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Faculty Senate
Faculty Senate

2010-2011 Faculty Senate


Wednesday, April 13, 2011, 2 p.m., MBSC Chancellors Room

Present:    Baguyos, Bartle, Barone, Bernstein, Bramlett, Carballall, Erickson, Hayes, Hendricks, Kelly, Kercher, Laquer, Lewis, Lomneth, Maring, Marx, Matache, Melanson, O'Connell, Proulx, Rech, Richter-Egger, Ritzman, Robins, Robinson, Siy, Smith, Srithongrung, Winter

Excused:  Mitchell, Nordman, Waggener

Absent:     Anderson, Bonsell, Decker, Hewins-Maroney, Zand


PRESENTATION:  Scott Snyder, Associate Vice Chancellor for Research & Creative Activity told the Senate that while the 2010 national election changed the research landscape, UNO is still competitive.  All types of research, large and small, are invited.  Grant Writing by contract is being looked into.  Dr. Snyder is very willing to meet with individuals and departments.


I.          The meeting was called to order at 2:32 p.m.

II.        The Minutes of the March 2, 2011, meeting were approved as submitted.

III.      Officers' Reports

A.    President's Report:  Senator Laquer reported

1.      Board of Regents met March 11, 2011.

Morning Session



      Chris Kabourek, Assistant Vice President for Business and Finance and Director of Budget presented a budget update.   If legislative action continues as the governor recommended, this will be the fifth year of a flat budget.  When compared to the Higher Edication Price Index, there has been a 15% decrease in purchasing power since 2000.  The $25 M investment in the Innovation Campus in Lincoln is still likely to be funded.  The regents noted the importance of planning to internally fund the 1% building depreciation fund which has been recommended for suspension for the next two years.  There has been no major changes in the State-aided FTE employee categories in the last 10 years; a slight increase in Managerial (1365 to 1476) has been matched by a larger decrease in Office and Service (2144 to 1887).  Faculty have increased slightly from 2961 to 2990.  Faculty Salary peer gap data were presented; for UNL they are 4.6% below their peer group, UNMC 7.4% below.  No data were presented for UNO or UNK.  The 2011 data will be presented in April.  Non faculty comparison data for positions also showed them to be below peers.  NU Faculty and Staff salaries are below the increases negotiated by AAUP (UNO), UNKEA (UNK), NAPE (State employees) and Lincoln, Omaha, and Kearney Public Schools since 2010.  Foe NU it is 1.5%+TBD for the next biennium compared to about 7.5%+TBD for the others in collective bargaining units.  UNMC Chancellor Maurer noted that people are beginning to leave because of the salary deficit.  Even with a flat state aided budget, there are still budgetary challenges wiuth a 10% increase expected for health costs.  U-wide shortfalls are expected to be $13.5M in 2012 and $3.9M in 2013.  A 1% salary increase costs about $5.6M each year; 1% tuition increase raises about $2.1M. 

      Rebecca Koller, Asst VP Business and Finance presented the 2010 Fire Safety report.  UNO dorms are fully equipped with sprinklers.  The older facilities on the other campuses and the Greek housing facilities are being renovated to improve safety.


      A Strategic Framework report on Research was presented by Richard Hoffmann, Associate VP for Academic Affairs.  Both UNL and UNMC have exceeded their metric in the reporting period.  UNO is above the target of a doubling in external funding of the $11.2M in FY 2005-6 in 10 years.  UNK however was not meeting their target.  In discussion there was some sentiment within the Regents to reclassify both UNO and UNK,.  Chancellor Christensen indicated that with the change in UNO's Carnegie Classification to DRU, that he would like the see the metric continued with additional guidance from the Regents and benchmark comparisons to other Metropolitan Universities.  The regents indicated that they would do so.

      Additional details on research success were presented by each campus's representative.  UNL is 7th of 63 AAU institutions in percentage research growth from 1999 to 2008.  They also reported on multiple recent research awards for more than $1M each.  At UNMC 70% of their federal research funding comes from NIH.  Declines in NIH funding by congress are a concern.  UNMC leads their peers and their aspiration group in their annual growth in NIH funding since 2005.  Scott Snyder presented the picture at UNO with increasing funding and numbers of awards.  He also highlighted several projects: Partnership in Journalism, Kabul University; the Elkhorn River Research Station; Nebraska Biomechanics Core Facility; Callitrichid Research Center,; and Information Assurance. 

      Matt Hammons, Director of Federal Government Relations presented an Outlook for Federal Funding.  The U.S. House for FY11 has decreased Student Financial Aid  with the maximum Pell Grant available per student to decrease 15% from $5,550 to $4,705, beginning next fall.  The $5,550 is restored in the Presidents proposed FY12 budget.  There are proposed decreases in the House bill in funding for research by NIH, DOE, USDA, and NSF, while the President has proposed increases.  There is an earmark moratorium; in each of the past three years, the University of Nebraska has received $30-$35M in earmarked funds.  The current budget situation in Washington is in flux with the final outcome yet to be determined.  We should expect less funding and more intense competition for federal funds. 

      The Committee for Institutional Cooperation ( made a visit to UNL in concert with welcoming them to the Big 10.  15% of the Ph.D. degrees awarded annually in the US are from this group.  Six staffers visited UNL to help foster connections to other groups in the CIC.  One of their goals is to reduce collaborative viscosity.

Afternoon Meeting

      KUDOS were presented to James Freeman, University of Nebraska at Omaha and others from the other campuses.  Outgoing student Regent Michael Crabb was recognized for his service. 

