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August 21, 2012

Present:  Chair Kellner, Chair Elect Zonderman, Secretary Sawyers, Provost Arden, Parliamentariain Weiner; Senators Ade, Argyropoulos, Aspnes, Borden, Bourham, Bradley, Daley, Devetsikiotis, Fleisher, Freeman, Fuentes, Funkhouser, Holden, Jasper, Knopp, Knowles, Lubischer, Lucian, Lunardi, Moore, Morgado, Nfah-Abbenyi, Penrose, Snyder, Spontak, Sztajn, Tyler, L. Williams, P. Williams

Excused:  Rucker, M. Williams

Absent:  Aday, Hatcher

Visitors:  Randy Woodson, Chancellor; Duane Larick, Sr. Vice Provost for Strategic Initiatives; P. J. Teal, Secretary of the University; Eileen Goldgeier, General Counsel; Alex, Student Government Academics Chair; Emerson Barker, Student Government Senate President Pro Tempore; Margery Overton, Immediate Past Chair of the Faculty; Marielle Pocan, Assistant to the Provost for Internal Communications; Betsy Brown, Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs; Richard Bernhard, Professor Emeritus, Industrial and System Engineering

1. Call to Order
Chair Kellner called the 1st meeting of the 59th session to order at 3 p.m.

2. Remarks from the Chair
The Faculty Senate has three Executive Officers:  Chair of the Faculty, Hans Kellner, Professor of English.  The Secretary of the Faculty is Professor Roby Sawyers, Department of Accounting, and the Chair Elect of the Faculty is Professor David Zonderman, Professor of History.  The Chair-Elect’s job is to say to the Chair, “ I support you in what you are doing, but I would have done it differently myself.”  Next year David will be the Chair and I will be the Past Chair of the Faculty and my job will be to say the exact same thing to him.

The Executive Committee of the Senate consists of eight members plus the Executive Officers, plus the Provost, and these eight individuals chair/cochair the four standing committees of the Senate.  First the Academic Policy Committee is cochaired this year by Dimitris Argyropoulos, Professor in Natural Resources and Professor Warren Jasper from Textiles.  The Governance Committee is cochaired by Professor of Nuclear Engineering Mohamed Bourham and Professor Laurel Williams from Veterinary Medicine.  The Personnel Policy Committee is cochaired by David Aspnes, Distinguished Professor of Physics and Leda Lunardi, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering.  The final committee is Resources and Environment and the cochairs this year are Professor Ed Funkhouser from the Department of Communications and Professor Wesley Snyder from the College of Engineering.

Chair Kellner said the fifty ninth year of the Faculty Senate leads to a question, why are we here? 

The Mission of the Faculty Senate
The North Carolina State University Faculty Senate is the sole, all-campus, faculty-elected, representative and deliberative policy proposing body of the University.  As such, the Faculty Senate assumes an active role in the University governance system through its responses to committee reports and its policy resolutions which are presented to the university administration for acceptance and implementation.

Having been in the Faculty Senate for eight of my ten years here, the Faculty Senate is something other and more.  The Faculty Senate is the best vantage point on the university as a whole.  You would think that maybe being the Provost or even the Chancellor would be a great vantage point on the university and it is, but  from here in the Senate we see and participate in the workings of the university and via our Senate activities we get to meet people from all of the colleges, people that we would never meet otherwise and we get to see the institution as a whole and the only place the faculty comes together in a representative way.  That is what I love about this place, getting to know the people and through that getting to know the university.   Unless you have served in the military, the university is probably the biggest organization that you are going to be a part of.   It’s huge, it’s complex, and it’s filled with things and committees that you never dreamed existed. 

Today, I pulled out a volume of the minutes from forty years ago and I was very pleased at what the first meeting in 1972, forty years ago was, it was a ratification of the proposed charter of the Faculty Assembly of the University of North Carolina.  The Faculty Assembly is where representatives of campus governance from all areas of the UNC System get together with the President of the University system and the staff and discuss issues.  This reminds us that although we have a tendency to think in terms of our own departments, we are  part of a larger poll here and it was created by real leaders forty years ago.  I think that remembering sports makes it seem as if we are all competitive as campuses and have to look out for ourselves, but the Faculty Assembly reminds us of the diversity of North Carolina, the many completely different kinds of institutions that are part of it, different kinds of students and the different kinds of colleagues we have there.

Last month I attended a retreat of the Faculty Assembly Executive Committee at East Carolina University where we all stayed in dorm rooms.  President Ross and Vice President Ortega were there and despite being invited to stay in the University guest house, they both chose to stay in dorm rooms too, which I thought was a good sign.  Those two days, the Executive Committee talked about issues for the year, the focuses that they would have, that we would have there and we came up with broad topics like faculty welfare, articulations in all sorts of different areas.  I’ll keep you posted on the meetings as they happen. 

