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2007-2008 - May 7, 2008

Faculty Senate Minutes

MAY 7, 2008

Present: Andrei Alyokhin, Emmanuel Boss, Tony Brinkley, Fei Chai, Alan Cobo-Lewis, Steve Cohn, William Congleton, Dorothy Croall, Robert Dana, Michael Eckardt, Catherine Elliott, Sue Estler, Alaric Faulkner, Per Garder, James Gilbert, Michael Grillo, William Halteman, Dianne Hoff, Sue Hunter, Cary Jenson, Scott Johnson, Robert Kennedy, Michael Kinnison, Irv Kornfield, Kathleen March, Craig Mason, Abtin Mehdizadegan, Tina Passman, Gregory Porter, Robert Rice, Dan Sandweiss, Kathryn Slott, Touradj Solouki, Claire Strickland, Shihfen Tu, Beth Wiemann, David Wihry.

Absent: Daniel Belknap, Carla Billitteri, Richard Blanke, Douglas Bousfield, Thomas Brann, Rodney Bushway, Hsiang-Tai Cheng, Marcia Davidson, Raphael DiLuzio, Jacques Ferland, Saundra Gradner, Duane Hanselman, Deborah Killam, Dorothy Klimis-Zacas, Karl Kreutz, David Lambert, Larry Latour, James McClymer, Ngo Vinh Long, Anja Nohe, Harlan Onsrud, Howard Patterson, Allan Smith, Roy Turner, Stephanie Welcomer.

President James Gilbert opened the meeting. He announced that Governor Baldacci had been on campus and had visited the Food Sciences department.

The Minutes from the April 30 senate meeting were approved.

Committee Reports:

BOT Representative, Bob Rice

The BOT will meet May 10 & 11. Among items to be discussed are the tuition increase for next year, probably 9.8%. There will be significant changes in government programs funded this year specifically financial aid. There will be an update on the budget, four campuses will be presenting their budgets. Bob Kennedy stated that UMaine is the shining star of the University of Maine System and our budget, thanks to Janet Waldron and Claire Strickland, is the envy of the other campuses.

Constitution & Bylaws, Dianne Hoff

No report, work is continuing on the documents.

Research & Scholarship, Touradj Solouki

200 Faculty responded to the Research & Scholarship survey that was sent to all faculty. He thought this was a good number of responses. The committee will be presenting a report on the outcomes of the survey sometime next year.

Finance & Institutional Planning, Sue Estler

The 9.8% increase that is being considered for the Fall semester is the lowest increase in the system. UMaine is only 1 of 2 campuses in the system that ended the fiscal year in the black. She thanked her committee members, and also thanked Janet Waldron and Claire Strickland for their work with the committee.

Library Advisory Committee, Dr. Emmanuel Boss

They are still working on developing a Institutional Repository, a sub-committee is looking at cost estimates. Dr. Harlan Onsrud will chair the Library Committee next year. He thanked the members of his committee.

Service & Outreach Committee, Dr. Kathleen March

Dr. March gave a written report (text below).

The Service & Outreach Committee was extremely busy during AY 2007-2008. At the September meeting faculty senate passed a motion to make it a standing committee and thus the chair now forms part of the Executive Committee. Research & Public Service became Research & Scholarship.

Discussions at the start of the Fall semester shaped the agenda to include a discussion with the Provost focused on the substantial report submitted in April 2007. Late in the semester then-Provost Szymanski committed $5,000 to service-learning initiatives, along with support for 3 – 4 retreats, plus travel expenses for a team of three people to attend the Outreach Scholarship Conference at Penn State in early October.

With this support, the Committee organized and held 3 sessions to develop the application for the Carnegie elective classification of Community Engagement. This application is in process and is to be submitted by September 1.

The Service & Outreach Committee also developed an RFP for mini-grants to implement service-learning courses or projects in the UMaine curriculum. After several meetings to draft the RFP, this was disseminated and four projects have been awarded funding: 2 in literacy and 2 in environment and health. We are very pleased with the outcome of the process and see this as a strong commitment on the part of the administration to community engagement and instruction.

