September 12, 2001
Senators Present: Renick (chair), Stutzman, Brennan, Hindson, Stimmel, Blevens, Blanda, Hays, Gillis, Sawey, Carns, McKinney, Stone
Guests: Marianne Reese (Council or Chairs representative), Mike Moore, Elizabeth Skerpan-Wheeler
The Senate was called to order at 3:58 pm by chair Renick.
The Senate observed a moment of silence to contemplate the outrageous acts of terrorism perpetrated on the United States on the previous day.
Chair Renick then briefly reviewed the agenda and asked if there were items to be added.
Report from the Council of Chairs
Senator Blevens, as the Senate representative to the Council of Chairs, reported that he had presented the newly established Senate goals to the COC. The COC indicated that they were particularly concerned with curriculum and orientation issues. Dr. Reese, the rotating representative of the COC to the Senate, commented that the Council of Chairs wishes to explore what the role of the COC might be in the overall system of governance at the University. She suggested that they would like to present this concern to the Senate at a future date. Senator Stimmel expressed the belief that the chairs were already adequately represented and informed through the College Councils. The Senate, however, welcomes the formal representatives of the COC to the Senate and is willing to enter into a dialog concerning the role of the COC in the system of University governance.
Chair Renick reminded the Senate that the University Council meeting was Sept. 13th and encouraged our attendance. Some time was spent discussing the purpose and the value of this council. It was mentioned that a committee to rewrite the by-laws for the council had been formed two or three years ago and that a second committee had been convened to determine the value of the committee. Although no one was positive it seemed that there had been a recommendation to dissolve the University Council as a redundant rubber stamp. It was also mentioned that there was some discussion at the upper administrative level to revamp the entire university governance system. The Senate expressed reluctance to enter into any alternative system that might dilute or homogenize the current role of the Senate. Meanwhile, several were anticipating the joy of attending the UC meeting the following day.
Global Strategies International - The Stockholm Accords
Dr. Skerpan-Wheeler presented the Stockholm Accords, which address a number of global issues concerning ethnic cleansing, human dignity, equitable rights and freedoms, etc. Some discussion ensued as to how to allow students to become better informed about these issues and how the faculty could respond appropriately. Dr. Skerpan-Wheeler was bringing the materials to the Senate as informational. She encouraged a greater awareness of these issues, especially through student organizations as a way of raising the collective consciousness.
In the previous Senate meeting a number of people were nominated to serve in a variety of committees to be appointed by VPAA Gratz and/or Dr. Supple. All faculty members suggested agreed to allow their names to be submitted for consideration for membership on the various committees.
Lengthy and heated discussion concerning the final recommendations of the Committee on Committees for the Curriculum Committee membership ensued. The Senate is very concerned that some Deans and administrative assistants have, perhaps temporarily, forgotten that recommendations for positions on Senate Committees go to the Committee on Committees and that the Committee on Committees then places the recommendations before the Senate for final approval. The Senate will be extremely vigilant about the appointment process because the issues of curriculum are rightfully perceived as being a major faculty concern. Any hint that this prerogative is being suborned will be met with great resistance. Have you met the Senate pit bulls yet? They are Division IA quality! Finally the Senate approved the motion (Stimmel/Gillis) to approve the Committee On Committeeís recommendations for the Curriculum Committee, 11 for, 1 against, 1 abstain.
Senator Stutzman brought a proposal to the Senate recommending that departmental chairs should not be eligible for developmental leave. These leaves are considered a faculty reward. Chairs are often granted a ìdevelopmental leaveî when they step down from the chair position it they remain on the faculty. It seemed unfair for chairs to absorb a leave that might otherwise go to a deserving faculty member. Because chairs are paid from faculty salaries Senator Gillis suggested that we table this discussion until we have had an opportunity to explore the legality of such a position.
Research Enhancement Grants
Senator Blanda informed the Senate that the Office of Sponsored Projects wants to have all REPs submitted electronically. It is hoped that this will be efficient and cost effective. He also wanted to remind the Senate and the Faculty that this Fall cycle of grant proposals will be the last grant cycle until fall 2002. After fall 2002 there will be only one cycle per year and that will be in the fall. Dr. Covington will begin to discuss the scoring process for proposal evaluation with the Faculty Research Committee and the Faculty Research Advisory Committees in order to normalize the process and to ensure equity. Questions were raised about why some grant recipients were having difficulty in getting reimbursements for what seemed like straight forward expenses. It was suggested that a single page of instructions on how to request payments and initiate RBCs, etc. might be helpful.
The following items were suggested for the PAAG meeting on Sept. 19, 2001:
Post Tenure Review, including recent cases and upcoming cases
President Suppleís replacement
Dean Review Process
Status of Chairs - are they faculty? what is their workload?
Concerns about appointments to Senate Committees
Post PAAG Agenda items will include conducting of Senate business outside of regular meetings, i.e., voting on an issue via email. Perhaps we could arrange a distance or virtual senate. See you in cyberspace?
Senator Gillis reported that this fall there were a limited number, four, of specific days during which students entering a program with few majors could meet faculty advisors during orientation. This was designed to relieve faculty advisors from the need to be available during all the orientation sessions, something the faculty and Senate had expressed concern about last year. She asked it that had worked for affected faculty.
Senator Blevens suggested that we invite Dr. Abbott to report on the recommendations made by the Transportation/Parking Consultant. The impossible dream in three acts.
The minutes for Aug. 29 and Sept. 5, 2001, were approved. The minutes for Aug. 15 remain under consideration or under construction.
Senate adjourned at 6:30 pm.
Minutes submitted with only minor angst by Joan Hays