There are things going on out there that are broader than NC State.  I want to say one final word, a sober word in that in the last spring we have seen the development of a number of situations at various universities; Penn State, University of Virginia, UNC Chapel Hill, and it follows along other explosions a couple of years ago like Duke Lacrosse and I spent a lot of time thinking about these things and what they have in common and watching and reading Faculty Senate blogs from all over the place and finding out what has been going on, because as you follow the stories in every case Faculty Senates have changed their role, have stepped up and have become very important voices for the university. 

Speaking with one voice is very important.  Relating to other interested parties, alumni, Trustees, is crucial and standing up for the best values of the university when we discover sometimes that they are not always being carried out.  We have to be prepared, connected and vocal. 

Chair Kellner announced that each of the Senators is on one of the Faculty Senate standing committees.  Usually those meetings are placed on the reverse side of the agenda.  I have asked each of the committees to begin with a particular issue.  An athletic question suggested by Secretary Sawyers, having to do with the placement of athletic advisors, which at Chapel Hill, Chancellor Thorpe has made sure that the athletic advisers are under academic control and not athletic control.  Academic Policies will be looking into that issue.  I have asked Resources and Environment to examine the possibility of an express transportation bus between the two libraries, the Hunt and DH Hill express non stop every ten minutes or so, a real link between main campus and Centennial Campus.  We are going to ask Governance to look out there and find the best practices for Faculty Senate websites and communication devices.   Finally for Personnel Policy, I have asked the committee to look into developing a proposal for an ombudsman.  After the meeting we will attend the Chancellor’s picnic and I look forward to that.  

3. Approval of the Minutes, Meeting No. 14, April 17, 2012
Secretary Sawyers described the procedures for how the minutes are put together.  The minutes are typed based on a recording and then reviewed by the Secretary of the Faculty.  Sawyers encouraged Senators to state  his or her name when asking questions or making comments so that we will have an accurate record. 

Secretary Sawyers asked for approval of minutes.  The motion passed to approve the minutes as submitted.

4. Remarks from Chancellor Woodson
I would like to start my remarks with something that Chair Kellner pointed out.  He mentioned that Chancellor Thorpe has taken great care to ensure that academics are appropriately reporting to the Provost and not to Athletics.  Interestingly enough, Chancellor Monteith made sure of that more than twenty years ago with NC State.  In fact, academic support for student athletes was entirely separate from athletics, reports to the Provost and have for quite some time, and one of the things that also happened because certainly NC State has had it’s time.  Another thing that this university has done particularly well is we have had for many years an Athletics Council that this body has a number of seats on and appoints faculty to and is chaired by a faculty member and I think it would be appropriate for that body to report back to this body on the activities of the Athletic Council. I can tell you as a Chancellor, we have taken a lot of interest in the issues that our colleagues have faced and we have been paying close attention and I feel very good about the academic oversight for the progress of our student athletes, the way it is administered and the courses that they take relative to their peers.  I think it would be valuable to this group since you have such a strong connection to the Athletic Council. 

We entered the fiscal year in a very positive way in terms of a balanced budget.  We didn’t have any reversions back to the state, which is the first time in three years that we have not lost money because the state has taken money back at the end of the year.  That helps us to carry over some money, it helps us to do some much needed infrastructure to projects, and it frankly just help us to catch our breath after a difficult period of three years. 

We also had our first salary increase in four years and it’s 1.2 percent.  The UNC Board of Governors passed a resolution that insisted that all of the campuses provide that increase across the  board, which is not typical.  We would have spent more time and money trying to figure out how to distribute on merit basis, and frankly it’s hard to imagine anyone at our university that doesn’t deserve a cost of living adjustment.  In addition, though we didn’t get the authority from the legislature or the money, we recognize that with so many years of non salary policies within the university that we have really grown to have a number of equity issues and it’s going to take us a while to deal with this, so we have set aside some modest funds, 1% essentially, to allow department heads and unit leaders to address some of the severe cases of inequity and market issues that we face across our faculty and staff and we have done that in a way that requires that to be limited to a small number of individuals.  That’s not a good thing necessarily, but the only way we can make progress on the really severe equity situation is to begin to address it. We don’t have a general merit tool that we are going to be able to do big things for the people that deserve it, but we have tried to create an opportunity.  We have Assistant Professors that have been here three and four years that are making less than people that were hired last year and there are similar situations throughout the university, so the only way we can address that is to begin to tackle it and this isn’t enough money to do that, but it’s a start.

