THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT SAN ANTONIO
DOCUMENTS AND PROCEEDINGS OF THE GENERAL FACULTY
SUMMARY MINUTES OF THE
FACULTY SENATE SPECIAL MEETING
OF NOVEMBER 14, 2002(REVISED)
The second regular Meeting of the Faculty Senate for the academic year 2002-2003 was held in room 3.04.06, on November 14, 2002 at 3:30 p.m. in the Business Building with Dr. James McDonald, Chair, presiding, Dr. John Rundin, Secretary.
Present: Ron Ayers, Guy Bailey, Gerard Barloco, Ron Binks, Fred Bonner, Steven Boyd, Aaron Cassill, Manuel Diaz, Mansour El-Kikhia, Eugene John, Michael Kelly, Melissa Killen, Melvin Laracey, Raquel Marquez, Kenneth Masden, James McDonald, George Negrete, Frank Pino, Chris Reddick, Walter Richardson Jr., John Rundin, Mike Ryan, Ted Skekel, Woodie Spivey, Minghe Sun, Armando Trujillo, Yiuman Tse
Absent: Felecia Briscoe, Stephen Brown, David Bruenger, Jan Clark, Ni (Phil) He, Vic Heller, Paul Jacobs, David Johnson, David Larson, Randy Manteufel, Terri Reynolds, Ricardo Romo, Todd Ryska, Joseph Stafford, Kenton Wilkinson, Mary Lou Zeeman, Weining Zhang (excused)
Total members present: 27 Total members absent: 17
A. Provost - Dr. Guy Bailey
1. The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board conducted a site visit for the proposed doctoral degree in biomedical engineering. Approval for the degree is expected in January 2003. Other doctoral proposals currently being reviewed by the Coordinating Board include Environmental Science & Engineering and Cell & Molecular Biology.
2. Dr. Bailey announced the hiring of Dr. Terry Sullivan as Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs for UT System. Dr. Sullivan was the Vice President for Graduate Studies at UT Austin for several years before going to UT System in October. Additionally, UT System has also hired an assessment expert with significant experience in the field. She is not a fan of the "one model fits all" assessment models or of high stakes testing methods; therefore, the outlook for assessments at System components is favorable.
3. The state budget for the next biennium is not expected to be finalized until August 2003. Special sessions are anticipated for this legislative year, so a lot of initiatives will have to be put on hold until then. UTSA's first priority for this legislative session is pay increases for staff and faculty over the biennium. Next on the priority list is the hiring of 250 new faculty members over the next five years.
4. Dr. Bailey suggested that the committee working on administrator evaluations consider hiring an outside firm for the project. To explain, there were faculty complaints during previous evaluation processes because they felt their identity could be exposed. Thus, an outside firm would help to provide a system of preserving as much confidentiality as possible.
5. Dr. Bailey expressed appreciation for the survey of new faculty and said it was very helpful to the Provost's Office. The survey showed that, in some colleges, new faculty go through a difficult adjustment period. In other colleges, the transition is very smooth. To solve this problem, the Provost's Office will look at the colleges that are more successful at getting their new faculty started and use them as models.
Questions to the Provost:
Dr. Walter Richardson asked for clarification on what sort of response the Coordinating Board might expect regarding low producing degree programs. Dr. Bailey explained that most of the programs listed as under performing are actually tracks within programs and that will be pointed out to the Coordinating Board.
Dr. Frank Pino expressed concern about the basis on which faculty salaries are being allocated, indicating that the "break-even" "pay for yourself" mentality is not a justifiable procedure for determining faculty salaries, not just for foreign languages, but for the entire university. He also noted that UTSA's foreign language enrollments have dropped considerably over the past five years. UTSA had a fifty percent drop while Southwest Texas and the University of North Texas had increases. In response, Dr. Bailey said UTSA needs to come up with some creative ideas for building enrollments in foreign language courses. He added that he is interested in preserving the foreign language program and would be glad to share some ideas on how to address this issue if the department requested his input.
B. Senate Chair - Dr. James McDonald
Bylaws: The General Faculty overwhelmingly approved the new bylaws for both the Senate and the Assembly. President Romo will allow operation under these new bylaws while the college waits for system approval.
Senate meetings have been shifted to the second Thursday of every month. Senate members are no longer automatically members of the Assembly and are therefore not automatically obligated to attend Assembly meetings. As Senate Chair, Dr. McDonald will shuttle over to the Assembly as an ex-officio member and the Assembly's Secretary of the General Faculty will shuttle to the Senate and participate as an ex-officio member with a vote. Thus, the two bodies will be in contact, but the Senate is now autonomous and its actions - be they policy recommendations or academic program approvals - will move up directly to the President and Provost.
To facilitate the transition to the new bylaws, the new pool of ex-officio members were contacted and invited to the Senate meetings. Several of the members were present at this meeting.
