This selection of messages sent by President Daniel R. Porterfield to members of the Franklin & Marshall College community reflects engagement with faculty, professional staff, students, parents and alumni on a wide range of issues of interest to members of the F&M family.
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on June 24, 2014
Dear Members of the Faculty and Professional Staff:
I am writing to let you know about some important work the Board of Trustees did at its retreat on June 9-11. You have already received word about the Board’s decision regarding the proposal to arm our sworn Public Safety officers. In addition to that action, the Board engaged in a number of conversations aimed at strengthening the College and setting the stage for a successful launch to the leadership phase of our comprehensive capital campaign on July 1.
The Board heard from Daniel Lugo that the Class of 2018, entering this fall, will be among the strongest we have enrolled in recent years. The College offered admission to 39% of an applicant pool of 5,470, and as of last week had secured deposits from 605 of those accepted applicants. This is the fourth year in a row when we offered admission to under 40% of applicants – a first in College history. The average combined SAT score for the class sits at 1313, and other quality indicators are also pointing in a highly favorable direction. More deposited students than in past years (just over 40%) hail from outside of the Middle Atlantic States, suggesting the College’s national profile and appeal are growing. In addition, 23% are students of color, and 14% are international. 18% will be first in their families to go to college and 56% are receiving institutional need-based financial aid.
During the retreat, the Board approved the College’s allocation of up to $1 million in funds from our $55 million of institutional cash reserves to cover an additional investment in financial aid needed for this class. The decision to do so came after discussions with Budget Priorities Committee members and extends the Board’s commitment to making available appropriate need-based aid to enroll high quality classes. It also reflects the reality that large numbers of talented students will need increasing amounts of financial assistance to attend colleges like F&M – the very reason financial aid is a centerpiece of our upcoming campaign.
The Class of 2018 will continue to take shape over the summer. As in past years, I will send you final information about the class at the beginning of the fall semester. I also look forward to an in-depth discussion with faculty about admission and financial aid early in the academic year, in response to Faculty Council’s request for a detailed look at this topic. A similar presentation will also be available for professional staff.
Trustees at the retreat spent significant time touring the libraries and the Innovation Zone, and learning about excellent work being done under the auspices of the Instructional Technology Task Force Alan Caniglia has convened. Hearing from faculty members Kim Armstrong and Calvin Stubbins, as well as Carrie Rampp and Alan Caniglia, the Board expressed its support for experimentation with technology-enabled pedagogies and making the best pedagogical tools available. This includes ensuring the College has adequately equipped classrooms to meet the pedagogical needs of the new curriculum. Over the summer, three classrooms are being fitted with technological enhancements and complementary furnishings for faculty to pilot in the fall and then to report back on their functionality. Some other classrooms are getting new or upgraded technology.
The Board considered issues in the quality of student life and ways a healthy campus living and working environment can help students learn effectively – and mature successfully. Trustees participated in a half-day workshop where they considered student leadership development and the roles of student organizations, including Greek organizations, in preparing students to be leaders on campus and after graduation. They received a progress report on the Office of Student and Post-Graduate Development and were also oriented to two issues that diminish student life and student development – sexual assault and gender discrimination on one hand, and substance abuse on the other. As keepers of this College’s values and educational traditions, faculty and professional staff play powerful roles in enabling F&M, in partnership with students, to cultivate our students’ unique talents and personal growth, and to identify and limit high-risk behavior and other blocks to student learning. Looking forward, we can build upon our many strong current efforts to foster the comprehensive development of our students – and to serve as a model for other institutions.
As I wrote on May 12, the Board has approved the July 1 launch of the leadership phase of Franklin & Marshall’s next comprehensive campaign – which will have the largest philanthropic goal in F&M history. This phase will last three to four years. During that time, we will secure early gifts and develop major concepts aligned with the campaign’s priorities. I look forward to working with you and providing regular updates.
At the retreat, the Board learned that fiscal year 2014, which ends on June 30, is going to close as a banner year in total dollars raised and the dollar value of commitments for future gifts. This augurs well for a successful campaign leadership phase. At the same time, the participation results show that we have more work to do to engage younger alumni in giving to their almamater. This fall, Vice President for Advancement Matthew Eynon will report on the final numbers at gatherings for faculty and professional staff to be announced early in the fall semester.
Thank you for all you do to secure the standing and mission of Franklin & Marshall College. We have done great work together this year, and I wish you a peaceful and productive summer.
All the best,
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on June 10, 2014
Dear Members of the Faculty and Professional Staff:
I’m pleased to announce that the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations have awarded F&M’s Faculty Center $250,000 to support curricular innovation. This latest grant brings the total external funding for the Faculty Center to $1.15 million, including the Mellon Foundation’s $100,000 New President’s Grant that I directed to support the first year of the Center’s operations.
It is exciting to see this national recognition of our faculty’s excellence and such a positive response to what the College has articulated as among its highest priorities—enhancing our extraordinary teaching and learning tradition and fueling knowledge, discovery, and artistic creation. The high level of support that the Faculty Center has already attracted augurs well for the success of F&M’s comprehensive campaign, which will formally begin its leadership phase on July 1.
