The records of the Office of the Provost chronicle the creation of this senior administrative position in 1960 and the subsequent development of this Office over three decades. The numerous changes in duties and responsibilities and the subsequent alterations in reporting relationships are well documented. The uneven character of the departmental and office records is attributable to these frequent changes in responsibilities. Recent records reflect an increasing use of computer technologies to compile budgetary data and produce statistical studies and reports. Symptomatic of this reliance on computer systems is the use of electronic mail ("E-mail") messages to communicate internally and externally. The majority of the Provost's "E-mail" is not recorded on paper and is therefore unavailable to the researcher.
Documentation in the Provost's records includes incoming and outgoing correspondence (not maintained as a separate correspondence series, but rather integrated within the general filing system employed by the Provost's Office), reports, technical papers, budget print-outs, and other records received or created in the general administrative role of the Provost. The five subgroups correspond to the Provost's major areas of functional responsibility, and they take into account the general alphabetic filing system employed by the Office of the Provost. The folders used by the Provost were retained (about one-half of them are of the expandable "accordion" variety). The five subgroups are as follows: I. Administrative Units Reporting to the Provost; II. Budgetary and Fiscal Records; III. Governing Bodies and Committees; IV. Grants and Foundations Files; and V. Administrative Records (General).
Records in the first subgroup consist of files of administrative offices and units for which the Provost served as Division Head. The first nine series document offices that have at one time reported to or currently report to the Provost. Included are files from the Admissions Office, Allen Memorial Art Museum, College Archives, College Library, Computing Center, Financial Aid Office, Institutional Research Office, and the Registrar's Office. The final series contains records of units which did not directly report, but are related to the Provost's work as a whole (e.g., Dean of Students, Office of the Secretary). These records further document the ever-changing reporting relationships resulting from the periodic administrative reorganizations.
The documentation on the administrative units reporting to the Provost offers a means of comparing and contrasting the operation of these units with one another in a divisional framework. Extensive documentation exists for the Admissions Office (1961-86), Office of Financial Aid (1965-90) and the College Library (1961-90). The Provost's documentation includes annual reports, personnel requests, correspondence and memoranda from directors, and budgetary information. As the chief budgetary officer, these records provide the basis for planning and preparing budgets. Thus these records are a natural extension of those found in the second subgroup, budgetary and fiscal records. Less well documented at this time are the activities of the Offices of the Controller and the Registrar.
Budget requests and supplemental requests from units reporting to the Provost comprise a large percentage of the budgetary documentation. Efforts to forecast the College budget within a financial equilibrium model are chronicled here as well. A computer printout of the 1985 budget offers insight into how the individual parts of the budgeting process are brought together as a whole. Salary figures and documentation on faculty support programs attest to ongoing efforts by the institution to maintain a diverse and productive faculty.
Owing to the Provost's ex officio membership in the General Faculty and all subordinate faculties and councils, the records of governing bodies and committees are extensive. The records series are arranged on the basis of the governing hierarchy, beginning with the Board of Trustees and ending with individual committees. These records underscore the Provost's wide-ranging responsibilities in both the College and Conservatory divisions. The Conservatory of Music records provide a source for comparing and contrasting the government of the College of Arts and Sciences division. Records of the faculties and councils, which include minutes and supporting documentation, dating primarily from the 1970s and 1980s, provide a rich complement to the records found in the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. Of particular note are the committee files relating to long range planning (LRPC), which contain a complete set of area reports (College of Arts and Sciences; Conservatory; Academic and Instructional Support; Student Support Services; Admissions and Financial Aid; Administration and Finance; and Plant Financing, Operation and Maintenance). The LRPC files, 1976-80, document the long range planning process, the decision-making process, the financial equilibrium model, and the goals and objectives of the College.
Files relating to the development of grants and the institution's work with foundations documents the College's recent reliance on external sources of funding for curricular and program innovations. Documentation includes completed grants and correspondence between the college and granting agencies (public and private). The bulk of the documentation pertains to applications submitted to the National Science Foundation (NSF). Specific programs include CAUSE (Comprehensive Assistance to Undergraduate Science Education) and COSIP (College Science Improvement Program). Records date from the 1960s through the 1980s. Included among the grants files are records of the SEOP (Special Educational Opportunities Program), which provided funds to elevate minority concerns, including the creation of the Asian American Coordinator position in 1972.
