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Oct 12, 2005 Minutes

Approved Faculty Senate Minutes 10/12/05

Members present:

Chair Stone, Senators Brennan, Conroy, Hazlewood,  Hindson, Homeyer, James, McCall, McKinney,  Montondon, Rao, Shah, Sorensen, Warms, Winek

Guests: Clayton Medford, University Star Reporter,

Meeting called to order at 4:00.


Student Retention Plans:  The Senate met with Vice President for Student Affairs, JoAnne Smith and Jennifer Beck to discuss student retention plans.  VPSA Smith first responded to a couple of questions regarding summer camp housing and future parking fees.

  1. Summer Camp Housing: A committee co-chaired by AVPAA Pat Cassidy and Asst VP/Dean of Students John Garrison have considered the issue of fees for housing for summer camps and now have a report that is ready to go to the Provost.  The details regarding how to work with issues of income and space should be available within the next couple of weeks.
  2. Parking Rates:  The Senate is concerned with rumors that parking permit costs will escalate to more $400 per permit.  VPSA Smith indicated that parking is also an auxiliary enterprise and, as such, must generate enough revenue to meet expenses.  Could parking rates go to more than $400 as consultants had suggested last year?  She doubts that that will happen.  It may be the case that there are more reserved spaces at a higher rate.  Already, some administrators pay $168 for reserved parking.   There also may be different rates for parking in different locations.  However,   Parking Services is not in the business of making a profit. Rates will kept as inexpensive as possible.  Work should begin on the extension of the Pleasant Street Parking Garage next summer with completion within about twelve months.  When asked if there might be special consideration for some staff members, many who barely make a minimum wage,  VPSA Smith indicated that she hoped that could be done and mentioned that the University already has a process where individuals do not have to make the entire purchase, but can make payments through payroll deduction.
  3. Student Retention:  Dr. Smith indicated that they have tried some pilot project and done lots of consultation regarding student retention.  The factors that affect student retention include both institution variables and student variables.  Lack of motivation and low study skills rank high as reasons for students to withdraw.  The retention target for 1st time freshmen students is currently 80%.  A packet was circulated that included a review of the literature on retention and retention data for the past several years.  Ms Beck presented some of the current plans toward student retention.  There will be a retention and analysis group that will study retention data.  Attempts are being made to get more accurate data regarding why a student elects to withdraw.  The PAWS Alert System has been implemented to help look at the total student to try to help students who might be in need before a crisis develops.  There will be an e-mail to all faculty alerting them to the program.  The Welcome Bobcats  is a program where students and faculty contact students directly within the first 3 weeks of the semester to welcome them to Texas State.  The intention is for callers to inquire about academic, social and personal issues, and then act as a facilitator to help students find necessary campus resources.  The Six Weeks Program is designed to guide students into developing positive habits that will support their academic success and ease their transition to college.  Also, a number of departments have conducted departmental receptions for new and transfer students.  All in all, major efforts are being made to assist students to find campus resources  and to make referrals to the appropriate  entities for those students who may have special needs.




Piper and Swinney Award Committee:

Dr. Jim Bell, Marketing, and Chair of the Piper and Swinney Award Committee reported that the applicant pool for this year�s nominees was an awesome group.  The committee recommended  Dr. Chrisopher Frost, Psychology, for the Piper Professor Award nomination and for Swinney Teaching Award nominations, Dr Frost, Dr. Laurie Hayes Fluker, Mass Comm, and Dr. Kenneth Margerison, History.   The Senate suspended its rules in order to vote on the recommendation without waiting until the next senate meeting and the recommendations were approved and forwarded to the Provost.


Developmental Leave Application Process:

The Senate briefly discussed PPS 8.02, Faculty Development Leaves,  with regard to the statement that members of the Senate are ineligible to apply.  Pros and cons of the issue were discussed and the matter was eventually tabled.


Faculty Handbook:

Final details were discussed regarding the new edition of the Faculty Handbook.  Suggested changes were made and the final version will be considered for approval at the next senate meeting.



  1. Research Faculty Title: The deans in CAD discussed the Senate�s suggestions to the draft policy statement on research faculty appointments.  The Senate had recommended that no title of professor or faculty be given to anyone who doesn�t have to jump through all of the same hoops required for a regular faculty appointment.  Specifically, the Senate suggested �Research Faculty� be �Research Associates� and the word �Professor� be replaced with the word �Associate�.  The deans like the draft statement as written.  The issue will probably lead to a confrontation if the language and requirements for the positions do not change.
  2. Nepotism:  It would appear that the recent appointments in the McCoy College may be in conflict with the Regents� Rules policy on nepotism.  Vice Pres for Finance Nance and Dir of Human Res McBride are working on a possible change in Regents� Rules to correct the situation.
  3. Texas A&M Kingsville Senate Dissolved:  President Rumaldo Juarez at Texas A&M Kingsville has suspended the 34 member Faculty Senate at that institution.  The Senate discussed the issue and decided a motion would be considered at the next senate meeting regarding the action.
  4. Round Rock Incentives:  It was announced that the Provost instructed the deans to be judicious with regard to the administration of faculty incentives for teaching at the Round Rock campus.
  5. Texas State Acronyms:  The Provost has indicated that use of acronyms for Texas State University be carefully considered before being used in university documents.



New Business:

  1. Evaluative Comments:  It was, again, suggested that the evaluative comments for deans/chairs evaluation be password protected on the Senate�s web page.  Tentative discussion indicated that the page could be password protected, but there should be careful consideration with regard to who has access to the information. It will be considered at a later meeting.
  2. Development Leaves:  Development leave applications are coming.  Get ready.
  3. SAP and Payroll Problems:  It was pointed out that there are still issues regarding SAP errors in payroll.  Specifically mentioned were faculty members who are paid from more than one account.  Some faculty in the College of Science have been given incorrect payroll checks.  All faculty are encouraged to check their pay checks to make sure they are correct. Anyone who is having trouble should contact AVPAA Gene Bourgeois (245-2257).



Minutes for 10/5/05 were approved.