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Scenes from Faculty Senate

Minutes for Faculty Senate Meetings

April 19, 2007

Number 7

1. Immediately following a meeting of the General Faculty-Graduate Faculty, the regular meeting of the Faculty Senate was called to order at 3:05 p.m. in the Cherry Auditorium, Chester Kirk Building, Chairperson Rice presiding.

All members were present except Senators Echevarria, Forrester, Kirschenbaum, Rothstein, Sun, Suzawa and Welters; Vice Presidents Beagle, Dougan and Weygand; Vice Provosts McCray and Pasquerella; Deans Farmer, Letendre, Maslyn, McKinney and Richmond (Dean Seemann was represented by his designee); Mr. Freeman.

2. Chairperson Rice asked if there were any additions or corrections to or questions about the Minutes of Faculty Senate Meeting #6, March 29, 2007. There were none.

Chairperson Rice ruled that in the absence of additions or corrections, the Minutes were approved as distributed.

Chairperson Rice asked the Senate to pause for a moment of silence in memory of the Virginia Tech students and faculty who were killed on April 16 and the two URI students, Tiffany DeSisto and Marissa Salabert, who had died from injuries suffered in a car accident last month.

3. REPORTS OF OFFICERS AND EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

A. Announcements:

  1. Chairperson Rice announced that it was the last regular meeting of the 2006-07 Faculty Senate. He asked the Senate to join him in thanking the following Senators whose terms expire at the end of April and who are not eligible for election to the 2007-08 Faculty Senate:

    ARTS & SCIENCES
    C. Herbert Carson
    Nancy Eaton
    James Kowalski
    Michelangelo La Luna
    Barbara Luebke
    Surendra Malik
    Glen Ramsay
    Sharon Strom
    Gilbert Suzawa

    BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION
    Ruby Dholakia
    John Dunn

    ENGINEERING
    Leland Jackson

    ENVIRONMENT & LIFE SCIENCES
    Michael Rice

    HUMAN SCIENCE & SERVICES
    Tom Manfredi
    Linda Welters

    NURSING
    Laurie Luzon Clabo

    PHARMACY
    Marilyn Barbour
    K. Parang

    UNIVERSITY LIBRARIES
    Jim Kinnie

    Chairperson Rice also thanked Senators Kristine Bovy, Frank Heppner and Harry Knickle whose terms also expire in April.

  2. Chairperson Rice said that the organizational meeting of the 2007-08 Faculty Senate will be held on Thursday, May 10. One-third of the Senate will be comprised of newly elected Senators who will take their seats and participate in the election of Senate Officers for 2007-08. He explained that while not all of the college elections have been completed, he would like to announce the names of those Senators who will take their seats in May:

    ARTS & SCIENCES
    Gerard Baudet
    Barbara Costello
    Ann Danis
    Rachel Dicioccio
    Norbert Hedderich
    Ron Hutt
    Charles Kaufman
    Celest Martin
    Wendy Roworth (re-elected)
    Robert Schwegler

    BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION
    Nik Dholakia
    Yul Lee

    ENVIRONMENT & LIFE SCIENCES
    William Gordon
    Gabriele Kass-Simon
    Lawrence Juda
    Bridget Ruemmele (re-elected)

    PHARMACY
    Tamar Lasky
    Brian Quilliam

  3. Chairperson Rice reminded the Senate that the Executive Committee was in the process of conducting a referendum of the general faculty. He urged Senators who had not already returned ballots to do so by next Wednesday, April 25.

  4. On behalf ofthe Faculty Senate Executive Committee, Chairperson Rice expressed their appreciation to Provost M. Beverly Swan, who came to the Faculty Senate Executive Committee's rescue and sponsored the reception after the March 29 Faculty Senate Meeting.

  5. Chairperson Rice announced that Dean David Maslyn of the University Libraries had graciously agreed to sponsor the reception that afternoon. He thanked Dean Maslyn and invited everyone to the University Club after the Faculty Senate meeting.

B. Vice Chairperson Luebke said that the Minutes of Executive Committee Meetings #24 and #25 appeared on pages 4-11 of the Agenda and asked if there were any questions. There were none.

C. Vice Chairperson Luebke said that the Minutes of the January 23 and February 15 meetings of the JSPC appeared on pages 12-14 of the Agenda and asked if there were any questions. There were none.

