I will be posting more material associated with the debate over Williams in New York. Below is the letter that Professor Robert Jackall sent to faculty members in response to the Waters Report. Comments:

1) How is this report delivered to faculty members? Is there an e-mail list for all faculty at Williams that something like this (and other material) goes out on? Or physical copies put in faculty mail boxes? I am always curious about the mechanics of exactly how Williams functions.

2) It is a shame that material like this is not made public. Any document that is distributed to 300 faculty members is, essentially, in the public domain anyway. It is not hard (for me) to find an anonymous source to provide a copy as I have done here. But it is a bother. Any document like this should be posted on the web. The College is doing somewhat better on this front (note the collection of letters from the President and the Provost) but more transparency is better.

3) For those to lazy to read Jackall’s response, I will summarize and comment. He offers three arguments for a No vote (which would keep WNY going). First, the Report does a shoddy job of gathering and presenting data. Second, it “misstates” the costs of WNY. Jackall clearly wins on both these points. Indeed, if I were the person (Morty?) in the Administration who wanted to end WNY, I would be upset about what a subpar job the Committee did. Even if you didn’t think that you would learn much from interviewing the students from Fall 2007, you still needed to do so. Jackall argues, third, that the Committee misunderstands the purpose of WNY. I think that there is a lot more to be said about this aspect of the debate, but not today.

                  May 2008

The Williams College Faculty

Robert Jackall, Co-director, Williams in New York

Response to the Williams in New York
Review Committee Report

At the May 2001 faculty meeting,
the Williams College faculty voted to establish an Experiential Education
Initiative with the Williams in New York Program (WNY) at its core.
Sixty-seven (67) percent of Williams faculty approved the
Voting was by written ballot and
included absentee ballots cast by faculty
who could not attend the meeting.

A pilot WNY program began in
fall 2005, followed by pilot programs in the semesters of fall 2006,
spring 2007, fall 2007, and spring 2008. A total of 38 Williams students
have participated in these five pilot semesters. See Appendix
for the list of participating students.

In summer 2007, the Dean of
Faculty constituted a Williams in New York Review Committee, chaired
by Professor Chris Waters, to evaluate the WNY program and make recommendations
to the faculty about its future. You recently received a report from
that committee. Six committee members oppose the continuance of the
program. Three committee members support its continuance in modified
form, backed by the College’s resources.

The committee has framed a
proposition for the 7 May 2008 faculty meeting so that:

A YES vote

TERMINATES the WNY program

    A NO vote
    CONTINUES the WNY program, requiring
    the College to take all necessary steps to
    “modify the Williams in New York program to promote its viability”.

I urge colleagues to vote
NO on the review committee’s proposition.

following summary presents the three most important reasons for
a NO vote. (See pages 2-5)

More detailed notes on the
report appear on pages 5-9. Appendices (numbered 1-5 in Arabic numerals)
begin on page 10.

Summary arguments to
support a NO vote

  1. The review committee
    proposes that the faculty vote on the fate of the Williams in New
    York program on the basis of inadequate information.


    • The committee
      misstates and misrepresents the data
      on which it reached its conclusions
      about the issue of participants’ assessment of the educational value
      of the program. Appendix One
      of the review committee’s report states that the committee employed
      the following documents in assessing the program:

      “Finally, documents
      pertaining to students included summaries of the interviews undertaken
      each semester (both pre-enrollment and post-enrollment) by John Gerry
      (Associate Dean of the Faculty) and/or Paula Consolini (Coordinator
      of Experiential Education), a written summary of the two interviews
      undertaken by the committee chair in May 2007 with students accepted
      to study in New York in the Fall of 2007
      , and thoughtful, written
      testimonials provided by more than three quarters of all the students
      ever enrolled in the Program in response to the committee chair’s
      request for personal reflections about the Program from all former WNY
      See Appendix 4 for
      Professor Waters’s letter soliciting
      student materials.

