2000 Self Study Report
Below you will find an abbreviated version of the 2000 Self Study and Final Report by the North Central Association Higher Learning Commission. You may also download the full version in PDF.
- Chapter One, Administration of the College
- Chapter Two, The Faculty
- Chapter Three, General Education and Outcomes Assessment
- Chapter Four, Focused Academic Programs
- Chapter Five, Student Life
- Chapter Six, Facilities and Information Services
- Chapter Seven, Diversity and Integrity
- Overall Conclusion
Kenyon's Self-Study Process Kenyon launched its current Self-Study in the late spring of 1998. The Steering Committee is composed of five faculty representing the various academic divisions of the College, three students, and four administrators from the Academic and Student Affairs Divisions. The names and titles of the Steering Committee members are listed at the end of this introduction.
The Steering Committee began its work by reviewing Kenyon's 1990 Self-Study, the 1991 report from the North Central Association evaluation team, and the College's 1995 plan for the assessment of student outcomes. The Committee then devoted much of its time in 1998-99 to reviewing and developing proposals for revision of Kenyon's general education outcome assessment program and to constructing and conducting several surveys of Kenyon constituencies. The Committee's analysis of and suggested revisions to Kenyon's general education outcome assessment plan are explained in Chapter Three.
The major constituencies surveyed by the Steering Committee included faculty (one survey of curricular goals and another of opinions on a range of issues), alumni (one in-house survey and one Higher Education Data Sharing Consortium comparative survey), parents, administrators, staff, and students (the Cooperative Institutional Research Program survey of first-year students, the College Student Survey of seniors, and a survey of students concerning Kenyon's honesty in dealing with students and prospective students). The findings of these surveys appear throughout this report, and an appendix is devoted to each of the surveys, including a full report of findings and a copy of the survey instrument.
The College adopted the Steering Committee's suggested revisions in Kenyon's general education outcome assessment plan in January 1999 and the Steering Committee subsequently assisted in the initial implementation of these revisions. In the spring and summer of 1999 the results of the various surveys were tabulated and analyzed and information in support of the Self-Study was gathered from various administrative offices.
In the fall of 1999 the Steering Committee appointed six subcommittees to draft reports for the chapters of this report. The standing committees of the Faculty and College administrators were also asked for reports on their areas of responsibility. These reports were evaluated by the Steering Committee, additional information was requested and assembled, and a draft of this report was prepared and distributed to various campus constituencies for comments and suggestions. Finally, the Steering Committee reviewed the comments and revised the report. . . . .
Membership of the Self-Study Steering Committee:
Jean Blacker, Associate Professor of French
Camilla Cai, Associate Professor of Music
Bruce L. Gensemer, Professor of Economics, Self-Study Coordinator
Bradley A. Hartlaub, Associate Professor of Mathematics
Llewellyn S. Jones, '01
Bridget M. McVie, '01
Gregory P. Spaid, Associate Provost, Professor of Art
Alys L. Spensley, '01
Cheryl L. Steele, Associate Dean of Students
Kristen C. Whittier, Executive Assistant to the President and Provost
Jon L. Williams, Samuel B. Cummings Jr. Professor of Psychology
Douglas W. Zipp, Dean of Residential Life
Conclusions and Recommendations
NCA Criterion One
The Steering Committee concludes that Kenyon meets criterion one of the North Central Association's criteria for accreditation: "The institution has clear and publically stated purposes consistent with its mission and appropriate to an institution of higher education." The mission and goals are clear and the six administrative divisions work well together to pursue them. The College's administrators are fully committed to maintaining and improving Kenyon's excellent educational program of liberal education in a residential environment. Subsequent chapters show that Kenyon faculty and students are also involved in important College decisions and share the commitment to provide an excellent liberal education.
NCA Criterion Two
Kenyon also meets the North Central Association's criterion two: "The institution has effectively organized the human, financial, and physical resources necessary to accomplish its purposes." The College is well governed, with an actively involved Board of Trustees and a Senior Staff which is a powerful and effective decision making body. The College has shown a consistent focus on the essential needs of the academic program and outstanding fiscal discipline.
