USEFUL TERMS & DEFINITIONS
Program vs. Department: Our efforts this year are for a program, not a department. The distinction is that a department is a formalized body with a major and/or concentration, in-house faculty members, and resources. A program is a formalized body of courses with interdisciplinary faculty members and resources; it can formally offer a concentration (our request) like Justice and Law, Latinx Studies, or Environmental Studies, or it may not offer a concentration like Linguistics or Film and Media Studies.
Full-time employee (FTE): This term refers to the position that a faculty members occupies based on the number of courses they teach in a given field. 1.0 FTE is the equivalent of 4 courses per year. Tenure-track or tenured professors are considered to contribute a total of 1.0 FTEs (or four courses) to the college as a whole. A program generally requires at least a dedicated course-load of 3.0 FTEs (or 12 courses) to be established. Even if more professors are hired in a given field, it is also important that their FTEs (aka courses) are dedicated specifically to Asian American Studies; otherwise, their hirings do not contribute to the establishment of the program.
Professor Scott Wong (in History) and Professor Dorothy Wang (American Studies) each regularly offer two Asian American Studies courses per year. However, when they are on leave (as Professor Wang is now), their home departments are not obligated to find replacement FTEs to teach Asian American Studies courses. Although two tenure-track Assistant Professors have been hired in areas related to Asian American Studies (Professor Vivian Huang in WGSS and Professor Munjulika Tarah in Dance), their primary obligation is to teach courses in WGSS and Dance, not Asian American Studies; they will likely be unable to contribute more than 0.25 FTEs or one course in Asian American Studies per year. Also note that Professor Scott Wong will be leaving in 2021, and the History Department has made no commitment towards replacing his position.
No-growth period: This means that Williams College will maintain, and will not increase, the current number of FTEs. Therefore, the only new faculty members that will be hired will be to replace or to re-allocate the FTE of a retiring faculty member. We are currently in a no-growth period until 2025, making the hiring of Asian Americanists harder than ever before.
Curricular Planning Committee (CPC): This committee is formed by members of the administration (President, Dean of the Faculty, and Provost) and six additional faculty members. The CPC makes recommendations to the CAP (below) on the hiring of additional faculty members. They examine criteria such as enrollment per FTE added, budget allocation for faculty members, and more.
CPC Working Group: This is the group formed by the CPC that will be considering the formation of an Asian American Studies program throughout the 2018-2019 school year. The names of this group have not yet been released by the CPC chair, Professor Nugent, though their first meeting will be in the beginning of September. Last year, the CPC and administration vouched that members of the movement will be allowed to sit on this working group, though this has remained unconfirmed.
Committee on Educational Affairs (CEA): This committee is formed by members of the administration (President, Dean of Faculty, Provost, Assistant Dean of the Faculty, and Registrar), seven additional faculty members, and six students. The CEA makes recommendations to the CAP (below) on the establishment of programs, concentrations, majors, departments, and other formalized structures. They examine criteria such as interdisciplinary cross-listings, course reader clusters, and more.
Committee on Appointments & Promotions (CAP): This committee is formed by members of the administration (President, Dean of the Faculty, and Provost) and three additional faculty members. The CAP holds the ability to accept or reject recommendations made by the CPC and CEA. They hold a large amount of power in the hiring of professors and establishment of programs.