Minutes of the Auburn University Senate Meeting
Nov. 5, 2013
3:30 p.m.
Broun Hall Auditorium
Submitted by Senate Secretary Judy Sheppard

A full transcript of the meeting.

Senate Officers
Chair Larry Crowley
Chair-Elect Patricia Duffy
Immediate Past Chair William Sauser
Secretary Judy Sheppard
Secretary Elect Gisela Bushle-Diller

Senate Steering Committee
Don Mulvaney
Laura Plexico
Larry Teeter
Michael Baginski

George Flowers, Dean, Graduate School
Administrative and Professional Assembly Chair, Bryan Elmore
Dean, College of Human Sciences, June Henton
Dean of Library, Bonnie McEwan
SGA President, Harrison Mills

Senators by Department, Present:
Accountancy, Robert Cochran
Aerospace Engineering, Andrew Sinclair
Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology, Valentina Hartaska
ACES, Paul Brown
Animal Sciences, Dean Schwartz
Architecture, Jocelyn Zanzot
Art, Barb Bondy
Aviation Management and Logistics, Cliff Defee
Biosystems Engineering, Sushil Adhikari
Chemistry, Eduardus Duin
Civil Engineering, Cliff Lange
Communication and Journalism, Robert Aigne
Communication Disorders, Daniel Phillips
Computer Science and Software Engineering, Sanjeev Baskiyar
Consumer Affairs, Wi-Suk Kwon
Curriculum and Teaching, Jada Kohlmeier
Economics, Michael Stern
Electrical and Computer Engineering, Thomas Baginski
English, Hilary Wyss
Finance, Harris Hollans
Fisheries and Allied Aquaculture, Rusty Wright
Foreign Language and Literatures, Adrienne Angelo
Forestry and Wildlife Science, Gary Hepp
Geology and Geography, David King
History, Tiffany Sippial
Horticulture, Amy Wright
Industrial Engineering, Sean Gallagher
Library, Pambanisha Leilani Whaley
Management, Peter Stanwick
Mathematics, Dmitry Glotov
Mechanical Engineering, Dong-Joo Kim
Music, Matthew Hoch
Nursing, Iris Mullins
Nutrition and Foods, Kevin Huggins
Pathobiology, Vicky van Santen
Pharmacal Sciences, Muralikrishnan Dhanasekaran
Pharmacy Care Systems, Brent Fox
Pharmacy Practice, Wesley Lindsey
Philosophy, Guy Rohrbaugh
Political Science, Murray Jardine
Polymer/Fiber Engineering, Gwynedd Thomas
Poultry Science, Tung-shi Huang
Sociology/Anthropology/Social Work, Emily Meyers

Absent, Sending Substitute:
President: Don Large for Jay Gogue
Dean of Engineering: Nels Madsen for Chris Roberts
AAES: Scott Parsons for James Bannon
Provost: Emmett Winn for Tim Boosinger
Graduate Student Council: Heather Corr for Frank Sturm
Agronomy and Soils, Dennis Shannon for Beth Guertal
Biosystems Engineering, Anoop Sattinen for Mark (James) Taylor
Educational Foundations, Leadership and Technology, Tuy Won Hin
Entomology and Plant Pathology, David Held for Leonardo De La Fuente
Kinesiology, Mark Fischman for Leah Robinson
Psychology, ??? for Daniel Sventek
ROTC Air Force, ??? for Jeffrey Hemmes
ROTC Army, Mary Ledford for Scott Copeland

Absent Without Sending Substitute:
Debbie Shaw, Vice President for Alumni Affairs
Jane Parker, Vice President for Development
John Mason, Vice President for Research
Nicholas Giordano, Dean, COSAM
Dean, College of Liberal Arts, Joseph Aistrup
Staff Council Chair, Jennifer Richardson
Biological Sciences, Bob Locy
Chemical Engineering, Allan E. David
Marketing, James Carver
Outreach, Chippewa Thomas
Physics, Mike Bozack
Special Education Rehabilitation, Counseling/School Psychology, Jill Meyer
ROTC Naval, Paul Michael Esposito
Theatre, Chase Bringardner
Veterinary Clinical Sciences, Annette Smith


I. Call to order

Chair Larry Crowley called the meeting to order at 3:28 p.m., a quorum was established, and minutes from the Oct. 8 meeting were approved without correction.

