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Scenes from Faculty Senate

Minutes for Faculty Senate Meetings

May 10, 2007

Number 8

1. Regular meeting of the Faculty Senate was called to order at 3:03 p.m. in the Cherry Auditorium, Chester Kirk Building, Chairperson Rice presiding.

All members were present except Senators Babson, Betensky, Cairns, Cunnigen, Fastovsky, Grigalunas, Hara, Kook, Lasky, Martin, Rothstein, Roworth, Schwegler, Sun and Taggart. Vice Presidents Beagle, Dougan and Weygand; Deans Farmer, Joseph, Letendre, Maslyn and Richmond (Vice Provost McCray and Deans Higgins and Seemann were represented by their designees); Mr. Freeman; Mr. Leston.

2. Chairperson Rice asked if there were any additions or corrections to or questions about the Minutes of Faculty Senate Meeting #7, April 19, 2007. There were none.

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

3. REPORTS OF OFFICERS AND EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

A. Announcements:

  1. Chairperson Rice announced that this was the first meeting of the 2007-08 Faculty Senate and the last scheduled meeting of this academic year. He welcomed all of the new Senators who were taking their seats at that time. He explained that several new Senators had informed the Senate Office that they could not attend the meeting because of obligations made prior to their election; however, they assured Ms. Grubman that they would attend meetings in 2007-08.

    Following is the list of new Senators introduced by Chairperson Rice:

    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

    ENGINEERING
    Fred Vetter

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

    HUMAN SCIENCE & SERVICES
    Bryan Blissmer
    Karen McCurdy
    Margaret Ordonez

    NURSING
    Karen Caines
    Barbara O'Brien

    PHARMACY
    Tamar Lasky
    Brian Quilliam

    UNIVERSITY LIBRARIES
    Amanda Izenstark

  2. Chairperson Rice also welcomed Vice Provost Garret Bozylinsky who was a new ex officio member of the Faculty Senate as a result of the recent referendum.

  3. Chairperson Rice announced that Professor Ruby Dholakia and Director of Communications Linda Acciardo asked that he inform the Senate that there will be a web-based survey of the faculty and staff about the URI Branding Initiative. He said that the survey would be out within the following week and they request that faculty and staff take the time to complete the survey when it arrives.

  4. Chairperson Rice said that his two years as Chair of the Faculty Senate had been a wonderful experience for him. He thanked each of the members of the Executive Committee, Vice Chairperson Barbara Luebke and Senators Marilyn Barbour, Jim Kinnie, Jim Kowalski and Jim Miller for their advice and support. He also expressed his appreciation to President Carothers and Provost Swan, as well as to Ms. Black Grubman and Ms. DeFosse in the Faculty Senate Office.

  5. Chairperson Rice announced that President Carothers had graciously agreed to sponsor the Faculty Senate's reception that afternoon. He thanked President Carothers on behalf of the Executive Committee and invited everyone to attend the reception at the University Club after the Faculty Senate meeting.

  6. Chairperson Rice reminded the Senate that the meeting could not go beyond the 5:00 p.m. adjournment time and that there was a very long Agenda that afternoon. He encouraged everyone to keep the time in mind and to be brief in discussion in order to expedite business. Chairperson Rice said that the business shouldn't be delayed until the fall and stated that if the Senate hasn't completed the Agenda by 4:59, he would entertain a motion to recess and then reconvene at 5:01 to complete the Agenda that afternoon.

B. Vice Chairperson Luebke said that the Minutes of Executive Committee Meetings #26, #27 and #28 appeared on pages 5-12 of the Agenda and asked if there were any questions.

During discussion, President Carothers, Provost Swan, Chairperson Rice and Vice Chairperson Luebke responded to questions about the Executive Committee Minutes.

