University Senate Links
Date: June 21, 2002
The eighth regular meeting of the University Senate met on May 6, 2002 in Rooms 314-316 of the University Union. Chairperson Holter called the meeting to order at 4:05 p.m.
Professor Siegel was excused. Student members Stuckey and Zimmerman were absent.
Professor Anthony, Secretary, forwarded a request submitted to the Executive Committee for a change in the agenda to allow discussion of a proposal from the Academic Computing Committee to change the committee name and charge. The Parliamentarian ruled that it would be up to the body to accept the request or not.
Professor William Sadera, Chairperson of the Academic Computing Committee, spoke to the request. Professor Gallagher noted that we have a Senate Rewrite Subcommittee to deal with changes of committee structure and procedures.
Professor Sadera noted that there is some urgency to reformat this committee because of the need to address the Regents request for provisions for implementing the guidelines for technology fluency for all students. Interim Provost Leather concurred that there is need for change here and that the committee needs to be enlarged to have representatives from each college.
After some further discussion:
Professor Zimmerman moved, Professor Berlanstein seconded a motion: To direct each college council to establish a technology committee by September for the purpose of addressing the issues outlined in the suggested guidelines from the Academic Computing Committee (Motion: 01 /02-19).
Professor Zimmerman noted that this motion doesn't address the requested changes in the Academic Computing Committee.
It was decided that the Senate Rewrite Subcommittee would address these issues this summer when they meet.
The question was called. The motion passed: 20/0/1.
Professor Nelson asked for another addition to the agenda: To consider a motion from the College of Science and Mathematics.
"The Council of the College of Science and Mathematics asks that the Faculty Senate of Towson University support resolution of April 5, 2002 requesting that the College of Extended Programs rescind its proposed changes to the calculations for faculty summer compensation."
There was no objection to adding this to the agenda.
The Minutes of the April 1 and April 9, 2002 meetings were approved as distributed.
REPORTS OF EX OFFICIO SENATORS
Interim President Jones announced that the University has many concerns about the budget and is trying to get a hold of the financial decisions. We have a plan for reductions without causing layoffs or a reduction in positions. We do, however, need to do a staffing study and examine the efficiency of the staff we presently have. Conversion of contractual employees positions to PINs and the reduction of PINs are outstanding issues.
Towson plans to increase tuition 5.5% along with other institutions in the USM system.
The University plans to implement a $120 technology fee per year and drop the present lab fees and general education fees charged in certain courses. This will stabilize the ability to collect revenue from students and allow us to realistically address certain fiscal needs. The administration will be meeting to examine how best to use this money and what it will mean to each college. We will also standardize the major fee and other specialty fees. These changes will bring Towson's policies in line with practices at other institutions.
The Presidents' Council has asked that the System put into place a new plan for bringing the new chancellor on board. It asks that Chancellor Kirwan spend time on each campus with their respective leaders. They also discussed the need to look at the organization of the System so that it will be more than a regulatory and accountability agency.
Regarding the search for a new President for Towson University:
The Board of Regents will be consulting about the composition of the search team. It wants a swift and efficient search that will hopefully have a new President in place by January. It also promises to make the search public in the late stages.
Questions of Interim President Jones:
Mr. Crusante asked if the new fee structure would affect the SGA income. Answer: No.
Professor Vatz asked if Interim President Jones would be a candidate for permanent President. Answer: Absolutely not! He also stated that he will not be using the house.
Professor Vatz also asked if Towson will be "punished" for the events that have happened. Answer: No. If anything the Board of Regents is more aware that Towson is an Institution that knows what it is and where it is going and will not be trampled on.
Professor Sullivan asked if the distribution of the Technology fee has been decided. Answer: The administration will meet with the Council of Deans and department chairs to determine a plan. We have to provide a revenue stream for repairs and upkeep of technology.
Professor Chen asked where the idea for the new fee structure came from. Answer: We received guidelines from the system regarding the issue of fees and tuition increase. We made a proposal to the Board of Regents that was approved at the end of last week.
Professor Whitman asked if we were going to be able to preserve faculty replacements. Answer: We must put together a plan for staffing requests. At this point it appears we will be able to replace faculty retirements, resignations, and transitional leaves.
Interim President Jones also stated that he will sit with the Senate ex-officio. He hopes we will build into the Senate structure a means for Senate involvement in administrative areas that it has not previously been involved in, such as budget planning.
