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Task Force on Student Social Events and Community Standards

October 31, 2018

Dear Friends,

Earlier this semester, I shared a report from the Ad Hoc Committee on Wellbeing, Belonging, and Social Life, which developed a series of recommendations that are guiding much of the work of the Dean’s Division and others this year.

At that time, I announced that I would establish a Task Force on Student Social Events and Community Standards. I’m grateful to the following members of our community for their willingness to serve on this task force:


Lisa Meeden, professor of computer science, co-chair

Aixa Pomales, director of support services, ITS, co-chair

David Singleton ’68, Board of Managers, co-chair

David Cohen, professor of astronomy

Alice Holland, director of health and wellness services

Emily Anne Nolte Jacobstein ’07, president of Alumni Council and ex officio member of the Board of Managers

Landry Kosmalski, head coach for men’s basketball

Arjun Madan ’21

Charlotte Pohl ’21

H. Vincent Poor, Board of Managers

Tomoko Sakomura, associate professor of art history and associate dean for academic affairs

Olivia Smith ’21

T. Shá Duncan Smith, associate dean of diversity, inclusion, and community development

James Terhune, interim dean of students


I have asked the task force to consult broadly throughout the community and to critically examine social life on campus—including Greek life and programming in campus social spaces. The task force will also examine information from student conduct and safety reports, alcohol and other drug reports, and information from the Title IX Office, among others as they develop recommendations for how we ensure that students have safe, healthy, and enriching social lives at Swarthmore.

The task force will communicate with the community about their work, including opportunities for engagement.

The members of the task force welcome your thoughts, questions, and concerns. Please feel free to contact them individually by email. (For Board members, please use

The questions before the task force are not simple, but I am confident they will approach their work with fairness and diligence, seeking to honor core values of equity and inclusion.

I hope to be able to share a summary of the task force’s final report by the end of this academic year.


Valerie Smith