In making this strategic investment, the leadership of the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations was impressed by the prominence of the concept in the articulation of our strategic priorities, the quality of the F&M faculty, the strength of our academic program, and the imminent implementation of the new Connections general education curriculum. They also noted the broad and enthusiastic faculty participation in designing the Faculty Center, the Center’s commitment to supporting faculty as scholars, educators, and College citizens through all stages of their careers, and the high-impact programing the Center sustained in its first year.
In the months ahead, the Center’s newly appointed director, Amy Mulnix, will work with Associate Director Mary Ann Levine, the Faculty Center’s Advisory Board, and the Office of the Provost to structure a process through which faculty may seek support for curriculum innovation efforts in the coming years.
Please join me in congratulating and thanking the Faculty Center’s Interim Director Mary Ann Levine and Associate Director Carol de Wet for all of their efforts to launch the Center over the past year and for their thoughtful work on this grant proposal. Last March, they hosted an engaging site visit by the Foundations’ Program Officer that showcased the Center’s many new programs and resources and the strength of faculty interest. I’m also grateful to Senior Director of College Grants Ryan Sauder for his and his staff’s support in securing this latest investment in the Faculty Center.
I very much look forward to seeing the creative uses to which our faculty colleagues will put these curriculum innovation funds, and the many ways in which their efforts will benefit our students.
All the best,
President Porterfield sent this message on June 9, 2014
Dear Members of the Franklin & Marshall Community,
As we enter the summer months, the College's Board of Trustees has convened during its June business meeting and considered today the proposal to arm the sworn officers of Franklin & Marshall's Department of Public Safety. I'm writing to share that the Board decided that, beginning with the Fall semester, the College will equip its sworn campus police officers with side arms.
Franklin & Marshall joins institutions across the country that have gone through a thorough process of research and self-examination and determined that arming sworn officers is appropriate for us, given the quality of our campus safety force and also the situations confronting educational institutions and law enforcement officers today.
The College's Public Safety department is a trained and accredited police force. Arming DPS's sworn officers will enable officers to provide a higher level of protection in areas they patrol, and allow for an even more effective response to threatening situations. Non-sworn officers in DPS will continue to provide security functions and will not be armed.
I want to thank each and every member of our community for their participation in a comprehensive and inclusive process that allowed the College and its trustees to hear the many perspectives on this complex issue. I also want to thank the Board of Trustees for engaging the diverse views of the campus and the surrounding community to reach a decision that they deemed to be best for Franklin & Marshall.
Many of you participated in the eight-month campus-wide discussion that began in September 2013 with a series of open meetings led by members of the College's senior leadership, and included additional campus forums and one-on-one meetings held by the Trustees' Task Force on the Question of Arming.
As I have shared previously, the decision whether or not to arm our officers rests with the College's board because of its ultimate responsibility for policies promoting the security of the campus community, the effective management of legal risk and liability, and compliance with relevant local, state and federal laws.
The board deliberated deeply and thoughtfully and considered all of the feedback and perspectives provided on this issue, in addition to the feedback collected online and through surveys; research on relevant practices at other institutions; and information gathered in consultation with external campus safety experts.
F&M joins several higher education institutions in the Lancaster and Central and Eastern Pennsylvania regions that equip sworn officers with firearms, including Millersville University, York College, Penn State-Harrisburg, Muhlenberg College, Lehigh University, Moravian College, Lafayette College, Juniata College and Dickinson College. But the trustees were focused on making a decision that is right for F&M.
We know from a safety and security assessment performed in Spring 2012 by a respected campus safety firm that our students, faculty and staff expect the same level of protection from F&M public safety officers as they believe they would receive from municipal officers. I called for the campus conversation on arming last fall in the context of the ongoing phenomenon of mass shootings across the nation and the recognition of the sustained development of DPS into a professional campus police force.
The College currently requires all of our officers and supervisors to meet state standards through training under Act 120, and in Pennsylvania, meeting state standards requires a minimum of 750 hours of training, including training with firearms. This training is the same required for all municipal police in the state. In addition, all officers and supervisors are trained under Act 235, which provides certification to privately employed agents to carry various types of weapons.
Over the next three months, Public Safety will pursue additional training, establish secure storage, make necessary equipment purchases, put its policies through legal review, and complete the many other steps required for sworn officers to carry side arms. By September, sworn members of DPS will undergo qualification procedures -- including psychological testing, diversity training, and more than 30 hours of training on use of the specific side arms that officers will be issued -- before qualified officers are issued their side arms.
We know that members of our community may have many questions about this decision and what it means for our campus. The College in September will hold information sessions for students, faculty and professional staff, and we have worked quickly to update the page of frequently asked questions that has been a resource for the campus throughout the arming conversation.
We also have maintained the online feedback form, which provides a mechanism for students, faculty, professional staff, parents, alumni and our community neighbors to pose additional questions.
I want to thank our public safety officers for their ongoing professionalism and dedication, and for being open and available to respond to any and all questions from the community over the past eight months and in the days ahead.