There will be a workshop on June 2 and 3 on PBSL (Problem-based Service-learning), organized by the Service & Outreach Committee in conjunction with Maine Campus Compact. It is free to UMaine community members and open to others statewide.

A subgroup of the Service & Outreach Committee is working on curriculum development, in the form of an entry-level SL course and an advanced course. There is also work ongoing for the creation of a graduate certificate in service-learning or community engagement. These courses will be created and submitted to the proper evaluating entities in the near future (the end of May is the projected completion date).

Committee on Committees, William Halteman

Dr. Halteman thanked the members of his committee.

PCRRC, David Wihry

Dr. Wihry referenced the two motions on the agenda which will be voted on today.

Ad Hoc Committee on Shared Governance, Bob Rice & Dianne Hoff

Dianne Hoff thanked Sue Hunter and Dan Sandweiss for working on the committee. There is a draft in place looking at present existing policies. They are hoping to tweak the document in the upcoming months and hope to have a finalized version sometime next year.

University Environment, Stephanie Welcomer

Dr. Welcomer could not attend.

New Business:

Motion to Support the University of Maine’s Mission Statement

Mission Statement

The University of Maine advances learning and discovery through excellence and innovation in undergraduate and graduate academic programs while addressing the complex challenges and opportunities of the 21st Century through research-based knowledge.

Opportunity for all members of the University of Maine community is a cornerstone of our mission. The University welcomes students, research partners, and collaborators into an atmosphere that honors the heritage and diversity of our state and nation.

Founded in 1865, the University of Maine is a Land and Sea Grant institution and the flagship campus of the University of Maine System. This vibrant and dynamic university serves the residents of Maine, the nation, and the world through our acclaimed programs in teaching, research, and outreach.

Inspiring and dedicated teaching propels students into new fields of learning and promotes interdisciplinary understanding. Our educational goal is to help students develop their creative abilities, communication and critical thinking skills, and understanding of traditions in ethics and rationality within the arts, sciences, and professions.

Internationally-recognized research, scholarship, and creative activity distinguish the University of Maine as the state’s flagship university, where faculty and students contribute knowledge to issues of local, national, and international significance. As the state’s doctoral-granting institution, research and education are inextricably linked.

Comprehensive outreach, including public service, cooperative extension, continuing education, and distance learning, engages learners of all ages in improving their lives and communities. Using research-based knowledge, outreach efforts promote sustainable use of Maine’s abundant natural resources, and build intellectual, cultural, and economic capacity throughout Maine and beyond.

Through integrated teaching, research and outreach, the University of Maine improves the quality of life for people in Maine and around the world, and promotes responsible stewardship of human, natural, and financial resources.

Preamble

In 2007, a committee of the Administration was formed to review and update the University’s Mission Statement. The committee consisted of six faculty members, one from each College and one from Cooperative Extension, including Pat Burns (Liberal Arts and Sciences), Catherine Elliott (Cooperative Extension), Dianne Hoff (Education and Human Development), Scott Johnson (Natural Sciences, Forestry and Agriculture), Michael Peterson, chairperson (Engineering), and Robert Strong (Business, Public Policy, and Health). Four of the six faculty members also served on the Faculty Senate, including the chairperson. Dan Sandweiss (Dean and Associate Provost for Graduate Studies) also served on the committee, and Len Kass coordinated our efforts within the broader context of the NEASC self-study.

The committee worked collaboratively to analyze the existing Mission Statement, explore models used by other campuses, and brainstorm key points for a revised version. Over 50 drafts of a new mission statement were written and circulated among the committee in an iterative process over four months.

