An open letter
April 24, 2012

Dear NSCAD faculty, staff, students and alumni,

The Board of Governors appreciates your attendance at the Town Hall meeting which took place Monday, April 23 in the Bell Auditorium. The discussion was not easy, but neither was the task placed before us by the Windsor Report.

That task was to put the university on a path to sustainability in five years’ time. Through much time and effort, the Board of Governors was able to present a framework to the provincial government by the March 31st deadline imposed by the Windsor Report.

Like everyone in the room, members of the Board of Governors have NSCAD’s best interests at heart. But we could not shirk from the challenge we faced. When dealing with a $2.4 million deficit—approximately 11 per cent of the total budget—we are well aware that measures won’t come without pain. Our attempt was to distribute that pain—share the sacrifice if you will—by looking at all aspects of our operations. Not to do so would put NSCAD’s autonomy and independence at risk.

The Board of Governors regards the Framework for Sustainability as the beginning of a conversation between NSCAD and the province. We’ve started the discussion and are waiting for tangible feedback. The Board is ready to meet with Marilyn More, Minister of Labour and Advanced Education, and her colleagues in the department. Just as the province requested urgency of us, we too are eager to move quickly and put uncertainty behind us.

Through this process, we have attempted to be as open as we can. Many people came forward in good faith and with sound, workable suggestions during consultation sessions in January and February. Updates of progress were posted on the NSCAD website. The Framework for Sustainability is available for anyone to read and was made public within a week of submission to the government.

The process wasn’t perfect, but important strides have been made. The Board of Governors asks you to work with us. We are listening and we want to hear your ideas. There is no ‘them’ and ‘us’—we are all in this together, devoted to the continued future of the leading visual arts university in Canada.

Yours truly,

Grant Machum,
Vice Chair,
on behalf of the Board of Governors
NSCAD University