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on June 4, 2014
Dear Members of the Faculty and Professional Staff:
I’m pleased to report that F&M has secured a new $300,000 grant from the Lenfest Foundation to support the work of the Pennsylvania College Advising Corps (PCAC) that F&M has led since 2008. The program recruits recent graduates from F&M and other area colleges to serve as dedicated college counselors in roughly 15 rural high schools across Central Pennsylvania each year. The program includes Donegal and Manheim Central high schools in Lancaster County, and next year, for the first time, will serve our own McCaskey High School. In 2014-15, PCAC will employ at least nine F&M alumni as College Advisors across Pennsylvania.
Our College Advisors provide guidance to juniors and seniors in finding colleges that are a good fit for them and navigating the application process, while promoting a college-going culture in these schools. The high-school students served—many of whom are first-generation college-goers—would otherwise receive very little individualized support in seeking out a college education that will help them continue their intellectual and personal growth. It’s exciting that some of the students served over the past two years are now at leading institutions including F&M, Harvard, Yale, Stanford and Penn.
This new Lenfest Foundation grant will help support the program—which is also funded by the national College Advising Corps program, AmeriCorps, local businesses participating in the Pennsylvania Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program and contributions from participating high schools—for a further three years.
I’d like to express my deep appreciation to Program Director Bob Freund for all of his efforts to build a successful college advising program that has become a national model for effectiveness, impact and sustainable cost-sharing. Please join me in congratulating Bob and his program staff, along with Senior Director of College Grants Ryan Sauder, for securing this vital investment in the Pennsylvanian College Advising Corps—and in the future of high school students across our region.
All the best,
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on May 15, 2014
Dear Members of the Faculty and Professional Staff:
I write to share very good news. After a year of exemplary service as Interim Provost and Dean of the Faculty, Joe Karlesky will continue to be of counsel to our incoming Provost Joel Martin and me next year. Joe has agreed to serve for 2014-2015 in a part-time role as Dean of Special Projects.
Reporting to the Provost and Dean of the Faculty, Joe will help to orient Joel to the College and his new responsibilities. Joe will also be available to assist and advise Vice President for Planning and Vice Provost Alan Caniglia on developing assessment rubrics for the outcomes of a liberal arts education, on space planning, and on higher education policy issues. His work will extend to assisting Joel with faculty reviews and advising Joel and me on academic strategy development in the context of our soon to be launched capital campaign.
I want to offer my sincere thanks to Joe for his service this year. In his interim role, Joe has been a full strategic partner in the work of Franklin & Marshall. He has brought a strong faculty voice to the senior administration, has been a paragon of good judgment, and has displayed unfailing professionalism as he threw himself headlong into the work of the Provost and Dean. With Joel Martin and Alan Caniglia, I look forward to his continued advice and institutional service in the coming year.
Many members of our faculty came forward last year with offers to serve in the interim role, or with nominations of others to serve. This ethos of service is remarkable and commendable, and it is a strength of the faculty and institution as a whole. Joe’s selfless work exemplifies something very special in our institutional character—a trait we can all take pride in together.
Here’s to the beginning of a productive and good summer for all!
All the best,
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on May 13, 2014
Dear Members of the Faculty and Professional Staff:
I am writing to share the terrific news that Franklin & Marshall has recruited our first permanent Director of the Faculty Center—Dr. Amy Mulnix. Amy comes to us from Earlham College, where she serves as Professor of Biology and Associate Academic Dean. At Earlham, she earned a reputation as a strong teacher and administrator who is particularly involved in developing active learning techniques for the teaching of science.
During her visit, Amy presented a compelling vision for the Faculty Center that integrates emphases on teaching, scholarship and wide community involvement to make the Faculty Center a critically important resource for the enrichment of faculty lives and careers. She brings a wealth of experience and exciting ideas for Faculty Center programming, the use of technology in teaching, and effective assessment techniques to share with interested faculty colleagues.
Amy earned her Ph.D. in Entomology from Purdue University, and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from Cornell College in Iowa. In addition to her faculty and administrative roles described above, she has been a Teaching and Learning Consultant at Earlham College, and a visiting instructor in the Forensics Science program at St. Mary’s University in Halifax.
Amy, who will assume her new role on July 1, comes to Franklin & Marshall after a national search. It is exciting to anticipate the outstanding work she will do to build upon the superb work this year of interim director Mary Ann Levine and associate director Carol de Wet. I would like to thank Mary Ann and Carol for their dedication, vision and hard work. We look forward to the continued service Mary Ann will provide next year as Associate Director. I also want to thank Cindy Wingenroth, Operations Coordinator for the Faculty Center, and the members of the search committee for all they did to recruit Amy. The committee members are, in addition to Search Chair Mary Ann Levine, Associate Professor of Anthropology:
Jaime Blair, Assistant Professor of Biology
Lynn Brooks, Arthur and Katherine Shadek Professor of Humanities and Dance, Don of Brooks College House
Carol de Wet, Dr. E. Paul and Frances H. Reiff Professor of Geosciences
Giovanna Faleschini Lerner, Associate Professor of Italian
Katherine McClelland, Professor of Sociology
Ben McRee, Professor of History
I know we all are eager to help Amy get acclimated when she moves to Lancaster, and in the meantime share our welcome, gratitude, and congratulations with her.
