Bowdoin's trustees will converge on the Babson College Conference Center in Wellesley, Massachusetts today for what President Barry Mills said will be a long weekend of "brainstorming" and "sharing views for the College."

According to Mills, this retreat, which will supplement the normal February meeting of the Board of Trustees, is an attempt to have Bowdoin's trustees meet in a more "intensive environment" with "less of the routine business that gets handled at trustee meetings." Mills said that similar retreats will occur with the February meeting of the Board of Trustees about once every two years. with Bowdoin's first trustee retreat was held in February 2008.

While the trustees will cover the same business that is handled at typical February trustee meetings, Mills said he hopes that these extended gatherings will give attendees a chance to get to know their fellow trustees better and to "reconfirm [Bowdoin's] ideals."

According to Mills, the extra time will be spent giving the trustees an opportunity to "discuss their views on what [Bowdoin] should be teaching," discuss "how we [can better] reflect our global position" and discuss the use of technology in both education and alumni networking.

"We are not going into this retreat with any preconceived notions" said Mills. He stressed that the meeting will be an opportunity for trustees and administration to brainstorm ideas on how to improve the College.

The student representatives to the Board of Trustees will also be in attendance. These representatives were unavailable for comment.

The trustees meeting will commence today following the normal procedure of the February meeting. First, tenure for eligible professors will be voted on, and while the names of those professors being voted on is not public, Mills believes that it is "highly likely" that all those presented to the trustees will be confirmed.

Also voted on today will be whether or not to give honorary degrees to several candidates. Mills says that the names of these candidates have not been announced because "[we] always like to keep the suspense up before [the trustee meeting.]"

"They are an exceptional group," said Mills, referring to the candidates for degrees.

The general business of the trustee meeting will finish with the presentation of the draft budget for the next fiscal year to the trustees and a speech by Mills to the trustees on the College's finances.

"I think the fund aspects of the budget are fairly well understood by the community," said Mills.

Asked if recession-related deflation had affected the college in any way, Mills answered that, while construction prices were down "we continue to see rises in health care costs, in utility costs, [and] in oil."

"While a lot has been written about deflation, it has not had many impacts on our operations," said Mills.

The College's comprehensive fee increase, or the increase in tuition and room and board fees, will not be announced at this meeting. Mills expects that there will be an announcement on that figure by late spring.

The comprehensive fee typically increases between five to six percent each year.

The final version of the budget will be voted on at the May trustee meeting.