Senate Minutes

Dec. 9, 2014

EB 162

President Lugo Presiding

 

Meeting called to order:  2:07

Quorum confirmed.

 

Minutes of Nov 11 and Nov 25 approved.

 

I.                    Special order of the day � election of the 2015/16 Senate President.  Steve Meinhold and Russ Herman are nominated from the floor.  Each is invited to come to the front and say a few words about his vision.

a.       Summary of statements:

                                                               i.      Meinhold � I love UNCW.  I appreciate what Gabriel and all Senators do, and would do my best to involve all in support of our core values.  I would be honored to serve.

                                                             ii.      Herman - The President�s role is to listen to concerns of all faculty, act as an advocate for the faculty, and for shared governance.  Gabriel has been a role model.  Things are changing almost daily around here � if elected, I would seek to find out what faculty need and want.

b.      Rules of order call for paper ballots for the election, and the candidates were asked to step out of the room.  Steve Meinhold was elected as the new President for 2015/16.

 

 

II.                  Chancellor�s report

a.       The Chancellor shared a PowerPoint presentation delivered previously to the BOT, on the rationale for recommendations regarding tuition and fees (and also related to the recent controversy over the track team).  The UNC system has a difficult budget system, with eight different calls for budget components.  November is about tuition and fees, and this is the first year of a 2-year recommendation.   The BOG will not allow more than a 5% increase per year, and we are required to be in the lower quartile of peer institutions nationwide.

b.      The Cabinet established four priorities as the basis for our tuition and fees recommendations.  These were to: 1) maintain human capital, 2) strengthen the academic core, 3) respond to technology needs, and 4) build a solvent athletic program.

c.       The recommendation was for a 4.02% increase in tuition for 2016, and a 4% increase for 2017, with a 4.9% increase in fees for 2016 and a 4.6% increase in 2017.  As evidence of the conservative nature of this recommendation, tuition and fees for each of our peer institutions were presented, and UNCW is at the bottom, $1434 away from the institution that would put us in the lowest quartile.

d.      Goals targeted by these recommendations will include bringing SPA employees to an 85% equity level.  Tuition increases are insufficient to cover across-the-board pay increases for all faculty, so pots of money will be set aside for retention purposes.  Ten new faculty positions have been identified in key departments, and there will be funding for applied learning and for research grant development ($150 thousand).  Efforts will be undertaken to upgrade and maintain our campus wi-fi systems (the average student brings five wi-fi devices). 

e.      Regarding athletics (Strategic Priority #4), UNCW has not had sound athletic operations over the years.  Chancellor Miller sought to get back on the right foot.  Athletics requested another increase in fees for support but this could not be approved without �rightsizing�.  We carry too many athletes for the amount of money we have.  The rightsizing is what hit the papers just now.  It is needed to get on the right footing.  (The recommended increase in fees includes $28 and $42 per student for the next 2 years respectively).  The announcement about team cuts had to happen now because students were finding out, so waiting until after finals, as we had wished, was not possible.  The cuts are a response to my challenge to put athletics back on sound ground instead of continuing to ask our students to pay more. 

f.        We are trying to restore key areas, but our tasks are limited compared to total needs.  Congratulations to Steve � political science rules!

g.       Summary of questions/discussion:

                                                               i.      How many empty faculty lines are being cannibalized for other purposes?  Response:  hundreds.  Chancellor Sederburg � this is something we need to take a look at.  We need a more transparent process.

                                                             ii.      In most places the chair has a budget and gets to make the decisions on how to use the money - to hire faculty, TAs , etc.  It�s important that the decisions get made at the department and dean level, with the faculty and chair involved.  The money being set aside to retain faculty should be determined by departments.  Chancellor Sederburg - I want it to be decentralized too.  We need a better budgeting system from the bottom up that aligns needs with budgeting.  This is more difficult than I thought given the history of top-down decision making.  I want to set the stage in my time here to move away from top-down.  Senator comment � the tradition has not been top-down for very long.

                                                            iii.      Will the faculty retention money follow the same �if you want to get a raise, you have to go out and get a job somewhere else� approach?  Chancellor Sederburg - Ideally, we need to be able to reward outstanding performance.  Money isn�t the only factor � environment and opportunity are important too.  I can�t say the other doesn�t work. If you do have that letter, we can work with that too.  Senator comment � That profoundly affects morale.

                                                           iv.      We�d like to know the exact number of faculty lines lost; we�re carrying that on our backs.  Chancellor Sederburg � We need to be careful about presenting our needs.  I want to say that we�re asking for increases for faculty.

                                                             v.      There seems to be a big difference between the recommendation and what the students wanted.   How did that happen?  Chancellor Sederburg  � I interceded.  Committee recommended a 4% increase with nothing for athletics.  Two years from now the school would have been very disappointed that we didn�t act to meet needs.  The Committee is advisory, and not everyone was happy with the decision, but the students were understanding.  I couldn�t see not having any resources for a new Chancellor coming in.

                                                           vi.      Concerns were expressed about the athletics decisions.  The Track and Field athletes are very visible, incredible ambassadors, and the programs are successful.  Who was involved in the decision, is this going before BOT or is it done, how do you justify getting rid of a successful program over ones that have not been successful?  Chancellor Sederburg � An advisory committee was put together by Miller.  It included one faculty member and they came up with a more draconian plan.  Several programs stepped up and raised money.  We�d need $600,000 for the Track & Field athletes, and a million to take care of the track.  Financially we just can�t sustain it.  The AD came up with this plan.  Some of the intangibles are visibility and many of the athletes are minorities, but we shouldn�t define sports as black or white.  I support the AD�s decision, but I�m open to input.  Bottom line is that Athletics has huge problems.  The big guys have driven up the costs, and fees or private funds are the only resource.  How much are the students here able and willing to support athletics?  $500 per student is already going to athletics from student fees.  I asked the AD to give me a plan, and this is what we received. 

                                                          vii.      Chancellor Sederburg - I�m excited to work on faculty retention.  A new book out called Drive by Daniel Pink discusses factors other than salaries � creativity, faculty development.

 

III.                 President�s Report

a.       President Lugo - shared an anecdote illustrating the deterioration of support for athletics for faculty over the years.  He described a conversation with Coach Sprecher who was dismissed from his job with zero notice, and Lugo reported having separation date on 48 people who have left athletics over the past two years.  We are bleeding talent from all areas.  I welcome the Chancellor�s challenge to find ways to retain.  We have to talk to people.  We have to do better.  I have issues with the ways things are handled.  There was budgeting for the track at one point, but decisions were made for the money to go elsewhere.  I am also concerned about the process.  The previous committee met every week, and had every data point.  This time the process was silent.  At the same time we are hiring a head Diversity Officer, we are losing enormous ground in our ability to retain African American students.  This will be viewed by some as doing away with a sport that attracts black students and bringing in a sport that attracts white students.

b.      Dean Hardy was asked to update us on PTR.  No actions will be taken today.  We�ll learn about changes since the previous Senate feedback.  Dean Hardy � The posted version of the document includes our initial thoughts. The major issue continues to be what to do when there is a mixed recommendation.  We recommended previously that the Provost would make a decision on such cases after consideration by the RPT Committee, but some weren�t comfortable with that.  The other issue involves what happens if the development plan isn�t executed, and it was suggested that we might name an arbitrator.  In the posted revised policy, we have included an introduction that shows where each of the compliance criteria is addressed, and we tried to make the document more readable.  We have mapped the 11 criteria we must address and provided an anchor to where the changes are made for each.  We still need to hear from Senators on the two key issues.  The next PRT Committee meeting is scheduled for Thursday at 8, we�d like to have your voice represented in the final revisions so we can vote in January.  President Lugo - This is how shared governance should be. 

