FACULTY SENATE MEETING
February 5, 2013
Present: Chair Kellner, Chair Elect Zonderman, Secretary Sawyers, Provost Arden, Parliamentarian Weiner; Senators Aday, Ade, Argyropoulos, Aspnes, Borden, Bourham, Bradley, Daley, Fleisher, Freeman, Funkhouser, Holden, Jasper, Knopp, Lubischer, Lunardi, Moore, M Moore, Snyder, P. Williams
Excused: Senators Hatcher, Morgado, Penrose, Rucker, Spontak, L. Williams, M. Williams
Absent: Senator Nfah-Abbenyi, Piedrafita, Devetsikiotis,
Guests: Kevin Howell, Chancellor’s Office; P. J. Teal, Chancellor’s Office; Betsy Brown, Provost Office; Richard Bernhard, Professor, Industrial and System Engineering, Alex Yadon, Student; Sarah Stone, External Affairs
1. Call to Order
Chair Kellner called the 10th meeting of the fifty ninth session of the NC State Faculty Senate to order at 3 p.m.
2. Remarks and Announcements
Chair Kellner welcomed guests and senators.
Chair Kellner stated that he provided an electronic copy of the PowerPoint presentation of the Strategic Plan Budget Implementation package to the senators. It was presented at the University Council and at the Budget Advisory Committee meetings.
Chair Kellner stated that there was a meeting on January 29th on the subject of “Brand Refresh.” The university has a brand and needs a brand so that everyone will recognize it. The group heard from representatives of an Education Marketing Group out of Colorado, who was brought in to handle many of the stake holder groups around the university. The goal will be ultimately to come up with a consensus based branding so that when people think of NC State they will think of something. This will be part of the lead in to the Capital Campaign.
Another aspect leading up to the Capital Campaign begin yesterday with a campaign priorities meeting that is headed by Mike Mullen. They will have the job of coming up with BIG ideas for BIG Asks. These ideas are to come from the university as a whole rather than dealing with one group or another. Some interesting ideas did appear and this group will meet regularly in the next month or so.
The Chair and Chair Elect met with Planning and Analysis to discuss the Faculty Senate’s election process. Chair -elect Zonderman encouraged senators who are eligible to run for re-election.
Chair Kellner announced that an Ombuds Committee has been set up and their first meeting will be in March.
Vice Provost Betsy Brown commented on the discussions regarding the possibility of a committee to deal with non-tenure track faculty.
Chair Kellner announced that the Emerging Issues Forum will be Monday and Tuesday of next week.
3. Approval of the Minutes, Meeting No. 9, January 22, 2013
The minutes were approved as edited.
4. Remarks from Provost Arden
Provost Arden stated that NC State’s strategic plan is a very good plan, very achievable but not necessarily cheap. It will cost approximately $100 million recurring, a one- time cost of about $200 million and if you were to include the necessary new space as built space it would be another $200 million. He emphasized that for us to accomplish that, those resources are going to have to come from a couple of areas. The first is additional new resources from the outside including state appropriations, tuition, enrollment expansion, endowment, research grants and contracts, growth or otherwise. I can’t tell what proportion of those funds will come to us in that way, but it’s clear that a significant proportion of the resources will need to come from the second area and that is from some sort of internal reallocation of resources.
Provost Arden stated that he is working with the deans and the unit heads to talk about how to align resources with the strategic plan over the coming years. We are off to a good start on a lot of our strategic goals, but we need to ensure that we have the resources.
Provost Arden reported that a Search Committee is being formed for the new Senior Vice Provost for the Office of Institutional Research and Planning. We are investing in University Planning and Analysis to take it to another level. Vice Provost Tom Miller has agreed to lead the search and it is hopeful that someone will be in place by the summer.
Provost Arden announced that the Hunt Library’s official opening will be April 3 and the keynote speaker will be Dr. Vartan Gregorian, the CEO of Carnegie Foundation and previously President of Brown University and the leader of the New York Public Library System. Dr. Gregorian is an advocate for libraries within academia and within the public domain. Marvin Malecha is leading the task force that is looking at the details of that event.
Provost Arden stated that the Campaign Priorities Task Force had its initial meeting yesterday. Mike Mullen is leading this committee and we have already been through a visioning process that will bring the colleges’ requirements together as well as a long list of things and now we have to build that into university-wide agendas. This $1.5 billion campaign will have a seven or eight year duration, so this is going to be a critical part of raising the resources that are necessary to move our strategic plan forward.