General administrative records (Subgroup V) represents documentation varied in nature and content. These records detail the administration of programs and academic departments within the Provost's wider oversight. The chronological file (1961-86) is a rich source for gaining insight into the routine, day-to-day operation of the Provost's Office. Likewise, the personnel records provide additional information on budgetary issues, many of which are better documented in subgroup II. Individual files received from other colleges were gathered to assess Oberlin's competitive position in relation to peer institutions. Records of professional associations and organizations also attest to Oberlin's interest to remain abreast of developments in academia.
Some of the most varied records are found in the subject file, the final series of Subgroup V. The subject file contains documentation on subject as diverse as the YMCA/YWCA and telecommunications. Arranged alphabetically, these files indicate the broad supervisory scope exercised by the Provost.
The records of the Office of the Provost are arranged in the following subgroups, series, and subseries:
Subgroup I. Files Relating to Administrative Offices/Departmental Units
Series 1. Admissions Office Records
Series 2. Allen Memorial Art Museum Records
Series 3. Archives Records
Series 4. College Library Records
Series 5. Computing Center Records
Series 6. Controller's Office Records
Series 7. Financial Aid Office Records
Series 8. Institutional Research Office Records
Series 9. Registrar's Office Records
Series 10. Other Administrative Units (not Directly Reporting
to the Provost)
Subgroup II. Files Relating to Budgetary and Fiscal Matters
Series 1. Budgetary Records
Series 2. Compensation Records
Series 3. Faculty Support Program Files
Subseries 1. Curriculum Fellowship Files
Subseries 2. Research Status Files
Subseries 3. Travel Grant Files
Series 4. Salary Records
Series 5. Tuition Records
Subgroup III. Files of Governing Bodies and Committees
Series 1. Board of Trustees Records
Series 2. President's Staff (President's Council) Records
Series 3. General Faculty Council (GFC) Records
Series 4. General Faculty Records
Series 5. College Faculty Council (CFC) Records
Series 6. College Faculty Records
Series 7. Conservatory of Music Faculty Council Records
Series 8. Conservatory of Music Faculty Records
Series 9. Committee Files (Arranged Alphabetically)
Subgroup IV. Files Relating to Grants and Foundations
Series 1. Grants Files
Series 2. Foundations Files
Subgroup V. Administrative Records of the Provost (General)
Series 1. Chronological File
Series 2. Academic Departments and Program Files
Subseries 1. College of Arts and Sciences
Subseries 2. Conservatory of Music
Series 3. Buildings and Grounds Records
Series 4. General File
Series 5. Personnel Records
Subseries 1. Name Files
Subseries 2. Personnel Evaluations
Subseries 3. Personnel Searches
Series 6. Other Colleges
Series 7. Professional Associations and Organizations
Series 8. Publications
Series 9. Subject Files
Series 10. Tuition Probe Records
SUBGROUP AND SERIES DESCRIPTIONS
Subgroup I. Files Relating to Administrative Offices/Departmental Units, 1960-95 (14.2 linear feet)
Subgroup I documents the Provost's responsibilities as a division head. The bulk of the documentation is centered on units reporting directly to the Provost. The last series in this subgroup, however, contains records of administrative units which did not directly report, but bear some relation to the Provost. A few administrative units which no longer report to the Provost but did at one time report are also filed here (e.g., Field magazine). The uneven character of the file units is owing more to administrative reorganizations occurring over time than to actual gaps in the records. The records series are alphabetically arranged. The Provost participated in personnel searches for many of the units reporting to him. These search files are segregated as part of subgroup V due to their confidential nature.
Series 1. Admissions Office Records, 1961-86 (1.2 l.f.)
This record series, which covers admissions activity, contains studies, annual reports, a chronological file and topical files alphabetically arranged. The chronological file consists of correspondence (incoming and outgoing), memoranda, reports and other documentation received from and sent to the Admission's Office.
Series 2. Allen Memorial Art Museum Records, 1961-86 (0.8 l.f.)
Consists of documentation pertaining to the Art Museum, particularly issues such as staffing and the status of curators. The chronological file contains documentation relating to topical reports and studies as well as the equipment needs of the program.
Series 3. Archivist, Office of the, Records, 1962-86 (0.4 l.f.)
Documentation relates to program guidelines, document preservation initiatives and efforts to secure outside funding for the College Archives. Administrative responsibility for the College Archivist was placed with the Secretary's Office from 1977 to 1986. Records are arranged chronologically.
Series 4. College Library Director's Office Records, 1961-90 (3.0 l.f.)
Records of the College Library document the main library as well as the branch libraries and audio-visual operations. Files include separate chronological files for the library and audio-visual facility in addition to topical files. Among the more substantial subjects covered are budgeting, planning for a new library to replace the Carnegie Library, and the development and implementation of an automated circulation system during the late 1970s and the 1980s.
Series 5. Computing Center Records, 1967-87 (2.4 l.f.)
The gap in the computer center chronological file (1981-84) is offset by the abundance of topical files which relate to issues of academic computing ranging from personal computers to mainframes. The organization and reorganization of this unit is reflected in the alphabetically arranged topical files as well.
Series 6. Controller's Office Records, 1970-89 (0.4 l.f.)
The bulk of the documentation consists of financial reports and summaries of operations. Undoubtedly the lack of documentation from this office is partially attributable to the computerized nature of the budgetary process and overlap with the records in subgroup II. Other records used are on microfiche and are not currently held by the Archives.
Series 7. Financial Aid Office Records, 1965-90 (1.2 l.f.)
Records of the Financial Aid Office primarily document the tenure of James White as Director. Records include a chronological file and topical file. The topical files relate to the Financial Aid Planning Group, loan programs and minority targeting. Topical files are arranged chronologically.
Series 8. Institutional Research Office Records, 1972-87 (0.8 l.f.)
A unit within the Office of the Provost between 1972 and 1991, the Institutional Research Office produced statistical studies relevant to admissions, financial aid, salaries and faculty promotion. The bulk of the documentation represents the tenure of David Davis-Van Atta and is arranged chronologically. Some special projects and reports produced by this Office can be found within committee files and subject files series.
Series 9. Registrar's Office Records, 1969-87 (0.4 l.f.)
Records of the Office of the Registrar consist solely of a chronological file which documents activities of the Registrar from 1969 to 1987.
Series 10. Other Administrative Units (not Directly Reporting to the Provost), 1960-95 (3.6 l.f.)
This series consists of files of administrative units which did not have a direct reporting relationship to the Provost. Include are files from the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Dean of Students, Associate Provost and Development Office. These files have been retained for their relevance to the Provost's overall institutional responsibilities. The records are arranged alphabetically by office or unit name.
Subgroup II. Files Relating to Budgetary and Fiscal Matters, 1961-87 (6.2 l.f.)
Records within this subgroup provide evidence of the Provost's role as chief budget officer of the College. Although the Provost handled budget matters prior to 1983, it was not until this date that the Provost was given particular responsibility for budgetary policy. The five series represent specific aspects of the budget, including planning, compensation, faculty support, salary and tuition. The five series, alphabetically arranged are: 1. Budgetary Records; 2. Compensation Records; 3. Faculty Support Programs; 4. Salary Records; and 5. Tuition Records.
Series 1. Budgetary Records, 1974-86 (1.0 l.f.)
Records primarily relate to budget planning in the mid-1980s. Included in the documentation is budget information solicited from other colleges and universities, departmental requests, forecasting documents, and financial equilibrium models. A 1985 budget (computer printout) offers evidence of the amount of detail and attention required in preparing a budget at a private liberal arts college.
Series 2. Compensation Records, 1962-87 (0.8 l.f.)
Compensation records consist of an alphabetical subject arrangement, which includes information on benefits, retirement, leave policies and other matters relating to the Oberlin College faculty. Other files included here, such as the Faculty Guide and faculty housing, provide context for the remaining records and an illustration of the extent of the benefits.
Series 3. Faculty Support Program Files, 1961-87 (3.0 l.f.)