Over the past decade four of the six administrative divisions have enjoyed stability and well-defined and well-understood organizational structures, policies, and procedures. These divisions are also supervised by experienced, effective leaders. The Academic Division has also been administered by effective leaders but has experienced much turnover and several reorganizations in recent years. These reorganizations seem to be addressing well the growing responsibilities in this area. Despite the high turnover in recent years, academic administrators have launched several important initiatives. The Library and Information Services Division was totally reorganized several years ago, as explained in Chapter Six.
The quality and organization of Kenyon's Faculty are addressed in Chapter Two. As a residential college, the Student Affairs Division is also critical to Kenyon's success, and its programs and services are evaluated in Chapter Five. In Chapter Six this report evaluates the extent to which Kenyon's physical plant and academic facilities promote the mission of the College.
NCA Criterion Four
The Steering Committee is also convinced that Kenyon meets the North Central Association's criterion four: "The institution can continue to accomplish its purposes and strengthen its educational effectiveness." Kenyon's resource base, while modest when compared with other colleges in Kenyon's comparison group, is fully capable of continuing to support the academic program and to provide the services needed by residential students. The success to date of Kenyon's current capital campaign indicates that Kenyon's financial support will continue to grow in the future, as it must. The success of Kenyon's annual giving programs also reflects the high esteem in which the College is held by its constituencies, and this bodes well for future financial support. That said, Kenyon's relatively modest endowment continues to concern administrators and Trustees, and endowment growth must remain one of the College's primary priorities.
Kenyon's ability to continue improving its academic programs will also benefit from the College's assessment of student, faculty, and administrator performance and its thoughtful use of this information when making resource allocation decisions. Assessment issues are addressed in Chapters Two, Three and Four.
The Steering Committee believes that Kenyon would be well served by developing a significant institutional research capability. This would require gathering to the center the currently scattered data on students' academic performance and extracurricular activities, the Faculty's professional activities, assessment reports, admissions records, statistical information on College compensation of personnel, and historical budget and expenditure reports. Institutional research almost always requires the ability to gather, combine and analyze information from various offices. Kenyon should also continue its recently reinstated membership in the highly effective HEDS Consortium. The College has much to learn from the practices and performance of peer institutions, so consortial participation is valuable.
Senior Staff is fully aware of the chronic problem of residence hall overcrowding over the past decade. The College became significantly more selective in its admissions decisions for the class of 2004, although this creates a risk of enrollment below the target for this class. This reflects a willingness to permit overall enrollment to gradually fall to the target level of 1,520 students, and thus to reduce or eliminate overcrowding. The Steering Committee encourages Senior Staff to continue this effort, since it will enhance the quality of student residential life. The large September lists that result from over-enrollment are convenient for funding one-time expenditures but do not contribute to planful resource allocation decisions.
According to the Administration and Staff Survey, about one-half of administrators and staff members believe that their salaries are not competitive with those elsewhere. The Director of Human Resources currently compares salaries only when a position opening must be advertised or when someone complains. Better understanding of salary issues is needed, so the Steering Committee believes that Kenyon should periodically make a more systematic and comprehensive study of comparative salaries and communicate the results to employees. It would also seem prudent for the Office of Human Resources to begin a systematic program of job classification reviews, perhaps relying on the assistance of an outside consultant. The recently completed review of academic department assistant positions revealed the value of job classification reviews.
Given Kenyon's long, proud history as an independent institution and its rather secluded location, the College must guard against becoming insular or parochial. One way to do this is to recruit administrators, faculty and students from far and wide, which the College does. Another way is to rely on periodic external review of programs. The Steering Committee believes that the College's decision to hold periodic external reviews of academic departments was a very significant step forward in this regard. As explained fully in Chapter Four, these external reviews have proven useful to most of the academic departments. Kenyon should now take the next logical step, which is to schedule an external review in each administrative division of the College once each decade. In those divisions with several distinct programs, at least one of the principal programs should be included in each external review.