    • But the committee
      did not interview any of the 16 students in the fall 2007 and spring
      2008 WNY program after they completed their semesters nor did it receive
      “written testimonials” from them
      . These 16 students comprise 42 percent
      of all students who have participated thus far in the program [16/38].
      See Appendix 5 for an e-signed statement from these 16
      students in the fall 2007 and spring 2008 editions of WNY. These students

      We were not interviewed
      about our WNY experiences by anyone on the WNY Review Committee AFTER
      our semesters ended, nor did we receive from anyone on the Committee
      any request for ‘written testimonials’ about our experiences AFTER
      our semesters in the program.”


              SPRING 2008
              Melissa Barton
              Sarah Cobb ‘09
              Nichole Beiner
              Caitlin Colesanti ‘09
              Lauren Bloch
              Anouk Dey ‘09
              Emily Fowler-Cornfeld
              Claire Gallagher ‘09
              Craig Hand
              Maya Lama ‘09
              Elizabeth Kantack
              Morgan Phillips-Spotts
              Rebekkah Marrs
              Andana Steng ‘09
              Nichole McNeil
              Sophia Torres ‘09

That is:

    • The committee did
      not have: “thoughtful, written testimonials”
      from “more than three quarters of all the students ever enrolled in
      the Program in response to the committee chair’s request. . .
      In fact, only 22 WNY students ever received requests
      for “written testimonials,” and these were students only from the
      first three semesters of the pilot program in fall 2005, fall 2006,
      and spring 2007.

    • According to
      review committee’s own report (see above),
      Professor Waters interviewed
      only two students from the fall 2007 semester and these interviews
      came before they experienced the program.

    • Thus, the entire
      third year of the pilot program – a full 40 percent of the program
      to date (two of five semesters)– remains unevaluated,
      except for
      SCS scores, brief pre-participation interviews conducted by the associate
      dean of faculty and the director of experiential education, and the
      two interviews conducted by the chairman of the review committee. It
      is particularly difficult to understand why the eight students from
      fall 2007, all of whom have been on campus for all of spring 2008, were
      not interviewed.

    • Moreover, from
      the perspectives of students participating in
      the fall 2005, fall 2006, and spring 2007 WNY
      , the interviews conducted by the associate
      dean of faculty and the director of experiential education focused almost
      entirely on housekeeping issues (issues about running an educational
      program in a working hotel) and students’ adjustment to New York City
      and not on students’ views of
      the educational value of the WNY program.

In addition:

    • The committee
      did not interview the non-Williams
      adjunct professors
      in the program, some of whom the report criticizes
      sharply, to get their perspectives on their courses, their successes,
      and their failings

    • The committee
      did not interview or solicit materials from
      any of the organizational partners
      in New York City who are enthusiastic
      participants in the program and sponsors of our students’ fieldwork

    • The committee
      did not interview or solicit materials from any of the alumni and alumnae
      who participated actively
      in the program. See Appendix 2
      for the list of these alumni and alumnae.

    All of these materials
    are important for any rational decision by the Williams faculty about
    the quality and feasibility of the Williams in New York program.

    The review committee
    misstates the costs of the WNY program to date.

  • The committee
    conflates anticipated tuition costs to NYU
    in 2008-2009 with costs
    sustained in all five semesters of the program to date. The affiliation
    with NYU begins only in fall 2008.

  • The committee
    does not provide sufficient comparative data to allow faculty to assess
    the relative cost of the WNY program
    with the Williams programs
    at Oxford or Mystic. Nor does it provide a comparative estimate of the
    relative cost of the WNY program with the subsidies per student provided
    by the College to cover the difference between full tuition and the
    “real cost” of a Williams education.

    Most importantly,
    the review committee underestimates the talents, creativity, and ingenuity
    of Williams faculty members to sustain the Williams in New York program
    in the future.