c.       President Lugo - There is a mandate from BOG on giving credit for experience to military students.  We�re trying to assure that these decisions are made by faculty delegates from appropriate disciplines.  There should not be credit unless it�s deserved.  This is likely to raise issues regarding competencies for US.

d.      Terry Curran was invited to provide an update on working with Kings College to increase international students on this campus.  UNCW hasn�t made much progress in breaking into the market on its own despite good effort from faculty and OIP.  We�re in the bottom quartile in the UNC system with respect to number of international students.  The Direct Pathways program does direct marketing for us abroad, and recruits only students who meet our requirements. A preparation program focuses on ESL on this campus.  Once students reach a TOEFL score of 71, they would be admitted.  A summer program that brings about 100 students to campus would involve our faculty here.  This will help us get our name out, and bring benefits to our grad programs.  It is hard to compete with the big guys in NC and would take a lot of organization across campus to help make this work, including a business arrangement with Kings.  Doing so should provide lots of opportunities to build our international population, to be a high quality academic institution.

e.      President Lugo - Note that any distance courses now must be ADA compliant.  This requirement applies to any materials put on-line for your students.  Right now the courses directly affected are distance courses, but all courses may be impacted at some point.

 

IV.                Committee Reports:  Lugo - Thanks to the Chairs of UCC and USAC for working overtime on curricular items.

a.       UCC brings Motion 2014-12-MO1.  

                                                               i.      Motion on program revisions and additions presented by Stuart Borrett; lots of vetting has already taken place.

                                                             ii.      Vote was 47 in favor, 2 against.

b.      USAC brings Motion 2014-12-MO2, adding course options to multiple US categories.

                                                               i.      The committee is still considering the Senate�s question regarding having one course fall in more than one Approaches & Perspectives category.  This has raised lots of issues for the Committee, and needs time for full consideration.

                                                             ii.      Vote was 48 votes in favor, 1 against.

c.       USAC brings Motion 2014-12-MO3, regarding residency requirements for Explorations Beyond the Classroom.

                                                               i.      The proposal is to allow some credit-bearing experiences completed away from UNCW to be considered as satisfying the requirement, with standards and guidelines that USAC will set up. 

                                                             ii.      Discussion revealed some confusion in the wording of the motion, regarding a seeming conflict between reaffirmation of residency requirement vs a change to allow for appeals.

                                                            iii.      The Motion is sent back to the Committee, for wording clarification.

d.      Budget Committee report � Laurie Messinger.

                                                               i.      Updates � You have Budget Committee representatives on lots of campus committees.  Different members of the Committee serve on these.  A full Committee Report is posted on the SharePoint site. 

                                                             ii.      We are happy about the task force that�s looking to integrate our budget processes.  Currently the process seems rushed and without a lot of data; the pieces aren�t connected so we can�t see ultimate impact. 

                                                            iii.      Regarding tuition and fees, we might consider presenting the pitch for needs before the student committee comes to their conclusion, because that group did not really understand what it might mean not to raise fees. 

                                                           iv.      The Committee recommends that one of the three Faculty Assembly members should be from Budget Committee, and that a Budget Committee member should also sit on the Senate Steering Committee, even if ex officio. 

 

V.                  President Lugo � We need to return our attention to the Faculty Handbook.  Our homework over break is to review the Handbook, so we can complete the document in January.  We stopped previously with Recommendation 38 (MO6).  Particular attention is needed for the section on documentation to be submitted for RPT � should documentation cover the entirety of your work, or the work since tenure?  Either way, the language must be crystal clear.  We will also need to consider the section on processes for PTR of tenured library staff.  The goal is to finish the Handbook, in the same manner as for Policies of Academic Freedom. 

a.       Question from the floor - Should Senators anticipate meeting twice per month in the spring?

b.      Lugo � I don�t think we�ll need to do this much.  In February, we should be able to vote on the whole enchilada.

 

 

There were no Announcements

 

Motion to adjourn at 3:39.