After about nine months working on the Pomona College campus, Piya Bose transitioned from her original position as Associate Dean of Campus Life and Director of Residence Life to Director of Programs at the Smith Campus Center (SCC) Jan. 28, 2013.
Dean of Students Miriam Feldblum asked Bose to move to the SCC for the spring of 2013, since Susan Deitz, Director of Programs at the SCC, will be taking leave for the semester, and Chris Waugh, Associate Dean of Students and Director of the SCC, will not be on campus as frequently this semester as in the past.
“It’s not unusual to have some shuffling to shore up areas that need help temporarily,” said Ric Townes, Associate Dean of Students and Dean of Campus Life. “It would be hard to bring someone from the outside in.”
Bose is already familiar with the college and its students, but her new job requires interaction with areas of the college in which she was previously uninvolved. According to Bose, her new responsibilities include working with the Outdoor Education Center (OEC), the Claremont Colleges Ballroom Dance Company (CCBDC), and the art gallery program; co-advising the Associated Students of Pomona College (ASPC); and carrying out several smaller administrative tasks and duties, such as the college vehicle program.
“I am learning so much here—there are new processes and acronyms, along with spending more time with a different staff and student leaders,” Bose said. “There isn’t a formalized training in place; I’m learning as I’m going.”
Although Bose’s current focus is acquainting herself with the details of the programs with which she works, she has already begun to look toward the future. Within days of beginning the job, she made reservations for the 2013 first-year Orientation Adventure (OA) trips, and she started working with a student assistant to make plans for the student gallery space located upstairs in the SCC. The gallery space will be available to art majors during their junior year and will serve as a location to display student art during off-weeks.
“I’m really excited that Dean Feldblum asked me to take on this opportunity,” Bose said. “It’s expanding my areas of professional growth and interest, and that’s pretty exciting for me. Whenever there’s an opportunity that allows one to learn, they have to jump in and take it.”
Bose said that she is excited about working at the SCC largely because she has enjoyed working with Pomona students through the Office of Campus Life (OCL) over the past few months.
“I think that things went really well at OCL—the student leaders in that office are incredible. I really challenged them last semester, and they worked really hard,” Bose said. “Like any organization, there’s always room to grow. I wasn’t there long enough to influence that level of growth, but there’s not really anything I would have done differently.”
Although Bose only began working at the OCL in May 2012, she did work closely with Resident Advisors (RAs) in Smiley Hall, Oldenborg Center, Mudd-Blaisdell Hall, and Gibson Hall during the fall 2012 semester. According to Michael Mei PO ’14, an RA in Mudd-Blaisdell, Bose helped RAs develop a clear understanding of their roles and perform to the best of their abilities.
“It’s quite sad, because she’s only been working at the OCL for one semester,” Mei said. “I felt like she didn’t really get to show what she was really capable of. Piya is extremely hardworking, and she certainly rubbed that off on us. She was by far the hardest-working boss I’ve ever had.”
Bose does not foresee a return to working at the OCL in the near future, although there are no definitive plans for the fall of 2013. For now, apart from her new job at the SCC, she will continue to live on campus and perform her duties as part of the On-Call Dean program.
“We greatly appreciate what she brought to us, including a lot of great new ideas. We’re disappointed, but we understand that she is needed in another role,” Townes said. “We’ll miss her, and we’re at least happy that she’s just across the quad.”