This week’s MCSG meeting began with a presentation by Provost and Dean of Faculty Karine Moe, who explained her role at the college and took questions from Legislative Body (LB) members.
Moe, formerly an economics professor, is in her 23rd year at Macalester. As provost, she oversees the library, the Institute for Global Citizenship (IGC), the registrar, academic programs and advising, and the Jan Serie Center for Scholarship and Teaching.
Academic Affairs Committee member Andy Han ’19 asked Moe about increasing the number of faculty positions – specifically those in the fast-growing natural sciences and mathematics departments.
“We have expanded the number of faculty positions by a considerable amount in the last ten years,” Moe said. “This year the hires we made were two in English, one in linguistics, one in biology, one in environmental studies, two in computer science, two in statistics, and then the Russian studies and the economics searches failed.
“Since I’ve been provost, I’ve allocated three positions to history, a brand new position to art history, three positions to English, a brand new senior department chair in the theatre department,” she continued. “The allocations have not been tilted only towards Olin-Rice, and I think there’s a lot of misinformation out there.”
MCSG president-elect Malik Mays ’19 then asked Moe about the college’s efforts to provide diversity and inclusion training for faculty.
“I want to make all of our classrooms accessible, where all learners can come and fully engage,” Moe said. “One of the things that we’re working on is a series of different types of programming to basically help them along. Donna Maeda of the IGC is working with small groups of faculty to launch different types of programming to tackle these issues.”
Another topic of discussion centered around potentially providing faculty training on handling traumatic events.
When asked by The Mac Weekly if the suicide on campus in February has expedited or deepened those efforts, Moe replied that “There is no question that this constant [barrage] of traumatic events is taking its toll on our community, including the faculty.”
“I’m not sure that the faculty needs any more prodding,” she continued. “I think that they’re deeply, deeply affected.”
After Moe departed the meeting, Financial Affairs Committee (FAC) chair Chris Pieper ’18 presented the budget proposals for several organizations, including The Mac Weekly, WMCN, Adelante! and more.
Next year’s MCSG budget will include $12,500 for the Menstrual Health Project, an initiative to provide free menstrual health products across campus that is expected to launch in the coming weeks.
“[The] $12,500 will come out of the overall operating fund, just like all org money does,” Student Services and Relations Chair (SSRC) and MCSG Vice President Ariana Hones ’19 wrote in an email to The Mac Weekly. If the project does not happen on a larger scale, then whatever money doesn’t get used from the $12,500 will go back to the operating fund.
“What we still need is support for the capital cost of new dispensers/updated dispensers. I am currently in conversation with [administrators] about that, but it will be a continued project for next year,” she continued.
In order to fund the program for April and May, the SSRC will need MCSG to approve an allocation of approximately $2,047. That allocation is currently under review by the FAC. A vote will likely take place at next week’s meeting.