All the best,
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on May 12, 2014
Dear Faculty and Professional Staff Colleagues,
I am excited to share that over the weekend the Franklin & Marshall College Board of Trustees unanimously passed a resolution for the College to begin a comprehensive fundraising campaign with a leadership phase (seeking major gifts) on July 1 of this year, to be followed by a public launch in 2018.
With a working goal of $200 million, the campaign will support the ongoing efforts that every member of this community undertakes every day to help F&M be recognized as a leader in creating powerful educational opportunities for students, fostering boundless discovery, and launching our students to lives of success.
The campaign will allow the College to further develop our areas of competitive strength: empowering an academic culture of research, teaching and learning; recruiting top student talent; ensuring co-curricular support for student learning and well-being; creating a signature student-athlete experience; and helping students and alumni navigate the path to opportunity through adulthood with our Office of Student and Post-Graduate Development and other initiatives. The campaign also will build resources supporting all of these efforts by increasing the college's unrestricted Franklin & Marshall Fund, which gives the College important flexibility to fund each and every priority.
I want to thank Vice President for College Advancement Matthew Eynon and his staff for all the hard work they have done to prepare for this critical early phase of the campaign, as well as the extensive efforts that will unite our community in forging the path ahead. Thank you also to all faculty and professional staff whose efforts contributed to our arrival at this significant point of opportunity for F&M.
Colleagues from across the College will play an important part in the success of the campaign. Through building relationships, demonstrating our excellence, and giving voice to our enduring academic mission, we will continue to build the success of Franklin & Marshall into lasting national impact and distinction.
President Porterfield sent this message on April 30, 2014
Dear Franklin & Marshall Community,
Many of you will have heard or read about the White House's announcement this week calling on colleges to intensify efforts to combat sexual discrimination and misconduct on campuses across the country, as required by federal law.
This announcement provides an opportunity to share the scope of Franklin & Marshall's policies and practices, which align closely with the new federal guidance, and in some respects, place us at the forefront of colleges implementing many of the programs that the federal government has charged schools to pursue. As I stated in my remarks at this year's Take Back the Night event to raise awareness about sexual violence, we all must work actively to prevent sexual misconduct and to develop new ways to promote safety, inclusiveness and an environment of mutual respect.
The White House task force on preventing sexual assault provides detailed guidance on sexual assault reporting policies, support for victims, adjudication procedures and prevention programs. F&M's student sexual misconduct policy is fully compliant with the federal Title IX provisions that govern issues of sex discrimination and misconduct on campuses.
We have a number of senior administrators with explicit responsibilities toward providing a safe and secure environment. F&M has a Title IX coordinator, a deputy coordinator who also serves full time as Director of Sexual Misconduct Services, and a panel of 24 trained administrators who advise complainants and respondents, investigate allegations, and hear sexual misconduct cases. In addition, the College already has a Committee on Sexual Misconduct composed of faculty, students and professional staff that regularly reviews campus services and procedures pertaining to student sexual misconduct.
The College has numerous programs and initiatives focused on education and prevention, many of which have been well established for 10 years or more. Among these is a 24-hour hotline for confidential reporting of sexual assault; an anonymous reporting line; a sexual assault orientation program for all first-year students; extensive Women's Center programming; and Take Back the Night, which involved 400 students on campus this year and 300 last year. There also is a student group of men committed to preventing sexual assault, and every year I invite our young men on campus to join these efforts.
As part of this week's White House announcement, the U.S. Department of Education is demonstrating the responsiveness of its Office of Civil Rights by publishing lists of schools from which it has received a complaint relating to a report of sexual discrimination or assault. OCR investigates all complaints, so a pending investigation does not represent any findings of any violation. While privacy rules prevent the College from sharing details, F&M will appear in the OCR's listing of colleges. The College is cooperating with all requests related to OCR's fact-finding investigation.
The College welcomes the White House's focus on sexual assault prevention, and the Committee on Sexual Misconduct will review and assess this coming fall semester how we might do even more to align with the new federal guidance. Furthermore, in an effort to provide an additional resource to ensure that we continue to meet the needs of our community, we have retained a former supervising attorney from the U.S. Department of Education to deliver ongoing support.
We must always be a community in which complaints can be brought forward safely, and in which they will be investigated and addressed expeditiously and in compliance with the law and our own expectations of ourselves. At the same time, we must redouble our efforts toward prevention education.
I want to thank our students, faculty and professional staff for their ongoing work to combat sexual misconduct and violence, and I encourage all members of our community to participate in these efforts.
President Porterfield sent this message on April 15, 2014
Dear Members of the F&M Community,
The last few days have brought great sadness and profound expressions of love as many among us have struggled with the news of Elana Stein’s passing.
I would like to thank all of you who have taken the time to reflect upon the needs of Elana’s family and loved ones, or the larger F&M community, during this time of grief.
It was uplifting to witness the presence of more than 100 students, faculty, and professional staff at Elana’s funeral yesterday at Congregation Beth El in Bethesda, Maryland, and to see firsthand the power of our extraordinary student attendance, in particular, to bring some solace to Elana’s family and home community.
