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Harvey Rosen to be First Master of Whitman College

— The construction of Whitman College at Princeton University has certainly been one of the most ambitious residential college architectural developments of the past year. In today’s issue of the Daily Princetonian, the university’s student newspaper, Jennifer Epstein reports that Princeton economics professor Harvey Rosen has been named Whitman College’s first master:

Rosen named master of Whitman

Having left President Bush’s Council of Economic Advisers in June, economics professor Harvey Rosen is preparing to take on a new role: master of Whitman College. Rosen, who will officially become master when the college opens in 2007, will spend the next two years developing plans for the University’s first four-year college.

“I am tremendously excited about taking on the leadership of Whitman College and helping make real the University’s aspirations for the four-year college system,” Rosen said Wednesday.

He declined to comment further before studying in greater depth the issues associated with Whitman and the college system in general.

As the faculty leader of the college, Rosen will be instrumental in creating culture, community and educational opportunities in the college.

Rosen will officially take charge on July 1, 2007, roughly two months before Whitman welcomes its first residents. Most of the staff for Whitman College will be hired in the year preceding the college’s opening, Vice President and Secretary Bob Durkee ’69 said in an interview earlier this month.

So far, Rosen’s involvement has included serving on the Sixth College Planning Committee in 2001 and the Four-Year College Program Planning Committee in 2002. The first committee established general ideas for a system with six colleges, while the second made suggestions about residential life and education in the colleges.

The new residential college system will replace the current five two-year colleges with three two-year colleges and three four-year colleges.

“We now realize that fully half of the undergraduate population at Princeton this fall—the classes of 2008 and 2009—will have the opportunity to join the four-year colleges if they wish,” Durkee said.

During the summer, groups of faculty and staff met to discuss ideas for the new residential college system. Members of the Sixth College Planning Committee, Four-Year College Program Planning Committee and Dining and Social Options Task Force participated in the discussion.

The chair of the Dining and Social Options Task Force, German professor Michael Jennings, will report his committee’s findings at the October meeting of the Council of the Princeton University Community (CPUC).

The committee’s plans include incorporating dining halls with unique personalities and menus, controlled by chefs who will treat the cafeterias as their personal restaurants.

The University and the eating clubs have yet to agree to hybrid meal plans which would allow students to eat some meals in college dining halls while still enjoying Princeton club life.

Strategies to foster a broad sense of community within the colleges have yet to be determined.

Dean of the College Nancy Weiss Malkiel, the founding master of Mathey College, and executive vice president Mark Burstein are coordinating the work that will allow the system to open in two years.

Rosen came to Princeton in 1974 after earning graduate degrees in economics from Harvard and an undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan. He was on leave from the University from 2003 until this fall, serving on President Bush’s Council of Economic Advisers from November 2003 to June 2005.

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