February 8, 2005
Present: Chair Daley, Secretary Weiner, Parliamentarian Corbin, Chair-Elect Allen; Senators Batra, Bernhard, Blank, Branson, Brownie, Bruck, Clark, Estes, Fahmy, Fauntleroy, Hanley-Bowdoin, Hooper, Kasal, Kellner, Khosla, Martin, Matthews, Middleton, Miller, Robarge, B. Smith, R. Smith, Tetro, Warren, Wessels, Young
Excused: Interim Provost Nielsen; Senators Fikry, Moore
Absent: Senators Baynes, Bitting, Blair, Johnson, Krotee, McRae, Stein
Visitors: Katie Perry, Senior Vice Provost; Frank Weedon, Athletics; Benny Benton, Editor, Bulletin
1. Call to Order
Chair Dennis Daley called the eleventh meeting of the fifty-first session of the North Carolina State University Faculty Senate to order at 3:00 p.m.
2. Welcome and Announcements
Chair Daley welcomed Senators and Guests.
Chair Daley noted that the Emerging Issues Forum is generating some very good publicity for the university along with some good sessions.
Chair Daley stated that he emailed the senators regarding the book from the Board of Trustees bringing to their attention the Development Committee’s policy change on naming rights (policy #03.33.2). While he has no objections to the policy change it was not sent through the faculty senate. He plans to raise questions regarding that issue at the Board of Trustees meeting. He thinks that the naming of buildings and special programs is something of concern to the faculty.
Regulations on Professors of Distinction were announced at the previous meeting REG.05.20.17. Chair Daley stated that he has not heard any objections to this regulation therefore he will notify the Office of the Provost to proceed with the implementation of that regulation.
3. Approval of the Minutes, Meeting No. 10 January 25, 2005
The motion passed to adopt the minutes as corrected.
4. Remarks from Senior Vice Provost Katie Perry
Senior Vice Provost Perry stated that the Provost and Chancellor would attend the Board of Governors meeting in Wilmington later this week where the campus initiated tuition increase will be discussed. This will include all campuses that have proposed CITI.
The Alumni Center Ground Breaking was a very nice event. Senior Vice Provost Perry stated that it was nice to sit in the audience with the new chancellor. She feels that he will bring a warmth and vitality to such events as these.
Comments from Senator Young
“Just briefly I would like to commend to the faculty’s attention the excellent service of our campus bookstore rapidly resolving a disrupting situation in my class that was caused by two off-campus bookstores. The two off-campus bookstores would not resolve their own problems to help out my students in any kind of timely manner however our campus bookstore did an overnight service. In addition to that, our campus bookstore actually under-priced some of the off-campus competitors for the books that I use in my class by a pretty fair percentage. I was remarkably impressed by the service that I received from our campus bookstore and totally dismayed by what our off-campus bookstores do to our students such as selling them the wrong books, selling them partial books, marking up over the prices of the campus bookstore, and not resolving the situation. “
5. Issues of Concern
Senator Middleton stated that according to University Planning and Analysis more than 67% of our students graduate after six years. He does not feel that is satisfactory and finds it very troubling.
Senator Bruck wants to know if the quality of the students is so high, why indeed are we faced with this reality.
Senator Tetro stated that she thinks the national average is a very low number but believes that there are many institutions across the nation that graduates them much higher than that.
Senator Fahmy noted that Chapel Hill is much higher than we are.
Senator Kellner stated that one of the issues is the kind of students that the university has. “How many of the students are employed and how employed are they? There is a second issue, whether there are things built into the curricula structure that prevent people from finishing on time. We have discovered such an issue in the English Department with regard to the Masters Programs. In which case with the pace of doing a Masters thesis it is extraordinarily rare for anyone to finish in four semesters. In so far as the undergraduate level there are curricula roadblocks to finishing in nine semesters. The other issues are the kind of students we have, and what and whether the university wants to say we don’t want those kinds of students, we want the kind that enter as freshmen and move right through like Duke, Chapel Hill and other schools that can get students through in four years. “
Senator Blank stated that 50% of the students in the Forestry Department have transferred from somewhere else and 50% of the students that start the Forestry Program leave. “When they leave and have accumulated a certain number of hours in forestry there are a lot of programs that don’t pick up those hours so they end up making up new hours. Most of our students that transfer in transfer after their sophomore year at which point they still have approximately three years of course work to go through to get out of the program. I think that we have a lot of factors. The kinds of students that we have, the fact that half of my students worked thirty hours a week to be able to be here, etc.”
Senator Hooper noted that there are a number of students who are married with children and work a full time job. There is another kind of student who has a drive to learn more so in addition to the courses that pertain to their curriculum they go out and take selective courses in the university.
Senior Vice Provost Perry stated that as the progress toward degree regulation becomes mandatory it would cover a lot of these issues because students could be gauged against their own plan. “So if you are one of those people who plan to take six years then we will be able to say for ourselves that we are meeting the needs of these students. There are a lot of reasons that are not all negative. Thomas Conway would be the right contact to discuss this further.”
Senator Hanley-Bowdoin stated that a lot of the students try to work in areas that are relevant to their career goals. “If you don’t have that research experience and graduate in four years you may not have an easy time finding a position whereas that student takes that fifth or sixth year to graduate has more than just classes on their resume and are much more desirable and will have a better opportunity when they leave. “
Senator Tetro stated that the progress toward degree was initiated two years ago. “Each student along with their advisors is going to be required to have a plan in the system. They are going to have to submit courses and the advisor is going to have to approve those courses and the students will have to stick with that plan so that they will be taking courses that will count toward their degree. The dilemma there is that you can’t make it stronger. It is twelve hours per semester, which is still not 120 hours in four years. “
Senator Clark stated that in the past ten years that he has been here he has steadily seen a decline in success rate of graduate students. Part of it is competition with other institutions. He encouraged the committee to strongly look at both graduate and undergraduate students.
Chair Daley assigned the issue to the Academic Policy Committee.
Senator Brownie discussed a letter sent from the Director of Athletics to the Coaches regarding high expectations for student athletes and their classroom performance. He said that he would make a copy available to attach to the minutes.
Academic Policy Committee
Senator Bruck reported that Dean Sowell from the Graduate School has been invited to the Academic Policy Committee’s next meeting to address the issues of TOEFL and faculty admission to graduate PhD examinations. The meeting will be held in POE Hall at 3:30 p.m.
Resources and Environment Committee
Senator Bernhard reported that the committee would meet next Tuesday at 3 p.m. in the small conference room to discuss where they plan to go with several issues. He requested that members of the committee report on what is happening in their respective committees.
Meeting in Chapel Hill between the Executive Committees and Provosts
Chair Daley reported that the meeting focused pretty much entirely on the academic Bill of Rights and how to deal with it appropriately. He has talked with Andy Willis and as soon as he has everything on the new legislators he plans to send them a memo. Chair Daley noted that Chapel Hill has the luxury of having half the legislators as graduates. They will be contacting their alumni over there. Each table discussed some other issues privately, the things facing research universities within the UNC system.
Chair Daley adjourned the meeting at 4 p.m.