1998-1999 - February 24, 1999
Faculty Senate Minutes
February 24, 1999
Present: John Alexander, Francois Amar, Bruce Barber, Dan Belknap, Tai Chen, Steve Cohn, Ted Coladarci, Chris Cronan, James Fastook, Ed Ferguson, Ivan Fernandez, Mac Gray, Richard Brucher for Michael Grillo, Dan Harrison, Marc Girard for Knud Hermansen, Jim Horan, Richard Judd, Justin Kelleher Roger King, Irv Kornfield, Janice Kristo, Phil Locke, Mary Malone, Kathleen March, James McConnon, Henry Metcalf, Bruce Nicholson, Harlan Onsrud, Hemant Pendse, Connie Perry, Eric Peterson, Wesley Petteway, Alan Rosenwasser, Thomas Sandford, Jane Smith, Owen Smith, Kristin Sobolik, Hayden Soule, Gloria Vollmers, Diane Haslett for Gail Werrbach. Elizabeth Bicknell for Therese Shipps, Judy Kuhns-Hastings for Mary Ellen Symanski,
Absent: Paul Bauschatz, Tony Brinkley, Mary Ellen Camire, Robert Cobb, Steve Colburn, George Criner, Lee Davis, Dan Dwyer, Ray Fort, Michael Greenwood, Tim Griffin, Fred Irons, Mel Johnson, Leonard Kass, Alan Kimball, Cynthia Mahmood, Kyriacos Markides, Jim McClymer, Tina Passman, Paula Petrik, Steve Sader, Sydney Thomas, Ione Hunt Vonherbing, Judy Walker, Anotole Wieck.
Vice President Gloria Vollmers called the meeting to order at 3:15 PM.
II. Approval of minutes. Minutes for the January meeting were approved with the change of 900 acres to 9.6 (Montessori School)
Self-evaluation event for faculty senate will be held on April 30, 1999.
AUBG/UMaine relationship: committee established.
BOT representative nominations are due by March 1 to President Symanski.
Dawkins lecture scheduled for 2/25 has been cancelled.
Additional announcement: VP Vollmers got married on February 14.
The agenda was modified to address Steve Cohn’s proposal for missed-class policy and to include jury duty. Proposal was made by K. Hermansen and approved for inclusion by consensus.
IV. Questions of administrators: There were no questions.
V. Guest Presentation
John Gregory, IT Director unable to attend.
Robert Duringer presented on the retirement community. He suggested addressing topic on its merits, not possible site. Handouts on marketing survey results provided information on how the plan got started. The survey showed large amount of interest by potential residents. Construction of 100 cottages and some assisted living units (900-1100 sq. ft.) would be done over several years.
Letter of interest was sent out recently to this area. Landscape architecture firm will be retained after hearing concerns of local people.
Discussion: Belknap asked about the effect on our statewide relationship, e.g. giving away land. The project should not have gone to BOT without more discussion. Grillo asked what would be the title of the community? He was concerned about the affiliation of the University of Maine’s name with future problems that might arise. Duringer says development concept has 2 partners. They would put up $2 million as start-up capital. They would hire architect to develop the community and would start marketing and pre-sale. Ground breaking could start around Sept. 2000, with 70% unit’s presale. At that time line of credit would have been established to begin paying off loan. Grillo repeated question regarding having this be run by an outside entity. Duringer said this is being done by prestigious institutions around the U.S. B. Nicholson noted that this topic was a focus on the news. UWA and UVA were featured. Paul Locke wished for clarification on exact land required. Duringer said 20–30 acres. Kuhn-Hastings asked when programs supposedly connected would be contacted. Duringer said Dean Eilers had spoken with the Director of the School of Nursing (Shipps). Kuhns-Hastings noted there had been concerns expressed by the Director. R. King noted this was to go to BOT in March. Robert Duringer said that if there were substantive questions, it would not go to BOT in March. There is developer interested in Kelly Road area. UM must get in or out of market in next 120–150 days. Surprise was expressed that the university is not keeping up with its own physical plant and is willing to take on this project. Duringer says UM will not own it – only to be on management board. A question was raised on the property tax issues and comparison to Kelly Road possibility. Cohn asked who EMMC is and what its reputation is. Also does not see any major programmatic strengthening happening. Horan asked to whom the 5500 surveys were sent. L. Bicknell expressed nursing concerns with EMMC as lead agency in the community’s health care. Duringer noted someone from nursing would be on design team. W. Petteway noted the survey was only sent to people who would benefit from it. There is not a measure of resistance or acceptance. Duringer says they are trying to take issues to public forums. Kornfield asked about faculty roles at other universities in decision to set up such a community. Also, in other cases, does income go back to the university rather than to the private sector? Duringer says they do not want Motel 6 type operation. Fastook asked how there would be any moneymaking when costs do not equal gains.
VI. Committee reports:
Library (Grillo): met. Will have a motion in a month regarding Library issues. Will be meeting with Pres. Hoff.
Research & Public Service (Sobolik): Will be presenting motion (see new business) Fact sheet for indirect costs handed out.
Constitution & By-Laws (Vollmers) no report
Committee on Committees (Perry): no report
Academic Affairs (Horan): Committee is discussing issues related to on-line evaluation of faculty by students; 6 nominations for class book so far; met with DLL Bob White/Jim Toner
Finance & Institutional Planning (Metcalf): Will give report on DLL meeting in the near future.
University Environment (Rosenwasser): There is a motion under new business.
BOT (Fernandez): Presque Isle is the site for the next meeting.
VII. Old Business. There was no old business.
VIII. New Business
Kathleen March: Resolution to support Helen Young as Administrative Assistant Emerita
WHEREAS Audrey Helen Young faithfully, frugally, and, at times, fancifully served as administrative assistant, first to the former Council of Colleges and afterward to the Faculty Senate; and
WHEREAS Helen’s service spanned nearly three decades and showed her commitment to the position despite calls to jury, family, and other duties; and
WHEREAS Helen Young diligently saw to the best interests of faculty senators in regard to sugary sustenance; and
WHEREAS Helen worked to provide moral, administrative, and logistical support to the senate presidents she had to patiently train each new academic year;
Therefore, The Faculty Senate of the University of Maine resolves that the title of Administrative Assistant Emerita be awarded to Audrey Helen Young.
Motion passed unanimously.
Alan Rosenwasser: Motion from University Environment Committee.
The ad hoc Diversity Task Force recently presented its Diversity Action Plan to the campus community. This document recommends a number of specific initiatives designed to (a) increase the representation of minority group members among all campus constituencies; (b) promote the inclusion of multicultural and diversity-related issues in the curriculum; and (c) foster a supportive and inclusive campus climate for all members of the University community. At present, a Standing University Diversity Committee is being formed to guide the implementation of these initiatives. While the Faculty Senate does not need to approve the recommendation of the Diversity Action Plan, The Environment Committee felt that the Senate should express its reaction to these recommendations, which are likely to result in substantial changes to various campus policies and practices.
The Faculty Senate endorses the objectives and proposed initiatives described in the Diversity Action Plan, as recently submitted to the campus community by the ad hoc Diversity Task Force. The Faculty Senate further recognizes that these recommended initiatives, particularly in the areas of recruitment and retention of students, staff, and faculty, are focused largely on federally recognized minority groups. The Faculty Senate wishes to affirm its commitment to the larger construct of ‘diversity,’ as defined eloquently in the opening sentences of the Diversity Action Plan: “The term ‘diversity’ encompasses a recognition of an entire spectrum of self- and group-identities … (including) an understanding of difference in age, ethnicity, gender, race, culture, nationality, sexual orientation, religion, class, and physical ability.”
Discussion: Noted that this is not a discussion of the plan itself, but of intent of Diversity Action Plan submitted by ad hoc Diversity Task Force. Nicholson asked how this would affect the plan itself. Rosenwasser: It would not affect the plan itself. Any specific objections to the plan might be addressed through a resolution to that effect. Nicholson cited concerns of faculty that the support of the plan by senate would make it difficult to subsequently effect change. Provost Alexander noted the plan has been seen at the system level, and some modifications based on legal grounds. There were items for which money not available as soon as desired. System task force is meeting 2/25 once again to make more alterations. Some progress has been made, but we need to focus our efforts and make more progress. The Diversity Committee is in final stages of being named. Alexander hopes senate will support the plan. March asked if most recent version were available online.
O. Smith proposed friendly amendment. “The faculty senate endorses the general objectives of the Diversity Action Plan” would be the new starting sentence of the motion.
Nicholson asks for another friendly amendment: “FS endorses the spirit, intent, and general objectives… ”
Grillo noted the university passes a lot of general things, but with no effect.
