is the second of two messages preparing for Coalition on Intercollegiate
Athletics (COIA) initiatives this Fall. Our
earlier message focused on our October 9-11 conference opportunity, and alerted
you to the encouragement your university president has received to sponsor
participation. This message
requests that you join with us to strengthen the basis of the Coalition.
COIA was formed in 2002-03 on an ad hoc basis as a network of faculty leaders
who expressed some degree of interest in at least email involvement.
This informal beginning led to quick accomplishments, well beyond our
initial expectations. To sustain
that momentum, our goals for 2003-04 include formalizing the basis of the
Coalition, so that we can more fully and effectively represent faculty
perspectives in working with university presidents, trustees, and the NCAA.
year, some schools very reasonably limited their involvement until the
Coalition's goals were fully articulated. This
is why the Coalition Steering Committee focused on drafting the "Framework
for Comprehensive Athletics Reform," which was posted on our website in
Response to that document has been positive, and we thank those of you
who have conveyed comments on it. The
Steering Committee has made revisions accordingly, and incorporated changes in
the text posted on our site.
now request that you ask your senates to consider the Framework document for
formal endorsement. As the document
itself indicates, we are well aware that no single statement as detailed as the
Framework will be supported by all faculty senates in all particulars - what we
request is a general endorsement and a decision by faculty leaderships to
participate in the Coalition and help us make it an effective means of engaging
faculty in national reform of intercollegiate athletics.
faculty leaders have already asked what type of resolution is necessary for
support of the Coalition. That is
entirely up to individual senates. Some
may wish to note that senate endorsement does not necessarily apply to every
specific point in the Framework. Any message we receive that conveys an
endorsement of the general Coalition approach and approves active faculty
leadership participation in the Coalition will suffice.
We have no fixed timetable, but hope that senates will consider
addressing this issue during the Fall term.
a century, attempts to eliminate serious problems and ensure that college sports
play a truly positive role have ended in half measures and deeper problems.
The absence of an engaged national faculty voice has been a critical
weakness. Our Coalition, based in faculty governance leaderships, has
for the first time brought faculty, presidents, and
to the table together, and the Framework document has grown out of dialogue with
these groups. Obstacles to
comprehensive reform remain high, but the means to overcome them now exist if we
can provide the long missing link of sustained faculty engagement.
As past presidents of faculty senates on our campuses, we understand that
it may be difficult to budget valuable faculty senate time to an initiative that
is national, rather than campus-based. We
hope that the importance of the issue and the progress the COIA has made so far
will convince you and your senate that the investment of time and effort is
University of Oregon
Coalition on Intercollegiate Athletics