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Minutes, Meeting of the Senate of the Faculty,

February 14, 1997

Chair, Faye Gilbert, called the Faculty Senate to order at 2:05 p.m., February 14, in Conner 122.


Billy Barrios, Kim Beason, Anne Bomba, Don Cheek, Jean Cheek, Felice Coles, Sumali Conlon, H.C. Cunningham, Ann Fisher-Wirth, Faye Gilbert, Tim Hall, Robert Haws, John Johnson, Edward Komara, Fred Laurenzo, Fannye Love, Phil Malone, Tom Marshall, Marilyn Mendolia, Harry Owens, Ted Ownby, Shyam Prasad, T.J. Ray, Sharon Schreiber,Warren Steel, JoAnn Stefani,Paula Temple, Bryn Vaaler, Kirk Wakefield, Robert Westmoreland, Mark Wilder, Clint Williford, John Winkle


Ben Banahan, Robert Cook, Carol Dale, Bob Dorsey, David Graves, Sophia Gray, Stacy Holmes, Glenn Hopkins, Jay K. Johnson, Dave Nichols, James Payne, Jim Reidy, Natalie Schroeder, William Scott, Peter Sukanek, Julie Walton, Christy Wyandt.

Prior Notification of Absence Given:

Maurice Eftink, R. McLaughlin, Bill Rayburn, Stacy Rodgers, Daniel Schlenk, Ed Sisson

ANNOUNCEMENTS FROM THE CHAIR: Chair Gilbert welcomed Chancellor Khayat.

MID-YEAR UPDATE by CHANCELLOR KHAYAT: Chancellor Khayat emphasized that he is glad to be Chancellor of the University. He wanted the faculty to know that we are stronger than we sometimes think. He referred to his philosophy of working together with the university community to achieve the goals we mutually agree upon. He feels we have achieved positive results. He also feels we have some major challenges and incredible opportunities. The Chancellor outlined essential ingredients for success: people, money, and a (vision) of where we are going. He stressed the importance of enrollment from a practical standpoint, since it drives state funding and affects self-generated funding (bookstore, food service, and housing). About 80 percent of our budget comes from state support and self-generated funds. Enrollment is up 2.8%, to 10,280. Attrition is about the same as for the previous year. He hoped that in the time he serves as Chancellor, enrollment will surly reach 11,500. Enrollment affects support long term through increases in the alumni base. We have about 70,000 living alumni, and produce about 1,500 a year. He referred to the focus on increasing the number of academically gifted students, stressing the creation of the McDonald Barksdale College. The Phi Beta Kappa (initiative) has resulted in a dramatic increase in the number of gifted students who have applied or are being admitted to the university. This year we had 36 National Merit Finalists, more than in the 1996 freshman year class than at Georgetown university. Last year, we had 180 students on campus for Scholar's Day. This year, we had 307. In the freshman class, we have 70 students with ACT's of 32 , or better. He has asked a major donor to fund a total of 100 additional honor scholarships over the next several years. We have been visiting junior colleges and high schools, and he appreciates the faculty's efforts. He referred to Larry Ridgewood, the new Director of Financial Aid, and the challenges faced by his office. Applications have doubled in the past four years, while staff and equipment were not increased. They are now being upgraded. We have conducted eight workshops on financial aid. Eighty percent of our students are on some kind of aid, a typical number nationally. He has worked on two national committees: the National Financial Aid Committee and the President's Literacy Panel. In student support and advising, John Winkle is taking the lead to get in place the national model for student advising. Two hundred students with ACT's of 30 or better will be divided into groups of ten for faculty advising. Rush is being moved to October. This will help change the public's perception that the social system drives what we do and will give the students a chance to get settled. His mail on this has been ninety-nine percent positive. Regarding Friday classes, Carolyn Staton and Gerald Walton are scheduling them. This is a statement that we are here first and foremost for academic purposes. He referred to the enhancement of the teaching and learning environment and a classroom upgrade study involving T.J. Ray. He has talked with the legislature about improving salaries for our custodial staff. Eating and drinking have been banned from classrooms around the campus, which has generated some negative mail. There are a number of building improvements going on: heating and AC for Shoemaker and a physiology lab upgrade; a fund raiser for Old Chemistry; and other changes planned for Bondurant and Bishop. At this time that so much construction is underway, he felt it is time to begin changes in the culture regarding traffic and parking to create a pedestrian-friendly campus. He went on to describe planned work for the renovation of Conner and Ventress Halls, as well as renovation of the Old Gymnasium and the Lyceum. "The entire inner campus is going to be in a state of congestion, confusion, and frustration for the next three or four years.....when we hit the year 2000, we will have a transformed, updated, state-of-the-art, freshly-painted, beautiful campus."

Regarding state funding, Dr. Mullins has been working with the Legislature. "... this is the year for education." The Senate and the House are supportive. We have been told that there will be a three percent salary increase for each of the next three years. He asked that the universities have the flexibility to reward productivity versus making across-the-board raises. Funding increases are to be made to cover the increased operating costs for the new and enlarged Conner facilities.