    Fieldwork is a singular
    way for Williams students to integrate liberal-arts learning with work
    in the world
    . Beyond the committee’s narrow construction
    of the program’s signature emphasis on fieldwork by identifying it
    solely with sociology, fieldwork is in fact a primary methodology throughout
    the tripartite division of the Williams curriculum. The committee does
    not take into account the extraordinary range of fieldwork possibilities
    that Williams faculty members from different disciplines could bring
    to the WNY program. For example, one need only reference:

      Art History

      E.J. Johnson Fieldwork Studying Architecture
      in Renaissance Italy


      J. Pasachoff: Field Trips to Study
      Astrological Events


      H. Art – Ecological Fieldwork in Hopkins

    J. Edwards + D. Smith – Fieldwork on Isle of Royale

      Political Science

      M. MacDonald: Fieldwork in South Africa,
      Northern Ireland, and Israel

      Ngoni Munemo: Fieldwork in Botswana
      and Zimbabwe


      Kenda Mutongi: Fieldwork in Kenya


      B. Darrow: Fieldwork in Jordan, Egypt,
      Mongolia, and Tajikistan

    This is not to mention
    the College’s long and wonderful tradition in other kinds of fieldwork,
    to wit: Amos Eaton’s fieldwork in botany in 1817-1818 or the fantastic
    history of the Lyceum of Natural History, which took Williams students
    to the Bay of Fundy (1835), Newfoundland (1855), Florida (1857), Labrador
    and Greenland (1860), South America (1867), and Honduras (1871). One
    could also mention the 1986 WSP expedition to Amelia Island, Florida,
    where a band of 16 Williams students discovered and excavated the re-buried
    remains of 33 Native Americans.

    The task in creating
    the WNY program was to concretize the notion of experiential education
    in a thoroughly intellectual way.
    Thus, WNY explicitly
    eschews certain extant notions of experiential education,
    specifically: pre-vocational internships, service learning, and advocacy
    Fieldwork encourages Williams students to learn how to
    observe the world with their own eyes, ears, and disciplined sensibilities,
    and how to establish and internalize their own criteria for assessing
    the reliability and validity of what they observe, hear, and see.

Further notes on the
review committee’s report

  1. The review committee’s
    praise for the program
    The first part of the committee’s report praises the pilot WNY program
    for its implementation of the faculty’s May 2001 mandate to create
    a thoroughly intellectual experiential education program. The committee
    acknowledges that the WNY program also creates a venue to: overcome
    the College’s rural isolation; offer opportunities for our students
    to study in one of the most diverse cities in the world; and introduce
    students to the rich cultural life of a major metropolis. The committee
    also recognizes the enormous value of the Williams Club as a locus for
    the program, situated as it is in the very heart of Manhattan. The committee
    briefly characterizes WNY’s pedagogical goals. See
    Appendix 3 for the full statement of
    WNY’s pedagogical goals.

    2. On the issue of faculty to staff
    the program
    The report
    states “faculty interest in directing the Program appears not to be
    very high.” Exactly how many faculty members have expressed interest
    in directing the Williams in New York program?

  • The committee’s
    report provides no numbers in this regard. But it is important for the
    faculty to know not only how many but which faculty members and disciplines
    have expressed interest in directing the program. It is also important
    here to take into account the marginal and difficult circumstances under
    which the program has been operating to date. Were the program
    to be well established with the College’s full imprimatur, the number
    of faculty interested in directing it would undoubtedly increase.

