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2003-2004 - January 28, 2004

Faculty Senate Minutes

January 28, 2004

Present: Jim Acheson, Peggy Agouris, Dean Astumian, Darlene Bay, Robert Bayer, Douglas Bousfield, Mary Brakey, Thomas Brann, Robert Cashon, Scott Delcourt, Rick Eason, Mahmoud El-Begearmi, Todd Gabe, Sandy Gardner, Gail Garthwait, Doug Gelinas, Stephen Gilson, Alexander Grab, Michael Greenwood, Michael Grillo, Paul Grosswiler, Vince Guiseppe, Robert Gunderson, Nancy Hall, Ludlow Hallman, Marie Hayes, Cortlynn Hepler, Peter Hoff, James Horan, Mike Howard, Dana Humphrey, Dan Innis, Carlos Islam, Mel Johnson, Robert Kennedy, Dennis King, Irv Kornfield, Luanne Lawrence, John Maddaus, Deirdre Mageean, Chuck Maguire, Kathleen March, James McClymer, Jeff Mills, Charles Moody, Howard Patterson, Bryan Pearce, Linda Rottman, Thomas Sandford, Dan Sandweiss, Christa Schwintzer, Evelyn Silver, Janet Spector, Cassie Stevens-Walker, Stellos Tavantzis, Roy Turner, Janet Waldron, Bob Whelan, Gregory White, Dave Yarborough.

Absent: Eisso Atzema, Martha Broderick, Thomas Christensen, Laura Cowan, Alla Gamarnik, Scott Johnson, Joseph Kelley, David Lambert, Martha McNamara, Bruce Segee, Andrew Thomas, Ken Tudor, Michael Vayda.

I. Welcome and Signing in

The meeting was called to order at 3:21 P. M.

Professor Skorpen Memorial

Senator Michael Howard read a memorial in honor of the recently deceased Philosophy Professor Erling Skorpen. The memorial was written by Professor Jeff White.

“As many of you know, Erling Skorpen, died Thursday, January 8. He was a great friend and esteemed colleague of many on this faculty. He came here in 1968 after remarkable careers at Oxford, where he was a Rhodes Scholar, at Yale, and at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He was born with an excess of talent and charm to which he gave bountiful public expression in scholarship, teaching and civic life. A special scholarly interest was in what he called in one of his papers, ‘symbols of condensation’. These are linguistic and behavioral expressions which contain multiple levels of meaning and significance. Erling’s award as Distinguished University of Maine Professor for 1975 is a symbol of this sort. Other symbols of his achievements abound, however, and in closing I want to mention, briefly, one of these.

A few days after announcement of Erling’s death, I received an unexpected e-mail from Houston, Texas, written by a former student of Erling’s. So far as I know no member of our Department – including Erling – had been in contact with this student since his graduation. How he learned of Erling’s death I don’t know, but here, in part, is how the message read:

“I had several classes in philosophy before graduating in 1993. Ethics, with Erling Skorpen, was one of the best. I found him engaging, utterly charming and enthusiastic      beyond measure. I will remember him fondly…Life has turned out quite well for me, and I attribute a great deal of any small success I have had to my experience at Maine. Erling Skorpen was a part of that, and I guess I simply wanted to share this with someone.”

It is impossible to make teaching like Erling’s register in ‘Outcome Assessments‘ and the like. It is impossible, in part, because often the deepest effects of classroom work pass virtually without notice — until, sometimes through loss, they are momentarily recovered and find expression. There have been, and will continue to be, such recoveries and expressions in Professor Skorpen’s case. He occupies a unique and lasting presence in the collective, long-term memory of the Faculty of the University of Maine.”

II. Approval of minutes

The minutes from the 12/17/03 meeting were approved unanimously.

III. Announcements of the President

Denate President Bryan Pearce announced that Luanne Lawrence, Executive Director of Public Affairs and Marketing, and Senator Darlene Bay, College of Business Public Policy and Health, were invited to address the Faculty Senate today.

IV.   Committee Reports

A. Jim Acheson (Committee on Committees)

A vacancy on the Student Contact Code Committee was announced.

B. Peggy Agouris (Research and Public Service).

A subcommittee has been working on finding ways to increase the efficiency of the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP).

Another subcommittee has been focusing on streamlining grant proposal submission.

Finally, the committee has been looking into ways of generating resources for funding librarian positions.

C.  Darlene Bay (Finance and Institutional Planning).

Darlene Bay reiterated that according to the relevant motion that was passed last year, the Faculty Senate is supposed to have input into the budget process before the budget becomes finalized and, therefore, this should occur soon.

