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2007-2008 - September 19, 2007

Faculty Senate Minutes

September 19, 2007

Present: Andrei Alyokhin, Daniel Belknap, Carla Billitteri, Richard Blanke, Rod Bushway, Fei Chai, Hsiang-Tai Cheng, Steve Cohn, William Congleton, Robert Dana, Marcia Davidson, Patrick Devanney, Sue Estler, Jacques Ferland, Per Garder, Gail Garthwait, Jim Gilbert, William Halteman, Brandon Hartt, Mike Hastings, Dianne Hoff, Karen Horton, Sue Hunter, Mel Johnson, Scott Johnson, Al Kezis, Michael Kinnison, Dorothy Klimis-Zacas, Karl Kreutz, Larry Latour, Jim McClymer, Harlan Onsrud, Tina Passman, Howard Patterson, Mick Peterson, Bob Rice, Joyce Rumery, Dan Sandweiss, Evelyn Silver, Kathryn Slott, Touradj Solouki, Claire Strickland, Edna Mora Szymanski, Geoffrey Thorpe, Shihfen Tu, Roy Turner, Janet Waldron, Stephanie Welcomer, Beth Wiemann, David Wihry, Jared Worful.

Absent: Emmanuel Boss, Douglas Bousfield, Thomas Brann, Tony Brinkley, Alan Cobo-Lewis, Scott Collins, Dorothy Croall, Raphael DiLuzio, Alaric Faulkner, Sandy Gardner, Duane Hanselman, Cary Jenson, Irving Kornfield, David Lambert, Roger Merchant, Ngo Vinh Long, Gregory Porter, Allan Smith, Vivian Wu.

President James Gilbert called the meeting to order at 3:15 pm.

Dr. Gilbert introduced the liaisons to the faculty senate, Mel Johnson, P.E.A.C., Christine Hockensmith, C.E.A.C., Molly MacLean, DLL, Jared Worful, GSG, Brandon Hartt, Student Government and administrators, President Robert Kennedy, who could not attend, Provost Edna Szymanski, and the Deans’ Representative, Edward Ashworth, who also was not able to attend.

The minutes from the May 2, 2007, senate meeting were approved, with the change in the year to reflect the correct date (2007).

Committee Reports

Board of Trustees Representative – Dr. Bob Rice

Dr. Rice reported that the BOT met in Fort Kent on September 9 and 10. A joint program between UM and USM in athletic training was put forward. Several appointments were approved, including Dana Humphrey, Dean of the College of Engineering, Anne Pooler, Interim Dean, College of Education and Human Development. They also approved the construction of a wind turbine at UMPI. The collective bargaining agreements were approved.

Academic Affairs – Dr. Beth Wiemann

Dr. Wiemann reported that the committee will meet for the first time on Monday, Sept 24. The committee will be working with the Center for Teaching Excellence on general education outcomes assessment.

Constitution & Bylaws – Dr. Dianne Hoff

The committee has not yet met. There will be a motion next month regarding the creation of a new committee of the senate. They will be studying the shared governance document, and how that coincides with the constitution & bylaws of the senate.

University Environment – Dr. Stephanie Welcomer

The committee is working on the gym access issue and will meet with Dr. Dana in the near future.

Research & Public Service – Dr. Touradj Solouki

The committee needs one more member from BPPH, in order to encourage diversity, Dr. Solouki said the committee would welcome a female faculty member. The committee has met and discussed promotion of research and proposal submission.

Finance & Institutional Planning – Dr. Sue Estler

The committee will be working on financial reporting. The committee is looking for members from NSFA and Engineering.

Library Advisory Committee – Dr. Emmanuel Boss

Dr. Boss was unable to attend the meeting.

Service & Outreach Committee – Dr. Kathleen March

The committee needs one more member, Dr. March will check to see which college is not represented. The committee will be meeting after the senate meeting. The committee will be meeting with the Bodwell Center and will also continue to look at Promotion and Tenure criteria for units to see if outreach issues are included.

