A&S Planning and Budget Commmittee Minutes April 29 2005

College of Arts and Sciences Faculty Assembly meeting

April 29, 2005

Report from the Planning and Budget Committee:

The A&S Planning and Budget Committee (PBC) met regularly on behalf of the faculty to discuss issues related to accountability of our College. In the past and due to the budget crisis of the Commonwealth, the committee emphasis was more or less on budget issues in that we advised the college administration on how to strategize and make budget cuts from the faculty and staff perspective. During the last academic year, the committee has increased its emphasis on planning issues as we felt that several of the shortcomings on the college scorecard were related to intra-college planning.

At the beginning of our 2004-2005 term, the committee was charged by the Dean “to submit a written report to the faculty of the College stating clearly how well, in the Committee’s opinion, the current standing budget will permit attainment of the College’s goals and priorities.” This written report is forthcoming.

Let me begin with critique directed towards ourselves and to the college administration. The committee was charged in writing “to meet with the Dean twice per year to review the budget proposal for the College before submitting it to the University administration, to review and discuss with the Dean proposals for new or altered programs, proposed legislation or other matters of budgetary nature “– almost all of which has not been implemented. It was therefore not possible for the committee to submit to the Faculty a written report pertaining these issues.

On the other hand, the committee had successful dialog with the faculty and the Dean’s office. The committee communicated twice in writing to the Dean on its agenda and provided recommendations. The committee welcomed the Dean in its March meeting during which some of the issues addressed in the Committee memos were discussed.

So what has the committee discussed and accomplished?

The agenda roster included:

  • Working conditions and morale of employees:
    • state of physical plant and cleanliness
    • interactions between faculty and staff
  • Review of the General Education requirements
  • Review of restructuring of advising and its impact on retention and graduation
  • Review of accountability with regards to institutional research and its impact on retention and graduation in connection with the College Scorecard and Accreditation.
  • Review of graduate research and education in the College of A&S

What did the Committee achieve?

  1. With strong support from the Dean’s office, our revised version of the policy on GE requirements has been forwarded to the office of Assoc. Provost Billingsley where it is currently being reviewed.
  2. With the input of faculty expertise from the Department of Sociology, the Committee has crafted a memorandum to this faculty body that contains a proposal for action to improve the college scorecard regarding student retention and graduation.
  3. With support from the Dean office through its liaison in person of ex-officio committee member Assoc. Dean Jayanthi, the committee brings forward a memo with a proposal for action to improve graduate research in the College of A&S, with emphasis on the doctoral programs; and
  4. In a third memorandum, the Committee strongly advocates concerted action of the faculty and the administration of this college to request and negotiate with Central Administration a drastic change in enrollment appropriations and unit tuition recovery to benefit exclusively the teaching mission of our College, which provides the lion’s share of this institution’s instruction, mentoring and advising activities.

Last but not least, in thinking about the college’s wellbeing, the committee has discussed the urgent need for more creative development activities, which likely also requires a shift in institutional development policy, which is based on “turfs.” The committee also finds that part of this development policy should be an aggressive campaign to improve the image of the College that portraits the College appropriately. It is our understanding that this begins inside the College, in that we openly value all contributors to the success of the college and stop selling ourselves as a “ College of Liberal Arts.”

If we wanted to uphold this model we should rename ourselves into the College of Liberal and Illiberal Arts, where the first are taught to educate the free man and the latter are taught for the scholastic pursuit of science in sensu strictu.

The following comment was not mentioned during the assembly:

Historically the Artistic Faculty “ordo artistarum” was as one of the four founding faculties of a “Universitas Generale” and constituted the foundation for Theology faculty “Ordo Theologorum”, law faculty “Ordo Legistarum” and the Ordo Physicorum, or medical faculty.

In the middle ages, Ordo artistarum was divided into artes liberales et artes illiberales; however, an “Ordinarius” (full member of the faculty representing a field) in the sciences was not appointed until the 1800s, as that privilege needed to be whittled away from ordinaria for medicine, theology and rhetoric …….. I do enjoy academic history.


Related Content:

Memoranda presented at Faculty Assembly: