FULL MINUTES OF SEPTEMBER 9, 2008
regular meeting of the 2008-2009
Agenda Item I. Call to Order
Janice Tovey, Chair of the Faculty called the meeting to order at 2:10 p.m.
Agenda Item II. Approval of Minutes
Agenda Item III. Special Order of the Day
A. Roll Call
Senators absent were: Professors Stapleton (Education), Robinson (Mathematics), Talente (Medicine), and McAuliffe and Jesse (Nursing).
Alternates present were: Schwager for Paul (Business), Ballard for Dosser (Child Development and Family Relations), Gabbard for Greene (Education), Stevens for Glascoff (Health and Human Performance), Felts for Vail-Smith (Health and Human Performance), Willson for Schenarts (Medicine), Boklage for Gilliland (Medicine), and Turner for Grymes (Music).
1. Terry Holland, Director of Athletics
and David Dosser, Chair of the University Athletics Committee’s Academic
Integrity Subcommittee will provide reports to the
2. We have the following one-year term vacancies on standing University Committees and ask that anyone interested please contact Janice Tovey, Chair of the Faculty, at email@example.com.
· Faculty Welfare Committee, regular member
Awards Committee, both Chair of the Faculty and
· Admission and Retention Policies Committee, Chair of the Faculty representative
and Career Education Committee,
· Libraries Committee, Chair of the Faculty representative
· Faculty Weekend Committee, Chair of the Faculty representative
Teaching Grants are due Tuesday, October 7, 2008, in the
4. Guidelines for the 2009-2010 Research/Creative Activity Grants will be available soon with a new grant submission deadline of early January 2009. The evaluation process will take place during the Spring semester, with the awarding of grants made for the full fiscal year July 1, 2009 – June 30, 2010, and announced by May 1, 2009. This will allow faculty receiving stipends to select either 2nd summer session 2009 or 1st summer session 2010 to receive the stipend. Once ready, grant applications will be available online at: http://www.ecu.edu/cs-acad/fsonline/rg/research.cfm. Faculty are encouraged to contact last year’s Committee Chair, Paul Gares at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions about the granting process.
Chancellor has approved the following resolutions from the April 22, 2008,
08-18 Report from Academic Awards Committee on UNC Tomorrow Report.
08-20 Proposal for faculty access to Student Opinion of Instruction Survey information on
08-21 Guidelines for Outcome Assessment of Foundations Courses (accepted as non-binding).
08-23 Report from Continuing and Career Education Committee on UNC Tomorrow Report.
08-24 Various requests for new concentrations, new programs, revisions to minors, titles,
and establishing requests.
08-25 Report from Educational Policies and Planning Committee on UNC Tomorrow Report.
08-26 Report from Faculty Governance Committee on UNC Tomorrow Report.
08-27 Revisions to ECU Faculty Manual, Part XII.B.2.a. and Part XII.B.3.a.
Health Sciences Library Unit Code of Operation.
08-30 Revised General Guidelines for Writing and Revising A Unit Code of Operation.
08-31 Report from University Budget Committee on UNC Tomorrow Report.
08-33 Curriculum matters contained in the minutes of the March 27, 2008 and
April 10, 2008, committee meetings.
08-34 Report from the University Curriculum Committee on UNC Tomorrow Report.
7. Faculty are eligible for the following university-wide teaching awards: Board of Governors Award for Excellence in Teaching, Board of Governors Distinguished Professor for Teaching Award, Alumni Award for Outstanding Teaching, and Max Ray Joyner Award for Faculty Service Through Continuing Education. A description of each award is available at: http://www.ecu.edu/cs-acad/fsonline/aa/academicawards.cfm. The nominations are due September 15, 2008, and portfolios of nominated faculty members are due November 1 (November 3, 2008). Evaluation materials submitted by past year’s winners are available for review in the Center for Faculty Excellence (Old Cafeteria, room 2305, 328-6470).
