1. The meeting was called to order at 3:08 p.m. on Wednesday, October 19, 2011 in the President's Conference Room in Green Hall, Chairperson Eaton presiding. All members were present.
a. Chairperson Eaton noted that there had been a posting for the Fall Research Seminar Series and that Intellectual Property was on the schedule for November 18. Chairperson Eaton agreed to ask Vice President Alfonso whether the proposed new IP policy would be discussed at that time.
b. The FSEC discussed a draft vision statement for a permanent Joint Committee on Online and Distance Learning, which had been forwarded to them by Vice Provost Beauvais. They noted that the draft, which had been proposed by the Ad Hoc Committee, reflected many of the issues that Provost DeHayes talked to them about at their October 12 meeting with him.
c. Chairperson Eaton reported that the position of Specialist, Faculty Senate Office had not been advertised because the salary range seemed too low for the qualifications for and responsibilities of the position. She said that she planned to discuss this with Vice Provost Katz before agreeing to move forward with the search.
3. The Executive Committee reviewed the Agenda for Faculty Senate Meeting #2, October 20, 2011 in preparation for the next day's meeting.
4. The Executive Committee met with President Dooley from 3:30 p.m. to 4:50 p.m. The following matters were considered:
a. Pension Reform: President Dooley reported that he had attended a public forum on pension reform sponsored by the Providence Chamber of Commerce. He said that that Governor Chafee and State Treasurer Raimondo had been very articulate in their explanations of the reasons reform was necessary. He said that the three Presidents in the public system of Higher Education had drafted a letter in support of reform, which was to appear in the Providence Journal. President Dooley said that it would be significant nationally if Rhode Island was able to lead in a fair and equitable reform of public pensions.
b. Status of the industrial park feasibility study: In response to the Executive Committee's question, President Dooley said that the Research Foundation expected to receive the consultant's report in early November. He said that the consultants had not shared the results of their research and everything was in abeyance pending the report.
President Dooley and the FSEC discussed the possibility effect additional railroad connections closer to the University might have on the feasibility of an industrial park.
c. A Knowledge District, including a Nursing building: The Executive Committee asked President Dooley about the progress toward creating a Nursing Building in Providence. He said that the current plan was to put a Nursing Building on the 2012 Bond Issue, although a private partner might move the project along faster. He informed the FSEC that that some improvements to laboratories at the Bay Campus were also under consideration.
The President noted that the University was thinking seriously about renovating buildings on the Quad (including Roosevelt Hall) and in the Engineering complex. and Fogarty Hall, without increasing the campus footprint substantially. It isn't clear what would be the best solution with regard to Pastore and Fogarty once the Chemistry Building is underway. He said that hopefully, the idea of protecting their investment would resonate with R. I. legislators and citizens.
The possibility of having an outside developer build a parking garage was also discussed. President Dooley explained how this might be done without requiring all staff to pay to park on campus.
d. The role of the Faculty Senate: President Dooley said that he considers the faculty one body represented by two important organizations, The Faculty Senate and the URI AAUP.
There was some discussion about the UNIVERSITY MANUAL and the enforcement of rules and regulations approved by the Faculty Senate.
After President Dooley left the meeting, Chairperson Eaton asked the Executive Committee if there were any items on the Agenda they wanted to consider.
5. The Executive Committee agreed to invite Professor Kinnie and Dean Ciccomascolo to a subsequent meeting to learn more about the survey of the faculty about the IDEA SRI instrument.
6. Senator Barbour said that she, Vice Provost Beauvais and Ms. Grubman had not met about refining the new program review process since the spring. She suggested that it was time for the group to meet and draft a new process that could be adopted during the current academic year.
7. Senator Honhart reported that he had learned since the last FSEC Meeting that the Ad Hoc Committee on Advising was still in the process of drafting recommendations.
The meeting was adjourned at 5:00 p.m.
Sheila Black Grubman