    3. On the
    “lack of curricular coherence.”

    The WNY pilot program is the main component of the Williams faculty’s
    May 2001 institution of an experiential education component of the College’s
    curriculum. To this end, the various curricula of the program in each
    pilot semester have emphasized components of experiential teaching
    and learning
    . These include:

  • Fieldwork in mainstream
    institutions, accompanied by tutorials
  • Courses that take
    students to remote corners of the city where they meet a wide variety
    of men and women engaged in public affairs
  • Courses where students
    interview men and women of affairs in a seminar context
  • Courses that introduce
    students to the visual and performing arts
  • Courses that require
    students to create videos of aspects of city life

    Moreover, students’ first-hand
    experiences are systematically contextualized by their professors in
    wide-ranging historical and theoretical discussions, accompanied by
    intensive writing. It is worth commenting on the academic rigor
    of the WNY program. For example:

    Fall 2007 WNY Courses Course

in New York
15 hours of

  • 5 tutorial papers
  • 5 tutorial meetings
  • 3 group seminars to discuss
    fieldwork experiences
  • Social Worlds of
    New York
    • 3-hour Seminar/
      Week/12 weeks
    • 5 Course Papers

    All based on first-hand observations

    Arts & the City
    • 3-hour Seminar/Week/12
    • 7 Course Papers

    6 of them first-hand reports on cultural

    1 of them a term paper that
    synthesizes the experiences

    Craft & Consciousness
    • 3-hour Seminar/Week/12
    • 12 Papers

    11 1000-word, first-hand reports of students’
    conversations with/interviews of the 14 seminar guests

    1 5000-word paper addressing the problem
    of how craft shapes consciousness drawing on the previous eleven papers
    as data

      How does the review committee
      define curricular coherence” and evaluate its “lack”?
      What is the comparative frame of reference for this judgment
      Even more to the point, how did the
      committee reach its judgment about
      WNY’s lack of “curricular coherence” in the absence of
      post-factum interviews or “written testimonials” from more than
      42 percent of the students who have taken the program thus far?

      4. On the
      “uneven quality” of fieldwork placements.

      The committee argues that the fieldwork placements to date have been
      uneven, but, once again, the committee provides no detailed information
      to the faculty about the basis of its judgments about the relative worth
      of placements.

      It is the case that some
      fieldwork placements to date have been better than others. But
      the program has developed a roster of
      very successful placements.
      For example:

    Museum of Modern Art

  • Whitney Museum of American
  • Dodgers Theatrical
  • Production Resource Group
  • LAW,
    • District Attorney of New York
    • Office of the United States
      Attorney, Southern District of New York
    • Office of the Special Narcotics
      Prosecutor for the City of New York
    • Women’s Commission
      on Women and Children Refugees
    • ABC News Special Events
    • NBC Sports
    • New York Sun


    • Bellevue Hospital, Department
      of Psychiatry
    • Mount Sinai School of Medicine,
      Department of Community & Preventive Medicine
    • *New York Presbyterian
      Hospital at Columbia University, Department of Surgery

    *Scheduled for spring
    2009 under Dr. Craig Smith ’70, chairman of the department of surgery,
    an enthusiastic supporter of the WNY program

      Such placements can certainly
      be made in many other organizations in areas across the entire range
      of the Williams curriculum if
      the College commits to the WNY program and determines to make the program
      work. What is required is assiduous cultivation of contacts in
      appropriate organizations, education of those willing to sponsor our
      students in what we mean by fieldwork, and education of our own students
      about the importance of energetically assuming initiative in shaping
      their placements. It is important to note that such
      effort underpins any kind of experiential education program.

      the committee’s doubts about the feasibility of maintaining and continually
      renewing such a network of contacts because of revolving program directors
      can be addressed by the establishment of a board of advisors to the
      WNY program consisting of faculty, alumni and alumnae in the
      city, and already on-board organizational partners.
      This suggestion was made to the review committee, but its possibility
      is not discussed in the report.

      On adjunct faculty
      The committee states that some of the teaching done by adjuncts has
      been “very successful.” At the same time, it states that “the
      quality of some of the teaching by adjuncts has been sub-par.”
      In neither instance does
      the committee provide any specific information.