The dynamics of grief are complex. No two among us experience loss in the same way. Even as we struggle to make sense of Elana’s untimely death, we also must reflect upon other losses in our lives, or tragedies like the Jewish community center shooting in Kansas City and the terrible bus accident that claimed ten victims last week in California and touched some members of the F&M community personally.
Elana’s close friends are in discussion with Campus Chaplain Susan Minasian about how we might commemorate her life here at F&M -- a gathering in which we hope to include Elana’s loved ones from home.
I encourage each of you to talk with the resources of the campus -- including our counseling staff, college house deans and dons, and chaplain -- if you would like to share feelings about this loss or seek assistance in any way.
In the aftermath of great loss, it is very common to feel the need to do something -- to help others, to heal, to make some kind of meaning.
And, in fact, there is something each of us can do right now, which is to remember that many among us are quietly hurting, and thus to treat each other with kindness and generosity. That simple mindful gesture can be a beautiful way to pay tribute to Elana Stein ’16, a dynamic young woman who enjoyed every blessing except the gift of time.
All the best,
President Porterfield sent this message on April 12, 2014
Dear Members of the F&M Community,
I am deeply saddened to share news of the untimely passing of one of our students, Elana Patrice Stein. A member of the Class of 2016, Elana had been hospitalized at home in Potomac, Maryland, since spring break after developing a severe infection. Doctors had placed her in a medically induced coma, and she died Friday evening of cardiac arrest.
A graduate of Winston Churchill High School in Potomac, Elana was a sociology major at F&M and member of New College House and Alpha Delta Pi sorority. She also performed with the College dance company. I know that she will be greatly missed by her friends, professors, sorority sisters, and classmates.
The College is in close contact with Elana’s parents, Don Stein and Linda Katz, and her close friends on campus, to express our deepest sympathies and extend our support.
Services for Elana will be held this Monday at 10 a.m. at Congregation Beth El, 8215 Old Georgetown Road, in Bethesda, Maryland. The College will be providing buses for those friends who wish to attend and are able. Students should contact their college house dean to secure a space.
A campus commemoration of Elana’s life also is being planned and details of those arrangements will be announced when there is more information. College Chaplain Rev. Susan Minasian will be available to meet with students interested in planning a memorial for Elana tomorrow (Sunday) from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in New College House.
Students who wish to access the counselor-on-call may do so throughout the weekend via the Department of Public Safety. Rev. Minasian also can be reached via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or cell 717-380-8284.
In the days to come, I ask that all in the F&M community support one another and keep Elana’s family and loved ones in our thoughts and prayers.
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on March 28, 2014
President Porterfield sent this message on January 20, 2014
This statement was released on December 27, 2013
Franklin & Marshall College rejects the call of the American Studies Association for a boycott of Israeli academic institutions. Boycotting colleges and universities based on national affiliation or alleged government transgressions arbitrarily and unfairly penalizes students and faculty. It limits academic freedom, scholarly inquiry and scientific research, cross-cultural discourse, political discussion, the growth of knowledge, and the free exchange of ideas in every field.
Franklin & Marshall will continue to work with Israeli institutions of higher learning, including Hebrew University and Tel Aviv University, where our students have recently studied abroad. Hebrew University and Tel Aviv University stand for academic excellence. Our faculty and students have enjoyed productive collaborations with these distinguished institutions of higher learning and we look forward to continuing these partnerships.
Franklin & Marshall College is not an institutional member of the American Studies Association. We support the rights of members of our community to form and express their own opinions and to participate in professional academic associations.
Daniel R. Porterfield, President
Joseph Karlesky, Provost and Dean of the Faculty
President Porterfield sent this message on December 17, 2013
Dear Members of the Faculty and Professional Staff/Students:
As the semester draws to a close, I am writing to provide a brief update on the process by which the Board of Trustees will evaluate the option of arming F&M’s sworn Public Safety Officers.
The Board will discuss the issue in its February meeting but will not make a final determination at that time. Our Trustees, who have legal and fiduciary responsibility for this decision, feel that the question will require more opportunities for analysis and reflection than any single Board meeting is likely to provide. They also feel, and I agree, that further campus discussion and information-sharing would be beneficial, whatever the ultimate decision.
I will write at the beginning of the semester with a more full report on next steps in the consideration of this important question. However, because we had a number of constructive conversations this fall, I thought you would want to know where the discussion with the Board stands before the campus empties out for the winter break.
Please enjoy the upcoming break, and have a Happy New Year.
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on December 4, 2013
I'm writing to share that the College, recognizing the need to employ an in-house counsel, has appointed an experienced attorney with a strong background in higher education law to serve F&M in this important role.
Pierce Buller, who has served for nine years as Associate General Counsel for the University of Pennsylvania, will join the College March 1, 2014, to provide legal and strategic advice on institutional issues for members of the campus community and the Board of Trustees.