The good news from a legislative standpoint is all restrictions related to our salary policy have gone away.  That doesn’t mean that there is a flood gate and it doesn’t mean that we have the money but it does mean that it is now our decision.  We don’t have to use discretionary resources that are not equal across colleges, so we can begin to get back to normal in that regard and I hope that’s the beginning.

One of the things that I feel compelled to ask you and it’s very hard to do this when I’ve just described a salary policy of 1.2%, but I do want to remind you that soon we will be launching the State Employees Combined Campaign and you will be solicited among others to try to contribute back to organizations that are not for profit across the state of North Carolina. NC State this past year was among the leading institutions in terms of per capital giving, so you have been very generous and for that I’m very grateful, and I’ll  just remind you that there are a lot of people across the state that continue to struggle and whatever organization that you are passionate about it impacts a lot of people.  We are fourth in the nation in unemployment across the state so, North Carolina continues to have some challenges, so what ever you can do I’ll appreciate it.

Questions and Comments

Senator Fleisher—You mentioned 1.2 % increase across the board and you also said that some people will get more because of salary issues, so if some people are going to get more money, does that mean that some people will also get less?

Chancellor Woodson responded no, because the only raise policy from the state is 1.2 percent.  We went to the university General Administration and said we need as a university the authority to deal with some of the key inequity issues that we have experienced so they have given us limited authority to begin to ask department heads across the campus to tell us what are the key salary issues that you face.  We know everyone deserves more money but we have some really crisis situations where people are for example, Assistant Professors that have been here for four or five years and are making less than people who have been here for six months.  So, we have the authority to use our own money, which we don’t have much of, to give deans and department heads a chance to begin to address some of those issues.

Senator Knopp – Will there also be promotional raises?

Chancellor Woodson responded that promotional raises have never stopped.  Anyone receiving a promotional increase will still receive the 1.2 percent.

Senator Paul Williams made a comment regarding student athletes and noted that we have a fairly unique process at NC State in which the Faculty (through the Faculty Athletic Representative, Sam Pardue and the Faculty Athletic Committee of the Faculty Athletic Council – are responsible for certifying academic eligibility of student athletes. 

Senator Moore inquired about the special leave that was provided along with the increase.

Chancellor Woodson stated that another wonderful thing that the General Assembly provided in lieu of money is five days of paid vacation leave that has to be used in this fiscal year before June 30, unlike the leave that was received in the past, this has to be used or you will lose it.

Chair Kellner commented that on the athletic matter the point that everyone has brought forward is we all need to know how these things work and we need to keep it in mind. 

5. Remarks from Provost Arden
This relationship between the administration and the Faculty Senate is an important relationship. I’m coming into my fourth year into the Provost office and one of the things that I was first told when I  came on board was that relationships weren’t always so rosy, so I want to give a lot of credit to this body for really working closely together to address some pretty important issues over the last several years.  I find it a very important relationship and one that I look forward to getting your input on when I have critical issues to discuss.  Over the last three years we have tackled a lot of things, in particularly over the last two years including a new university strategic plan a couple of years ago and that was truly our plan.  It was developed by the campus as a whole with 160 faculty, staff, and students serving on those committees that developed that plan.  We have developed a new long term enrollment plan to go along with that plan.  We have developed and released a strategic realignment plan to allow us to do some things quickly within the university that will allow us to operate more effectively and more efficiently as an institution, all is part of our strategic plan. We have I think moved fairly quickly through the first elements of that strategic plan.  We have consolidated Diversity and Inclusion and the Office of Equal Opportunity and Multi-culture Student Affairs into the Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity.  We did that July 1 of last year.  We have eliminated Extension and Engagement and Economic Development and we have distributed those activities to the Office of the Provost and Vice Chancellor Lomax’s office.  We have combined the Division of Academic Undergraduate Affairs and Student Affairs which is no small undertaking into the new Division of Academic and Student Affairs which came into place on July 1 and we have hired an outstanding leader for that division, Dr. Michael Mullen who started on August 1.  Mike comes to us from the University of Kentucky where he was the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs in the College of Agriculture and most recently Associate Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Programs to the university. 

We have hired two additional deans this summer, Dr. Richard Linton in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, who is currently serving as head of Food Science and Technology at Ohio State University and Dr. Mary Watson who is coming to us from the University of  Vermont where she is currently Dean of the School of Natural Environment and Natural Resources at the university and she  will be taking over that role in October, so altogether this year we have four key leaders that have come to the university and I am very excited about these individuals joining the campus. 

