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Minutes of the Senate of the Faculty

October 10, 1999

Chair Laurenzo called the meeting to order at 7:07 and introduced the Chancellor.

Present: J. Atkins, J. Aubrey, B. Avery, M. Baggett, B. Barkdoll, T. Bates, A. Bomba, J. Bradley, L. Bush, G. Buskes, J. Cassidy, W. Cleland, C. Eagles, D. Feller, D. Graves, S. Hargrove, L. Harper, S. Husni, F. Laurenzo, P. Malone, M. Overby, J. F. Payne, L. Pittman, J. Reidy, J. Rimoldi, K. Sabol, R. Schroeder, L. Smith, M. Tew, Jay Watson, J. Williamson, C. Williford

Absent: B. Barrios, A. Canty, B. Choinski, R. Dale, M. Deighton, R. Ethridge, V. Frierson-Adams, *P. Goggans, L. Hanshaw, *J. Martin, W. Mayer, T. McCarty, *K. McKee, C. Mullen, J. Murray, J. Parcher, *E. Payne, J.S. Payne, K. Raber, *T. Ray, W. Rayburn, *M. Slattery, C. Taylor, C. Walker, John Watson, R. Westmoreland

The Chancellor began by addressing the importance of the Faculty Senate. He looks to the Senate for advice, guidance, constructive criticism, and vital service on university committees. But, in the end, the Chancellor reports to the College Board.

Undergraduate enrollment is increasing, from 7,946 in 1995 to 8,994 in 1999. Graduate enrollment is down, from 1,774 in 1995 to 1,445 in 1999. UM graduated 107 Ph. D.'s in 1999, 85 in 1995. International student enrollment is also down.

Assistant professor salaries have moved from $40,081 in 1995 to $45,120 in 1999. Associate professor salaries have moved from $47,734 in 1995 to $56,029 in 1999. Salaries for professors have changed form $62,240 in 1995 to $72,737 in 1999. The Chancellor's goal is the Southern Universities Group (SUG) mid-range.

In 1996 the library budget was two million dollars. Today it is three million, two hundred thousand dollars. The endowment has grown from 1.9 million dollars to 32 million dollars. December first will mark an historic occasion as the library adds its one-millionth book.

This year, $200,000 has been allocated for upgrading computers introduced during the "computer on every desk" project. Eighty-five faculty computers have been replaced. The effort includes training. Some staff computers are also being upgraded, primarily for staff working with the new SAP software.

The university has received funds from NSF to support Internet 2. Four million dollars has been donated for the Center for Academic Computing. The gift will support renovation of classrooms and laboratories in Weir Hall, software, and a maintenance fund.

The new SAP software, an outcome of Project Discover, will go on-line on November 1 with Accounting, Purchasing, Physical Plant, and Property Control switching over. By February 1, 2000, all departments on campus will be using the new software.

After 40 years of "deferred maintenance", there is about one-hundred million dollars worth of construction currently underway. Construction can be expected to continue for the next 3 years.

Research funding has grown: 1995, $27.4 M - 1996, $18 M - 1997, $20 M - 1998, $34 M. The 1997 - 1998 growth is a 66% increase.

Faculty can observe landscaping underway on campus. In most cases, this represents projects earmarked by donors.

About $38 M is being budgeted for Academic Support this year. The university's endowment is two hundred million dollars, ranking UM 20th in the nation in endowment dollars per student for public universities. The Commitment to Excellence campaign will continue through 2000, and will surpass its two hundred million dollar goal. About $175,000 is available this year for Associate's and Partner's funds.

Of the 41 most recent administrative searches, 28 were national, 5 were internal, 5 were internal because no vacancy existed, in 2 cases no search was conducted, and in 1 case no search was conducted due to reorganization. There is no written policy regarding the choice of a national vs. internal search. The practice has been that the Vice Chancellor makes the choice, unless the position is for a Vice Chancellor, in which case the Chancellor makes the choice. The Chancellor is open to developing a policy where there is a concern.

