April 23,1998

Pension suit claimants contested

Final Loyola Revitalization report submitted to the Board

by Laurie Zack

After seven months of intense discussion, the final report of the Rector's Advisory Task Force on the Revitalization of the Loyola Campus was submitted to the April 15 Board of Governors meeting.

The report outlines five scenarios, of which Option 1 garnered the support of 12 of the 17 committee members.

Option 1, the "science option," proposes that the sciences, the performing arts (Music, Theatre and Contemporary Dance), Psychology, the humanities service component, the social sciences and Communication Studies and Journalism (depending on space) be located on the Loyola Campus.

Here are what the other options would base at Loyola: Option 2 calls for the humanities, the performing arts, and Psychology; Option 3 proposes social sciences, performing arts and Psychology; Option 4, humanities and social sciences; Option 5, the so-called "fine arts option," calls for all the departments of the Faculty of Fine Arts, plus the Departments of Psychology, Exercise Science, Communication Studies and Journalism.

In addition to the final report and appendices, the package presented to the Board also contained two letters from committee members Sr. Eileen McIlwaine and Don McNaughton and minority reports from Don Taddeo and Enn Raudsepp.

Sister McIlwaine told the Board that although she generally agreed with the document, she felt that Options 2, 3 and 4 were not treated as seriously as the other options. Although she did not necessarily disagree with the science option, she felt that the benchmarks that were used to analyze the alternatives were not rigorously applied to all the options.

McIlwaine did not feel comfortable about indicating a preferred option without further information on long-term space and academic planning. The letter from McNaughton supports Option 5, the fine arts option, over Option 1.

Don Taddeo's minority report makes the case for Option 5 based on the future development of Concordia, cooperation and coordination with other universities (especially McGill) and the potential for consolidation, synergy and funding opportunities.

Enn Raudsepp's minority report echoes some of the same points and urges reconsideration of Option 5.

In his preliminary response to the report, Rector Frederick Lowy concurred with its general thrust and identified Options 1 and 5 as particularly worthy of consideration. He also recognized the need for more data and the financial and academic implications of the options before making a decision.

He said he would come back to the Board in May with a more developed response, and asked for input from the Concordia community. The Board paid tribute to the hard work of committee chair Lillian Vineberg and the dedication of the committee members. For copies of the report, call Ann M. Bennett at 848-4851, or Enza De Cubellis at 848-4840. An executive summary is posted on the Web site at www.concordia.ca/announcements/finrpt.html

Pension fund suit

Reporting on developments in the pension fund suit, Vice-Rector Marcel Danis said that a March 30 negotiating session between the administration and union representatives did not result in a schedule for future negotiations.

A motion challenging the right of the CSN unions to represent the pension members in the suit was presented to a judge on April 7 on behalf of CUFA and the retired members of the pension fund. A decision will be rendered in several weeks.

Search committees will be set up for Provost and Vice-Rector Research and for Dean of Fine Arts. Both terms end May 31, 1999.

Outgoing Commerce and Administration Students Association president Dino Nizzola appealed to the University to maintain faculty-student ratios, salary levels and space requirements to meet AACSB criteria and maintain accreditation. He also underlined the need for a strong promotions strategy and the technology to compete with other business schools.

Reporting on the progress of the Capital Campaign, Richard Renaud emphasized the commitment of major donors like Mel Hoppenheim, who not only give of themselves, but go out to recruit others to help finance the projects that they have begun.

Rector Lowy mentioned Governors Jonathan Wener and Leonard Ellen, who were instrumental in raising $2 million in major donations last week.

Terry Fancott praised the Capital Campaign team for coordinating visits by donors to his Faculty. He mentioned the enormous costs to industry to recruit high-tech employees and the role of the Faculty in coordinating and promoting its graduates with industry.

The Board welcomed new CSU president David Smaller and new Executive Director of Human Resources Valérie Gagnon.

Copyright 1998 Thursday Report. For technical comments please e-mail   Webmaster