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Procedure for the Identification of Residential College Masters

1. The Provost asks each college in which a vacancy is forthcoming to form a five person Committee to Assist in the Selection of a New Master, hereafter referred to as the Committee.  The Executive Board or other appropriate body in each college devises a method for selecting three students from the college to serve on the Committee. The Provost’s Office assists with the selection of a current or former residential college master (excluding the retiring master) and a residential college faculty fellow, ideally from the college in question, to serve on the Committee.

2.  The Provost sends a letter to the faculty fellows affiliated with the residential college announcing masterships about to be open and soliciting nominations and self-nominations of faculty for those positions.  The letter asks that each letter of nomination or self nomination include a paragraph describing the qualifications of the nominee.  Unless it is clear that a person would be an appropriate master for only one college, letters received are shared with the Committee to Assist in the Selection of a New Master formed in each of the colleges with impending vacancies.

3. The Provost sends a letter to the students in each residential college with a forthcoming vacancy soliciting nominations for the mastership of that college and asking that nominations be directed to the college Committee.

4. The Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education, Executive Director of Residential Services and/or the Director of Residential Academic Initiatives meet with each college Committee to discuss the mastership and the process to be followed.  The Committee consults the general college community regarding specific qualifications for the mastership of that college and seek the names of prospects for them. The Committee’s discussions of individual prospects are to be confidential and no prospective masters should be contacted regarding their interest in the position. The Committee is encouraged to consult regularly with the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education regarding the progress of its search.

5. Following its review of nominations received -- including nominations generated by the Committee itself -- the Committee presents to the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education a report recommending no fewer than twelve faculty (unranked) who are considered to be appropriate for further consideration for the mastership.  The report briefly describes the reasons each person is included on this list.

6. After reviewing the Committee’s report, the Provost’s Office contacts those persons on the list deemed to be viable prospects to advise them that they have been identified as a possible master and to urge them to meet with the college’s Committee to explore this possibility. 

7. After the Provost’s Office has contacted the prospects, the Committee meets with each prospect to discuss the mastership.

8. Following the meetings with the prospects, the Committee submits to the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education a report on the discussions with the prospects.  The report identifies the strengths and weaknesses of each of the prospects, but the report does not rank the prospects. 

9. Following review of the report from the Committee and discussion with members of the Committee, representative(s) from the Office of the Provost and Student Affairs meets with the persons with whom the Committee has met to discuss the mastership and then advises one or more of those persons that the College is eager to pursue with him/her the possibility of his/her accepting the mastership. The student college membership is notified of the leading prospects for the mastership and arrangements are made for them to meet.  

10. The Committee reports to the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education on these general meetings, with special attention to the comfort of the college membership to the appointment of any of these persons as master.  The Provost then formally invites one of these persons with whom the college is comfortable to accept the mastership.

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