In December 2007 a preliminary draft was distributed at the Faculty Senate and Provost for comment. Although it is impossible to incorporate every person’s specific suggestions, the committee considered all input and made further revisions, which are incorporated in the version below. If the Senate endorses this Mission Statement, it will next go to the President for approval and will be incorporated into the NEASC Self-Study, under Standard One, “Mission and Purpose.” (All 11 NEASC standards will be available for review by the faculty and community at large later this spring.) Once all campus approvals have been obtained, the Mission Statement will be sent to the Board of Trustees for final approval. It will then become the official Mission Statement of the University of Maine.

Motion:

The Faculty Senate of the University of Maine endorses the 2008 revision of the University Mission Statement, and encourages the committee to move the document to the President and the Board of Trustees for approval.

The motion passed.

The following letter was included in the handouts for this senate meeting as in it directly relates to the following two motions regarding the program creation of the School of Policy and International Affairs (SPIA).

April 29, 2008

Dr. James R. Gilbert

President, University of Maine Faculty Senate

220 Nutting Hall

Dear Jim:

The Faculty Senate’s Program Creation and Reorganization Review Committee (PCRRC) has completed its Phase 3 (final) review of the proposal reorganization of the School of Policy and International Affairs (SPIA) transmitted to the committee on April 8, 2008. The purpose of this letter is to convey the committee’s recommendations to the Faculty Senate. The Senate is scheduled to vote on whether to accept the recommendations at its meeting on May 7, 2008 The proposal sought to authorize SPIA to offer graduate degrees and the reorganization of SPIA to report to the Dean of the Graduate School and Associate Provost—shifting its reporting line from the Dean of the College of Business, Public Policy and Health.

Background

SPIA is a relatively new unit formally approved by the Chancellor’s Office in Fall 2006 after campus discussion in the 2005-2006 academic year. A draft proposal for SPIA was discussed by the Faculty Senate at the request of the Committee Chair, Daniel Innis, then Dean of the College of Business, Public Policy and Health. The Faculty Senate Environment Committee reviewed the draft proposal and expressed concerns in a report accepted by the Senate. SPIA was implemented by the administration without further Faculty Senate review (before the formal development of the PCRRC Process). The current review represents a commitment by the administration to “begin again” the review process with full Senate involvement. Our review found a unit very different in focus and maturity from that initially proposed to the Senate and initially approved by the Vice Chancellor. This letter documents the process of our review and the recommendation of the PCRRC to the Senate regarding SPIA’s authorization to offer graduate degrees and to change its reporting structure.

From its formal inception with the approval of Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs James Breece (Memorandum of Dr. Breece to UMaine President Robert Kennedy, November 13, 2006), SPIA was characterized as a “virtual” unit. It became clear last fall, as discussions of an intent-to-plan for a graduate degree program in global policy to be housed in SPIA began among advocates of such a program, that there was lack of clarity regarding whether a virtual unit is authorized to offer degree programs. The PCRRC queried President Kennedy and Provost Szymanski about this and other questions relating to SPIA’s authority in a letter of November 7, 2007. The validity of these questions was acknowledged by Provost Szymanski in her letter of November 16 to PCRRC chair David Wihry. At some point, the Provost designated Graduate School Dean Dan Sandweiss as the key administrator in any effort to resolve outstanding issues related to SPIA’s scope of authority. Informal discussions between the PCRRC, Dean Sandweiss, and the eventual proposers of the reorganization that is the subject of this letter led to an agreement that the PCRRC’s formal processes for reviewing and making recommendations

regarding contemplated reorganizations would be followed and that any reorganization proposal emerging from the process would eventually be submitted to the University of Maine System Board of Trustees for approval. Implicit in this agreement was the understanding among all parties that granting SPIA the authority to offer graduate degrees would constitute a reorganization subject to PCRRC review by virtue of a mission change. In addition, it was clear to all parties that the PCRRC review would in no way replace the evolving intent-to-plan for a graduate degree program in global policy. As a curricular proposal, such a program would have to go through the normal approval process for new degrees, which does not constitute a reorganization and does not involve the PCRRC. It was the committee’s understanding that the degree proposal would go forward on the intent-to-plan track (i.e., via the Graduate Board) but that a proposal for a new degree would not be submitted to the Board unless the PCRRC-based reorganization review ultimately led to providing SPIA with degree-granting authority.

