MINUTES OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
OF THE FACULTY SENATE
MONDAY, APRIL 24, 2006 – Mason Hall, room D5; 1:30 – 2:30 p.m.
Members Present: Jim Bennett, Rei Berroa, Rick Coffinberger, Dave Kuebrich, Jim Sanford, Peter Stearns, Cliff Sutton, Susan Trencher.
Approval of Minutes: The minutes of our previous meeting March 27, 2006 were approved.
REPORTS OF THE FACULTY SENATE STANDING COMMITTEES:
Academic Policies – Cliff Sutton: A motion to approve the academic calendar without changes for 2006-2007 will be presented. Just before the last Senate meeting (April 5th), Cliff learned that many science faculty were concerned about changes to the starting dates of each semester which would create additional partial weeks. This negatively affects laboratory schedules, which must be conducted on a weeklong basis; presently there are three partial weeks in the Fall term. The examination of proposed changes to the academic calendar was a good exercise. Susan Jones, Registrar, has requested a statement which clearly explains why various proposed changes were not made to use when future suggestions regarding changes to the calendar are made. Dave thanked Cliff for all his hard work this year on this topic.
Budget and Resources – Rick Coffinberger: The committee is working with the librarians in the processing of Fenwick Fellowship applications. The deadline is May 3rd. Those who will receive awards should be notified before summer classes start.
A motion to request a report from the Provost’s Office detailing equity/special needs raises granted during the upcoming academic year will also be presented.
Faculty Matters – Jim Sanford: A second mailing to instructional faculty who have not yet submitted Faculty Evaluation of Administrators surveys will go out late this week or early next week.
Matt Kluger (Vice President for Research) has assured us that the Faculty Senate will be included as a signatory to proposals developed by the Research Council.
Nominations – Jim Bennett: No business items.
Organization and Operations – Rei Berroa: No business items. A general discussion regarding the representation of ICAR took place. Concerns expressed included Krasnow Institute faculty which have a primary affiliation elsewhere; as well as one or two ICAR faculty with more than one affiliation.
ANNOUNCEMENTS FOR THE AGENDA:
Faculty Handbook Revision Committee – Rick Coffinberger: Our last meeting this semester takes place this afternoon. We have spent a large amount of time soliciting input on issues to identify for revision. A collective recommendation on summer salary has been completed. In our last meeting, department study leaves and emeritus status were discussed. The committee will continue to meet over the summer and hope to meet more often during the fall.
Faculty Task Force on Salary Issues – Rick Coffinberger: The Task Force will schedule a follow-up meeting in the next ten days. The AAUP has just published on-line its yearly report of faculty salaries.
OTHER TOPICS OF DISCUSSION:
Procedural Notes: Tracking of Issues Submitted for Consideration by Senate Committees: Any issues to be considered by a senate committee should be sent to O&O first, which should then refer them to committee. In practice, folks contact the committee directly. Only two requests were directly sent to O&O this past year.
Strategic Vision Group Interview/Participation of Faculty: In response to a question raised by Chair Dave Kuebrich, Provost Stearns provided the following background information. Several members of the Board of Visitors have repeatedly urged the development of a set of criteria to become a world-class university by 2016. Paulien and Associates, a firm with expertise in higher education assessment, has been hired to help develop a statement. Dave was contacted to participate in a survey; hopefully other members of the Executive Committee will also be asked to participate. The faculty wish to be involved at the beginning of the planning process; the Faculty Senate should have the opportunity to review materials as well as to vote on the vision. A better understanding among faculty and administration that faculty will be immediately consulted is needed. The Provost responded that faculty representative attend BOV meetings; no one is trying to exclude anyone. We delayed the Board’s request to consider this in April until the fall so that faculty will have an opportunity to address this issue. A discussion of what measurements would be relevant is planned for the August BOV meeting. Forums and workshops will be held in September. The Provost wants to receive faculty comments, and nothing will be finalized during the summer. Is a distributed university potentially more likely to be a great university? The Provost responded that the distributed university is a separate concept, and no assumptions made whether distributed university supports this goal.
Discussion about “Academic Goals” memo: Faculty produced these goals; a world-class university must have world-class faculty; faculty to have a lot to say about what these goals are. Diversity may yield problems with newly-arrived students who speak English as a second language who may have difficulty understanding institutional issues. There are pluses and minuses to growth; quality implications need to be weighed. The Provost acknowledged that academic goals trend toward things which may not have as much academic bearing.
Salary Issues: Will it be possible to send copies of the Salary Task Force report as well as the April 19th meeting minutes to members of the BOV prior to their May 10th meeting? They need to know that faculty are very upset about this issue; particularly problems with hiring new faculty at market rates in which long term faculty are paid less.
Clerk, Faculty Senate