8. Faculty members not located on main campus (Allied Health Sciences, Health and Human Performance, Health Sciences Library, Medicine, and Nursing,) and who serve on various academic standing committees are reminded of special courtesy parking permits available from the office of Parking and Transportation Services. Special Courtesy Permits allow faculty members attending meetings, etc. to park in "A1/B1” lots on main campus. These permits are issued to unit heads at no charge and are to be used in conjunction with a paid parking permit. Additional information is available from Parking and Transportation Services at 328-1961.
9. Earlier an official call for nominations for the annual Lifetime and Five-Year University Research/Creative Activity Awards was distributed via email. The deadline for submission of materials (which includes 7 copies of departmental and unit review committee nominating letters, complete CV, and 3 letters from outside referees) is November 1, 2008 (November 3, 2008). Evaluation materials submitted by past year’s winners are available for review in the Center for Faculty Excellence (Old Cafeteria, room 2305, 328-6470). All relevant procedures are available online at: http://www.ecu.edu/cs-acad/fsonline/customcf/committee/aa/researchspecifics.htm.
interested in periodically receiving past copies of "The Chronicle of Higher Education" are asked to call the
11. The Senators were given the ECU Faculty Response to Phase I on the UNC Tomorrow Report drafted by Chair Mark Taggart in May 2008.
C. Steve Ballard, Chancellor
Chancellor Ballard welcomed all faculty senators to the new school year. He then recognized a student, Ira Lawson, who was “shadowing” the Chancellor for the day as part of an English assignment. The Chancellor indicated that he would address the budget today. As noted in his convocation address, the budget is the single biggest challenge that the University will face over the next two academic years. Dr. Ballard stated that he wanted to inform the senators about the context of the budget reductions, what happened in the last biennium and what is happening right now. He stated that he did not think the current budget will improve in the foreseeable future; however, it will certainly impact this academic year and probably will go into the next state biennium. The current budget situation will not improve in the near future, and it will certainly impact this academic year as well as the next biennial budget. Provided here are links to two specific documents relating to the budget: Memo from General Administration on Budget Reductions, Distribution of Permanent Budget Reductions.
Chancellor Ballard continued his discussion by stating that the University has experienced a budget cut back for the last seven years. The N. C. Legislature and the General Administration have taken a certain percentage of money from every state University to fund the priorities that are deemed the most important; or from University General Administration system, which is allocated out to the various universities. Usually about ten percent of the total cut comes to ECU; this is just become a routine part of the state process. This returned money has become a source of funds for other legislative initiatives. Some years it has been extremely small, $500,000 or so in some years, including the last biennium, while in some years it has been much more significant. This is political strategy; when the legislature needs $50 million dollars to fund something revenue is returned so that they can use to fund other priorities. It is an ongoing part of the state budgeting process.
Also over the last seven years
The past biennium, the last two years before the start of this academic year, ECU has had cuts from our base budget, or what the state calls the recurrent budget, of approximately $2.4 million. That is not huge in the scheme of things, but it is certainly enough to get the attention of the University administration. ECU has just submitted a week or two ago a plan for meeting those $2.4 in base budget cuts that were required over the last two years. At the same time that the $2.4 million in budget cuts were being taken the University is under significant pressure to increase enrollment growth to meet the so called eighty thousand problem, which is the anticipation of an increase in eighty thousand college age students in the University system over the next ten years. Every University has a target to be reached by the year 2017. The good news is that ECU is well ahead of our numbers, ECU is two years ahead of the enrollment growth target, and we can probably slow down at this point. The amount of growth experienced this year caught everybody by surprise. ECU is still expected to grow.
The third point that the Chancellor made is PACE reductions; these are efficiency goals and ECU has done better than the bigger universities in those efficiency goals. But that also means cut positions, vacancies not filled, and cuts in administrative staff. The only growth going on, other than special projects is enrollment growth. And that is the context of the last seven years. Now, today, there is even a more difficult situation; even though no cut has been announced yet. While this year no cuts have been announced yet, everyone who is monitoring the gap between projected growth in enrollment and actual revenue projections is projecting a huge gap. And that gap continues to get wider. This means every University in the system should anticipate mid year recessions.