D.  Michael Grillo (University Environment)

The committee will offer a motion on “Establishing a Clear Process for Determining Faculty Positions” under New Business.

E.  Marie Hayes (Academic Affairs)

Two different subcommittees are crafting motions on gen ed learning outcome assessment methods, and teaching evaluation methods, respectively.

F. Dana Humphrey (Board of Trustees Representative)

The Board of Trustees met in Augusta this past weekend. They approved the student recreation center at the University of Maine, and a Holocaust Human Rights Education Center at the University of Maine in Augusta.

The UMS is working on a strategic plan on an accelerated timetable. The written reports on the visits of the System’s representatives to the different campuses are not available to date, so the time window for responding will be very narrow.  Dana emphasized that the Strategic Planning Committee’s timeline is very aggressive. The Board of Trustees will discuss the first draft of the strategic plan on 2/24/04. The plan will be available for feedback in March.

G. Howard Patterson (Constitution and By-laws)

The committee has been working with the administration on coming up with a Faculty Handbook that would be acceptable to both the faculty and the administration.

H. Jim Warhola (Interdisciplinary Programs)

No report.

I. Tom Sandford (Workload Analysis)

The committee has invited faculty who had a major change in their work load to submit a 1-2 page report in which they provide specific information regarding their complaint. The committee will work toward establishing equity, and might involve AFUM in the process.

Highlights of Presentation by Luanne Lawrence

  • In a survey of 500 prospective students, students projected they would major in areas including liberal arts, the sciences, education and business. For the first time in approximately 20 years, liberal arts has emerged in this and other national surveys as a top choice for a college major. Business and education were also elevated as student choices.
  • A prospective student made the following statement, which exemplifies a new brand of students attending UMaine:  “I want to go to a school where learners get the same attention as winners”.
  • One television commercial appearing in two different flights will provide information on UMaine programs.  A radio campaign will complement the TV commercials. The commercials will focus mostly in the Portland area with some exposure in the Bangor market.
  • Another method used by M&M is the “pitch sheet” for the media. Based on the hottest news topic the previous evening, UMaine professors-experts on the subject are being pitched and, in turn, the stories are picked up by the likes of Associated Press, Portland Press Herald, and Boston Globe.
  • Marketing plans and marketing strategies are being developed, and will be finalized when institutional goals are in place.
  • The Department is working on integrating communications such as fund raising, economic development, state relations, or research, so that the University delivers consistent messages.
  • Faculty are invited to write Op Ed articles for the local and regional press, and inform the M&M Department about their research and teaching accomplishments.

Highlights of Darlene Bay’s presentation

Title: Status of the Economy of Maine.  Excerpts from a presentation authored by Business Professor John Mahon.

  • Over 98% of Maine businesses employ 1-99 people, but 40.1% of employees work at larger firms.
  • Tax burden is very high for businesses in Maine. It is the highest in the country for state and local taxes and 4th from top in terms of total tax burden.
  • The portion of total tax revenue that comes from individuals is increasing.
  • Amount of State support for higher education has gone down whereas that for welfare has gone up.
  • Personal income and its rate of increase are very low in Maine. Average disposable income per capita is only $20,426 We are lagging behind other New England states in terms of increase in domestic product and many other measures.
  • Manufacturing jobs have been reduced by 46.8% in the last 10 years in Maine. The shift is toward more service sector jobs which pay less.

In the ensuing discussion in regards to the role of the University of Maine in the economic development of the state, Darlene responded that businesses are looking for college graduates who are problem solvers and have a solid liberal arts education. She also pointed out that the University should be responsive to the needs of the state from addressing current crises to planning for the future.

Kathleen March suggested that we offer our students a global education (multicultural and multilingual) as opposed to a local education, so that they can be productive citizens of Maine.

V. Dialogue with the administration

Faculty Senate President Bryan Pearce asked Provost Kennedy about the budget (cuts) situation. Kennedy said that a number of UMaine administrators met with the Governor, State Government members, State legislators and the UMaine Board of Visitors in Augusta on 1/27/04. All of them were very positive about UMS and specifically about UMaine. Proposals on the Center for Tourism and Fogler Library expansion were submitted and received very favorably. Janet Waldron indicated that the budget cut figures for UMS varied but seemed to be around $5.7 million for FY 04 and $1.05 for FY 05.

Janet Waldron mentioned that the administration has been preparing a bond for the expansion and renovation of Fogler Library to be submitted during the current legislative session, whereas UMS is planning to submit a bond for deferred maintenance for the system during next year’s session. 