The last three years have brought two of the worst budgets in the history of the university. Not withstanding that, there are a lot of things on the agenda  for this year and we are going to have to continue to work together very closely to ensure that these things occur in a timely manner and occur with the best possible outcome.  Right at the top of my list is the College of Sciences implementation.  We announced at the end of the spring semester the move of Biological Sciences from CALS to the College of Sciences and that will go into effect July of next year, so to get this done we have to move quickly.  The Steering Committee which I chair has been working hard all summer and we have made very significant progress in defining the decision processes that will have to take place, defining which working groups will be making those decisions, defining the overall scope of the Biological Sciences Division in the College  of Sciences and defining the tenure/ tenure- track  faculty who will move .  We have been in very active discussions with those departments and with those faculty getting their input for the last four weeks and I can tell that we are getting very close to having a final decision on those faculty that will move.  When we first begin this discussion we talked about 40 tenure/tenure-track faculty and at the moment we are somewhere around 42 or 44 FTEs of tenure/tenure-track faculty that will be moving from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences to the College of Sciences.

The other things that are on my list for this year that needs to be focused on are the Academic Program Effectiveness and Efficiency Report which is due from that task force very shortly.  Dr. Larick has been leading the task force.  We  hope to have those results and begin that discussion with the deans and department heads this fall.

We really want to make a big impact this year with the Chancellor’s Faculty Excellence Program.  We are attempting to bring not quite forty new faculty to this campus this year, which means we will be interviewing more than 100 outstanding faculty all across the campus and we will be bringing them into twelve different clusters on campus. 

We have a new Academic Program Planning process that is in draft form that we hope to have approved by the Council of Deans this week. This is designed to grade the situation that we have been in for some time in which faculty spend huge amounts of time developing or proposing new academic programs that begin to work their way through the university system, eventually go up to GA and the Board of Governors and then sometimes sit there for months or years.  The General Administration and the Board of Governors have adopted a new academic plan approval process and we are in the process of having a similar plan on campus where we prioritize these programs as they emerge up front. 

I am also very excited about our new University Scholars Program where this fall we will be naming 20 early to mid career scholars across campus represented in all ten colleges and honoring them with the title of University Faculty Scholar and a significant pay raise for a period of five years.  Growing your faculty numbers has several elements here. One is obviously recruiting and bringing new faculty to campus, but just as important is retaining the outstanding faculty that we have.

Several of these initiatives are pretty sizable.  We are going to have to put a lot of time into discussing these throughout the fall especially, but into the spring as well. As many of you know,  I have asked Dr. Larick to step aside as Dean of the Graduate School for a year and focus on helping me implement several of these initiatives, specifically the College of Science, the Faculty Excellence Program, the Academic Program Effectiveness and Efficiency, and the Academic Program Planning Process. We will get into details in each of these areas in the coming months, but if you have any questions I’m happy to address them.

Questions and Comments

Senator Juliana Nfah Abbenyi: Speaking of the University Scholars Program, some professors feel that the university has left them out.

Provost Arden stated that as the Chancellor pointed out, because of four years with no pay raises we have some very significant equity issues across campus in all of our ranks.  We have very significant salary compression, we have Assistant Professors earning more than Associate Professors.  It’s hard to bite off of all these issues at once.  We have determined that recruiting new faculty through the Chancellor’s Faculty Excellence Program was a high  priority and recognizing and awarding high achieving mid career faculty was going to be the next program that we put into place.  I don’t disagree with you at all that we need a mechanism of recognizing and rewarding many of our senior professors, but we are going to just have to wait a little bit of time on that.  Also, many of those individuals are at the point in their career where they are eligible for major national recognition as well.  The concept that we need to recognize those earlier on in their career because from an institutional perspective when you recruit an Assistant Professor and they are a super star and you put five or six years into them and they put five or six years into this institution and they get tenure, then all of a sudden they are recruited into another institution in a couple more years, which is a huge loss to this institution, both a financial loss and an intellectual loss.  That is happening all too often, so we really do need to retain those individuals on campus and then we begin to look at all the elements of that faculty.

6. Introduction of the New Senators
Chair Kellner stated, one of my favorite phrases is that you are all now members of the coalition of the willing.  Coalition of the willing you may recall is precisely that, and it seems to me that in universities there is a coalition of the willing, the people who come back for job after job, committee after committee, running for Senate over and over again and it’s maybe 15% of the faculty who do the governing stuff of the university to sit on the committees who get made fun of for doing all of that.  So I want to begin with the most willing of the coalition of the willing, the four individuals who are returning to the Senate after a period away and they are:

Former Chair of the Faculty, Professor of Public Administration, Dennis Daley; Lloyd Fleisher, Alumni Outstanding Professor of Pharmacology; Beverly Tyler, who served here in the first year of Dennis Daley’s chair-ship, Associate Professor of Management, Innovation & Entrepreneurship Management, and finally Paul Williams, Professor of Accounting.

