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Feb 6, 2002 Minutes



Approved Senate Minutes

February 6, 2002

Senators present:  Boone, Stutzman, Margerison, McKinney, Hindson, Stimmel, Blanda, Hays, Stone, Peeler, Sawey, Renick, Blevens, Gillis (Ttttttttthatís all, folks!)

Guests: Tom Royal (Financial Aid),  David Doerr (Star)

Meeting was called to order at 4:02 pm by chair Renick.

A motion was made by Sawey and seconded by Hindson to allow the Senate meetings to be recorded by the University Star representative.  Hays commented that the original policy not to allow the sessions to be taped was based on the possibility that taping might cause Senators not to speak their minds.  Senators chuckled at the very thought and then voted unanimously to accept the motion.

Chair Renick then introduced the following resolution:
           Be it resolved that the Faculty Senate thanks Joan Hays for the competent, diligent, and humorous way she takes our minutes as Secretary of the Senate.
           This resolution was endorsed unanimously.  The secretary, of course, abstained from voting but was suitably gratified.

Chair Renick updated the Senate on the search for  a new University president.  He informed the Senate that the executive search company (head hunters) selected to aid  the presidential search committee was Korn-Ferry.  The amount budgeted for services rendered was limited to $100,000.00.  It was mentioned by one savvy senator that it was becoming increasingly common to hire ìhead huntersí for major searches.

Tom Royal, from the Financial Aid Office, appeared in response to questions about the work study program.  He explained that financial aid, specifically work study, was based on financial need.  Students MUST apply every year.  Part of the credentialing is the previous years income tax statement which is part of the proof of financial need.  Hence, the annual application requirement.  The application process must start in January for the fall semester.  Freshmen and Sophomores are generally given work study preference.  The rationale for this is that some students will not remain in college beyond the first two years and work study aid will keep them from incurring an excessive debt burden.  This seemed, to the assembled Senators, to be a humane policy.  Students, in the annual reapplication process, must meet the April deadline.  The demand for work study money exceeds the money available for work study position.  The Financial Aid office uses statistical information from past years to determine the number of applicants likely to remain in the program so that funds available are used efficiently. Approximately 1100 -1200 students apply for about 800 available slots.  There is no limit to the number of years a student can be on work study.  It is based entirely on financial need.   Work study slots are obtained through the VP, Dean chain of command.  The VPAA has the majority of these positions to place.
One Senator inquired about who might be liable for injury if a work study student was being utilized in a job that included some risk.   Are they insured by the  university as University employees? One Senator mentioned a low cost, limited insurance as a possible solution.  It is a question that Mr. Royal will follow up on.  (The Secretary apologizes to the academic community for ending a sentence with a preposition.  The alternative sounded unduly pompous!)

Senator Hays, concerned about increasingly stringent telephone restrictions, presented a resolution concerning long distance calls by faculty residing outside the local district.  After some discussion and tweaking of the original resolution Senator Sawey moved and Hays seconded ìthat the University establish a policy that allows faculty a small monthly allowance of $2.00, drawn from non-state funds, so that they may make routine long distance calls to home, day care, medical personnel, etc., without resorting to a ìcalling cardî  This motion was passed unanimously.  Tilting at windmills again, Don Quixote?  Charge! (Was that a pun?)

Fortified by a brief break the Senate then turned its attention to the sobering issue of salary compression.  Senator Stutzman has been researching resources in order to explore salary compression issues on this campus.  He has found a number of people having pertinent expertise who are willing to work on this issue.  He has also begun exploring evaluation models used on other campuses (campi?).  Senator Stone moved and Hays seconded a motion to support this investigation by requesting such information as the committee might need through the open records act.  The motion was passed unanimously.  Senators Stutzman and Peeler will head this committee.

The Senate continued it discussion of the relationship of the cost of athletics to the overall academic performance of the university.  Murray Sperberís book, Beer and Circus, questions the conventional wisdom about how much a university is likely to gain from a ìwinningî sports team.  It questions whether students recruited based on sports glamour actually improve the academic atmosphere.  Recent newspaper ads and tailgate party quotes seem to indicate that it encourages a party image.  The Senate is concerned that this drain on resources and degeneration of the student body might lead to a weakening of academic standards at the institution.  One Senator, in a momentary fit of despondency, wondered if anything could be done to turn things around.  One Senator wondered if athletic scholarships promised as part of the march toward Division IA would no longer be needed.  This question will be posed to the Student Service Fee Committee at the first opportunity.

The Senate then turned its attention to deciding the PAAG agenda for Feb. 13, 2002. (When Friday the 13th falls on a Wednesday it means 3 days bad luck according to Churchy La Femme.)
The following items were suggested for the PAAG meeting:
 1.  The rumor that faculty might receive compensation for sick leave upon retirement. (Currently your heirs will receive some compensation if you die while still employed. Pleasant thought.)
 2.  Is there a formal policy about the wellness initiative that would govern the cost of such programs and the source of financial support?
 3.  While  being appropriately obsequious for support from the University reserves to support summer school the Senate would like to know the state of the reserves.  Are the drains placed upon it for Ph.D. programs being adequately replenished?  Is there any truth to the rumor that funds that might go to the reserves are being shifted directly into Ph.D. program accounts so that there is no requirement to repay reserves?  Enron has made us all somewhat more sophisticated in the questions we ask.
 4.  When might we see the cost accounting model for evaluating the costs of the Ph.D. programs that was being developed by Thyberg and McLean?
 5.  What is happening with the reallocation process?

A brief discussion of the costs of the wellness/recreation program in Jowers Center as outlined by Dr. Pankey in a recent memo ensued.  Because this memo included the costs for evening hours as well as the noon program Senator Hindson moved and Stutzman seconded that the Senate ask for a cost estimate of the noon hour programs only or for those hours that are dedicated specifically to the faculty/staff wellness program.  This motion passed unanimously.

The Senate was encouraged to attend the Lavalli  grievance hearing to be held on Friday, Feb. 8, 2002 at 8:30 am.

The Senate then entered a closed session to determine the next steps to be taken in the processing and dissemination of the results of the evaluation of the President and the VPAA.  The written comments should be compiled by next week.

Minutes were approved with one addition and a typographical correction.

Minutes doggedly but happily submitted by Joan Hays