      All items on the Consent Agenda were approved with minimal discussion.   Items impacting UNO include:  IX-B-1, amendments to the current Collective Bargaining Agreement between the Board of Regents and the American Association of University Professors (UNO/AAUP) for the 2011-2013 biennium (the 1.1% faculty salary raises negotiated); IX-B-11, the form of a license agreement which will be used to grant pouring and vending rights on the University of Nebraska at Omaha campus and authorize the President to execute the final agreement  (soft drink vendor for the UNO campus);  IX-B-12, the selection of Holland Basham Architects to provide architectural design services for the Community Engagement Center at UNO.

2.      Chancellor Christensen and FS President Laquer met March 14, 2011.    

      The proposed move to Division I athletics in the Summit League and elimination of Football and Wrestling was the major item on his agenda.  The final decision is with the Board of Regents; President Milliken has recommended a special session on this topic with video links to out of town regents and an extender 1.5 hour public comment period.  Otherwise the next scheduled meeting would be in late April.  He had met again with the student athletes, and was working to facilitate their transfers to other schools if that was what they wanted.  MIAA and NCAA rules on these transfers require special waivers when a program is discontinued.  Student athletes will retain their scholarships if they want to graduate from UNO. 

      The primary driving force for this change to D1 is economic.  Costs continue to increase, while revenue is flat.  An additional reason is that this will move UNO into compliance with Title IX by providing equal opportunities for women in sports.  The Summit League is a better academic fit for UNO with several large Metropolitan Universities there.  While there is no equivalent to the Big 10 CIC group, there are 2x/year meetings of the academic VCs where collaborations in research and engagement may be fostered.  The geographic fit is also good.  The current UNO athletic budget of $9M is at the midpoint in the Summit League, while the midpoint in the Missouri Valley is $16M (and to which we have not been invited).  In regards to Wrestling, the Summit League does not compete there, so membership in a third conference would be required.  The lowest budget for wrestling in D1 is twice the current UNO wrestling budget, and the competition is at a higher level.  Chancellor Christensen indicated that he had wrestled in school and was a big fan of UNO's program, so this decision was a difficult one for him. 

      Asked about tenured faculty; there are none impacted.  Community donors' responses have been generally positive. 

      We briefly discussed the regents comments from the Friday BoR meeting on UNO research metrics. 

      He was pleased to see the modification of Resolution 3077 (Annual Committee Reports).

      We also discussed Resolution 3078 (Minimum 120 hours for graduation).  I raised some senators concerns about quality.  This is just a floor, and exceptions are acceptable.  For example the State Board of Education requires 140 hours for Elementary Education, so the degree will have to also.  Several engineering programs require 130 to 150 hours which will continue without change. 

      Chancellor Christensen indicated that the last paragraph of Resolution 3079 (Shared Governance) posed a problem since we cannot direct the activities of the Board.  A statement of fact by reference to the specific BoR By-law would remedy that problem. 

3.      Executive Committee & Administration met March 16, 2011.

      AVC Thomas Wallace was the only administrator able to attend the meeting, so it was a very short meeting.

      He gave an update on graduation and commencement:  There will still be three graduations, but only two commencements.  Commencements will be held in May and December.  Those graduating in August will have the choice of going to either the May or December commencement.  There are already a little over 100 August graduates who have indicated that they wish to participate in the May commencement.  Their research has shown that all of those who graduated last August, about 200, can be accommodated at the Civic Auditorium.  If a student, planning to graduate in August, was within 12 hours of graduating, he/she could walk at the May ceremony.  The toughest part is planning for the graduate students, but it looks like that can be done, too. 

      The Missouri Western website has the best example of what a commencement web page can look like. 

All information is right there, like a check list.  AVC Wallace is having I.S. look at creating the same sort of commencement web site for UNO.

      The May 2011 commencement will be at the Civic Auditorium.  The December 17, 2011 commencement will be on campus, at the Sapp Fieldhouse.  Some details of departments are still being worked out.  The Commencement Committee met on Monday, March 14.  The Parking manager, Jim Ecker, presented a parking and traffic plan for accommodating everyone who will be coming to campus for commencements.  Cross Roads will be used as a backup.  Contracts will be sure to note that if Cross Roads parking is needed for overflow, it will be available, and the the shuttle will also be available.

      The meeting adjourned after 10 minutes.

4.      Chancellor's Council meeting for March 24, 2011 was cancelled.

5.      Board of Regents held a Special Session on March 25, 2011.

      Vice President Mitchell attended since President Laquer was out of town.

      The BoR met in a special session to consider the following resolution:

University of Nebraska at Omaha
Acceptance of the invitation to join The Summit League
(an NCAA Division I Intercollegiate Athletic Conference)
March 25, 2011

WHEREAS, the Chancellor of the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) recommends that UNO accept the offer of membership in The Summit League, effective July 1, 2011; and

WHEREAS, this recommendation is forwarded to the Board of Regents with the support of the President of the University of Nebraska; and

WHEREAS, having considered the best interests of the University, the Board of Regents has determined that membership in The Summit League offers an excellent opportunity for its metropolitan campus;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska authorizes UNO's acceptance of membership in The Summit League and, subject to the NCAA's acceptance and approval of UNO's membership application, the Board of Regents hereby fully authorizes the integration and membership of UNO into The Summit League effective and upon such terms and conditions as may be negotiated and approved by the UNO Chancellor.

An extra long 90 minute public comment period was provided prior to presentations by Chancellor Christensen and Athletic Director Trev Alberts.   The resolution was approved unanimously. 

