June 10, 2004
1-2 p.m., Mary Maples Dunn Conference Room
(Submitted by Marti Hobbes, Approved July 8, 2004)
Present: Kim Allen, Adrianne Andrews,
Adrian Beaulieu, Suzanne Beaumier, Joseph Bialek, Nancy Brady, Chris
Carr Hill, Janice Cole, Marti Hobbes, Kate Kilpatrick, Patty Kimura,
Karen LeHouiller, Merrilyn Lewis, Jinny Mason, Laura Matta, Patricia
Rist, Bill Sheehan, Xinh Spangler, Mike Washut, Tara Zidonik
Excused: Terrilyn Cooley Calloway, Karen Hebert, Linda LaFlam, Steve
Monteiro, Sam Rush,
Guests: Sandy Bycenski, Patricia Swan
I. Minutes to May 13 meeting were voted on and approved
with minor changes.
II. Reps elected the following persons as Staff Council
officers for 2004-05:
Chair, Merrilyn Lewis
Vice Chair and Parliamentarian, Kim Allen
Co-Secretaries, Nancy Brady and Marti Hobbes
Treasurer, Jan Cole
III. 2004-05 Committee Selection
Merrilyn reminded representatives that all must serve on at least
one of the four standing committees: activities, communication,
nominations & elections, and/or personnel policy. In addition,
reps may join the ad hoc diversity committee.
After a committee sign-up sheet was circulated, committee membership
was determined to be as follows:
Steering: Merrilyn Lewis, Kim Allen, Nancy Brady,
Marti Hobbes, Jan Cole, Chris Carr Hill, Karen Hebert, Linda LaFlam,
Sandy Bycenski, Sabrina Marsh
Nominations & Elections: Chris Carr Hill, Chair;
Kim Allen; Laura Matta; Bill Sheehan
Communications: Karen Hebert, chair; Nancy Brady;
Kate Kilpatrick; Linda Rainville; Bill Sheehan; Xinh Spangler; Tara
Personnel Policy: Sandy Bycenski, chair; Kim Allen,
Adrianne Andrews, Adrian Beaulieu, Joseph Bialek; Chris Carr Hill;
Janice Cole; Karen LeHouiller; Merrilyn Lewis; Jinny Mason; Pat
Rist; Sam Rush
Activities: Linda LaFlam, co-chair; Suzanne Beaumier;
Terrilyn Cooley Calloway (As of 7/8/04 Sabrina Marsh has offered
to co-chair with Linda LaFlam.)
Diversity (ad hoc): Adrianne Andrews, Patty Kimura,
Steve Monteiro, Mike Washut, Laura Matta
IV. Committee Reports
Merrilyn reiterated that to save time during the full Staff Council
meetings, our current policy is for committees to submit their minutes
to the co-secretaries prior to each meeting, so that the committee
minutes can be circulated and read by Staff Council reps. BEFORE
Merrilyn suggested, however, that this year, we feature one committee
at each full Staff Council meeting, whereby the topics and issues
for that committee can be discussed by the full Staff Council. Everyone
seemed to think this was a good idea.
Patricia Swan, 2003-04 Staff Council rep and member of the ad hoc
diversity committee, presented ideas for diversity activities in
2004-05. She's hoping that the other standing committees would collaborate
with diversity to implement the planned programs. The planned programs
include a staff cultural history exhibit, tentatively scheduled
for Oct. 13, and a talk by Randolph Bromery, former Springfield
College president. In the spring, they're planning a campus-wide
celebration of family, with discussion of the different types of
families, including a model for what a family looks like. They're
hoping to highlight the event in the Council Chronicle.
Merrilyn commended Patricia and her fellow 2003-04 diversity committee
members for their thoughtful and creative planning.
Personnel Policy (PPC)
Merrilyn received a letter from a staff person asking whether Human
Resources plans to reevaluate Smith's dental insurance policy. She
referred the letter to Personnel Policy for follow-up.
Nominations & Elections (N&E)
Janet Spongberg submitted a letter of resignation to Merrilyn Lewis
citing staff cutbacks in her department as her reason for not being
able to serve as planned. N&E has asked Nanci Young if she would
be willing to serve in Janet's stead. (As of 7/8/04, Nanci Young
declined and N&E is waiting to hear from another staff person
they've asked to serve.)
Solicited the group for topic ideas for the Sept. 22 community forum.
Some ideas they're considering include an update of the changes
at Smith six weeks after the official layoff date; i.e., how has
the job bank worked, and a training session by CDO director Barbara
Reinhold re looking for opportunities in change.
Merrilyn thought it important for those whose positions were eliminated
to understand that the decision was based on the position, not on
the person holding the position.
Adrianne Andrews thought a better way of looking at it was that
the administration's decisions affected both the position AND the
Adrianne also remarked on a kind of "survivor's guilt"
that is often felt by employees whose jobs remain intact.
Someone mentioned that the Employee Assistance Program is for everyone,
not just the persons who will be losing their jobs, but also for
the staff members who remain. The aftermath of the layoffs will
not be a short term thing, morale and workload issues will continue.
Chris Carr Hill asked what IS the new Smith?
Tara Zidonik said her experience at other workplaces shows that
civility is suffering. She suggested a forum showing good behavior.
Patty Kimura said it's important to keep the impact of the cutbacks
in perspective: out of a total of 950 employees, there were 19 layoffs
and 6 reductions. And the Organizational Effectiveness Assessments
that guided the decisions, made it a priority to reduce and reorganize
the workload, NOT to divide it.
Merrilyn asked Patty whether SAMS plans to follow up with managers
in the next few months to find out how the staff cutbacks are affecting
Adrianne also asked Patty how a follow-up workload study among managers
might be implemented.
Adrianne said based on her observations, the ramifications of the
layoffs in the early 1990s, are still being felt today. She asked
how managers can be held accountable to monitor the impact of the
reorganization efforts on their staff.
Patty said the mechanism for this kind of monitoring and feedback
is the OEA, a program that came about as a result of a recommendation
by Staff Council.
Someone thought it would be useful for Lianne Sullivan-Crowley to
present an overview of the successes that resulted from various
OEAs, like improvements in the Admissions office.