Open Time

Institutional Change Progress Report and Change Committee Response to Community Time: Establish Open Time on Fridays (Cabinet Recommendation 4.1)

Cabinet Charge: Recommendation 4.1 of the Cabinet for Institutional Change Report states:

In order to come together as a community, there must be community time. There is currently no time set aside for enabling service to the university and holding university‐wide activities. We believe having such a time is not only practical but also vital to the development of understanding among the community. We recommend that a weekly three‐hour block of time be designated (such as Fridays 11‐2) when no classes shall meet. This time period will be used for university‐wide activities such as general interest lectures, professional development activities, plenary meetings of the Senate, and other university‐interest events to be arranged approximately once a month. When such events are not scheduled, this time will ease the coordination and inclusion of faculty and students at meetings and other university service activities. We recommend all nonessential offices to close during university‐wide activities to maximize participation.

Progress to date: A task force convened by AVP Colleen Mullery is studying the implementation of this recommendation. In late September 2010 the Institutional Research and Planning (IRP) administered a "Community Time Survey" to faculty, staff, and students. In summary, there was ‘overwhelming' support for a community time. Respondents indicated that they would be most likely to attend a monthly rather than bi-weekly or weekly events. However, there is concern as to availability and purpose of the free time.

Change Steering Committee Response:

January 2011 Response:

The Change Steering Committee accepts the Open Time sub-committee report and recommendations and believes it is a good idea to initiate the pilot event time to determine whether it will be a successful ongoing initiative. We would like a recommendation from this sub-committee concerning who should plan and implement this initial open time pilot. In addition, we recognize that not everyone can attend such an event and request that this sub-committee revisits the Cabinet's original ideas and also brainstorms other ideas that encourage more collegiality on campus and report these ideas to the Change Steering Committee.

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