Vice Chairperson Luebke announced that rather than ask the Faculty Senate to approve resolutions, the Executive Committee had adopted the following resolution thanking the members of the Faculty Senate:

Resolution of Thanks
From 2006-2007 Faculty Senate Executive Committee
Chair Michael Rice, Vice-Chair Barbara Luebke
Marilyn Barbour, James Kinnie, James Kowalski, James Miller

WHEREAS we have over the last year met weekly for a total of more than 100 hours; and

WHEREAS we have together considered and debated issues big and small on behalf of the University of Rhode Island faculty; and

WHEREAS we have met regularly with University administrators to share our concerns and opinions, and to offer advice (solicited and not); and

WHEREAS we have strived earnestly to staff our all-important Committees of the Senate and other University Committees with the best and most dedicated members of the faculty community; and

WHEREAS we have together drafted, crafted, edited and presented recommendations, committee reports and legislation for consideration by the Senate; and

WHEREAS in the course of our work we have laughed perhaps more than any other Faculty Senate Executive Committee; be it

RESOLVED that the 2006-2007 Faculty Senate Executive Committee reaffirms its belief in the importance of shared governance and the Faculty Senate's role in the life of the University; and be it

FURTHER RESOLVED that the 2006-2007 Faculty Senate Executive Committee urges all members of the faculty to be actively involved in the work of the Senate and its committees; and be it

FURTHER RESOLVED that the 2006-2007 Faculty Senate Executive Committee urges the new Senate to remain attentive to the needs of the faculty and vigilant in protecting its rights; and be it

FURTHER RESOLVED that the 2006-2007 Faculty Senate Executive Committee urges the new Executive Committee to continue the work begun this year while charting its own course; and be it

FINALLY RESOLVED that the 2006-2007 Faculty Senate Executive Committee offers its profound gratitude to the Senate for the privilege of leading it during the past academic year.

C. Professor Welters, Chair of the Nominating Committee, noted that the Report of the Nominating Committee appeared on page 13 of the Agenda. She then placed the name of Senator James Miller in nomination for Chairperson of the Faculty Senate for the 2007-08 academic year.

Discussion ensued.

Following discussion, Professor Welters asked if there were any nominations from the floor. There were none.

Nominations were closed.

Senator R. Lee moved that the Nominating Committee be directed to cast the ballots of the Senators for James Miller. The motion carried. There were three abstentions recorded.

Professor Welters placed the name of Senator Celest Martin in nomination for Vice Chairperson of the Faculty Senate for the 2007-08 academic year.

Discussion ensued.

Following discussion, Professor Welters asked if there were any nominations from the floor. There were none.

Nominations were closed.

Senator R. Lee moved that the Nominating Committee be directed to cast the ballots of the Senators for Celest Martin. The motion carried. There were three abstentions recorded.

Professor Welters placed the name of Senator Barbara Costello in nomination for the two-year term on the Executive Committee.

Professor Welters asked if there were any nominations from the floor. There were none.

Nominations were closed.

Senator R. Lee moved that the Nominating Committee be directed to cast the ballots of the Senators for Barbara Costello. The motion carried. There were three abstentions recorded.

Professor Welters placed the names Senator Laura Beauvais, Senator David Fastovsky and Senator Dana Kovarsky in nomination for the three one-year terms on the 2007-08 Executive Committee.

Discussion ensued.

Following discussion, Senator Welters asked if there were any nominations from the floor. There were none.

Nominations were closed.

Senator R. Lee moved that the Nominating Committee be directed to cast the ballots of the Senators for the three nominees. The motion carried. There were four abstentions recorded.

Following are the members of the 2007-08 Faculty Senate Executive Committee:

  • James Miller, OCE, College of Engineering, Chairperson
  • Celest Martin, WRT, College of Arts and Sciences, Vice Chairperson
  • Laura Beauvais, College of Business Administration (2nd year of 2-year term)
  • Barbara Costello, SOC, College of Arts and Sciences (1st year of 2-year term)
  • David Fastovsky, GEO, College of the Environment and Life Sciences (2nd year of 2-year term)
  • Dana Kovarsky, CMD, College of Human Science and Services (1 year term)

Senator Kirschenbaum moved that the actions of the 2006-07 and 2007-08 Executive Committees be declared legitimate.

Chairperson Rice ruled the motion out of order.

D. Recommendations of the Executive Committee

  1. Vice Chairperson Luebke moved that the Faculty Senate appoint Professor Donna Meyer and Professor James Miller to the Search Committee for the Dean of the College of Engineering.

    The motion carried.

  2. Vice Chairperson Luebke moved that the Faculty Senate appoint Professor Laura Beauvais, Professor Stephan Grilli, Professor Celest Martin and Professor Michael Rice to the Academic Program Review Committee (APRC).

