The Corporation has reversed a long standing policy by appointing a paid instructor for undergraduate debating, Dean Watson announced yesterday. This marks the first time the University has granted compensation to a member of the faculty for work with an undergraduate organization.
Charles E. Parkhurst, instructor in Public Speaking, will fill the position of Executive Adviser on Debating, beginning immediately. Parkhurst has been acting as faculty adviser to the Debate Council for a year and a half.
Dean Watson said that Parkhurst would get a "small stipend" for his work this spring, and indicated that future salary policy would be contingent on the work involved.
Parkhurst reported that under the present arrangement he will receive an additional salary this spring for his work. The Administration will then discontinue this payment in the fall, but it will also attempt to reduce his academic duties to allow for the expanded debating program.
Since there are now two men in the speech department, there would appear to be little chance that Parkhurst's academic duties could be appreciably reduced without making drastic reductions in the present speech program. There are no plans at present for an enlarged department staff.
Parkhurst has actually been carrying the duties which the Corporation officially conferred on him, since September, 1953. He will continue his work with the Debate Council under the new rules, coaching the debaters, and travelling with them to intercollegiate debates.
The new adviser hopes for intramural debating next fall and reports strong support from Housemasters. He has not yet evolved a final plan, however, and will visit New Haven this month to study the Yale debating program.