Senate Minutes

April 21, 2015

EB 162

President Lugo presiding

Call to order:  2:07

Quorum confirmed - 47

 

 

March 1 minutes approved with no objections or corrections.

I.                    President Lugo announced a change in the agenda to allow for a Special Order of the Day � nominations for Faculty Assembly delegates.  The Faculty Assembly is an advisory board to the UNC system President.  The FA meets 6 times during the academic year and provides the opportunity to meet with colleagues from across the system, learn about different institutions, and discuss our common challenges.  The FA helps to make the system as good as it can be.  With the upcoming change in the system President, exciting times are ahead.  The UNCW Senate President is also a member of the FA delegation, and Stuart Borrett is continuing as one of our delegates.  There are two openings for new delegates; the terms are for 3 years.  The floor was opened to nominations.  Nancy Ahern, Jeanie Pursuit, and Candace Thompson were nominated, with all in favor and no objections to the slate.

 

II.                  Chancellor�s Report �

Congratulations to the delegates, and to Gabriel, who will be serving as President-elect of the Faculty Assembly.  Chancellor Sederburg expressed his thanks for the past year.  The legislative session is going well, with good support for the enrollment growth dollars , a big ticket item for UNCW.  There has also been support for giving campuses more flexibility with carry-over monies.  The new bonding issue has not fared as well, although the Governor was in favor.  UNCW is not on the list, but there is hope that a new Allied Health building will be added.  One issue is that the bond vote may do better on a presidential election year.  Max Allen will be leaving May 12, to take a position at Clemson to be Chief of Staff.  A search committee is being formed now, with the aim of providing the new Chancellor with a couple of options.  The same holds for our legal counsel.  Ongoing searches for Dean positions have yielded four finalists in Education, and three in Business.  The recommendation is that the new Chancellor should interview the finalists, and the selection should be his choice.  These actions will probably take place over the next two weeks.  There will be other administrative changes, but these can�t be announced yet.  Chancellor Sederburg then introduced the new interim Provost, Dr. Marilyn Sheerer, and expressed his support for her.

Comments from Provost Sheerer � ECU�s Faculty Senate is much more formal in operations.  Provost Sheerer has been spending  time meeting folks on campus and in town.  Her grandchildren go to Friends School, and she has met folks there.  She reports hearing several messages in these discussions.  People are still very positive about UNCW and what we do.  We�re not broken � just in transition.  Provost Sheerer applied for a position at UNCW once  before.  The timing wasn�t right then, but she like this institution and what�s going on here, and she�s excited to be here.  The trick is to determine what the problems are and can be done about them.  She understands there are concerns that faculty haven�t been as involved in decision making as they should be, that certain units have been isolated, and that there has been a lack of transparency, especially with respect to budget.  She spoke of sense-making, and the need to understand where each perspective is coming from. She anticipates that she and the Faculty Senate President may not always agree about how things are working, but promised to always be at the table.  Her perspective will likely be different when she returns to the facuIty.  She will serve at UNCW from June 15 to next Aug, and looks forward to it, and to working with Faculty Senate.  At ECU, she and the Chancellor there met with the Senate leadership prior to each meeting, which helped in making progress.

III.                President�s Report �

Senators should keep an eye on the process for selection of the new UNC President and on BOG inserting themselves in searches for new Chancellors.  The main focus for today will be on final policy approvals, some of which can be implemented right away and some of which will have to wait for implementation.  There are still a few changes to the Faculty Handbook that will need faculty approval.

 

IV.                Committee Reports �

 

A.      From the UCC

a.       2015-04-MO1 � department name change from FLL to World Languages and Cultures.   Motion passed by voice vote.

b.       Catalogue and curricular change to the History minor.  Vote was 49 in favor, 1 against.  The motion passed.

B.      From the Steering Committee

a.       MO 2015-04-MO2 � Final version of the Policies on Academic Freedom and Tenure.  A faculty committee met with individuals from AA to work out final details in the document.  Some changes were made in the language but not in the structure of the document.

                                                                                       i.      There was some push back on Senate decision (by a large majority) that the definition of senior faculty would be decided at the department level.  The Senate previously voted down the suggestion that the Dean would decide.  There were concerns about departments that have very few full professors, with worries about �take-over� by associates.  The current wording now includes �decided in consultation with the Dean.�

                                                                                     ii.      With respect to the probationary period for tenure, the Senate originally voted on 2 years.  This has now been qualified, given concerns on the part of the Chancellor and others.  The current wording now specifies that a 2-year approval window would be a true exception and would require truely exemplary performance. 

                                                                                    iii.      A statement was added to clarify that when a Hearings Committee member is excluded from considerations, s/he will not be included in the count to determine the quorum.  Any objections to including this statement?  No objections raised.

                                                                                   iv.      Some obsolete wording about the appointment of instructors was removed.  We no longer have the rank or instructor.  There were no objections to these deletions.

