1. The meeting was called to order at 10:00 a.m. in the President's Conference Room, Green Hall, Chairperson Swallow presiding. All members were present.
a. Ms. Black Grubman announced that Phil Teixeira is replacing Frank Pari as the Faculty Senate's technical assistant. She expressed her thanks for a job well done by Mr. Pari and said she was grateful for the support for the Faculty Senate provided by the Provost's Office.
b. The AAUP's annual Tenure and Promotion Workshop will be held on September 24, 2010, 1-4 in the University Club.
c. A flyer about the AAUP's Annual Conference and call for papers on faculty governance was distributed.
d. The Newsletter from the Provost's office was discussed. Members found it informative and well done.
e. Senators Honhart and Eaton announced that they had attended the Division of Research & Economic Development Open Forum. There is a vacant Assistant Vice President position. Raymond Walsh, Intellectual Property Management Technology Transfer Specialist, has been appointed to the position of Interim Assistant Vice President for Intellectual Property Management and Commercialization to replace David R. Sadowski who recently resigned. The restructuring of the division was shown. Most significantly pre and post award offices are now combined under Director Mary Kate DeMarco. Faculty were asked to be patient while the changes are in progress.
f. A faculty member has communicated to the committee a concern over the procedures that colleges use to select senators. Each year in March, Ms. Black Grubman sends a memo to the Deans about proper procedures to elect representatives from their respective colleges. This year, Ms. Black Grubman will send a more detailed reminder regarding these procedures.
3. Discussion of September 20, 2010 meeting with Provost DeHayes
a. Provost DeHayes had mentioned that the triggered program review will be conducted annually. He suggested that if URI produced our own review and reports in advance of their call for reports it will be to the University's benefit. This should be conducted through the APRC and JCAP.
b. Provost DeHayes mentioned that the university is still aiming for an overall 16:1 student/faculty ratio. The FSEC would like to know exactly how the 16:1ratio is computed. The Executive Committee noted that it is difficult to count when a faculty member is leading internships, bought out for research, etc. The FSEC agreed to ask Dean Libutti how it is calculated.
c. At a previous meeting, the FSEC asked Provost DeHayes about the emphasis placed on teaching, scholarship, and service since the FSEC has had prior discussions about motivating more faculty to get involved in service-related programs and positions at the department, College, and University levels. The sense was that some of the junior faculty were being advised not to participate in service as it doesn't "count" as much as the other two areas for promotion and tenure decisions. Provost DeHayes stated that the promotion and tenure (P&T) procedures are voted on by faculty and that his office did not set the criteria that are included in the AAUP-URI contract regarding P&T.
The FSEC discussed what suggestions they could send to the Provost in encouraging departments and Colleges to promote the importance of service to the faculty and to promote a culture of participation in University goals. How can the FSEC advocate for incentives for behavior they want done. The Executive Committee should also remind committee chairs to write acknowledgment letters for service and perhaps have a forum cosponsored with the Provost. Senator Larsen offered to create a Google doc so that members of the FSEC could put together their ideas on this issue.
4. Preparation for Faculty Senate Meeting #1, September 23, 2010: It was noted that Vice President Weygand would be out of town on September 23 and would not be able to report to the Senate on the Capital Improvement Plan until the October Senate meeting.
The Executive Committee continued to discuss how to have more informal reports and discussion during Senate meetings.
5. Issues for consideration:
a. Moving ahead on matters remaining from 2009-10:
1) Confucius Center Review: The report is now in draft form.
2) New Program Proposals: The FSEC was reminded that JSPC used to review new program proposals and make recommendations to CAC. This has not been included in the charge of JCAP. The Executive Committee realized there could be many other mentions of JSPC in the manual that need to be changed, as JSPC no longer exists. They agreed to charge CBUM to find all instances of "JSPC" and "JEPC" in the Manual and make recommendations for implementing those tasks in other ways.
The process for new has been: Department -> College -> CAC/Graduate Council -> JSPC & Dean's Council & Budget Office ->CAC or Grad Council -> Senate -> President -> BOG
Idea: Should the Budget Office be involved earlier in case is the program is denied approval because if the budget? Could the Dean's council replace the same function of JSPC?
3) Future of the Library: This was discussed with the Provost. There will either be a new committee called the "Future of the Library Committee" or the FSEC will charge the Faculty Senate Library Committee to conduct the study with an augmented membership. In either case the topics to be studied would include the Learning Commons, digitalization, open access, information literacy. Senator Larsen will draft a charge.
b. Other possible issues:
1) Facilitate interdisciplinary programs and courses: The FSEC will look for JCAP reports for more information about interdisciplinary courses at the University.
2) Multiple committees on campus (e.g. diversity): Maximize faculty involvement and efficiency. Efforts should be collapsed as much as possible to prevent duplication of labor. Help groups work together and communicate more effectively.
3) Teaching Effectiveness Committee IDEA-SRI's: There is lots of concern. The results seem inaccurate and/or inconsistent. If the course is not popular, that becomes an issue. Comments from students are not always respectful. Students report that they are too long and are left incomplete for that reason. Senator Ciccomascolo said she would work with Jim Kinnie, chair of the Teaching Effectiveness Committee, and Vice Provost Beauvais to create focus groups and a subsequent survey about the faculty and their use of the IDEA instrument.
4) Issues that are sole province of the Faculty v. broader University Issues:
The Executive Committee is concerned about the Capital Improvement Process with regard to setting priorities. Currently, the faculty involvement comes at the end through SBPC. This is something that should be addressed more thoroughly.
5) Work with the Student Senate: Members of the FSEC recommended contacting David Coates, President of the Student Senate first to get his feedback on how to work with them more collaboratively.
6. Unfinished Business
a. SBPC report from Senator Honhart. This will be made public after the next BOG meeting.
b. Administrator evaluation: The evaluation process for Dean Brownell and Dean McKinney is underway. V.P. Katz will be evaluated next spring. Dr. Bill Rosen is the coordinator of Administrator evaluations.
c. The FSEC will send a letter to Ombud Vin Rose who suffered a heart attack over the summer. The FSEC will include his report for 2009-10 on a future Senate Agenda.
The meeting adjourned at 12:00 noon.
Sheila Black Grubman