As the college continues to solidify and extend its graduate program, the School of Business and the School of Education will start next fall. The new direction will take the college’s graduate education and business departments and place them into separate ‘schools.’ Professor Jane Boyer, who will be the Dean of the School of Education, said that the school system is a common way for graduate and professional schools to be set up. “This will allow us greater visibility outside of Mills and allow us to serve our students in a much better way,” Boyer said. “The new structure will add an efficiency, recognition and signature to our graduate and professional programs.”According to Boyer, under the current system Mills isn’t represented among other professional or business schools. She said the new system will offer credit to Mills as a whole. The dean of the School of Business will be professor Nancy Thornborrow. President Janet Holmgren said the deans will have budgetary authority and responsibilities, as well as more direct involvement in faculty and staffing decisions. “It’s time for us to get more serious about the administration of our academic programs,” Holmgren said.Still undecided is the possibility of putting the school system to use in the undergraduate school. “That may be. But as of now, the School of Education will be the pilot for the new structure and the School of Business will soon follow,” Boyer said.
Currently Mills is operating around departments. These departments are further clustered into divisions. Thecollege has five divisions: education, fine arts, letters, natural sciences and social sciences.
“We’re starting slowly. It’s not been made official, we still have to present it to the trustees but we are moving in the direction of schools,” said Mary-Ann Milford, Provost and Dean of the Faculty. “We’re not rushing into it — we’ve done our homework. But we want to do what’s right for women.”
“We have an undergraduate, liberal arts education for women that is central to the work we do. That will not change at all under the new system,” Boyer said.