D. Recommendations of the Executive Committee

  1. Vice Chairperson Luebke moved approval of the calendar for Faculty Senate Meetings for 2007-08. The motion carried.

    Following is the schedule of Faculty Senate Meetings for 2007-08:
    3:00 p.m. on the following Thursdays in the Cherry Auditorium of the Chester H. Kirk Building:

    • September 27, 2007*
    • October 25, 2007
    • November 15, 2007
    • December 13, 2007*
    • January 31, 2008
    • February 21, 2008
    • March 27, 2008
    • April 24, 2008*
    • May 15, 2008 (organizational)

    Special Meetings may be called upon due notice.
    *Will immediately follow General Faculty-Graduate Faculty Meeting

  2. Vice Chairperson Luebke moved that the Faculty Senate approve the following membership of the Nominating Committee for officers of the 2007-08 Faculty Senate:

    • James Kowalski, College of Arts and Sciences
    • Laurie Lauzon Clabo, College of Nursing
    • Linda Welters, College of Human Science and Services

    Discussion ensued.
    Following discussion, the motion carried.

  3. Vice Chairperson Luebke moved that the Faculty Senate approve the following revised recommendation to amend section 8.2 of the Faculty Senate By-Laws. She noted that the Senate could not vote upon a By-Laws change at the meeting at which it is first moved.

    8.2 Secret mail ballots of the General Faculty shall be conducted either to ratify amendments to the Senate Constitution or to recall Senate actions.

    They shall be conducted as follows:

    The Secretary of the Senate shall distribute a ballot to every eligible member of the faculty following a procedure adopted by the Faculty Senate. Mail shall include electronic mail.

    Two envelopes shall be distributed with the ballot. One envelope shall bear the word BALLOT, and will be used by the faculty member to enclose and seal his/her ballot. The second envelope shall be used as an outer mailing envelope. In order for a ballot to be valid, it must (1) be returned in the two envelopes as outlined above with the outer envelope signed, and (2) be received by the Secretary of the Senate within 15 days after the date on which the ballots were mailed to the faculty by the Secretary of the Senate, except that faculty members absent on official business may record their vote by telegram or radio-telegram addressed to the Secretary of the Senate, in which case the ballot will not be secret, but it must be recorded within the time limit. The tellers will validate the eligibility of the voter by the outer signed envelope, and then separate inner sealed envelopes from the outer envelope so that the inner envelopes can no longer be identified with the individual voters before opening the inner envelopes and counting the ballots.

    The outer envelopes shall be retained separately until the outcome of the referendum shall have been decided.The names of those faculty members who have returned ballots as identified by the signatures on the outer envelopes shall be made available to any interested party during the 15-day voting period. At the end of the 15-day referendum period the ballots shall be counted and the results certified to the President of the University and to the Chairperson of the Senate.

    Discussion ensued.

    Following discussion, Chairperson Rice announced that the By-Laws change would be included on the Agenda for the May 10 Faculty Senate Meeting.

E. Senator Kowalski reported on the progress of the University's NEASC Accreditation Self-Study. He said that the accreditation visit is scheduled for October 24, 2007 and announced that the Chair of the NEASC Accreditation Team for URI is Dr. Sherry Penney from the University of Massachusetts, Boston.

Senator Kowalski explained that drafts of some of the sections were now available on the web and said that within a few days, the website address would be forwarded to all members of the Faculty Senate. He provided the Senate with the user name and password for accessing the drafts and encouraged everyone to read them and forward comments and suggestions to Dean Beckman or himself.

4. REPORT OF THE PRESIDENT

A. President Carothers said, as indicated on the Agenda, that he had approved all of the legislation that had been forwarded to him after the March Faculty Senate Meeting.

B. President Carothers said that URI has emergency plans for dealing with natural disasters, epidemics and terrorist attacks and reviews them periodically. He reported that as a result of the recent events at Virginia Tech the University was examining the emergency plans with fresh eyes. He expressed concern about the difficulty of contacting all students over a short period of time.

The President noted that another result of the Virginia Tech Massacre was that people of Asian descent were being victimized at other institutions. He urged that faculty members be aware of this potential situation and act immediately if they have reason to believe it was occurring at URI.

President Carothers reported briefly on the controversy between the Student Senate and the College Republicans and said that he hoped the matter would be resolved soon.

The President gave an update on the progress of the Capital Campaign and said that he hoped that when the campaign has its official kick-off, the University would have sixty or seventy million dollars committed to it.

President Carothers expressed his appreciation to Provost Beverly Swan, who had recently announced that she was resigning as of December 31, 2007. He said that Provost Swan would return to the faculty as the Justin Morrill University Distinguished Professor in January 2008. President Carothers said that Provost Swan would continue to guide the University through the NEASC Accreditation and the follow-up.

