April 27th 2009 Interview with Matthew Derr

My first question is… how are you doing ?

I’m doing well. This has been a very busy period in a very busy year. And I’ve been spending most of my time doing fundraising, travelling, getting ourselves in order in that way.

The task force met on Sunday in NY, with Toni and Art; how would you describe the atmosphere of the meeting?

Very positive, very focused on the specific steps that we have to take to make this separation happen and to prepare… both boards for making a really monumentous and important decision.

The press release talks about June 30th as the latest possible date for the resolution, do you anticipate and earlier resolution?

I think the hope is that it would be earlier. The date of the 30th relates to the hopeful transfer of the college, so that’s the conclusion that we’ve all hoped for and worked for hoped for in these past two years-that the college would ultimately be independent and that’s the date that’s critical to that. So if the definitive agreements come about sooner that’s what we’d like to see happen. Going beyond that date becomes problematic for everyone.

When will the ACCC get its 501(c)3?

Well, we’re all filed and it’s really in the hands of the Internal Revenue Service but we sought as much help as we can in moving that process along so I don’t know the answer to that but we hope very quickly.

Any vague estimate?

Not really, no.

Why was there such an imperative to create a non-successor corporation?

I don’t know what there is and it’s an area where there’s been a lot of conjecture and a lot of talk and the Board Pro Tem is in the process of understanding the whole scope of decisions around whatever kind of entity the college becomes as a separate 501(c)3, so I don’t think there’s an answer to that question yet.

In a previous interview Lee Morgan said “we’ve been trying very hard not to be a successor corporation…”

I think there are elements of that that have to do with the physical plant, that have to do with all sorts of things. I think that he has a view of it that he’s developed and we’re trying to get more information and get the whole board up to speed and get Lee up to speed on all of that but we haven’t got through that process yet. And it’s a tricky area because it doesn’t involve just one concern, it involves the way in which the separation happens with the university and what happens with endowments and records and obviously future/past staffing and facilities and what’s in the facilities…it’s not an easy question to answer I think it’s interwoven with all of the other decisions, so I’ll let Lee speak for himself but that’s my perception.

In the worst case scenario-I mean second to worst case scenario-the agreement would be reached on June 30th; that would be the end of the faculty and staff contracts for Nonstop. Is the board planning to take steps to communicate prospects to faculty and staff?

First, the two things are unrelated, June 30th has to do with the end of the fiscal year, and frankly it has to do with really needing to have a deadline here for the transfer and I think people should really read the press release carefully because the earliest possible time phrase has everything to do with working to complete the definitive agreements so that the two boards can really make decisions about the separation in time for the transfer at the end of the month. […] It’s not my sense that any statement is about to be made. I think the board has been informed by Nancy Crow who’s also a board member that the task force is doing its work and that a report will be produced, but beyond that I think the relationship between the two things is not fully developed at this point.

Is the board aware of the ACAN petition in support of Nonstop?

It is.

Do you think the petition demands are reasonable?

It’s a long list of demands; I think there are elements of it that I think everybody can understand are maybe hard for the Board Pro Tem to read. I think they’re trying to behave as responsibly as they can and as thoughtfully as they can and I think these are extraordinarily difficult circumstances.

Will the Board Pro Tem respond to the petition in any manner?

As I understand it, it was written to an alumni audience and Nancy Crow shared it with the Board ProTem as a whole. I guess I understand the nature of the petition is that at some point it will be shared directly with the Board Pro Tem, so there is no immediate plan to respond -or to whom a response should be written.

When and where will the BPT meet next?

There are a number of options on that, I’m just going to say that right now we have a plan to meet and really hear from some of the expert counsel and legal team around the definitive agreements, but at this point that’s all that’s established.

In the accreditation report it was stated that the ACCC looked into accreditation really early in its deliberations, why is the report coming out so late?

