Students Ask for Debate of Report

Dowling Committee Member Urges Quick Disclosure

Natasha Pearl '82, a member of the Dowling Committee to review student governance at Harvard, and two Student Assembly members last night urged that the Dowling Committee report, to be given to Dean Fox Wednesday, be made public as soon as possible.

Their statement followed Pearl's off-the-record presentation of an outline of the Committee's proposal to the members of the Assembly.

The report is expected to be publicly released sometime this week, although Dean Fox will not confirm this.

It is not clear whether revisions in the report stemming from student debate will be included. Assembly members said. A meeting of the Dowling Committee to approve the final report is scheduled for tomorrow.

"All Harvard students have the right to participate in the discussion of the report, Andrew B. Herrmann '82, chairman of the assembly, said after last night's meeting, adding that more private discussions were "redundant."


Kenneth Levine '83, chairman of the Student Assembly until Herrmann's election last week, said after the meeting that students should have a chance to make changes in the Dowling report before it is presented to the student body for a final vote.

Levine added that he would oppose any changes in the present form of student government that would hinder student rights, "regardless of any financial support the proposal might give to student groups."

Some assembly members said all the Dowling Committee meetings should have been open to the public. Although coverage of early meetings was allowed, the meetings were closed when the actual drafting of the proposal began.

"The student body should have been aware of the deliberations that the committee threw out," Linda S. Drucker '82, the newly elected chairman of the Student Assembly's student rights committee and a Crimson editor, said, adding that "it is a bad policy to keep the meetings secret."

The Dowling committee's last meeting will be held tomorrow night and will be closed to the public. The next morning the report will be given to Dean Fox, who set the committee up last fall.

Fox said last night that he did not know when the report would be available to the public since he had not yet received it and did not participate in committee decisions.

John E. Dowling '57, professor of Biology and chairman of the committee, defended the policy of holding confidential meetings, saying the contents of the report had not been discussed in public because details of the report were still "being hammered out."

He added that the committee was not trying to be secretive and that he hoped the report would be widely disseminated. Dowling said there should be "no surprises" since the main body of the report was discussed during the fall, when the committee meetings were open.


The report is expected to recommend the formation of a centralized student council which would include the present Committee on Undergraduate Education and the Committee on. Houses and Undergraduate Life.