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Faculty Senate
Faculty Senate

2007-2008 Faculty Senate


Wednesday, June 6, 2007, 2 p.m., ASH 196

Present: Anderson, Boyer, Hewins-Maroney, Miller, Reilly, Sollars, Tarry

Excused: Barnes, (Gascoigne), Shaw

Absent: Noble

I. The meeting was called to order at 2:05 p.m. by President Tarry.

II. The May 2, 2007, minutes were approved.

III. Officers' Reports
A. President's Report: Senator Tarry reported:

    1. The Executive Committee and Administration meeting was held on May 16, 2007. Chancellor Christensen announced that a number of searches would begin over the summer: Associate Vice Chancellor for Research (headed by Deb Smith-Howell), Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs (headed by Sheri Rogers), Vice Chancellor for Business and Finance (headed by Julie Totten), Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and Dean of the College of Education. The Faculty Senate will recommend faculty representatives to each of these committees. Tim Kaldahl has been named Director of University Relations and David Miller will be UNO's new Athletic Director. Chancellor Christensen also announced his intention to put together a task force to explore the concept of a "12-month operation" for UNO to make more efficient use of the campus and its facilities throughout the year. He is beginning to explore this issue and wants faculty input. A "trimester" approach is one of the models gaining some attention.

    2. The Board of Regents meeting was held on May18, 2007. The only agenda item was to confirm Chancellor Christensen's appointment, which received unanimous support. The balance of the Regent's campus visit consisted of a site visit to the UNO Library, Aksarben Village development, the former Chili Greens property, Western Hills Magnet Center, the HPER and Student Health facilities, and the Math/Science Learning Center. The Regents were noticeably impressed with the variety and quality of activities and projects underway at UNO.

    3. Chancellor's Council was held May 24, 2007. Chancellor Christensen discussed the Building Bright Futures program and expressed his hope that UNO will assume a significant role in supporting this project, which focuses on enhancing education and wellness for Omaha's children, especially those from economically or academically disadvantaged populations. There are considerable private resources behind the project, so there are great opportunities for the university community to lend its experience and expertise in a number of areas. In particular, six task forces will be forming: 1) Making the Most of Early Childhood; 2) Providing Academic Support and Career Awareness; 3) After School Mentoring and Tutoring for Excellence; 4) Reducing Truancy and Recovering Lost Youth; 5) Addressing Adolescent Behavioral Health; and 6) Financing Higher Education. More information about the Building Bright Futures initiative can be found on or at 751-4145. Chancellor Christensen informed the council of his intention to move forward with a task force to study ways to make the university more effective and efficient in the use of its resources. One option being considered is a "12 month" operational model. The task force will be put together soon and the Faculty Senate will play a role in its composition and activities. Julie Totten reported that with salary increases set and the unlikely prospect of tuition increases, beyond what had already been approved, there will likely be a budget shortfall. Funds for Programs of Excellence and Diversity might be used to bridge the gap. Lee Denker reported on a recent alumni survey conducted jointly by the Alumni Association and the Office of Institutional Research. Despite a relatively low response rate to the electronic survey, the results provide some guidance for the alumni association and the university in developing better relations and more significant connections with UNO alums. There are plans to conduct the survey annually and to refine the instrument.

B. Treasurer's Report: Senator Anderson submitted the May 2007 budget report.

IV. Standing Committee Reports

A. Committee on Faculty Personnel and Welfare: Senator Hewins-Maroney reported the Chancellor has volunteered to pay $500 towards the Campus Climate survey. Dr. Hewins Maroney asked Scott Tarry to formally thank the Chancellor on their behalf.