Conclusions and Recommendations
NCA Criterion Two
The Steering Committee concludes that the quality and organization of the Kenyon Faculty fully meet the requirements of the North Central Association's accreditation criterion two, "The institution has effectively organized the human, financial, and physical resources necessary to accomplish its purposes." Kenyon's faculty possess excellent educational credentials and are dedicated to teaching undergraduates. The great satisfaction with the Kenyon faculty expressed by students, parents, and alumni/ae demonstrates the success of Kenyon's educational enterprise. Most faculty are also active and productive scholars. The Faculty has improved its governance system over the past decade to address concerns raised in 1990. The Executive Committee has become especially effective. Faculty dissension has also waned and morale has improved. The system for evaluation of faculty is elaborate and time consuming but also effective, especially with the creation of the Tenure and Promotion Committee. The new standard course evaluation form may also improve the evaluation process in the future.
The College should address the need for resources to improve its support of the Faculty. Over the past decade Kenyon's faculty salaries have increased significantly more slowly than those of Kenyon's comparison group of colleges. The Steering Committee believes that over the next decade faculty salaries at Kenyon should increase faster than the average rate of increase for the colleges in Kenyon's comparison group. This would permit the College to improve its competitiveness when hiring faculty. If Kenyon salaries continue to slip further below those in the comparison group, Kenyon will find it increasingly difficult to attract and retain outstanding teacher-scholars.
Kenyon needs adequate records of the professional activity of faculty in order to evaluate the scholarly activities of the Faculty as a whole and to measure progress over time. All faculty must be prevailed upon to cooperate. One reason for lack of cooperation by some faculty in the past is the (essentially correct) impression that little was ever done with their Professional Activity Reports. The Steering Committee recommends that the academic administration prepare annual reports on the scholarly activities of the Faculty and make this information available for inspection by faculty members.
Conclusions and Recommendations
NCA Criterion Three
This chapter and the next one address the North Central Association's criterion three for accreditation: "The institution is accomplishing its educational and other purposes." To satisfy this criterion a college must have a sound, coherent academic program and must also have an assessment program that effectively evaluates student achievement and uses the findings to inform the process of allocating resources.
The Steering Committee believes that Kenyon has established clear and laudable goals for the general education of its students and offers an academic program that pursues those goals with vigor and effectiveness. Kenyon's program features capable and motivated students, qualified and dedicated teachers, and strong administrative support. Kenyon alumni/ae are highly enthusiastic about Kenyon's contributions to their personal and professional lives, and their enthusiasm compares favorably with that of the alumni/ae of the peer colleges studied.
Turning to general education outcome assessment, Kenyon has been rather slow to implement its 1995 outcome assessment plan. The Steering Committee also found serious flaws in the portfolio component of this plan. It might have been easier to revive the portfolio program, but the Steering Committee preferred to significantly modify the outcome assessment plan and to help the College begin implementing the modified plan. This task has required a great deal of the Steering Committee's time, but the early results are promising. Kenyon is well on the way to implementing a general education outcome assessment program that fits Kenyon's tradition of teaching general education skills within the context of specific disciplines. The plan also capitalizes on the tradition among Kenyon faculty of routinely assessing and then modifying the courses and programs offered by the academic departments. In the past this has usually been done informally, and some Kenyon faculty have been slow to accept the need for a more formal assessment program which produces documentation. However, much progress has been made in twenty months. The Steering Committee believes that both administrators and faculty are beginning to understand the importance of the systematic assessment of student achievement. The value of the assessment program will become apparent when outcome assessment can be shown to have influenced resource allocation decisions.
NCA Criterion Four
The North Central Association's criterion four states "the institution can continue to accomplish its purposes and strengthen its educational effectiveness." The financial base, fiscal discipline, and planning needed to meet this criterion are addressed in Chapter One. Another important aspect of meeting criterion four is having effective decision-making processes. Kenyon's just-completed curricular review is an example of the way difficult academic decisions should be made. The faculty governance system organized the debate effectively and academic administrators played both leading and supportive roles. The review process was marked by much spirited but collegial dialogue among faculty who hold very different views of how best to pursue common goals. The Faculty and student body are more diverse than ever before, but the degree of consensus about general education goals has also grown over the past decade. Kenyon's ability to continue making difficult decisions and meeting its educational goals is stronger than ever before.
