Payne institutes Committee 2010 for future plans

Committee 2010 has been formed to evaluate the goals of the College over the next decade.

According to Professor of Economics and chair of the committee Catharine Hill, “The President constituted the committee to think about the future direction of the College.” Hill said the major question the committee will be addressing is, “Where do we want to be at the end of the next decade and how do we get there from where we are now?”

Jackson Professor of Religion and committee member William Darrow described the job of the group as “gathering suggestions about future directions the college should take and placing those suggestions in some sort of priority.”

David Smith, Dean of the Faculty, said the committee “is intended to begin a process of serious discussion about future concerns, needs, and priorities at the college.”

Hill predicts that the goals proposed for the next decade will not be drastically different from the current position of the College. She added, though, “We want to think freely and broadly, and challenge ourselves with new ideas and ambitions.”

The committee has recently begun meeting with other groups and committees on campus to discuss their ideas concerning the future of the institution. Some of the questions which have been raised from these discussions concern the future of curriculum, especially in regards to interdisciplinary requirements and a new first-year curriculum, along with questions concerning diversity at the college.

Hill added that the committee will also recommit to old ideas, such as those concerning the possibility that when, “challenged by changes in other colleges and universities, how can we position ourselves to maintain our deep commitment to need-blind admission and need-based aid?”

Along with the ideas contributed by campus groups, the committee will add their own ideas. Hill said, though, that the focus of the committee will be, “to encourage discussions and to organize and think through the major themes that emerge from the community’s discussions.”

According to Smith, the committee hopes to have “a broadly inclusive process of discussion on campus” in the spring. Hill said she hopes this will happen by April.

Smith said that after the ideas are compiled, “We hope to have a clearer sense of how the Williams community is thinking about the next decade of the College.”