The Committee on Admissions has compiled this review of the admissions procedure.
The timeline for the admissions process begins on the date the Committee has received a completed file and not when the proposer first contacts the Committee to discuss the potential candidate. As is the practice each year, the guidelines for determining the actual number of candidates that the Committee will review and elect to membership are discussed with and approved by the Council. The procedure for proposing a candidate for membership is clearly stated in Article II, Section 4 of the Club By-Laws.
In addition, the admissions process can be greatly enhanced if proposers adhere to the following key points:
· If you are interested in proposing an individual for membership, the first step is to discuss the candidate with either the Chairman or the Secretary of the Committee. You should be prepared to name the other Eastern members who will be involved as seconder and letter writers. Following this discussion, the Secretary will provide the proposer with an admissions packet.
· After receiving the admissions packet, the proposer is responsible for making sure the completed file, including all supporting letters, is delivered to the Secretary (and not to the Eastern) on a timely basis. While there is no upper limit on the number of supporting letters beyond the four required in the By-Laws, it is particularly helpful if the letters come from a diverse group of Eastern members.
· Whether you are a proposer, seconder, or supporter, please be certain that your letter provides specific details on your relationship with the candidate. It is also important to discuss any relationships the candidate may have with other Eastern members who are not be involved in the admissions process. You should focus your comments on the history of your friendship with the candidate and note the specific reasons he/she is interested in becoming a member.
· As a proposer, you will be expected to advocate for the candidate throughout the admissions process. Given that a period of time may elapse before the Committee begins its review of the candidate, this responsibility includes keeping the file up to date and pursuing additional supporting letters as deemed appropriate. Also, it is advisable for the proposer to contact the Chairman or Secretary of the Committee periodically to check on the status of the candidate file.
The Committee on Admissions would like to clarify certain points regarding the admissions procedure followed by the Committee:
· As stated in the Club By-Laws, "a candidate for admission...; must have met at least three members of the Committee on Admissions". In the past, this introduction requirement has been addressed at a proposer-hosted cocktail party to which the candidate and the Committee members are invited. Because the cocktail party is typically scheduled later in the Committee review process, the candidate's invitation has been perceived as a strong indication that he/she is ready to be posted and subsequently elected to membership. This may not always be the case, particularly if the Committee's first opportunity to meet the candidate is at the cocktail party. The Committee is interested in meeting a potential candidate as early as possible in the process. To do this, the Committee will arrange an informal pre-meeting between two or three Committee members and the candidate and his/her spouse after the initial review of the candidate's file has been completed.
· The Committee would like to stress the importance of receiving the bulk of the completed files for the upcoming season in the Fall so that the admissions process can be completed each year by late Spring.
· The Eastern has a continuing interest in attracting younger candidates, many of whom could qualify as legacies. Because the Club By-Laws do not specifically define a legacy, it is important to review the parameters used by the Committee for this category. The Committee defines a legacy as an existing member's son, daughter, grandson or granddaughter who "grew up in the Eastern" and is generally under the age of 30. While the admissions process for a legacy is the same as for any potential candidate, the Committee endeavors to act on a legacy in the year that the file is completed. Finally, the Committee is instituting a requirement that a completed legacy file be delivered at least six months prior to a critical birthday.
· Article II, Section 5 of the By-Laws states that "priority shall be given to those candidates, otherwise qualified, who are yachtsmen or whose primary interest is in yachting or sailing, regardless of yacht or boat ownership". In addition, the By-Laws provide the Committee with the option of electing a candidate who is "a sole owner of a yacht" or "has, in the judgement of the Committee on Admissions, demonstrated outstanding participation and interest in yachting" notwithstanding the membership limit of 450 regular members. While the Committee fully intends to continue to act in accordance with these By-Law provisions, it is important to note that "owning a boat" or "having an interest in yachting" are not the only criteria that are evaluated. Also, it should be noted that the Committee has the latitude to consider a qualified candidate whose interests may not yet include yachting. History has shown that such candidates and their families have developed yachting interests after joining the Club by taking advantage of the Eastern's excellent Family Sailing Program.
The Committee is always looking for qualified candidates. If you are involved in an existing file and/or are intending to support a potential candidate at a later date, all of us on the Committee look forward to working with you during the admissions process. Should you have any questions or issues, please don't hesitate to contact any member of the Committee.
Committee on Admissions 2017
Joseph S. W. Parker, Jr. (Chair)
Jonathan W. Lubeck
Catherine Dale Payne