Regarding bond issues, the Biological Field Station will receive $1.5 million; the Lyceum, $4 million (for total of $11.5 million); and Faser, Old Chemistry, Johnson Commons, and the educational gym, $2.5 million. The new building next to Conner will be named Holmon Hall. It is a $24 million project, $14 million from the state and $10 million from private sources, including $3 million from Henry Holmon and the Kroeze family. The Honors House will be renamed the Street House after George Street who served the university for many years. It will serve as a faculty house and is a $400,000 project. Ventress construction will begin immediately - a $978,000 project. The Engineering Science Building has been completed. The Old Gymnasium center is a $7 million project. The Sam Lawrence Art Gallery addition is being provided from that collection. The Chapel Project is continuing, with $1.3 million of $2 million pledged or donated. It will be located west of the library and have a bell tower. He hopes to turn the parking lot into a green space complementing the Circle and Grove. The Food Service management Institute will be built on the road behind the Coliseum. "We will have $40 million in renovation on this campus during the next four years, and we hope much of it will go to the interior of classrooms, to the equipment of classrooms, and the support services that you all need.

We will have a new budget process this year. We are operating now with a $1.3 million budget deficit that is being covered by funds available on a one time basis from unfilled positions. "When we begin the budget year of 1997, we will go into that year with a balanced budget, and we will live by that budget." He described the process by which university administrators would present budget needs to the Chancellor, the Provost, and the Chief Financial Officer. All new expenditures will go through the University Planning Council.

Referring to the enhancement of the image of the university, he said that a major donor and supporter of athletics has provided funds. The plan is to engage a highly competent national advertising company to present the real image of The University of Mississippi to the world. He cited increases, since 1991, in enrollment and employment of African-Americans at the university.

The capital Campaign, discuss by Gloria Kellum and Brian Reithel last month, will begin November 6, 1998. The goal is $150 million for academic support. We will be building an endowment that has (already) reached $144 million. Private gifts totaled $25.3 million last year including the $5.4 million gift from Mr. and Mrs. Barksdale. Giving for the first six months of this year has been $13.8 million, and we are looking for a major gift by July. He cited the Phi Beta Kappa initiative as one reason for the strong fund raising and recognized the strong support (for Phi Beta Kappa) from the Presidents of Millsaps, Swanee, and Rhodes College. The Foundation Board will be having a retreat to plan the Phi Beta Kappa campaign. As a part of this effort, Liberal Arts will be in the spotlight over the next two years. The Ventress Order has been organized to recognize support of Liberal Arts. This is similar to the Lamar, Gaila, and Woods orders at the other schools and involves a $5,000 gift. In the first four months, twenty-seven people have joined. Also, $660,000 was earmarked to complete the endowment for the Faulkner studies. For the library, we have prepared a major proposal for the Foundation which he believes will result in a large gift he hopes to announce in July.

In closing his prepared remarks, the Chancellor emphasized his commitment to the university and called upon faculty to make the same commitment in all our work. He recited a quote from the writer, William Alexander Percy about the deep influence of faculty upon their students beyond their transmitting of specific knowledge. He also recalled the influence and example of one of his college instructors, Margaret Moore. He expressed the hope we can make the same investment in our students.

The Chancellor then answered questions. The $1.3 million used to make up the budget deficit derived from unfilled nonacademic positions and commodity and contractual service lines for staff. He agreed that it is bad to go into a year with unfilled positions. "We ought to have what we need." Regarding a deadline for the Phi Beta Kappa process, there will be a possible visit by a team in 1998. If this goes well, there will be a vote by this team in 1999, and again if all goes favorably, a vote by the entire membership council in the year 2000. A question was raised about the conversion of a course from required to elective status for School of education students. There had been some press on this in the Daily Mississippian. Senator Love responded that the change had been discussed for some time to provide electives for the education majors. The Chancellor added that the education faculty had provided a rationale explanation for the change. Asked about the image enhancement effort, the Chancellor said that everything was on the table, but the name "Ole Miss." He indicated that the consultants will come back with a plan and a budget in about two weeks.

Regarding the schedule for next fall, he and Pete Boone want to move homecoming to a Saturday afternoon. A concern was raised about pressures for off-campus and continuing education courses affecting standards and the possible use of graduate students for 300 and 400 level courses. The Chancellor responded that, concerning off-campus teaching responsibilities, he felt we don't have a policy in place. He will ask the Provost about this. He asserted that we are a four campus university now. When faculty hire on, they should know what the responsibilities of the faculty are. The Chancellor concluded his remarks referring to a "thumbs up" column recognition in the Clarion Ledger, the Visions magazine for the School of Accountancy, and discussions to acquaint industry (Peavy Electronics) with research here at Ole Miss.

NEW BUSINESS: An amendment to the Constitution (Article III, Section 2) was discussed. This amendment subdivides the election of faculty senators from School of Liberal Arts into three departmental groups. These are the same three groups used for election to the Undergraduate Council. The motion was made, seconded, and passed on a voice vote. This amendment will be presented to the general faculty at the May meeting. Thus the next faculty Senate Election will be under the existing constitution.

Chair Gilbert presented the proposal for a consulting policy and the response from the Senate's general Academic Affairs Committee. She asked for discussion and approval of the report to the Provost. There were a number of comments: a tone that seems critical about faculty consulting; questions about consulting after hours and on the weekend and the relationship with off-campus and possibly weekend classes; definitions of consulting and activities such as artistic expression and educational training; concerns about losing flexibility in setting our work hours. The report on the proposal was approved by voice vote.

Reference was also made to a memo from Dr. Walton announcing a study of the policy on evening and off-campus classes. Chair Gilbert indicated she has not reviewed it yet. However, the consensus was that the faculty should be involved (in shaping the policy). Chair Gilbert remarked that a committee of the Senate should address the issue.

ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE CHAIR: Chair Gilbert announced that due to the Spring Break, the Senate would meet on March 21 instead of the usual date, March 14.

OLD BUSINESS: The January minutes were approved.

After a voice vote giving approval, Chair Faye Gilbert adjourned the meeting at 3:36 p.m.