PCRRC Review Process

The review process was formally initiated with the submission of a Phase 2 pre-proposal to the committee by SPIA Director John Mahon and SPIA Director of Research and Programs Bahman Baktiari on February 13, 2008. The pre-proposal focused on two reorganizations: the request that SPIA be authorized to offer graduate degree programs and the request that SPIA be moved from the College of Business, Public Policy, and Health to the Graduate School. The pre-proposal had the approval of Provost Szymanski. The Committee, in accordance with the policies approved by the Senate and accepted by President Kennedy (and re-affirmed earlier this semester), initiated an information-gathering process that included a two-week period for public comment on the pre-proposal. As part of its review, the committee also examined such materials as the terms of the gift SPIA had received from an anonymous donor, and SPIA’s budget for FY 2007-08. The Committee met once with the proposers to discuss a set of questions members had raised. In all, fourteen comments were received via email and posted on the Committee’s publicly accessible First Class site. ( Please see the First Class folder Faculty Resources, Faculty Senate, Reorganization, SPIA, SPIA Phase II for a copy of the pre-proposal and for the emailed comments the committee received.) Ultimately, the Committee determined that the proposed reorganizations, if implemented, would likely have a significant academic impact. This finding triggered the beginning of Phase 3 of the review process. In its Phase 2 findings, the committee identified a list of issues it asked the proposers to address in their Phase 3 proposal.

The Phase 3 proposal was received on April 8. Shortly thereafter, the proposal was circulated and a second two-week comment period was initiated. In addition to receiving comments by email (five comments were received and are posted in the SPIA Phase III folder along with the proposal and supporting materials), the committee held two public meetings (April 18 and April 21) to gather oral testimony. A total of fourteen persons, including seven students, presented oral testimony. The oral presentations were tape-recorded and the tapes were made available to committee members who were not able to attend one or both of the public meetings.

Committee Action

At its meeting of April 25, the Committee discussed the proposal and voted as follows:

Motion: That the PCRRC recommend to the Faculty Senate the approval of a reorganization of SPIA so that it is authorized to offer graduate degree programs: Yes: 8; No: 0; Abstain: 1; Recused: 1.

Motion: That the PCRRC recommend to the Faculty Senate the approval of a reorganization of SPIA so that it will report to the Graduate School instead of to the College of Business, Public Policy and Health: Yes: 9; No: 0; Recused: 1.

The committee’s position in regard to the proposed reorganizations was based on the record developed during the review process. That information led the Committee to conclude, among other things:

a. that SPIA has and will probably continue to have sufficient financial resources (its base budget and income from endowments and grants) so that it will be able to sustain a graduate degree program of reasonable quality along with its other activities, without constituting a financial drain on other units within the University of Maine.

b. that SPIA’s Program Advisory Committee will formally adopt fair and transparent practices (essentially as outlined in draft form in the Phase 3 proposal) for recruiting and appointing cooperating faculty members.

c. that SPIA will act to encourage the participation of women and minorities in its Board of Advisers, Cooperating Scholars, and staff of Cooperating Faculty.

d. that some confusion still exists in regard to the name of the organization. “School of Policy and International Affairs” can be perceived to encompass both undergraduate and graduate studies relative to the full range of both policy issues in general and a full range of international issues. In fact, clearer focus has evolved centered on graduate programs. The committee believes that greater consistency can be achieved between the name of the organization and its mission and organizational location. Thus, although the unit might continue to be referred to informally as SPIA, the formal names of “Graduate School of Policy and International Affairs,” “Graduate School of Global Policy and International Affairs,” or “Graduate School of Global Policy” would more accurately reflect the mission of the unit. This would eliminate ambiguity relative to existing units on campus and would more accurately and succinctly convey the organization’s mission. The committee recognizes the “branding” already associated with the name SPIA but suggests, like many other organizations ranging from SRI International (once the Stanford Research Institute) to CDC (the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), that the brand can continue with explanatory subtitles even when the initial acronym no longer fits.