New Senators are: Harald Ade – Professor of Physics, Nancy Penrose – Professor of English, Richard Spontak, Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Michael Devetsikiotis – Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, James Knopp – Professor of Biochemistry, Lucian Lucia – Associate of Forest Biomaterial, Patricia Morgado – Associate Professor of Architecture, Derek Aday (absent) – Associate Professor of Biology, Jim Knowles – Teaching Assistant Professor of English, Lucy Bradley – Extension Specialist for Urban Horticulture

7. Senate Discussions
Chair Kellner stated that one of the things that came up last year was the Senate wants to have more focused discussion and more preparation for meetings. We are going to discuss two separate issues. 

The Senators were asked to prioritize (1,2,3, with 1 being most interested) the topics on a handout titled “Topics of Interest.”

Chair Kellner spoke briefly on each topic.

(1). The issue of athletics and academics came up from Secretary Sawyers and this is something that we agreed today to keep our eye on. 

(2). Distance education is a an issue that is going to become even more pressing, I think as various kinds of collaborative system-wide developments take place, and so the old question is, when we hear from Tom Miller, Head of DELTA it’s always an interesting discussion of how many courses in the university, what percentage of them have some online component.  A huge number growing all the times.

(3). International Programs – What is the purpose of these programs?  Are they business operations?  Is there a purpose here to educate and inform the students of North Carolina about the world or various other possibilities?

(4). The issue of transfers.  This is an issue that the Faculty Assembly wants to be talking about under the issue of articulation.  

(5). One of the things that is not on this list is the enrollment plan, which is closely linked to a number of different points, one of which is the assumption that a larger number of transfers can be smoothly brought at the third and fourth year and so issues then arise of the background, the separation, the general education status of this and how do you make NC State students out of people that you bring in the second and third year.

(6). If you don’t have money or if you want to use your money in strategic ways to develop stardom what can you do for the faculty?  What kind of forms of recognition are there?  Do we get a pen at 25 years the way that staff does?

(7). Benefits – I remember some rather bitter and painful and passionate meetings with the Senate about six years ago over benefits and their discontent.

(8). Coordination within the UNC system – With matters like “academic first”, do you know the term “academic first”, do you know this plan from the Board of Governors, which is about a year or a year and a half old now, which involves coordination among the institutions in the system and a number of them has to do with technical things like satisfactory academic progress and that sort of thing, but some of them have to do with more academic coordination.  How should NC State participate in this? 

(9). Faculty governance – How do we get more participation and attention than we have now?   I hope that the Governance Committee is looking at various websites and will bring to the Executive Committee some ideas about how to improve things.  We cannot expect miracles and we may just wish to maintain what we have because I believe the coalition and willing is a fairly finite number of people.

(10). The challenge of Centennial Campus.  Centennial Campus is a fabulous asset of this university.  The problem of integrating the two campuses remains large in my opinion, so I have asked the Resources and Environment Committee to consider things that might improve that.  With the completion of the Hunt Library we seem to hope that all problems will be solved, but they won’t. How can we bring the two campuses together?

(11). What has been the impact of the recession on NC State? How will this affect the strategic planning process? Main concern here is the unequal loss of faculty and staff positions over the past few years.

(12). How will Tom Ross or the new BOG's Strategic Planning change or delay things?

Senators proposed the following additional discussion items:

(1). How can we encourage faculty involvement and participation in administrative decisions?.

(2). Need to address low graduation rates and internal transfers – How do students get from struggling here on campus to succeeding?

(3). Programs that are increasing now are not getting additional resources.

(4). Promoting student success by increase work by student—faculty and students  need to work harder to promote student success.

(5). What can we do to improve the work/family balance of faculty and staff? For example,  bringing a university-run daycare to campus.

(6). How can we provide other benefits to faculty such as tuition waivers for the children of faculty and staff.

(7). Retirements and people hired away from us that we have not been able to replace.

Questions to ask Mike Mullen

How will transfers from outside the university and internally, specifically from the First Year College, be handled?

How does ASA expect to get faculty buy-in to the various student retention efforts?

Is there still serious talk of a General College and/or a General Studies Degree?

Will Physical Education along with the Arts and Music be returned to CHASS?

What do you see as potential strengths and potential pitfalls within your division? 

What are your strategies for raising graduation and retention rates?

8. Adjournment
A motion passed to adjourn the meeting at 4:40: p.m.

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