SEPTEMBER 25, 2001

The first Regular Meeting of the Faculty Senate for the academic year 2001-2002 was held in room 4.03.08, John Peace Library Building, on September 25, 2001 at 3:30 p.m. with Dr. Ronald Ayers, Chair, presiding.

I. Call to order and taking of attendance

Dr. Ronald Ayers welcomed everyone to the first regular meeting of the Faculty Senate. He introduced himself and stated that he is looking forward to a productive year at the Senate.

Present: Ronald Ayers, Fred Bonner, Steven Boyd, John Bretting, Felecia Briscoe, Stephen Brown, Jan Clark, Ruben Cordova, Dorothy Flannagan, James Groff, Paul Jacobs, Michael Kelly, Melvin Laracey, Rafael Lopez-Mobilia, James McDonald, George Negrete, Frank Pino, Thomas Ricento, A. C. Rogers, Kent Rush, Ron Rutherford, Kent Rush, Michael Ryan, Deborah Schwartz-Kates, C.S. Shih, Woodie Spivey, Minghe Sun, Kenton Wilkinson, Weining Zhang

Absent: Sos Agaian, Deborah Armstrong, Guy Bailey (excused), Mansour El-Kikhia (excused), Ni He (excused), Victor Heller (excused), Raquel Marquez, Walter Richardson, Jr., Todd Ryska

Total members present: 29 Total members absent: 9

II. Minutes of the March 20, 2001 Special Meeting, April 10, 2001 Regular Meeting and May 4, 2001 Special Meeting were approved.

III. Reports

A. Provost - Dr. Guy Bailey

Dr. David Johnson, Vice Provost, attended the meeting, on behalf of the Provost, to respond to any questions the Senators might have. Dr. Ayers read two questions he had received from Dr. Walter Richardson:

1) "When will faculty receive their contracts for the current academic year?" Dr. Johnson responded that the contracts were being prepared and would be sent out very soon.

2) "In a Paisano article, the word "program" was used in reference to students in German and French courses at UTSA. If the administration has decided to stop offering majors in German and French, are they not abandoning an academic program? If so, has the administration followed Regents' Rules in terms of setting up faculty committees following the other safeguards that apply when an academic program is abandoned?" Dr. Johnson responded that the article in the Paisano was inaccurate in that the administration has not made any decision regarding foreign languages. Discussion is currently being held with the Dean of the College of Liberal and Fine Arts and the Chair of the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures. Faculty have made some proposals about the programs but no recommendations have been forwarded from the Dean to the Office of the Provost. Currently there are at least three faculty in the department who do not meet their workload requirements, which is a problem. The administration is trying to find a way to bring these faculty into compliance with the workload policy.

Dr. George Negrete asked for an explanation of the workload policy document received by faculty indicating that nine hours would be the full-time workload for a tenured faculty, which would have an impact on grant support relative to buying out courses. Dr. Johnson responded that moving from 12 to nine workload credits per semester did mean that the cost of the course went up. Dr. Negrete stated that the new workload policy seems to require teaching the same hours but costs granting agencies more money to fund grants. As a result, the institution will be able to collect more funds, which will, perhaps, reflect on reduced funds available to faculty as researchers. Dr. Johnson said that the purpose of the new workload policy was not to increase the amount of money the institution receives from grants. The memorandum notifying faculty of the new policy was distributed to provide time for transitioning into the new calculations. The new calculations of the cost of the course release will be imposed this year only if the grant can afford it. If the grant cannot afford it, the institution will continue with the original term of the grant until it expires. So however long the grant runs, the old calculations of 25% versus 33% will be used. Dr. Negrete asked for information on the rationale for the new workload policy and the process for implementing the policy. Dr. Johnson explained that the new workload policy was adopted primarily to bring the university into conformity with the Research I Institution Workload policy. He noted that the implementation of new doctoral programs would have a dramatic impact on the kind of teaching people will do and the number of courses they will be teaching. The new policy is designed to provide that type of flexibility for the future.