It wasn’t intended to come out, it was a request that the Transition Advisory Group made with me here in Yellow Springs a couple of weeks ago. We thought that it might be helpful for people to understand what we’ve learned thus far. It’s not a fixed document, it’s not a finished document; it just represents what the board has learned until this point. Further work is going to be done and obviously the circumstances around the separation of the college and the timing have a lot to do with what accreditation will look like. We’re obviously interested in getting the place in the kind of condition that it should to be a college and to be able to make the decisions that lead to accreditation as quickly as possible so we’re looking for the fastest route that we can sustain.

So the board is ready to consider other alternatives than the timeline that’s outlined in the report?

The timeline that’s outlined is essentially what we’ve learned to date and we’re continuing to do more research on accreditation.

Who authored the report?

Frances Horowitz is the board member who’s had the most to do with accreditation and it’s pulled from a lot of different communications. I think there’s a number of pens involved but I think that Frances is the person that’s the most knowledgeable on the board.

The report was the first place where the phrase “small cadre of faculty” was used, even though there were implications before that only a core of a few faculty would remain it’s the first time we’re seeing it in writing, even though it had been said that these discussions hadn’t happened yet. So they have happened to a certain extent?

I don’t think there’s a contradiction there because small is a vague concept; I think we’ve talked very openly about student-faculty ratio and an entering class that is small at the beginning, in part because we want to make sure that the resources are there for the faculty and students and the funding to support it is there so the small cadre comment is being taken out of context a little bit if it’s not seen in the same vain as the other comments that have been made. It will be a small college to begin with, I think everybody knows that , so it’s not a surprise to read a reference to a small faculty.

Did you get the reversion clause revised in the definitive agreement?

It’s not a difficult question to answer in the sense of confidentiality but what I’d say is that the board–the university board of governors and the task force and the board pro tem seem to all be on the same page as far as the questions that involve reversion: that the university be protected and be able to exercise its fiduciary responsibility and that the college be free and independent. One critical issue that’s been talked about is the capacity of the college to go out and finance building projects or really anything that the future president and board would like to finance, if there are reversion clauses that cause that to not be possible that’s not acceptable and the university understands that and said that they support that concept.

What will be the main challenges of the next couple of months according to you?

If I knew it, I’d know exactly what to do! I think this is a very stressful moment, particularly for the Nonstop Community. There’s so much that’s unknown, and yet there’s that timeline and deadline that seem to be looming; people are gonna be making very difficult decisions, and Pro Tem Board is going to be in the position of trying to figure out whether the financial support and the demands for the revival of the college meet up. And I’m optimistic and positive that they will but it’s going to be overly demanding next months.

Are you optimistic?

I am. Very. I believe that the college is too important and too critical in Higher Education to fail. And I marry that to the opportunity to really create something that is exciting and returns the college to its place as a bully-pulpit in Higher Education. So, I’m optimistic in part because I think philosophically there’s a need for Antioch and practically and pragmatically I’m optimistic because I see the level of support that’s out there, I see people extending themselves in ways to save the college and to reinvent the college that are moving. I’m also optimistic about the process with the University, which is the embedded question there. Nothing has happened in the task force work that leads me to feel that we’re not gonna come up with an agreement.

Where are you going next?

I’m here in Yellow Springs for two days, and then off to fundraising.

Where?

All over the place.

Thank you for your time.

Open Letter to the Board Pro Tem, by Lincoln Alpern ’11

Open Letter to The Board Pro Tem
(CC’d to the entire Save Antioch! community)

As I write this letter, there has been no new word on the Definitive Agreements between the Board Pro Tempore of Antioch College and the Board of Trustees of Antioch University. This, to me, is not an issue, as my point revolves more around the end of the ninety-day period which began in January. If the deal falls through, then the rest of this letter becomes moot. If not, however, then my arguments stand, regardless of where we are in the process.