Regarding faculty leadership, the faculty should have leadership in every aspect of the university and should have a dominant role in academic affairs. Faculty were heavily involved in the SACS accreditation, NCAA certification, and the Phi Beta Kappa initiative was faculty-driven.

There are remarkable opportunities. There has been quantifiable progress. The university is moving in a positive direction. And this is receiving national notice. Donna Shillelah, a past president of Wisconsin, has spoken publicly about the positive things happening at UM.

The floor was then opened for questions.

Q: What about faculty startup grants? A: The Office of Research is now on "hard" funding. Using indirect funding from grants being received, we are moving to establish a fund.

Q: At what level will the search guidelines apply? A: We can discuss titles of administrative positions as we work on search process guidelines.

Q: There is concern about academic administrators being appointed without searches. The faculty voice is not being heard. Is there good faith with respect to shared governance? A: There was a mistake made this summer. The appointments were rescinded pending a search. An internal search is recognized as a legitimate search. A national search last year for the Dean of Liberal Arts failed.

Q: There has been no external Dean in Liberal Arts for 63 years, except for 1 year. A: We have to consider all the facts involved in a decision. The current state of Liberal Arts is very good.

Q: There is a lack of communication between the Provost and the faculty. We learned of the internal search from the newspaper.

Q: Regarding titles, we now hear about a Vice Chancellor for Research and the Dean of the Graduate School. But in the faculty proposal of two years ago, the title was Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Studies.

Chancellor Khayat summed up: The Faculty Senate Governance Committee will propose a policy regarding searches. We will revisit the position of Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Studies. This meeting has been very helpful. He thanked the Senate for its candor. As a charge to the Senate the Chancellor noted

1) Off-campus instruction. How will it be incorporated into the role of the faculty?

2) Graduate enrollment. What needs to be done to increase graduate enrollment?

3) Post-tenure review. How will we deal with tenure in the future?

The Senate thanked the Chancellor for his remarks.


The minutes of the April 29, 1999, meeting were accepted without revision (M, Bradley; 2d, Reidy). The minutes of the September 9, 1999, meeting were accepted without revision (M, Bradley; 2d, Overby).

Senator Williford reported on the status of elections. Elections are underway for the Sabbatical Leave committee, the Tenure and Promotion Review committee, the Tenure and Promotion Appeals committee, and the Academic Freedom and Faculty Responsibility committee.

Senator Overby reported for the General Academic Affairs committee. The three issues being addressed are: 1) the proposed Honor Code, 2) Post-tenure Review, and 3) Proposed revision to the tenure and promotion guidelines. (These primarily to address research faculty).

Senator Graves reported for the Faculty Governance committee. They are addressing 1) Search policies and procedure, 2) the positions of Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Studies/Graduate Dean, and 3) Patent oversight.

Senator Reidy reported for the Academic Support Affairs committee. They are addressing: 1) the university web page (and they invite suggestions), 2) participation in a workshop on academic corruption in athletics. They are concerned that the Office of Research has lost several key people--most recently the Associate Director of Research, Kathy Sukanek. Since there is no position of Director of Research, the remaining staff is stretched very thin.

Senator Schroeder reported that he University Services committee is looking into the schedule for fraternity rush.Senators noted that while enrollment is rising, the number of teaching faculty has stayed relatively constant (453 in 94-59, 438 in 95-96, 472 in 96-97, and 454 in 97-98). Since "teaching faculty" also includes persons whose primary responsibilities are administrative, the increase in enrollment translates into an increased workload for faculty.

Senator Malone reported for the Finance Committee. The new state health plan has no options, only a single HMO. Currently, almost no Oxford physicians are have signed up for the HMO. Baptist Hospital is not an option with the new HMO.

Senator Malone then presented salary, compensation, and raise comparisons between UM, MSU, and USM, and between UM and a peer universities group. While salaries have become more competitive, UM lags when compensation is considered.

The meeting adjourned at 9:05.