Dear CC Community,

It was rewarding to share updates on Project 2024 and to explore ways of connecting our actions with our aspirations with colleagues at Spring Conference 2023.
We took inspiration from John F. Kennedy’s directive to NASA in 1962 to “land on the moon by the end of the decade” to brainstorm motivating goals that connect what everyone does here to our institutional vision: to ignite our students’ passion and potential to create a more just world.
Ideas drawn from these and other conversations continue to shape the Project 2024 Steering Committee’s thinking as we turn what we heard in Year 1 into concrete proposals for doing what we do better.
The work of the committee and of many other students, faculty, and staff who participated in follow-up discussions and in working groups this fall is critical to the success of this multi-year visioning project.
Doré Young ’23, student body president and steering committee member, shares what she has found rewarding and challenging about participating in Project 2024 and how this process is making an impact.
Here’s what else has been underway since my last update in November.
We have wrapped up Phase Three – Consolidating Ideas. Throughout Blocks 4 and 5, members of the steering committee narrowed the sets of possibilities advanced by the eight working groups into options to investigate further.
In addition, four exploratory groups have been evaluating these primary challenges:
1. The Financial Model/Access
Exploring higher education’s financial model and its longer-term effects on the college.
2. Demographics/Access
Better understanding the potential impact of demographics or the “birth dearth,” a sharp decline in the number of college-age students beginning in 2026. 
3. Digital Knowledge - online learning
Thinking about the role of digital learning in a residential college and in the context of the Block Plan.
4. Digital Knowledge - screen time
Exploring the effects of screen time and social media use on cognitive function and student learning and wellbeing.
Responding to what we heard last year about time and connection, this fall we also asked offices and divisions to identify efficiencies and to think about how to enhance collaboration with other offices. These discussions point to both small and larger ways to improve how we do things. 
We now move into Phase Four – Vetting and Assessing Options.
The working proposals support the overarching theme of last year’s conversations: Connections.
They fall into two main categories:
1. Reinforce Liberal Learning
2. Value Our People
In this phase, we’re creating action groups to assess the feasibility of the working proposals. Can we do this? If we can, then we’ll consult broadly on details and process. How do we do this? Answering these questions leads to the next phase: deciding whether the college should enact the initiatives.
Please check our website for ongoing updates. You’ll hear from other members of our steering committee about their experiences before the end of the academic year.
Thank you for contributing to this work.

Susan A. Ashley

Professor of History and Project 2024 Coordinator
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