President Bowles thinks that there will be a one time cut of between two to five percent mid semester reversion. A three per cent cut equates to $8.1 million in addition. A four percent cut would be over $10 million in addition to the $2.4 million recession that has just been given back in recurring expenditures. Thus, the total amount of money that will be given back will be in the range of $10 million to $14 million. There is a big difference between the one time cuts (non- recurring) and the recurrent give back because with the one time cuts we basically have to write a check for the money. However, the University can find the money in almost any way that it chooses. There are lots of ways to adapt to a one time cut that are certainly not common place in budgeting for a recurrent cut. The categories are certainly not the same. The projections are that there will be a parallel cut next spring that will be close to three to four percent. The University administration is considering options such a travel freeze on a temporary basis. This could save as much as $2 million a year.
In terms of tax receipts to the state, the
While these states have experienced cuts from twelve to
twenty percent North
The final point made by the Chancellor was that there are rules that have been made for what sources of University income can be used for the money that must be returned. They are much different now than they have been in the past. The two things that are the most significant are that enrollment growth money which the University has used historically can not be used. Financial aid is also not a possible source of funding the cuts. The kinds of things that the President and the Board of Governors are emphasizing are administrative cuts, middle management cuts, return of vacant positions, and smart cuts. Smart cuts and efficiencies are things that are not working; it also may be something the private sector can do more efficiently than is currently being done by University employees. It may also mean elimination of programs that are no longer meeting their goals or missions. These vertical cuts might be for administrative as well as academic programs that might have started fifteen years ago and might have outlived their usefulness. The executive council is making administrative cuts and consolidations in view of the $8.1 million dollars that we anticipate must be returned.
There are two or three other categories; everything that can be thought of is placed on the “possible list “and then decisions are made as to which things the University administration definitely does not want to do. One Vice Chancellor has already implemented an “informal chill”, as he calls it and not a freeze that no position can be advertised or contract signed can be made without his written approval. This is an example of a delaying tactic that is being used to save as much money as possible in view to the recessions that are expected.
Professor Zoller (Art and Design) stated that her department has had an incredible amount of enrollment; and a fifty percent growth in freshmen entering the department and it is becoming more and more difficult for us to maintain the quality of instruction. She asked about at what point will the University stop accepting students. The response from the Chancellor was that while we are not at the point of zero growth there will be a smaller level of enrollment growth, but what we will not cut is the faculty resources that are needed that are necessary to teach the courses.
Professor Mallison (Geology) asked about the sustainability and conservation efforts of the University and if energy conservation might be considered in finding sources for the money that must be returned. He offered examples such as the lights at the baseball, tennis, and football facilities being on at all hours, even when no one is there. The Chancellor responded that the University had done quite well, relative to the PACE initiates, in implementing energy conservation measures. An example mentioned was the serving of food without trays in the dining halls that saves both electricity and water. Perhaps more emphasis is needed on the communication of what has been done, and that the category of energy conservation will be a major category of savings to off set the money that will have to be returned.
Professor Stiller (Biology) asked the “zero sum game” of funding and what fraction of potential money being received will be given back later in the academic year? Chancellor Ballard responded that cuts might occur for items not essential to ECU Tomorrow and UNC Tomorrow, but that anything related to engaging the students in the classroom was not a possible cut. Those things that are most important must be prioritized and protected.
Professor Martinez (Foreign Languages and Literatures) asked about the distributed General Administration memo about budget reductions and asked if the cuts were from last year?
Niswander (Business/Academic Deans’ Representatives) clarified that the budget reductions included in the information distributed relates to budget cuts since July 1, 2008 and may include potential cuts in Spring 2009. The Chancellor responded that the actual amount of the budget cut back would be known after the election of the governor in November. He also said that the cutbacks would not occur equally from all departments. The cuts would be made deliberately.
