May 7, 2003
2:30 p.m. in the Mary Maples Dunn Room at Pierce Hall (Approved
at the June 11, 2003 meeting)
Attending: Cristen Abrams, Kim Allen,
Stacey Anasazi, Cyndee Button, Connie Dragon, Serena Harris, Chris
Carr Hill, Susan Hollingsworth, Patty Kimura, Karen LeHouiller Merrilyn
Lewis, Laura Matta, Steve Monteiro, Sam Rush, Patricia Swan, Michael
Washut and Tara Zidonik
Excused: Lakisha Coppedge, Gary Duffy, Alicia Guidotti, Anne Marie
Janice McDowell, Dianne Mikucki, Angela Musiak, Janice Nye and Laura
Guests: Sandy Bycenski
Patty Kimura called the meeting to order at 2:40 p.m. Patty said
this was the last full meeting of the current staff council. She
announced she had arranged for staff council to go on a tour of
the campus center on May 14th at 3:30 p.m. Since it's an active
construction site, folks were warned to not wear open-toed shoes.
1. REVIEW MINUTES
The minutes of the April meeting were approved.
2. COMMITTEE REPORTS: February committee minutes
were sent out prior to this meeting. The following are additional
comments or responses to questions.
A. Nominations and Elections:
The committee will contact the newly elected members to make sure
they are still willing to serve. If so, they will be invited to
the June 11th meeting.
Merrilyn suggested that once new staff council members are announced,
an e-mail go out to all of staff council reminding folks that they
need not be a staff council members to serve on a committee. That
could also be announced in the Council Chronicle.
It was asked if retirees could still be active committee members?
A discussion ensured and it was decided that since retirees still
have access to campus, they could still play a role on committees.
B. Personnel Policy Committee:
Early Childhood Education
The committee has heard some objections from the Smith community
about lack of flexibility in the hours and about the high cost of
the program. It was explained that the Infant/Toddler program is
2, 3 or 5 days with hours 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m. or 8 a.m-5 p.m. and the
Preschool program are all mornings 8 a.m.-12 p.m. or 3, 4, 5 afternoons
Lianne explained that the Smith childcare programs are so popular
that parents need to reserve space and prepay for that space. Lianne
also offered some perspective on the need for the program to pay
for itself w/ limited subsidizing by the college, especially in
the current climate.
Internal Mobility at Smith
The program is only for regular term employees, not limited term
or campaign jobs. It is designed to create career development and
mobility within Smith. Underlying reason limited term employees
are not considered for it, has to do with the goal of critically
assessing the need for each vacant position in an effort to reduce
staff through attrition rather than lay-offs. The response has been
good; a lot of applications have been received at Human Resources.
College Relations and Campus Center are in the interview process.
New Employee Orientation
The employee orientation committee invited several supervisors to
their last meeting to discuss the New Staff Orientation Checklist.
The supervisors appreciated being involved and had many good ideas,
which will be added to the list. One of them also suggested that
an exit checklist would be very helpful.
We had a brief discussion about the budget issues. Hopefully jobs
will be eliminated thru attrition; so forced staff reduction will
be minimal. We discussed that all Smith staff need to rethink their
work processes, eliminating unnecessary procedures.
Multi Rater 5 College Pilot
The committee discussed the Individual Development Planning for
supervisors and Managers. It was well received by some. Volunteers
were asked to participate in the program to assist in determining
the effectiveness of this multi-rater feedback tool. This program
is to help the managers learn more about their strengths and identify
some opportunities for the managers to improve their effectiveness.
The tool will be/is being used specifically for developmental purposes
with short and long-term goals. Eventually, it will be in place
throughout the college, but it is initiating with senior and middle
It was announced that ITS created a liaison list rule so that if
an office liaison is out of the office, the e-mail will still get
distributed to folks on their distribution list.
The next meeting is May 8th.
Cinco de May took place on May 5th. Merrilyn said kudos to the committee
members that organized it as it was a fantastic event.
Bus trip to New York City went well and they only had a couple of
E. Ad Hoc Diversity Committee:
Met with President Christ and refreshed her on study circles. Her
parting words were "Let me know if there is anything I can
do to help."
The Committee asked for Staff Council's vote of confidence to use
these points as a framework for the ground rules:
How do we rethink our work?
How do we build and foster a culture that views change as positive?
Action steps need to be drawn.
A coalition needs to be formed and it must be a diverse group to
get the most credibility. Patty asked that anyone who was interested
in participating or knew of a colleague who might be to contact
either Merrilyn or Patty.
Due to the voluntary separation package being offered, Smith stands
to lose employees with years of service and history so it was suggested
they attempt to involve retirees.
Staff Council voted in support of the ad hoc committee moving forward
on the inception of study circles.
3. MORE NEW/OLD BUSINESS:
A discussion ensued about continuing the model of submitting committee
reports prior to the monthly meetings so there is adequate time
for discussion of new matters. Merrilyn said she liked a suggestion
made previously that we spend a portion of each meeting on diversity,
and she was wondering if people were willing to have 15 to 20 minutes
set aside each month to invite speakers to the meetings?
She feels it would help inform staff council members, who could
then help the greater Smith community be informed.
She said that she was suggesting that the new Steering Committee
be charged with scheduling those speakers each quarter. She then
asked if the current staff council wanted to make these recommendations,
even though it was pointed out that the new staff council would
be the ones who would have to follow through with them? We voted
to recommend these suggestions to the new staff council.
Serena will send out a list of the new members of Staff Council
before the June meeting.
Patty thanked everyone for their hard work during her tenure on
Staff Council. The Council in return thanked Patty for her many
wonderful contributions during her years as President. The Staff
Council meeting adjourned at 3:45 p.m.
The next Staff Council meeting will be held on Wednesday, June 11th,
from 1:00-3:00 p.m. in the Neilson Browsing Room. It will be a joint
meeting of the incoming and outgoing members.
Chris Carr Hill, Co-Secretary of Staff Council