Embracing change: SMC, the buyout, & what you can do

IMG_3809Our front cover story of this issue of The Defender reveals that 41 faculty and staff from St. Michael’s have agreed to a voluntary separation package, or as you may know it- a buyout.
Fifteen professors and twenty-six staff members who make a significant impact on our campus will be gone by the spring of 2018.

St. Michael’s will lose a lot of great minds and helping hands with this voluntary separation package.

It’s sad to see our community lose such integral members of it’s fabric. It’s also impossible not to wonder what their absence will mean for those remaining at St. Michael’s for the coming years.

Those taking the separation agreement retire early with compensation and overall, the voluntary separation program will save St. Michael’s $3 million. But what will the future of St. Michael’s look like without these 41 people?

The college is beginning to and has already undergone a series of changes, and as St. Michael’s evolves into it’s next incarnation, we’re all wondering what is coming next.Change, and perhaps a slightly different version of the school we’re all familiar with, is on it’s way.

The voluntary separation package will impact departments that will lose core faculty and there is a chance that certain courses may not be offered any longer.There is genuine concern that our college may suffer when these individuals leave.

So what can we, the students, alumni, faculty, and staff at St. Michael’s, do?
As a community built on service and academic excellence, we need to carry on those pursuits, perhaps more than ever.

There is a lot of hope and potential in the future of St. Michael’s- from professors going the extra mile and offering pop up classes for the sake of teaching students to students on campus working to create conversation and being involved with the community through events and service.

Our community is strong, creative, thoughtful, and, more importantly in light of changes that lay ahead– adaptable.
It’s easy as students to forget that there was a St. Michael’s long before we came here, and that there will be one long after we leave. And with the times come new incarnations of the college, often for the best.

As the institution that has had such an influence on our lives undergoes its own journey to its next stage, perhaps we can work to make a mark on it the way it has marked us- by living up to the ideals this institution celebrates.