Transcript Senate Meeting
November 14, 2017
Daniel Svyantek, Chair: Welcome to the November 14th meeting of the University Senate. This is our fourth meeting of the 2017-18 academic year.
First we need to establish a quorum. We have 86 Senators in the Senate and we need 44 for a quorum. Let the record show that we have 45 present so a quorum is established.
I now call the meeting to order.
I would like to remind you of some basic procedures for the Senate meeting.
First, if you are a senator or a substitute for a senator please be sure you sign in onto the sheet at the top of the room.
Second, for senators and guests let me explain the Senate rules about speaking. If you’d like to speak about an issue or ask a question please go to the microphone on either side aisle. When it is your turn, state your name and whether or not you are a senator and the unit you represent. The rules of the Senate require that senators or substitute senators be allowed to speak first and then after they are done guests are welcome to speak.
The agenda today was set by the Senate Steering Committee and posted on the Web site in advance, it’s now up on the screen.
The first order of business is to approve the minutes for the meeting of October 17, 2017. Those minutes have been posted on the Web site. Are there any additions, changes, or corrections to the minutes? Hearing none, do I have a motion to approve the minutes? Do I have a second? All in favor of approving the minutes say aye please.
Daniel Svyantek, Chair: Opposed? [no response] The minutes are approved. Thank you.
The President, Provost, and Associate Provosts are away from campus and cannot attend the meeting.
I now have a few remarks for the Senate. I would to introduce the officers of the Senate and our administrative assistant. James Goldstein is the immediate past chair, Michael Baginski is the chair-elect, Donald Mulvaney is the secretary this year, and Beverly Marshall is the secretary-elect. James Witte is our Parliamentarian. Finally, our administrative assistant is Laura Kloberg.
I must apologize. There was a perfect storm of issues which lead to delays and missing people for this meeting. Therefore, some information and potential pending action items are not able to be presented at this time. This means that this meeting has a short and brief agenda.
I can only take solace in what Shakespeare wrote in Richard III – “Tis better to be brief than tedious”.
First, I would like to thank Don Mulvaney. Don recommended that we begin a new process in which we ask for input from individuals before meetings are held. Hopefully, you read the announcement for this meeting. In it was the statement “Senate leadership will be launching a "What's On Your Mind" process whereby senators are encouraged to submit ideas for discussion topics, offer shared concerns, make suggestions and/or levy requests from Senate leadership.” Our goal is to be more proactive in the work of the Senate. And to keep in touch with what is important to the faculty and staff personnel of the university.
We are still in the process of working out the mechanics of this for people wishing to provide suggestions. After the fact, we realized that there may be issues of anonymity and confidentiality which need to be addressed particularly for those with individual level issues.
I will note, however, that I have already received two such inputs from a group of individuals that the Senate will be discussing in Spring, 2018 with appropriate units on campus. I will describe this more in the next portion of my remarks.
Also, Donna Brazile [and Ann Compton] will speak on November 28. She [They] will be the last speaker[s] in the Fall Critical Conversation Series.
This is near the halfway point of the academic year and, therefore, the halfway point of my and Don’s term of office. I wanted to assess where we will be going in the Spring, 2018. Therefore, I went through the items we already have and came up with a brief preview of what we, the Senate leadership and Senate, will address in Spring 2018.
One thing I have discovered is that a one-year term is short and things one chair starts will have to be finished by later Senate leaders. Hopefully, this will not scare Mike (Baginski) too much.
Working with the new President and Provost
Policy on Evaluation of Transfer Credit (International)
Revisions to Faculty Handbook – Timely Feedback
Possible revisions to Faculty Handbook in other areas
After-hours parking survey (and other types of parking availability)
Scholarship Incentive Program 2.0
Guidelines for Understanding and Evaluating Research Impact
Behavioral Science Research at AU
Title IX and Harassment—Responsibilities of Employees
Committee on Intercollegiate Athletics
Forum on Senate and Senatorial roles
New Business (often related to individual issues)
I am not sure if I have been brief but hopefully not too tedious! Are there any questions?
Question regarding the submission of ideas and how to keep them anonymous.
Daniel Svyantek, Chair: The people who have contacted us have either contacted either Don directly or me. Probably we are going to work out something to keep it more anonymous and confidential, if people want that.
Another question. Could not hear–not at a microphone
Daniel Svyantek, Chair: I don’t know what it will be yet but we are working on thinking about that.
We have two information items today.
The first information concerns an update on the after-hours parking survey the Senate sent out on November 7. This survey was open till November 13. I turn the floor over to our secretary, Don Mulvaney Don will describe where we are in this process.
Donald Mulvaney, Secretary: First I want to say thanks to all the faculty because this is a very positive perspective. We had over 350 faculty that participated in the After Hours Faculty Survey. Where we are at this point is process, we want to make sure we interact with Parking and talk about some of the results and see where that takes us before we completely unfold all the data. What I would say is that it is indicitative that there are a lot of faculty that have interest in after hours parking arrangements. I think that’s a good result of the survey.
The other thing I might add as a result of this survey is it prompted some additional questions, comments and it may even lead us in some other directions that will be a quest to improve parking arrangements.
That’s the report. If there are any questions, I can take those.
Daniel Svyantek, Chair: Our second information item is a brief update of the Board of Trustees actions taken on November 10.
First, Bill Hardgrave, Dean of the College of Business, was named as our new provost. He will begin as Provost on January 1, 2018. The Senate hopes to work with him and continue the tradition of shared governance we have developed over the last decade or so.
Second, a new university general counsel was appointed. Jaime Hammer will begin January 8, 2018. Her area of specialty is in higher education law. She is coming to Auburn from the University of Oklahoma.
Third, athletic issues were raised. Dr. Leath noted that he intends to move as quickly as possible on hiring a new athletic director for Auburn. This search will be national. One positive thing I saw in the athletic issues that were raised at the Board of Trustees was that money allocated for new construction efforts for women’s sports was equal, if not more, than that allocated to men’s sports. They are trying to catch up in that area.
Are there any questions or comments on the Board of Trustees meeting?
That concludes our formal agenda for today.
Is there any unfinished business? Hearing none, is there any new business? Hearing none, I now adjourn the meeting. [14:06]