Professor Martinez (Foreign Languages and Literatures) also
asked when the Chancellor would respond to
D. Marilyn Sheerer, Interim Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs
Interim Provost Sheerer stated that the University’s incoming resources are greater than what had been given back thus far this year. The $9 million in enrollment growth resources has not yet been distributed because the decision has not been made about how to disperse the money between units. The half percent that was discussed as being taken across the board was not taken equally among all programs and units. Some of the programs and units have more money than other areas and decisions were made about where the cuts can best be absorbed. Underfunded units might have a less than half percent cut while over budgeted units might have a cut of one percent. One of the leading factors in the funding matrix is the student credit hours; in addition to student credit hours, research efforts are being considered in the funding matrix.
Interim Provost Sheerer reported that this past year she and David Weismiller visited almost every department in the University. And in those meetings two things came up consistently: How are we going to handle continued enrollment growth and what is the quality of the entering freshmen students.
The actual enrollment for this Fall is 27,703 students, which exceeded our fall projected enrollment by 1,052. The incoming freshman class for the year 2012 was projected to be 4,510 and is currently 4,516 students. The University greatly exceeded their expectations which concerned many. The number of freshmen who would accept admission to ECU was under projected and the University’s yield was better than we expected it to be.
It was noted that Judi Bailey, chair of the Strategic Enrollment Management Task Force, was preparing their final report for presentation to the next Board of Trustees meeting. That report is expected to make some changes in the number of students expected to enter next fall and in the academic standards for admitting students. For example, the suggestion has been made that no one be admitted with an SAT score of less than 900. A higher GPA is anticipated with the GPA of this entering freshman class at 3.082 and the SAT average at 1026. This SAT score is seven points higher than last year. Interim Provost stated that the decision was made to lower the size of the next freshman class, with a limitation on the number of students transferring from community colleges. Another option being discussed is to not accept readmits.
Professor Wang (Geography) asked about the current SAT and what score was ECU using now as the predicted GPA. Judi Bailey reported that the SAT and the projected GPA were the means recommended by the University of North Carolina System and if there was a deciding factor in addition to these criteria the written part of the SAT could be used as a determinant. Dr. Bailey also said that she expects there might be some modifications made at the system level when the enrollment managers from the various universities meet at General Administration this fall.
Professor Sprague (Physics) asked what the breakdown of the new 48 faculty positions were, i.e. face-to-face versus distance education. It was noted that the positions were just granted as positions and that the division would determined by priorities, as well as, student credit hour production when distributing those positions.
Professor Martinez (Foreign Languages and Literatures) stated that within her unit, faculty were offered positions in April/May but the faculty did not receive actual contracts until late August. The Interim Provost concurred with the need to speed up the process of providing contracts for employment and stated that means for doing this are currently under consideration.
Professor Novick (Medicine) asked when the 48 faculty allocations will be made. Dr. Sheerer indicated that she hoped to get the student credit hour data in next week so we can begin making decisions.
Professor Wilson (Sociology) asked if faculty could receive the matrix funding model that administration uses to derive their faculty determination. Dr. Sheerer stated that the matrix funding model was the way the University received its funding and that the Senators needed to understand how it all worked. She suggested that Chair Tovey work to have a presentation made to the group on this very specific mathematical formula.
Professor Rigsby (Geology/Faculty Assembly Delegate) clarified that the matrix funding model details how General Administration funds universities and not how the money is distributed to academic units.
E. Janice Tovey, Chair of the Faculty
Professor Tovey first thanked Dorothy Muller and her staff at the Center for Faculty Excellence for providing a meaningful and informative experience for our new faculty during orientation week. She stated that it was a great pleasure for her to take part in the activities and to receive positive feedback from the new faculty.
Chair Tovey stated that the Provost Search committee candidates were on campus and that the schedule for these presentations were distributed earlier. She reminded faculty members that this is a crucial hire for the University and requires the participation of as many faculty members as possible. She stated that the committee began work at the close of the spring semester and conducted video interviews in late July. The committee invited four strong candidates to campus and that faculty members make up about ½ the committee. Those serving along with Janice Tovey include David Dosser, Elizabeth Hodge, Brenda Killingsworth, Bob Morrison, Mark Taggart, and Marianna Walker.
