Faculty Senate

Information for the Faculty of the University of Louisville.



The regular meeting of the Faculty Senate was held on January 7, 2015 at 3:00 P.M. in the Chao Auditorium, Ekstrom Library, Belknap Campus, Pamela Feldhoff presiding.


Senators Registering Attendance:

A&S: David Brown, Jennie Burnet, Carrie Donald, Jasmine Farrier, Karen Hadley, Greg Hutcheson, Ron Sahoo, David Simpson, Joseph Steffen BUSINESS: Robert Marker, Ben Foster, Bruce Kemelgor, Robert Myers DENTISTRY: Robert Staat, Dave Willis EDUCATION: Patrick Hardesty, Caroline Sheffield, Tom Simmons  LAW: Kurt Metzmeier, Luke Milligan, Enid Trucios-Haynes LIBRARIES: Carrie Daniels, Margo Smith MEDICINE: Forest Arnold, Pamela Feldhoff, Jeff King, Michael Tseng MUSIC: Krista Wallace-Boaz NURSING: Karen Singleton PART-TIME FACULTY: Donna Gaus, Joseph Gutmann, Rose Mills, Susan Peacock, John Ritz PUBLIC HEALTH: Ray Austin, Scott LaJoie SPEED SCHOOL: Kyung Kang, J.P. Mohsen, Kevin Walsh

Also Attending:

Ex Officio:            James Ramsey, Shirley Willihnganz, Allie Funk

Others:                 Tracy Eells, Robert Stenger (ULARP)

Press:                    Janet Cappiello, UofL Today


Senators Not Registering Attendance:

A&S: Beth Willey, Elaine Wise DENTISTRY: Ricardo Caicedo, Don Demuth EDUCATION: Monica Delano KENT: Seana Golder, Martin Hall, Wanda Lott Collins LIBRARIES: Terri Holtze MEDICINE: Yousef Abu-Kwaik, Eric Burton, Luz Fernandez, Arun Gadre, Saeed Jortani, Sham Kakar, Brad Keller, Rainer Lenhardt, Ken Palmer, Chin Ng, David Stirling MUSIC: Randi Bolding, Dror Biran NURSING: Heather Owens, Valerie McCarthy PART-TIME FACULTY: Michael Wade SPEED SCHOOL: Roger Bradshaw


CALL TO ORDER: – Feldhoff


ACTION ITEM: Consideration of the Minutes - Feldhoff

The minutes of the December 3, 2014 meeting will be considered next month.

REPORT: Student Government Association – Allie Funk

Allie Funk said the SGA is continuing its work on a student version of the 21st Century Initiative and will have a draft soon. She also said SGA elections will be held in February.


REPORT: Staff Senate – Ginger Brown

No report was made.


INFORMATION ITEM: A&S Bylaws revisions (First Reading) – Wallace-Boaz

The first reading of Arts and Sciences Bylaw revisions were circulated before winter break. The revisions will return in February for a discussion and vote. Responding to a question regarding why some items in the revision are dated 2012, Wallace-Boaz said these are items that were brought to the A&S committee in 2013 but had never been brought to the Redbook Committee, and therefore they had not been approved by the entire Faculty Senate.


INFORMATION ITEM: Introduction of the Depression Management Program – Russ

Pamela Feldhoff informed the Senate that Eric Russ, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist, works in the Department of Psychiatry's Depression Center,  of HR, who was to provide the introduction.  Dr. Russ, will join the Faculty Senate at a later date (possibly March). She said the Depression Management Program was designed like the university’s COPD and diabetes management programs. However, due to leadership changes in HR the implementation of the Depression Management Program is, currently, on hold.

REPORT: University Provost – Dr. Shirley Willihnganz

Provost Shirley Willihnganz reported that Harland Sands, the university’s new CFO/COO started this week and the two had met several times. She said decisions are being made as to the reporting structure now that he has arrived. She said Sands was brought to the university to strengthen the financial chain of command. She also said Mitchell Payne and Susan Howarth were promoted to associate vice president positions, and Sands holds an executive vice president position. Among the departments that will report to Sands are IT and finance; Sands reports to Willihnganz. Large issues will be referred to Dr. James Ramsey. Among the structural changes being considered, it is undecided whether Housing will remain under Student Affairs, which at the moment reports to Willihnganz. She said there are issues of communication and culture that must be addressed. She said that in many places communication and culture comes from Human Resources, and discussions are underway to determine whether the current opening in Human Resources will remain a vice president or be moved to director. She said the university has been working on the whole issue of communication and culture but the work is not having the impact that we want. Answering a question about whether the head of student affairs will remain a VP position, Willihnganz said no decision has been made and if the Faculty Senate would like to weigh in with advice, to let her know.

Leslie Strohm, the university’s newly appointed vice president for strategy and general counsel, begins Feb. 1 and reports to President Ramsey, Willihnganz said.

Willihnganz discussed Academic Analytics along with Bob Goldstein of institutional research, who distributed an informational packet to senators (attached). She said Academic Analytics is a tool the university purchased that allow the university to compare our academic programs with those at other institutions. She used the example of comparing communications faculty, emphasizing the data would not be used alone but as part of a bigger picture for evaluating programs. Among other things, the university choose comparison groups and the analytics can be adapted to reflect the work done at the university. She said the university is trying to evaluate programs. The information is just data that helps administrators figure out what we want to do to get better.

She asked senators to help her reassure faculty members that the university is not looking at this data to decide what will be shut down.

Responding to a question about whether AA is only for professional or PhD programs, Goldstein said while that is true, AA will provide other data and is driven by faculty.

Responding to a question about whether faculty can access the data, Goldstein said not at this time. It would be up to the deans to decide how AA will be implemented and information shared.

