1. The meeting was called to order at 10:05 a.m. on Tuesday, October 17, 2006, in the third floor conference room in Green Hall, Chairperson Rice presiding. All members were present.
2. The Executive Committee discussed materials on library serials, which had been presented to the Council of Deans by Interim Dean Maslyn and Professor O'Malley. It was agreed to forward the materials to the Library Committee and to request the committee invite Dean Maslyn and Professor O'Malley to make their presentation to them as well.
3. The Executive Committee reviewed the draft Agenda for Faculty Senate Meeting #2, October 26, 2006. Ms. Grubman reported that the State of the Budget materials had not yet arrived but she expected them before the end of the day. The two other reports to be included in the Agenda, the 444th Report of the Curricular Affairs Committee and Graduate Council Curricular Report #2006-07-1, had been forwarded to the FSEC separately.
Vice Chairperson Luebke explained that she would be away on October 26 and asked that a member of the Executive Committee handle her floor responsibilities. It was agreed that Senator Kinnie would present the Minutes of the Executive Committee and of the Joint Strategic Planning Committee. Vice Chairperson Luebke said that she would ask a member of the Curricular Affairs Committee to present the CAC Report.
4. Provost Swan joined the committee for a few minutes to announce that her office would again transfer $1000.00 for travel to the budgets of each of the FSEC member's department. The Executive Committee thanked the Provost for delivering the good news in person.
5. The Executive Committee discussed the following matters of continuing concern:
a. Proposal to make SATs optional for admission to URI: The Executive Committee discussed the proposal under consideration by the committee chaired by Vice Provost Pasquerella. It was noted that the only faculty member on the committee was Professor Karen Ramsay, who chairs the Admissions Advisory Committee. In addition to Vice Provost Pasquerella and Professor Ramsay, other members of the committee are Mr. Harry Amaral, Director of Enrollment Services, Ms. Deborah Grossman-Garber, Director of Student Learning, Outcomes Assessment and Accreditation, Dean Cynthia Bonn and Assistant Dean Joanne Hood from Admissions, Ms. Rohland from Student Disability Services, and Ms. Emily Anderson, a graduate student intern.
It was noted that both section 16.32.10 of the General Laws of the State of Rhode Island and Article II, paragraph 1 of the Faculty Senate Constitution listed admissions policy as the responsibility of the Faculty Senate.
Following discussion, it was agreed to charge the Admissions Advisory Committee to work with Vice Provost Pasquerella's committee and make a recommendation to the Faculty Senate about SATs before the end of the academic year. Senator Miller said that he would send an initial draft recommendation on the SATs to the members of the FSEC for their review.
b. JSPC: The Executive Committee discussed the October 12 meeting of the JSPC, which included a discussion of the proposal to eliminate SATs as a requirement for admission and the discussion of the Nature and Efficiency of Information Flow.
It was noted that there have been significant changes in the division of administration and that greater improvements were expected as the newer edition of PeopleSoft is implemented. The Executive Committee questioned the assumption that making processes more streamlined would not necessarily afford any real savings. It was agreed to ask Mr. Wyman for data support of his statement that only 10% of purchasing orders are processed through the state system.
c. URI 101: The Executive Committee discussed the request from the UCGE Subcommittee on URI 101 for more specific direction with regard to the Executive Committee's request.
The FSEC reviewed a draft memo to Professor Honhart, Chair of the UCGE Committee and the URI 101 Subcommittee, which had been prepared by Chairperson Rice in response to the request. They suggested modifications and Chairperson Rice agreed to revise his draft and forward it to the Executive Committee for further review.
President Carothers' arrival was delayed until 11:30 a.m. because of a miscommunication between the Senate Office and the President's Office.
6. The President met with the Executive Committee from 11:30 to 11:45 a.m. The following matters were considered:
a. Blue Ribbon Commission on Futuring: The Executive Committee and the President agreed that the establishment of the Commission should be delayed until after the NEASC Self-Study was completed. The Executive Committee encouraged President Carothers to continue to consider an appropriate person from outside the University who might be asked to chair the commission once it is established.
b. The Vice Provost for Research, Graduate Education and Outreach and Dean of the Graduate School: President Carothers reported on the meeting that he and Provost Swan had with the members of the search committee. The Executive Committee expressed their concerns that a strong candidate be appointed and offered suggestions for improving the non-salary incentives for the person offered the position.
c. AIIM in the University’s Strategic Planning Process: In response to a question from the Executive Committee, President Carothers said that he wasn't sure how useful the AIIM was with regard to strategic planning, but it provided some useful comparative data to departments and colleges to identify strengths and weaknesses for self-improvement. He noted that the data prepared by Assistant Provost Katz to inform the various financial aspects of AIIM has been more useful to his office than the old PCA.
The President reported that he was scheduled to meet with Provost Swan, Vice Provost Pasquerella and Assistant Provost Katz to discuss the AIIM results. He noted that the problem at the current time is that there isn't any money to enhance and improve programs that show promise and the only way the University can find additional funding to support programs would be by deciding to eliminate other programs. He suggested that the AIIM hadn't been effective in providing information for decisions about eliminating programs.
The Executive Committee and President Carothers discussed the possibility of the FSEC inviting Commissioner Warner to meet with them during the 2006-07 academic year.
When President Carothers left the meeting the Executive Committee moved to the next item of business
7. Chairperson Rice brought the following section of the UNIVERSITY MANUAL to the attention of the Executive Committee:
4.40.10 The University Faculty shall meet at the beginning of the academic year for an address by the President, at other times determined by the President or when a meeting is requested in writing by 25 percent of the faculty. The faculty shall regulate its own procedure.
The Executive Committee discussed the gradual decline of the fall convocation over the last several years: by eliminating a formal speech by the President, combining Convocation with the URI Foundation Excellence Awards, and linking it with the inauguration of the Fall Honors Colloquium, until its elimination entirely two years ago.
The Executive Committee agreed that the appropriate time for an address to the faculty by the President was at the first general faculty meeting of the academic year, which has preceded the first Faculty Senate Meeting for at least eight years. It was agreed to suggest to President Carothers that his speech to the faculty be reinstituted at the first general faculty meeting of the 2007-08 academic year
8. The Executive Committee agreed to the following list of topics for their October 24 Meeting with Provost Swan:
a. Proposal to Adopt a "Test Optional" Policy for Admission to URI;
b. Vice Provost for Research, Graduate Studies and Outreach and Dean of the Graduate School;
c. Review of academic support programs and non-degree granting academic programs.
The meeting was adjourned at 12:20 p.m.
Sheila Black Grubman