October 4, 2006

An Excellent Point

"Credit D-GALA":
Timothy Dreisbach '71's recent letter asserts, without any factual basis, that the recent upward trend in donor participation is somehow related to the election of petition trustees ("Petition Candidates and Alumni Participation," Sept. 28). This is mere speculation (if not wishful thinking).

In fact, a significant increase in alumni participation can be directly attributed to the hard work of the college's affiliated groups. D-GALA (Dartmouth's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Alumni/ae Association), for instance, has increased its participation rate from 26.7 percent in 2002 to 43.7 percent in 2006 -- 17 full percentage points --- through greater communication with alumni, regional events, and fundraising initiatives. (This year alone, contributions from D-GALA members funded scholarships for four students.) Likewise, the other affiliated groups have also increased their participation rates over the past few years through similar outreach. Petition candidates and trustees do not deserve credit for these achievements.

The affiliated groups are a valuable financial resource for the College, as these increased participation rates demonstrate. A "yes" vote on the proposed constitution will provide the affiliated groups with the representation they warrant and ensure that this upward trend continues into the future.
Having voting positions on the Alumni Council for affiliated groups is not 'being nice' or compensatory—they are a necessary part of a vigorously active alumni body. To take their votes away (they do have votes now under the current system, something most critics won't tell you) would be hamstringing the effort to increase alumni participation. That would simply be silly.


  1. Anonymous3:47 PM

    Few people are advocating taking away the vote of affiliated groups. However, many find the two votes allocated to these groups to be dispropotionate to their membership. An affiliated group, with a minimum membership of 50 people, could have twice as much representation than a much larger group: say the Tuck School of Business (many thousand active members).

    Nobody has explained why affliated groups required two votes.

  2. Another way to make that point is this:

    No one has explained why groups such as Tuck do not have more votes.

    The primary issue is that Tuck and its like are not well-represented, and that would hold true if Affiliated Groups had no votes at all or if every single member of all AGs had an individual vote.

    This isn't a zero-sum game--we don't have to take AG votes away to give them to Tuck.

  3. Anonymous7:38 AM

    I may be wrong - but I believe that the affliliated groups are the only groups that are afforded the extra vote. Classes, graduate schools, etc all have a single vote. So, yes, I do think it needs to be explained what affiliated groups are given an extra vote.

  4. Anonymous1:03 PM

    Comparing the current system to the one proposed, it looks like classes will double their number of representatives. Right now, there is one rep for every TWO classes. In the new system, there will be one rep for EVERY class.