ALUMNI RELATIONS 1985 Association of Alumni & Friends Minutes

Pine Mountain Settlement School
Alumni Relations 1985
Association of Alumni & Friends

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TAGS: Alumni relations, PMSS Association of Alumni & Friends, minutes and correspondence, Advisory Council, Dr. John Stephenson, Ruth Shuler Dieter, Jim and Carol Urquhart, student dropout rates, Intervention Program, Environmental Education, Upward Bound, James Greene, Elderhostel, summer heritage camps, community service programs, Advisory Council committees, fundraising

ALUMNI RELATIONS 1985 Association of Alumni & Friends
Minutes, April – November 1985

The following items include general correspondence of the Advisory Council as well as the minutes of the Council meetings that were sent to the Pine Mountain Settlement School Board of Trustees for their review.

The Spring of 1985 was a period of high productivity for the Board and the Advisory Council. Dr. John Stephenson, of Berea College, was the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, and Ruth Shuler Dieter, a former Pine Mountain Settlement School boarding student, was the Chairman of the Advisory Council. The Directorship of the School was shared by Jim and Carol Urquhart whose primary concerns were with the large dropout rate of students in the Northside valley. In fact, the figures pointing to that dropout rate can be seen in the 1980 census report that Ruth Shuler Dieter shared with the Board. That “42% of children ages 16-18 are not high school graduates and aren’t in school,” is startling.

Shuler’s report focused on the dropout problems in the community as well as pointing out the great success of the Environmental program that was begun in the early 1970s and represented one of the finest such programs in the state of Kentucky and the region. Other members of the Advisory Council, including Bill Best, Walter Oldendorf, and Tom Boyd from Berea, Marty Ingram, Clara Pope, and former students of PMSS, Jane Hobgood, David Martin, and George Tye, and others offered substantive suggestions that Pine Mountain might try to alleviate the high dropout rate among teenagers. The federal program called “Upward Bound” was mentioned by several Advisory members and it was suggested that the institution of a long-term residence may be useful in changing behaviors.

James Greene provided input regarding the Harlan City Schools programs and suggested a PMSS program that would place an emphasis on raising the self-esteem of students was needed throughout the county. Ultimately, the 5-page report of the Advisory Council presented a slate of programs they believed may be helpful in reducing the dropout rate and poor academic performance of large numbers of students in the county. The possible programs included:

  1. Environmental Education Program
  2. Dropout Program [later became the ‘Intervention Program‘]
  3. After-school tutoring and homework
  4. Elderhostel
  5. Summer heritage camps
  6. Upward Bound
  7. Community Service programs

All the suggested programs would meet the mission of the Settlement School as stated by Charles Creech, also a member of the Advisory Council.

On Saturday the suggested Advisory ideas were presented to the Board members and Walter Oldendorf’s film “Learning Through Life at Pine Mountain Settlement School,” was viewed. The Advisory Council members then toured the campus facilities and had an introduction to the use of each building, its condition, and the needed repairs. The tour was followed by recommended next steps and responsibilities as outlined by Dr. Stephenson on the suggestions and actions of the Advisory Committee.


April 1985 Minutes

[Note: The following list of contents is in chronological order and not necessarily in the order of the image numbers.]

008-010 April 20, 1985. Three pages of Advisory Council minutes. [008] The Board of Trustee members and Advisory Council members met at breakfast. The Council members watched Walter Oldendorf’s film, “Learning Through Life at Pine Mountain Settlement School,” and toured the campus facilities. At a meeting after lunch, Dr. John B. Stephenson advised them of their mission. According to the by-laws, the Advisory Council should report ideas/suggestions to Ruth Shuler Dieter so she can include the major ones in her Board report for the Trustees’ approval. Stating that “a new chapter in the life of Pine Mountain has begun,” she established the committee and their chairmen. Jim Urquhart talked about the Schools financial situation and occasional use of the endowment. Dieter appointed John Deaton as Vice-Chairman and Marty Ingram as Secretary. [009] The committees are listed along with the chairman, members, and missions: Fundraising, Publicity and Acquisition of Friends, school and Community Programs, Maintenance and Beautification of the Plant, [010] Personnel, Preservation of Pine Mountain Settlement School’s Heritage, Association of Alumni and Friends. Other items were discussed: next meeting, carpooling from the airports, renting Oldendorf’s film, bringing in guests.

011-012 N.D. “Committees,” a two-page list of the Advisory Council’s committees and their missions and goals.

002-007 April 19-20, 1985. Six pages of a report of the Advisory Council to the Board of Trustees, [002] which had met for the first time for orientation. The day included registration, a welcome from the Urquharts, a wildflower walk with Al Anderson, and supper. Afterward, an open discussion in Laurel House among Board Members and Advisory Council Members was led by Dr. John Stephenson, Chairman of the Board. Jim and Carol Urquhart again welcomed the members and gave an overview of PMSS’s present and possible future programs.

Jim [Urquhart] said that between 10,000 – 12,000 visitors come to the School throughout the year. Many of these visitors come back repeatedly for alumni meetings, weddings, retreats, community recreation, to use the library, and to attend the environmental program.