Eric Peterson moved to return to original wording, removing the friendly amendment.
16 in favor of returning to original wording. 17 opposed. Motion failed. Vote on amended motion followed. All in favor of motion with friendly amendment except 1 abstention.
Motion from the Research and Public Service Committee (Sobolik): Facilitating funded research by endorsing a fairer system of distributing indirect costs collected from granting agencies.
Preface – The Faculty Senate supports the need for the University of Maine to strengthen its research capacity and to remove existing barriers to research enterprises. One identified barrier is the way in which indirect costs from grants are allocated within the University of Maine and the System. The Faculty Senate suggests that indirect costs should be more directly applied to the costs of conducting research, rather than contributing to the general funding of the System and the University at the discretion of administrators not directly responsible for the research enterprise on this campus. Erosion of the proportion of indirect costs going to support research was considerable during the recent budget crises; the funds were used to offset deficits from State funding and tuition, as well as to support the early retirement program for faculty.
Motion – Establishment of a more direct and accountable line for research-generated funds to support research costs and sponsor new research initiatives is critical to the overall balance of the University mission. Thus, the Faculty Senate requests that expenditures of indirect costs be redistributed to focus on reinvestment in research and scholarly activity. We believe that if indirect costs on research grants were properly reallocated greater indirect cost returns, higher levels of extramural research funding, and expanded scholarly activity across the university would result. We resolve that system and campus administration should consider redistributing a substantial majority of indirect costs beginning 1 July 1999, and that a committee consisting of the Research and Public Service Committee of the Faculty Senate, 2 members of the graduate faculty who are external to the Faculty Senate, the Vice Provost for Research and Graduate Studies, the Chief Financial Officer, and a representative from the Chancellor’s Office be formed with the charge of formulating an optimal strategy for reinvesting and accounting for indirect costs resulting from external grants. The Committee should consider reallocation of these indirect costs to the following areas: 1) to the researchers who have obtained grants and the units in which they are associated so they would directly benefit from and obtain a significant portion of indirect costs; 2) to researchers in areas in which external grant funding is hard to obtain so that they may benefit from University seed money, start-up funds, travel funds, release time from teaching, etc. Through the Faculty Research Funds Committee; and 3) to other areas in which indirect costs would directly benefit researchers, such as a liability pool from which workers compensation claims can be paid, and other safety, insurance and liability issues addressed.
Mechanisms for these reallocations remain to be worked out, but other universities allocate a portion directly to the researcher, a portion to the Department or Research Unit, a portion to the College, and a portion remaining centrally controlled. The committee should report to the senate at its April 1999 meeting with its recommendations.
Discussion: J. Alexander welcomed the motion, saying Pres. Hoff and VP Dwyer will also. There will be some monies coming back next year and they are interested in seeing how this will take place. We need to decide. Indirect funding is growing fast. Would like to see as much as possible redirected next year. We are getting a large influx of Research and Development money, and every time we do, facilities costs go up. Belknap comment on item 3. Claims made now result in illegal charge to grant. Must be addressed. Vote: all in favor except 2 abstentions.
Motion. “Creation of a Committee on Gifts in the name of Graduating Classes.” Knud Hermansen:
Preamble – The University of Maine is a community of faculty, staff, and students brought together for a common goal – advanced education. The community creates an interaction that fosters appreciation, understanding, and pride. There is a team spirit where students, faculty, and staff work toward a common goal. There is tremendous appreciation and pride in faculty that students have chosen this institution, enrolled in their program, and attended classes taught by faculty in order to prepare the student for increase responsibility and employment.
In remembrance and appreciation of the achievement of the student body upon graduation, the faculty and senior class, through representations from the colleges, will establish one or more proposed improvements each year that will enhance the beauty or operation and utilization of the campus community by students. Faculty may make donations to these improvements in the name of the graduation class.
Therefore the motion is made to establish a permanent committee of the administration composed of a faculty member from each college and a member of the senior class from each college, that will:
meet one or more times yearly,
select one or more improvements that will enhance the beauty or operation and utilization of the campus community by the students, and
provide a mechanism for accepting contributions from faculty, staff, and others, in the name of the graduating class, for purchasing the improvements.
Provided, however, the committee is not obligated to select an improvement if, in the committee’s majority opinion, there is insufficient funds or the committee fails to act in a timely manner.