Provost Arden reported that planning for the new College of Sciences is ongoing. As was mentioned we have parallel strategic processes in both colleges. What the overarching university process did was lay out what programs and what people are going to be where and the overarching missions of those colleges. The details of how those colleges are organized needs to be driven by a faculty discussion within the colleges. Dean Linton is leading those discussions as well as Dean Solomon with both processes being facilitated by outside groups. I expect to have the first results of their strategic plan within a month to get a glimpse of how the faculty and the leadership of those colleges view the structure.
Questions and Comments
Would you address the issue of disability student testing and the lack of space provided by the DSO?
Provost Arden responded that it is an important issue. They don’t have solutions yet but it is on the agenda. The issue is a growing number of our students are requiring disability services. This is an issue that institutions across the country are also facing. There is an increasing frequency of diagnosis of disabilities requiring accommodations. The vast majority of those are learning disabilities of one kind or another and we have inadequate testing facilities. There are not nearly enough facilities available and this could be a very difficult bottleneck for us. He predicted that this is going to become an even bigger issue.
Provost Arden stated that one thing they did was to shift disability services out of OEO to the Division of Academic and Student Affairs. They wanted to make a statement about approaching disability services for students less from a regular compliance perspective and more from a student learning and success perspective. He stated that they are working on it, but they are clearly going to have to identify an increasing amount of space in buildings.
Senator Knopp noted that NC State was recently ranked number six in the Princeton Review “best values” list.
Chair Elect Zonderman stated that space is a huge issue here. How do we as a Faculty Senate help the university gain a broader perspective of the issue?
Provost Arden stated that he thinks our strategic plan is very achievable, but he does worry about space because the likelihood that we will get all the new space that we need for new hires in new appropriated space is not high. A big part of this is going to have to come from space reallocation within the institution. What I don’t want to happen within the next seven or eight years is every time we hire an outstanding new tenure track faculty member that we are fighting about where they are going to go. We need a more comprehensive space reallocation strategy. I have asked the deans to identify by a certain date where they will put faculty excellence hires that we are currently searching for. I encourage you to have this discussion in your department meetings and encourage the department heads to identify how we can move this forward. We don’t expect colleges to offer up their best space, we are trying to identify the resources to upgrade space. We know that there are pockets throughout the university that we are going to have to make some significant investments in to bring the quality of space up to standard. So if colleges are willing to do the hard work of identifying space that they are going to offer up for new hires we will try to identify the resources to bring that space up to standard, but it’s going to take all of us working together.
Both the Faculty and Staff Senates have talked about including an initiative in our next fundraising campaign to endow a scholarship fund for children of faculty and staff. How can we go about making sure that Mike Mullen and the committee consider that in their list of priorities?
Provost Arden stated that he thinks it is important for the Faculty Senate to have a discussion. There are multiple avenues for getting your ideas on the table. I would encourage you to have that discussion quickly. I also think it would be beneficial to have Mike Mullen come and speak to this group.
5. Remarks from Kevin Howell, Assistant to the Chancellor for External Affairs
Kevin Howell, Assistant to the Chancellor for External Affairs stated that last year more than 660 years of experience was lost in the Legislature including members who were redistricted out of their district, retired or decided not to come back to the North Carolina General Assembly. Sixty percent of the members this year are either serving their first or second term. When you look at the North Carolina Senate, 32% of the members are freshmen and 38% of the members in the House are freshmen, so our challenge is first with educating the members what we do. A lot of comments that you hear coming out of the Legislature, oftentimes they don’t know all of what this university does in helping companies locate here and the research that goes on on this campus. One of our greatest challenges that the Chancellor and Provost face is making sure that the Legislature understands who we are and why we are important as a land grant university to our state.
This week the Board of Governors is voting on our budget as well as our policy agenda. When you look at the state budget overall the general fund revenue is on target. The legislature has set a goal to get out of town by July 1 and they showed that they could do that last year. They are coming in, doing their business and we hope that they are making the right decisions. The first part of the session is always challenging.
Howell stated that our expansion budget this year is aligned with the strategic plan. Our asking is pretty much the same every year. We want financial aid funding. We always want enrollment growth funding. We want R&R (repair and renovation) funding. The study that was done by the legislature said that we had a $4.4 billion backlog on our R&R funding, so as the Provost talks about and discusses space it is important. For the past five years the state provided $139 million across state government, so this year our request will be approximately $163 million. Just because we have requested it, doesn’t mean that we are going to receive all of that funding. The General Assembly is going through some tough economic times, so we just want to maintain.
Getting money for capital projects is always challenging, so that will be an issue this year as we look at some of the other items in the budget.