In response to Marie Hayes’ question on faculty travel, the Provost explained that the administration is trying to minimize the effects of the current budget crisis on faculty travel, and is encouraging the deans to do the same.

Marie Hayes also asked about journal subscriptions, and Vice President Doug Gelinas responded that ScienceDirectTM has been funded through a state bond issued to UMS, which has expired, and UMaine does not have the funds to continue subscription of the package of journals that ScienceDirect includes.

Responding to Michael Grillo’s question, Provost Kennedy stated that a substantial portion of the upcoming cuts will be covered by money that has been saved through unfilled positions or services not delivered. He pledged that the administration will try to minimize the impact of the cuts on academics. President Hoff added that both the Provost and Janet Waldron will keep the Faculty Senate informed on any significant budget developments.

VI. Other Business

Michael Grillo presented the following motion on behalf of the University Environment Committee:

Establishing a Clear Process for Determining Faculty Positions

The Environment Committee, The Faculty Senate, January, 2004


Over the past year, the process for determining new faculty positions and the replacement of faculty members in existing positions vacated by retirements, departures, and terminations, has changed substantially.  Currently, all determinations now reside in the Office of the Provost, who apportions funding according to the general guidelines set forth by the Strategic Plan and the Incentivized Budget Plan.  The Faculty Senate appreciates the Provost’s willingness to return decisions on positions to each College, and hopes that the current financial constraints, in further necessitating a clear, open policy, will help expedite this return.


The Faculty Senate asks that the Office of the Provost write a clear policy for determining decisions about the creation of new faculty positions and retention of vacated positions that departments and colleges deem as needing replacement.  We ask that the Office of Provost work in conjunction with a faculty representative from each of the five Colleges and Cooperative Extension (each representative directly elected by that unit’s faculty) in their draughting of these policies, that they have these guidelines in place by 28 February, 2004, and that they publish them permanently through ready access in the University’s web-pages.

Provost Kennedy indicated that concerning academic affairs in his office, the fiscal aspect of faculty replacement is the primary consideration. The programmatic aspects of faculty hiring are linked to priorities set at the college level.

The motion carried unanimously.

Michael Howard presented the following motion on behalf of the Academic Affairs Committee:


Whereas President Hoff has presented the following principles as guidelines for involvement in the College of Business, Public Policy, and Health’s conference on Doing Business in Iraq, co-sponsored with the US-Iraq Business Alliance:

“The conference must remain true to its core purpose – examination of the appropriate role in Iraq for U.S. businesses, and instruction in effective and ethical ways to do business in Iraq.  It should not become a vehicle for advocating a political perspective regarding our country’s military or geopolitical role in Iraq.

The conference should address and help delineate the difference between sound business practices that strengthen the country of Iraq vs. practices that one might consider “war profiteering.”

UMaine professors must participate in the conference, not only as members of the audience but also as featured speakers.  Their role should include addressing not only sound and profitable business practices, but the ethical and cultural considerations that attend doing business in other countries.

The issue of Iraqi national stability vis-a-vis business involvement in the country needs to be seriously addressed by the conference.  What are the pros and cons of attempting to do business in a country where bullets are still flying?  How much stabilization is necessary before it is advisable to enter a war-torn country and engage in business enterprises?

Lastly, UMaine should not be a member of an organization that will not publicly divulge the names of its members.  If the University or any of its units have advertently or inadvertently joined such an organization, it should immediately withdraw its membership.”


Be it resolved that:

The Faculty Senate endorses President Hoff’s five principles for a conference on Doing Business in Iraq, adds that the conference should include a diversity of perspectives on the ethics of doing business in Iraq, and advises that the College of BPPH withdraw from the conference and withdraw from the US-Iraq Business Alliance if it is not possible to revise the agenda and Alliance policy in conformity with these principles.

President Hoff suggested that the motion be worded in a way so that if does not single-out the College of BPPH but it applies to all similar cases in the future. Faculty Senate President Bryan Pearce explained that the elected members debated this aspect in their last meeting, and it was decided that the motion should remain in its present form.

Marie Hayes praised President Hoff for providing guidance to the faculty on a difficult issue.

Provost Kennedy said that it is bothersome that the Faculty Senate advises one unit, thus infringing upon its academic freedom.

The motion carried with 24 in favor, 9 opposed and 4 abstentions.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:57 P.M.

Respectfully submitted,

Stellos Tavantzis, Secretary


Back to 2003-2004

Faculty Senate
Kimberly Junkins, Faculty Senate Office
205 East Annex, Orono, Maine 04469
Phone: (207) 581-1167 | Fax: (207) 581-2640
The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469