      In the five semesters of the pilot program thus far, the breakdown of
      adjunct teachers has been:

    Fall 2007 Professor of
    Film Studies, City College of New York and the Graduate Center, City
    University of New York

    Founder and Host of City Cinémathèque

    Williams College, Class of 1972

    Fall 2007

    Fall 2006

    Fall 2005

    Chairman, Dept of Sociology,
    Graduate Center, City University of New York

    Former President, Eastern Sociological

    Former Tenured Professor, Williams College

    Spring 2008

    Spring 2007

    Assoc. Curator of Contemporary
    Art, Whitney Museum

    Williams College, Class of 1995

    Tony Robins Spring 2008

    Spring 2007

    Urban Guide

    Former City Planner

    Williams College, Class of 1972



      Semester(s) in WNY

      Current Position and Link to Williams

      In addition, Williams Professor
      Jean-Bernard Bucky taught in the WNY program in fall 2005 and fall 2006
      and Williams Professor Liza Johnson ’92 taught in the spring 2007
      and spring 2008 semesters. Professor Bucky submitted a statement
      to the review committee, but he was never interviewed by the committee
      despite the enormously important role he played in fashioning the first
      two semesters of the pilot program.

      Everyone associated with WNY to
      date has had deep ties with Williams College. These colleagues all worked
      extremely hard to create truly experiential courses. But
      the committee did not interview any of the
      adjunct professors who participated in the program to obtain their input
      for the faculty’s consideration.

      [Nor did the committee note the range of men and women that students
      in some semesters met in the non-Williams adjunct professors’courses.
      For instance, in fall 2007, in Professor Kasinitz’s course, students
      met: Joseph Salvo, head of the Population Division of the City Planning
      Department; James Flateau, political campaign manager for Yvette Clarke
      who won a Congressional seat; and scholars such as Mitchell Dunier,
      Robert Smith, Joshua Freeman, and Margaret Chin. In Professor Carlson’s
      class, students met: Carmen Boullosa, the distinguished Mexican novelist
      and critic; Michael Davis, librettist and opera director; and Ana Sokoloff,
      arts consultant and former director of the Latin American division of

      Instead, the committee
      relied on the SCS as a means to evaluate WNY professors’ teaching
      of experiential courses. The SCS is
      an instrument designed to measure regular classroom interactions

      not courses explicitly designed to be experiential. The committee states
      that the SCS results were confirmed by written “testimony” of students,
      but, once again, it provides no specifics. What written testimony?
      From how many students? About which adjunct professors? What specifically
      were the students’ complaints?

      6. On student demand.
      WNY does need to have more than eight students a semester in order
      to increase the program’s social vitality. The committee has settled
      on sixteen students a semester as the desirable number, both to achieve
      differentiated student experiences and interests and to cut down on
      total costs per semester.

      This is a reasonable goal,
      but one best achieved in stages. Even a program of twelve students a
      semester will dramatically improve the group dynamics of the student
      cohort and lower costs. A move to fourteen and finally to sixteen students
      will further
      improve group dynamics and lower costs.

      The issue of demand for
      the program is crucial. But it is worth remembering that student demand
      for the Williams-in-Oxford Programme, established by the executive decision
      of President John W. Chandler, was low for several years until it achieved
      its solid reputation among Williams students. Even now, demand
      for the Oxford program fluctuates from year to year. For 2008-2009,
      for instance, there were only 36 applicants for the Oxford program.
      In its early years, Williams permitted students from our sister colleges
      to attend our Oxford program until requisite demand was achieved.
      Indeed, the demand for the Williams Mystic program has
      always been low and regularly depends on enrollment from our sister
      Given time and imaginative work, the WNY program can create
      the kind of program to which Williams students respond in considerable

      7. On cost.

      The committee presents hypothetical figures that suggest high
      subsidies for each student enrolled in the WNY program, amounts that
      decrease dramatically as the number of students in the program increases.
      In addition, please note that the committee has calculated into its
      estimate of operating costs the extremely high tuition fees to NYU for
      , a move that some faculty members in the WNY program vigorously
      opposed on intellectual, practical, and financial grounds, but one that
      was nonetheless approved by the administration. There were
      no such tuition fees to NYU for the first five semesters of the program.

