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March 9, 1998

Town hall meeting looks toward campus future

Approximately 70 people turned out for the March 5 meeting.

By Francine Tyler

What principles should UCSC follow as the campus moves into the next century? That's the question the Millennium Committee has been asking members of the campus and Santa Cruz communities this academic year.

Charged by Chancellor Greenwood with the responsibility for articulating "key principles that will serve as touchstones for all campus planning into the 21st century," the committee shared some of the answers it has received at a town hall meeting on Thursday, March 5. It also gathered feedback on its work from the audience of 70 at Kresge Town Hall.

"We've been trying to listen to as many segments of the campus community as possible," said Gail Hershatter, a professor of history and cochair of the committee. Hershatter estimates committee members have talked to 500 members of the campus community about their visions for the campus and heard not unanimous agreement, but a "surprising degree" of compatible opinions.

At Thursday's meeting, Hershatter and her cochair, professor of environmental studies Marc Mangel, presented a draft executive summary of the committee's findings. The executive summary, tentatively titled "UCSC at 40-Something," "looks forward 10 to 15 years and asks what kind of a university we want to be," Hershatter said.

In the report, key ideas are grouped under three main headings: "Who we are," "How we work," and "What we do." The section titled "What we do" encompasses ideas for how the campus should produce, transmit, and apply knowledge.

In the committee's vision of UCSC's future, the campus will serve the entire region, including communities in both the San Francisco and Monterey Bay Areas. Enrollment will continue to grow, with graduate student enrollment possibly making up as much as one-third of the expected increase. The campus will continue to focus on providing high-quality undergraduate instruction while carrying out outstanding research.

"Our business is, in a sense, the business of knowledge and how it can be created and transferred," said Mangel. "We believe that research and undergraduate education are not only compatible, but that they reinforce each other."

The following is a sampling of additional principles the committee has identified as being important for the campus into the next century:

The Millennium Committee expects to present a draft report to the campus community by early May and revise it with input from the campus before finalizing it at the end of June. At that time, other committees on campus will take over the task of carrying out the recommendations contained in the report.

For more information about the committee or the draft report, go to the Millennium Committee Web page.

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