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 VOL. 23, NO. 11DECEMBER 5, 1997 


FROM THE SENATE

Committee Named to Review Sexual Assault Policy

Marijuana Reform Groups Asks Senate to Review Research at CAVA


 BY TOM MATHEWSON

The University Senate heard reports from its External Relations and Student Affairs committees and discussed library policy at its Nov. 21 meeting. Thirty-four senators were present, seven short of quorum.

  In his report, President George Rupp mentioned the study recently produced by Executive Vice President for Administration Emily Lloyd, "Columbia University in Morningside Heights: A Planning Framework." Copies are available in the Senate office for members of the Columbia community to read there.

  Rupp also discussed a recent letter to all senators from the Columbia chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, asking the Senate to review the research program of the Columbia Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, and require the center to submit its research to academic peer review and to allow more involvement in its activities by Columbia faculty and students. Rupp pointed out that the Senate resolution establishing the center in December 1991 had called for a review of the program after three years. That review had not occurred.

  Sen. Paul Duby, chairman of the Executive Committee, announced the formation of a subcommittee to conduct a review of the University policy on sexual misconduct, which the Senate had approved in April 1995. The members are Senators Leora Hanser (BC'99) Brett Busby, (Law student) Wayne Svoboda, (nontenured, Journalism), Debra Wolgemuth (tenured, Health Sciences), and Patsy Catapano, a lawyer from the Office of the General Counsel.

  There was brief discussion of library policy, the subject of a Senate hearing on Nov. 18 and of a strategic action plan to be released by the administration on Nov. 24. (See related articles, Page 4)

  Several senators said the plan should be discussed in detail at the December Senate meeting, along with the report of an external review committee chaired by Billy Frye that had been completed in May.

  Sen. Eben Moglen (tenured, Law) said he will introduce legislation before the December meeting to address long-standing problems in the allocation of resources for the libraries by "instituting a faculty receivership for the library system."

  Provost Jonathan R. Cole, also a senator, objected to this approach, and appealed to senators to read the action plan before forming opinions.

  Sen. Eugene Litwak (tenured, GSAS/SS), chairman of the External Relations Committee, praised the University's current community relations initiatives in Harlem. He said the committee will be considering the University's national standing as a research institution, with an attempt to grasp the implications and the context of various rankings.

  Sen. Josh Ratner (CC'98), chairman of Student Affairs, said his committee will be considering legislation on a teaching resource center, an idea supported in Senate resolutions and reports since 1991 which had still not come to fruition. The committee also planned to assist in the review of the sexual misconduct policy by soliciting student opinion, perhaps in hearings.

  Finally, student senators will be talking with University Chaplain Jewelnel Davis about the relations between Earl Hall and various student groups and populations.

  The Senate's next meeting is on Dec. 12. Anyone with a Columbia I.D. is welcome.






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