The Centennial Committee has three primary functions:
- Draft an informational report to be included on the revised Senate website providing a brief outline of the Senate’s history from 1921 to the present. For this report the committee would:-Identify major events in Senate history
-Find in the Senate archives the text of the original constitution/bylaws and later versions
-Extend the list of former Senate Officers prior to 1966.This informational report would form the basis of a revised “Senate History” section on the Senate website. Also, it would be easy to set up a Penn State University Faculty Senate page on Wikipedia. This could serve as a useful repository for whatever we find in the next year.
- Identify key documents, photographs or other artifacts to display online, or put on display in the Senate Office. The Chair Roger Egolf mentioned that, if the committee can find sufficiently interesting original documents or artifacts, we might be able to set up a special collections for display. Additionally, the committee could try to find original Senate (or assembly before 1920) documents that we might display in the Senate Offices. Finally, if possible, the committee could find photos of the Senate in session, as well as portraits of some of the early Senate officers from the 1920s.
- Working with the Senate’s Committee on Committees and Rules, consider the merits of an addition to the standing rules, establishing a Senate historian. Perhaps serving a 3-year term, the Senate historian would have two roles. First, on an ongoing basis, the historian would explore the Senate archives identifying key figures, actions and events that highlight the Senate’s work since its inception. Each year, the historian could take on specific issues, like how the Senate reacted to the bombing of Pearl Harbor, any resolutions it passed responding to the Civil Rights movement, the story of how the faculty Senate Constitution was revised in the early 70s, the story of how the Senate reacted to the Sandusky scandal, etc. Additionally, the historian could identify early pioneers, like the first women and minorities to serve in major leadership posts in the Senate. Second, file an annual report with Senate Council providing information about the events of the past year. This would include brief biographies of the Senate leaders, photographs from the Senate meeting, and summaries of the events leading to any landmark legislation, like the creation of the FT faculty promotion rules.