November 3, 1998
Senators present: Chair Wahl, Chair-Elect Corbin, Secretary Daley, Provost Stiles, Senators Bernhard, Bottcher, Brown, Carter, El-Masry, Fahmy, FitzGerald, Funderlic, Gilbert, Griffin, Kimler, Hooker, Knowles, Lewis, Markham, Monahan, Nagel, Ollis, Patty, Peel, Schwab, Serow, Siderelis, Suh, Wall, Wilkerson, Willits
Senators excused: Senators Jewell, Siderelis, Parliamentarian Link, Middleton
Senators absent: Senators De Buysscher, Fisher, Hamouda, Jewell, Robinson
Visitors: James Anderson, Dean, Undergraduate Studies; Clare Kristofco, Chancellor's Office; Daniel Bunce, Assistant Editor, News Services; Sharon Byrd, Chair, Staff Senate; Lyare C. Omorium, Photographer, Agromek; Seth Whitaker, President Pro Tempore, Student Senate; Cara Froedge, The Technician; Bruce Mallette, Assistant Provost; Rebecca Leonard, Assistant Provost; Greg Holden, Assistant Director, Diversity Programs; Abie Harris, University Architect; Andrew Payne, Vice President for Academic Policy, Student Government;
1. Call to Order
The fifth meeting of the forty fifth session of the NC State Faculty Senate was called to order at 3:00 p.m. by Chair George Wahl.
2. Welcome and Announcements
Chair Wahl welcomed Senators and Guests. Chair Wahl announced that Senator Middleton will be retiring from the Senate.
Chair Wahl announced that the Provost Search Committee is going well. He encouraged the Senators to visit the Provost Search Home Page.
Chair Wahl urged the Senators to attend one of the three remaining meetings of the Board of Trustees.
Chair Wahl thanked Senators Suh and Hamouda for accommodating the Faculty Senate during the October 20 meeting.
3. Approval of the Minutes, Meeting No. 4, October 20, 1998
The minutes of the fourth meeting of the forty fifth session were approved without dissent.
4. Diversity Program
James Anderson, Dean of Undergraduate Studies reported that the diversity initiative on campus is taking various forms. He shared some national research on the outcomes of implementing diversity on campuses.
Dean Anderson reported that virtually all the institutions that are in the first tier of Research I Institutions have engaged in a significant diversity effort. Almost all of them in some way, are engaged in curricula transformation relative to diversity. He stated that even when we look at our peers, they have done that also. We are seeking not to emulate them, but to define, relative to our land grant mission, the kinds of things we would like to accomplish at NC State.
Dean Anderson provided a handout with a summary of some of the best research he feels NC State has on diversity. Included in the handout was a short bibliography. He stated that some speaks to general issues and some is broken down by disciplines so that if you have the urge to look at research articles dealing with science and the application of diversity, humanities and the application of diversity, etc. you will find that.
Dean Anderson commented that there are a few points that speak to the outcome more than others. He stated that one of the reasons it is important to look at the research is to expel a lot of these general myths that we have about whom diversity is for, how does it benefit students, etc. When you actually look at the best research that has been done, you find that all students benefit, faculty benefits, teaching improves and is valued more highly, students show overall satisfaction when you compare cohorts of students who have been exposed to diversity in the curriculum, versus cohorts of students who have not. Those students tend to have higher GPAs and tend to be much more satisfied with teaching and learning.
Dean Anderson reported that recently the Chair of the Pugh Trust Foundation and the Carnegie Foundation put up $6M to create the Carnegie Teaching Academy. The Carnegie Teaching Academy is involved in a five-year project to promote the scholarship of teaching and learning throughout the country. He stated that they have invited certain institutions to apply to participate in this Carnegie Teaching Academy. The Carnegie Teaching Academy has three components. The first is the Pugh Fellowship Program for individual faculty in which one hundred twenty-two individual faculty from around the country will be identified to be part of this academy and to define the parameters of scholarly teaching and learning. The second is called a Campus Program. The third is involvement of society. NC State applied to become part of the Campus Program project of the Carnegie Teaching Academy. He stated that the project has four stages. The first stage is to engage NC State faculty in a critical discourse concerning the definition of scholarly teaching for our campus. The first year of the involvement in the campus program would be to engaged as discourse throughout the campus. The second year you would move from the discourse to identifying one major idea that NC State wants to work on. The third stage would be to have the institutions who have one idea, now come together to have a critical discourse. The fourth stage would be to become an actual member of the Carnegie Teaching Academy. He feels once that happens, NC State will be in a better position to get grants to promote teaching excellence. They will plan to make sure that the Faculty Senate is part of that critical dialog.
5. Special Olympic Campus Plans
Greg Holden, Assistant Director of Diversity Programs, handed out applications for volunteers for the Special Olympics, to be held in June-July 1999. His goal is to recruit 5,000 volunteers. He stated that a volunteer must serve three, six-hour sessions. Two, two-hour training sessions are required. There is a link to the Special Olympic's page on the NC State Web Page. The deadline to submit applications is December 15, 1998. SPA employees will receive eight hours of leave for volunteering. He noted that the Board of Governors will consider extending the offer to all EPA Professionals, at their next meeting.
