October 31, 2022

L&C Board of Trustees October Meeting Highlights

The Board of Trustees held its annual fall meeting on campus on October 19 and 20, immediately prior to the inauguration of President Robin Holmes-Sullivan.

Highlights include:

  • The Board approved a $2.5 million capital project to make much needed improvements at the law school. This funding will allow for the remodeling of Classrooms 5 and 6, with Classroom 5 transformed into the law school’s first multi-purpose trial and appellate courtroom. The project will also include remodeling and updating student spaces in Wood Hall and Boley Law Library, as well remodeling and reconfiguring other spaces to better serve the law school’s growing programs and clinics.
  • The Board authorized the law school to offer a new Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD) degree in Animal Law. The SJD is the equivalent of a PhD in law and is the highest academic degree obtainable at U.S. law schools. With an LLM as the required prerequisite, the SJD is for candidates with a substantive knowledge of the field who wish to enter into academia, think tanks, policy-setting organizations, and similar areas. This will be the first Animal Law SJD in the country, following on the heels of Lewis & Clark’s “first in the country” Masters of Studies in Law (MSL) degree in Animal Law.
  • The Board amended the investment policy governing the College’s endowment to further integrate environmental, social, and governance (ESG) principles into investment management. This is an area of significant development since 2017, when the College first adopted an ESG policy focused on fossil fuel divestment. The new investment policy moves the College towards net zero, which is the objective of having a society that no longer contributes additional greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere by 2050 (with significant reductions in the next decade). The policy commits the College to reduce emissions in the portfolio by 50% by 2030, and 100% by 2040. The 2040 date is more aggressive than the emerging standard (2050), but is in line with our role as a leader in sustainability. The policy also commits to investing at least 5% of the portfolio in climate solutions, which are investments that have the reduction or removal of greenhouse gas emissions as a core part of their strategy.
  • The Board approved increased project budgets for the renovations of Stewart and Odell residence halls and Huston Sports Complex. These budgets required increased funding due to new cost estimates that are higher than originally expected.
  • The Board approved College of Arts and Sciences tuition and fees for 2023-24. Tuition will increase 4.5%; residence hall fees will increase 4%; and board fees will increase 5%. (Tuition and fees at the law school and graduate school are approved in February.)
  • The Board recognized the many years of service of life trustees Gerry Nordberg, Jr. and Dick Keller, who each passed away earlier this year.

The Board’s next meeting will be in February.