In this day and age, there is extraordinary value to having an in-house legal resource with expertise in higher education law, a deep regard for the culture of a liberal arts college, and the ability to work with all stakeholders of the College on matters big and small. Pierce brings all of these qualities and is an ideal leader to serve as our founding general counsel.
For many years, F&M has received expert legal advice from external law firms, especially the Lancaster firm Barley Snyder. While we will continue this excellent relationship, an increasingly complex legal landscape for colleges requires ongoing coordination and counsel on a wide range of legal issues.
This includes the need for counsel related to issues of labor and employment, employee benefits, student conduct, governance, real estate acquisition, environmental and contract matters, charitable giving, intellectual property, litigation, and compliance with federal laws governing student privacy and Title IX's gender-equity provisions, among other matters.
Pierce will be responsible for ensuring that internal policies and procedures comply with federal and state laws and regulations, and will manage the College's ongoing relationships with external law firms.
This approach undoubtedly will enhance our ability to manage legal risk and will prevent some of the problems that can lead to large legal expenses.
At Penn, Pierce's role included leadership on legal issues related to employment, faculty and staff appointments, governance, admissions, community concerns and institutional policies.
His success at Penn grew from strong roots in higher education. He began his career serving as Assistant Dean of Admission at Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y., before attaining his law degree at Villanova University School of Law. Prior to arriving as Associate General Counsel at Penn in 2004, he was a partner at the Dilworth Paxson law firm in Philadelphia, where he worked for seven years, often representing institutions of higher education.
Pierce has a unique family connection to F&M; his twin sister graduated in F&M's Class of 1991, while he graduated with honors from Colgate. I hope you'll join me in welcoming Pierce to our community this spring.
All the best,
President Porterfield sent this message on September 13, 2013, about the campuswide discussion on the question of arming the Department of Public Safety
President Porterfield sent this message to students on August 28, 2013
I hope that the first day of classes has gone well and that you’re excited to make this semester count. I want to extend a special welcome to the newest members of our community and thank the sophomores, juniors, and seniors who have done so much already to make the Class of 2017 and newly arrived transfer students feel welcome.
Yesterday, we held our Convocation which included welcome speeches from Becca Green ’14 and Professor of Sociology Carol Auster, a recent winner of the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching.
It was a distinct honor for us to hear from one of your great forefathers as F&M students, Dr. Henry Wiggins, Jr. ’55 P’91. During this week -- the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington -- it was inspiring to hear from an alum who walked with Dr. King from Selma to Montgomery, and who went on to great eminence in his medical career in Chicago.
Here is a link to a piece Dr. Wiggins wrote in 1965 about the Selma march. I’m sending it to you today, the 50th anniversary of Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, because the eloquent witness that Dr. Wiggins bore to the Civil Rights movement could provide an inspiring perspective as you create your F&M education and seek to make your impact in the world.
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on August 28, 2013
I’m writing with great personal pleasure to recognize the sustained excellence of two long-serving colleagues, Alan Caniglia and Sam Houser, who have successfully met growing challenges of leadership at F&M over a number of years. I am very pleased to recognize their achievement with enhanced titles and the addition of new responsibilities to their current portfolios.
Alan Caniglia will now serve as Vice President for Planning and Vice Provost, and he will continue to provide invaluable leadership in the Provost’s office during the current transitional year and under our next Provost and Dean of the Faculty. The new title reflects Alan’s successful and growing focus on researching and developing metrics and narratives to support arguments for the great value that F&M provides its students and society. We will restructure some elements of his current work so that he can focus more time on planning and institutional research, which will serve the College well as we enter a campaign and in a time of considerable competitiveness in higher education.
Alan came to F&M in 1982 as a tenure-track hire in Economics, with expertise in the analysis of welfare programs and quantitative methods. His research has spanned issues in benefit-cost analysis, the effects of factors such as educational variation and union membership on earnings inequality, and the depiction and development of economic concepts in literary works. His current research is in the broad area of decision theory. He also is the author of a text, Statistics for Economics: An Intuitive Approach published by HarperCollins in 1992. Alan was appointed the Sigmund M. and Mary B. Hyman Professor of Economics in 1998.
In 1999, Alan joined the administration to reconstitute the Office of Institutional Research and has played important roles in strategic planning, curricular analysis and implementation, the transition to a need-based financial aid program, and enrollment/yield prediction. In 2001, he added the responsibilities of College Registrar to his work, serving in this role until 2006, when he became the Senior Associate Dean of the Faculty and Vice Provost for Planning and Institutional Research. Alan has played a significant role in the financial management of the academic program and facilities, as well as the College's work on the assessment of learning outcomes, alongside our Assessment Fellows. He has also led the group working on issues regarding our U.S. News ranking, served on BPC, and been a member of last year's Strategic Initiatives Steering Committee. I am very pleased that Alan will continue to build on this vital work as Vice President for Planning and Vice Provost.
Sam Houser’s new title will be Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and Chief of Staff. In this role, he will continue to coordinate among senior colleagues, helping to lead senior administrative searches, and ensuring that the perspectives of faculty, students, professional staff, Trustees, and other constituents are brought to bear in appropriate ways on College decisions. His new responsibilities will encompass policy and outreach related to the federal, state and local government and the Lancaster Community more broadly. This is a body of work that has been underdeveloped since the departure from F&M of Keith Orris ’81, and there is considerable opportunity for us to build stronger strategies in these areas.