6. Update on Campus Plans
Abie Harris, University Architect, gave an update on the Physical Master Plan. He reported that after two years of planning, the 1994 Physical Master Plan was approved by the University Trustees in November of 1994. The plan was produced as a result of approximately two years worth of work with different groups. It perceived broad campus circulation in the spring of 1995.
Mr. Harris thinks the vision statement of the campus has been the part of the master plan that is serviced best. The vision statement essentially calls for the campus to be composed of a series of academic neighborhoods. He stated that over the years they have looked at the different campus environments and the area around the School of Design has served as a model for what has been used to describe the academic neighborhood. He thinks that over the years the physical characteristic of the campus has been that it has evolved around a series of open spaces. He noted that the architectural tradition at NC State is not exemplary. He said NC State does not have great buildings, but do have great spaces. He thinks that is the strength of its environment. Mr. Harris stated that the goal of master planning is to make a better environment and the notion of an academic neighborhood has a model.
Mr. Harris thinks the principal characteristics of the academic neighborhood model have to do with scale. He said the scale becomes very important in composing this large campus of more than 1,000 acres into more human size environments.
Mr. Harris reported that the original master plan divided the campus into a series of different precincts. The approval of the plan lies with the Trustees Building and Property Committee. He stated that there is also a campus steering team that Charles Leffler chairs. It has been broken up into task forces referred to as new layers. This would be for new things that are being added to the master plan. He stated that there will be a transportation level, an infrastructure level, and a space level.
Mr. Harris noted that an important part of the process is the precinct workshops. He invited the Senators to attend the next work shop which will be held at the College of Veterinary Medicine.
Senator Serow wanted to know what happens to parking, in the plans to redo the Riddick Parking Lot area.
Mr. Harris responded that on the North Campus they found that substantial improvements could be made. He stated that there is a great sense of urgency about making the North Campus more pedestrian oriented. He feels they can do that by taking the majority of the existing parking and relocating it in a new area very near to where it was previously. They would like the campus to be more beautiful. He stated that there is an inconsistency in parking and making a beautiful campus. He thinks the challenge is how they work that out.
Senator Funderlic commented that in line with the consistency of trying to make the campus more safe with lights and etc. and yet trying to make the campus beautiful, bushes are beautiful but they are not so safe.
Mr. Harris stated that one of their goals and a consistent guiding principle in each workshop that they have had, does address the safety as well as the beauty.
Senator Kimler wanted to know where to go to read guidelines and expectations when space is made available.
Mr. Harris responded that the guidelines and the narrative part of the master plan are on the web. He suggested asking the provost about space since he is on the Space Committee and he and his colleagues make decisions about space on campus.
Provost Stiles stated that they are having a visit from GA about what is happening with the space on campus.
Senator Carter stated that there was a concern developing that when the master plans are written out, it is almost too late to change it. There is a concern with the Senate that we might not be as watchful as we need to be. He stated that these groups are gearing to our design guidelines because clearly North Creek was meant to be a thing of beauty. Now it is going to be a challenge to our Horticulture Department to come up with some way of planting trees, etc. to offset the sighting of that very tall parking lot right next to the stream. It looks as if things have gotten out of hand. He wanted to know if Mr. Harris feels that he and his committee are still in control.
Mr. Harris responded yes. He stated that what you are seeing in that is an example of several things. One is obviously a commitment to parking. He stated that what Craig Davis has done there has really exceeded the City of Raleigh standards. The parking ratios that the city require for the kind of building that we are building requires one space for every three hundred square feet. Craig Davis has provided one space for every two hundred and fifty square feet of building area. By contrast what we have on this campus is one space for every six hundred square feet. He stated that the density expectations for Centennial Campus are very aggressive. He thinks that will be a good illustration of what will really be the urban nature of Centennial Campus. It will be as compact as our North Campus here. He stated that they are in control and the open space is being protected. North Creek will be a landscape channel. He thinks the stark appearance of the parking deck will be softened by some good landscaping that will be put in to attempt to hide that. It will be something for us to see and we can measure whether or not this is the way we want to continue to develop or not.
7. Remarks from the Provost
Provost Stiles stated that the presentation about space will be part of the public record in the sense that the General Administration meets to find out what the situation is and to come up with a ten-year plan of what should be done about space within the university at large.
Provost Stiles reported that the Legislation budget that was passed recently funded a number of things that are very important to NC State. Particularly from his point of view, major support for graduate education.
Provost Stiles stated that five people received Nobel Prizes this fall. One of them was born in the United States and got his education here. The other four were born in other countries. All of the research was done here. Two of them came over here to get their PhDs and two came after their PhDs to do the science in this country. He said he is not trying to say that the United States does not produce people who can win the prizes.
Provost Stiles stated that he used in a discussion that one of the winners from Germany did his work at Bell Laboratories. He said there is no economic impact of the work that won the Nobel Prize. If you look back far enough, there were three Americans working at Bell's lab who invented a thin transistor which made a big difference in the economic impact in the world. He feels that Nobel Prizes can or cannot necessarily have impact, but it is important that we are a place where the best people in the rest of the country and world want to come and study and do their scholarship.
