Six Elected to Faculty Council
New Members to Enter Current Core, Child Care Discussion
The Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) elected six representatives from the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences to serve on the Faculty Council for the 1997-98 academic year, Dean of FAS Jeremy R. Knowles announced yesterday.
Professors Peter Buck, Melissa Franklin, Warren D. Goldfarb '69, Michael Hasselmo '84, Carolyn M. Hoxby '88 and Richard F. Thomas will serve three-year terms on the Faculty's decision-making body, which has 18 members.
They will join the council in the midst of several controversial debates, including the one over Core reform.
While legislation on the Core, proposed by the Faculty's Core Reform Committee, is likely to pass at the Faculty's May 20 meeting, the incoming council members will help shape the debate on other issues, such as junior Faculty compensation and child care provisions.
Buck, who is a senior lecturer on the history of science and dean of the Summer School, said he does not plan to bring specific questions before the council.
"I go into this with an open mind," said Buck, who has taught "on and off" at Harvard since the late 1960's.
Buck said he feels that junior Faculty, whose salaries and benefits the council considered this year, should be paid more.
"I think junior Faculty are underpaid and that ways should be found to increase the compensation that they get," Buck said. "It's in Harvard's best interest to attract the junior Faculty that we need."
Goldfarb, Pearson Professor of Modern Mathematics and Mathematical Logic, said he thinks his sexual orientation may have played a role in his election to the council.
"I suspect one reason many people on the Faculty voted for me is my position as an openly gay Faculty member," said Goldfarb, who has studied and taught continuously at the University since 1965.
Although he is on leave this academic year, Goldfarb said he is following the debate over Core reform.
"I certainly hope to weigh in on what will be discussed in the fall," he said. "I myself am inclined to reduce the Core requirements, but I want to study all the proposals in depth first."
Hasselmo, a junior psychology professor and resident tutor in Eliot House who lived in Dunster House as an undergraduate, said he supports Core reform.
"I'm very much in favor of changing the structure of the core," said Hasselmo, Loeb Associate Professor of the Social Sciences.
The father of two young children, Hasselmo said he is particularly sensitive to the issues facing faculty parents.
Hasselmo's three year old daughter currently attends the Soldiers Field day care center.
As a patron of University-sponsored child care, Hasselman said he plans to push for a FAS-run day care facility.
Although his own experience at the University has been "quite positive," University has been "quite positive," Hasselmo said he also plans to call attention to ways in which junior Faculty members could be treated better.
"There's clearly a larger division between senior and junior Faculty at Harvard than at other universities," Hasselmo said. "There's a lot of additional stress associated with low rates of tenure."
Hoxby, an assistant professor of economics, said she plans to concentrate on similar issues.
Like Hasselmo, Hoxby highlighted the importance of available, affordable child care for Faculty members.
"The child care issue is a very important difficulty, especially for female Faculty, but for male Faculty as well," she said.
Thomas, who endorsed an amendment to the Core legislation which the Faculty will debate in two weeks, said he wishes students were required to take additional foreign language courses.
The classics professor, an outgoing member of the University Library Committee, said he is also committed to maintaining "the excellence of the library in all its parts."
"I see that as a very important part of the reason why Harvard is what Harvard is," Thomas said.
Knowles will appoint an alternate professor to serve in Franklin's place because Franklin, a professor of physics, will be on leave next year.
She could not be reached for comment last night.
Before the election ballots were mailed to all the professors, colleagues nominated the new council members, who represent a cross-section of tenured and junior faculty.