The Faculty of the University of Wisconsin-Parkside will hold its Fall 2007 meeting at 3:30 p.m., Thursday, October 25, 2007, in Molinaro Hall D137
The University Committee, in consultation with the Chancellor, has approved the following agenda:
Call to Order
1) Minutes of the Faculty Meeting of April 3, 2007 PSF # 35/2006-7
2) Old Business
3) New Business:
A motion to form a Committee of the Whole will automatically be on the floor. Should the motion be approved, the Committee of the Whole will be chaired by Dennis Rome, the University Committee Chair. Under UWPF 1.04(3), the Chancellor is the presiding officer for faculty meetings, except in this circumstance.
The Committee of the Whole may report recommendations representing a consensus of those present, as determined by the Chair, or it may rise without report.
Committee of the Whole Discussion:
TOPICS for Meetings with the Chancellor and Interim Provost
1) Space in Greenquist Hall is a problem. Office and Research spaces are maxed out. Depart-ments housed in Greenquist are not able to contribute much to growth in the student population. What can be done about this issue?
2) What's going on with the Provost search?
3) Many faculty have noticed the renewed emphasis on academic excellence by the administration. This is heartening, as it reflects a return to the university's core mission. What strategies are being put in place to enhance our external academic reputation, as well?
4) Has any thought been given to replacing "University of Opportunity" with a tag phrase that incorporates academic excellence?
5) An argument can be made that the two best reasons for a school our size to have athletics are to develop school spirit and to enhance our regional visibility. UW-Parkside fails to use athletics for either, mostly because we continue to play against schools in Kentucky and Missouri rather than schools in our region. Is there any intention of ever kicking the butts of UW-Whitewater or UW-Green Bay?
6) What metrics are being used to evaluate Phase 2 of orientation? When will we know the results? (This question is addressed at the 10/23 Senate meeting.)
7) I would like the rationale for the new computers forced on us. I have gone from a fine computer that was only one year old to a lesser model with fewer features. So far the computer folks have spent at least five hours trying to get this one functioning properly.
8) There are two questions that I felt were either raised or left unanswered in the Faculty Senate meeting. They are related questions.
a) First, from where does the perception come (which was mentioned by Jerry in the Senate meeting) that faculty are resistant to change and that that attitude was central to the ill feelings generated by the computing snafus? It seems to me that faculty are quite anxious to keep up with the technology in the areas related to their scholarly expertise and pedagogical needs. What many of us are resistant to is having folks with more technical skills than we might possess determine what our computing needs might be. I posit that those technical skills should be applied to supporting the academic aims of the institution, rather than dictating what sorts of hardware and software faculty should be using.
b) Second, a comment. Again it seems to me that lack of communication and miscommunication were central to the computer problems. I understand that all of this happened fast, during the summer, but I posit that we would all have been much better served by allowing more time, both for the technology people to assess individual needs and for communication with faculty, (sometime other than during the summer when many are absent) about the process. In a note to the above, I remember filling out a couple of surveys about my computing needs, but I see no evidence that my response to the survey in any way affected the decision about what hardware and software was installed in my office.
I would like to hear the provost and/or chancellor address these questions/comments.
9) I would like to add my $.02 to the technology issue--that topic definitely should be addressed in these meetings. The chancellor, specifically, needs to understand how unhappy many people are with the way that the changes (both with e-mail, hardware, and software) have been
handled. It's almost like certain people have been deliberately trying to create inconvenience and ill will.
For example, unlike many people, I WAS around this summer, so I took the trouble to back up my files on a jump drive (only to find out later that an operating system incompatibility made many of these saved files inaccessible). However, I assumed that the installers would make at least
a cursory effort to copy my files onto my new computer, because that is what has always happened in the past when my hardware has been upgraded. All of my files were in two folders. I even had a post-it note taped on my computer saying so. The installer did not copy ANY of my files, or even some of my programs, onto my new computer, so if I had not backed everything up, I would have lost almost 10 years worth of work in this change. Since then, I have had to make repeated phone calls to the help desk to retrieve programs and files from my old computer, so the tech support staff has had to waste a lot of time making up for mistakes that were made in the initial changeover back in August.
I also agree with the already submitted question on the lack of communication/miscommuni-cation. The memos and announcements have also been unclear. I printed out the memo on password synchronization, but the instructions make absolutely no sense on my actual office computer.
10) A number of departments have raised issues of legality in the functioning of Equity and Diversity in certain stages of searches. There have also been issues of complaints against faculty members, and even departments, in which the exact nature of the complaints has not been made available to the person/department involved, and in which a timely resolution has not been forth-coming. Did the “Hiring Committee” make any progress on the first question, and is there something that can be done to give equal protection to faculty/departments in the second question?
The guidelines and other materials provided to search committees are very useful. My only concerns are with materials dealing with the Deliberations & Final Offer. These concerns don't particularly affect equity and diversity issues, but because these guidelines may be used by faculty and administrators relatively unfamiliar with our shared
governance system, I think they should be clarified to bring them in line with Regent-approved portions of UWPF 6 and with the Chapter 36 assignment of the primary role in personnel decisions to the faculty. The potential conflicts are with the opening sentence of UWPF 6.02, which, in turn, reflects long-standing UW policy: "Initial faculty appointments may be granted only upon the affirmative recommendation of departmental executive committees, their delegated representative, or the ad hoc committee under 6.08(4), and the Chancellor of UW-Parkside." It would be desirable to incorporate this in the guidelines to avoid potential conflicts.
The ad hoc committee under 6.08(4) is relevant only in tenure cases. Under UWPF 6.02(1)(b) and UWPF 3.05(2), the "delegated representative" must be delegated that responsibility by a specific annual vote of the executive committee. That should be made clear in the guidelines, and language referring to the Search Committee and its chair presenting material to the provost should be revised to include the possibility that
a department executive committee will not choose to delegate that portion of the search process to a committee. The mere creation of such a committee is clearly insufficient to serve as such delegation.
The use of unranked lists in such cases is a relatively recent and rather dubious importation from the procedures for limited appointments, where search committees really are purely advisory. Te references to how candidates deemed unacceptable are to be dealt with, here and in the FAQ sheet distributed with the guidelines, are excessively vague and could be read as allowing the provost to appoint individuals who had not received an affirmative recommendation from the executive committee or its delegated representative, although such appointments are not allowed under UWPF 6.02.
If the provost should wish to appoint someone who has not received such an affirmative recommendation, they are certainly free to tell a department that they would be willing to make such an appointment and no other. As a past chairperson of our campus Affirmative Action Committee, I have been involved in cases where we successfully urged that sort of action when we felt that departments were turning down highly qualified minority candidates simply because they preferred another on departmental grounds. However, I would prefer that such actions be done in accordance with accepted procedures. The guidelines should therefore make it clear that as a matter of shared governance, both department and the provost must agree on a candidate.
12) For faculty, staff, or students who feel threatened (i.e. inappropriate comments, stalking, etc.), what steps can/will be taken to assure the physical safety of such persons? What plans are being made for alerting the campus should a campus invasion or any such general threat to the safety of the members of the campus community occur?