The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded a $50,000 grant to Albion College to review and revise the board of trustees governance structure, as well as to support faculty and staff development through implementing "best practices" adopted by the nation's leading liberal arts colleges.

"We are grateful to the Mellon Foundation for recognizing the need for support of these two vital areas," said Albion President Donna Randall. "These initiatives, while seemingly disparate, are two key areas that need to be strengthened to support the strategic planning process that Albion College has begun."

Randall said the Mellon Foundation grant will allow the College to launch an intensive review and implementation of best practices, an important step given national trends and changes in the regulatory environment that impact the roles and responsibilities of governing boards.

The faculty development component is equally important, Randall said.

"Colleges like Albion have experienced shifts in culture as faculty today are increasingly engaged in active scholarship, often in collaboration with their students," Randall said. "We need to provide appropriate structures and resources to encourage faculty members to pursue outside funding that supports their scholarly development and undergraduate education."

Both projects will involve examining current practices in these areas with a goal of recommending new policies and procedures that will promote and support growth into the future, according to Randall.

"We are excited about the possibility of enhanced support for faculty who pursue external funding," said David Seely, professor and chair of physics. "We recognize, also, that we have to be careful in how we do this because faculty in different disciplines have diverse needs that likely are not well served by a one-size-fits-all model of support."