The St. Mary’s College of Maryland (SMCM) Board of Trustees met on Feb. 1 and 2 for the first time since October of 2018. Trustees approved of new policies regarding parental leave for employees as well as a revision of the Emergency Operating Protocol, and were briefed on several initiatives around campus, including the LEAD Curriculum, a sweeping revision of the CORE curriculum.
Vice President of Business and Finance Paul A. Pusecker updated the trustees on the status of commemorative statues planned for the Jamie L Roberts Stadium, which will commemorate the history of enslaved people in Southern Maryland. Three finalists, Steven Prince of New Orleans, Norman Lee and Shane Allbritton of Houston and Donna Lynn Dobberfuhl of San Antonio will present their concept sketches to the community on Feb. 12, 13, and 14. This plan follows the discovery of evidence of two distinct slave quarters found in archaeological examinations of the stadium site.
Pusecker also updated the trustees on the status of several other ongoing construction projects, such as the new academic building planned to be built on the athletic fields behind the Crescent Townhouses, which is Pusecker explained is “expected to have broken ground by this time next year.” In addition, Pusecker also noted that due to record amounts of rain, the Jamie L. Roberts Stadium project will be delayed by 45 days, setting a substantial completion date for June 4 of this year. Plans for a boardwalk along Route 5 for pedestrian access to the North Fields of campus were also discussed, with the project currently being reviewed by the Federal Highway Administration.
Provost Michael Wick and Dean of Students Leonard E. Brown presented updates to the LEAD curriculum to the Trustees, with Wick explaining that the Faculty Senate resoundingly voted to approve the curriculum citing that “90% of the Senate voted in favor of the curriculum, with the rest either abstaining or voting against”. Brown addressed the “Honors College Promise,” a component of the LEAD initiative that promises students with a professional internship or research opportunity during their academic career. Brown mentioned that many of these professional opportunities are already available through the Career Center, and that revisions to on-campus student internships would help to increase the amount of these opportunities. The LEAD initiative is set to be fully implemented by the Fall 2020 semester.
President Tuajuanda C. Jordan commended the Career Center for being “integral to the LEAD Curriculum,” and also expressed excitement about upcoming events from the Office of the President, including the annual Evening to Honor the Legacy of Lucille Clifton, featuring acclaimed writer Sonia Sanchez. “I’ve been saying that it truly is the year of the woman,” Jordan recalled, citing a number of female lecturers scheduled for this year. The Evening to Honor the Legacy of Lucille Clifton will take place on Friday, March 1 at 7p.m. in Daugherty-Palmer Commons.
The Board of Trustees is scheduled to meet on campus again on May 10 of this year.