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Program Strengthening

  1. Read the information on the home page, especially the General Advice section. Then assess your own situation as realistically as possible. The SCS now also provides resources for establishing and improving undergraduate programs.
     
  2. If you do not have a cycle of regular Academic Program Review, request that your administration conduct one.

  1. Join all relevant organizations, regional, state and local. If you're not already a member, join the SCS and familiarize yourself with its resources.
     
  2. Establish contacts as widely as possible. These may range from Classics colleagues in major research departments (especially if they are close by) to local teachers (just call the schools -- public and private -- and ask for the Latin teacher). You should definitely know all the classicists in the near vicinity, especially if your institution is somewhat isolated.
     
  3. Attend meetings. The SCS's annual meeting has many useful program sessions. SCS maintains email listservs for liberal arts college / BA-granting department chairs and for other chairs. Most other organizations meet at least annually and generally include pedagogical and program-enhancing sessions.
     
  4. Seek out and get to know individuals in situations like yours. Many others have been in similar situations at similar institutions or are now facing similar problems or crises financial or otherwise. They can give advice and provide moral support, and they may also be able to offer ways of sharing resources or collaborating on projects, which can be especially helpful for small departments.

  1. Intra-program disagreements and even feuding are sometimes unavoidable, but every effort must be made to keep them internal, lest they undermine the program’s standing in the college or otherwise become useful to unfriendly administrators.

  1. Try to create and maintain a friendly, or at least non-adversarial relationship with administrators, however misguided, ill-informed, or inept they may be. Seek opportunities to inform them about Classics, never assuming that they are well informed, and helpfully correct mistaken attitudes and opinions. Try to frame your challenges and opportunities as being theirs as well, for indeed we’re all in this together. Classics should always present itself as the valuable resource that it is and always has been.

  1. To that end, CAS emphasizes the importance of every sort of data about classical and archaeological programs nationally, both for creating self-studies and preparing for external reviews, and for defending threatened programs when a crisis strikes. We urge every program to respond to requests for data from SCS and other national organizations whose advocacy of the humanities includes classical studies, and to let us know what sorts of data would be useful to add.

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