Board of Trustees to discuss housing changes, fossil fuel divestment


BRANDON ARCARI/The Vermont Cynic The Board of Trustees meets Feb. 2, 2017.

Emma Jarnagin and Alex Verret

The UVM board of trustees will meet Friday Oct. 20 and Saturday Oct. 21 for its quarterly meeting.

Topics including diversity, tuition increases, updates and new uses for residence halls will be discussed, according to the trustees board book.

Tom Gustafson, Vice President for University Relations and Administration, said there will be some changes to student housing next year.

Students will continue to live in Jeanne Mance next year, however, the Board of Trustees has not reached a decision on whether to make it a more specialized type of housing, Gustafson said.

439 College Street, which was originally constructed for the fraternity Phi Delta Theta according to the University’s website, will be renovated either next summer or the summer after that, Gustafson said.

Gustafson also believes “some international students live there, but it is not limited to them.” There is no formal program at 439 College Street just for international students, he said.   

If the renovation takes longer than the summer, students will not be able to live there for an academic year.

Myself and the Board of Trustees is “still very much in the planning stages and have not made any definite plans as to when renovation of 439 College Street will take place,” Gustafson said.

Also on the agenda is a proposal to the Committee on Educational Policy and Institutional Resources for the Residential Life FY 2018 Deferred Maintenance Project, otherwise referred to as McAuley Hall, which is estimated to cost three million dollars, according to the board book.

The board book states that this project “will replace the exterior aluminum curtain wall system of McAuley Hall on the Trinity Campus.”

The approval of tuition increases of $406 and $906 for in-state and out-of-state students, respectively, will also be discussed.

The board will also address diversity at UVM, according to the board book.  

The University will “take risks and be different at particular times in order to move the needle in the area of diversity and inclusion,” the book stated.  

The Student Government association will present a call for complete University divestment from fossil fuels. SGA previously attempted this in 2013, but the divestment did not pass, according to a Dec. 2013 Burlington Free Press article.