2011 TC Pressroom
Teachers College, Columbia University
Teachers College Columbia University

TC Media Center from the Office of External Affairs

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TC Community Town Meeting

Joseph Brosnan, Vice President for Development and External Affairs, discussed the Capital Campaign, and presented some background as to what has happened thus far through the Financial Planning Committee. In Spring 1998, the Committee finalized its decision on the spending priorities for the $140 million expected to be raised during the Campaign.

Brosnan said $29 million would be earmarked for scholarships in order to attract and retain students. The physical plant would receive $30 million of Campaign funds. Endowments for professorships and chairs would total $9 million and $3 million will be dedicated to professional development for faculty.

With all the technological changes taking place, and corporations challenging institutions of higher education through providing non-traditional courses, an innovation fund of $8 million will be established to address those concerns. Current on-campus technology needs will receive $6 million.

Student-life programs will receive $6 million to provide better services to students in areas such as residence halls and accessibility needs. Ongoing needs and programs will receive $40 million, which includes the annual giving program, to support the budget during the Campaign.While the Campaign is in what is known as "the quiet phase," Brosnan said that $50 million has been raised to date. That figure provides the assurance, he added, that it will be possible to raise the $140 million goal. "Next fall we will publicly announce the Campaign," Brosnan said.Vice President for Finance and Administration Fred Schnur discussed the ongoing renovations of the College buildings. "It takes a long time to see the results as we address 20 to 30 years of neglect," he said.

The scaffolding around Grace Dodge Hall is indicative of work being done on the roof, the pointing (the cement between the bricks), and the windows. These improvements, he said, have to be made before sprucing up the classrooms to avoid rain damage. Russell Hall and Horace Mann Hall are next in line for these improvements.

An upcoming project is the ramp going into the Main Hall entrance. According to Schnur, work on the ramp will begin in January. As part of that project, the information desk will be relocated and the student lounge and Main Hall will be refurbished. During the time that this work is being done, the Main Hall entrance will be blocked. Russell Hall entrance, by the library, will be the primary entrance.

Funds have also been received to renovate Milbank Chapel. Classrooms will also be renovated to accommodate the use of computers, such as those on the second floor of Grace Dodge Hall. "We will have a plan which will involve campus input," Schnur said. "Architects will meet with groups in the upcoming weeks to allow us to prioritize." Schnur said work on these projects will accelerate over the next year to 15 months. However, he also explained that for accounting purposes, the College must have an unequivocal pledge of funds that is binding before a contract can be signed to begin work.

Dean Karen Zumwalt reported that the College is currently in the process of searching for 21 new faculty members. "It is going to take almost the primary focus of faculty to achieve this for the spring semester," she said. One goal is to increase the number of faculty of color. Part of the selection process involves candidates coming to campus to meet with students and faculty. These candidates will also make presentations to the community. "We will have 80 to 100 talks going on," Zumwalt said. "It is like a semester-long AERA."

The Dean also announced that Spencer grants will be approved for faculty at the end of the semester, and competition for student grants will open in January. Six students will be selected to work with faculty in an apprenticeship capacity.

When the floor was open to questions, President Levine addressed the issue of commuter population needs. He said that commuter students don't necessarily live close to the College, they are usually part-time, and because they are graduate students, they come to their classes and then go home. "We have tried to bring in big-name lecturers, and while they do well, they don't do remarkably well," Levine said. "We will try electronic kiosks and e-mail networks, but we would like advice and suggestions." However, he said the individual departments are the homes these students are choosing to relate to at TC. While efforts are being made to create a stronger sense of community, "the community I dream of," he said, "won't be wholly achieved by those measures.

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