I will begin by inviting my readers to take a trip with me back through time. It’s late in the year 2007. The Alumni Board of Antioch College and the Board of Trustees of Antioch University have come to an agreement in principle that Antioch College will stay open, but donors are balking and many members of the Antioch community (on- and off-campus) have grave misgivings about the way in which the Trustees are moving forward.

Among the biggest of those misgivings: the Trustees’ continued threats to reduce faculty and staff, despite the unpopularity of the idea among Antiochians. (Also, their refusal to recruit first-year students for Fall ’08.)

Now let’s go further back. It’s Reunion, 2007. Mere days ago, the Antioch community heard the announcement of the college’s closing, and people are hopping mad. At Reunion, Antiochians come together in support of Antioch College. They do not support the Board of Trustees’ decision to close the college (especially without consultation with the other stakeholders). They do not support the idea of waiting until 2012 to reopen the college. The time is now, or not at all. Antiochians denounce the Trustees for casting aspersions on and for maltreatment of faculty and staff. Those gathered at Reunion go on record as supporting the staff and faculty of Antioch College.

Fast-forward to April, 2009. The college is closed, but a loyal core of Antioch faculty, staff, students, alumni and villagers remain in Yellow Springs. Over the past two years, they have endured an emotional rollercoaster of optimism building to exuberance … only to descend into disappointment as the latest deal falls through. They have endured being unceremoniously thrown off campus and then out of their new headquarters, and then being put on limited occupancy in their current headquarters. They have endured mistreatment, humiliation, ridicule, near-libelous attacks on their qualifications, broken promises, and horrible neglect (mostly from the Trustees and the University). All this on top of the ordinary stresses of a curriculum for which the descriptor “rigorous” would be a laughable understatement. Over the past six or eight months, they have also endured a process which has more than once been likened to learning how to fly a plane while in the air and while stilll building the plane.

This incredible group of Antiochians has worked diligently for almost two years to keep Antioch College alive, making unbelievably generous sacrifices in terms of money, time, energy, talent, and (very importantly) in terms of future economic solvency. Many have put their very futures and those of their families on the line for the sake of Antioch College. (Toxic culture, my ass.)

But now events are fast approaching a crisis point. The program is on life support, with only two months’ financing left through the Alumni Board-and that only barely-and still no assurance from the Board Pro Tem that they will be funded after the end of June.

The Board Pro Tem has informed this dedicated group of Antiochians that they cannot work with them until after the Definitive Agreements with the Board of Trustees have been signed. The ninety-day period set forth in the Letter of Intent signed by both the Board Pro Tem and the Board of Trustees ends on Saturday, April 25th, 2009.

Now, a legal nit-picker might say “Well, that doesn’t count as a promise. They could still get an extension, or sign the agreements in stages. And even if they do sign the Definitive Agreements on the 25th, the Board Pro Tem has no obligations to start working with the Yellow Springs group right off the bat.” An outside observer might also add “Besides, they’re funded for another few months. They can afford to wait a little longer while the Board Pro Tem works on other things.”

The latter of these two hypothetical characters is dead wrong. The former is correct, but completely misses the point.

No one, especially not faculty or staff, can wait until 11:59 June 30th, let alone until July or August, to hear the good news from the Board Pro Tem. Because until the Board makes a commitment to the faculty, staff and students of Antioch College, there can be no certainty among them that the news will be good.

These Antiochians have pinned their future on that of Antioch College, but they cannot do so for much longer. Sad as it is to say, we live in a society which does not automatically guarantee that people who so selflessly contribute to their communities will receive equivalent compensation in the form of resources they require for survival. With the very real possibility that they will not continue to be funded by Antiochians after the end of June, the faculty and staff have to act now to secure positions elsewhere or risk their livelihoods and those of their families. Some are already moving on.

I don’t have any particular insider information, but by my best guess we have two, maybe three weeks for the Board to make a commitment to faculty and staff. If those two or three weeks elapse and still no commitment, I believe that staff and faculty will leave Antioch en masse.