Howell stated that other issues for the university include management flexibility, centers and institutes, and budget specifics from the past few years. The good thing that the Legislature did was to come in last week and they got right on it. They have hit the ground running and have addressed some really tough issues that affect all of us.
Howell handed out the UNC system’s legislative policy agenda.
Howell stated that one thing that he likes about being a part of the university is the people all across this campus. He noted that a lot of legislators are on campus on a frequent basis which is an opportunity for them to learn more about NC State.
Questions and Comments
When the Legislature see us operating with a smaller budget do they perceive that as we really did not need the extra money? How do they interpret our responses?
Howell stated that when you look at the overall state budget, 79% of the budget goes to education, Department of Health and Human Services and Public Safety, so they went after K-12 last time and so now it is one of those things where we feel like it’s our time, but to answer your question, we showed them what those reductions and what those cuts will mean to the university system and that is communicated by the Chancellor, Provost, BOG and Board of Trustees. We have done our fair share, we have taken our reduction.
How do you strike a balance at being an advocate for NC State end being an advocate to the UNC System?
Howell stated that they have good relationships but there are times when we do disagree. All of the universities are not the same. Our office tends to work more closely with Chapel Hill because we are both Research-One Universities.
There is a prohibition of retired faculty coming back and volunteering in any capacity for 6 months—How do we go about trying to get that changed?
Howell stated that it is on the legislative agenda for the UNC system. How do we get it passed? The goal is to go after it the first 30 days. We have to have some conversations with the Treasurer’s Office and if we can’t get thirty days then we are looking for ninety days. The strategy should be very simple. I think GA is going to recommend that some of these items can be put in the budget because when the item is put in the budget as a special provision, it is done and most people don’t want to take different things out of the budget in order to vote on them.
How do we as a Faculty Senate get more legislators to come to campus?
Howell stated that there are a couple of things going on now. For example, Legislators as well as the Governor are going to be present at the upcoming Emerging Issues Forum. The next big event is happening on February 25 which is the official opening at the Hunt Library. We are hoping that the Governor will be there along with some of the legislators.
The biggest improvement in state policy has been the 5% rollover budget at the end of the fiscal year. How did it come about?
Howell stated that this year we have more NC State alum serving in the legislature than ever before, which is very helpful in getting things done.
Will the Legislature pass the BOG budget—how routine is that?
Howell responded that he hopes so and stated that the first step is the Governor will be giving his State of the State Address on February 18 and that starts the process where the governor lays out his priorities. President Ross and the CFOs of the university system have been meeting with the governor’s office and talking about the issues that affect higher education. The best case scenario is that the governor will put a lot of our budget priorities in his budget. I’m also reminded by the Legislature that the budget starts on the Senate side and the House will get the budget and then they will come together. You will recall in previous years that the House and the Senate did a joint budget and those days are over. Each chamber wants their own, so hopefully we will get a lot of our initiatives. Usually it’s about $122.1 million in the first year and in the second year around $200 million. You look at our numbers $54.7 million this year and $107.5 million the second year and I think it is doable.
There is a lot of talk about reforming the tax system—what are the odds of that happening?
Howell stated that without knowing all of the details of our budget that is a huge undertaking, but I will predict that this is the legislature’s next big issue and the problem is that it affects everyone. The reason that they are looking for money and some of the things that I have been hearing is if you take the income tax out of the tax code, how are you going to make up that money?
6. Consideration of Faculty Assembly Resolutions on UNC Strategic Plan
Chair Kellner stated that the Chair of the Faculty Assembly is assembling statements of support from all of the Faculty Senates and Councils in the system.
Chair-elect Zonderman stated that he thought they did an exceptional job on the document under inordinate time pressure.
A motion was moved and seconded to support the Faculty Assembly’s Resolution on the UNC Strategic Plan. The motion was voted on and passed.
7. Senate Discussion-“Branding” Questions for Brad Bohlander
The students here are not as committed to the institution. Are we going to be the same brand for everyone or are we going to look at different constituencies?
What is his your plan to differentiate national branding from branding within the state?
What are the strategies to deal with the metrics within the rankings?
Why should faculty care about something like branding?
Are we a product or are we a brand?
The brand needs to be aligned with the future direction of where we are going.
Important that when you brand education you don’t cheapen what we do. The capability is already here, they just need to be articulated.
8. Committee Reports
Senator Daley reported from the Group Insurance and Benefits committee that the issue of a daycare on campus is more of a challenge now.
A motion passed to adjourn the meeting at 4:45 p.m.