The Urquharts described a possible future program that would add more community programs, specifically one to combat the school “drop-out” problem. Tom Boyd presented a 40-page report on the local demographics based on the 1980 Census. Jim Urquhart outlined several programs for the plan. [003] As an example, Jim described the School’s success with the Environmental Education program. Bill Best asked for ideas, George Tye and Bill Dawn told about PMSS’s positive impact on their education. The proposal and other ideas were discussed by Marty Ingram, Carol Urquhart (told of GED classes at PMSS), Jane Hobgood, Jim Urquhart, [004] DUPLICATE OF 003. [005] Ellen Hayes, Bill Best, Walter Oldendorf, Al Anderson (told about the Upward Bound Program at PMSS), Dave Martin (asked about Elderhostel program at PMSS). [006] Jim Urquhart explained the source of financial support for the programs and the current state of PMSS’s financial situation. Johnnie Turner asked about the relationship between PMSS and Harlan. James Green talked about students in Harlan City Schools and how PMSS could help some of them, suggesting summer heritage workshops. [007] Carol Urquhart mentioned 4-H clubs and the “Earn and Learn” program at PMSS. 

The possible programs presented to the Board and the Advisory Council included: the present Environmental Program; the “drop-out” program; an after-school tutoring and homework program; Elderhostel; summer heritage camps; Upward Bound; and community service programs.

May 1985 Minutes

001 May 10, 1985. Letterhead: “Pine Mountain Association of Alumni & Friends”

Ellen Ayers Hayes, President
Carl Whitehead, Vice President
Betty B. Kelly, Secretary
August Angel, Treasurer
Ruth Shuler Dieter, Member at Large

Advisory Committee:
Jack Martin
Pat Hall Martin
Jane Bishop Hobgood
John Deaton
Paul Hayes

To Dr. John Stephenson, Jim and Carol Urquhart and Members of the Board of Trustees from Ruth Shuler Dieter. Dieter encloses April 19-20 minutes of the Advisory Council, written by Marty Ingram, secretary to the Advisory Council. ‘We hope these minutes will keep all of us ever mindful of our duties to Pine Mountain Settlement School…” Also enclosed is a list of the Advisory Council duties. 

August 1985 Minutes

016-017 August 10, 1985. Two pages of minutes of “Advisory Council of the Board of Trustees” meeting; list of attendees. Each committee head or representative reported on its work: Development, Publicity and Promotion, Programs, Maintenance and Beautification. Vivian Blevins, Director of Southeast Community College in Cumberland, spoke on educational programming. [017] The members discussed promoting Pine Mountain, West Wind needs, fundraising, and maintaining architectural integrity. 

Attachment: ”Section 11 — A report on the Development Workshop for August 12, 1985,” by Jane Bishop Hobgood. She lists the attendees of the all-day seminar on fundraising techniques and methods, led by Dr. Stephenson.

Attachment to August 1985 Minutes

018-022 August 12, 1985. Five-page “Report of the Development Workshop,” attachment to the August 10 Advisory Council minutes. [018] Dr. Stephenson stated that “a systematic effort in fund-raising must be embedded in a larger framework which involves the process of planning — the formulation of goals, objectives, program ideas, and the implementation of the means for achieving them.” Mr. Rod Bussy, head of Berea College Development, handed out materials to be used in the workshop. He stated that he would be using Berea’s successful development efforts as a model. He then instructed the attendees in the concepts and process of development. [019] Continuation of Mr. Bussy’s talk. [020] Bussy continues, instructing on the roles of the trustees, development staff, and volunteers in fundraising. He suggests and describes a possible Development Council. [021] Bussy summarizes “the major tasks that must be undertaken, including attention to the annual fund, endowment, special programs and projects, capital improvements, deferred giving, volunteers, prospective donors, and appropriate leadership. He recommended that PMSS hire a director of development, with focus on annual giving, capital projects, a major gifts campaign, and estate planning (deferred giving). The members gathered into smaller groups and discussed a handout on “Strategic Planning.” [022] Two major recommendations from the workshop: 

    • That Pine Mountain must formulate a carefully considered “Case Statement” upon which to base its search for new funds.
    • That a planned development program must be initiated and implemented to provide a stable base for present and future existence.

November 1985 Minutes

013-015 November 11, 1985. Three-page letter on “Pine Mountain Association of Alumni & Friends” letterhead:

Jane Bishop Hobgood, President
George William Tye, Vice President
Betty Anderson, Secretary
August Angel, Treasurer
Ruth Shuler Dieter, Member at Large

Advisory Committee:
Jack Martin, Representative to the Board of Trustees
Pat Hall Martin, Past President
John Deaton, Past President
Paul Hayes, Past President
Ellen Ayers Hayes, Past President
James B. Urquhart, Director, PMSS
Carol Urquhart, Community Program Director
John Stephenson, President, Berea College Chairman of the Board

[013] To Members of the Advisory Council from Ruth Dieter, who reports on the last Advisory Council’s meeting at the August 1985 homecoming, which is also summarized in the Alumni Bulletin. She encloses the minutes by Jane Hobgood. She describes reports of activities from the Publicity and Acquisition of Friends Committee [014] and the Grants Committee. Mentions the new brochure for the Environmental Program. The chairman gave a report on the Council’s progress to the September Board of Trustees meeting. “The big red tank for the new water system is now in place at the top of the hill near the reservoir….” [015] The Association is raising funds to restore West Wind and asks members for donations. Next Association meeting will be April 11, 1986 (at the date of the spring Board meeting). Send program ideas to Jim Urquhart.

GALLERY: ALUMNI RELATIONS 1985 Association of Alumni & Friends Minutes (22 images)

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