FACULTY SENATE MEETING
November 17, 2009
Present: Chair Overton, Past Chair Martin, Secretary Hergeth; Senators Akroyd, Auerbach, Bernhard, Carver, Edmisten, Fleisher, Franke, Hatcher, Havner, Headen, Hemenway, Kidd, Kiwanuka-Tondo, Krim, Kocurek, Kotek, Levy, Miller-Cochran, Paur, Roberts, Sawyers, Townsend
Excused: Parliamentarian Weiner; Senators Anson, Argyropoulos, Khater, Murty, Poling
Absent: Senators Croom, Fahmy, Genereux, Poindexter, Williams
Guests: Lee Fowler, Athletic Director; Betsy Brown, Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs; John Ambrose, DUAP; Bill Winner, Coordinator ES Academic Program
1. Call to Order
Chair Overton called the meeting to order at 3 pm.
2. Welcome and Announcements
Chair Overton reminded the faculty that Board of Trustees meetings are open meetings if anyone would like to attend. She encouraged the faculty to attend occasionally so they will have a clear understanding of how the university works and interacts with the Board of Trustees.
Chair Overton announced that two additional activities have emerged based on conversations at Senate meetings. The first is a response to the Korean campus presentation and the invitation to have faculty interact with that group. Three Senators have acted on that and have formed an ad hoc group.
The second item is the administrative faculty and review standing committee that the Chancellor announced. Roby Sawyers volunteered to serve on that committee, and they have already met and are asking for more volunteers to help out.
Senator Sawyers announced that the Administrative Processes Review Steering Committee needs a faculty member to serve on two separate task forces dealing with simplifying and streamlining (1) processes related to travel authorization and reimbursement and (2) processes related to the hiring of EPA faculty positions. For the first, ideally we would have a faculty member who regularly travels on grant money as well as state money. For the second task force, ideally we would have a faculty member who has led several faculty searches. I would like to have 2 or 3 names for each task force so that we can make sure we get a good representation from multiple colleges.
If anyone is interested in serving they should contact Roby Sawyers at firstname.lastname@example.org .
3. Approval of the minutes, November 3, 2009
A motion passed to approve the minutes.
4. Provost Arden’s Comments
Update on the Office of the Provost
Katie Perry has been hired to work part time with Betsy Brown in Academic Affairs.
Vicki Walton is retiring after 33 years of service. The position that she held as Assistant Vice Provost has been changed to an SPA position, University Program Specialist. Amy Jinnette has been appointed to that position and will join Betsy Brown and Katie Perry in the Academic Affairs group.
Provost Arden reported that there are six people in addition to himself in the immediate Provost’s Office, which is about one half of what there was ten years ago. He stated that they are trying to make adjustments to be as responsive as possible, and if there are things that we can do better in the Provost’s Office faculty should feel free to give him that feedback.
Provost Arden stated that the way we communicate is important, and he does not think the Provost’s website is anywhere near what he would like it to be. As he reviews positions down the line that he would be interested in strengthening, having someone dedicated to communications, whether it is communications with faculty, students, or the web site, is a very high priority.
Provost Arden stated as a whole we do a good job on external communication, but he thinks we can significantly improve our internal communications.
Chair Overton stated that a meeting has been scheduled to talk about communication in the Faculty Senate.
Korean Campus Initiative
Provost Arden announced that he would be going to Korea in two weeks for about five or six days, and if anyone is concerned that the Korean Campus is a done deal, that is absolutely not the case.
Provost Arden stated that he would like to move the discussion beyond the Korean project to what we actually mean by globalization of this campus. There are many advantages to globalization of the campus, but most importantly, there are many new tools to be employed and many that have been employed for many years. We have study abroad. We have international students here. We have multilateral agreements, and we have joint research programs. We even have branch campuses such as the Prague Program; so you go all the way from Study Abroad at one end of the spectrum right up to the Korea project, which is sort of a branch campus at the high end of these tools being employed in globalization.
Provost Arden stated that he would like to see the Faculty Senate involved in the discussions that seem to be the most appropriate for us. He is not convinced that the branch campus model is necessarily the right tool, so rather than just discuss bits and pieces of it, he really would like to at some time have a good discussion on globalization, what it means to us, how to go about it, and what is the best way to utilize resources. He feels this is something that will not be effective unless faculty are the drivers, and any idea is developed by the Provost and Chancellor can will not be successful and will not move forward without full faculty involvement.
Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Program
Provost Arden stated that he is putting Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Program on the table as a discussion point because like globalization it is an issue that we have wrestled with. He thinks it’s fair to say that this has come to our immediate attention because of the Environmental Sciences Program, so he is using the Environmental Sciences Program as an example. Provost Arden handed out a packet and explained that he does not want to focus exclusively on environmental sciences, but that his interest is having a high level discussion and get the faculty’s input on the administration of interdisciplinary undergraduate programs.