One of Kenyon's primary tasks over the next several years is to refine its recently modified general outcome assessment program and to establish it as a regular, routine aspect of college life for faculty, students, and administrators.
Kenyon should commit to using a standardized test of general education skills, such as the ETS Academic Profile, on a pre-test and post-test basis. This will permit Kenyon to track the progress its students make toward mastery of basic skills and knowledge. The Resource Allocation and Assessment Subcommittee should use its evaluation of the test results, together with the results of the departmentally-based general education outcome assessments, to inform its recommendations for budgetary initiatives.
Kenyon's academic advising system for first-year and second-year students could be improved. The Steering Committee believes that the recently created handbook for faculty advisors is promising. Further efforts to strengthen the orientation and training of underclass faculty advisors would be helpful.
Conclusions and Recommendations
NCA Criterion Three
As stated in the conclusions of Chapter Three, the Steering Committee has concluded that Kenyon meets criterion three of the North Central Association's criteria for accreditation: "The institution is accomplishing its educational purposes." Kenyon's majors and other academic programs are focused, coherent, and challenging. Faculty spend a great deal of time on program building beyond their preparation for specific courses. The Senior Exercise, honors program, and collaborative research opportunities all reflect the seriousness with which Kenyon faculty approach the task of providing meaningful opportunities for students to gain in-depth knowledge and advanced skills. Kenyon's majors, concentrations, and minors all focus on both disciplinary or interdisciplinary goals and selected general education objectives. This is reflected in the department mission statements and in the content and format of the Senior Exercises. Kenyon succeeds in fostering intellectual interaction between students and faculty in a variety of ways, in regular courses, seminars, the honors program, independent study, collaborative summer research and synoptic majors. Rigor is provided in each program by the existence of the Senior Exercise, the use of outside academic scholars to evaluate the work of honors candidates, the public presentations of the summer research scholars, and the periodic external evaluations of major programs.
Kenyon's long-standing use of the Senior Exercise and the cycle of external department reviews since 1993 serve as important assessments of student achievement and of the major programs. All departments have at one time or another modified their programs in response to an analysis of their students' performance on the Senior Exercise. Several departments have undertaken especially significant program adjustments as a result of their departmental self-studies and external reviews. Since the more formal reporting requirements for departmental assessment of student outcomes were introduced in 1995, nearly all departments have begun to report more thoroughly on their assessment activities. Also, departments have begun to use more comprehensive measures of student achievement than ever before, and several have adopted more objective instruments than those used in the past.
Kenyon has not fully adjusted to the new climate of more formal and objective assessment of student outcomes, but progress is being made. The Associate Provost who serves as outcome assessment coordinator and the new Resource Allocation and Assessment Subcommittee of the Executive Committee have begun the complex task of learning how to make effective use of the annual Departmental Outcome Assessment Reports.
Kenyon's outcome assessment program is well established for the disciplinary major programs, and much of it should be extended to the interdisciplinary major programs and concentrations. In particular, the interdisciplinary major programs should become subject to the assessment requirements which apply to departmental major programs. Otherwise, they will not be sufficiently accountable. The College should also extend the requirement of periodic external reviews to each of the interdisciplinary concentrations. However, it is not necessary to require the directors of the interdisciplinary concentrations to undertake annual outcome assessment.
The Steering Committee recommends that the academic administration devote significant attention on a continuing basis to assessment of student outcomes. Faculty are not enthusiastic about assessment, and many department chairs have limited understanding of what is expected. The success of outcomes assessment will thus depend upon strong administrative leadership.
