Members Present: Adler, Barut, Bolin, Beeson, Bryant, Celestin. Carruthers, Close, Decker, DeSilva, DiLollo, Hemans, Horn, Jacobs, Jeffres, Johnson, Klunder, Kumar, Lewis, Moore-Jansen, Rillema, Rokosz, Ross, Russell, Skinner, M.Smith, Solomey, Toops, Yeager
Members Absent: Driessen, Gibson, Henry, Hull, Mandt, Miller, Mukeerjee, Pulaski, P. Smith, Thompson, Yildirim
Members Excused: Matveyeva, Mosack
I. Call to Order
President Steven Skinner called the meeting to order at 3:30pm
II. Informal Statements and Proposals - None
III. Approval of the Minutes
The minutes of the February 13, 2012, meeting of the Faculty Senate were approved with no dissent.
IV. President’s Report
1. Kansas Board of Regents
a. Last meeting the Council of FS Presidents talked to the board about salary issues – fact that there has not been a merit raise in three years. Right now it looks as though funding will remain at 2006 levels, thus any increase in faculty salaries will have to come from tuition funding.
b. Earlier this year the CFSP requested that the Regents develop a one-page handout of the advantages of higher education for distribution to public and legislators. They did that, and it featured the impact of education on the economy and the quality of life. The Faculty senate presidents were not sure if the Reagent’s action was because of the faculty senate presidents, but they thanked the board.
2. Presidential Search. Three on-campus interviews are scheduled for April 8-11 and an additional two have been scheduled for April 15-17. Meetings with the faculty are being planned, but no decision yet on whether the Faculty Senate will have a separate session or not. The search committee made it clear that they were seeking faculty feedback on the candidates that visit the campus. Senator Moore-Jansen asked for an opinion of just how serious the committee was about faculty input, and Senator Ross (a faculty representative on the search committee) insisted that the committee was very serious. Senator Jeffres stressed the point that technology does not replace faculty involvement. Senator Klunder asked if the candidates would meet with the faculty separately; Ross confirmed that they would. David Wright asked what the process was after the campus visits. Ross responded that the committee would provide the Board of Regents with an unranked list of three to five acceptable candidates, and the Board would make the final decision.
3. President’s Distinguished Service Awards will be given at the Shocker Pride Celebration on May 3, 2012, starting at 3:00pm.
4. The Faculty Awards Ceremonies and General Faculty Meeting have been scheduled for May 4, 2012, starting at 2:30pm in room 211 Hubbard Hall. The faculty meeting will begin at approximately 3:45pm.
5. The Planning and Budget Committee has completed its evaluation of retention proposals and recommended seven proposals for funding. Interim Provost Pickus has agreed to the recommendations of the committee and letters of support will be transmitted shortly.
6. Conceal carry – In the present Kansas House bill, universities and hospitals are exempt and may continue to prohibit guns on their campuses.
V. Committee Reports
Senator Ross, chair of Rules committee, announced that two grievances were in progress. He urged every college to adhere to faculty evaluation rules “to the letter,” and to get the Faculty Senate involved as early as possible if difficulties arise in the process.
VI. WSU Foundation Report
Dr. Elizabeth King, President of the WSU Foundation, presented her annual report of the activities of the WSU Foundation. The Foundation raised a total of $17, 593,506 in 2011 from 13,575 donors (7,568 alums, 1,373 organizations, foundations, corporations, and 4,634 non-alums). Of this, $13,872,836 went to the University, with $3,609,684 in scholarships and $1,682,421 in faculty support. Dr. King reported that 315 faculty and staff contributed $175,000 in 2011. As of now, the outlook for 2012 does not look as promising. The Foundation has total assets of a little over $224 million and ranks 90th on the list of all university endowments. Near-term priorities include: 100 new planned gifts by June 30, 2012;$3 million for the Miro Mosaic by 2016, partial funding for the RSC renovation, and a probable new major campaign sparked by the new university president, and raising the required dollar-for-dollar match for the $3.5 million coming to the University as a result of Senate Bill 127. Senator Klunder asked if the Foundation had ever considered a sliding six- or eight-year scale for pay-outs rather than the current five-year sliding scale. Dr. King said no, but that it could provide greater stability to the scheduled pay-outs from the foundation, and that perhaps they should give the suggestion consideration. Dr. King closed by reminding the senate of the significant impact that the faculty has on gifts from the alumni. Students generally form a warm attachment to the University because of positive interactions with the faculty.
VII. New Grade Policy in regard to Federal Financial Aid Regulations – David Wright, Assistant to the Provost, gave a presentation regarding the federal requirements for reporting the last date of academic activity for students receiving an incomplete, no-grade, or failing grade in a course. Last year the university had to pay approximately $0.5 million to the government as a result of inadequate reporting of this “date of last academic activity.” As a consequence, when reporting grades, faculty will be required to enter a date of last academic activity for all students receiving an incomplete, no-grade, or failing grade in a course.
VIII. Old Business
President Skinner reported that the proposed revisions of Sections 9.10 through 9.12, 4.13, 4.14 of the University’s Policies and Procedures manual, as well as, the faculty senate proposal for a faculty ombudsman remain in the General Council’s office awaiting examination and approval.
IX. New Business
President Skinner presented the first reading of the proposed changes to the General Education Catalog copy. The list of general education courses remains unchanged. The revisions are intended to document the University’s move to an assessment-based general education program. Assessment will be a program assessment rather than a course-by-course assessment. The second reading will be at the next meeting of the Faculty Senate.
X. As May Arise
SGA representatives Casey Donnell and Cassie Standley announced that the SGA was working to fill student vacancies on the faculty committees. They urged Faculty Senate representation at SGA meetings and faculty involvement in the end-of-year SGA banquet. They also updated the Senate on the upcoming SGA elections; April 9 campaigning begins and voting takes place during April 23-25. The student surveys should begin in the next few weeks.
The meeting of the Faculty Senate was adjourned at 4:54pm.
Submitted by Walter Horn
Secretary of the Faculty Senate