Chair Tovey thanked all of
the Senators who had stepped up to volunteer for committees. Lori put out a
call on my behalf for senators and alternates to fill ex officio positions.
Thank you. And thanks to all of you who serve on these committees. There were
still openings for senators or alternates on 3 committees and all were encouraged
to contact the
Chair Tovey stated that many of you have had questions about enrollment management—especially with the largest freshman class this year. Marianna Walker, Hunt McKinnon and I, along with other faculty members, serve as members of the Task Force looking at options for helping control our rampant growth. Judi Bailey is presenting the committee’s preliminary report with recommendations to the Board of Trustees at their next meeting—in a couple of weeks—and will report to the Senate at our October meeting. The report contains options for discussion and debate. She stated that she hopes the Senators would consider these seriously and ask questions of Judi and the task force members.
Finally, this year, Chair Tovey stated that she has asked the Admission and Retention Policies Committee to review and recommend revisions as necessary to Part 4 of the ECU Faculty Manual on academic integrity. The Committee was also charged to work with David Conde in Academic Affairs and Kemal Atkins in Student Affairs to review and coordinate policies concerning grade appeals, honor code, and other integrity issues.
No questions were asked of Chair Tovey at this time.
F. Larry Boyer, Dean of Academic Library
Director Boyer stated that the Institutional Repository Project is a joint venture of Academic Library Services and the Health Sciences Library. Last year a task force was formed to research other Institutional Repositories (I.R.) and suggest the selection software and hardware necessary to build and host an Institutional Repository.
A brochure that explains IR’s in general and ECU’s The Scholarship was distributed. An Institutional Repository is a digital collection capturing and preserving the intellectual output of an academic community. IR’s are the outgrowth of the Open Access movement. Open Access literature is digital, online, free of charge & free of most copyright and licensing restrictions. Librarians and the scholarly community have been dissatisfied with the traditional print and electronic journal pricing and marketing strategy. For example ECU pays more than $4M a year to access online journals, which, for the most part contain, articles provided to the publishers free of cost. Publishers want to maintain tight control of information in order to protect and increase their profits. Scholars want free and easy access to information and librarians want to provide this. Scholars also want to guard their copyright as well, and librarians, many of whom are also authors, understand and support that right. The IR will not insert itself into the peer review process; it simply will be a way to provide a means of reporting self achievement.
The Institutional Repository movement is
not something new—many colleges and universities across the country ; for
example Harvard University’s College of Arts & Science’s faculty voted to
require deposit in the Harvard IR.
From a recent faculty survey, the Library
has learned that an ECU Institutional Repository is important to only about
thirty percent of our faculty., but he was also willing to bet as time goes by
and as the impact of other IR’s grow, we will see more faculty understanding
and actively supporting this initiative.
Director Boyer admitted that the ECU Scholarship IR has gotten off to a
slower start than envisioned, but we are now prepared to move ahead. He stated that he wanted to thank those
members of the faculty in the
During the fall semester representatives from Academic Library Services will be coming to departments, schools, and colleges talking about the IR and seeking more depositors. The library will also provide workshops and individual help on the deposit process. Dr. Boyer ended his presentation stating that he and others needed faculty’s help and participation to make this a successful and useful tool.
Professor Boklage (Medicine) asked what formats were acceptable for this project. Dr. Boyer responded that word documents and pdf files would be best.
Professor Stiller (Biology) asked if the new institutional repository could be interfaced with Sedona. Dr. Boyer responded that this was not possible at this time.
Professor Jenks (History) asked for more information on requiring faculty to use this new repository. He stated that the greater exposure that was an objective noted on the distributed brochure could actually have a negative impact on the work getting published. Dr. Boyer responded that he would be happy to send anyone links to the question of copywriting, but that he did not want to comment on this because of the technical nature of copy write laws.
Professor Wang (Geography) asked who covered the copyright expenses. Dr. Boyer offered to discuss this further with anyone after the meeting.