      The committee also gives
      a brief comparison of WNY’s high costs with Oxford’s relatively
      low costs, at the same time acknowledging that the comparison is difficult
      to make because the maintenance and operation expenditures on the College’s
      facilities in Oxford are calculated differently. The
      faculty also needs to know how the cost of the WNY program per student
      compares with the cost of the Mystic program,
      the Williams tutorial program, and with the
      “real cost” of a Williams education itself.

    : Williams in New York Pilot Program

    List of students 2005-2008

    Semester of Participation
    Name and Year

      Fall 2005

      Kara Brothers ‘07

      Brandon Carter ‘07

      Lily Gray ‘07

      Andrew Lazarow ‘07

      Walden Maurissaint ‘07

      Krista Nylen ‘07

      Fall 2006

      Paige Boddie ‘08

      Mirza Delibegovic ‘08

      Lauren Estevez ‘08

      Louisa Hong ‘08

      Jessica Phillips ‘07

      Sarah Randle ‘08

      Benjamin Sykes ‘08

      Hannah Wong ‘08

      Spring 2007

      Deborah Bialis ‘09

      Karina Godoy ‘09

      Natalie Joffe ‘09

      Elizabeth Kohout ‘09

      Katherine Krieg ‘09

      Kaolin McEvoy ‘09

      Claire Murchinson ‘09

      Fall 2007

      Melissa Barton ‘09

      Nichole Beiner ‘09

      Lauren Bloch ‘09

      Emily Fowler-Cornfeld ‘09

      Craig Hand ‘09

      Elizabeth Kantack ‘09

      Rebekkah Marrs ‘09

      Nicole McNeil ‘09

      Spring 2008

      Sarah Cobb ‘09

      Caitlin Colesanti ‘09

      Anouk Dey ‘09

      Claire Gallagher ‘09

      Maya Lama ‘09

      Morgan Phillips-Spotts ‘09

      Andana Steng ‘09

      Sophia Torres ‘09

    : Alumni and Alumnae who have participated in the Williams
    in New York Pilot Program 2005-2008

    Robert Lipp ’60. Senior Advisor,
    J.P. Morgan Chase. Co-Chairman of The Williams Campaign and Chairman
    of the Executive Committee of the Williams College Board of Trustees

    Robert Margolis ’78. Independent

    Herbert A. Allen ’62. Financier

    John Kifner ’63. Senior Correspondent,
    New York Times

    Paul Lieberman ’72. Senior
    Correspondent, Los Angeles Times

    Marc Charney ’65. Editor,
    New York Times
    Week in Review

      Arthur Levitt ’52. Former
      Chairman of the American Stock Exchange, former chairman of the
      American Stock Exhange

      Peter Willmott ‘59. Former
      Chairman of the Executive Committee, Williams College Board of Trustees,
      current chairman of the Board of the Sterling and Francine Clark Art

    Paul Neely ’68. Current trustee
    of Williams College

      Laurel Blatchford ’94.
      Chief of Staff, NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development

    Tim Ross ’87. Research Director,
    Vera Institute

    Bethany McLean ’92. Journalist
    and author of The Smartest Guys in the Room

      Jerry Carlson’72. Professor
      Film Studies at the City College of New York and the Graduate Center,
      City University of New York. Founder and host of City Cinematheque.

      Glen Lowry ’76. Director
      of the Museum of Modern Art, current member of the Williams College
      Board of Trustees

      Stephen Harty ’73. Chief
      Executive Officer of Bartle Bogle Hegarty. Current member of the Williams
      College Board of Trustees

    Kimberly Kirkland ’83. Franklin
    Pierce Law School

    Duffy Graham ’83. Savitt
    & Bruce

    Adele Horne ’91. Independent

    Timothy Shaw ’89. Chef, French
    Culinary Institute

      Jack Wadsworth ’61. Morgan
      Stanley, San Francisco. Current member of the Williams College Board
      of Trustees

      Clayton Spencer ’77.
      Vice President for Policy, Harvard University. Current member of the
      Williams College Board of Trustees

    Stacy Cochran ’81. Independent

    Shane Tela ’07. Law student

    Ashley Kidd ’00. Graduate

    Hope Coolidge ’75. Current
    member of the Gaudino Fund Board

    Valentin von Armin ’03

    Christine Choi ‘90

    Mario Chiappetti ‘78

    Thomas Belden ‘76

    Barton Jones ’68. President
    of the Williams Club

    Harry Matthews ‘67

    Charles Sena ‘79

    Illunga Kalala ’05. Law student

    Abid Shah ‘02

    Briscoe Smith ‘60

    Jeffrey Urdang ’90

    Paul Francis ’05. Prep for

    Daniel Levy ‘92. Assistant
    United States Attorney, Southern District of New York

    Michael English ’95. Assistant
    United States Attorney, Southern District of New York

    Brendan McGuire ’98. Assistant
    United States Attorney, Southern District of New York

    Tracy Conn ’00. Assistant
    District Attorney, District Attorney of New York

    Anthony Robins ’72. Urban

    Shamim Momin ’95. Associate
    Curator, Whitney Museum of American Art

    Michael Needham ’04. Business
    school student

    Marissa C. M. Doran ’05.

    Dana K. Fassler ’06. International
    relations student at SAIS

    Nathan Winstanley ’04. Advertising

    Michelle Cuevas ’04.

    Ainsley O’Connell. ’06.
    Business consultant

    Winston Goodbody ’90. Entrepreneur

    Chinyere Okoronkwo ‘83

    Thomas Krens ’69, Director,
    Guggenheim Museum

    William Finn '74. Tony Award
    winning composer/lyricist

    Carolyn McCormick ’81. actress
    on television and Broadway

    A.R. Gurney ’52, noted playwright

    Stephen Wertimer ’77. producer
    and director of Law & Order

    : WNY. Program Statement of Pedagogical Goals

    Williams in New York
    is a one-semester experiential education program that integrates traditional
    liberal-arts scholarship with intensive fieldwork in mainstream institutions
    in New York City. The program has several pedagogical goals:

    • To teach students
      how to do the kind of first-hand fieldwork that, with variations, is
      a key methodology in disciplines ranging from art history and the classics,
      anthropology and sociology, to field biology and epidemiological medical
      research. In the metropolitan context of Williams in New York, this
      means developing highly refined observational skills; the ability to
      see both on-stage and backstage realities in big organizations; conversational
      and interviewing abilities essential to enter fully into the life of
      particular social milieux; the discipline to set aside personal beliefs,
      frameworks, and ideologies in order to grasp others’ worlds from their
      own standpoints; and the analytical command of field materials essential
      for grounded interpretive work.
    • To thrust students
      into several different occupational/professional worlds to give them
      comparative frameworks against which to gauge their primary fieldwork
      experiences and to enable them to see the intersection of social networks
      and institutional worlds in a great metropolis.
    • To require students
      to do extensive writing and public speaking about their field experiences
      as ways of helping them shape and internalize their own criteria for
      the discernment and appraisal of social realities.
    • To cultivate self-confident,
      critical habits of mind to enable students to live rich intellectual
      lives in the world of practical affairs.
    • To encourage students
      to discover and enjoy the extraordinary ethnic, racial, linguistic,
      religious, and community variety that characterizes New York City via
      explorations of the nooks and crannies of a great metropolis—from
      pool halls to Carnegie Hall; from Coney Island to Wall Street; from
      local Pentecostal churches, to synagogues, to Saint Patrick’s Cathedral,
      to Saint John the Divine Cathedral; from downtown dance clubs to uptown
      soirées at the Metropolitan Museum of Art; from immigrant communities
      in Chinatown to East Harlem and Washington Heights; from fashion shows
      to film festivals; from comedy clubs to poetry jams. And to foster ongoing
      dialogues among students about the significance of such kaleidoscopic
      social realities.
    • To introduce students
      to the worlds of the performing and visual arts, to the critical appreciation
      of culture high and low, and to the social and organizational worlds
      that produce and maintain the arts in the great metropolis.
    • To teach students
      the history of New York City, the quintessential world metropolis, the
      paradigm and embodiment of modernity’s achievements and problems.
    • To create an institutional
      forum in which alumni and alumnae of Williams College can become engaged
      in the ongoing intellectual life of the College; to foster an unbroken
      dialogue between generations of Williams men and women.