B. Senate Chair - Dr. Ronald Ayers

Dr. Ayers introduced himself and noted that he has served on the University Assembly and Faculty Senate on and off for most of his 20 years at UTSA. He said that he had met with approximately one-third of the Senators prior to the meeting to discuss the work of the Senate and provide material related to that work. He informed the Senators who had not received their information that their packets were available to be picked up after the meeting. Dr. Ayers called attention to a letter from Dr. Patricia Harris, former chair of the Senate, containing details of last year's accomplishments and suggestions regarding various directions the Senate may wish to move in this year. Dr. Ayers asked that all Senators communicate with him about setting this year's agenda for the Senate. Also Senators should communicate with each other and with their constituents.

Dr. Ayers reported that because of the restructuring of the University, the Senate must agree upon and approve a new set of bylaws. To accomplish this, he called a special meeting of the Faculty Senate for Friday, October 26, 2001, 2:00 - 5:00 p.m., Regents' Room. Between the special meeting on October 26th and the regular meeting in November, the Senate should have a new set of bylaws in place by the conclusion of the November meeting.

Dr. Ayers informed the Senate that the Office of Distance Learning and Academic Technology created a new interactive Senate website that will function as an on-line bulletin board for discussion purposes. Senators will be able to post messages and respond to messages posted by other Senators. Dr. Ayers encouraged Senators to utilize the bulletin board in order to conserve scarce meeting times and thus avoid long meetings and special meetings. He reported that one Senator had requested the activation of the private mail feature. He explained that this feature would allow private mail about Senate business to be sent to other Senators without all Senators being able to view the messages. Dr. Ayers asked that anyone who objected to the use of this feature contact him within the next few days.

Dr. Ayers introduced Sandy Pottorff who provided administrative support to the Faculty Senate, as well as the University Assembly, Staff Council, and UTSA Standing Committees. He said if anyone objected to providing Ms. Pottorff access to the bulletin board they should contact him within the next few days.

Dr. John Bretting asked for the Senate's collective sentiment about the private feature of the bulletin board. He said that one of the responsibilities Senators have is to come together and deliberate. Suggesting that the private mail feature will be activated unless there are any objections goes against the nature of collective deliberation.

Dr. Michael Ryan responded that the suggestion had been made to reduce the amount of message traffic by allowing committee members to communicate on an issue without all Senators receiving the posting. A suggestion was made that the committee postings be done via regular e-mail instead of on the bulletin board.

C. Committees

1. Nominating and Elections Committee - Dr. Ron Alexander

Dr. Alexander distributed packets containing ballots for each of the Faculty Senate Committee. He explained that the Nominating and Elections Committee had developed the ballots from nominations received from Faculty Senators for the Executive Committee and from the General Faculty for the Standing Committees. Since no nominations had been received for the position of Chair Elect, Dr. Alexander called from nominations from the floor. He noted that the Chair Elect must be a newly-elected Senator since they serve one year as Chair Elect and one year as Chair. Dr. Rocky Shih nominated Dr. Frank Pino. Dr. Ron Ayers nominated Dr. Michael Ryan; Dr. Ryan declined the nomination. Dr. Ayers withdrew the nomination and nominated Dr. James Groff.

Dr. Pino stated that the curtailment of nominations could be due to the change in the faculty workload policy that eliminated the course release previously provided to the Chair of the Faculty Senate. Originally the release was established to provide sufficient time for someone to serve in this capacity and be able to dedicate the kind of time and effort that was needed. Dr. Pino declined the nomination.

Dr. Groff accepted the nomination and was placed on the ballot for the position of Chair Elect.

Dr. James McDonald asked to be removed from the ballot for the position of Chair of the Graduate Council.

Mr. Kent Rush and Dr. A.C. Rogers were nominated for the University Curriculum Committee.


Officers and Executive Committee:

Ron Ayers, CoB Chair

*James Groff, CoB Chair-Elect

*Fred Bonner College of Education and Human Development

John Bretting, PAD College of Public Policy

*Jan Clark College of Business

George Negrete College of Sciences

G.V.S. Raju College of Engineering

*Mike Ryan College of Liberal and Fine Arts

*Tom Ricento, CoEHD Secretary

*Rocky Shih Chair, Graduate Council

*Woodie Spivey, CoB Parliamentarian

Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee

*Ron Alexander, CoEHD

*John Bretting, CoPP

Jan Clark, CoB

Robert Hiromoto, CoS

Amy Jasperson, CoLFA

*Tom Ricento, CoEHD

*Rocky Shih, CoE

Academic Policy and Requirements Committee

*Steven Boyd, CoLFA

*Vic Heller, CoB

*Kenneth Masden, CoLFA

Sandy Norman, CoS

*Marita Nummikoski, CoLFA

Deborah Schwartz-Kates, CoLFA

*Weining Zhang, CoS

Nominating and Elections Committee

Ron Alexander, CoEHD

John Bretting, CoPP

*Stephen Brown, CoS

G.V.S. Raju, CoE

*Deborah Schwartz-Kates, CoLFA

*Minghe Sun, CoB

*Thomas Thomson, CoB

Teaching Effectiveness and Development Committee:

Deborah Armstrong, CoS

*Ellen Clark, CoEHD

*Raquel Marquez, CoLFA

James McDonald, CoLFA

*A.C. Rogers, CoE

Betty Travis, CoS

*Kenton Wilkinson, CoLFA

University Curriculum Committee

*Felicia Briscoe, CoEHD

*Ruben Cordova, CoLFA

*Ann Eisenberg, CoLFA

*Kolleen Guy, CoLFA

*Phil He, CoPP

*Paul Jacobs, CoEHD

*Rafel Lopez-Mobilia, CoS

Louis Mendoza

*A.C. Rogers, CoE

*Kent Rush, CoLFA

*Todd Ryska, CoEHD

*Elected at the September 25, 2001 meeting of the Faculty Senate

IV. Consent Calendar - Graduate Council

1. Recommend approval of Master of Science degree in Statistics - APPROVED

IV. Unfinished Business


V. New Business

1. Information on a proposal for a Honors College - Dr. Richard Diem

Dr. Diem reported that the Honors Program had been assigned to the Office of K-16 Initiatives approximately one and one-half years ago. Dr. Ann Eisenberg continues to direct the program. The proposal for a Honors College was developed with the idea of assisting the University to move toward becoming a Research I institution. The idea has been presented to the UTSA Budget Council, the Deans' Council, and to each of the Deans and Associate Deans individually. Dr. Diem said that since the proposal does not require a new degree or any new programs, it does not have to be submitted to UT System or the Coordinating Board. The establishment of a Honors College is important to the students since they would graduate with a degree in their individual colleges as well as in the Honors College. The proposed curriculum for the Honors College is essentially the same as the current Honors Program. Dr. Diem stated that he was presenting the proposal to the Senate and would subsequently request that the proposal be forwarded to the appropriate Senate committee for review and recommendation.

Dr. Groff asked about the commingling of the Honors College with the Office of K-16 Initiatives since honors colleges at other institutions are generally stand-alone.

Dr. Diem responded that the proposed structure was due to budgetary reasons and the intent is for the college to eventually become stand-alone. He reiterated that the document being presented was a proposal only and, therefore, recommendations for modifications would be considered.

Dr. Rutherford asked how many classes would have to be added, how many students would be in each class, and how many new faculty would be needed. Dr. Diem responded that the Honor College would operate in the same manner as the current Honors Programs. It will be dependent upon what the departments want to do in terms of developing programs within departments. If a department wants to develop honors programs, it would have to add classes. It is expected that initially funds to reimburse the departments for offering certain Honors classes would be made available. Although these funds would not cover the full cost of replacement salaries at this time, the reimbursement would be a start. Eventually it is anticipated to have the program geared up to about 600 students in the Honors College itself throughout the University.

Dr. McDonald asked for an elaboration of the work being done on overseas opportunities for the students. Dr. Diem replied that that desire is to provide all of the students within the Honors College an opportunity to study overseas. Currently they are looking at two different directions to accomplish this. The first direction would be to offer mini-mester courses, such as three-week courses in January at overseas campuses. The second direction would be the more traditional formats of offering courses in the summer and summer abroad programs as well. It is hoped that the College will be able to offer scholarships for this type of overseas study so these opportunities are available for everyone.

Dr. Diem stated that the goal is to begin recruiting students in Spring 2002 for the Honors College.

2. Dr. Frank Pino made a motion that the Faculty Senate make a recommendation to the Provost that he rescind the policy statement that indicated that release time would no longer be granted for the offices of Chair of the Faculty Senate, Chair of the Graduate Council, and Secretary of the General Faculty/University Assembly. Dr. Rutherford made a friendly amendment to make this retroactive to include those currently holding these positions. Dr. Pino accepted the friendly amendment. Motion passed.

VI. Meeting adjourned.

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Last updated Sept. 1, 2005