6.      NU President met with the four Faculty Senate Presidents on March 30, 2011.

      President Laquer and the other three Faculty Senate Presidents (UNL, UNMC, and UNK) met with President Milliken over lunch at Varner Hall, March 30. 

      Discussion topics included University budget, Online World Wide, growth of International student enrollment, Athletics, LB555 "Eliminate Special Masters and other provisions of the State Employees Collective Bargaining Act" which was introduced at the University's request, faculty salaries, research competitiveness in the face of declining federal support, innovation campus, how to improve communications with our successors and his office and the Regents, and women's presence in University governance. 

7.      University Wide Teaching Award Luncheon: April 1, 2011, honoring UNO's Department of Information Systems and Quantitative Analysis.

8.      Deans Forum Summary:      As of 4/4/11 the web includes December 16, 2010, Summary

9.      Written Acknowledgements of Resolutions (& Table):

a.      Resolution 3078, 3/9/11:  Minimum Credit Hours at UNO (120)

b.      Resolution 3079, 3/9/11:  Shared Governance

Resolution Action Table
(Action Pending and Current Resolutions)






Admin Accept

Sent for Senate Action



In Progress

Final Action/Resolved



Shared Governance




Minimum Credit Hours at UNO (120)





Instruction on the Ethical Use of Print and Online Sources in Academic Papers




*Chancellor acknowledges that the subject matter is primarily an Academic Affairs issue and has asked Vice Chancellor Hynes to respond as appropriate.



Recommended Plagiarism Policy





-Returned to Faculty Senate for additional language consideration as discussed at the 3/17 meeting with administration.

-Relative to the minor language changes on 3013 (Plagiarism), the chancellor indicates that he would like Academic Affairs to share the policy with  the academic deans at an upcoming meeting.



Parking Issues (Events Calendar)






Regarding Stem Cell Research




F.S. sent to all on 1014/09



UCRCA Funding






"Shots Fired: When Lightning Strikes" Video



Senate in-progress following report



Park-and-Ride/Park-and-Bike System of Transportation or Other Transportation Alternatives


Senate Working on






Electronic Communication






UNO Disaster Planning


Senate to Comm



Return to Senate for further work



UNO Child Care Center


Senate Deferred



2009 Retreat



*3033  (From Chancellor Christensen via Nancy Castilow in an e-mail sent on 5/27/10:  "While he is supportive of Res. 3033, he acknowledges that the subject matter is primarily an Academic Affairs issue and has asked Vice Chancellor Hynes to respond as appropriate." )

*3013  (From Chancellor Christensen via Nancy Castilow in an e-mail sent on 3/11/10) "The chancellor said the first resolution" (3013)  "needs to be considered by Terry" (Hynes) . . . ) (From Chancellor Christensen via Nancy Castilow in an e-mail sent on 4/21/10:  Relative to the minor language changes on 3013 (Plagiarism), the chancellor indicates that he would like Academic Affairs to share the policy with  the academic deans at an upcoming meeting.)

*3004 (From Chancellor Christensen via Nancy Castilow in an e-mail sent on 10/15/09:  "The chancellor will discuss the resolution with Vice Chancellor Conley and Tim Kaldahl, University Relations.")

*3003 (From Chancellor Christensen via Nancy Castilow in an e-mail sent on 10/15/09:  "While the Chancellor has not taken a public position on this matter, he suggests that, should the Faculty Senate wish to do so, this resolution could be forwarded to Donal Burns, BOR Corporation Secretary, to document Senate support."  (This was done by the UNO Faculty Senate on 10/14/09)

*2961 (From Chancellor Christensen via Nancy Castilow in an e-mail sent on 4/0/09:  "The chancellor acknowledges receipt of the resolutions, but suggests that the Senate may want to make a call to Central Administration to inquire about the existence of the U-Wide Benefits Committee, under whose auspices, this might normally fall.  There may be no need to establish a separate task force if this committee, or a subgroup, is active, and would entertain an examination of the existing disability benefit procedure.")

(The Faculty Senate Admin Tech notified the UNO rep to that committee, David Corbin, on 4/9/09.  He replied on 4/12/09:  "The NU Benefits Committee will be meeting on April 16.  I will bring the two resolutions to their attention.  It does seem that the Benefits Committee should be able to handle the issues without a new committee, but I'll wait and see what kind of response I get.")

*2944 (From the EC & Admin Mtg 1/21/09: The Chancellor supports the concept in Resolution 2944 on funding an UCRCA budget line but opined we wouldn't get it during the years of budgetary problems.)(6/10/09 Nancy Castilow wrote for Chanc. Christensen: "One clarification related to  Res. 2944, dealing with ongoing support of the UCRCA budget.  I said that I was open to the concept and supportive of continued funding of the UCRCA budget, albeit we would need to review its  funding during times of budget constraints, as we do with other such programs.  The decision to fund and how much to fund remains the purview of the Office of Academic Affairs.  I did not opine that the UCRCA budget line would automatically see no funding during years of budgetary problems.")

*2931 (From the EC & Admin Mtg 1/21/09:  Senator Sollars gave Wade Robinson a list of faculty willing and qualified to comment on "Shots Fired" While Robinson says all the feedback he has received has been positive, faculty senators reported that students who had viewed the video were not impressed.)

(From Wade Robinson via e-mail on 2/16/09:  "The Shots Fired issue is resolved based on the wording listed.")  

(From Chancellor Christensen via Nancy Castilow in an e-mail sent on 2/20/09: Acknowledge receipt of resolution and list of faculty educators to Assoc. VC Wade Robinson.  Robinson reports that presentations to large campus groups is essentially completed with no further presentations scheduled. No additional action required.)

