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Kim Delivers First Faculty Address

In his first address to the general faculty, President Jim Yong Kim stressed that, “Faculty input is crucial on the full range of issues and opportunities that concern the College.” The need for faculty participation, he said, is critical both in developing opportunities, such as the renewal of the Great Issues course, and in meeting challenges including the current budget imbalance.

Kim and faculty

English Professor Thomas Luxon asks President Kim about developing creative solutions to measure learning at the October 26 faculty address. (Photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)

Faculty from the arts and sciences and the professional schools filled Alumni Hall on October 26 to hear President Kim’s remarks and ask questions. Kim set the tone by stating that his goal was to gather ideas and “begin a conversation,” so that future plans and actions would reflect the entire Dartmouth community.

Kim lauded faculty for their success in marrying excellence in teaching and research, in line with the College’s “comprehensive vision of the liberal arts.” Dartmouth’s unique institutional model, “with its ability to unite passion and practicality, will have a major and increasing role to play in forming the leaders who can tackle [our greatest] problems. ... the knowledge emerging from our faculty research will contribute directly and substantially to those solutions.”

Looking ahead, Kim identified a need for better tools to measure success in teaching. “What are the signs that allow you to assess your own pedagogical work and discern new approaches that may prove even more fruitful?” he asked. “Making explicit this intuitive understanding among skilled practitioners is a key part of what I mean by measurement.”

Kim also addressed the effect of the economic crisis on the College: “Simply said, our financials are out of balance. Our expenses are greater than our revenues. … Current challenges force us to think in new, entrepreneurial ways and devise new models. Business as usual is not an option.”

Outlining the need to reduce expenses while increasing philanthropic donations and revenue, Kim emphasized that he plans “to work collaboratively and creatively, engaging the whole community, to find solutions.”

“I take this as a spur to our creativity and our ambitions for Dartmouth,” he said. “In ten years, Dartmouth will celebrate the 250th anniversary of its founding . . . Let’s also keep our eyes on that horizon and envision together the Dartmouth we want the world to see at that moment.”

By SARAH MEMMI

Last Updated: 1/7/10