The Graduation Contract Committee consists of the following people: your advisor, at least two faculty members selected by the Director, the Registrar staff person assigned to Johnston, and two Johnston students with approved contracts on file. The faculty and student slots are rotating not fixed. It is imperative that you submit your contract to the Johnston secretary at least one week prior to your committee date. This allows us to do the paperwork necessary for the Committee meeting.
What are Committee meetings like? They are usually held in the Bekins lobby. This means that they are open, public meetings. (If you have never attended a Committee meeting, we strongly urge you to do so before your contract is considered). Your advisor will introduce you, and the Johnston Registrar will summarize your file for the Committee. Next, you can add anything you wish that might help the Committee in its deliberations. Then the floor is open for questions and suggestions from the Committee. This is a negotiation session conducted, "With people who want to help you get the best education you can; the Committee is not The Enemy. If there are serious objections to your plan, then you and your advisor negotiate them with the Committee. These negotiations almost always succeed if both sides are open and flexible; remember that you come to the Committee with a plan, not a holy document carved in stone. After a thorough discussion of the issues, the Convener of the Committee asks for a vote.
Typically, there is consensus on the decision, which can take the following forms:
- Acceptance of your contract as presented
- Acceptance of your contract with "stipulations" (negotiated requirements) and/or "suggestions"
- Acceptance "in principle" with important matters to be renegotiated with your advisor and represented to the Committee
- Rejection of the contract.