(From Wade Robinson via e-mail on 2/24/09: "Based on the information you gave me I have contacted a person at NASP to learn more about their PREPaRE program and learn about the program structure and costs.  I have also contacted De. Scott Pollard to get program and cost information as well and hope to hear from both in the near future.  I will also be communicating the UNO faculty you provided as well.")

9/2/09:  As a recently appointed member of the UNO Disaster Preparedness Committee, Past-President Suzanne Sollars will be sent to training to be certified, as are the other members of the committee, by the National Incident Management System (NIMS).  It is affiliated with FEMA and provides a standardized structure for organizations to coordinate incident management.

*2930 (At the EC & Admin Mtg 11/19/08:  VC Conley said that there were a number of components of Resolution 2930, as written, that needed further consideration.) (At the EC & Admin Mtg 1/21/09:  Vice Chancellor Conley reported that B. J. Reed was working with MAT and that there will be an integrated campus parking plan. The Regents will be asked to extend the contract with Crossroads. There was some discussion of providing bicycles for students to go between campuses.) (From Chancellor Christensen via Nancy Castilow in an e-mail sent on 2/20/09: Acknowledge receipt and forward to Vice Chancellor Conley for additional review and implementation as feasible.)

*2928 (From 10/15/2008 EC & Admn Mtg:  Chancellor Christensen said he would bring up Senate Resolution 2928, 10/08/08, concerning seeking alternatives to Lotus Notes, with the President's Council. John Fiene is aware of the problems and supports the direction suggested in the resolution.)

Follow-up by Sollars via e-mail: "Chancellor Christensen brought the matter to President Milliken who concurred with the Lotus Notes problem, but said the matter needed to be deferred until after SIS implementation."

*2909 6/20/08 EC&A Mtg:  Associate Vice Chancellor Robinson discussed Emergency Planning and asked about the creation of a faculty committee that can assist the administration in planning for the continuation of academic programs in crisis situations.  Senate will need to determine in there is a specific senate committee that could do this or if there is a need to develop a committee outside the senate.  See Minutes of Exec Committee and Cabinet 7/9/2008 for further information: See Minutes of Exec Committee and Cabinet 7/9/2008 for further information:

9/2/09:  As a recently appointed member of the UNO Disaster Preparedness Committee, Past-President Suzanne Sollars will be sent to training to be certified, as are the other members of the committee, by the National Incident Management System (NIMS).  It is affiliated with FEMA and provides a standardized structure for organizations to coordinate incident management.

*2899 EC&A Mtg April 16, 2008.  The Chancellor responded to the Senate's recently passed resolution regarding the University's day-care facility.  He was primarily concerned about the Senate's recommendation that UNO develop a lab school as part of the day-care facility, since this represents a significant departure from what the university is doing and would require a substantial investment of resources.  He pointed out that the original goal was to develop a day-care that would meet national accreditation standards.  The differences between day-care and preschool curricula and facilities was discussed.  The administration agreed to provide the Senate with information about the current day-care operation and also agreed to work with the Senate and Student Government to explore the issue if that is desired.

B.     The Treasurer's Report was submitted by Senator Smith.  It was accepted.

1.      Budget Advisory Committee Report:  Senator Bartle reported the committee will meet with President Milliken on April 18, 2011.

IV.     Executive Committee:  Senator Smith moved the following four resolutions for the Executive Committee.  All were passed by the full Senate.

A.    RESOLUTION 3080, 4/13/2011:  Resignation of Senator Bramlett (5/12/10-5/8/13):

BE IT RESOLVED, the Faculty Senate Executive Committee accepts the resignation from the Senate of Frank Bramlett, A&S.

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On 3/18/2011 President Laquer received the following e-mail from Senator Frank Bramlett:  This is just to let you know that I am resigning from the faculty senate effective immediately. I'm on too many committees, and my research and teaching are suffering because of it.

B.     RESOLUTION 3081, 4/13/2011: Honoring the University of Nebraska at Omaha's Department of Information Systems and Quantitative Analysis

WHEREAS teaching is one of the highest callings for the professoriate; and,

WHEREAS recognition of teaching quality by one's peers is a high honor; and,

WHEREAS President Milliken has stated "The department and its faculty have demonstrated a deep commitment to excellence in teaching, collaboration and innovation which benefits not only our students and the university, but Omaha and the state as well;"

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Faculty Senate at the University of Nebraska at Omaha offers our congratulations to the University of Nebraska at Omaha Department of Information Systems and Quantitative Analysis upon their receipt of the 2011 University of Nebraska University-wide Departmental Teaching Award; and,

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the following faculty of the Department of Information Systems and Quantitative Analysis be recognized for their individual and collective contributions in teaching, research, community service and engagement to their department and the university community: Dr. Sidney Davis, Dr. Donna Dufner, Dr. Martina Greiner, Dr. Dwight Haworth, Dr. Deepak Khanachi, Dr. Lotfallah Najjar, Dr. Stacie Petter, Dr. Leah Pietron, Dr. Sajda Qureshi, Dr. Yong Shi, Dr. Paul van Vliet, Ms. Sandy Vlasnik, Dr. Peter Wolcott, Dr. Kerry Ward, and Dr. Ilze Zigurs, Chairperson.