G. Kimberly Baker-Flowers, Chief Diversity Officer
Ms. Baker-Flowers stated that a diversity plan has existed in some form since the late 1990s and that the Chancellor’s Diversity Task Force took over the implementation of a diversity plan in 2006 and is currently working on an updated diversity action plan. She stated that the purpose of this Action Plan for Diversity is to give ECU a template to begin the action steps for making the campus a more inclusive environment. This document includes challenges that have been identified by the climate survey as well as several years’ worth of work and recommendations from consultants and various groups on campus. The goals of the Diversity Action Plan are be integral to the UNC Tomorrow efforts and to offer a template for increasing diversity on campus.
The template could then be used to visit colleges and units within the University to display what works within various cultures in order to move forward.
Ms. Baker-Flowers indicated that many academic units know their students, staff, and faculty best and know how to progress. She said she wanted to move into the action phase of the diversity plan as quickly as possible. While the process is fluid she would like to have the colleges and departments work on an action plan and use the template as a score card. She noted that there was a speaker’s bureau and a number of authors on the topic of diversity would be invited as keynote speakers at ECU. However, she stated that nothing would be mandatory since diversity is a personal goal and participation and commitment can be encouraged but must be voluntary. Ms. Baker-Flowers asked for program suggestions from the faculty body that might be helpful in raising the consciousness of the University.
(Music) asked how we were going to hold ECU accountable and what dialogues were
taking place within the various academic units. Ms. Baker-Flowers stated that
she would like the Diversity Action Plan to be focused at the college level and
Professor Sharer (English) asked about the plan to develop programs for non-English/non-native English speaking residents on campus. Ms. Baker-Flowers stated that her office is partnering with International Affairs to develop such programs. She invited anyone with any creative ideas to share them with her.
Professor Gabbard (Education) found problems with retaining faculty due to the community climate outside of the ECU campus. He asked if the University was going to be more active in engaging the community’s minority groups in promoting change and encouraging acceptance of diverse groups. Ms. Baker-Flowers stated that she wanted to have her office be more inclusive and that one outlet would be the Chancellors Community Advisory Council as well as working within the school system for K-12 education efforts.
Professor Deena (English) asked what the University was doing to support international faculty, i.e. with visas, climate and culture as it pertains to diversity. Ms. Baker-Flowers stated that the International Affairs Office and her office would be working on addressing retention specifically since student and faculty retention was a major concern. Professor Walker (Allied Health Sciences) noted that ECU’s speech and language academic unit provides services to students with language problems.
Professor Levine (Medicine) asked about the earlier stated policy to admit students with a higher minimum SAT score and how would this be balanced with efforts to promote a diverse climate within the student populations. Professor Matthews (Anthropology) stated that more resources were needed to implement ways to recruit more diverse faculty and asked if there was money in Ms. Baker-Flowers’ office budget to cover this. Professor Matthews also asked how the University was marketing international students with no tuition assistance. Ms. Baker-Flowers stated that her office would work to recruit a more diverse faculty and thought having speakers like Carolyn Turner to talk about best practices in recruiting and retaining a diverse faculty was beneficial. She also raised the consideration of how faculty are approached and that faculty make decisions to come and to stay at a school based on how they are treated as well as how they are paid, with there being more than one form of compensation.
(Medicine) stated that in contrast to what was said, not all faculty were
tenure track nor would they achieve what was referred to earlier. He raised the
fact that almost two thirds of the faculty with the
(Child Development and Family Relations) asked if there was a working
definition of “diverse faculty” that is being used by Ms. Baker-Flowers in her
role as Chief Diversity Officer. For example, in the
H. David Weismiller, Chair of SACS Self Study
Dr. Weismiller stated that the accrediting standards used by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools - Commission on Colleges are contained in the 2008 Handbook.
SACS accreditation is a faculty effort; he said that the visit to ECU is just around the corner in the year 2013. There is a SACS website and in the SACS website is an organizational structure.
And all the archival information over the last twelve months is archived on this website.