    Discussion ensued.

    Following discussion, Senator Sodhi moved that the appointments to the APRC be postponed until the fall.

    After discussion, the motion failed 13-18.

    Following discussion, the main motion carried.

  3. Senator Miller moved that the Faculty Senate appoint Professor Arijit Bose and Professor Barbara Luebke to the Search Committee for the Provost.

    Discussion ensued.

    Following discussion, Senator Lee moved to terminate debate. The motion carried.

    The Senate voted immediately on the main motion. The motion carried. There were two abstentions recorded.

E. On behalf of President Carothers and himself, Chairperson Rice gave an oral report to the Senate on the activities of the Joint Strategic Planning Committee for the 2006-07 academic year. He asked if there were any questions. There were none. [The text of the report is available on the web at http://www.uri.edu/facsen/06-07_JSPC_Report.pdf]

F. Senator Kowalski reported on the progress of the University's NEASC Accreditation Self-Study. He said that the majority of drafts were available for review on the web and demonstrated how the drafts could be downloaded. He encouraged everyone to review the materials and to raise questions and provide comments, suggestions and clarifications to Dean Beckman or himself.

He announced that the first open forum on the NEASC Self-Study drafts had been held just prior to that afternoon's Faculty Senate and that two forums were scheduled for Friday May 11 at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. in the Large Conference Room on the second floor of Green Hall. He indicated that additional open forums would be scheduled for June after more people have had the opportunity to review the drafts.

4. REPORT OF THE PRESIDENT

A. President Carothers said that he had approved all of the legislation that had been forwarded to him after the April Faculty Senate Meeting but only Bill #06-07--32 had been approved early enough to meet the Agenda publication deadline.

B. President Carothers welcomed the newly elected Senators. He said that the work of the Faculty Senate is critical to the University and he appreciated their willingness to serve.

The President thanked Chairperson Rice and each of the members of the Executive Committee individually and said that he would miss working with them. He said that he looked forward to getting to know and to work with the members of the new Executive Committee during the coming year. President Carothers reminded everyone that Commencement weekend was coming up on May 19-20 and urged faculty to attend and to encourage their colleagues to attend as well.

President Carothers reported that Professor James Prochaska had been appointed chair of the Provost Search Committee. He said that it was vital for URI to find outstanding candidates and encouraged faculty to contact their colleagues outside the University to suggest nominees for the position.

The President announced that he was pleased to report that the Admissions Office had been able to meet their goals and that the new freshman class was more diverse and international than in previous years. He expressed his appreciation to Dean Bonn and her staff, along with all of the faculty and administrators who participated in the recruitment efforts.

President Carothers then responded to questions about the University's and the State's budget in light of Rhode Island's financial difficulties.

5. REPORTS OF STANDING AND SPECIAL COMMITTEES

A. Vice Chairperson Luebke presented the Four Hundred Fifty-Second Report of the Curricular Affairs Committee, which appeared on pages 14-28 of the Agenda. She explained that subsequent to the publication of the report a number of editorial corrections had been made.

Vice Chairperson Luebke noted that Section I was informational. There were no questions.

Vice Chairperson Luebke said that Section II required confirmation by the Faculty Senate and moved approval. 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. 2006-2007-5A from the Graduate Council to the Faculty Senate: Proposal for a Graduate Certificate in Women's Studies, which appeared on pages 29-33 of the Agenda. He moved approval of the post-graduate certificate in Women's Studies. The motion carried.

C. Dean Bibb presented Curricular Report No. 2006-07-7A: Proposal for a dual Diplom/Master of Science program with the Technische Universität Braunschweig, which appeared on page 24 of the Agenda, and moved approval. The motion carried.

D. Dean Bibb presented the Curricular Report No. 2006-07-8 from the Graduate Council to the Faculty Senate, which appeared on pages 35-37 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.

E. Dean Beckman introduced the Report of the Council for Research on the Establishment of the URI Transportation Center, which appeared on pages 38-41 of the Agenda and moved approval.

Discussion ensued.

Following discussion, the motion carried.

F. Professor Carson presented the Report of the Library Committee for 2006-07, which appeared on pages 42-43 of the Agenda.