Hermansen noted that this is in appreciation to the students. The motion was seconded. Discussion: Horan was concerned about the potential to raise a meaningful amount of money. King: What if money was given for a specific class and decision was made not to purchase gift for that year? The motion passed unanimously except for one abstention.
Motion (Onsrud): Motion in Support of a More Expansive Education for All University of Maine Students. (Change in title from agenda – agenda read: “More Liberal Education”)
Whereas “It would be more helpful to students if, as a starting point, universities conceived education less as a training for a career than as the introduction to life” (Jane Tompkins, prominent educator);
Whereas virtually every other major university in the nation follows a tuition structure at odds with that followed by the University of Maine and does so for the very good reason that encouraging the broadest education in preparation for all the contingencies of life should be a priority over job training;
Whereas the tuition structure of the vast majority of university systems in the nation provides an incentive for hard working motivated students to pursue an intense, diverse, and full university experience,
Whereas the current University of Maine tuition structure encourages students to take only the barest minimum number of courses to fulfill the requirements for their major;
Whereas the current University of Maine tuition structure inhibits students in the sciences, engineering, business and education from taking additional courses in the arts, humanities and liberal studies beyond the absolute minimum required for their often career directed degrees;
Whereas a traditional “…liberal education is out of date, incomplete, and won’t accomplish (its goal) “to lead students to an enlightened sense of themselves, their heritage, their world and prepare them for responsible and active citizenship’ (UMaine catalog) without a reasonable understanding of technology and the things that influence its development and application” (John Alexander, prominent educator, 2/1/99 e-mail);
Whereas changing the tuition structure would allow students focused on liberal studies to risk taking a broader and more in-depth range of scientific, mathematical, and technology-focused courses and would allow technology-focused students to take a broader and more in-depth range of humanistic courses;
Whereas providing flexibility for all students to take additional courses outside of their chosen major would broaden their education and enhance their enjoyment of the University of Maine experience;
Whereas the Current University of Maine tuition structure encourages students to avoid risk in the selection of courses, that is, select only courses directly related to their major program or to choose only those courses outside of their program in which high or passing grades are ensured;
Whereas many courses at the University of Maine do not reach their full enrollment caps each semester and changing the fee structure in line with that of most other universities in the nation would not require that additional courses be taught;
Whereas other universities have little to no difficulty in ensuring that students required to take specific courses have priority in enrolling in high demand courses (such as by having other students obtain permission of the instructor in order to enroll);
Whereas greater flexibility in exploring the full range of courses offered on campus would result in a more empowered and satisfied student body leading to enrollment increases over time;
Whereas the flexibility to explore the full range of campus courses will introduce much more interaction and cooperation among students from different majors and colleges;
Whereas, “If the places that young people go to be educated don’t embody the ideals of community, cooperation, and harmony, what young people will learn will be the behavior these institutions do exemplify: competition, hierarchy, busyness, and isolation.” (Jane Tompkins, prominent educator);
Be it resolved that the Faculty Senate supports the fullest liberal education for all University of Maine students and, in furtherance of this goal, asks the University of Maine administration to pursue consistently and persistently with the Board of Trustees for as long as it takes, a tuition policy that comports with the intent of Bearworks item 4-11 and that generally comports with the fee structures of the vast majority of other universities in the nation.
Onsrud noted that vast majority of students at other universities have opportunities to take exploratory courses outside their majors. Grillo spoke for Cohn: would require students to pay for total number of credits required for their major. Then, beyond this number, they could take as many additional courses as desired, without charge and these courses would be so indicated on their transcripts. Discussion included reservation as to when to stop charging, how to indicate the extra courses, and other bookkeeping.
Question called on amendment. Passed.
Amendment: 2 abstentions, remainder opposed.
Return to original motion.
Justin Kelleher asked about fee structure. Onsrud: There is no “magic number.” Ferguson noted: we are voting on BearWorks task 4-11: “institute tuition and fee structures that promote […] enrollment.” Rosenwasser noted opposition to this BearWorks item, to hurrying students along. Alexander: we should not be interested in the specifics of revenue, but in the concept.
Point of order was raised:
Question called: 2 opposed to calling question; 1 abstained; remainder in favor.
A vote was cast on the “Motion in support of a more expansive…”
20 in favor; 13 opposed; 2 abstained. Motion passed.
K. Hermansen: Jury Duty Motion:
Resolved that the University of Maine grant excused absences to students who must miss class because of jury duty.” Hearing no objections, motion passed.
Meeting was adjourned at 5:00 PM.