and the benefits, the committee will meet with Carol Bevan-Bogart, who has some experience with the process from a previous employer.
Employee Concerns: Lianne told the committee that if any employee has questions about HR issues or payroll problems they should call Patty Kimura, who will help solve the problem or direct the employee to the appropriate person.
Childcare Committee: According to Lianne, Charles Staelin, Chair of the Childcare Committee, has submitted a report to senior staff, which includes a 5-year projection based on their recent discussions and surveys.
III. NEW/OLD BUSINESS
Council Chronicle: Previously announced at the Steering Committee meeting, Patty Hayes said that she and Eric Weld are resigning as co-editors of the Council Chronicle. Since Patty has worked on the Chronicle for a long time and feels the current design is a success, she might be willing to continue to help with the design as there are not a lot of people on campus with design backgrounds, but she will not act as co-editor. Patty Kimura asked Sam to convey that she wants all of staff council to brainstorm on the future of the Chronicle. Should it stay in the same format? Should there be fewer issues per year? Or does it take the form of a one or two page monthly printout? Bill said he would like the Communications Committee to discuss this issue and give their opinion as to the function and role of the Chronicle. Mimi said it seems as if we need some sort of apprentice to work with Patty. A discussion was had about whether the Communications Committee's role will be to just help spread the word that the Chronicle needs a new editor, or take on all the responsibilities of producing the Chronicle. Patty Hayes said she feels it's important for an editor to be on Staff Council, as attending the meetings is a key component. Stacey suggested we put a notice in the next Chronicle that we need a new editor and do a survey asking for feedback about whether the Chronicle in its current form is meeting the needs of staff. Patty Hayes said that she and Eric hardly ever get any feedback about the Chronicle.
Lunch with Carol T. Christ: The Council discussed the January 28th lunch with Carol Christ and were pleased to have had the opportunity to meet the new president. Some suggestions were made for ways to improve future events of this type.
Art on the Fence/Archives: Stacey reported that Jill St. Coeur and Rita Singler from the Theatre Department have been extremely helpful in helping the ad hoc committee take the Cut From the Same Cloth strips and arrange them into a quilt, which Rita and Jill have already started sewing. The quilt can easily be archived and exhibited on an anniversary date.
Community Forum ad hoc committee update: The committee has not met yet so no report was made.
Spring Diversity Training ad hoc committee update: The committee has not met yet so no report was made.
Fragrance Free ad hoc committee: The committee had not met yet so no report was made. Merrilyn Lewis said she has a colleague who is sensitive to fragrances and she would check with that person for advice.
The next Staff Council meeting is on Wednesday, March 6th at 2:15 p.m. in the MMD Conference Room.
Chris Carr Hill, Co-Secretary