… And then Antioch College will die.

It is true that (rightly or wrongly) we cannot go forward as a college without legal title to the brand name, the buildings or our accreditation. But these things are ultimately peripheral to what makes a college.

At its heart, a college is a community of learners, an educational and political entity dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge and-more importantly-wisdom. A college is a community where people aim to support and educate themselves, each other, and, ultimately, the rest of the world.

For all intents and purposes therefore, we in Yellow Springs are Antioch College, alive and thriving. Look past the name and off-campus structuring, and you will find everything that has made Antioch College the forerunner in the field of higher education. We’re not perfect, but we’re the best there is, and we strive always for a more perfect college, a more perfect world.

But if the Board Pro Tem continues its policy of procrastination, we won’t be much longer.

One of the foremost reasons we fought so hard to separate the college from the university is that we recognized the monstrous injustices the Board of Trustees had committed against the college. We knew that a board which could even consider killing off Antioch had no business running the college under any circumstances.

Well, time is running out. And if Antioch College does die after all, it will not be the University Board that killed it. It will be the Board Pro Tem, for withholding medicine from a dying patient is murder as sure as driving a knife into their heart.

I do not ask the Board Pro Tem to commit to us lock, stock and barrel. I do not advocate a blanket acceptance of every person, structure, and institution associated with Nonstop Antioch. All I am saying is that the Board should (quickly) commit to work with those of us here in Antioch-College-In-All-But-Name as they move forwards toward reopening the campus. Some aspects of the current project will likely have to go, but surely we should be a full party to the decisions of what will be preserved and what negated. (This, as I understand it, was the essential problem with the Agreements in Principle of November 2007. The University understood that they would make a top-down decision about who and what had to go to keep Antioch running, while we assumed that faculty, staff, and other Antiochians would have an equal contribution in making decisions about our own futures.)

Therefore, I call on the Board Pro Tempore within the next ten days to commit (via phone conference or some other venue, as they deem most appropriate) to adopt the suggestions laid out in the “Petition to Support Nonstop” (www.saveantioch.org./), and to take immediate steps to implement those principles.

I call on the larger Save Antioch! community to aid us in this endeavor: to sign the petition, write e-mails, and otherwise express their support for this necessary component of a reopened Antioch College. I also respectfully ask them to pledge and/or donate to the College Revival Fund. We cannot reopen the college without significant financial resources, and the more we get, the better off the project will be.

And I beseech you to treasure up in your hearts these my parting words: Be ashamed to let it die. Be ashamed to make it die.

Lincoln Alpern
Antioch College, class of 2011

The ACCC’s Accreditation Plan, April 22, 2009

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SECURING ACCREDITATION AND DEGREE GRANTING AUTHORITY APRIL 22, 2009

Introduction

Antioch College, as a part of Antioch University, was accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association for the purpose of awarding accredited degrees and was approved by the Ohio Board of Regents to grant degrees in the state of Ohio. Antioch College students enrolled in this accredited and approved institution were eligible to apply for federal financial aid administered by the U.S. Department of Education. Antioch College was also listed by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program of the Department of Homeland Security as approved for international students seeking visas to attend Antioch College.

With the closing of the College in June 2008, except for the ability of students to complete their degrees by December 2008, accreditation has ended. Early in its deliberations, the Board Pro Tempore of the Antioch College Continuation Corporation decided to engage an experienced higher education administrator to investigate what will be required for a re-opened Antioch College to regain its accreditation and approvals.

Our purpose in posting what we have learned in some detail is to foster a shared awareness and understanding of the initial challenges we will face if we are to achieve our goal of re-opening an Antioch College that continues its traditions of being a vibrant, unique, and important institution able to educate coming generations of students to win victories for humanity.