Committee on Committees – Dr. William Halteman

The committee needs members from Engineering, BPPH, Cooperative Extension and the Graduate Student Association.

Six to eight people are needed to serve on the Scientific Misconduct Committee, people are needed to serve on the search committee for the Dean of Liberal Arts & Sciences, two

more people are needed for the Director of the Hutchinson Center search committee and two more for the Promotion & Tenure Advisory Committee.

Program Creation, Review & Reorganization – Dr. David Wihry

At the end of the Spring semester a proposal to move the School of Nursing from BPPH to NSFA was worked on. During the two week informal review phase comments were solicited regarding the proposal and three people responded. The committee did not enter into the formal review stage as none of the comments was negative.

The committee is now reviewing a proposal from the Department of Public Administration to move from BPPH to the School of Public and International Affairs. Comments regarding the move will be solicited from the faculty at a future date.


Dr. Szymanski said that President Kennedy was unable to attend the meeting because he is in the southern part of the state raising money and also visiting Tidewater Farm, a complex in Falmouth that Cooperative Extension is looking at for a new office. It will give them a more visible presence in the southern part of the state. Janet Waldron explained the plans for fundraising in which President Kennedy is engaged.

Questions for Administrators

Dr. Gilbert opened the question session with a question regarding Promotion and Tenure. He stated that there has been considerable discussion among elected members and across campus regarding the P&T reappointment process. Concerns have been expressed over: (1) non-reappointment before the fifth year; (2) reversal of peer committee recommendations; and (3) the lack of information and consistency of recommendations, although the procedures for P&T and reappointment are incorporated into the contract, the senators feel that these are academic issues. President Gilbert asked the Provost to please explain the changes that have resulted in non-reappointment before the sixth year, reversal of peer committee recommendations and, if available, provide the number of promotions and reappointment decisions that were reversed by chairs, the promotion and tenure advisory committee and then the Provost/President. The Provost replied that technically nothing has changed except for the effort to involve the P&T Advisory Group more. This group viewed all the dossiers, not just problematic ones. Geoffrey Thorpe, one of the senior faculty members, spoke. He noted the alignment of commentary with departmental criteria and the difficulties that arose when a candidate’s record does not map as well with them, including when there is a joint appointment, or personal issues arise. Thorpe also noted that it would be good for advisory group members (faculty members) to gain more knowledge of the legalities of the P&T process. Kathleen March, also a member of the advisory group, agreed with the complications of cross-unit appointments and added that there are times when the discipline of candidates is not familiar to the advisory members. The Provost also mentioned that in discussions with

peer committees, the procedure was to have one faculty member and one administrator lead the questioning.

Discussion from the floor included a variety of questions and comments. One question was regarding the value given to peer evaluations, and the Provost noted that they are trying to help the peers do the best job in supporting candidates. Mention was made of the impression that the third year review’s importance has increased. The Provost did not say whether any of her recommendations were overturned by the President. The history of the creation of the advisory group was noted again. Provost Szymanski stated her interest in working with senate and AFUM on the suggestions for peer committees for P&T. President Gilbert noted that the executive committee will be meeting with the Provost on this issue and specifically to discuss the suggestions document that has been circulating.

Dr. Blanke raised the issue of the Transitions program for students with less academic preparation. There are 50 students in this group, with a limit of 11 credit hours and assigned tutors. The response was that the program is an experiment.

President Gilbert noted that questions for administrators will not usually be as lengthy.

Old Business:

There will be a vote for the modification of the By-laws at the October full senate meeting. The modification is to split off the public service portion of the Committee on Research & Public Service and create a new standing committee called Service & Outreach. Dan Sandweiss noted that the title of the Vice President is listed incorrectly in the amendment and President Gilbert stated that the title change will be taken as a friendly amendment.

President Gilbert noted that the executive committee of faculty senate meets a week ahead of time to set the agenda for the full senate.

A motion to adjourn was passed at 4:13 P.M.

Respectfully submitted,

Kathleen March



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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