College of Arts and Sciences

Listening to Learn


Listening. Nothing, in my experience, is more essential to maintain a flourishing community of learners.

Shared governance, too, depends on listening. That insight led a 2018 faculty task force to recommend a new approach to communication across the college.


This weekly bulletin was one result. Others included a reimagined meeting schedule to increase communication while reducing the overall frequency of meetings. Hence the periodic Constituency Team listening sessions--chances for members of our community with common interests to gather, to advocate, and to provide advice and suggestions to me and the CAS Council of Advisors (CASCA).

My job in these sessions is simple: to listen.

This week I, together with other members of the dean's leadership team and CASCA, were pleased to host a Constituency Team meeting of adjunct faculty members.

Thanks for offering your time, your experiences, your insights, your appreciation--and yes, your frustrations--with us. Later today I'll reflect with CASCA about what we learned from you about improvements we might make. 

Now I'm eagerly anticipating the next two Constituency Team meetings:

  • March 4, 3 - 4:30 pm with Undergraduate Faculty Advisors (location TBA)
  • March 25, 3 - 4:30 pm with Academic Program Directors & Coordinators (location TBA) 

And still I find myself wanting to listen more. 

So late this semester I will embark again on a series of listening sessions with each of the college's 15 academic departments, to be completed before the end of 2020. As I look forward next fall to my fifth year in this role, the time seems right. 

I look forward to listening more to you. I know that I will learn from you, as ever.