Overview

The process of securing accreditation and approval is a lengthy one. It will require the preparation of many documents and reliable evidence of financial stability and sustainability in order to secure accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association (HLC) and approval togrant degrees from the Ohio Board of Regents (OBR). The good news is that there is vast overlap in the materials and information required by the HLC (for institutional accreditation) and by the Board of Regents (for authorization to grant degrees). Notably, the HLC will judge the institution, whereas the OBR will judge the degree program.

The sobering news is that it is our understanding that there is currently no availability of any provisional accreditation prior to the granting of full accreditation. Further, the HLC will not award accreditation to an institution until at least one class has graduated. Indeed, the HLC will not schedule an initial team visit to determine the institution’s eligibility to be a candidate for accreditation until the first class has enrolled. How will this affect the first graduating class if Antioch College is not accredited until after they have graduated? HLC Handbook of Accreditation stipulates that accreditation, if achieved within one year of the date of graduation of the first class, will apply retroactively to their degrees. From the experience of other new institutions, we have learned that it is possible to make contact with graduate and professional schools to which the first graduates might apply before the College is accredited to explain that their degrees will be retroactively accredited if the College achieves accreditation almost immediately after these students have graduated.

Summary for Approval from OBR and Accreditation by the HLC

As already noted, the process for securing approval to grant a degree from the OBR, and securing accreditation from the HLC involves the submission of many documents that give evidence that the College meets all the standards required for approval and accreditation. The accreditation process begins with a series of conversations and interviews with the HLC. Subsequently, Antioch College will be required to submit a letter of intent and to provide extensive information in the documents listed below. If the information satisfies the OBR approval to grant degrees will be forthcoming but a candidacy visit for accreditation will not be scheduled until the first class has been enrolled. If candidacy is approved a formal application for accreditation will need to be filed, and accreditation visit(s) scheduled. If there is success at each of these steps accreditation approval will follow.

Relationship between Steps among Different Agencies

For the HLC, at the “request for interview” stage, Antioch College must have a certificate of incorporation from Ohio, and “permission” from the state to operate as an institution of higher education. Evidence that Antioch College is pursuing OBR degree-granting authority must also be presented. Accordingly, we will be pursuing parallel tracks with these two agencies as we go forward.

Eligibility for student financial aid from the DOE is dependent upon Antioch College submitting evidence to the satisfaction of the DOE that the College is financially viable and this viability is sustainable. However it will not consider granting financial aid eligibility until accreditation (or perhaps candidacy) is achieved. It is therefore likely that the first students to enroll will not be eligible to apply for federal student financial aid.

Documents Required Prior to Seeking Approval & Accreditation

Before embarking on the formal applications to either OBR or the HLC, Antioch College will be required to assemble a whole range of documents – some of which already exist and/or can be modified, others that will need to be developed. The major documents required include the Articles of Incorporation, By-laws, a Faculty Handbook, a Student Handbook, a Catalog (courses, majors, academic programs, faculty, policies, a Bulletin (listing such time-specific elements as course offerings for the coming year, and a calendar), a Staff handbook and an Administrative Handbook (i.e. personnel policies and procedures for administrators, parallel to faculty handbook), Admissions materials, a Mission Statement and Statements of Goals and Institutional Policies, Governance Statements about the Role of Faculty, information about the College’s administrative structure and reporting relationships and responsibility, evaluation procedures (of the institution, educational outcomes, faculty and staff), policies, and documents, a detailed description of work-partner and off-campus-study arrangements, reporting relationships, staff qualifications, academic record-keeping policies and procedures, faculty and staff recruiting and appointment policies and procedures, a detailed assessment of readiness of physical facilities, detailed financial reports, audits, projections, and budgets, a description of library, laboratory and other instructional space readiness, a description of instructional materials and supplies adequate to the program, and position descriptions for all administrative positions. Other narratives and documents will also be needed but they are not as significant or time consuming as the ones listed here.