Provost Stiles reported that there will be a General Administration group gathering data on information technology in all the campuses. We need to do our homework so that we can present what the issues are on this campus that will be different from many of the other campuses in the University of North Carolina.
Provost Stiles reported that he attended the exit meeting with the review team that came in for all the Engineering programs. He stated that NC State looked very good. The team was very impressed with the faculty and what they do. Four of the thirteen said they found the students very articulate. Provost Stiles noted that he is pleased with what has recently been done with Engineering.
8. Unfinished Business
A. Report on Proposed Uniform Grievance Procedures for Students
Harriette Griffin, Chair of the Academic Policy Committee stated that the report is in reference to the proposed uniform grievance procedures for students. Currently the university maintains eleven different grievance procedures for students. Each College, School or Division has a slightly different procedure with basic similarities. Some of the differences are that the contact person in each unit may be different. In some units it is an Associate Dean, sometimes it's a student leader. Her committee reviewed the proposed uniform grievance procedure and has endorsed it deciding that the multitude of procedures currently creates unnecessary confusion for the students. The Student Senate has also endorsed this procedure. She moved that the Senate endorse the proposed uniform grievance procedure for students. The motion was seconded by Senator Gilbert.
The motion passed.
B. Resolution on Scholars and Honors Programs
Senator Griffin presented the resolution for its second reading.
Senator Kimler commented that most of us see this as an opportunity to get support. There has never been that coherent way to get support across campus. It looks like an opportunity for Honors Programs that exist already.
Senator Hooker stated that he does not understand what the proposal is saying. Our honor programs are college and departmentally based and adding this layer of bureaucracy is going to give us consistency how?
Senator Kimler responded, consistency in knowing that you have funding with an enhanced budget which a bureaucracy can manage.
Senator Bernhard stated that many faculty teach large courses and have said for years, it would be nice to take the top 20% and offer a more advanced section for them. We have not done it because we do not have the staff to do it unless we carry a larger number of courses ourselves. It is very easy for the Senate to pass a resolution directing the Provost and Deans to give us more resources. With fixed resources, what are you proposing not be done in order that we be able to do this?
Senator Griffin responded, that is not our decision to make. We are not the allocator of the resources. Therefore, if it is important for the Deans and Provost to make those allocations, it is their jobs to decide where the funds come from.
Provost Stiles told the faculty to stop and think what it means to say I want release time to do something. He said that is not a good mental mind set when you think of that. Try to think of reallocation from one responsibility to another.
Provost Stiles stated that the Senate could certainly consider things like the following; we are going to grow; we are going to enroll more students; we are going to teach more students; those additional credit hours will bring resources into the university; the normal procedure is as the credit hours increase, faculty positions are given to the college where the credit hours are increasing. He stated that it is not a question necessarily of reallocating what is on the table now, but allocating future resources to those things which are a prime priority.
Senator Hooker feels that it would be a failing if the Senate endorses the resolution as it stands. He thinks there are inconsistencies, omissions, and contradictions. He stated that what he is reading is saying that we want to support honors courses. What he sees is more support for administrative positions and a physical facility and that is not the need of the students nor the faculty. He does not know how it connects with the existing honors structure. He encouraged the Senators to ask for a clearer document and clearer thinking.
Senator Wall stated that he is concerned that what comes through this document is that this is a document intending to set up a new bureaucracy, and that this is a document seeking a situation that will not take anything away from the existing situation. He stated that far from setting up another bureaucracy, what they are looking for is coordination to ensure that their emphasis is on delivering to the students what they need at the moment.
Senator Carter supports the resolution. He stated that it provides for a coordinator and a place to give it some structure to make it a University Honors Program.
Senator Patty thinks there are excellent courses and faculty participating in the Honors Program. However, he does not feel that the needs of the students are being met. He stated that currently honors courses are getting credit for AP courses that people have taken in high school in order to come up with what they need to get the honors designation. He sees it as a program that is barely getting along, actually doing quite well based on what is being put into it. A lot of it is because of the work that Senator Wall does on the Honors Council. He feels that it needs more continuity than that and it is not something that he thinks the Chair of the Honors Council can handle. Senator Patty stated that he favors the resolution and leaves the implementation to those who need to allocate the resources and decide on what programs need to go forward.
Senator Hooker feels NC State needs to be strong in honors which means courses first of all, and faculty having the abilities and resources to teach them. Senator Hooker stated that he does not believe the document is well thought out and he would very much like to endorse a very strong document that is supported and pushes forward the Honors Program. He does not think the Senate is doing the university a favor by just saying yes and passing the resolution.
Senator Monahan offered a friendly amendment to the resolution. Senator Griffin accepted the amendment.
A motion was made and seconded to postpone the resolution until the next meeting. The motion failed.
Senator Griffin called the question to vote on the amended resolution.
The motion passed to adopt the resolution.
Senator Gilbert moved to adjourn the meeting. The motion was seconded and passed. The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.