August 2011 Archways


Major Changes in Bryn Mawr’s Grad Programs

The College has concluded two reviews of graduate departments and programs. One dealt with strategic curriculum and faculty planning, looking at everything from faculty workload to enrollment trends and future program viability. The other evaluated all graduate programs, as recommended by the Task Force on Balancing Mission and Resources in a 2008 report to the Board of Trustees.

In this comprehensive review by the Committee on Academic Priorities (CAP), the Provost’s office, the general faculty and the administration, the College reaffirmed its commitment to the Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research and the Graduate Group in Archaeology, Classics, and History of Art. It has extended the evaluation process of the graduate programs in physics, chemistry and math.

Part of CAP’s charge for the year was to recommend strategic cuts to some academic areas so that the resulting resources could be redistributed to support curricular innovation and more competitive faculty salaries. As part of this effort, the report includes a recommendation to discontinue offering graduate studies in psychology. The teaching resources that will be saved by ending the graduate program will be redirected to the thriving undergraduate program in psychology.

The College will also close the freestanding master’s program in French. However, there is a recommendation that the College revisit some of its current policies to allow for future four- and five-year A.B./M.A. programs, which could include French. For more details, go to

Athletic Field in Motion

Applebee Field

Construction begins to renovate Applebee Field from a grass surface to a new multiuse synthetic turf field. The new field will be home to the lacrosse and soccer teams and host field hockey games. It will also hold various events, programs and student functions throughout the year. Visit throughout the summer for updates and photos of the construction.

Photographs Go Public for the First Time

Zoe Strauss’s Pottsville, PA (Half House Pink), 2009

Double Take: Selected Views from the Photography Collection at Bryn Mawr College, 1867–2009 is the first major exhibition of the College’s rich photography holdings. The exhibit spans almost the entire history of the photographic medium. The more than 65 photographs are hung in pairs to prompt viewers to compare and contrast the images. Double Take will be on view in Bryn Mawr’s Canaday Library from September 27 through December 22, Tuesday through Saturday from noon to 4:30 p.m., and will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue and related programming. This exhibition is free and open to the public. For further information, please contact Eric Pumroy, director of library collections, at 610.526.5335, or

Plan to Enhance Faculty Mentoring

The faculty voted to explore further an academic blueprint that would reward professors in a more concrete way for time spent mentoring and advising students.

“Bryn Mawr has always prided itself on our faculty/student interaction,” says Provost Kim Cassidy. “This plan rightfully acknowledges the importance of the mentoring role faculty play by treating that time [spent mentoring] just as we do time in the classroom.”

Under the plan, which was drafted by the Committee on Academic Priorities in consultation with the general faculty, faculty members would be able to choose between teaching five courses in a given academic year or four courses with added time spent on advising and mentoring students.

The plan also calls on each department and program to create more varied academic and individually tailored pathways to getting a degree. This would allow greater diversity in how students present intellectual work, including multimedia and digital formats, or as material that can be used in public forums (e.g., opinion pieces, web-based media).

The development and implementation of this blueprint is funded in part by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation as part of a $1 million grant the College received for its ongoing efforts to create “an innovative and sustainable liberal arts curriculum for the 21st century.” For more, go to