Timetable

Constructing a timetable for achieving approval to offer degrees from OBR and accreditation from the HLC requires us to first determine when we will aim to admit the first class and, having done that, to achieve accreditation by the HLC one year after the graduation of that first class. To accept the first class with OBR approval to grant degrees, Antioch College will need to have raised the funds to enable it to renovate all the facilities it plans to use so that they meet required codes and is considered attractive to potential students prior to the matriculation of the first class of students. Antioch College will also need to have, in hand, sufficient resources to operate the institution for the duration of the years it will take for the first admitted students to earn their degrees. As well, all the major documents described above must have been submitted to OBR and accepted in order for OBR to approve Antioch College to grant degrees.

For illustrative purposes, we assume the initial plan holds for Antioch College to grant bachelor degrees after three years of a round the year program of full time study alternating with full time work. Accordingly, if the first class is to be admitted in fall, 2011, in the best scenario of fully accepted documentation and approving site visits, the granting of accredited degrees will first be possible in 2015 with retroactive accreditation provided to the students who graduated in 2014. If the first class is admitted in the fall of 2012 and all documents and visits receive approval, the granting of accredited degrees will first be possible in 2016 with retroactive accreditation provided to the students who graduated in 2015.

The Challenges in Perspective

While it may seem that the tasks ahead of us to accomplish our goals of reviving and reopening Antioch College are daunting they are, in reality, all achievable if we: Raise sufficient resources to renovate the facilities and to support the operation of the College; secure excellent leadership; assemble an initially small cadre of faculty, staff, administrators, and advisers to plan curricula, to prepare the necessary documents, and to envision the future.

As noted above, our purpose in posting all this information is to engender a shared understanding of the magnitude of the efforts we will need to undertake to revive and re-open a new Antioch College that will be able to carry on itsunique role in American higher education fitted to the needs of students who will win victories for humanity in the 21st century.

There is understandable impatience at the thought that it will be a minimum of two years before we can admit the first students, perhaps three. However the Board Pro-Tem is convinced that it is imperative that we ‘get it right’ – from the beginning. We need to insure that the presence of sound and sustainable financial resources, an attractive student-friendly campus, fine and dedicated faculty and staff match the considerable excitement of the ideas for a new era for Antioch College. We need to be able to recruit and select those special students who care to be effective, life-long change agents in whatever they choose to do. We need to be able to nurture over many years an Antioch College that is deeply committed to the vision of the possibilities inherent in the three Cs for learning: classroom, co-op, and community.

Antioch College was founded more than 150 years ago. Across these years the College closed twice. In some ways, each time it re-opened it began anew while carrying forward its commitment to progressive education and to innovation. This time, daunting as the challenges are, it must be our goal to insure that Antioch College will not only re-open but will endure for another 150 years.

ProTem Board Member of the Week: Nancy Crow

Why did you agree to be a Pro Tem Board member?

Well, of course I’m in a somewhat different position from other Pro Tem Board members because I am there ex officio as the president of the Antioch College Alumni Association. And of course, we could go back to 2000 to talk about why I am on the Antioch College Alumni Association. I’ve actually been on the board, the alumni board, since 2000, and was elected first vice-president, served as vice-president for four years, and now in my second two-year term as president of the board. I was on the University Board of Trustees, as an ex officio member, until February 18th when the board was reconstituted as a Board of Governors with individual subordinate boards for the campuses in the Antioch University system. At that point I was off the board because there was no longer a position in the bylaws for Antioch College, and I was able to move onto the Board Pro Tem. I had been meeting with the board Pro Tem, and in person meeting in December in New York as an invited guest, so I’d been very much a part of the process.

So you served on the UBOT, how was that, how did cope with that … over the last two years with the college closing and everything?

