Minutes for 09/10/08
Members present: Senators Feakes, Bond, Brown, Caldwell, Furney, C. Hazlewood, D. Hazlewood, Martin, McGee, Melzer, Shah, Stone, Warms, Wilson
Guests: Rebecca Prince, VPUA; Adam Epperson, University Star
Meeting called to order at 4:00.
- Projection System: Discussion continued regarding the installation of a projection system for the Senate conference room. Chair Feakes indicated that the Provost’s Office has agreed that the costs for the system should be shared between several groups who use the conference room during the year.
- Faculty Salary Data: Faculty Salary Data will be posted on the Senate webpage as soon as it is obtained from the Provost’s Office. The only question was who should be able to view the data. The Senate determined by consensus that only University faculty should have access to the data.
- Per Course Salaries: The Provost’s Office agrees that the Senate’s recommendation for a base per course salary of $3000 is reasonable. However, Dr. Bourgeois wants to look at salaries in general before making the adjustment from $2500 to $3000 in the base.
- Travel to Round Rock: The Provost’s Office will continue to provide a travel supplement for faculty working on both the San Marcos and Round Rock campuses, and is exploring ways to reimburse for the surcharges involved in using toll roads.
- Cancer Awareness Month: Senator Caldwell will write a draft letter to the President and circulate it to the Senators.
University Advancement: Dr. Rebecca Prince, VP for University Advancement, met with the Senate and discussed recent changes in University Advancement and the current capital campaign. Changes in the division have been primarily organizational, emphasizing fund raising, alumni involvement, and institutional marketing. The capital campaign, called the Pride in Action Campaign, has five pillars of excellence: Performing Arts, Academic Excellence, Athletics, Alumni Center, and the Library. The campaign is currently in its silent phase, the phase where most capital contributions are obtained. While goals are still moving targets at this time, the Academic Excellence Pillar has a flexible goal of at least eighty million dollars and the Performing Arts Pillar is seeking at least sixty million. Dr. Prince indicated that more information would be coming as the campaign advances. Any questions should be addressed to her office.
Faculty Development Leaves: Discussion continued with regard to how the Senate would handle the coming applications for Faculty Development Leaves. It was finally decided that the process for the current cycle would be essentially the same that has been used previously, with the exception of posting the leave applications on the Senate’s TRACS page for review. After the current cycle has been completed, a subcommittee of the Senate will be formed to consider possible improvements in the review process.
PAAG Agenda: The Senate discussed possible PAAG agenda items. The determined agenda is:
- Graduate Commencement: Several faculty have expressed concern regarding the removal of the Masters hooding process from the commencement ceremonies. Since the Masters students represent a large portion of our graduate population and the University is investing significant resources to expand the graduate programs, it seems important to recognize their accomplishments. The Senate would be interested in what thoughts you might have on providing additional recognition to the Masters students at graduations.
- Gender Identity: In October 2007, the Associated Student Government and the Faculty Senate endorsed a change to UPPS 04.04.46 that would strengthen prohibition against discrimination, including harassment, by adding the phrase "gender identity and expression" to the list of protections that currently includes race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, sex, disability, age, and sexual orientation. The Faculty Senate would appreciate an update on the status of this proposal.
- Assistant and Associate Administrative Titles: There is an increasing presence of assistant and associate administrative titles on campus. These positions represent a consumption of often limited resources. The Faculty Senate would like to know if the administration intends to draft policy regarding the selection and evaluation of the personnel in these positions.
- Department Affiliation Changes: The Provost’s announcement of the relocation of the School of Social Work from the College of Health Professions to the College of Applied Arts beginning in the Fall 2009 raised the question of what role the faculty and faculty governance had in the decision to restructure the two colleges? Restructuring the colleges raises a number of issues including in particular what mechanism(s) exist to protect the faculty who began their tenure tract appointments under one set of guidelines, but who will now be under a different set of guidelines. Similar issues exist for the promotion of tenured and tenure track faculty. This kind of move impacts the faculty in both of the affected colleges in very complex ways that the Faculty Senate believes should carefully be explored among all of the faculty involved. To paraphrase the Provost, it is indeed a “divorce” but it is also a “remarriage” with all the accompanying complexities.
5. Cancer Awareness Month: Cancer continues to be a major health concern in our nation and one that touches the lives of many members of our institutional family. Efforts are underway to promote cancer awareness across the campus next spring through a host of student-oriented activities. The Faculty Senate supports those efforts and requests that the President join us in this support by designating April as Cancer Awareness Month at Texas State University.
Minutes: Minutes for 09/03/08 were approved as amended.