II. Remarks and Announcements

Office of the President

Don Large, acting for Dr. Jay Gogue who was ill, discussed the two-part raises for the faculty. One will be a permanent raise effective Oct. 1, 2014. The other is a one-time bonus to be given on Dec. 6.

He also discussed the upcoming Board of Trustees meeting, where such matters as the campus master plan; an update by the provost on Academic Affairs; a Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology and Laboratory Sciences; changes in the faculty personnel policies and an update by the Provost.

Remarks from the Chair
Larry Crowley

III. Action Items:

IV. Pending action item:

V. Information Items

1. Drew Clark, Director of Institutional Research and Assessment, introduced Huron Group representative Andrew Law, saying there had been “a series of conversations going on this semester” about whether the Huron Consulting Group would provide an improved budget model for the university, since some issues make the current budget “inflexible.” Dr. Clark said that had the provost held one open forum on the subject on Nov. 19 and that a second one will be held on Jan. 15. Questions have been raised about the current model perhaps creating and perpetuating inequities between colleges and the challenge of student migration between colleges. The idea of a new budget model originated in a provost’s deans’ retreat in 2011, but the university is in the midst of a 12-week conversation with constituents.

Mr. Law then said that that the Huron Group has worked with 30 to 40 other universities and has been engaged for 16 weeks with discussions here. Problems being addressed include a 43 percent tuition increase, putting pressure on student affordability, and an increased need for facilities operations. A 12-person steering committee of four deans, “other representatives” from the college and a faculty member, Beverly Marshall, examined fund flows, who has authority to allocate funds and how they are actually spent. The committee then came up with a model that addresses needs versus tradition. Two models he discussed areexpenditures based on current revenue; and a decentralized or “incentive” model. Some questions, he said, are what are the different things AU can do to increase incentives and work flow? What are the implications for a new budget model? Does the AU approach to budgeting “tie your hands”? Why does the provost have few discretionary funds? He explained that putting a new budget model into place would probably take more than two years, and that it will take 6-9 months to decide what the university wants to do.

Dr. Clark emphasized that academic interests, not financial, will be the priority in the discussions, as will the university’s strategic plan.

Senator Andrew Sinclair from Aerospace Engineering asked if results from other universities Huron has worked with would be available. Mr. Law said a website for this information has been discussed and that deans and the budget steering committee already have this information. The steering committee has discussed making figures public, but right now “the fear is that putting some of that out there would create too much anxiety.”

Senator Rusty Wright from Aquaculture and Fisheries asked Mr. Law how many budget models he has helped put into place. Mr. Law said he had been in charge of 12 to 15 such changes with different outcomes. Some resulted in the firing of a president or provost; some created better collaboration.

Senator David King of Geology and Geography asked which budget the Huron Group is examining – the 9- or the 12-month budget. Mr. Law responded, “All moneys.”

2. Raj Chaudhury of the Biggio Center for Enhancement of Teaching and Learning presented information on the center’s student and faculty resources. Its main goals are to fit into the university’s master plan by enhancing student success, defined as retention and achievement, and e-learning, especially distance education; supporting faculty vitality with ongoing development programs and encouraging a strong environment for academic work; and enhancing graduate student professional development by offering training in research, grantsmanship and scholarship. The Center has provided a wiki-based GTA Survival Guide.

This year the center did about 60 mid-semester teaching evaluations, meaning that about 5,000 students’ voices were heard; it offers a testing center, a new faculty orientation and the Bredon Endowed Instructional Grant Program. It is also assisting the Teaching Effectiveness Committee; has begun an incubator classroom geared toward group interaction; and a cultural insight program to prepare traveling scholars for interaction with local groups.

Dennis Shannon, substituting for Senator Beth Guertal of Soils and Environmental Science, said that Auburn’s distance learning programs are more expensive than most, double the out-of-state tuition for such classes at the University of Florida. The programs aren’t competitive, he said. Dr. Chaudhury said there were no on-line degree programs, but the Strategic Plan does call for them in the future.

There being no new business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:35 p.m.