It was very challenging, very, very difficult, I think I did a lot of good work both in representing the interests of the college alumni and also in forwarding the interests of the university as a whole. I served on the Governance Committee which reconfigured the governance structure for the University Board of Trustees and to the University Board of Governors, and of course when I started my work on that committee the thought was that we would be able to create a Board of Trustees for Antioch College that would have sufficient authority that it would satisfy the concerns not only of the alumni and um, major donors, but also of potential, you know, high quality presidents for the organization, because it became very clear that one of the reasons why the college has suffered in recent years was because the president of the college didn’t have his or her own board that was paying attention solely to the college, and that’s what’s so exciting now about the Board Pro Tem … once we have the keys to the college, we will have a Board of Trustees that’s solely dedicated to Antioch College, and it will be able to hire quality presidents and quality faculty, and really attract the um, students who are looking at other comparable schools, … the schools in our peer group, although, frankly the schools in our peer group, although they are wonderful colleges, in particular I have to give praise to the Great Lakes Colleges Association, which Antioch College was a founding member, because it has provided such tremendous support and guidance, particularly … the president of the Great Lakes Colleges Association, all of our sister and brother schools within the Great Lakes Colleges Association are wonderful, wonderful places, and each one offers a somewhat different educational experience, and of course, one of the reasons, to go back to your question about why I’m on the Board Pro Tem, is because I believe that Antioch College can offer an experience, an educational experience that students need today and really is not duplicated anywhere else.

So now you’re on both on the Board Pro Tem and on the Antioch College Alumni Association as the president, how do you negotiate these roles?

It’s extraordinarily time consuming, and one of my goals right now is trying to help guide the Alumni Board back towards a more traditional Alumni Association role, now that we do have the Board Pro Tem that will be able to take stewardship in fiduciary responsibility for the College, what has happened, and I know this is a phrase that Jeanne likes to use, is that things have developed kind of organically and very quickly, the creation of a lot of ad-hoc committees, responding [to] the the University’s sudden announcement in June of 2007 that it was going to suspend operations of the College up to the creation of Nonstop is that we moved very, very quickly and we have, as I said last summer at reunion, gone places no alumni association has ever gone before and you know as a result things have been very, very quick to develop and um, not always understandable. We have, in typical Antioch fashion, developed scores of, (it’s probably a score, maybe it’s just dozens) of um, entities that go by many different names, and being Antiochians of course we have acronyms for all of them. … from the UBOG to the UBOTs to the ZBOT to the TAG and um, it’s very confusing and what I’m trying to do right now is trying to create a somewhat more understandable, easier to understand structure that is going to continue to evolve and that’s helping me. And I also think in answer to the two hats I wear question, that it’s very important for the alumni who, after all, are going to be the foundation for the rebuilding of Antioch College, to have a voice among the Board Pro Tem, which should, soon I hope, no longer be the Board Pro Tem, but the Antioch College Board of Trustees.

What is your vision for the new Antioch?

Well, as I was saying, oh was it the last week or the week before, I was speaking to a Chicago alumni group, as I was talking about the Board Pro Tem, I was focusing on right now the Board Pro Tem is looking at what the needs are for a world-class college, our educational needs today and the world yet to come. We want to create inquiring, knowledgeable, flexible human beings who can respond to the rapidly changing world today using the skills that they’ve learned in, of course, the familiar fundamentals of an Antioch education, rigorous classroom, community governance and co-op.

The concept paper, which is of course, in some form up for discussion up on the Internet and there’ve been a number of comments related to it. It is an evolving document but it does represent the ideas that the Board Pro Tem is exploring.

How do you think Nonstop will be integrated into the new Antioch?

That’s a very good question. And I don’t think we know yet. Right now the Alumni Board at its last meeting in March on campus, authorized a task-force which is going to help the folks who have been working on proposals for the future of Nonstop, to refine those proposals for presentation to the Board Pro Tem. What we’re anticipating is that those ideas, recommendations, will be ready for presentation at the time that the definitive agreements are entered into which we’re still looking at, I hope, you know, around April 25th date for the definitive agreements. I don’t know whether there will be any slippage in that, but that’s around the end of the 90 day due diligence period for the definitive agreements. So what I’m anticipating is that the task-force will come up with a series of recommendations. The presentation that we heard in March was excellent, it gave a lot of different ideas, about how people from Nonstop, ideas from Nonstop, … can form the foundation for planning for the future of Antioch College. Exactly how that’s going to happen I don’t know, but of course Nonstop has been the keeper of the flame, and has a lot of wonderful people, and wonderful ideas that will help move the process further, but exactly how they’re going to be integrated really hasn’t been decided yet.