President Carothers said that he had just attended the memorial service for the two URI students who died as a result of the car accident. He noted that the loss was felt by the family, friends and members of the URI Community and urged that everyone continue in their efforts to help students make the right choices.

President Carothers asked if there were any questions about his report.

Senator Miller moved approval of the following resolution:

WHEREAS:

The mission of the University of Rhode Island states, in part, that students, faculty, staff and alumni are united in one common purpose: to learn and lead together. Along with embracing Rhode Island's heritage of independent thought, URI values

  • Creativity and Scholarship
  • Diversity, Fairness and Respect
  • Engaged Learning and Civic Involvement
  • Intellectual and Ethical Leadership

THEREFORE

BE IT RESOLVED that the URI Faculty Senate encourages an open and respectful learning environment that cherishes and values free speech.

Senator Leo requested and received permission to postpone consideration of the resolution until after members of the Senate had the opportunity to ask questions of the President.

Discussion ensued.

After discussion, the Senate returned to the resolution on the floor.

Discussion ensued.

Following discussion, Senator Strom moved to postpone definitely consideration of the resolution until the next meeting of the Faculty Senate.

Following discussion, the motion to postpone definitely carried.

5. REPORTS OF STANDING AND SPECIAL COMMITTEES

Dean Bonn requested and received permission to change the order of business and move to item G, the Report of the Admissions Advisory Committee.

G. Professor Karen Ramsay presented the Report of the Admissions Advisory Committee, which appeared on pages 50-53 of the Agenda. She asked if there were any questions. There were none.

The Senate resumed its regular order of business and moved to item A, the Four Hundred Fifty-First Report of the Curricular Affairs Committee.

A. Vice Chairperson Luebke presented the Four Hundred Fifty-First Report of the Curricular Affairs Committee, which appeared on pages 18-24 of the Agenda and said that Section I was informational.

Discussion ensued on Section I.

Following discussion, Senator Leo moved to refer item D in Section I back to committee.

Discussion ensued on the motion to refer to committee.

After discussion, the motion failed.

Vice Chairperson Luebke said that Section II required confirmation by the Faculty Senate, she made an editorial correction and moved approval of Section II. The motion carried.

Vice Chairperson Luebke announced that Section III was a joint report of the Curricular Affairs Committee and Graduate Council on 400-level courses. She said that part A was informational. There were no questions,

Vice Chairperson Luebke said that part B of Section III required confirmation by the Faculty Senate and moved approval of Section II. The motion carried.

B. Dean Bibb presented Curricular Report No. 2006-2007-6 from the Graduate Council to the Faculty Senate, which appeared on pages 25-37 of the Agenda. He said that Section I was informational. There were no questions.

Dean Bibb said that Section II required confirmation by the Faculty Senate and moved approval. The motion carried.

C. Dean Bibb presented Curricular Report No. 2006-2007-7 from the Graduate Council to the Faculty Senate, which appeared on page 38-40 of the Agenda. He said that Section I was informational. There were no questions.

Dean Bibb said that Section II required confirmation by the Faculty Senate and moved approval. The motion carried.

D. Senator Honhart introduced the University College and General Education Committee Report #2006-07-4, which appeared on page 41 of the Agenda. Professor Honhart corrected the report editorially and moved approval. The motion carried.

E. Senator Beauvais introduced the Academic Standards and Calendar Committee Report #2006-07-3, which appeared on pages 42-45 of the Agenda. She said that Section I was informational. There were no questions.

Senator Beauvais said that Section II required Senate action and moved approval of Section II, items A, B, C, and D.

Discussion ensued.

Following discussion, Senator Rosen moved to separate recommendation A from recommendations B, C, and D. The motion carried.

Discussion ensued on recommendations B, C, and D.

Following discussion, Senator Honhart moved to amend recommendations C and D by stating that they become effective in the fall semester 2007. The motion carried.

The main motion as amended carried.

Discussion resumed on recommendation A.

Following discussion, the motion carried.

F. Professor Lucht presented the Annual Report of the Council for Research for 2006-07, which appeared on pages 46-49 of the Agenda. He asked if there were any questions. There were none.

H. Vice Chairperson Luebke reported on the activities of the Athletics Advisory Board for 2007-08 and responded to questions. A written copy of Vice Chairperson Luebke's report is available on the web at http://www.uri.edu/facsen/AAB_Report_to_FS_4-19-07.pdf

6. UNFINISHED BUSINESS

Chairperson Rice asked if there was any unfinished business. There was none.

7. NEW BUSINESS

Chairperson Rice asked if there was any new business. There was none

A motion was made to adjourn. The motion carried.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:12 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Sheila Black Grubman