Consisting of three subseries, this records series contains information on faculty support programs, including curriculum development fellowships, faculty teaching grants, travel grants and research status (e.g., McCandless Curriculum Enrichment Fund and H. H. Powers Travel Grant Fund). The files include faculty applications to the support programs containing a brief outline of the need for support. Files are chronologically arranged within subseries: Subseries 1. Curriculum Fellowship Files; 2. Research Status Files; and 3. Travel Grant Files.
Series 4. Salary Records, 1963-86 (1.0 l.f.)
Consisting primarily of salary lists, reports and surveys, this records series documents the salary budgeting process at Oberlin College. Names are removed from a few of the lists. Access is by permission of the Archivist.
Series 5. Tuition Records, 1961-86 (0.4 l.f.)
Files relating to tuition include documentation on costs, fees, tuition remission plans and student reactions to tuition increases.
Subgroup III. Files of Governing Bodies and Committees, 1959-94 (16.1 l.f.)
The Provost's senior status on the administrative chart results in the Office receiving numerous files relating to governing bodies and committees. By virtue of his Office, the Provost also holds membership in the General Faculty as well as all subordinate faculty bodies and councils. Included in these files organized in terms of hierarchy, are minutes, reports, and memorandum concerning the business of each committee or body. The nine series are: 1. Board of Trustees Records; 2. President's Staff (President's Council) Records; 3. General Faculty Council (GFC) Records; 4. General Faculty Records; 5. College Faculty Council (CFC) Records; 6. College Faculty Records; 7. Conservatory of Music Faculty Council Records; 8. Conservatory of Music Faculty Records; and 9. Committee Files (Arranged Alphabetically).
Series 1. Board of Trustees Records, 1974-94 (2.8 l.f.)
With the exception of Board of Trustee Investment Committee records, the majority of the documentation relates to meetings of the Board of Trustees attended by the Provost between 1983 and 1986. As chief budgetary officer, the Provost is responsible for reporting on the College budget and providing statistical analysis at Board meetings. Records are chronologically arranged by the meeting date.
Series 2. President's Staff (President's Council) Records, 1981-87 (0.8 l.f.)
Consists of the Provost's record of the business conducted by the President's Staff. Topics covered include personnel issues, enrollment projections, long range planning and objectives. Records consist of meeting agendas, memoranda, and other documentation brought before the President's Staff. Arranged chronologically by year.
Series 3. General Faculty Council (GFC) Records, 1979-87 (1.0 l.f.)
Includes minutes and working papers of the General Faculty Council. Minutes are chronologically arranged. Working papers include agendas, memorandum and supporting documentation.
Series 4. General Faculty Records, 1965-75, 1981-89 (0.8 l.f.)
Includes the files of the General Faculty Planning Committee (chaired by the Provost), lists of faculty members, and minutes of the main body. Records are arranged chronologically.
Series 5. College Faculty Council (CFC) Records, 1984-87 (1.5 l.f.)
Included in the working papers 1984 through 1987, are scattered minutes and miscellaneous supporting documents.
Series 6. College Faculty Records, 1981-91 (0.4 l.f.)
Consists of minutes and other supporting material chronologically arranged.
Series 7. Conservatory of Music Faculty Council Records, 1975-87 (0.4 l.f.)
Includes minutes, working papers, summaries of Council personnel actions, and Educational Policy Committee minutes. In addition to illustrating the Provost's broad supervisory role, the Conservatory records provide a source for comparing and contrasting the government of the two divisions.
Series 8. Conservatory of Music Faculty Records, 1960-86 (0.2 l.f.)
Consists solely of minutes of the Conservatory Faculty arranged chronologically from 1960 to 1986.
Series 9. Committee Files (Arranged Alphabetically), 1959-89 (8.2 l.f.)
This series is comprised of files of the numerous committees served on by the Provost. The files represent committees administered by each of the various faculty bodies and councils as well as ad hoc and special policy committees. Committee files are arranged alphabetically by committee name.
Subgroup IV. Files Relating to Grants and Foundations, 1960-87 (6.4 l.f.)
The records document the Provost's responsibilities in the area of seeking external means of financial support for the College through grants and appeals to foundations. Consists of two series: 1. Grants Files and 2. Foundations Files.
Series 1. Grants Files, 1968-87 (4.8 l.f.)