It’s unfortunate that we are ending the fiscal year that the Alumni Board was able to commit to through CRF to Nonstop and we don’t yet have the keys to the College, which means the Board Pro Tem is not yet in position to make any commitment to Nonstop and that’s, there may be a gap, I hope it’s not too much of a gap and I’d rather of course not have a gap at all. I’d like to just have an evolution, but I’m hoping that a lot of the great work that Nonstop has done will evolve into work, and part of that is going to, of course, require us to do some reflection, which is again, very Antiochian, um, and what we’ve learned from Nonstop and the experiences of Nonstop.

What was your major? …

I graduated in 1970, I started Antioch in 1966, at that time Antioch was a five-year program, but by testing out of certain general ed requirements I was able to graduate in four … The men did not avail themselves of that option because … the men were subject to the draft, I wasn’t subject to the draft, and therefore I graduated in four years. My major was in the combined departments of Sociology and Anthropology with a focus on Sociology.

What is the most important thing that Antioch taught you?

Great question. The most important thing, the most important thing that Antioch taught me was to be open to new experiences and to examine those experiences and understand them and learn from them.
What did your Antioch look like, or what is “your Antioch”?

The Antioch of my era? … Well, of course it was a much larger student body than it became in later years, and there were a lot of buildings that are now gone on the now temporarily closed campus. And as a result there were people in my graduating class that I never knew. It was interesting: I came back for my 25th reunion, not having come back to Antioch since I left in 1970, and I left without actually going through graduation … I got my degree [laughs], it’s hanging on my wall, but I didn’t go through graduation. In part because it was a very weird time, it was the time of Kent State, which created a huge disruption in Ohio in particular and all over the world. And I came back 25 years later and the first person I saw from the class of 1970 I looked at, and she looked at me, and we said “I’ve never seen you before in my life!” [laughs] which is kind of funny, is that there were half of us on campus at any one time and half of us were out either on co-op or on AEA, and there were a lot of people on campus, a lot of different areas of interest, a lot of pockets of special interests that, they weren’t called, you know, the Independent Groups at that time, but we had them, including of course a great many very politically oriented groups, this was the time of the Vietnam War, it was still the time of the civil rights movement and there were people on campus who were very, very active in those movements, and it’s interesting, one of the other movements that really was just beginning at that time was the environmental movement which was also a strong focus on campus and the very first Earth Day occurred while I was on campus, I think it was April of ’70, and there were people very, very passionately involved in creating Earth Day and it’s fascinating to see how it’s developed in the 39 years since then.
The classes were compelling and challenging, so much so that when I got to law school which I went to after I took a year break traveling around Europe, were so challenging … when I got to law school I found law school to be pretty easy, it was interesting to run into people who’d gone to other schools who say, “Oh, my gosh, I’m terrified, I’ve never written a twenty-page paper before,” and I think I had to write at least a twenty-page paper for almost every class, except of course in math classes.

Anything else you would like to say about being on the Pro Tem Board or as the president of the Alumni Association?

Well, Antioch’s education made a huge difference in my life, in addition to what I said before, another aspect of my Antioch education was my ability to learn and explore areas outside of my career, like film for example, something that was a big focus at Antioch and that I’ve enjoyed film ever since, the ability of Antioch College to provide people with an education for their entire lives is something which is very, very important and one of the reasons why I believe so passionately in what we are doing to ensure that Antioch College can continue as a residential liberal arts college that prepares people for life and for future leadership.