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According to its mission statement, Marlboro College "promotes independence by requiring students to participate in the planning of their own programs of study and to act responsibly within a self-governing community."
The college's community assembly is modeled on the traditional New England Town Meeting. All students, faculty and staff members may participate, each with an equal vote. The monthly assembly governs community life and serves as a forum for college-wide issues. Community sentiment figures heavily into administrative decisions, and Town Meeting representatives serve on a number of faculty and administrative committees, and represent the students at trustee meetings. Town Meeting distributes thousands of dollars to committee projects and student initiatives
Elected Town Meeting officers include nine Selectpeople, who call meetings and function as community leaders.