Letter from Joni Rabinowitz ’64

To the Editor,

My feelings about the current state of affairs are very mixed. I applaud all the people – on both boards and those on no board – for their tireless labors of love  and generous contributions, to bring us to this point.

On the other hand, I’m very suspicious. The same people seem to still be in charge. The same ones who have ripped us off for years. I see people who don’t  identify with our traditions, and who want  to destroy the college, still holding the bulk of the power.

Financial exigency was a foreign term to me until recently. So when I did a quick review of the definition of the phrase I learned that, in sum,  financial exigency means you have the right to fire tenured faculty.  This is not a very collegial way to begin a new relationship. No suprise, then, that faculty are mistrustful.

In fairness, I haven’t had to time read all the material that’s come out over the past four to five months. Nor have I studied, thoroughly, the latest set of documents. However, I wonder to what extent faculty has been involved—or will be involved — in this process. Same question about the current students.

The college clearly needs a reorganization and re-direction. I hope people with some knowledge in this arena have been engaged. Keeping a person on the top who has been the source of so many people’s anger is clearly problematic at this point.

Now we need to hire a president with clear powers and  allow a fair role for all the stakeholders in crafting a budget and determining priorities.

I look forward to the next steps.

Joni Rabinowitz, class of 64
A community organizer in Pittsburgh, PA