Academic Citizenship

graulty johnJohn Graulty, Cabrillo College
Chair, Academic Citizenship Committee

Embracing the notion that responsible academic citizenship demands engaged, collegial, civil, collaborative participation in the full life of the college/conservatory/university, an awareness of the institution's strategic goals and active contribution to their achievement, and a willingness to integrate meaningfully the demands of our discipline with the needs and expectations of our students and of the civic community, the CMS Academic Citizenship Committee contributed much to the Society's 2012 focus on advocacy and engagement.

Academic Citizenship Committee Accomplishments in 2012

  • Contributed submissions for the May, September, and November issues of the CMS Report to Members
  • Committee Chair John Graulty participated in the first-ever CMS Webinar on Advocacy, November 9, 2012
  • Hosted an Open Forum at the 2012 CMS National Conference in San Diego with members of the Committees on Academic Leadership and Administration, and Community Engagement entitled: Advocate! Exploring Creative Strategies for Connecting with a Broader Constituency through More Engaged Citizenship. Accepting that broader engagement is one of the key elements in better advocating for the importance of music units on our campuses, members of the Academic Citizenship Committee, joined by Suzanne Burton, Chair of the Community Engagement Committee, and David Myers, past Trotter lecturer and member of the Academic Leadership and Administration Committee, led a robust dialog with 26 participants including many CMS student members on the following three prompts:
    • How to engage new audiences in the 18 to 35 year-old cohort through radically re-invented live arts experiences that rely on innovative, even experimental, delivery practices, ones that are more audience-centric than artist-centric
    • How, through more engaged academic citizenship at the student and faculty level, can transdisciplinary collaborations within music units and beyond use cross-genre approaches, new participatory experiences, digital and social media components, non-traditional venues and contexts, new technology, and other strategies with the objective of better understanding and engaging the large cohort of non-arts students on campuses
    • How to encourage music faculty and students to take a more experimental, entrepreneurial approach to reaching new audiences, thus cultivating their own future audiences, while building support for what they contribute to improving the human condition

Academic Citizenship Committee Plans for 2013

  • Supporting the CMS 2013 theme of "inclusivity and invention," the Academic Citizenship Committee has submitted a proposal to host a forum at the 2013 CMS Conference in Cambridge, MA, entitled Building Inclusivity in the Exclusive Academy: The intense focus placed on disciplinary depth and expertise drives many of the fundamental aspects of academic life, from hiring, evaluation, promotion, and tenure decisions, to decisions about which research and creative work is rewarded and funded. The fierce competition for scholarly and artistic recognition and validation often cultivates exclusivity rather than inclusivity, isolation rather than collaboration, and dynamic power struggles that pit young, non-tenured faculty against tenured veterans, or department against department. In a higher education system that is further stressed by unprecedented budget challenges, increased competition for ever shrinking resources often erupts into outright academic bullying and other destructive behaviors akin to academics "eating their own." In a world that desperately needs artists and scholars in the academy to communicate, collaborate, connect and empathize with students, faculty, and others across campus and beyond for greatest public good, what can we as productive and collegial academic citizens do to encourage collaboration, connection, and inclusivity in the largely exclusive world of academia? This forum, led by members of the CMS Academic Citizenship Committee, will explore ways in which the academy might formally and informally promote greater inclusivity for the good of the academy and the society it serves.
  • Agreed to support several of the CMS Strategic Plan "Quick Starts" for 2012-2013. Academic Citizenship Committee Chair John Graulty, Member at Large Board representative David Myers, and Cultural Inclusion Committee Chair George Torres have begun initial discussions addressing "Quick Start #5": the development of a programmatic emphasis within the Society to enhance awareness of underrepresented racial and LGBTQ2 populations through scholarship and professional activities. The Academic Citizenship Committee's work in this area is a natural outgrowth of its recent emphasis on improving engagement and inclusivity through more robust and engaged academic citizenship.
  • One of the goals of the committee in the coming year is to engage a new graduate student member, someone who is able to contribute a pre-career student lens to the work of the committee. Committee member Hal Abeles has recommended a good possible addition, a student who is engaged in one of his doctoral cohorts at Columbia University-Teachers College and is also a faculty member at a small liberal arts college. An invitation will be extended, soon.

I thank my colleagues on the Academic Citizenship Committee for their invaluable and collegial contributions over the past year. It was also a pleasure to have members of the Committee on Academic Leadership and Administration and Community Engagement join us for our presentation at the San Diego Conference.