Dr. Weismiller also reported that the Outcomes Assessment Program Review Council is hard at work. Their task is to assist in increasing an understanding and commitment to ongoing planning and evaluation from the program level throughout the University. A component is the Quality Enhancement Plan which focuses on student learning. ECU is looking toward developing a culture of evidence, according to Dr. Weismiller, that will introduce comprehensive systems for the collection, utilization and dissemination of data on improving student outcomes. The Faculty Credential Council is working on a compliance certification document. This document provides consistent guidelines for peer review, representing the collective judgment of the adequate faculty credentials and standards appropriate for the assurance of quality in higher education.
Professor Wilson (Sociology) asked if Sedona would be kept. Dr. Weismiller suggested that faculty continue to use this faculty database. He stated that it may not be ideal but it is the system that we will be working with for the next two or three years. Any of the systems that we are looking at have an electronic portfolio attached to them and we are trying to make sure that all the systems will “speak” with Sedona.
Professor Rigsby (Geology/Faculty Assembly Delegate) asked how much does the performance management system cost, what are the priorities, databases, etc. It was stated that for one system, Live Text, at 9,000 students there is no cost to the institution. The cost to the student is $45, including one year afterwards. It banks on the assumption that each student will be required to subscribe and that will continue to use the system even after graduation. Another system would cost the University $60,000.
I. Question Period
Other than questions posed to Professor Weismiller (noted above), there were no further questions asked of the administrators at this time.
Agenda Item IV. Unfinished Business
There was no unfinished business to come before the body at this time.
Agenda Item V. Report of Committees
A. Educational Policies and Planning Committee
Professor Dale Knickerbocker, Vice
Chair of the Committee, presented for review and acceptance the Request for
Authorization to Establish PhD
Program in Curriculum and Instruction in the
B. Faculty Welfare Committee
Professor Bruce Southard (English), Past Chair of the Committee, presented the Committee’s response to the UNC Tomorrow Report. There was no discussion and the Committee’s response to the UNC Tomorrow Report was approved as presented. RESOLUTION #08-37
C. Unit Code Screening Committee
Professor Andrew Morehead (Chemistry), Chair of the Committee, presented the revised Department of Psychology Unit Code of Operation. There as no discussion and the revised Department of Psychology Unit Code of Operation was approved as presented. RESOLUTION #08-38
Agenda Item VI. New Business
Professor David Long (History), an Alternate to the
WHEREAS, it has long been a tradition and procedure at ECU to conduct votes relating to the conferral of tenure, the promotion in rank of tenured and tenure-track faculty, and the contract renewal of probationary faculty, under a veil of secrecy by voting to enter into executive session; and,
WHEREAS, the purpose of going into executive session is in order to allow for an open and honest discussion of the reasons why a faculty member should or should not be conferred permanent tenure, a higher rank, or continued employment as a member of the faculty, while protecting the anonymity of the voting members of the committee especially with respect to any negative opinions they may have about the person under consideration; and,
WHEREAS, the inevitable consequence of such procedure is that committee members are shielded in the expression of attitudes that are sometimes based upon personal malice or hearsay impressions, and in some instances those expressions may constitute lies or misrepresentations of what is true; and,
WHEREAS, the conferral of permanent tenure is a property right even if it is less than fully developed during the tenure track period; and,
WHEREAS, the right to receive promotion and contract renewal as provided for by the ECU Faculty Code, and in accordance with the conditions set forth in that Code, are property rights possessed by the faculty members from the time they enter into employment contracts with the University; and,
WHEREAS, even beyond the fact that the aforementioned property rights exist, the experience of receiving a negative tenure vote, or a negative vote on promotion or contract extension, has a potentially devastating effect on the professional reputation and prospects of future employment of the affected faculty member.