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C.    RESOLUTION 3082, 4/13/11: Honoring Gert-Jan de Vreede for 2011 University of Nebraska Outstanding Research and Creative Activity Award

WHEREAS research and creative activity is foundational in the success of the university enterprise; and

WHEREAS wide dissemination of research by publication is critical for its recognition; and,

WHEREAS the University of Nebraska at Omaha Center for Collaboration Science is a unique and outstanding facility;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Faculty Senate at the University of Nebraska at Omaha offers our congratulations to Dr. Gert-Jan de Vreede upon his receipt of the 2011 University of Nebraska Outstanding Research and Creative Activity Award. 

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D.    RESOLUTION 3083, 4/13/11:  Honoring Jonna Holland for 2011University of Nebraska Outstanding Teaching and Instructional Creativity Award

WHEREAS teaching is one of the highest callings for the professoriate; and,  

WHEREAS recognition of teaching quality by one's peers is a high honor; and,

WHEREAS placing students first is what we do at the University of Nebraska at Omaha;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Faculty Senate at the University of Nebraska at Omaha offers our congratulations to Dr. Jonna Holland upon her receipt of the 2011University of Nebraska Outstanding Teaching and Instructional Creativity Award, and wishes her all the best in the future.

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E.     RESOLUTION 3084, 4/13/11: Congratulation to the recipients of the 2011 UNO Alumni Teaching Award

WHEREAS teaching is one of the highest callings for the professoriate; and,

WHEREAS recognition of teaching quality by one's students is a high honor;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Faculty Senate at the University of Nebraska at Omaha offers our congratulations to the following recipients of the 2011 UNO Alumni Teaching Award:

Sarah K. Edwards, Associate Professor, Department of Teacher Education, College of Education; 

Angela M. Eikenberry, Associate Professor, School of Public Administration, College of Public Affairs and Community Service;

James Fawcett, Associate Professor, Department of Biology, College of Arts and Sciences;

Kath Henebry, Associate Professor, Department of Finance, Banking and Law, College of Business Administration;

Peter Madsen, Associate Professor, Department of Music, College of Communication, Fine Arts and Media;

Michael Matthews, Assistant Professor, Department of Mathematics, College of Arts and Sciences;

Brian McKevitt, Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, College of Arts and Sciences;

Steve Nugen, Senior Research Technology Fellow, School of Interdisciplinary Informatics, College of Information Science and Technology; and

Roger Sash, Associate Professor, Department of Computer and Electronics Engineering, College of Engineering.

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V.      Standing Committee Reports

A.    Committee on Academic and Curricular Affairs:  Senator Bartle reported the Committee met at 2 pm on March 30. Present were Sens. D. Matache, Baguyos, Mitchell and Bartle. Sen Hendricks was excused, Sen. Bonsell was absent.

      Prof. Bill Mahoney presented the proposal for an MS degree in Information Assurance. There is a lot of interest from both students and employers in the degree. There are also scholarships available from federal agencies that can pay for much of the cost students face. There are two concentrations: one in systems and the other in management and policy. There are also two exit options: thesis and coursework/capstone. The vast majority of the courses needed are currently in place and the degree will supplement two existing concentrations in the MS in Computer Science and the MS in Management Information Systems. Sen. Mitchell moved, Sen. Matache seconded to approve the degree. The motion passed unanimously.

      The Committee met with Profs. Newman and Grams of the Philosophy program. They were concerned about the student learning objectives (SLO) for the humanities in the general education curriculum and about the lack of consultation with faculty in the humanities. The SLO do not fit Philosophy courses and are not objectives in Philosophy courses.  A university committee should not lay down the law about the curriculum - this is a violation of shared governance and academic freedom. The SLO should be sent back to the relevant faculty and units for review and approval. The Committee heard the concerns and suggested that Prof. Newman consult with Dr. Deborah Smith-Howell on the issue to see if a resolution could be reached. Drs. Newman and Grams agreed to do so. The Committee will follow up if needed.

      The Committee met with Joyce Crockett representing the Green UNO Task Force, subcommittee on Transit. They have noticed the emergence of hybrid courses which meet in person less than a normal class. This presents an opportunity to use classroom space more efficiently and reduce commuting to campus. They suggested that a suffix be added to course numbers (as is done with distance courses) indicating that the course is a hybrid course, and ideally which days it would meet on campus. This does complicate things, as distance courses are defined as ones that are 50% or more computer mediated. As tuition and fees are different for distance courses than on-campus courses, where would hybrid courses fit and what are the implications for tuition and fees for hybrid courses? The Committee concluded that these administrative issues were not what the Task Force was trying to change and suggested to Joyce that she meet with the Registrar to see if there would be a way to improve the notes in Mavlink so students could more easily recognize a hybrid course. She will do so, and will let the Committee know if we need to follow up.

      Senator Bartle moved the following resolution for the committee.  It passed

RESOLUTION 3085, 4/13/11: M.S. degree in Information Assurance

WHEREAS there is very strong demand in the workplace for well educated people in information assurance, and there is federal funding for scholarships for students pursuing graduate study in this area,

AND WHEREAS faculty in the School of Interdisciplinary Informatics (SI2) are well qualified and sufficiently staffed to offer this degree and have designed a strong curriculum with concentrations in "management and policy" and "systems" that draws from the strengths and existing offerings of the College,

AND WHEREAS the College of Information Science and Technology has presented a sound financial plan to fund this proposal,

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Faculty Senate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha concurs with the SI2 Faculty and College of Information Science and Technology faculty and UNO's Graduate Council who have previously endorsed this proposal, and recommend to the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska that the MS degree in Information Assurance be established.

