2005-2006 Faculty Senate
Excused: Watson, Dasgupta, Nordman
Absent: Arbelaez, Bullock, Roland, Roslanowski, Scherer
I. The meeting was called to order at 2:15 p.m.
II. The minutes of the September 14, 2005, meeting were approved as submitted.
III. Officers' Reports
A. President's Report: Senator Glaser reported:
- The Enrollment Management Systems Committee met September 13, 2005. Robinson announced the new enrollment statistics. There are two new recruiting initiatives: Oct. 1 Latina family event, multi-cultural recruitment Oct. 21. Radio ads are going on 94.1, 97.7, 104.5.
- Executive Committee and Administration met September 21, 2005. The administration accepted our resolutions from the previous faculty senate meeting without comment. We discussed resolutions #2608 and #2623 which recommend that the university schedule commencement ceremonies so they do not conflict with any final exams. This has been an on-going problem. The administration is open to suggestions on how to resolve it. Wade Robinson is also looking into the number of seniors attending Friday afternoon classes. The administration confirmed that we are changing "Dead Week" to "Prep Week" and encourages everyone to refer to "Prep Week" in their syllabi and department announcements. I reported to the administration about the four faculty senate presidents' meeting and our upcoming meeting with President Milliken. I also reported that the Academic and Curricular Affairs Committee is working on the issue of faculty posting grades with students' social security numbers. John Christensen feels there needs to be a clarification of procedures regarding faculty plagiarism. The Graduate College has been notified that their current catalogue (2003-2004) is incorrect and the proper committee to notify is the Faculty Professional Conduct Committee. Convocation is Oct. 12th.
- Chancellor's Council met September 22, 2005. The Chancellor talked about South Campus Development. Robinson reported on UNO's disaster preparedness program. Robinson and Jim Leslie reported on homecoming activities and open house. John Fiene talked about the MIT consultant visit; John Preston was hired to help UNO increase faculty research connected to business and finance, which can then be used for commercialization purposes. There is an extensive capital campaign underway, the goal of which is to reach an endowment of (about) $143 million. Most of this is for new building and improvement to existing buildings. The General Education Think Tank met 9/23/05 and worked on student outcomes and assessment for our general education requirements. Hurricane Katrina: UNO has adopted the University of New Orleans. Students and staff will be coordinating donations to the other U.N.O.all year. There is also a collection for the family of our football player who is from New Orleans.
- Board of Regents met September 16, 2005. The BOR voted to purchase land from the Aksarben Trust in order to expand the UNO campus southward, and to do so without resorting to eminent domain. Jay Noddle presented the vision for the expansion, which (at this point) includes shops, research buildings, street parking, cafes, pedestrian and bike paths, and a movie theater. The Regents had a significant discussion about Milliken's Strategic Framework. Hergert expressed that there is an appropriate emphasis on academic excellence and Wilson, who is chair of the Academic Committee, said he would like us to be at the top of our peer groups for faculty pay. The Regents approved UNO's Center for E-portfolio Based Assessment, as well as the Master's in Arts of Language Teaching. Furthermore, the regents are pushing LB 605 which would fund building improvements on all NU campuses. As part of this effort, they will be hosting state senators for tours of each campus. UNO will be visited on October 31st.
B. Treasurer's Report: Senator Shaw presented the September 2005 Budget report.
IV. Executive Committee Report: Senator Adkins
A. Approval of Executive Committee Action: On behalf of the Executive Committee Senator Adkins moved approval of the following action, taken by committee at its special meeting of September 28, 2005, called to respond in timely fashion to the vice-chancellor. The motion passed.
Resolution 2804, 10/12/05: Appointment to Select Committee
BE IT RESOLVED, At the request of Vice Chancellor Christensen, the Executive Committee appoints two Professors:
Henry D'Souza (Social Work),
Lourdes Gouveia (Sociology),
to join two Unit members selected by the Administration, to convene a Select Committee and render advice "Pursuant to 3.6.1 (Termination for Adequate Cause) of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (p. 14).