Consists of actual grant applications as well as information regarding the disbursement of grant monies and the granting institution itself. Records are alphabetically arranged by the name of the granting agency or office.
Series 2. Foundations Files, 1960-86 (1.6 l.f.)
Alphabetically arranged files of foundations, both public and private, which make available financial awards to higher education. Files include applications and proposals as well as documentation regarding the disbursement of foundation monies.
Subgroup V. Administrative Records of the Provost (General), 1958-95 (20.0 l.f.)
This subgroup, which is the most general of the five subgroups, encompasses many of the diverse functional and administrative duties of the Office of the Provost. The records cut across the spectrum of academics, from instruction to personnel and the physical plant. The nine series are organized as follows: 1. Chronological File; 2. Academic Departments and Programs Files; 3. Buildings and Grounds Records; 4. General File; 5. Personnel Records; 6. Other Colleges; 7. Professional Associations and Organizations; 8. Publications; and 9. Subject Files.
Series 1. Chronological File, 1961-86 (2.0 l.f.)
Files consist of six chronologically arranged "accordion folders," which deal with the everyday operation of the Office of the Provost. Although it is not a comprehensive file, documentation includes memoranda relating to budgetary matters, personnel decisions, the scheduling of meetings, travel plans, and equipment needs and purchases.
Series 2. Academic Departments and Program Files, 1960-89 (2.5 l.f.)
Consists of materials relating to the Provost's dealings with individual academic departments representing both the Arts and Sciences and Conservatory of Music divisions. Subject matter varies widely, but generally includes budgeting and staffing issues. Files are alphabetically arranged by department or program name in separate subseries for the two divisions: 1. College of Arts and Sciences, 2. Conservatory of Music.
Series 3. Buildings and Grounds Records, 1960-95 (2.5 l.f.)
Documentation concerns both renovation planning and the routine operation of the College's physical facilities. Information on specific uses, for example, is evident in the files of Asia House and Barrows. Records are alphabetically arranged.
Series 4. General File, 1962-89 (0.4 l.f.)
This partially complete file contains correspondence (incoming and outgoing) on a variety of general subject matters, ranging from the acquisition of computer equipment to student academic performance. The letters "D" through "O" and the letter "S" are present. The remaining files, presumably semi-active or active, are still filed in the Provost's Office. Correspondence of Ellsworth Carlson, Acting Provost and Provost, is included.
Series 5. Personnel Records, 1962-91 (3.0 l.f.)
Consisting of three subseries, this records series includes name files for employees supervised by the Provost as division head. The records, consisting of evaluations and personnel searches, are directly related to the documentation in subgroup II. Name files contain salary information in the form of appointment letters and correspondence between the individual and the Provost.
Series 6. Other Colleges, 1963-91 (0.8 l.f.)
This documentation received and solicited from other colleges and universities is comparative in nature. Materials deal with how issues of retention, enrollment and budgeting are handled at peer institutions, and are indicative of the institutional research character of the Office. Files are alphabetically arranged by institution name. Printed materials such as catalogs and bulletins have been eliminated from the files.
Series 7. Professional Associations and Organizations, 1958-87 (1.0 l.f.)
These files document Oberlin's involvement in the business of higher education over a thirty-year period. Documentation includes questionnaires, conference programs, and information on dues and expenditures. Files are alphabetically arranged.
Series 8. Publications, 1979-80, 1982-91 (0.4 l.f.)
Consists of publications produced under the auspices of the Office of the Provost. Included in the publications files are newsletters: "A Modest Proposal" and "A Modest Proposal...Update" which provide information on how faculty and staff may apply for academic grants and fellowships.
Series 9. Subject Files, 1958-88 (7.4 l.f.)
This is an alphabetical arrangement of diverse subjects and topics relating to the Provost and the College as a whole. File topics range from student organizations to licensing of nuclear material. Key subjects include documentation of the science conferences ("The Future of Science at Liberal Arts Colleges") and planning for the Lorain County Regional Airport.
Series 10. Tuition Probe Records, 1989 (0.4 l.f.)
Consists of affidavits, interrogatories and other documentation gathered during the Department of Justice inquiry into tuition price fixing. These records include testimony from Provost Carrier, President S. Frederick Starr and other top administrators. These files are CLOSED through January 4, 1994.