B.     Committee on Educational Resources and Services:  Senator Siy reported the committee met March 30, 2011.  Members present: Kercher, Maring, Rech, Richter-Egger, Ritzman, Siy.  Guests: Scott Dickey (UNO Bookstore), John Fiene (Information Services)

UNO Bookstore update

      E-textbook program. UNO Bookstore began offering e-textbooks via Jumpbooks in Fall 2010. Jumpbooks is owned by Nebraska Book Company and mainly distributes e-texts from CourseSmart. In Fall 2010, 35 titles were offered and 41 units were sold. In Spring 2011, 65 titles were offered and 76 units were sold. Expect more titles to be offered in future semesters.

      E-textbooks have expiration dates, usually after 180 days, so it is not for students who plan to keep their textbook. From a cost perspective, e-textbooks are cheaper than new textbooks, but the net price is about the same when the textbook is sold back. It may be cheaper to buy a used book and sell it back. However, e-textbooks do have several advantages over traditional textbooks, which some students may find convenient, including ability to search, highlight, comment, and in some cases, ability to share, read out loud and play animations.

      Book rental program. In response to the growing nationwide book rental industry, UNO Bookstore unveiled a new book rental program in Spring 2011, also in partnership with Nebraska Book Company. Rentals usually cost 40%-50% less than new textbooks. The net price ends up being similar to buying a new book and then selling it back, except that the cost is cheaper up front. The student response was favorable, 555 titles were offered and 5065 books were rented. The selection of titles to be made available for renting depends on the collection available at the vendor partner. Titles not available at the partner can be requested, but this would require a commitment from the instructor or department to use the book continuously for up to 3 years.

      Book buyback program. UNO Bookstore continues to pursue an aggressive book buyback program. In December 2010, 18956 books were bought back. Of these, 7520 were bought at half price and resold in Spring 2011 as used books. The remaining 11,436 were bought back at the national market value because they were not readopted for Spring 2011. In comparison, 18466 books were bought back in May 2010 and 10202 were resold as used books for Summer and Fall 2010. These numbers are directly influenced by the faculty's input regarding textbook adoption and the availability of new editions.

      Even with the new e-textbook and book rental programs, the best value for the student is to purchase a used book and sell it back at half price.

What can faculty can do to keep book prices low?

1.      Turn in your book orders on time (at the latest, 2 weeks before buyback!)

2.      Be wary of publisher offered packages that you aren't going to fully integrate into your class.

3.      Be clear on book orders whether a book is required or optional.

4.      Reuse books semester after semester whenever possible and for as long as possible.

5.      Remember that used books are almost 25% less than new books.

Information Services strategic planning update

      Information Services (IS) is in the process of developing a strategic plan for advancing UNO's technological infrastructure for the next 5 years, investing in technology that enhances the educational and research objectives of the university. IS has identified five strategic areas that will influence the IS project portfolio.  From these strategic areas, a list of strategic issues are identified. These strategic issues will then be prioritized. From these, decisions will be made regarding what projects to invest in to address the most important strategic issues. Ultimately, with technology rapidly changing at an unprecedented pace, a strategic plan may be put in place with the understanding that it will need to be continuously adjusted to keep pace with changes in education and technology trends.

C.    Committee on Faculty Personnel and Welfare:  Senator Erickson reported the committee met march 31, 2011, 3:00pm ASH 301M.  Present:  Carballal, Erickson, Melanson, Proulx, Srithongrung, Kelly, Lewis, Marx

Items discussed:

The committee discussed several items in this meeting.  First, Senator Ericksonmoved the following resolution for the committee.  It passed 

1.      RESOLUTION 3086, 4/13/11:  Faculty Development Fellowship

WHEREAS, the University of Nebraska at Omaha has committed itself through its strategic plan to academic excellence, and

WHEREAS, in support of this commitment the University of Nebraska at Omaha is attempting to increase research and creative activity commensurate with that of a metropolitan university of national distinction, and

WHEREAS, programs such as the Faculty Development Fellowship program are critical for the recruitment and retention of high quality and motivated faculty and the realization of academic excellence and increased research and creative activity, and

WHEREAS, at present the one-semester Faculty Development Fellowship program has been suspended and the full year half-pay option is not a viable option for all faculty, and

WHEREAS, the one-semester full-pay Faculty Development Fellowship program can be operated with minimal marginal costs and with no reduction in tuition income, therefore

BE IT RESOLVED, that the Faculty Senate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha strongly recommends that the one-semester Faculty Development Fellowship program be reactivated and that serious consideration be given to its expansion to be available to more faculty.

2.      Joint meeting with Goals and Directions Committee

      We discussed several issues related to the problems raised by Victor Winter at the  March Faculty Senate meeting.

a.       The impact of cutting or not filling faculty lines and its effect on Goal 2 of the Strategic Plan (Academic Excellence), as brought up by Senator Bonnie O'Connell .

b.      The apparent message from the Administration to just do "more of everything" as a response to questions about what constitutes the special mission of a metropolitan university, as brought up by Senator Victor Winter.

      The Faculty Senate supports the Administration's overall goal of advancing the University. We also believe that it would be beneficial to have the faculty play a greater role in crafting policies for achieving this goal and will be requesting opportunities to examine common policies as they relate to the best interests of the university. We have developed a list of questions that we would like to pose to Administration regarding the problems discussed. We propose starting with AVC Deb Smith-Howell or SVC Hynes.  The idea is that this is not meant as confrontational, but a serious set of questions about resources and resource allocations.

1.      If there is no additional (UNO) funding for the budget, (or even serious cuts) how will the re-allocations, if any, be handled?  Will any such cuts be focused, across-the-board, or some combination?  How close is UNO to reaching the point where more (research, teaching, and service) cannot be done?

