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Brown Corporation meets with 10 students about divestment

Corporation approves International and Public Affairs school

The “University is operating in a financial climate where multiple factors create considerable financial pressure,” Paxson said, including “little projected growth in undergraduate tuition, with no plans at Brown for further expansion of the undergraduate student body.”
The “University is operating in a financial climate where multiple factors create considerable financial pressure,” Paxson said, including “little projected growth in undergraduate tuition, with no plans at Brown for further expansion of the undergraduate student body.”

The Corporation, Brown University’s highest governing body, met with 10 students to discuss a proposal for divestment from companies affiliated with Israel and approved the establishment of a School of International and Public Affairs, President Christina Paxson P’19 P’MD’20 announced in a press release early yesterday morning. 

The Corporation also approved an operating budget of $1.79 billion in revenues and $1.83 billion in expenditures for the 2025 fiscal year.

Five representatives from the Corporation spoke with five student representatives from the Brown Divest Coalition, The Herald previously reported. Corporation members also held a separate meeting with five other students who shared concerns about divestment actions.

Now that those meetings have concluded, the proposal for divestment will follow Brown’s formal process for consideration before the Corporation votes on it in October. 

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By Sept. 30, student representatives will submit a recommendation on divestment to the Advisory Committee on University Resources Management, a committee that offers non-binding recommendations to Paxson. Paxson will share with the Corporation in advance of the vote. 

The process of bringing the recommendation to a vote was described in an agreement between the University and protestors with the Brown Divest Coalition, the pro-Palestine student group that organized a Main Green encampment earlier this semester. 

“Discussions with each set of students were constructive, and the members of the Corporation expressed appreciation to the students for sharing their views and perspectives,” Paxson wrote.

The Corporation also approved the establishment of a School of International and Public affairs out of the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs. New initiatives include the creation of a Master of Public Affairs program, as well as “an undergraduate concentration, training for doctoral students and possible future master’s-level certificates,” Paxson wrote.

The change, which has been expected since its approval by faculty in April, is characteristic of long-standing attempts by the administration to prioritize the growth of the Watson Institute. Paxson, who arrived at Brown in 2012 with the goal of “strengthening Watson and using Watson to strengthen allied departments,” served as the dean of Princeton’s School of International and Public Affairs before assuming the presidency at Brown.

The Corporation also accepted over $118 million in gifts and approved $1.79 billion in revenues and $1.83 billion in expenditures, with an operating deficit of $46 million — 3% of total revenue — for its 2025 fiscal year, which begins July 1. The budget includes a 7% increase in undergraduate financial aid.

The “University is operating in a financial climate where multiple factors create considerable financial pressure,” Paxson said, including “little projected growth in undergraduate tuition, with no plans at Brown for further expansion of the undergraduate student body.”

“Endowment forecasts are anticipating more modest investment returns than in recent record-setting years,” necessitating “careful financial management” to limit future deficits, Paxson added.

The Corporation approved relocation and renovation plans for the Haffenreffer Research Collection and the Prince Lab, respectively. Paxson’s letter also detailed the election of six trustees and one fellow, the appointment of faculty to named chairs and the establishment of a new archaeology professorship and two masters programs. Finally, the governing body approved the renaming of the Department of Cognitive, Linguistic, and Psychological Sciences to the Department of Cognitive and Psychological Sciences.

At the end of her letter, Paxson thanked outgoing Chancellor Samuel Mencoff ’78 P’11 P’15 and welcomed incoming Chancellor Brian Moynihan ’81 P’14 P’19, the CEO of Bank of America.

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Anisha Kumar

Anisha Kumar is a section editor covering University Hall. She is a sophomore from Menlo Park, California concentrating in English and Political Science who loves speed-crosswording and rewatching sitcoms.



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