B. Executive Committee & Cabinet met October 5, 2005.
- UCR Funding was discussed and President Glaser charged the Professional Development Committee with researching the stated objective or criteria for UCR funding and how and why the funds are distributed.
- Faculty Grievance Committee: On behalf of the Executive Committee and Cabinet Senator Adkins moved the following, which passed:
Resolution 2805, 10/12/05, Formation of Ad-hoc Committee on Faculty Grievance Committee procedures:
Be It Resolved, the Faculty Senate President will form an Ad-hoc Committee of three to five members to support the revision of Faculty Grievance Committee policies and procedures, especially with respect to time lines. The committee will report to the Senate before May 2006.
V Standing Committee Reports
A. Committee on Academic and Curricular Affairs: Senator Anderson Scott Tarry, who represented the Faculty Senate at the General Education Think Tank held September 23, 2005, reported on work at that meeting to reformulate for AQIP the assessment of student learning objectives and outcomes of general education.
Senator Anderson reported from the committee's meeting that:
- Scott Tarry provided a summary of the Gen Ed Think Tank where student learning objectives began to be reformulated in keeping with AQIP guidelines.We are continuing our investigation into the Center for Afghanistan Studies.We are continuing to monitor the dual enrollment program.
- On behalf of the A&CA, Senator Anderson moved the following resolution, which was passed as amended:
Resolution 2806, 10/12/05: Use of Social Security Numbers
Whereas, identity theft is one of the fastest growing crimes in the nation; and
Whereas, students may be particularly vulnerable to this crime; and
Whereas the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) provides specific rights protecting the confidentiality and access of student information at UNO; and
Whereas, the public disclosure of social security numbers is prohibited by FERPA; and
Whereas, the University of Nebraska at Omaha provides a method through which faculty may securely post student grades with Blackboard.
Therefore be it resolved, the Faculty Senate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha strongly discourages the public posting of student social security numbers or any portion thereof in any form by faculty, staff, or administrators; and
Therefore be it resolved, the Faculty Senate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha supports the Chancellor in taking appropriate measures necessary to end this practice, and
Therefore be it further resolved, that we specifically encourage the use of Blackboard to communicate assessment and evaluation information to students.
B. Committee on Educational Resources and Services: Senator Pasco reported the ER&S committee met on 28 September. Senators Watson, Shaw, Williams and Thorp, and Lanyce Keel (ITS Representative), were in attendance. This meeting was devoted to the investigation and resolution of complaints received by the committee in August from faculty Mac users. A small group of faculty Mac users filed complaints regarding primarily two issues: (1) the upgrade of Lotus Notes in August caused an incompatibility with Mac, resulting in a number of faculty and students who, for a short time, could not access their email accounts from off campus, and (2) a general perception by the Mac user community on campus that ITS was not supporting Macs, and had no intention of doing so. Committee members reported that the following actions were taken immediately after receiving the complaints:
- Senator Pasco met with Associate Vice Chancellor John Fiene and discussed the issues raised. Senator Pasco set up a meeting between ITS and Mac users. Fiene and members of the UNO ITS staff will provide a short presentation regarding recent efforts to resolve known issues concerning Macintosh and UNO software/tools. The meeting will allow us to find out what the issues are, where there are clusters of Mac users and what their concerns might be. Other important goals for the meeting are:
- To identify technology and support issues for Macintosh users on the UNO campus
- To identify strategies currently engaged by ITS to resolve technology and support issues for Macintosh users on the UNO campus.
- To establish a systematic communication process for the purpose of 1) resolving current areas of concern, and 2) disseminating information about issues that develop in the future.
- Senator Watson met with a group of ITS staff who were exploring the option of ITS becoming an Apple distributor. Any profits realized would be used to help fund a full time position for an ITS Help Desk Mac specialist, who would provide support to all Mac users on campus. Also, Lanyce Keel, the ER&S committee's ITS representative, informed the committee:
- ITS acknowledges that because of budget constraints, more money does end up being spent on PC-compatible software which is most useful to the campus community as a whole.