Going Forward

The committee wishes to emphasize one overriding concern based on the pattern of issues raised by those who urged caution in approving the proposed reorganizations. Most of the expressed concerns arise from the fact that SPIA is a multi-disciplinary entity that spans several colleges and departments and will rely for its staffing to a substantial degree on resources that reside in those colleges and departments. The cross-disciplinary reach is both a strength and a weakness. It is the committee’s position that the benefits of such an organizational structure can be realized only if there is robust and constructive communication between cross-disciplinary units such as SPIA and the traditional organizational units such as colleges and departments. Indeed, absent adequate communication and coordination the goodwill needed to make cross-disciplinary ventures succeed will erode and such units will ultimately fail. By example, interdisciplinary program graduate students have been excluded from graduate courses in some programs based on resource limitation arguments and this proposal implies the need for assurances that interdisciplinary graduate students will have adequate access to courses required

by their programs. Maintaining a cooperative and mutually beneficial relationship between SPIA and the colleges and departments will require an extra-ordinary effort on the part of the Dean of the Graduate School to ensure that friction between SPIA and the traditional units is minimized and that positive and productive relationships develop. Doing so may require new governance structures and procedures and methods of acknowledging and rewarding the participation of colleges and departments in SPIA’s activities. We urge all affected parties to work together to put aside any concerns that have arisen in the past and make a good-faith effort to work constructively together in the future.

Finally, the committee wishes to thank all those who have taken the time to submit written comments or oral testimony. That input proved to be invaluable to the committee’s deliberations. We also wish to thank the proposers for their willingness to respond to several rounds of questions as the review process unfolded.

Sincerely,

David F. Wihry, Chair

Program Creation and Reorganization Review Committee

CC:

Dr. John F. Mahon, Dean, College of Business, Public Policy and Health

& Founding Director, School of Policy and International Affairs

Dr. Bahman Baktiari, Director, Research and Academic Programs, School of

Policy and International Affairs

Dr. Daniel Sandweiss, Dean, Graduate School, and Associate Provost for Graduate Studies

Committee Members:

  • Dr. Rodney Bushway
  • Dr. Alan Cobo-Lewis
  • Dr. Sue Estler
  • Dr. Dianne Hoff
  • Dr. Karen Horton
  • Dr. Scott Johnson
  • Dr. Kathleen March
  • Dr. Harlan Onsrud
  • Dr. Stephanie Welcomer

Motion: The Faculty Senate recommends the approval of the reorganization of the School of Policy and International Affairs so that it is authorized to house offer graduate degree programs.

A friendly amendment was passed to change the word “house” to “offer”.

The motion passed: 24 for, 1 against, 1 abstained.

Motion: The Faculty Senate recommends the approval of the reorganization of the School of Policy and International Affairs so that it will report to the Graduate School instead of to the College of Business, Public Policy and Health.

The motion passed: 23 for, 2 against, 1 abstained.

Election of 2008-2009 Officers of the Faculty Senate:

Dr. Judy Kuhns-Hastings, Vice President/President Elect

Dr. Robert Rice, Board of Trustees Representative

Dr. Tina Passman, Secretary

Dr. Gilbert was given parting gifts and thanked for his service to the senate. Dr. Hoff was given a symbolic gift of a gavel and block for the 2008-2009 senate year.

A reception was held immediately following the meeting.

 


Back to 2007-2008

Faculty Senate
Kimberly Junkins, Faculty Senate Office
205 East Annex, Orono, Maine 04469
Phone: (207) 581-1167 | Fax: (207) 581-2640
E-mail: kimberly.junkins@umit.maine.edu
The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469
207.581.1865