EPAG looks ahead to new year

By Lindsey Smith

Members of Macalester’s Educational Policy and Governance committee (EPAG) plan to seek out perceived problems in the academic workings of Macalester this year. The committee’s biggest project last year was its recommendation for the discontinuation of the Russian Studies department, issued in February. After months of deliberation the program was saved by a slim two-thirds faculty vote. Due to policy specifications, the committee can take no action on Russian Studies for at least five years, so they are exploring resolutions to other potential academic issues this year. “The purpose of EPAG is to discuss academic policy issues connected to faculty and curriculum matters and initiate changes as needed or required,” EPAG chair Sonita Sarker wrote in an email. Sarker went against the grain last spring when she was the lone EPAG vote against the discontinuation of the Russian Studies program. The six other faculty members and both student representatives voted in favor of the report. This year, Sarker said that EPAG will be focusing on Macalester’s Writing, Quantitative Thinking, Multiculturalism and Internationalism requirements although she declined to comment on the specifics of these tasks. There will be community-wide discussions on the potential modification of the academic requirements as the committee examines their effectiveness. Although EPAG is a faculty-controlled operation, the committee attempts to consider student opinion with two student representatives, Zachary Avre ’14 and Ezequiel Jimenez Martinez ’13, who sit in on EPAG meetings and report back to MCSG about the general issues that EPAG discusses. refresh –>