Finally, the Steering Committee recommends that the international education program be subjected to periodic external reviews. Due to the large proportion of Kenyon students who participate in off-campus study, international education is one of Kenyon's largest academic programs. Furthermore, faculty interest in international education is dispersed across most disciplines, without any one academic department having responsibility for policy decisions. The standing committees of the Faculty have neither the time nor expertise to evaluate the full range of off-campus study options and policies. Periodic external reviews of the international education program would contribute significantly to its strength.
Conclusions and Recommendations
NCA Criterion Three
The Steering Committee believes that Kenyon fully satisfies the North Central Association's reaccreditation criterion three: "The institution is accomplishing its educational and other purposes." In particular, this criterion requires the college to provide "student services that effectively support the institution's purposes." Kenyon's dedicated Student Affairs professionals, assisted by student workers and volunteers and by faculty, provide a residential environment that promotes Kenyon's educational mission. The Student Affairs programs help students mature into responsible, caring, effective citizens. An excellent working relationship exists between Student Affairs staff members and faculty. The residential environment at Kenyon is one of Kenyon's very important strengths.
Recommendations Concerning Residential Life
The Steering Committee recommends that the College reduce the overcrowding in residence halls, either by providing more residential facilities, reducing the size of the student population, or both. Doing so will permit the College to restore lounges in several halls, provide more flexibility to deal with roommate conflicts and other special problems, and reduce the number of students required to live off campus. If additional housing is provided, it should include single rooms, given the strong preference for them by many students.
The Steering Committee also believes that the College should create an International House residential facility. If provided with adequate program funding, such a facility would enhance the multicultural experiences of students and focus increased attention on diverse cultures. The programs of the International House should be developed in cooperation with members of the Modern Languages and Literatures Department and the Office of International Education.
The Steering Committee recommends that Kenyon promptly require that first-year student residences be smoke-free. All upperclass residences should become smoke-free within a very short time thereafter. Kenyon should not continue to create smokers as it has in the past. Smoke-free residences will offer both a healthier and more enjoyable environment for the majority of students, who do not smoke.
The Steering Committee finds that the kitchen and serving area in Peirce Hall are seriously inadequate. In order to prepare and serve more adequately the present volume of meals, both the kitchen and serving area should be expanded and properly equipped. This expansion will probably require an addition to the south side of Peirce Hall.
Recommendations Concerning Physical and Mental Health
Given the very high student demand for a physician's services, and considering the view by both advisory boards that a female physician should be added to the staff, the Steering Committee recommends that a female physician be retained on a part-time basis.
The Steering Committee recommends that the Kenyon community study the balance between the resources devoted to varsity athletics and those devoted to the fitness and recreation of the 83% of students who are not on varsity teams. Given its isolation, the College should also seek to serve the fitness and recreation needs of the faculty, administration and staff. In recent years it appears that the fitness and recreation needs of the community have received too little attention. The Steering Committee believes that more personnel and facilities should be allocated to the fitness needs of the community. The current planning for expanded athletic and fitness facilities presents an excellent opportunity for a careful review of priorities.
Recommendations Concerning Social Life
The Steering Committee recommends that the College eliminate all parties at which alcohol is served from residence halls. Instead, the College should permit student groups to hold parties at which alcohol is served in Peirce Hall (in Philander's Pub, Upper Dempsey, or Lower Dempsey) and in Gund Commons (in the lounge or dining room). Fraternities would continue to be permitted to hold parties at which alcohol is served at their lodges. This policy would make all of the lounges in the historic residence halls available for non-alcoholic parties and gatherings, thus increasing substantially the opportunities for and attractiveness of non-alcoholic events. The Steering Committee believes that the policy would contribute to reducing the dominance of alcohol in student social life. Removing alcohol from the residence hall lounges would also reduce the considerable irritation felt by students who reside in nearby rooms. Finally, moving alcoholic events from the residence hall lounges to more neutral sites may reduce instances of unwanted sexual behavior and date rape.
The Steering Committee recommends that the Multicultural Affairs Office expand its programs so as to address the needs of all minorities, and that it clarify its mission to the larger community. As Student Affairs staff are hired in the future, attention should be given to seeking representation from several different minority cultures.
