1. The meeting was called to order at 9:05 a.m. on Thursday, August 11, 2005 in the third floor conference room in Green Hall, Chairperson Rice presiding. All members were present.
2. The Minutes of Executive Committee Meeting #3, July 14, 2005 were approved as corrected.
a. Copies of a letter from Professor Emeritus Albert J. Lott to Chairperson Rice regarding the Faculty Senate Resolution in opposition to the Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) policy of the military were distributed. In his letter Professor Lott provided suggestions for the Faculty Senate and the President for working together with RI's congressional delegation on efforts to repeal the military's policy.
Chairperson Rice reported that President Carothers had already spoken to him about the President's efforts to follow-up on the Senate's resolution.
b. Copies of the Report of the Ombud for 2004-05 and Provost Swan's memo to Ombud Rose response were reviewed. The Executive Committee agreed to include the report on the September 22 Agenda. Also discussed was the Provost's suggestion that the Ombud consider a possible role with regard to addressing parent's concerns.
c. The Agenda for the August meeting of the Board of Governors, which the Executive Committee had received by e-mail, was discussed briefly. Chairperson Rice informed the Executive Committee that he and Vice Chairperson Martin planned to attend the meeting on August 15, 2006 at the Narragansett Bay Campus.
d. Ms. Grubman distributed a list of dates for Executive Committee meetings during the fall 2005 semester. She noted that she would not be able to attend a meeting on October 4 because it was a religious holiday.
4. The Executive Committee discussed the following matters of continuing concern:
a. Follow-up on efforts to remedy administrative bottlenecks: Chairperson Rice and Senator Ramsay reported on the August 4 meeting with Vice President Weygand, which had been scheduled in response to Senator Kowalski's concerns.
They said that there was general consensus that there were problems that should be addressed as soon as possible and had identified the following as the highest priorities for improvement: 1) travel; 2) placing people on payroll and 3) managing grants and budgets. Among the first steps will be update and streamline procedures in the priority areas and to begin training, with the assistance of PSPD, business managers, assistant and associate deans, department chairs and directions, as well as employees within the administrative areas.
b. Program Assessment Model update: Chairperson Rice and Vice Chairperson Martin reported on the results of the beta testing that had been conducted during the spring semester. They noted that the response rate for faculty members had varied greatly by department. They said that some of the faculty members who had participated in the beta testing had provided comments and that they, along with former Chairperson Boudreaux-Bartels, planned to revise some of the questions before the model is released to the campus. The revised Murphy Model is now called the Academic Investment and Improvement Model (AIIM).
It was agreed that the next step would be to inform the Senate on the status of the model at its first meeting. The Senate Meeting would be followed by a Faculty Senate sponsored open forum to ensure that as many members of the academic community as possible are informed about the model and plans for its implementation.
Chairperson Rice reported that former Chairperson Boudreaux-Bartels, Assistant Provost Katz, and Ms. Morrissey had made a presentation on the development of the model for URI at a Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) Conference earlier in the summer. The model had been well received including a number of requests to purchase materials. As a result, the Faculty Senate will receive income to the Senate's URI Foundation account.
c. Mission Statement: Senator Barbour said that after a number of meetings, the subcommittee on the Mission Statement had agreed to a very concise statement. She said that she expected it to be presented to the JSPC at their retreat. She also reported that, thanks to the work of Chairperson Rice, the subcommittee decided to post a more comprehensive history of the University on the web. (See http://www.uri.edu/home/about/history_timeline.html.)
d. JSPC: The Executive Committee reviewed the Agenda for the all-day retreat on August 12 at the Alton Jones campus. It was noted that the morning session would include a report by President Carothers on trends in higher education, presentations by Vice President Beagle on recommendations by the consultants for the capital campaign and Vice President Weygand on the capital improvement plan, as well as Provost Swan's introduction of the Mission Statement draft. Afternoon sessions would be devoted to considering initiatives and strategies for the next strategic plan.
e. Committee Appointments: The Executive Committee reviewed the status of committee assignments for the 2005-06 academic year.
f. Providence Campus Committee: Vice Chairperson Martin reported that she and Ms. Grubman had met with Associate Dean Ferszt and had agreed to a number of issues to be discussed at the committee's first meeting which was scheduled for September 2.
g. University-wide Land Grant, Sea Grant and Urban Grant initiative Committee: Chairperson Rice shared the most recent draft of his memorandum to faculty members inviting them to volunteer to serve on the committee. He also reported on recent conversations and correspondence with Provost Swan and Interim Vice Provost Pasquerella about the committee.
The Executive Committee encouraged Chairperson Rice to move forward with the Provost with plans for the committee.
5. The Executive Committee discussed plans for September:
a. Chairperson Rice reported that he had drafted letters to ex officio members of the Senate encouraging their attendance and participation at Senate meetings. He also noted that he was working on the chair's welcome letter to Senators and the university community.
After discussion, Chairperson Rice said that he would circulate his draft to members of the Executive Committee before their next meeting.
b. Ms. Grubman outlined for the Executive Committee the matters of business that she expected to be on the Agenda for the first meeting of the Faculty Senate on September 22. Items included annual reports from the Ombud and the Honors Program and Visiting Scholars Committee, recommendations by the Executive Committee for Manual sections on the calendar and for the Providence Undergraduate Initiative Committee, as well as committee appointments for the 2005-06 academic year. Also discussed was whether a report from the Student Rights and Responsibilities Committee would be forthcoming for the first Senate meeting.
c. The Executive Committee agreed to continue to ask ex officio members of the Senate to sponsor receptions after Faculty Senate meetings and Chairperson Rice agreed to contact the appropriate administrators.
6. The Executive Committee discussed the following items of unfinished business:
a. Plans for conducting a survey in the spring semester;
b. Rescheduling the meeting with the Provost and the Director of Health Services about excuses for students absent from class because of illness;
c. The 2004-05 Executive Committee's list of budget priorities.
The meeting was adjourned at 10:50 a.m.
Sheila Black Grubman