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April Faculty Senate Meeting Overview

by UofL Today last modified Apr 07, 2011 01:50 PM

The Faculty Senate is part of UofL's shared governance system, which also includes the Staff Senate and Student Government Association.

Senators are elected by their peers.

The full body met in regular session April 6 at Ekstrom Library. Chair Bob Staat presided. This is what happened:


The Senate had its second reading of the College of Education and Human Development bylaws but tabled a motion to approve after learning that CEHD faculty have not voted on them. That vote is scheduled for the next faculty meeting.

The Senate approved creation of the Center for Arts and Culture Partnerships to be house in the College of Arts and Sciences. This is an evolution of the Arts and Culture Partnerships Initiative which has existed since 2007. The initiative has developed partnerships with such institutions as Crane House, Speed Museum, Frazier History Museum, and 15 others. Partnership details vary, but often include internship opportunities for students. Read the proposal

Reports to the Senate

Higher Education Opportunity Act Textbook Implications: HEOA took effect July 1, 2010, and requires that universities post textbook information so students can see the entire financial commitment they are making as they register. Sally Molsberger, purchasing, and Scott Shuknecht, UofL bookstore, presented to the group. Important points include:

  • It is important for faculty to submit their book orders early so the information is available when students start registering for classes. Not having this information available can result in fines for the university.
  • The most important piece of information for faculty to submit is the book’s ISBN number so the bookstore is able to get the correct edition.
  • UofL Bookstore acts as the submission hub (required by law) and shares the book information with the two bookstores near Belknap Campus. Submitting the textbook through the UofL Bookstore does not limit students’ ability to purchase it at another bookstore.
  • If there is no textbook for a course, faculty still need to submit that. The listing would be “no textbook required.”
  • Molsberger has communicated the requirements to faculty through deans, UofL Today and the provost’s office, and has presented to the unit business managers meeting, as well as to the Faculty Senate. She will continue to use UofL Today and other means to remind faculty to let the bookstore know their textbook needs.

Tony Belak, ombudsman: Belak has been ombudsman for six months. During that time, he has had about 30 inquiries. About 50 percent have been from faculty, 35 percent from staff and the rest from grad assistants, who are eligible for his services as employees but not for student issues.

He is in the process of sitting for certification through the International Ombuds Association. The certification is new; relatively few ombudsmen have it. Karen Porter, Belak’s administrative assistant, also is in the process of preparing for certification.

Belak said he is available 24/7. He reminded the senators that his services are confidential.

President James Ramsey: Ramsey said there will be no additional budget cut from Frankfort for 2011–12 beyond that which already is in place. The Office of Finance is proceeding with the budget based on that information.

Here are the president’s other main points:

  • Ramsey will discuss the budget, including salaries and tuition, at an April 12 budget forum. It will be at 2 p.m., in Floyd Theater, Student Activities Center.
  • UofL's Charting Our Course fundraising campaign is gaining momentum and has passed the $420 million mark. The goal is $750 million by 2013.
  • The due diligence process continues on merger of UofL Hospital with Saint Joseph Health Systems and St. Mary’s HealthCare/Jewish Hospital HealthCare Services continues.
  • Campus interviews for the post of executive vice president for health affairs start April 7. Constituent groups are preparing reports for the president after their meetings with candidates for the post of executive vice president for research and innovation.
  • The search committee for the dean of the College of Education and Human Development is vetting candidates.
  • The Phi Beta Kappa membership team visit in March went well. There are several steps to go in consideration of UofL’s application.

Provost Shirley Willihnganz: Willihnganz talked about the Conflict of Interest policy rollout. The first part is awareness. She urged people to go to the Conflict of Interest website to review the Code of Conduct and different policies so they know what conflicts are. The next step will be a Conflict of Interest disclosure process that everyone who works at UofL will have to complete. Until that is in place, she said, people can contact Richard Huck, conflict of interest officer, if they need to disclose a conflict.

“We have to take this seriously for a lot of reasons,” she said, including more stringent reporting requirements from granting agencies, financial institutions and others.

Her other points included:

  • The provost’s office is gearing up for the SACs 2012 assessment. SACs especially will be reviewing progress on Ideas to Action, UofL’s quality enhancement plan.
  • Chair workshops are nearing their end. Two that remain will address the budget and fraud issues.
  • The 3rd Annual Ideas to Action Institute is going to be May 23–25. She encouraged faculty to attend.
  • Ideas to Action will have “Lights, Cameras … Ideas to Action” on April 20 to highlight student digital critical thinking projects. Several classes and disciplines were involved in the project. The screening will be at Rauch Planetarium, on the north side of Belknap Campus.
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