Given the number of student groups active on campus, space for meetings is extremely scarce. The Steering Committee recommends that the College provide a number of additional rooms for meetings of ten to twenty-five people. Also, an additional medium-sized performance space with a stage should be created, since this would permit an expansion of popular, alcohol-free student programs.
In recent years the College administration has considered relocating the College Relations offices from the center of the village to the north side. The Steering Committee recommends that this be done so that these centrally located facilities can be devoted to student activities and services. The Committee believes that it is more important that student-oriented facilities be located in the center of town than it is for the College Relations Division to remain there. Students could use these facilities for meeting rooms and a performance space, and the facilities could also house the Career Development Center and other student affairs staff offices.
The Steering Committee recommends that the performance of the Office of Security and Safety be reviewed by a team of people representing various constituencies. This Office should coordinate its services much more closely with the Student Affairs staff. The College should consider reassigning this Office from the Finance Division to the Student Affairs Division in order to better facilitate the needed coordination.
A General Recommendation
In a residential college of more than 1,500 students, medical, psychological, interpersonal, and academic emergencies inevitably arise rather frequently, as do violations of college regulations. By tradition at Kenyon, most of these cases have been handled by one of the five Deans, usually with assistance from other persons. This tradition ensures an appropriate College response to these crises and problems, and Kenyon's crisis response has been outstanding. However, giving due attention to these frequent crises appears to interfere with the ability of the Deans to devote significant blocks of time to program review, coordination of the interdependent services offered by various offices, consideration of how best to deploy resources, and creative long-range planning. The Steering Committee recommends that this issue of how best to use the Deans' time be considered by the Student Affairs staff. Perhaps it would be possible, for instance, to assign the lead responsibility for more of the medical and psychological emergencies to members of the Health and Counseling staff.
Conclusions and Recommendations
NCA Criterion Two
As stated in Chapter One, the Steering Committee has concluded that Kenyon meets the North Central Association's criterion two: "The institution has effectively organized the human, financial, and physical resources necessary to accomplish its purposes." The review of facilities in this chapter demonstrates that Kenyon has the facilities needed to support its academic program. Kenyon also maintains its campus buildings well. The current capital campaign was designed to meet the highest priority needs, and the new music and science buildings will certainly strengthen the curriculum. Kenyon's classrooms, laboratories, studios, libraries, computing network, and computer hardware are satisfactory. The new science and music facilities will support a significant increase in collaborative student-faculty research. The College is financially capable of maintaining its physical plant in the future, given the continuing expansion of the funded depreciation budget. Planning for new fitness, recreation, and athletic facilities is progressing.
Recommendations Concerning Facilities
Several of Kenyon's unmet facility needs relate directly to the quality of students' residential life on campus. Senior Staff's commitment to reducing or eliminating overcrowding in the residence halls is important and commendable.
Residential and community life would also be improved greatly by construction of new fitness and recreation facilities. The current level of frustration among users and potential users is very high, so meeting at least some of these needs would boost morale significantly. A new indoor fitness center could meet the needs for weight and training rooms, aerobic fitness rooms, exercise rooms, courts, a track, a recreational swimming pool, the associated locker and storage rooms, and offices.
Once the science complex is completed, the most important academic facility needs would appear to be periodic upgrading of the technology in classrooms, laboratories, and studios. Other priorities should include space for the new language laboratory, storage space for Dance and Drama, and improved and more centrally-located studios for art.
The Steering Committee is concerned about the services of the Maintenance Department. The College should consider outsourcing even more repair and renovation work than is done currently. The Steering Committee also recommends that supervision and communication be strengthened so as to improve both the quality of service and morale of the staff.
Recommendations Concerning the Library and Information Services Division
The Steering Committee has devoted considerable attention to Kenyon's Library and Information Services Division. Given the dissatisfaction with computing services on campus, the Steering Committee strongly recommends that within two years an outside team of consultants be engaged to evaluate the Division's client services. The team should also investigate the Division's organization, planning, use of staff, library collections, and facilities. By that time the new organization of division personnel ought to be well established, and it ought to be possible to evaluate the new policy of hiring most staff with library science rather than computing degrees. The Todd report in 1996 demonstrated that an expert with long experience in technology and administration at a leading liberal arts college can offer Kenyon useful insights and recommendations.