Willihnganz said the university is currently controlling access to the data to be sure those reading the data are properly trained. She said the university is training users to be sure the data is relevant to UofL. Goldstein said every unit has a representative on an advisory board that he set up for AA, and the representatives of the group and associate deans are in training.

Willihnganz said she would not have a problem with everyone having access as long as they were trained.

She said the university has a four-year contract with AA.

Feldhoff commented that the university should assess how the AA tool is working six months to a year before the contract ends.

Responding to a question about whether the data in AA is based on CVs, Goldstein said the information has to be contextualized. He offered to send the algorithm to anyone who would like to see it.

Willihnganz again reiterated that the information is being used as a place to start conversations and move the university forward.

Joe Steffen commented that the AA data was looking at aggregate groups and not individuals.

Willihnganz said AA was not a tool for tenure and promotion but rather that it is useful for program review.

Responding to a question regarding how the data is weighted, Goldstein said he is able to change the weights. He said he would look into how grants are weighted, as he did not know. He added he has asked the working group how they want to do weighting.

Willihnganz again reiterated that the university is in the process of building the database so that it will be usable for UofL.

She noted two future dates of importance:

1)      Jan. 28, which will mark the first meeting of a group that will be looking at research priorities. Members are deans, department chairs an some select faculty members.

2)      Feb. 27, which will be a day of meetings to begin working on closing the gap that exists in the graduation rate for those of underrepresented minorities, first-generation college students and underprepared students. These meetings will be open to all.

Responding to a question, Willihnganz said the university is not currently searching for any deans.

Responding to a question about underprepared students and whether they belong at UofL, Willihnganz said most of the students who attend UofL are prepared, but that some, for example, may not be ready for college algebra, including those who have the ACT scores. She said the university wants to make sure our criteria is not so restrictive that students are being left out. She added that a large group of students is underfinanced and rely on Pell grants, the Cardinal Covenant, the Porter Scholarships.

Responding to a question from Feldhoff about summer school, Willihnganz said the university will continue its pilot program this summer. She commented that the program will work if everyone is fair.

REPORT: University President – Dr. James Ramsey

President James Ramsey introduced Harland Sands. Sands spoke briefly, thanking the Senate and saying he had an interesting first three days. He expressed excitement to be at the university and to be part of the leadership team at UofL. He said he is confident he can plug into the university’s issues, having been a vice provost in his previous job. He said the three most important things he is looking at are financial integrity, transparency and customer service.

Ramsey said Sands understands the business of higher education.

Ramsey said he had been reflecting over winter break about UofL as a place of great history and tradition. He said UofL continues to build on that history and tradition, citing the rising ACT scores among incoming freshman but also saying UofL has not forgotten about educational opportunity for all students. He also noted UofL had the highest six-year graduation rate in history last year (53.6 percent) and that the university would continue to move forward in challenging times.

He described as one challenge President Obama’s recommendation that the U.S. Department of Education rate all U.S. post-secondary institutions using a narrow set of criteria. He said a skeletal framework was released in mid-December, 2014, and that there is currently time for public comment. The proposal looks at factors such as access to federal aid, family contributions, family income, first-generation student status, price, performance. The federal proposal will result in one of three ratings: good, bad and in between. He said he has proposed to all the other public universities in Kentucky that they come together and make a statement during the public comment period. He added there are no adjustments due to mission differentiation; the only differentiation is between two- and four-year institutions.

Ramsey said the Council on Postsecondary Education is not where it wants to be with a performance funding model. He said the university has expressed serious concerns about the model.

He said the state legislature session this year is a short one (non-budget), and the major focus will be looking toward the 2016 budget session. He noted that two supporters of higher education, Larry Clark and Tommy Thompson, are no longer in the legislative leadership.

He noted that state revenues rose significantly in November, a bit of good budgetary news.

Responding to a question about a pending donation from the Koch Bros. to the university, Ramsey said the academic donation would involve $5 million from Papa John’s founder John Schnatter and $1.3 million from the Koch Foundation. He said the donation would result in the creation of a center for free enterprise in the College of Business. He said the university is working on the gift agreement to ensure it is in-line with the Redbook.

Willihnganz encouraged the senators to look up the Koch Foundation, noting it was financially conservative but not socially conservative.


REPORT: Standing Committee Reports

Academic Programs Committee (APC) – This committee did not meet.

Committee on Committees and Credentials (CCC) – This committee did not meet.

Part-time Faculty Committee (PTFC) - Met Dec. 8 and heard from Gary Becker of the University Parking office. Susan Peacock said Becker made good suggestions that addressed the concerns of part-time faculty and their access to parking. Becker went over the basics of stadium permits, one-day printable permits and noted that part-time faculty can park in red after 5 p.m. Peacock is sending out a series of emails to part-time faculty telling them their options. The committee also appointed members to the SACS reaccreditation QEP Educational Committee and Education Committee  It also discussed new ways to determine how part-time faculty should be paid.

Planning & Budget Committee (P&B) - This committee did not meet.

Redbook & Bylaws Committee (RB) – Is moving forward on documents submitted by the School of Nursing.

Executive Committee (XC) - Met in December and also with the president and provost to discuss budget issues and the Schnatter/Koch gift.


Chair’s Report – After reading a series of articles in the Chronicle of Higher Education on alcohol use and binge-drinking on college campuses, she was curious how the Alcohol-Edu Haven training had gone in the fall semester. She said they reported a 97 percent compliance rate and she is inviting then to the February meeting for an update.

Willihnganz said university faculty need new training on how to handle sexual harassment claims, as new federal guidelines require faculty members to report these incidents if they become aware of them. Feldhoff said she would pursue the matter further.

New Business


Old Business




The meeting was adjourned at 4:45 P.M.





Respectfully submitted,

Gretchen Stein Henry

Faculty Senate Secretary