Sam is a 1989 graduate of F&M, who earned a Ph.D. in Classical Philology from Brown University. He returned to F&M in 1996 to teach in the Classics department, where he remained until becoming Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations in 2004. In that role, he helped F&M win a series of institutional grants, including a Kresge Foundation challenge grant for the life sciences and philosophy campaign and a grant to create our college advising program for rural Pennsylvania high schools through the National College Advising Corps. In 2007, Sam became Executive Assistant to the President and the Secretary of the College. In that role, Sam supported President Fry in his communications, strategic projects, and fundraising work, and work with the Board of Trustees.
When I joined F&M, I asked Sam to serve as my Chief of Staff and continue his work as Secretary of the College. Since then, Sam has overseen the recruitment of a new senior leadership team, supported our strategic positioning initiative, led the work of the strategic planning steering committee, and supported the work of the Board of Trustees. He has also continued to teach Greek and Latin for the classics department, and just this year assumed responsibility for the Rouse Scholars program when Kent Trachte left F&M to become President of Lycoming College. In addition to his work at Franklin & Marshall, Sam has served on the Boards of local organizations, including the Fulton Theater. He currently is Chair of the Board of Directors of the Millport Conservancy and serves on the Board of Trustees of Wilson College, where he chairs the Enrollment and Student Life Committee and sits on the Executive Committee.
I hope that you will all join me in congratulating Alan and Sam on their new responsibilities and in thanking them for their dedicated service to the College over so many years.
All the best,
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on August 26, 2013
As we start the new academic year, I write to welcome you back from what I hope was a productive and energizing summer. I look forward to seeing you as the Class of 2017 and our transfer students formally enter our learning community tomorrow at the Convocation Ceremony held at 10:00 a.m. on the Manning Alumni Green, in front of Old Main. We are watching the weather forecast closely, and if it is determined that that the Ceremony should be moved indoors, you’ll receive an e-mail notification from Debbie Martin.
I extend my warmest thanks to all those faculty and professional staff who have worked so hard to welcome our new students to our campus community in recent days. This first-year class is among the strongest and most diverse in F&M’s history, with 609 members drawn from 32 states, the District of Columbia and 27 countries.
In the coming days, please join me in welcoming 25 visiting and 10 tenure-track faculty members to our learning community. Our new tenure-track colleagues bring expertise in areas from marine biodiversity to the international reverberations of government spending and tax policies to the status of girls worldwide—we are delighted to add these outstanding educators to our distinguished faculty.
We’ve also welcomed outstanding new professional staff in recent months, including Dean of the College Margaret Hazlett, who joined F&M in July. It has been a pleasure to see her convening her staff, meeting many members of our community and, over the past few days, welcoming our new students and their families to campus. You will receive an e-mail from Margaret soon outlining some of the interim structures for student services that she has put in place during her first weeks on the job. I look forward to hearing her share her vision for the future of student and campus life at a range of faculty and professional staff meetings in the coming months.
I hope that you plan to join Karen and me at our home for a reception honoring these and all new members of the faculty and professional staff on Tuesday, September 3 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.
I am grateful to the many faculty colleagues who taught courses or mentored our students in hands-on research projects this summer. Thirty-one faculty taught roughly 200 of our students this summer, including those in eight travel courses and field experiences in Ecuador, England, Italy, Japan, and South Africa. In addition, more than 100 students undertook research with 55 faculty with support from the Hackman program, our Howard Hughes Medical Institute grant and other funding sources. I had a chance to talk with many of the students on campus throughout the summer and know how much they value these opportunities to delve deeply into a field of study with the guidance of experienced scholars.
I am proud that 12 F&M students contributed roughly 3,900 hours of service to organizations in Lancaster, coordinated by the Ware Institute for Civic Engagement. I am also appreciative of the 12 faculty and professional staff colleagues who collaborated with the Dean of the College’s office, 15 current students, and recent graduates in providing a three-week college preparatory program for 71 talented, rising high-school seniors from underserved communities from all across the country. This year’s program participants included students from McCaskey High School, the rural Pennsylvania schools served by the National College Advising Corps, and partner programs in urban areas from Philadelphia to San Francisco and from New York to New Orleans. I am pleased that 12 students who participated in the 2012 F&M College Prep program are members of the Class of 2017.
Looking to the year ahead, the faculty is undertaking collective work in several key areas. This year, recognizing the importance of the Faculty Center to the vibrancy of intellectual life among the faculty, I designated the New President’s Grant F&M received from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to launch the Center this year under the leadership of Interim Director Mary Ann Levine and Associate Director Carol DeWet. In addition, the Governance Review Task Force will continue its evaluation of our shared governance, we are preparing to implement the new Connections general education curriculum, a group of colleagues is exploring how we might enhance the effectiveness of pre-major advising, and a summer working group on teaching and information technology will distribute its report to faculty during the fall semester.