The Elections Committee will meet to put out a call to colleges to elect a non-tenure track faculty representative (Senior Lecturers and Lecturer III with requisite University service). Hopefully, the new representative will be on board for the December meeting. Also, at the December meeting, a Vice Chair will have to be elected. Nominations should be forwarded to Sandy Pottorff.
The December meeting will close out the semester. There will be no January meeting (this was true, as well, of the old Senate) since the semester starts mid-month. Thus, our first spring meeting will be in February.
Committees: All standing committees are up and running this year. Each has received its charge and has elected a Chair. Academic Freedom and Tenure, chaired by Fred Bonner, will be looking at 3rd Year Review and PPE; Academic Policy and Requirements, chaired by Steven Boyd, will be looking into an administrator evaluation instrument and the grievance procedure; the Curriculum Committee, chaired by Ann Eisenberg, will be screening programs throughout the year and also looking at undergraduate catalog copy in the Spring; Teaching Effectiveness, chaired by Felicia Briscoe, will be reviewing the IDEA teaching evaluation system; and the Nominations and Elections Committee, chaired by Deborah Schwartz-Kates, will be at work filling in the newly mandated positions in the Senate.
Additionally, an Ad Hoc Committee on New Faculty Issues has been convened. It will be co-chaired by Senator John Rundin and History Professor Anne Hardgrove. Their charge will be to recommend how to better integrate new hires into the University - ID's, parking tags, keys, library access, etc. Additionally, they will look into different mentoring models and make some recommendations in that regard.
Finally, a series of post-baccalaureate programs from the College of Education and Human Development have been sent out to the Curriculum Committee. Their evaluation is expected in December. The Academic Policy and Requirements Committee has also received a proposed policy from the Associate Deans to cap student credit hours, which should help discourage opportunistic shopping around for classes by students. This topic will most likely be discussed at the December meeting.
1. Ad Hoc Committee on Laboratory Space usage - Dr. George Negrete
The intent of this policy is to establish a framework for proper utilization and maintenance of research laboratories through shared responsibility of faculty governance. The policy recommends each Department Chair and the Departmental Faculty Advisory Committee will jointly analyze research laboratory use within the Department each year and issue a preliminary report to their faculty by March 1. After faculty review and approval, a final report will be provided as necessary to the Dean of the governing College by May 1. Items to be evaluated include grants and other awards associated with laboratory space, such as their number of research reports, conference presentations, and publications. The dean in consultation with the chair will develop a method to assess the usage of the laboratory. If it is found lacking, suggestions will be made to improve its usage. This process is directed more towards sciences and engineering than any other area. Dr. Mansour El-Kikhia made a motion to receive the report of the committee and forward the proposal to the Academic Policy and Requirements Committee for further review. Motion approved.
1. Recommend approval of Ph.D. degree in Counselor Education and Supervision - APPROVED
1. Office of International Programs - Chris Musick, Director
Mr. Musick stated his agreement with the previous discussion regarding concern in the decline in modern languages. This is due, partly, to the lack of opportunities for students to study abroad. Mr. Musick reported that the international programs office plans to develop some very dynamic programs that would benefit modern languages and also be opportunities all students could take advantage of. For example, there are movements in the College of Business to create several foreign exchanges. The Office of International Programs is committed to helping create these new exchanges and to developing linkages overseas. It hopes to build on the experience and knowledge of the faculty in creating these relationships and getting rid of many of the misconceptions about it. For example, many students feel that studying abroad is not affordable or that knowledge of a foreign language is necessary. However, there are scholarships available to students who want to study abroad and there are opportunities to study in English-speaking countries. Further, there is discussion of developing a UT branch campus in Mexico staffed by faculty from UT components and local faculty hired on an adjunct basis. To help support and maintain the financial side of that program, the faculty members would rotate from department to department and the Senate would be involved in the faculty selection.
Mr. Musick reported that the Office of International Programs is currently handling "H" visas in-house. Eventually the office will also work with the hiring of foreign faculty and bringing in short-term faculty members from abroad.
2. Office of Institutional Compliance - Donna Holmes, Director
The Office of Institutional Compliance was started in 1998 in response to several incidents. For example, students at UT Austin were making drugs in the labs. Additionally, there were significant frauds in the dean's office in UT Austin. The final straw came when the Health Science Center in San Antonio had Medicare billing problems with the physicians practice plan. There was a whistle blower suit and the Health Science Center was fined approximately $26 million. As a result, the Board of Regents wanted some assurance that these things would not happen again. Thus, an Institutional Compliance program was developed. With the Worldcom and Enron scandals, the UT System's Institutional Compliance program has become an example that other universities want to follow.
Holmes covered three main points. The first point was that every employee is required to take compliance training as a federal mandate. Thus, a web-based program was selected for this process. The second point was that a hot line will be established for employees to report any wrongdoings confidentially, anonymously, and without fear of retaliation. The third point was that there is a new employee guide with information in it, such as resources, Web sites, phone numbers, etc.
VII. Meeting adjourned
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Last updated Aug. 29, 2005