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the
Professor Roberts (Philosophy) moved to forward the resolution on transparency to the Faculty Governance Committee for their discussion and consideration. The motion was approved. RESOLUTION #08-39
There was no additional business to come before the
Hunt McKinnon Lori Lee
Secretary of the Faculty
Department of Interior Design and Merchandising
FACULTY SENATE RESOLUTIONS APPROVED AT THE SEPTEMBER 9, 2008, MEETING
08-36 Request for Request for
Authorization to Establish PhD
Program in Curriculum and Instruction in the
08-37 Faculty Welfare Committee’s response to the UNC Tomorrow Report, as follows:
Impact of Enrollment Growth on Faculty Welfare
Tomorrow report mandates enrollment growth across the constituent campuses of
the UNC System. In response to this
Faculty welfare is intrinsic to the quality of the University. The issues that affect faculty welfare are broad ranging and are inextricably interwoven with issues that affect our students and the quality of education. There is a serious concern among the faculty at ECU that our long history of underfunding, particularly in terms of funds allocated per student enrolled, will be further exacerbated by increased enrollment. This single factor could have a chilling effect on faculty welfare through depletion of already scarce resources and could significantly undermine the future development of our University. The continued scarcity of financial support commensurate with University size and growth will be detrimental to the construction of offices, classrooms, laboratories and other physical facilities that are used by faculty and students. It will have adverse consequences for the recruitment, retention and professional development of faculty and it will limit the opportunity to develop programs that expand the connections between the University and the citizens and region we serve.
While a diminished financial base will impact all areas of University development, enrollment growth will affect other aspects of University life that are viewed as central to faculty welfare. Physical space is at a premium at ECU. The immediate manifestation of this lack of space is a general shortage of offices, classrooms and laboratories. The existing level of crowding at ECU is already a matter of concern and without significant investment in ‘bricks and mortar’ will certainly be exacerbated by projected enrollment increases. Crowding generates inevitable deterioration of indoor and outdoor environments, contributes to stress and can have adverse health consequences, all of which are issues related to faculty welfare. Consider the perennial nightmare of parking, which is a surrogate for all the problems associated with crowding. Unfortunately, ECU’s past successes in garnering resources for the construction of buildings and acquisition of green space is poor, as exemplified by the serious existing level of crowding.
We are also concerned that increased enrollment will impact the student to faculty ratio in a negative way. A decline in the number of faculty per student puts added strain on faculty members who are intent on maintaining a tradition of close interaction with students. ECU has historically prided itself in its ‘small University’ feel, much of which derives from the commitment of faculty to a high level of interaction with students. An increasing student to faculty ratio seriously threatens our commitment to our students and will very likely create a less congenial atmosphere, one with an impersonal feel in which student-faculty relations become more distant and strained.
Thus, one of the core issues for today and tomorrow is a careful assessment of the best means to deliver high quality education, whether faculty and students are located at a distance or on campus. The question is, during a time of burgeoning technology and increasing student enrollment, how do we grow and maintain a vibrant, engaged faculty and student population who contribute to the University’s goals? The issue involves effective connection with ECU’s learning community as well as the quality and sustainability of that learning.
particular, Distance Education (DE) faculty and students cannot be merely
‘add-ons’. They must be intelligently incorporated into the mainstream of
campus learning and campus life. Current full-time faculty need to be
engaged and involved in developing a learning model that works for all
students. Yet evidence of erosion in our ‘small University’
feel is already manifesting, particularly among faculty who participate in
distance education programs. ECU has
already stepped beyond its physical campus boundaries and is recognized as a
major provider of online education. While 88% of the students taking only DE
courses reside outside
Enrollment increases without attendant financial resources also place a burden on administrators who will be faced with decisions concerning whether to allocate limited resources to faculty salaries or benefits. We already suffer from marginal health care and retirement benefits and we have witnessed a system-wide decline in support for these programs. A further decrease in these benefits threatens to create an atmosphere of discord that is contrary to a high-quality working environment and presents risks in retention of faculty as well as increased difficulty in recruitment of new faculty. As ECU looks toward a brighter future, we can ill afford a policy of rapid enrollment growth uncoupled from a commensurate level of financial support.
08-38 Revised Department of Psychology
Unit Code of Operation.
08-39 Resolution on transparency was referred to the Faculty Governance Committee for their discussion and consideration.
Disposition: Faculty Governance Committee