2.      Based on the Strategic Plan, and specifically Goal 1, what is the formal definition of a metropolitan university?

a.       Does UNO fit that definition after the Carnegie re-classification?

b.      How do the major changes to athletics at UNO change the strategy?

c.       Does (or How does) the P-16 initiative fit into the current strategy and goals?

The meeting ended at approximately 4:00pm.

D.     Committee on Goals and Directions:  Senator Marx reported the Goals and Directions Committee and the Faculty Personnel & Welfare Committee met jointly to discuss the Carnegie research classification, UNO's definition of "metropolitan university," and UNO's plan (or lack thereof) to reallocate funds.  The information is under  Faculty Personnel & Welfare Committee (V. C. above).

E.     Committee on Professional Development:  Senator Hayes reported the Committee met on Wednesday March 30th at 1:00.   Members present:  Karen Hayes, (Chair),                  
Barbara Robins, Cynthia Robinson,Victor Winter, (Vice Chair).  Mansour Zand was Excused.  

F.     Committee on Rules:  Senator  Barone reported the Committee met Wednesday, March 30, 2011.  Present: Barone, Decker, Hewins-Maroney, Smith, Waggoner.  Excused: Bernstein.  Guest: Sue Bishop.

      The Rules Committee devoted its entire meeting to reviewing the results of the Faculty Senate Committee Service Preference Form that was sent to all 490 full time faculty earlier this semester.  This year we had a response rate of 130 surveys returned. The Rules Committee worked collaboratively to assign individuals to committee service based on their expressed preferences.  Rules Committee members will now follow up and contact each potential assignee to insure that they are willing and able to serve on the specific committee. Members will report their results at the next regular meeting of the committee on April 27.

VI.             Non-Senate Committee Reports

A. Academic Freedom Coalition of Nebraska (AFCON):  Senator Mitchell wrote the meeting was held March 12, 2011.

Topics of Information and Action

  • Treasurer's Report – Balance on hand as of March 11 is $4,379.92.  A motion was passed to appropriate $50 for a half page AFCON advertisement in the ACLU annual meeting program.
  • The AFCON brochure with a list of the 2011 officers and the new AFCON web address will be updated.
  • President Wagner reported that the most interesting action by AFCON in the last month was the public hearing on the Student Expression Act.
  • SENTINEL articles should be sent to Tom Black by May 23, 2011.  The next issue of the Sentinel will be available on June 17, 2011.
  • CIR Bills – AFCON will send a letter to the Business and Labor Committee of the Legislature in support of collective bargaining as it relates to protection of academic freedom.  A similar letter will be sent to NSEA.
  • Legislative Bill 470 – A motion was made to change AFCON's position on LB470 from "support" to "neutral."
  • Nebraska Library Association submitted a letter in support of LB582, the Student Expression Act, to the Education Committee of the Legislature.

The next meeting is Saturday, April 9th in Lincoln at the Eisley Library – 9:00 AM

B.     Academic Planning Council (APC):  Senator Lewis reported the APC did not meet last month to committee members' scheduling conflicts.  The meeting has been rescheduled for Wednesday, April 13, 2011.  An external reviewer, Dr. Flore Zephyr (from the University of Missouri-Columbia), Dr. Barbara Pickering (Communications Department, UNO) and myself completed the on-site review of the Foreign Languages Department.  A review of the English Department is scheduled to occur in the next couple of weeks.

C.     American Association of University Professors (AAUP):  Senator  Mitchell wrote the AAUP met April 5, 2011.  The following were topics of discussion at the meeting:

  • Student Evaluation
  • The tenure buy out
  • Legislative Bill 29
  • One Voice Rally – Lincoln, April 5th
  • Spring Dinner - Upstream West on April 29th .

D.    Commencement Committee:  Professor Bill Corcoran wrote the Commencement Committee met on March 14 (no meetings in January or February). The decisions to move the December 2011 and all subsequent commencements to the UNO campus and the elimination of the August commencement ceremony have been finalized since the December meeting. (There is still an August graduation but no commencement.) This meeting was concerned with updates.

  • A web site has been set up to provide information to students about the May and December commencements.
  • The application for a degree was extended from March 4 to March 18.
  • About 100 of the 120 students who have applied to graduate in August plan to attend the May Commencement. (They could also choose to attend the December commencement.)
  • There appears to be enough parking spaces to handle commencements on campus; the totals include possible parking at the Pacific location if necessary.\
  • Details about award presentations will be made at a future meeting; although, it was mentioned that each college should present their own awards.

E.     Graduate Council:  Professor Jeanette Harder wrote the Graduate Council met March 14, 2011.

Dean's Report

Students graduating in August can walk in either May or December – deadline is Friday for students to apply.  August graduates will need to also meet deadlines in summer (about July 1, things cleared by July 28)

1.      Applications and Enrollment

  • Reports on admissions statistics going out. G.O. is sending many reminder E-mails to applicants before they hit the "submit" button. Now also following up completed applications. Want programs to follow up as much as we can.
  • Applications are at about the same place as 2009, a bit above 2010.

2.      New web-based letter of recommendation form

  • Current procedures for recommendations will be in place through admissions for Spring 2012; new system in place for Fall 2012 admissions.
  • Request for recommendations will still not go out until applicants "submit" their applications.
  • Finalizing this new process by end of Spring Break.