    Appendix 4:
    Letter from Professor Chris Waters to some participants in the WNY program

    I am writing to you in my capacity
    as chair of a faculty and staff committee at Williams that will, this
    coming academic year, look into the workings of the Williams in New
    York program. As you may know, the New York Program was established
    initially for a probationary period. This year my committee will consider
    the Program in all its various aspects and report to the faculty with
    recommendations as to the future next May. Faculty will then vote on
    those recommendations, determining the future of the Program.

    Obviously, one of the things we want to do is to solicit as much input
    from former Williams in New York students as possible. Hence this e-mail.
    We would be delighted if you could take the time to put your thoughts
    to paper and send them back to me. What did you enjoy most about your
    time in New York? What worked and what did not? What did you expect
    and were your expectations fulfilled? What role did the Director play
    and what role might he have played? How valuable were the placement(s)
    educationally? What were the facilities like? What recommendations might
    you like to see implemented to strengthen the Program? In short, how
    valuable was your time in New York and what is your overall assessment
    of the academic importance of the Program? These questions are quite
    open-ended and merely suggestive of some of the things we are interested
    in; obviously, anything else you would like to add would be welcome.

    Anything you write will be confidential, read only by me and the other
    members of the review committee (and submitted by me to the committee
    anonymously if that would make you feel more comfortable). You can write
    me a longer letter and send it to me as an attachment or simply send
    me your thoughts via e-mail. But your candid reflections on both the
    merits and problems of the Program as you experienced it would be very
    valuable to us as we begin our work.

    I am hoping to call the first meeting of the committee in mid-September
    and want to have a dossier of materials available to the committee members
    by then. Hence if you can share any thoughts you have with me by September
    5th I would very much appreciate it.

    For all former Williams in New York students who will be back at Williams
    this coming academic year we hope to follow up the written comments
    with individual or group interviews, so I certainly look forward to
    chatting with you more about your time in New York in the Fall.

    Meanwhile, I hope my request for some written comments is not too much
    of an inconvenience and that you might be able to spare a little time
    to share your thoughts with us. The very success of the Program in the
    future depends on an accurate assessment of it this year, and particularly
    of the experience of those students who have been part of

    All best wishes,
    Chris Waters

    Hans W. Gatzke '38 Professor
    of Modern European History

    Appendix 5:
    Statement from the 16 student participants in the fall 2007 and spring
    2008 semesters of the WNY program

    We were
    not interviewed about our WNY experiences by anyone on the WNY Review
    Committee AFTER our semesters ended, nor did we receive from anyone
    on the Committee any request for "written testimonials" about
    our experiences AFTER our semesters in the program

    E-signed by:

    Fall 2007

    Melissa Barton ‘09

    Nichole Beiner ‘09

    Lauren Bloch ‘09

    Emily Fowler-Cornfeld ‘09

    Craig Hand ‘09

    Elizabeth Kantack ‘09

    Rebekkah Marrs ‘09

    Nicole McNeil ‘09

    Spring 2008

    Sarah Cobb ‘09

    Caitlin Colesanti ‘09

    Anouk Dey ‘09

    Claire Gallagher ‘09

    Maya Lama ‘09

    Morgan Phillips-Spotts ‘09

    Andana Steng ‘09

    Sophia Torres ‘09

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