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Data Governance

Data governance refers to the management of data assets. It involves the development and sharing of standards to keep data accurate, consistent, secure and accessible to support strategic decision-making and compliance with regulatory requirements.

Data governance will bring value to Dickinson through:

  • Ensuring that data is trustworthy and can be used to make decisions
  • Having consistent data terminology/definitions across systems (and departments) for compatibility and accuracy in reporting and analytics
  • Providing guidance on the proper use of data to protect sensitive information and avoid errors
  • Identifying clear responsibilities (e.g., steward, governance council) related to data.

If data is not managed properly, it can result in significant costs and impact the trust in the decisions made based on that data.

To ensure effective data governance, the Data Governance Council was established with several key responsibilities. The council serves as a platform to communicate and coordinate data-related issues and provides recommendations to senior leadership on issues with broad implications. It promotes data quality, standards, and a shared sense of data responsibility. The council identifies and affirms Dickinson’s Data Stewards, reviews overall policies and guidelines for managing and accessing institutional data, and raises awareness of its work to the Dickinson community. By fulfilling these responsibilities, the Data Governance Council helps ensure that data is managed effectively and is accessible to all stakeholders who rely on it.

Guiding Principles

  • Data is an Institutional Asset - Institutional data is not merely a byproduct of operations but is recognized as a valued asset, critical for decision-making and achieving goals.
  • Privacy, Confidentiality, and Security - The appropriate availability and usage of institutional data will be promoted and encouraged when conducting college business.
  • Shared Responsibility - Everyone has a role in ensuring data quality, data protection, and the responsible handling and use of college data.
  • Accuracy and Consistency - Ensuring that data is accurate, valid, reliable, and consistent across departments and technology platforms is critical for informed decision-making and operational efficiency.
  • Shared Understanding - Stakeholders across campus should share a common understanding of data definitions. This shared understanding ensures that data is used consistently and effectively to support goals and decision-making.

Data Glossary

The Data Governance Council has established a publicly available Data Glossary that contains definitions commonly used in college reporting.  The definintions are intended to increase understanding and inform decisions.

Jill Forrester, CIO and VP for Information and Technology Services David Walker, VP for Finance and Administration

Kathy Ballew, Executive Director of Advancement Services
Deb Bolen, Associate Provost for Curriculum
*Sarah Burkett, Director of Enterprise Applications
Amity Fox, Associate Provost for Experiential Learning & Fellowship
Catrina Hamilton-Drager, Senior Associate Provost for Academic Affairs
Angie Harris, Associate Vice President for Student Life
Sally Heckendorn, Bursar
Carole Kushner, Office Systems Manager
Miriam McMechen, Assistant Controller
Michelle Spencer, HR Data Manager and Systems Administrator
Tracey Snyder, Associate Director of Admissions Technology & Systems