Discussion ensued.

Following discussion, Senator Rathemacher requested that the materials on Serials, which she had presented in May 2006 be forwarded to the 2007-08 Library Committee.

Chairperson Rice agreed to do so.

G. In the absence of Senator Martin, Chair of the Committee, Senator Quina and Interim Associate Dean of the Feinstein College of Continuing Education presented the Report of the Providence Campus Initiative Committee, which appeared on pages 44-47 of the Agenda.

After discussion, Senator Quina moved that the Faculty Senate approve the following provisional pilot program for the admission of traditional students to the Feinstein Providence Campus:

A provisional (pilot) program for three years, beginning in the Fall of 2008, to admit freshmen directly from high school to URI, with the intention of enrolling in courses at the Feinstein Providence campus. The program would be expanded from the currently approved three majors (Communication Studies, Human Development and Family Studies, Psychology) to include undecided students, as well as students who hope to enter a major for which they can complete the first two years of coursework on the Feinstein Providence campus), with the understanding that many of these students will have to transfer to the URI Kingston campus to complete their degree.

Discussion ensued.

Following discussion the motion carried.

H. Vice Chairperson Luebke presented the Report of the Ad Hoc Committee on Early Course Registration, which appeared on pages 48-50 of the Agenda.

Vice Chairperson Luebke then moved that the provisions in the Ad Hoc Committee's earlier report be made permanent and added to the University Manual.

The motion carried.

I. Professor Kinnie introduced the Report of the Ad Hoc Committee on Sections 8.87.10-11 of the University Manual, which appeared on page 51 of the Agenda and moved approval of the proposed new section 8.87.12:

8.87.12 Suspension of Programs. The President has the prerogative of suspending admissions of students into degree granting programs. The President shall notify the University Community, including Admissions Officers, and the Board of Governors for Higher Education as to the reasons for and the effective date of program suspension, taking into account students already admitted for study. In concert with policies of the Board of Governors for Higher Education, programs may be maintained in a state of suspension for a maximum of 6 years. Programs may be removed from suspension by the President at any time prior to the expiration of the time limit. The President may appeal to the Board of Governors for Higher Education for a three (3) year extension beyond the prescribed time limit. After the time limit for program suspension has been reached, procedures for program abolition set forth in Section 8.87.10 shall be followed.

Discussion ensued. Following discussion, the motion carried.

J. Senator Rosen reported orally on the activities of the Ad Hoc Committee on Administrator Evaluation and responded to questions from the floor. [The text of the report is available on the web at http://www.uri.edu/facsen/AdHocAEC06-07.pdf]

6. UNFINISHED BUSINESS

A. Chairperson Rice announced that a motion to approve the following amendment to section 8.2 of the By-Laws of the Faculty Senate was made on April 19 and was now returned to the Faculty Senate for action (deletions are indicated by strikethrough; additions are bold italics).

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, the motion carried.

The amended section 8.2 of the By-Laws reads as follows:

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.
  • At the end of the referendum period the ballots shall be counted and the results certified to the President of the University and to the Chairperson of the Senate.

B. Chairperson Rice announced that the following resolution moved on April 19 and postponed definitely until the May meeting. He said that the resolution was returned to the floor at that time:

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 Miller moved to postpone indefinitely consideration of the resolution.

Discussion ensued. Following discussion, the motion to postpone indefinitely carried.

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

7. NEW BUSINESS

Chairperson Rice asked if there was any new business.

Senator Rosen requested that the issue of final examination scheduling be referred to the Academic Standards and Calendar Committee.

Chairperson Rice indicated that the Executive Committee had agreed to do so.

Senator Leo requested that the issue of future strategic positioning of the University as raised by Professor Logan be considered by the Senate.

Chairperson Rice noted that the charge to the Joint Blue Ribbon Commission on the Future of the University includes an examination of intramural and extramural trends that may affect the future of the University [See http://www.uri.edu/facsen/Joint_Recommendation_Blue.pdf]. He suggested that this might be a matter that the 07-08 Executive Committee would want to consider.

A motion was made to adjourn. The motion carried.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:58 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Sheila Black Grubman

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Michael W. Honhart, Professor of History 2014 Recipient of the Sheila Black Grubman Faculty Outstanding Service Award

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