How to Successfully Recruit Graduate Students 2 day conference

  • Deb, Hugh, Paul attended. Organization is working/consulting with Kearney and Lincoln.
  • Overall message: we need to increase our applicant pool. We need information on where our students come from (and other data) so we can target them.
  • Pool to full applications to enrollments.
  • G.S. needs to provide the data and the PR templates, so programs can just focus on their info.
  • Never put a building photo on a PR piece, always include a P.S. with a key note, make all materials written in terms of "you" and how "you" will benefit (same for websites). Videos of testimonials on website are important.
  • Make sure we're not being discriminatory in sculpting our applicant pool.

Committee Reports

Policy & Planning

  • Appeal of General Academic Matters
    • Draft new section 1.0 giving guidance on documentation on what went wrong and what the student wants
    • Giving feedback to Steve Bullock on Academic Program Review guidelines – Steve is leaving UNO mid-May – send document to whole Grad Council – solicit feedback from whole Grad Council before P&P's next meeting.

      Courses & Evaluations

  • MS in Information Assurance:  Approved. Goes to Faculty Senate next.
  • MA non-thesis option for Social Gerontology:  Acknowledged.

Dates to remember

  • Elton S. Carter Graduate Honors Reception, Wednesday, March 16, 2011 @ 5:00, MBSC, Ballroom
  • Spring Graduate Faculty meeting, Monday, April 25, 2011, @ 2:30, MBSC, Dodge Room
  • The UNO Graduate Council meets the second Monday of each month, in the MBSC, U Mo Ho Room @ 2:30 on October 11, November 8, December 13, January 10, February 14, March 14, and April 11

F.     Facilities Planning Committee:  Senator Baguyos reported that there will be meeting of this committee next week.  The meeting will involve the Community Engagement Center.  One item was to be sure parking will still be available for PAC, the Library, and WFAB, and also for the new building.  He will take any Faculty Senate concerns or comments to the meeting/administration. 

G.    Strategic Planning Steering Committee:  Senator O'Connell reported the committee met March 30, 2011

      Update from Chancellor-The Chancellor shared some of his thoughts regarding the Athletic Department decision to join a Division 1 conference. He mentioned three criteria he'd stressed to the Athletic Director prior to the decision: that the program have a future, that it have financial viability, and that it tie in with UNO's academic goals and not become a stand alone program. The Chancellor believes we were fortunate to get the invitation and that this is a great opportunity not without its down sides. His decision was also made on the belief that to remain in the current division would mean cutting back and down on all funding aspects of coaching, recruitment, and the overall athletic program. He has been meeting with small groups of students, athletes, and other university community members for question and answer sessions. There will be more opportunities in the future for the campus to review and ask questions at upcoming budget forums.  UNO is the first metropolitan university to go through this process in the Summit Conference.

      Final Review of Goal 2-The Goal 2 task force moved that the steering committee recommend the Jan 4 draft of the revised Goal 2 and objectives. It was moved and passed that the first sentence of the paragraph under the goal be revised as follows:

"UNO, led by the faculty in collaboration with staff and students, strives for excellence at all levels of teaching, scholarship, research, and creative activity consistent with its metropolitan mission." (underlined phrase is the added revision)

The committee then passed a motion to recommend the revised draft with the additional wording to the Chancellor.  The Goal 2 Task Force was thanked for all their hard work in this process.

      UNO Alumni Strategic Plan-Lee Denker briefed the committee on the strategic planning process underway with the board of directors of the Alumni Association. It has been 10 years since the association last reviewed its strategic plan, and the new version identifies four priority areas their teams will work on over the summer: to enhance coordination, increase awareness, integrate consistent "branding", and create a sustainable funding model.

      Another change will also have a representative from each of the colleges reporting back to the Alumni Board on activities similar to the current structure of the NU Foundation.

      Student Government - Representative Michael Crabb reported that the Student Senate meets soon to install new officers, the first time through for the new election schedule. The new Freshman Leadership Council has had a positive effect encouraging candidates for spring election and hopefully will field more strong candidates in the future.

      Other reports- The Chancellor noted the very positive impact of 7 Days of Service  and how it has become an excellent demonstration of  UNO /community engagement.

      Last Meeting is April 27. The Steering Committee will review the Strategic Plan and suggest indicators that might be connected to the UNO E-Portfolio.

VII.          Old Business

A.    Modification of Resolution 3079 (Shared Governance):  There was no motion to reconsider this resolution, so it stands as passed last month.

B.     Salvation Army Backpack Program/5000 Neon Highlighters:  "Highlight the Need" Drive for Salvation Army April 8-May 9.

      In an effort to support the Salvation Army's Back-to-School Packpack Program, the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) Staff Advisory Council (SAC) has launched a campus campaign – "Highlight the Need" – to collect new highlighters of all colors and sizes for students in Omaha.

      Faculty, staff, students and members of the community are encouraged to donate new highlighters at the UNO Bookstore, located on the first floor of the Milo Bail Student Center.  The collection runs on campus Friday, April 8, through Monday, May 9.

      The UNO Bookstore will sell highlighters four for $1; donations of new highlighters purchased off campus will also be accepted at the UNO Bookstore.

      For the second consecutive year, UNO has engaged in a friendly competition with Creighton University.  New to this year's school supply drive is College of Saint Mary.

      Each school's goal is to collect a specified number of a school supply.  This year, UNO is collecting 5,000 highlighters.

      Last year, UNO successfully reached its goal of collecting 5,000 new erasers for the Salvation Army's Back-to-School Backpack Program.

      For more information, contact SAC member Kim Kronschnable at (402) 554-3497.

(At the March 9, 2011, Faculty Senate meeting $42 was collected.  With today's donations, there was enough to purchase $60.00 worth of highlighters = 240 highlighters.) 

VIII.       The meeting adjourned at 3:45 p.m. with announcements.