In the meantime, the Division should establish the goal of improving communication with clients as its first priority. Division administrators should be willing to explain to their constituencies their plans, schedules, problems, and mistakes. They should respond to user concerns promptly and openly. They should initiate outreach efforts to train users and to provide them with adequate documentation.
A second priority for the Division should be to improve its response to problems and complaints. The Helpline should be staffed all day and all evening during the week by professional staff. Reliance on voice mail and untrained student assistants is inadequate. Problem tracking software should be used to help prepare periodic reports to the community on the types and patterns of problems reported, the fraction of problems resolved within a week, etc.
Finally, the Steering Committee recommends that the Division frame its objectives and plans in more specific, measurable terms. This would enable clients to better understand what is being attempted. It would also permit administrators and faculty to better judge the extent to which the Division's objectives and plans have been realized. Accountability needs to be improved.
Conclusions and Recommendations
NCA Criterion Five
The Steering Committee concludes that Kenyon meets the North Central Association's Criterion Five: "The institution demonstrates integrity in its practices and relationships." One dimension of the College's integrity is the College's seriousness in pursuing its professed goal of offering Kenyon students rich opportunities to learn about diverse cultures. All of Kenyon's constituencies would prefer that the community become more ethnically diverse than it is, and Senior Staff has shown a willingness to devote significant resources to recruiting a more diverse student body. Faculty too have shown this concern in their searches to fill faculty positions. These commitments have succeeded in raising the minority populations of both students and faculty over the past decade, although not as rapidly as most members of the community would like.
The Steering Committee believes that Kenyon's communications to internal and external constituencies are honest and accurate. The College makes significant continuing efforts to ensure the integrity of publications and the accuracy of what those who represent Kenyon tell prospective students and donors. The Admissions and College Relations Divisions are open and honest. The Admissions Office maintains excellent relationships with high-school counselors, and College Relations actively involves parents and alumni/ae in the operation of the College.
The Steering Committee believes that Kenyon has consistently acted ethically and responsibly in its consortial relationships, including the Great Lakes Colleges Association, the Five Colleges of Ohio, the North Coast Athletic Conference, and the HEDS Consortium. Kenyon also follows policies which are designed to ensure nondiscriminatory treatment of students and employees and to respond to grievances. Issues concerning harassment and grievance procedures are addressed in Chapter One.
As Kenyon continues its efforts to diversify the student body, the College should institute a major new initiative to recruit foreign students. The International Education Office should assist Admissions in this effort.
One particularly attractive way to reduce overcrowding in Kenyon's residence halls would be to create an International House on campus, as mentioned in Chapters Five and Six. Even if new residences are not built, serious consideration should be given to devoting an existing facility to an International House. This residence hall could help provide support to foreign students and to American students desiring a multicultural living experience. Finally, programs sponsored by an International House could help focus community attention on international and multicultural issues.
The Steering Committee is unaware of a lack of integrity in Kenyon's varsity athletic programs. However, the College is not well served by permitting coaches essentially complete autonomy in their communications with prospective athletes. The Steering Committee recommends that rigorous oversight be initiated to ensure that integrity is maintained in this important area. No publications should be permitted to be mailed to prospective student athletes until they have been thoroughly reviewed by the Public Affairs Office.
The Steering Committee believes that an important guarantee of Kenyon's integrity is provided by regular surveys of the College's various constituencies. While these surveys also serve other important purposes, they provide a means to ascertain the effectiveness and accuracy of Kenyon's publications and other communications. Specifically, the College should continue to administer the Parent Survey and the HEDS Consortium Alumni/ae Survey on a regular cycle of four or five years. In addition, the College should continue to administer an annual opinion survey to seniors, and the survey should include questions dealing with the College's integrity.