- ITS tested the Lotus Notes update on Mac machines prior to the summer upgrade, and had no problems, then Mac changed their browser. This incompatibility problem was identified, addressed, and resolved by ITS as quickly as possible.
- ITS will increase number of people at service level for Mac. They recognize that Macs are a better match for some disciplines/students.
- ITS is exploring becoming a Mac distributor. Any profits realized will be used to fund a full-time Mac person at the Help desk. That position should be filled in the next 6-8 weeks
- Blackboard is also an issue for Mac users, and may become more of a problem. Blackboard is now working hand-in-glove with Microsoft--so incompatibility issues may be expected to increase between Blackboard and Macs.
- ITS is also interested in putting together a Mac users group.
C. Committee on Faculty Personnel and Welfare: Senator Skreija reported the Committee met on September 27, 2005. Present were Stuart Bernstein, Barbara Hewins-Maroney, Elaine Lahue, Graham Mitenko, Andris Skreija (chair), Lauree Tilton-Weaver. Guest: Lourdes Gouveia. Skreija reported that he had met with UNO Ombudsman John J. McKenna who stated that he had had only one exit interview to date. Tilton-Weaver reported that she had conducted a "web" search regarding why faculty in general and especially minority and female faculty leave academic positions. She characterized the results as voluminous however mainly based on opinion and little information based on structured research. The committee decided to continue investigating what is available on the UNO campus regarding motivation faculty have for leaving. It also discussed the feasibility of forming focus groups on campus to ascertain how minority and female faculty feel about their jobs here at UNO.
D. Committee on Goals and Directions: On behalf of the committee Senator Bacon moved the following, which passed:
Resolution 2807, 10/12/05, In-State Tuition for Three Iowa Counties
Whereas the University of Nebraska at Omaha is a metropolitan university of distinction, serving the needs of students from the entire metropolitan population, and
Whereas the Iowa counties of Pottawattamie, Mills and Harrison are economically, socially and culturally part of the greater Omaha metropolitan area, and
Whereas articulation agreements with Iowa Western Community College promise still greater integration of the curricula and degree programs of Iowa Western and UNO,
Therefore Be It Resolved that the Faculty Senate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha strongly encourages the University of Nebraska to offer in-state tuition to residents of the three aforementioned Iowa counties for matriculation at UNO.
E. Committee on Rules: Senator Randall reported that 484 ballots for the Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee were sent out, and 256 voting envelopes were returned. Of those, two ballots were returned in unsigned envelopes, one envelope was empty, one ballot had "abstain" written across it, and 21 were returned after the deadline and were never opened. Thus, 231 ballots were counted.
For the committee, Senator Randall moved to complete the resolution, which passed.
Resolution 2801, (9/14/05) Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee (For UNO Faculty Ballot Vote) (completed 10/12/05):
BE IT RESOLVED, that in accordance with section 6.1 of the Faculty Senate Bylaws the following nominees for the Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee are brought forward by the Rules Committee for senate nomination. The ballot will be presented to the UNO faculty. One tenured faculty member will be elected from the following four nominees to serve a three-year term from October 16, 2005, through October 15, 2008, to replace retiring members, William Corcoran, and Carol Lloyd:
- Carey Ryan (tenured faculty) ELECTED
- John Noble (tenured faculty) ELECTED
- Dwight Haworth (tenured faculty)
- Richard Stacy (tenured faculty).