                                                                                     v.      It was noted that Senators should report back to their departments that when there is disagreement between the senior faculty and the chair regarding an RPT decision, both the senior faculty and the chair must write letters to go forward with the portfolio, explaining their decisions.  This is now codified in the PAFT document.

                                                                                   vi.      It was noted that language is still needed to clarify steps in the appeal procedure to be taken when the CRPT Committee makes a negative RPT decision.  This is an important issue.

                                                                                  vii.      A final vote on the document was called.  The vote was 43 in favor, and 7 against, so the PAFT motion passed.  The PAFT will go next to AA (who has indicated their approval), then to the Board of Trustees, and then on to the President�s office.

                                                                                viii.      President Lugo thanked everyone for the time spent in extra meetings, all who spent so much time looking at the details, two super editors, the deans, provost, and special committee.  This is an accomplishment for us, and it is important that these policies don�t become stagnant.  A round of applause followed.

 

b.      MO 2015-04-MO3 - Final version of the Faculty Handbook.   President Lugo reviewed changes from the previous version of the Handbook.

                                                                                       i.      The new Policies on Academic Freedom & Tenure will be included once approved.

                                                                                     ii.      Wording for promotion to Professor (either regular rank of Professor or rank of Research Professor) � changed �tangible� to �sustained� to address situations in which a faculty member did lots of work early in her/his career, had an inactive period, and then was considered for promotion.   The wording change was moved and seconded.  The motion passed by voice vote.

                                                                                    iii.      Motion from the Research Committee � that the timetable and policies for promotion of Research Faculty will be established by the department with which the individual is affiliated.  An amendment was offered � that �department� be changed to �appropriate academic unit,� because some faculty (e.g., CMS) do not have home departments.   The amendment was approved by voice vote.  The motion thus amended was then approved, also by voice vote.

                                                                                   iv.      Many other minor changes were reviewed.

                                                                                     v.      In reference to the CRPT disregarding information received outside of the applicant�s dossier, it was recommended that the word �additional� be changed to �unsolicited,� for clarification.

                                                                                   vi.      Questions were raised about the wording with respect to a tie vote by senior faculty on an RPT decision.  There was sentiment to remove the statement regarding a tie vote.  A voice vote approved the deletion of the parenthetical statement about tie votes by senior faculty.

                                                                                  vii.      RPT applications can now be done electronically, but this will be grandfathered in to avoid major shock.  No portfolios will be rejected for now.

                                                                                viii.      With respect to reporting IDEA scores, it was noted that the response rates for each course really need to be included, or the scores are meaningless.  A motion was made and seconded to include these data for each course.  The vote was called � votes were 45 in favor, 2 against.  Motion passed.

                                                                                   ix.      A question has been raised about Handbook policy specifying that internship programs are limited to 6 hours.  This policy has been in place since 1999, but starting in 2000 a number of departments increased their internships to allow from 1-12 hours.  There should have been a concomitant change in the Handbook policy, but there�s no record of this happening.  The policy has never appeared in the Catalogue.  A Motion was made to change the language to specify that �internship credits awarded shall not exceed 12 hours�.  It was noted that the Academic Standards Committee and the UCC should review the matter, and suggested (with a second) that the motion be referred back to ASC.  However, doing so would leave the Registrar with no choice but to cancel courses already being offered, which would mean that some students would not graduate.  It was noted that approving the motion wouldn�t  prevent the issue from receiving further consideration later.   The motion to forward to ASC was withdrawn.  Motion on the floor is to change 6 to 12.  An amendment to the motion was moved and seconded � to remove #1 in the present wording (where number of hours is specified) completely, which would give ASC time to consider.   There were no objections to this amendment.  A voice vote called � the motion passed as amended.

                                                                                     x.      A vote on the entire Handbook was called.  If approved, President Lugo will review all changes and align the Handbook with other documents.  We should be sure to keep the Handbook updated, and work to have ongoing review of our policies.  The vote was 44 in favor, 1 against.  Motion passed.

                                                                                   xi.      Thanks were expressed to all, for all the work.  This is another big achievement. 

C.      From Academic Standards �

                                                                                       i.      MO 2015-04-M04, and 04-05 � change in antiquated language.  Both motions passed by voice vote.

                                                                                     ii.      MO 2015-04-M06 � The BOG requires that we now look at SAPS.  Starting this academic year, students with SAP difficulties were limited to 14 hours of registration.  This impacted 155 students for the spring semester, many of whom had solid GPAs.  This motion would create a new category for students with SAP issues, and not subject them to the 14 hour credit limit.  The vote was called � 44 votes in favor, 0 against.  The motion passed.

 

V.                  Senate President-elect Meinhold presented a plague to outgoing President Lugo, thanking him on behalf of all faculty for extraordinary service, leadership, and defense of shared governance.  There was a standing ovation.  President Lugo bequeathed President-elect Meinhold a copy of Robert�s Rules of Order.

 

 

Meeting adjourned 3:55.