The Board of Trustees will meet this weekend to discuss faculty tenure, financial aid, and the College's budget.
Starting today, the Trustees will break up into committees, which include financial planning, student affairs, and academic affairs.
Tomorrow, the Trustees will convene for a plenary session, to discuss a broad topic. While last May's meeting focused on Darfur, this weekend's topic is financial aid.
"It's an ongoing issue that takes staying in touch with to understand the dynamics of it," said Secretary of the College Dick Mersereau. "It's typical for a topic that trustees are going to focus on."
Joking that they were not going to be focusing on room draw or parking, he added that the issue, if not global, would at least be "something fundamentally important and fairly complicated."
A final vote regarding tenure nominations will also occur this weekend, after many months of work. The academic affairs committee, after having listened to tenure presentations with Dean of Academic Affairs Cristle Collins Judd, voted in January to grant tenure to seven candidates that were recommended to them. The nominations are confidential until after the Trustees' vote.
The Trustees' executive committee heard the recommendations of the academic affairs committee, and voted to advise the Trustees to endorse this recommendation. The vote this weekend will probably take place very quickly, according to Mersereau, but only on account of the months of work that have been put in already.
"By the time it gets to the full board, most of the questions have been answered," he said. "The idea is not to have a town meeting, but to figure it out ahead of time and come to some agreements, then move forward."
The same process applies for the financial planning committee, in terms of decisions about the budget.
Though students may not see many trustees while they are on campus, they still have a stake in some of the decisions that are made by the board. Most committees include one faculty member and two students.
"The process is a lot more transparent [here] than at a lot of other colleges," said Mersereau.
Though the first meeting of the academic year was conducted at The Bowdoin Campaign kickoff in Boston, the meetings usually take place on campus. According to Mersereau, this is done so that trustees will have a chance to see the campus, see what changes have been made since their last visit, and interact with as many students and faculty as time allows.
Though this weekend's meeting will follow the same structure as most previous trustee meetings, the focus of the dinners, discussions, and events will be on the school's most currently pressing issues.