Provost Arden explained that the first sheet is a diagram put together by Dr. Bill Winner, Coordinator ES Academic Program. Dr. Winner has gone through a lot of effort over the last three years to put together the Environmental Sciences Program, and he has really developed a phenomenal curriculum. There has been a lot of faculty engagement, but we are at a point where we are ready to move this to UCCC without some of the details being worked out on exactly how this would be administered.
The next page is very similar, a slight modification of the first that was put forth by John Ambrose. Provost Arden stated that the biggest difference is that Bill had more of a broad environmental science advisory committee composed of the deans of all of the colleges whereas in the second model we are predominantly using those colleges that play the largest role in this program. So it’s a slightly different flow diagram. The third page explains the bits and pieces behind the diagram.
Provost Arden stated that today he wants to have a generic discussion about undergraduate disciplinary programs, and he noted that we do have some interdisciplinary programs. We have some programs that we call interdisciplinary programs and they are within the one college. We have others that are between only two or three colleges, and they are fairly easy to administer, but once you start to talk about programs that involve three, four, five, six, or seven colleges, figuring out how to administer those is really a challenge. On one side, some would argue that the greatest ownership of any given program is when it is running out of a given college, and on the other side there is the question if a program is truly interdisciplinary if it is run out of one college rather than an interdisciplinary administering college. So those are some of the things that he wants discuss, some of the big picture questions about how we could go forward.
Provost Arden stated that if you look at the university’s chief initiatives, the environmental sciences, there are a number of big picture issues that cut across multiple colleges, and we want to eventually develop good academic programming in those strategic areas at both the undergraduate and graduate level.
Provost Arden said he is here to listen to faculty input and a lot of it at the end of the day comes down to the resources. How do you award the faculty who are participating in these programs and what are the rewards that go back to the parent colleges or parent departments for allowing faculty to participate in interdisciplinary programs?
Comments from Bill Winner
Dr. Winner stated that he would like to start with the idea how important it is to develop communication internally. He does not know of a university that has had a broader discussion about how to develop and revise a departmental academic program than this one. He said the discussions have been ongoing for the full three years that he has been here, and during the three years the discussions have been great and have touched every person on the campus.
Dr. Winner stated that we need a campus-wide environmental science program, and he noted that there have been meetings with several groups about the vision for environmental science so that all faculty members are involved.
John Ambrose reminded everyone that the program goes back to the mid nineties.
Why did multidisciplinary studies die?
It never really caught on as really being a truly campus-wide program.
In these structures who would be responsible for selecting, hiring, and promoting faculty?
This would be totally in the departmental structure.
Is the program not being driven by students?
The existing program has not attracted students, but the new program has. We have about 90 students now with a minor in environmental science. There is a lot of interest on this campus.
In models that you have been looking at the concept of dual degrees – Have dual degrees been looked at as one of the models that we could apply to all of the models?
No, that has not been looked at. I would guess that it would take two semesters beyond the environmental science degree.
What are the courses that distinguish this major?
The students get grounded in science.
Why are we not hearing a lot of talk about upper level classes?
The requirement is for five 300 level courses.
Have you explored more than just the 3 credits and maybe set up some partnerships? It sounds like just a bunch of courses.
Yes, we have created a bundle of service courses that could be applied toward this degree.
Students like to feel like they are part of something—in this program the advising has to be strong for them to get into the courses that they need to be in, but the advising is going to depend on department heads getting some credit. How do they get credit to stress to their advisors?
I think those are important ideas.
If a student is doing a double major, what department is going to get credit for these students? No answer.
Dr. Winner commented that the revised curriculum would not only be for the students of today but also the students of tomorrow. We are not the only ones wrestling with this, it is all over.
Have you thought about how this is going to be involved at a graduate level?
The first place we are looking is a Master of Science.
Does anyone think this is not a decent model? (Provost Arden)
Could you end up with an interdisciplinary college? How will the money flow to this interdisciplinary program?
That has not yet been resolved.
Comment: It seems to me that one committee makes more sense; it seems right now that we would be reinventing the wheel.
There was much discussion on this topic; Provost Arden plans to have a similar discussion with the deans. Please contact Dr. Winner with any additional questions.
Provost Arden stated that these are the kinds of discussions we need to have up front and that he would love for that to happen.
5. Issues of Concern
External Review Letter--What are the issues around asking for a waiver and then proceeding?
Chair Overton stated that she would have the status of the issues of concern out by the next meeting.
A motion passed to adjourn the meeting at 4:32 p.m.