And one tenured faculty member will be elected from the following two nominees to serve a two-year term, to balance term endings, from October 16, 2005, through October 15, 2007, to replace retiring member Steven Williams:
- Robert Smith (tenured faculty)
- Joan Latchaw (tenured faculty). ELECTED
And one non-tenured faculty member will be elected from the following two nominees to replace Carey Ryan, who has received tenure, from October 16, 2005, through October 15, 2008:
- Juan Casas (non-tenured faculty)
- Peter Szto (non-tenured faculty).ELECTED
VI Non-Senate Committee Reports
A. Academic Freedom Coalition of Nebraska (AFCON): Senator Paterson reported AFCON met Saturday, Oct. 8, 2005, at the Eisley Library in Lincoln. The Treasurer's report shows AFCON to be in solid financial condition. Laurie Lee reported that Banned Book Week generated good panels and presentations, was well-organized, but had relatively small attendance due to a busy non-football week of activities. Bob Haller reported on the upcoming Annual Meeting, to be held in Lincoln on November 5th. The featured panel will address issues of Academic Freedom and the current debates over evolution vs ideological pressures. Prof. Sam Walker of UNO will be awarded this organization's annual Academic Freedom Award. The AFCON Nominating Committee recommended the following slate of officers for the 2007 year: President - Doug Paterson; Secretary - Karen Buckley; Treasurer - Cathi McMurtry. Joanne Chapuran reported that she is researching the issue of censorship and self-censorship of Nebraska high school newspapers. The Hazelwood ruling by the US Supreme Court states that administrators "may" prohibit high school articles prior to publication if they believe it is in the best interest of the school. AFCON and most civil libertarians contend that this is an abridgement of free speech and that young people should be learning AMto contend in the "marketplace of ideas" by the high school years. Dwayne Ball observed that AFCON would do well to pursue this matter since it is not only important but is the issue that led to the founding of AFCON in 1987.
B. Academic Planning Council: Senator Reilly attended the October 1, 2005 meeting and reported the programs scheduled for review in 2005/2006 are Public Administration, Communication and the Honors Program. The review will be done by a team of four-six and will include someone from inside the college, someone from outside the college and at least one person from the Graduate College. The APC is creating a Strategic Planning Committee. They will focus their efforts on trying to minimize redundancy in strategic planning among colleges. The APC is also studying the portfolio approach to strategic planning for possible future use.
C. Alumni Association, Board of Directors: Senator Randall reported the Alumni Association met September 20, 2005. Discussion items included planning for the UNO centennial in 2008 and the association's contributions to that. Chancellor Belck updated the board on planning for South campus.
D. American Association of University Professors (AAUP): Senator Williams reported the AAUP Chapter Meeting for the semester is scheduled for Tuesday, 8 November. The AAUP Fall Dinner will be 11 November.The AAUP is looking at the following section of the contract:
188.8.131.52b. When a Unit Member has been notified, in accordance with the provisions of this Agreement, that his/her appointment will not be renewed, the Unit Member shall have the right to request a reconsideration or file a grievance as provided under Section 4.8 of the Bylaws of the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska as amended; however, the substantive decision of the Administration not to renew the appointment shall constitute the final administrative judgment in the case and shall not give rise to a grievance under the terms of this Agreement, except that, a grievance may be pursued based on the allegation that the procedures outlined herein were not followed and that such failure may have affected the substantive decision of the Administration. [Emphasis added] (The contract is available online at http://www.unomaha.edu/aaup/ )
It is the AAUP Executive Committee's interpretation that if denied reappointment, a faculty member can ask for reconsideration OR file a grievance (through the UNO-AAUP or the Faculty Senate). Further, it is the position of UNO-AAUP that, upon filing a grievance, a faculty member has not yet been denied reappointment because the matter is still under review. Therefore, the decision is not yet finalized.
E. Graduate Council: Senator Paterson reported a meeting will be held October 21.
F. Strategic Planning Steering Committee: Senator Bacon reported the Strategic Planning Steering Committee has been pared down to about 20 members. The Advance will only occur in the Spring.
G. UNO Spirit Committee: Senator Bernstein reported the Spirit Committee met and submitted the following proposal to the Chancellor for the 2005-2006 academic year:
- Sponsor one event per week to encourage participation in campus activities. Three of these events are to be organized events and one event is be a scheduled "Spirit Day."
- Promote "pride" in UNO by promoting the wearing of school colors and encouraging campus participation in service activities.
- Hold an end of year "finale," yet to be determined.
VII The meeting adjourned at 3:10 p.m.