Vice-President Rubin says that he sees great support for this institution around the state. He is optimistic. Although there has been some fall-off in donations to the phonathon and direct mail campaigns, the major donors do not seem deterred. He thanks the deans for discussions with him regarding fund raising plans for each college. He is now working on a plan for the 2003 campaign. He also thanks all who sent representation to the planned giving conference. He also thanks the system in helping in fundraising efforts.
Vice-President Parker announced three events this week:
Athletic awards: Monday, May 6.
We have received a record number of applications for on-campus housing. An unusually large number of freshmen want to live on campus: 78-79%. We guarantee on-campus housing to all freshmen who submit their deposits by the deadline. Millennium Hall is full for next year.
The new Shepherd Pratt housing is only 50% full at this point. He offered some speculation as to why it is not selling as well as expected.
Professor Sullivan (AAUP-Faculty Association) reported on the annual meeting the prior week. General Elections are moving forward. His Senate Ad Hoc Committee plans to have a draft of the medical leave proposal soon.
Mr. Crusante (SGA) congratulated Dr. Jones. He also welcomed back Vice-President Parker. The new administration will be sworn in on Thursday. Tiger Fest attracted 2-3000 persons. On behalf of the SGA Mr. Crusante presented Chairperson Holter with an engraved clock.
Professor Anthony reported that he represented the Senate at the recent Executive Committee of CUSF.
Chairperson Holter announced that she has appointed an Ad Hoc Nominating Committee to develop a slate of officers for the University Senate for academic year 2002-2003. She also stated that a permanent nominating structure for officers should be developed by the Ad Hoc Nominating Committee. She explained that the Ad Hoc Nominating Committee consists of Professors Blake, Gissendanner, Vatz, Zimmerman, and Mr. Crusante. She explained that the Ad Hoc Nominating Committee consist of 2 at-large Senators, 2 Senators in colleges where there is no officer currently, and 1 student member. Professor Zimmerman suggested that the committee structure should be submitted for approval. Professor Gissendanner agreed to direct the present Nominating Committee in terms of developing a structure and procedures for a permanent nominating committee.
Ms. Berlanstein (Member-at-Large) noted that there is some information regarding Senate Committees still missing from the Senate WEB page.
Professor Zimmerman inquired about the distribution of the Governor's response to the Senate's letter regarding the Board of Regents. Chairperson Holter said that she had requested the letter be put on the Senate WEB page, but apparently it has not been at this point.
Professor Nelson moved, Professor Davani seconded a motion: The Council of the College of Science and Mathematics asks that the Faculty Senate of Towson University support the CSM resolution of April 5, 2002 requesting that the College of Extended Programs rescind its proposed changes to the calculations for faculty compensation." (Motion 01 /02-20)
The CSM Resolution is as follows:
"The College of Science and Mathematics recognizes and values highly the unique learning opportunities established by using faculty instructors in our laboratory course sessions, and considers the 1-on-1 dialogue between the instructor and the students in these sessions to be a crucial part of our many and varied academic programs helping to fulfill the 'Towson Promise'."
The College of Science and Mathematics also recognizes that the amount of skill and effort required of course instructors running successful laboratory sessions is fully comparable to the skill and effort required of course instructors during lecture sessions, both in and out of class, and that this comparability has been recognized historically by Towson University through the well-established tradition of calculating both College faculty course loads and College faculty off-load course compensation on the basis of the 1:1 equality of contact hours and credit hours.
Furthermore, the College of Science and Mathematics steps forward to help seek a mutually acceptable solution to the financial difficulties faced by the University through its tradition of collecting College student tuition income by credit hour yet paying College faculty by contact hour; but a solution which will not erode the core academic values of the College, values which have played such a long-standing role in identifying Towson University as a unique student- and learning-centered institution.
The College of Science and Mathematics strongly opposes the proposed method to increase the net income generated by the Summer Session through a process of selectively diminishing financial compensations only of those faculty members responsible for teaching laboratory sessions because the proposed method not only inappropriately separates our dedicated faculty into two unequal groups but also serves to erode the core academic values of our programs designed to foster student learning in mathematics and the sciences."
Interim President Jones addressed the issue by providing some history of the increased compensation for summer school teaching based on the hope that this would increase enrollments. As a part of this process the University made commitments to address other unfunded needs, most particularly lectureships, which at this point represent $1.9 million. However the enrollments have not increased. Historically we do not equate contact and credit for laboratory teaching and it is not so done in our peer institutions in the system or across the country. He did, however, make a commitment to study how to increase revenues in the Summer Sessions so that we might seriously consider ways to retain if possible the equity of contact hours to credit hours.
