1. The regular meeting was called to order at 10:10 a.m. on Monday, April 15, 2013 a.m. in the Dorothy Vocino Conference Room in the URI Library, Chairperson Larsen presiding. All members were present except Senator Nassersharif.
2. The Minutes of Executive Committee Meetings #24, February 11, 2013 and #33, April 8, 2013 were approved as amended.
3. The Executive Committee discussed the Agenda for Faculty Senate Meeting #8, April 18, 2013:
a. The Executive Committee agreed that Senator Davis would move to amend the first paragraph in the Report of the Graduate Council on graduate faculty status by inserting "generally" as follows:
The Graduate Faculty at the University of Rhode Island shall generally be adjunct, tenure-track, or emeritus members of the faculty who have a) earned the highest degree...
b. Ms. Grubman reported that Dr. Goldsmith had asked that the Forum precede her committee's report. The FSEC agreed it would be possible to change the order of business and return to item 5, g, after item 6.
c. It was noted that the two items of unfinished business should be considered before the meeting adjourns. Chairperson Larsen said that he would keep the forum from going beyond 4:30 to allow time for the remaining business to be accomplished.
d. The Executive Committee also discussed whether it would be possible for someone to introduce new business. They agreed it was highly unlikely that the Senate would reach new business on the Agenda, especially because the meeting would be shortened by the time taken up by the meeting of the General Faculty-Graduate Faculty. Ms. Grubman was asked to inform the Senate about the limitation of time.
With regard to the General Faculty-Graduate Faculty Agenda, the FSEC asked Ms. Grubman to put a sentence under new business on the Agenda to clarify the Executive Committee's intention of raising issues related to the Graduate Council and Honorary Degrees Committee.
a. The FSEC discussed a proposal from the Council for Research that would provide for the election of the Council's chair in the spring rather than the fall but still have its chair elected from the membership. This was in contrast to the FSEC's suggestion that the Chair of the Council for Research be appointed in the same manner as other Faculty Senate Committees.
It was agreed that since neither proposal could be implemented this year because a By-Laws change is required, the FSEC would encourage the current chair of the Council for Research to continue through the summer and suggest that the FSEC be consulted about the Council's election of its chair this fall. It was further agreed to request a rationale from the Council for Research for selecting the Council's chair rather that having the chair appointed by the Executive Committee in the same manner as all other standing committees of the Faculty Senate. Then the discussion of amending the Faculty Senate By-Laws could then be postponed until fall 2013.
b. Vice Chairperson Byrd reported on the Board of Education Meeting of April 8 at Rhode Island College. He said that the period of time for public comment had been cut short because of the length of the Agenda and some people who planned to speak were not allowed to do so. He did note that URI's proposals had been approved, including the establishment of the 5-Year Masters in Oceanography degree and the Intellectual Property Policy. In addition, the President informed the Board of the Post BS Entry to Doctor of Nursing Practice, M.S. In Nursing, Adult-Gerontological Nurse Practitioner/Clinical Nurse Specialist Area and the Graduate Certificate in Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing (GIS/RS).
5. Provost De Hayes and Vice Provost Beauvais joined the Executive Committee at 11:10 a.m. The following matters were discussed:
a. Administrator Evaluation: Chairperson Larsen said that largely due to the efforts of Senator Nassersharif, all of the evaluation committees had started their work. Provost DeHayes said that he had drafted an evaluation instrument similar to the one prepared by Senator Nassersharif but with some modifications for the external groups that he intended to survey, including members of the Council of Deans and the President's team, except for President Dooley.
Provost DeHayes and the Executive Committee said they were optimistic that the new procedure would produce larger participation than in prior years. In response to a question from Senator Barbour, Provost DeHayes said that he planned to meet with the respective college faculties after all of the evaluations have been conducted in order that faculty knew their input had been received.
Provost DeHayes said he hoped that providing feedback would make it less difficult to form the committees and said he did not believe that using volunteers was the best process for assembling the evaluation committees.
b. Summer compensation for faculty: The Executive Committee asked Provost DeHayes about stipends for 9-month faculty who work on committee projects during the summer. Provost De Hayes explained that in 2010 he had set up a pay scale for faculty summer work. He said the compensation is $300.00/day for a full day of meetings/work and $150 for a half day of meetings and committee work. He said that the stipends also depended on the work work required outside the meetings.
The FSEC noted that the new Undergraduate Advising Committee and the Library committee under the new charge regarding open access would probably need to meet. Senator Barbour noted that some members of LOOC would have to meet in June when a number of department assessment materials were due.
The Executive Committee and Provost DeHayes considered whether the University College and General Education Committee would be able to bring a proposal forward in the spring or whether additional work would be needed during the summer in order to have a plan to present to the Faculty Senate in the fall.
Chairperson Larsen agreed to urge the UCGE Committee to work during the summer and be prepared to bring their proposal to the Faculty Senate early in the fall.
Provost De Hayes reported that he had attended a meeting with the Rhode Island federal legislative delegation and that a significant concern had been the value of higher education as an investment. He said that it was important that the general education program reflect the changing needs of society and hoped the new general education program would be ready for fall 2014 implementation.
c. Focused Program Review: The Executive Committee and the Provost decided that the latest draft on focused program review was ready for distribution to the President and the Deans for review and suggestions. When forwarding the proposed legislation, the FSEC said they would explain that the intention of the proposal was to have a process available when needed for future guidance and was expected to be used infrequently.
d. Governance structure for Graduate Council and Honorary Degrees Committee: The FSEC informed Provost DeHayes that they had been considering whether the Graduate Council and the Honorary Degrees Committee should be brought into the regular committee structure.
Provost DeHayes said he hoped that once the issue of graduate faculty status was clarified, the Graduate Faculty would begin to meet more regularly and take a more active role in developing policy for graduate education. He said this would not necessarily be affected by the possibility of making the Graduate Council a standing Committee of the Faculty Senate.
e. Dealing with Potential Crisis Situations on Campus: The Provost and Executive Committee discussed the events of the previous week and agreed it was important that everyone be aware of guidelines if such an event occurs again. The Provost said that the University would conduct a post-incident assessment to find out what can be done better if one should occur again.
Provost DeHayes suggested that there might be a tutorial or video available for faculty and staff to help everyone understand what should be done in a crisis. He suggested that having lived through the experience, members of the community would be more willing to participate in some type of training than they had previously. He said he intended to devote the time at an upcoming Department Chairs' Forum to a discussion/training on crisis response.
Vice Provost Beauvais said that for the most part these issues had been the concern of campus security and Student Affairs, but it was important to have faculty involved in the planning process.
Ms. Grubman noted that the Teaching Effectiveness Committee had talked about crisis management at the FSEC's request earlier in the year and it was discussed their report to the Senate.
The meeting was adjourned at 12:40 p.m.
Sheila Black Grubman