V. Non-Senate Committee Reports

A. Alumni Association, Board of Directors: Professor Carter reported the meeting was held on May 8, 2007. Deb McLarney welcomed everyone at the Thompson Center. Lee Denker and Linda Mannering provided a Special Report PowerPoint Presentation titled, 2007 UNO Alumni Attitudinal Survey Results. Laura Schulte from the COE was the Statistical Consultant on the project. The themes included: University General Education Outcomes, Impact of Campus Housing, Impact on Personal Development, Impact on Preparation for Career and Successful Living, Alumni Expectations and Attitudes, and Alumni Support for UNO. In the Pilot Study e-mail surveys were sent to 11,300 alumni and 607 participated (graduates from 1941 to 2006) with 64% male/35% female, 70% undergraduates/30% graduates. The survey responses reflected high satisfaction with participants' UNO education but very low involvement and interest in UNO Alumni activities. This survey will be conducted annually with the uses to determine the effectiveness of alumni association and university programs, further breakdown of responses based on graduation year to better serve each segment, relate alumni responses to responses to similar questions on other survey, and create alumni profile. The financial report was provided by the business manager Brian Schram reflecting a total annual revenue of $1,382,000. President Lee Denker stated that he was served with a subpoena by the New York Attorney General as part of an investigation into whether loan companies are breaking consumer laws meant to protect college students and recent graduates. UNL and UNO alumni groups are being asked to detail their relationships with Nelnet, a Lincoln based student loan company. The alumni association is gearing up for the UNO Centennial next year and considering a piece of art for the corner of 76th and Dodge, along with graduate fellowships. The university update was provided by John Christensen who is the first UNO alumni to serve as Chancellor. He identified a few of the areas he plans to pursue as Chancellor:
  • Promote the 12-month Operational Model
  • Enhance relationships with P-K Partnerships
  • Continuous Academic Improvement
  • Maintain high quality faculty, staff and facilities.
  • Look at scheduling, distance education, etc., to broaden our academic horizons.
  • Explore state resources
  • Monitor second phase of the library renovation
    The Golf Committee is promoting the upcoming tournament which has raised $50,000.00 in scholarships in the past each year. They have budgeted for 48 foursomes and currently have recruited 34 foursomes. The Involvement Committee has focused on student scholarships and young alumni programming in an effort to entice students to appreciate alumni association upon graduation. Upcoming events include the following: May 11 Golden Circle - Patty Adams, Director, PWSA 14 Governmental Forum: Omaha City Council 16 Young Alumni Council Dinner June 8 Golden Circle - Don Klosterman, Women's Soccer Coach 16 Alumni Day in Kansas City - Arrowhead Stadium July 5 Alumni Night at Shakespeare on the Green Aug. 14 Board of Directors Meeting

VI. Old Business

A. The following resolutions were filled or completed:

    1. Resolution 2877, 6/6/07: Appointment of Chair of the Cabinet

    BE IT RESOLVED, that according to the Constitution of the Faculty Senate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha, Article IV, the senate president appoints the following senator 2007-2008 Chair of the Cabinet:

    John Noble, to replace Senator Skreija.

    2. Completion to Resolution 2867, 5/09/2007: Campus Committees (Rules Committee - Senator Miller)

    i. UCRCA (University Committee on Research & Creative Activity) (completed 6/6/07 with Lipschultz)

    BE IT RESOLVED: that the following names go forward as three year appointments, from 8/1/07 through 7/31/10 on the University Committee on Research (UCR):

    • Shing-Jye Chen, ED, (to replace Mary Friehe)
    • Jayaram Betanabhatla, A&S (Social Science), (to replace Melanie Bloom)
    • Jeremy Lipschultz, CFAM, (to replace Sharon Sobel)
    • John McCarty, At Large Member, (to replace Dwight Haworth)

    3. Correction to Resolution 2876, 5/09/2007: Faculty Senate Representatives to: (Rules Committee - Senator Miller)Graduate Council (Rules Committee - Senator Miller) (Michael O'Hara's term on the Graduate Council expired May 2007. Harmon Maher is a Senator still serving on Graduate Council.)

    BE IT RESOLVED, that the senate president appoints the following member of the Graduate Council to be the liaison between the 2006-2007 Faculty Senate and the Graduate Council for a one-year term from 05/10/06, through 05/09/07:

    Harmon Maher Michael O'Hara, (to replace Paul Williams).

VII. New Business

A. Senator Carolyn Gascoigne asked to resign from the Senate due to over commitment. The Executive Committee accepted Senator Gascoigne's resignation. Dr. Moshe Gershovich will be her replacement.

B. Responsibility for Community Engagement will be discussed at the Faculty Senate August 2007 Retreat.

C. Also planned for the Retreat:

    1. Invite Chancellor Christensen to speak on

    • Build Bright futures
    • Budget
    • Physical Changes on Campus (and where all will park) (contract for Crossroads?)
    • Search Committees

    2. Invite David Miller, recently appointed Athletic Director, and UNO being accepted into the MidAmerica Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) and what that means to UNO.

    3. Invite Deb Smith-Howell, Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs to speak on the Gen Ed Task Force.

D. The July EC&C meeting was rescheduled to July 11, 2007.

VIII. The meeting adjourned at 3:05 p.m.