1. The meeting was called to order at 1:05 p.m. on Friday, December 4, 2009 in the President's Conference Room, Green Hall, Chairperson Swallow presiding. All members were present.
a. Chairperson Swallow announced that the next meeting of the Board of Governors was scheduled for Monday, December 7. He said that he would not be able to attend the meeting and Senator Izenstark agreed to represent the Faculty Senate Executive Committee. The Executive Committee briefly reviewed the Agenda and agreed that nothing on the Agenda appeared to affect the Faculty Senate.
b. Chairperson Swallow reported that he had spoken to Vice President Weygand on the issue raised in the Cigar about trees on the Quad. Chairperson Swallow said that the Vice President had assured him that all of the trees that were removed were either obstructing something or were diseased. The Vice President had informed Chairperson Swallow that the Department of Lands and Grounds usually consulted with faculty when making planting and tree-cutting decisions and indicated that the new Director of Lands and Grounds will meet with the faculty members who had raised concerns.
c. The Executive Committee discussed correspondence with Vice President Weygand about the State of the Budget Address. It had been agreed that the Vice President would provide the Senate with a budget update on December 10, but would wait until the spring semester when the University knows more about the budget before presenting a formal budget address to the Faculty Senate.
d.Chairperson Swallow said that he had not heard from the President about the patent policy concern that had been raised by a faculty member although he had spoken briefly to Provost DeHayes about the concerns. He said that a representative of the Office of Research and Economic Development assured him that faculty concerns about the royalty policy are being brought to the attention of the Vice President. Chairperson Swallow said he hoped to discuss the issue with the President at their next meeting.
e. The Executive Committee discussed correspondence about the suspension and abolition of academic programs and the Faculty Senate's possible role with regard to suspension of programs despite no manual provision regarding this issue.
Chairperson Swallow reported that he and Vice Chairperson Ordoñez had met with the Provost and Vice Provost Beauvais about the suspension question. He also had a brief discussion with the Constitution, By-Laws and University Manual Committee about the matter.
The Executive Committee agreed that the possibility of the Provost's consulting with faculty before recommending program suspension should be raised at their next meeting with the Provost.
3. The Executive Committee reviewed the Agenda for Faculty Senate Meeting #4, December 10, 2009. It was agreed to add a new item 6, Reports of the Academic Plan Task Forces, to the Agenda and begin with an update from Senator DiCioccio on the General Education Task Force's initiative for fall 2010.
Chairperson Swallow reported that he had met with the CBUM Committee about the Graduate Council's decision to take no action on the recommendation for the abolition of the Master's degree in Community Planning. He said that it had been the consensus of the CBUM Committee that, in accordance with section 8.87.10 of the UNIVERSITY MANUAL, a formal motion to abolish a program must be voted upon by the Senate.
It was agreed that Chairperson Swallow would discuss with the Graduate School Dean the possibility of having the informational item withdrawn from the Graduate Council Report and a motion to abolish the program by the Dean of the College be placed on the January Faculty Senate Agenda for a vote.
4. The Executive Committee discussed the following matters of continuing concern:
a. Academic Plan and Task Forces: The Executive Committee reviewed the status of the various task forces that followed from the Academic Plan:
- General Education: Senator DiCioccio brought the FSEC up-to-date on the task force's plans for an initiative for freshmen entering in fall 2010 and responded to questions about the details of the plan. She said that she hoped to have more information for the Senate by December 10.
- Graduate Education: Vice Chairperson Ordoñez and Senator Eaton shared with the Executive Committee a draft charge to and possible membership of a Task Force on Graduate Education, which they had developed in consultation with Dean Zawia. The FSEC suggested some modifications to the draft.
- Research, Scholarship and Innovation: Chairperson Swallow said that he hadn't heard from Vice President Alfonso about the draft charge to and membership of the task force.
- Enrollment Management and Diversity: It was noted that these task forces had been established early in the process by the Provost and continued to meet.
- Interdisciplinary and Global: It was agreed that the charges to and membership of these task forces had been drafted and were back in the Provost's Office for discussion and possible revision.
b. Strategic Budget and Planning Council: It was noted that despite indications from the administration that they wanted to get the committee established by November, there hadn't been any feedback on the faculty nominations they had forwarded the previous week.
c. JSPC: The Executive Committee reviewed the charge to and membership of the JSPC, which Ms. Grubman had provided (See sections 5.70.10-12 of the UNIVERSITY MANUAL). They decided that in light of the establishment of the Strategic Budget and Planning Council, they should consider whether it might be appropriate to propose modifications to the JSPC charge and membership.
5. The Executive Committee agreed to the following topics for their meeting with Provost DeHayes on December 11, 2009:
a. Transparency in action - possibility of providing rationale to and consulting with curriculum committees before recommending suspension of low enrollment degree programs.
b. Is there a mandate for 4-credit courses, or is it a suggestion that programs consider the change?
c. What is the status of the Strategic Budget and Planning Council?
d. Rethinking the JSPC.
The meeting was adjourned at 3:30 p.m.
Sheila Black Grubman