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come into the Blair School from the Nashville community, really every month and the staff are our primary link to those people.  I will say too that the staff are our primary link in problem solving.  I can guarantee you that in our pre-college program there is no shortage of proud parents out there who are convinced that their eight year old is the next Van Cliburne.  These people are not always the easiest to deal with. They have certain preconceived views of the world and how the Blair School should be serving their child.  It is a staff member who primarily deals with them.  We take great pride in the people skills and the great common sense and the great diplomacy that our staff members have.  I mention this because I say our function is vis-à-vis the community little bit different from the other schools and colleges.

Now the staff survey as I said, was complementary to something we started some years before.  When I cam here in 1993, we had 11 full time staff members to serve then a collegiate music major population of about 100, instead of 180 and pre-college enrollment of about 400 instead of 600.  In the ensuing 10 years, the pre-college enrollment grew by 50% and the collegiate enrollment grew by 80%.  We added just one full time staff member.  It went from 11 to 12 in that time.  The pressure on the staff members increased significantly.  You know a great deal of higher education like any bureaucracy can be a matter as you add staff, as you add students, it can be a matter of accretion without any careful thought given to function.  You just add something and it ends up like mineral deposits that grow without a specific shape or form and have lost their original function.  A couple of years ago we started with the staff rethinking.  With the help of a consultant, a facilitator, who joined us for several meetings, we rethought how we did business. We changed some job descriptions.  We tried to do things more efficiently -- more in a common sense manner and above all, we tried to use the creativity, the very considerable creativity that our staff members had in approaching this.  In other words, we had the staff members redefine their own world.   This was a wonderful exercise.  It was an eye-opening exercise.  And a liberating exercise for all of us including myself.

The Staff Survey I would say helped us in that process by pointing out certain needs we still had in communication and also in career development.  Again in higher education, as in many bureaucracies, there is an unfortunate tendency for people to be pigeon holed.  I did not want staff members to feel that they were stuck in a certain kind of position, with a certain kind of job description for eternity.  I wanted staff members to know they could exercise their talents, and we could give them some flexibility to exercise their creativity.  I think we have done that.  The Staff Survey was helpful with that.  Sometimes it was difficult to get through some of the statistical analyses.  I know that some people have some reservations about those.  We did too.  I must say that the Staff Survey was very helpful to us in helping us to further develop and complete a process that we had began a couple of years before.  

John Brassil:  Are you hiring?

Up next is a man who probably needs no introduction.  Dean Richard McCarty is the Dean of the College of Arts and Science.   It is the largest single college at Vanderbilt University. Also Dean McCarty is a Johns Hopkins graduate.  He came to Vanderbilt in 2001 as Professor of Psychology and Dean of the College of Arts and Science with a secondary appointment as Professor of Pharmacology in the School of Medicine.   And really he is just about literally and figuratively at the center of what goes on at Vanderbilt.   I am not quite sure the undergraduate enrollment or graduate enrollment in the College of Arts and Sciences,  but I know A & S has the  lion-share in terms of the number of bodies ; so Dean McCarty you really have a lot of staff

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