There was considerable discussion of the problem and the practices that have led to the crisis. Dean Howard Nixon noted that policies and procedures for faculty compensation have been established for this summer. Professor Vatz suggested that the Senate schedule another meeting this month to consider the issue and the motion.
Professor Nordulf Debye, Chair of the CSM Council addressed the Senate pleading for a solution on the grounds of maintaining quality of instruction and suggesting that the tuition and lab fees could support this if less money was taken for Summer School overhead.
It was agreed to reconvene next week (May 13) to dispose of this motion.
The Senate recessed until May 13.
The Senate reconvened on Monday, May 13, 2002 at 4:12 p.m.
Professors Cox and Stevens-Ratchford were absent; Professor Davani was excused. Student members were absent.
Professor Vatz moved, Professor Siegel seconded a substitute resolution: In view of the lack of sufficient vetting by the Towson University community, the University Senate opposes the cutting of summer pay for lab instruction as arbitrary and selective.
Interim President Jones distributed a chart showing load computation figures.
Professor Nelson stated that Provost Haeger had made a policy leaving work load distribution to the chairs. Interim President Jones stated that the monies from summer tuition and fees go into lectureships and we simply can't afford to keep doing it this way.
Professor Gallagher suggested that we try to find the money for this summer and then study the problem to work out a solution for next summer.
Chairperson Holter asked what part the Extended Programs College Committee played in the decision. Professor Gissendanner stated that the committee did discuss these issues and that the summer school policy document is a compromise given the fact that the University has to use summer school revenues to pay for a number of other items.
Interim President Jones stated that the University is working on solving the lectureship problem.
The substitute motion was reworded as follows:
In view of the lack of sufficient vetting by the Towson University community the University Senate opposes the handling of the summer pay issue and suggests that policies related to compensation and workload for summer and minimesters be studied.
The discussion was interrupted temporarily so that the Senate could meet with Interim Chancellor Joseph Vivona and Katie Ryan, USM Chief of Staff and Secretary to USM Board of Regents to discuss the procedures for appointing the Search Committee for a new President of Towson University.
Various members of the Senate spoke to concerns we have as to the size of the committee, the openness of the procedures, the quality of the search firm, and the time frame.
Chancellor Vivona asked that the University Senate submit nominations for the Search Committee by the end of the month.
Chairperson Holter thanked Chancellor Vivona and Ms. Ryan for meeting with us. After they left the Senate discussed procedures to formulate nominations. It was decided for Senators to submit names to Ms. Berlanstein via e-mail by Friday, May 17.
The Senate will reconvene in executive session on Monday, May 20 to discuss names and draw up a list of nominations to be forwarded to Ms. Ryan.
The Senate then returned to discussion of Professor Vatz' substitute motion regarding the summer pay for laboratory instructors.
Ultimately it was tabled.
The Senate recessed at 6:05 p.m.
The Senate reconvened in executive session on May 20, 2002.
Ms. Berlanstein was excused; Professors Stevens-Ratchford and Zimmerman were absent. Student members were absent.
Professor Nelson reported that representatives of the College of Science and Mathematics had met with Interim President Jones and had come to an understanding for solving the faculty compensation problem for this summer.
The substitute motion was reworded as follows:
The sense of the University Senate is that the summer pay issue is a complex problem that has been insufficiently vetted. The Senate suggests that current and future policies related to compensation and workload for summer and minimester be studied further and include participation of affected faculty.
The motion passed 13/0/1.
The Senate then turned to the business of selecting names for nomination to the Presidential Search Committee.
After some discussion it was decided to recommend:
The Senators divided into groups by College and each group selected three names from the list of names that had been nominated. One librarian was also selected
The Senate also made the following recommendations to the Search Committee:
1. That it be an open search
The meeting adjourned.
James M. Anthony, Secretary
The University Senate usually meets the first Monday of each month during the fall and spring semesters. The Executive Committee of the University Senate invites all interested parties to attend the meetings in the University Union.
Copies of documents relevant to agenda items are available at the Faculty Reserve Desk in Cook Library. Recordings of meetings are located in the Cook Library in the Media Resource Services area on the second floor.