Chair Faye Gilbert called the Senate to order at 2:05 p.m. in Conner Hall, Room 123.
Ben Banahan, Billy Barrios, Kim Beason, Anne Bomba, Don Cheek, Jean Cheek, Sumali Conlon, Robert Cook, H.C. Cunningham, Carol Dale, Bob Dorsey, Maurice Eftink, Faye Gilbert, David Graves, Tim Hall, Robert Haws, Stacy Holmes, Glenn Hopkins, Edward Komara, Fannye Love, Fred Laurenzo, Phil Malone, Tom Marshall, R. McLaughlin, Marilyn Mendolia, Harry Owens, Ted Ownby, Shyam Prasad, Jim Reidy, Stacy Rodgers, Sharon Schreiber, Daniel Schlenk, Warren Steel, JoAnn Stefani, Peter Sukanek, Paula Temple, Ed Sisson, Julie Walton, R. Westmoreland, Mark Wilder, Clint Williford, John Winkle
Ann Fisher-Wirth, Sophia Gray , Jay K. Johnson, Dave Nichols, James Payne , T.J. Ray, Bill Rayburn, William Scott, Natalie Schroeder, Bryn Vaaler, Kirk Wakefield
Prior Notification of Absence Given:
Felice Coles, John Johnson , Christy Wyandt
ANNOUNCEMENTS FROM THE CHAIR: Senator Gilbert introduced the new Vice Chancellor for Student Life, Dr. Richard Mullendore
ADDRESS BY VICE CHANCELLOR FOR STUDENT LIFE, DR. RICHARD MULLENDORE: Vice Chancellor Mullendore began his remarks talking about the challenges that academia faces from public and legislative demands for better service and outsourcing. He then stressed the potential for improvement and reviewed some problems we face with respect to first year students. Based a large ratio of upper to lower classmen, we have an "old" student population. Since 1991, the retention of freshmen, who remain to become seniors had dropped from 76% to 71%. His office will survey nonreturning first year students to find out why they left. Student retention has become a factor in rating college performance and guiding parents in selecting colleges. Vice Chancellor Mullendore stressed that "we're hungry...we're student driven... retention is a way of treating people..." Reducing standards has nothing to do with retention." He pointed out the need for upbeat student orientation. Some students are still shopping. Social and recreational facilities in good repair are important. The Turner complex is in poor shape. $500,000 will of renovation will be made this coming year. Admissions will be across the street from her Turner Center. The Student Union is the "living room": of the campus. It needs a facelift. He has closed three residence halls and put money back into renovation. He feels we need specialty residence areas for smoke free, wellness, etc. Today's students also want more private rooms. He wants to create a community, including upper and lower classmen, instead of isolating freshmen. He asserted that quality individual academic advising, including that outside class, was the single best predictor of student success. Regarding Rush, the plan is to wait until the sixth week and do it over two to three weekends (away and open football dates), not during the week. Also, the rules need to be simplified. He advocated a US101 freshman experience course (3 hours and graded, 25 student maximum) using the best faculty and incorporating journals and college events. Vice Chancellor Mullendore feels that the university has shown a "can do" attitude, putting programs in place and is on the verge of doing great things in a short time.
OLD BUSINESS: the September minutes were approved.
NEW BUSINESS: Chair Gilbert indicated that three senators have been named to search committees.
A motion on tuition waivers was presented. There were questions about to whom the waivers would apply, for example for undergraduates or for graduate students and medical students. A question was raised about what difference it would make, if two parents were employed. What is the negative? If the State offers this to university employees, would other state agencies want the same? There is a rationale for making this a benefit for university personnel who are paid less than other state employees. The motion was passed on a voice vote.
A motion was presented to expand the Barnard Professorships. Senator Gilbert explained that the consensus in the previous year's Faculty Senate Executive Committee had been to expand the Barnard Professorships to include the recognition of excellent teaching as well as research. It was felt that a separate award should not be created that would lack the prestige of the Barnard award. Various questions were raised. Suppose there were an associate professor who is an outstanding teacher. If the person were good enough to have a Barnard Professorship, why would he not have had early promotion? Questions were raised about getting outside recommendations and departmental representatives who would serve on the committee. A point was made that, if the Barnard is not renewable, then it would OK to have Barnard professors on the committee. It was also felt by some that, if excellent teachers were "put into the same pot" with excellent research faculty, the former would not be recognized. Senator Gilbert stressed that the new criteria required the awardee to be good at both teaching and research.
Senator Cook submitted a substitute motion that supports the expansion of the Barnards, but rejects the new criteria, effectively keeping the Barnard as a recognition for research excellence. The substitute motion was passed by hand vote, 26 to 8.
Senator Malone raised a point regarding the Faculty Senate's providing names to the Chancellor to make final selections of faculty representatives. He felt that the Senate should directly make the choice. Chair Gilbert deferred discussion at this time.
Concerns were raised regarding the "overhead study committee." Chair Gilbert raised the concern that a decision or another report would be released before the committee report.
Chair Gilbert adjourned the meeting at 3:31 p.m.