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Faculty committee begins work on vision of Stanford

STANFORD -- The first new task of the Faculty Senate Committee on Education and Scholarship at Stanford is to "develop a vision statement of what we think Stanford should be in terms of education and scholarship," said Prof. Richard N. Zare, who chairs the committee.

"With that vision statement in mind, we hope to participate in an effective manner in the budget-making process," he said.

Zare, chair of the chemistry department, was selected to head the committee by the Committee on Committees of the Faculty Senate. Patricia Jones, professor of biological sciences, is deputy chair.

The other committee members are: Profs. Lucius J. Barker, political sciences; George G. Dekker, english; John K. Eaton, mechanical engineering; George M. Fredrickson, history; William H. Northway Jr., diagnostic radiology & Nuclear Medicine and Pediatrics; James C. Van Horne, business; and Robert Weisberg, law.

The committee receives staff support from Assistant Dean Ellen R. Woods, of the School of Humanities and Science, and Prof. Marion Lewenstein, the academic secretary of the university, Zare said.

The committee has met twice since June 25 and expects to meet at least weekly throughout the summer in hopes of having a vision-of-Stanford statement to present to the Faculty Senate at its first meeting this fall, Zare said.

"That will only be a draft, but it's important to us because we think it's only through having a vision of Stanford that we can help preserve programs more at the core of Stanford," Zare said. "Without a vision, we are very worried that we wind up fiscally sound but academically weak."

Committee members hope to join the "liaison teams" that the Cabinet Committee on Budget and Strategic Planning is putting together to look at the units of the university.

"For this place to work well, we have to have communication, and the faculty has to participate," Zare said.

"There are many other committees meeting now that are quite budget driven, with very sharp deadlines. We don't wish to be ignorant of budget, but we don.'t want to be driven by budget considerations. In some sense we have a longer-term task. It also means we're less immediately relevant."

Zare stressed that the new committee welcomes both faculty and staff input. Suggestions or concerns should be mailed to the committee in care of Ellen Woods, Building 1, mail code 2070, or electronically to Woods@acropolis.

"Oral communication is wonderful, but it can be hard to remember what was said. It's best to make suggestions in writing so they can be distributed, shared and studied," Zare said. --kpo--


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