President Porterfield sent this message on July 18, 2013
Dear Members of the Franklin & Marshall Community:
As of July 1, there have been two important changes to the administration that I would like to share with you.
Some of you have already met our new Dean of the College, Margaret Hazlett. Margaret comes to Franklin & Marshall after serving with distinction in the Student Affairs Office of Bowdoin College since 1997. Most recently, she was Senior Associate Dean of Student Affairs. In that role, she oversaw a variety of offices and functions, including pre-major advising, student orientation, multicultural student programs, the Judicial Board and the Sexual Misconduct Board processes. She also supervised Bowdoin’s Health Center, Counseling Services and Children’s Center, and coordinated the Student Emergency Response Team. Margaret has a strong commitment to liberal arts education and the forging of healthy and respectful communities. She will be an invaluable partner to all of us who teach and mentor our students and strive to help Franklin & Marshall thrive intellectually on their behalf. She shone among a pool of very strong candidates for our Dean of the College position, and we are truly fortunate to welcome her to F&M and her family to Lancaster. Margaret is a graduate of Princeton University, where she majored in Art History, and holds a Master’s degree from Harvard University. Before joining Bowdoin, she had held positions at Princeton-in-Asia and had been Assistant Master of Rockefeller College at Princeton. She has also taught history and directed summer programs at an independent school in northern Virginia.
My second note is a re-introduction of someone already known well at the College. On July 1, Joseph Karlesky, Kunkel Professor of Government, assumed the role of Interim Provost and Dean of the Faculty. Joe will hold this position until we have recruited a new Provost and Dean of the Faculty who we expect to join our community on or around July 1, 2014. Joe graciously agreed to be our interim chief academic officer and one of the College’s strategic leaders after discussing the role with the Interim Provost Advisory Committee and with me last year. His knowledge of Franklin & Marshall’s history, academic values and culture will benefit our community in countless ways. I am confident the institution will be stronger for his leadership and that the Provost and Dean of the College position will be even more attractive to potential candidates because of Joe’s service.
At the beginning of the academic year, we will hold a reception to welcome and thank Margaret and Joe for taking on their respective responsibilities. Please feel free to introduce yourself to Margaret and to thank Joe when you are in Old Main. Margaret occupies the Dean of the College’s Office, and Joe will be using the Provost’s Office this year.
Thank you for your contributions to the F&M community in the 2013-2014 academic year. I hope you are having a good summer.
All the best,
President Porterfield sent this message to faculty and professional staff on July 2, 2013
Dear Members of the Faculty and Professional Staff:
I am writing to let you know that former Trustee and former U.S. Representative, Rev. William H. Gray III, L.L.D. ‘63 died suddenly yesterday while in London to enjoy tennis at Wimbledon with his son. Bill was Chairman Emeritus of Gray Global Advisers, a business and government consulting firm. Prior to founding Gray Global Advisers, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of the United Negro College Fund. Bill was a pillar of the Philadelphia community, a dedicated public servant, a Baptist preacher, and an inspirational mentor and friend to generations of African-American leaders. In his devotion to his fellow men and women and to the good of the country, Bill exemplified the Franklin & Marshall ethos of excellence and human flourishing through service.
At Franklin & Marshall, Bill’s legacy includes the William H. Gray, Jr. Scholarship Program, which Bill established in 1990 in his father’s name to provide financial aid to students from southeastern Pennsylvania. The College also created the Gray Scholars program in Bill’s honor to provide need-based financial aid to Franklin & Marshall students from backgrounds typically underrepresented in higher education. In addition to financial aid, Gray Scholars receive special opportunities for leadership development and support for activities that cultivate their character while nourishing their intellectual gifts.
Franklin & Marshall was fortunate to benefit from Bill’s leadership while he served as Trustee in the years 2004-2012, after an earlier term of service that started in 1986. During his tenure on the Franklin & Marshall Board, Bill served on several committees, including Trusteeship, Communications and Quality of Campus Life. He also participated in the College’s Forums on Presidential Politics in 2008 and 2012 where he was joined by Trustees Ken Duberstein ’65, P’09, P’12, Ken Mehlman ‘88 and Stan Brand ‘70 in a series of vigorous and stimulating discussions that showcased Franklin & Marshall College’s contributions to public life through our alumni.
Bill, like many of our alumni active in public life, was a protégé of the legendary late Government Professor Sid Wise. Their relationship is the source of an anecdote that sheds light on the good humor of both men. On Sid’s advice, Bill took an internship with his local Congressman, whom Bill subsequently unseated in an election. Upon being elected, Bill sought Sid’s counsel about his new responsibilities—to which Sid replied that Bill should never hire interns. Fortunately, Bill found ways to support and mentor new generations of leaders growing up after him, particularly in the African-American community.
You can read about Bill’s distinguished career in public life and his long and steadfast service to Philadelphia and the world at:
When arrangements for a memorial service are made public, the President’s Office will share them.
I know you join me in expressing heartfelt sympathy to Bill’s wife, Andrea, and sons Andrew, Justin and William IV, as well as his many friends. He was a remarkable man, both humble and strong, and the world is a better place for his work in it. We are grateful for his life and will miss him deeply.