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Faculty Senate meeting overview: September 2012

by UofL Today last modified Sep 06, 2012 12:59 PM

The Faculty Senate is part of UofL’s shared governance system, which also includes the Staff Senate and the Student Government Association. Senators are elected by their peers.

The full body met in regular session Sept. 5 in Chao Auditorium, Ekstrom Library. Outgoing Chair Bob Staat opened the meeting before turning over the figurative gavel to incoming Chair Joe Steffen. This is what happened:

Action

  • Approval of a department name change requested by the College of Education and Human Development bylaws (opens as PDF) to better reflect its mission under terms of the program’s accreditation.
  • First reading of College of Business documents (bylaws, personnel documents and organization chart).
  • Approval of an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner master’s level certificate program (goes next to Board of Trustees). The program meets a growing need of hospitals to provide acute care and fills a gap left by shortened hours for resident physicians.
  • Approval of a Peace, Justice and Conflict Transformation certificate program (goes next to Board of Trustees). The undergraduate and post-baccalaureate program draws from 18 departments and is intended to be a broad study of peace and justice topics, including mediation. The program requires a capstone program in the community.

Reports to the Senate

Bob Staat: Presented the annual chair’s report. He praised the strong support of administration for its support of shared governance, efforts of the president and provost to attend every Faculty Senate meeting and provide useful information, the accessibility of other senior administrators, and administration’s insistence on getting faculty input on issues that affect the university. He said his goals when he became chair of the senate were to improve communication to the faculty regarding senate business and to better inform the senate of relevant legislative issues. Monthly post-meeting reports are helping with the first goal, but Staat urged senators to share information with their colleagues. Staat acquired a Faculty Senate seat on the legislative review panel to meet his second goal. He also reported that he is working with University Advancement and selected members of the Board of Trustees in an effort to raise funds for a James R. Ramsey Endowed Chair in Business Economics within the College of Business. Read the full report (opens as PDF).

Carrie Mattingly, SGA academic vice president: Told senators to let her know if they know of any university committees that want student reps. She also invited them to the Advising Fair on Sept. 13 and

reported that she plans to meet with Bob Goldstein, institutional research, about policies surrounding student completion of the faculty evaluation forms.

Ginger Brown, Staff Senate rep to Faculty Senate: Reported that the Staff Senate will have a retreat and meeting Sept. 10. She also asked the senators to urge staff in their departments to get involved with Staff Senate.

Sam Connally, vice president for human resources: Reported that Human Resources is trying to tackle a projected $2.4 million deficit by rebidding health plan related contracts. Those are COBRA direct billing, flexible spending, disease management, health management and health insurance. Some of the RFPs still are under review.

James Ramsey, president: Started by saying that he is proud of the freshman class. It is academically well-prepared and very diverse. He also said that he and Provost Shirley Willihnganz are planning to pull together a university-wide steering committee to review university-wide goals (the 2020 Plan), issues in higher education and business processes given the fiscal environment that sees continual decreases in state support. The goal is to put together a document that the Board of Trustees can use when setting future goals for the university and its administrators. They will have more information for faculty and staff after State of the University week. Ramsey also said the RFP process for a partner for the hospital still is under way.

Shirley Willihnganz, provost: Reported that preliminary results are back for the Great Colleges to Work For survey. They show improvement over the last survey period two years ago, but room for more improvement. She and institutional research have requested the granular data so they know better what issues to address to keep improving.

The Senate will meet again Wednesday, Oct. 3, at the Health Sciences Center (location to be determined).

Prepared by Janene Zaccone, UofL internal communications manager, for the Faculty Senate

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