Transcript Senate Meeting
January 10, 2012
Ann Beth Presley, chair: Welcome everybody who trucked over here in the rain. I’m Ann Beth Presley, chair of the University Senate and I’d like to welcome you to the January 2012 Senate meeting. Please be sure to sign-in in the back. If you’d like to speak about an issue go to the microphone and state your name, indicate if you are a senator and state what unit you represent. The rules of the senate require that senators be allowed to speak first, after all comments by senators on an issue are made, guests are welcome to speak.
The first item on the agenda is the approval of the minutes from the November meeting. Larry Crowley posted the minutes and sent a link to all senators. Are there any changes, additions, or deletions to these minutes? Hearing none the minutes will stand as approved.
I now invite Dr. Gogue to come forward to make some remarks from the president’s office. [2:25]
Dr. Gogue, president: Good to be with you, glad you’re back. Let me share with you 4 items and I’ll be happy to respond to questions.
Number one, relative to the budgets, the first quarter of this fiscal year according to our folks in Montgomery is probably the best quarter that we’ve seen in 3 or 4 years. The word there would be cautiously optimistic, if it continues, no discussion of proration on the table.
The second thing I want to mention to you is we have a Board of Trustees meeting on February 3. There are 5 items from the academic affairs area, one is a proposed bachelor of science in organismal (how do you say that?) biology, a revision of a bachelor of science in agronomy & soils and establish some formal options, a graduate certificate program in accountancy, the renaming of the PhD in integrated textile and apparel science to the PhD in consumer in design sciences, and a proposed accelerated bachelors/masters program in hotel restaurant management.
Relative to Trustee selection, they meet on Thursday of this week, they meet from 1–3 in the Capitol, that will be the governor, two members of the Board of Trustees, two members from the Alumni Association. Their goal is to identify individuals that they will then interview. The dates for the interview have been set for January 18 and January 30 for the afternoons, the idea of being able to have individuals for various districts that are named and which they can submit to the Senate for confirmation when they go into session in early February.
Third thing that I want to mention to you has to do with the Provost search. We’ve gone through an elaborate process with a lot of candidates, did airport interviews, and brought 4 individuals to campus. I was provided with 2 names to work with and I invited both those individuals back and spent time on campus with them and basically decided that the fit was not right at Auburn at this time. So we will be meeting with that search and screening committee to decide what’s the next step relative to the Provost search.
Final thing I’d mention you is a lot of you have been working very hard on the SACS reaffirmation visit and process and I want to thank you for what you are doing, and say Drew, we appreciate everything that you’re doing and realize that we’ve got a lot of work to do to make sure we’re ready when SACS actually appears in March 2013.
Any questions for me? (pause) Thank you.
Ann Beth Presley, chair: Thank you Dr. Gogue. I’d like to welcome you to the new year. The senate office nominating committee is beginning their work, if any of you are interested in running or have a nomination for an office, at this point please contact any Senate officer. At the February meeting there will be nominations for Rules Committee members for the 2012–13 academic year. The term doesn’t begin until July, but nominations are in February with the election being in March. The Rules Committee is the committee that nominates members for Senate and University Committees. You must be a sitting Senator to be nominated you don’t have to be a senator when you finish your term but you have to be a senator when you are nominated. If you have an interest in running for Rules or you would like to nominate another senator you may contact the secretary, Larry Crowley or simply nominate yourself or another interested senator at the next meeting.
Again, a few reminders, all senator whether ex-officio or not have a vote and should attend every senate meeting, if you cannot attend please send a substitute who is not a sitting senator and the substitute has full voting rights.
Today we have 3 information items, Bill Sauser will present the first item on the Faculty Handbook clarification on instructor eligibility for deFacto tenure. [5:35]
Bill Sauser, chair-elect: Good afternoon folks, I heard it might rain today. We did a good job of working through some major revisions in the Faculty Handbook, particularly with regard to tenure and promotion and the chapters that had to do with it, but we found one discrepancy in language. We looked at it an thought, well it would be nice to get a sense from the University Senate how people would like that resolved. So that’s what I’m bring to you today for information. We will show you a couple of draft resolutions, one is in one direction one is in the other. We don’t have a dog in the fight, we’re just interested in knowing what the sense of the body is.
First, this is what was passed by the Senate earlier in the year and what guided the work of the Faculty Handbook Committee and you will see in yellow down there it says, “de facto tenure is clarified to only include faculty on the tenure track.” In other words we have revised it to make certain that only faculty members who are on tenure track would be eligible for tenure, that’s so individuals who are non-tenure track faculty would not be brought forward. The only problem is we found a discrepancy in the Faculty Handbook defining what those positions are. Any questions about this? Everybody understand what we are trying to do?
Well, under kinds of appointment in the Faculty Handbook it says, “except for the ranks of instructor, Librarian I, archivist I, these are tenure track positions.” Which indicates that instructor would not be a tenure track position and furthermore it says, “non-tenure track faculty includes such positions as instructor.” So when you read those sentences in the Faculty Handbook it’s very clear that instructors are not considered tenure track faculty, but we did find another statement in the Handbook where it says, “an instructor must be nominated for tenure or given notice of non-continuation no later than August 16 of his or her sixth year of service.” That’s a legacy from the days of when I came and others of us in the room, we would come on ABD, without having completed our dissertation, I came in my final year; we would be hired as an instructor maybe given a year maybe two years to finish it up and then would move into assistant professor and then be considered for tenure, but that legacy statement is still there. So we have two statements in the Faculty Handbook one of which says clearly that instructors are non-tenure track positions, the other that says instructors must be nominated for tenure. So we just want to clarify that and we have proposed two draft resolutions, and I wanted you to see them both. One says that they are one says that they aren’t and directs us to make the appropriate changes in the Handbook. We are not bringing these resolutions forward for a vote today, we just want you to see them both and I wanted to get a sense of the body as to which one you’d like for us for the Steering committee to bring forward. [10:00]
First Resolution, you can read it there. The pertinent language is “Be it resolved instructor are eligible for tenure and de facto tenure.” The other resolution reads identically except for, “Be it resolved instructors are ineligible for tenure and de facto tenure.” In other words we’ve got those two choices, that’s how to clarify it one or the other and what we’re trying to do today is get from your discussion, we could even take a straw poll if we wanted to, but I’m interested if anyone has comment. We wanted to bring it to you as information, get comment from senate members today and then next time bring forth one of those two resolutions as our proposed solution. So does everyone understand what I am seeking?
If you have advise to give the Steering Committee as to which of those resolutions you like I’d invite you to come forward and speak at the microphone.
The passion of this group overwhelms me, must be the rain.
James Goldstein, senator, English: I had raised questions about this in the AUP Chapter had looked into this, that passage you described as a legacy is actually a legacy from when the Faculty Handbook was rewritten to get off of the AAUP censure list so we would not come against a conflict with their recommendation on de facto tenure. My own view is that once we decided that the lecturers were not going to be eligible for de facto tenure I personally couldn’t see any rational for not extending the same possibility to non-tenure track instructors to be renewed beyond the six years. I think it could be possible and it would always have to be decided in the individual department and the college, I can imagine situations where there might be instructors who don’t want to become lecturers. The lecturer job descriptions can involve them in having a lot more of a burden than just teaching full time; serving on committees, other ways of expecting them to do service and so on, so it may be that there could be some instructors who if they were allowed to remain full time for more than the brief window that they are allowed now, in English we have some instructors who are part time who have been here longer than I have which is well over 20 years. Some of them might have liked to be able to be full time and would be willing to sign that statement saying that they understand that they are not eligible for de facto tenure. So I really can’t see a principled reason why there should be any distinction on this rule between instructors and lecturers. Once we’ve crossed the rubicon of the lecturers. Thanks.
Bill Sauser, chair-elect: Thank you James. Are there other comments? Well if I would this is non-binding, I’m just interested in a straw poll of those who are in the room, how many would like the resolution brought forward stating clearly that instructors are non-tenure track faculty. If you just raise your hand if you have a feeling about that. Thank you, we don’t need a formal count. How many would prefer to have the resolution brought forward that instructors are tenure track faculty? Comment James?
James Goldstein, senator, English: I think for purposes of clarity what we’re really being asked is whether they are eligible for de facto tenure, that doesn’t mean that they are tenure track faculty.
Bill Sauser, chair-elect: That is what we are trying to clarify. Those who are tenure track faculty are eligible for de facto tenure, those who are not tenure track faculty according to the statement we have now are not, we are simply trying to determine where instructors fall and it appears that the majority of you would be willing to at least consider the first resolution.
Herb Rotfeld, senator, marketing department: I’m confused. Because you are talking about people as instructors going through the full time but some instructors are people that came here who have not finished their terminal degree and if you said that the instructor is not part of tenure track then does that mean that the time as an instructor does not count as tenure track?
Bill Sauser, chair-elect: That is exactly what needs to be clarified. And the first thing we need to do is determine whether instructors are or are not tenure track and the resolution then states that it would go to the Faculty Handbook Committee and probably Promotion and Tenure (committee) to figure out what to do with those individuals who are instructors now but not on tenure track.
Herb Rotfeld, senator, marketing department: I don’t think you answered my question.
Bill Sauser, chair-elect: Go ahead Herb.
Herb Rotfeld, senator, marketing department: If they are tenure track then their time a instructors would count if they became assistant professors. If it’s not tenure track, it won’t. You are saying that you want this decision to be separate from that issue completely. Or at least that’s what you just answered. That’s why I’m confused.
Bill Sauser, chair-elect: I see what you are saying. Yes, if they are tenure track and they were brought in as instructors and are on a tenure track now with a clock ticking we need to figure out how equitably to treat those individuals. If the clock is not ticking then we don’t have a problem. Am I hearing you correctly? (cannot hear) Thanks, that’s a high compliment Herb. James?
James Goldstein, senator, English: The situation that you are describing of people who are ABD, didn’t finish in time to start their tenure track appointment at the rank of assistant professor are a special case. As I’ve pointed out in numerous conversations, what should really be the operative distinction is what the job position that they were the successful candidate for will determine whether they are on the tenure track or not. So if someone applies for a tenure track position as an assistant professor, but oops they didn’t quite defend their dissertation in time, they have been hired for a tenure track position with the understanding that they have a limited time to finish that degree or else they are not going to stay as an instructor, because that was just a fall back position temporarily until they defend the dissertation. So that’s a separate issue from the vast majority of instructors, at least in the College of Liberal Arts who are not answering a job for a tenure track position. They are coming in explicitly to be instructors in a non-tenure track position, which up until now has had a limited number of years that they could be full time in that position because of the de facto tenure rule.
Bill Sauser, chair-elect: Thank you James and thank you Herb, both for helping to clarify the matters. I think I’ve gotten the sense of what I needed so unless there is further discussion or comment we’ll bring most likely the resolution stating that instructor is not a tenure track position, and bring that back forward for a vote at our next meeting as an action item.
Ann Beth Presley, chair: Thank you Bill.
Our next item is about CANVAS, which is the system that’s going to be replacing Blackboard. And it’s going to be made by Kathy McClelland. [19:16]
Kathy McClelland, IMG of OIT: Good afternoon. Bliss, sorry this will look a little familiar. I like to take this opportunity and update you on what’s going on with CANVAS.
Just as a reminder, thanks to Blackboard’s decision to discontinue support and licensing of Vista, which is what we’ve been running for several years, Auburn had to pick something different. You might remember that about a year ago maybe a little more at this time I came to you with Jane Kuehne and showed you canvas and asked for your comments. It was approved, we bought a license for it, and it is up and running and it has been for quite a while. We will run Blackboard and CANVAS concurrently this year, but Blackboard dies it goes away, you can’t get to it after Dec. 31 of 2012.
Now, between you and me, don’t panic, we’ve got a systems admin who is very good about going in and finding lost things, but faculty will not have access to anything in Blackboard after that date.
Right now, CANVAS is in really good shape. It is up, it is running, it is authenticated, it is connected to Banner–unwillingly, but it is connected to Banner. Just as a point of information, should your faculty ask anything when you go back and report, there is a major backlog of drop adds right now and the system is being exceptionally slow in processing them. So if students are supposed to be in your classes in CANVAS and aren’t, give me to the end of the week please. And then call me and I will hand enroll them if I absolutely need to. We’d like to work some of the kinks out of the system with a pretty large load on it, and having the next couple of days to do that I would really appreciate having.
We ran a beta test of CANVAS in the fall, we had some volunteers very anxious to get into it and start messing with it and you can see the numbers up there. We did a very good shake-down of the system in the spring and discovered all kinds of little problems with it that we of course reported to Instructure, the company that provides CANVAS. Instructure is very good about listening to clients–if you want something, tell them about it. There is even a Web page you can get to from the help button from within CANVAS to make a suggestion for things that you would like to see. And CANVAS works pretty quickly on implementing the ones that make the most sense to them. That plus the fact that CANVAS users have the chance to vote on the things they would like to see implemented, so if you want to go in and start voting that will help us get the things that we are looking for.
One of the major issues that’s concerning us right now is student ability to upload files to CANVAS, right now they don’t have it–we’ve asked for it, go vote for it, okay.
The numbers on the courses and the faculty numbers we ran in the fall, I was very glad that we had different kinds of courses, we even ran some cross-listed courses in CANVAS and that worked out brilliantly. If any of your faculty had been having problems cross-listing in Blackboard, encourage them to move to CANVAS as soon a possible because faculty get to do the cross-listing themselves in CANVAS and it is really pretty simple. [23:28]
IMG is the point for support and training. What I have discovered is that a lot of you all just so anxious to get out of Blackboard, you’ve gone to CANVAS and started messing on your own and I encourage that. Please know that there is some online help. From the IMG home page there is a big banner that says “CANVAS is available,” but under that are two links; one of them is to the transition page which has all kinds of FAQs, questions that we have gotten over and over and over and the answers are right there for you. There is also a link to an extensive page of links to help files for faculty on the IMG home page.
Here are the numbers you are probably waiting for however. I waited as late as I possible, thank you for extra time Larry, to get you these numbers. CANVAS updates its stats every night, as of about 6:00 p.m. yesterday. I am excited to see 455 courses and all of those people in CANVAS right now using the system. This is a major leap for us, we didn’t have that many when we first implemented Vista, so I’m glad to see that. The 1,247 courses that are still in Blackboard, compare that to fall when there were 2,453 courses in Blackboard, that’s half. Granted it’s spring and there are fewer courses but that so few are in Blackboard right now tells me I’ve got more people in CANVAS. My theory is, and I can’t find documentation on this, that that 455 number is just the published courses, the courses made available already to students. I know that a lot of people are still learning to set up their CANVAS courses and will be publishing them later this week or even next week. So I expect that number to go even higher over the next couple of weeks. I think we’ve got a lot of people moving into CANVAS right now.
If you are worried about training, please don’t, I’ve got a workshop, had one today and I’ve got one tomorrow yet nobody is enrolled in it yet. Just today I posted another, at least 20 workshops going through the end of February. On the IMG workshops link we will be doing campus orientations for people who just want to see it and see how it works. We’ll be doing CANVAS starting from scratch, which is what we encourage faculty to do. It is a different enough system that you can rethink your pedagogy and really improve your pedagogy in some instances by rethinking how to present it to students in CANVAS. But we’ve also got workshops on how to move stuff over from Blackboard, which is possible and we have been doing a lot of that lately. So those are all available and ready for registration up on the IMG workshops link. Just head to the IMG homepage: auburn.edu/IMG and in the orange bar there is a link to IMG workshops.
If there’s time and you are interested I’d be glad to log into CANVAS and try to answer questions, but I don’t want this to become a ‘how do you do it’ type session. Anybody? Questions about anything having to do with CANVAS?
Not sure who is speaking: How easy is the transition of Blackboard courses?
Kathy McClelland, IMG of OIT: Real easy. All you do is click some buttons. CANVAS goes in looks at your Blackboard course–it’s been described to me as sort of a drive-by–looks at what’s there, copies everything over, sends you an e-mail and says what of this do you want (you pick what you want), hit a button, CANVAS says okay “I’ll tell you when I’m done,” and it processes it.
Now, CANVAS is organized much differently than Blackboard is and this is one thing faculty are going to have to get used to. If you are a folder user in Blackboard, you are not going to find folder icons and that kind of stuff in CANVAS, so finding everything once it is ported over is sometimes tricky. But we can walk you through that an in those workshops where we do migration from Blackboard we’ve had time to go in and look and find things and figure out how to tweak them if we need to, so I would really encourage people to come to the workshops. We sit there and do it and that helps quite a bit. But it is quite easy. Cross-listing is a piece of cake, and you can do it when ever you want.
So there are lots of features about CANVAS that I think faculty are going to find much more user friendly. I was teasing Dr. Witte and asking him if he wanted to testify today, I don’t know if he want to say anything or not, but he’s been wrestling with it and having great success. I’ve been real proud of him. Anybody else? Thank you. [29:10]
Ann Beth Presley, chair: Thank you Kathy. The third item is a presentation about the Energy and Environment Taskforce, and it’s brought to us by Chris Roberts.
Chris Roberts, taskforce chair of the Energy and Environment: Thank you very much, I appreciate being afforded the opportunity to come in today and make a presentation about our work on the Energy and Environment taskforce. This taskforce was appointed by John Mason approximately a year ago and it was put together for the purposes of developing a strategic initiative that enhances energy and environment research at Auburn. So our primary focus is in trying to increase the research endeavor here at Auburn in the particular areas of energy and the environment. Two areas which I personally believe are two of the biggest issues facing humanity. So it is a great opportunity for us as a university. Our specific goals were to; one, broadly promote faculty engagement and participation and to develop a strategic initiative that would increase the externally sponsored research for the purposes of driving scholarship, being here in terms of research. The taskforce membership was made up of myself, I was very glad to accept the opportunity to chair this taskforce, I’m in chemical engineering and I want to show you that we had pretty broad representation in terms of the makeup of this committee. It was a very effective committee and a number of the members are here today and I will point out those that I have seen here so far out to you. Myself, Chris Roberts, Chair (CoE), Kelly D. Alley (CLA), William D. Batchelor, dean (CoAg), Lori G. Eckhardt (SFWS), John (Jack) W. Feminella (COSAM) I saw him sitting in the back, Joseph B. Hanna (CoB), B. Graeme Lockaby (SFWS), Russell Muntefering from Ag but in this particular case he was serving as a representative from the (Senate), Steven E. Taylor (CoAg), Ralph Zee (CoE), and Carl A. Pinkert served as (Ex-Officio), thank you. I should mention that Steve is here today as well.
The first thing that we did was that we carefully examined a previous E&E review committee’s findings. This was a committee that was chaired by Marie Wooten, I served on that committee along with Carl, Russ Muntiferring and Kelly Alley, those were the 4 members that were consistent on the previous committee and the current committee. We largely agreed with most of the findings of that committee in terms of some of the opportunities that were afforded Auburn in these particular areas. Post that time, starting about one year ago we have now held 8 meetings of the Energy and Environment Taskforce. We were largely trying to identify Auburn’s capacity in these areas and what were some gap areas that if addressed would allow us to move further in these particular areas and enable some growth. We reviewed the ongoing research that was in each college. This was a task that I want to thank each of the members for being willing to roll up their sleeves and put some long hours in terms of really trying to understand what we do here at Auburn in these particular areas. We performed what I think was a very holistic review and we also put particular attention on considering the currently existing Auburn University centers, institutes, and offices that are already contributing into this area to make sure we leveraged strengths that we might already have in those particular areas. [33:21]
We found that we had some very truly cost cutting opportunities here at Auburn in these particular areas would involve a campus wide involvement. So we needed to make sure that the proposal put together would be a pretty inclusive strategy. So for instance we determined that recent investment in bio-energy has paid significant dividends here on campus in terms of generating new extramural grants, the investment the university made a few years ago resulted in about 30 million dollars in extramural funds here over the last couple of years. So that’s the kind of program that we want to replicate and move forward. We have many other additional opportunities in the area of energy while we are on that particular topic, for a minute, particularly in the areas of solar, nuclear, energy efficiency, and many others. So we feel like we can take those previous experiences and build upon those and continue to move forward. [34:17]
In the Auburn environmental areas, areas that we could pursue in terms of the environmental, we have many, many opportunities, particularly given our land-grant mission here at Auburn in terms of forest sustainability, water resource management, water quality, modeling, geo spatial, pollution prevention, climate–I’ve listed a few here that we identified. We delivered this report with some specific recommendations to Dr. Mason, who charged us with this. Upon receiving that report he met with myself and Carl Pinkert. We reviewed it in quite a bit of detail and he wanted to make sure that we talked to Dr. Boosinger about this. We had a meeting with Dr. Boosinger, presented this report to him and thanks to his recommendation he suggested that I come here today and tell you about a few of the recommendations that are on the next few slides. So I appreciated being invited to do so. [35:11]
One of the key things that we identified at this stage in our development is that we identified a critical need for a faculty led coordinating body to facilitate research so that we make sure we are inclusive of the whole institution. Key word there being faculty led. The taskforce also recommended the creation then of what we would call the AU Council for Energy and Environment Research. This would be a round table type council where we would make sure that we vetted opportunities and put together not only just the strategic plan for how you would go about this but making sure we did the kind of planning necessary, to make sure we have the resources in place to pursue this and I mean in terms of intellectual capacity, the right people working on the problems.
Some of the desired attributes that we want for this council that we hope for would include that fact that it would serve as a coordinating and strategic planning body for new initiatives in the energy and environment area here, that we would put particular focus on producing competitive responses to extramural funding opportunities. The joke we used in the committee a couple of times is that we are going to make sure we circle the wagons but have all the arrows pointed out. We are going to make sure we are looking for opportunities outside of Auburn to bring new opportunities to campus and this is important because the big push areas for the major funding agencies these days are in what they call ‘big science.’ And so the days of living on single investigator grants are diminishing and we’ve got to look for ways to go about larger, longer term planned projects and initiatives and we want to contribute to that. [37:02]
With that we’re recognizing that this committee or this council also has to balance the competing interests that are on campus so that when a solicitation comes to campus that we make sure that it comes to this group and that we put together a good plan for how we would go about that, taking into account that there are a lot of different people that might contribute. The membership would be open to associate deans, center, institute, office directors, campus faculty that would be appointed by the Vice President’s Office (OVPR), the Cooperative Extension Office, a representative from this group (senate), and so forth. We would work in a roundtable fashion and I’ll show you a little diagram of how we envision that here in just a few minutes. We would initially at least elect a chair and an executive committee that would help to coordinate activities with the Vice President’s Office until we got our sea legs underneath us. And we would anticipate that this would eventually evolve into one or two institutes, note the energy and environment, we would have to see how they work together with full time directors. That would be our long term goals to see this grow to the point where we would actually have two institutes stood up in these key areas for future funding.
So the structure would look something like this, where each of these groups that I talked about could be represented. Meeting regularly outside of their normal, for instance the ADRs meet on campus regularly, but this would be a meeting where they would come together with other center directors to expressly talk about extramural funding opportunities in energy and environment.
Interest and inquiries and funding opportunities would come to the table and our job would be to put together interdisciplinary collaborations, recommendations for resources necessary to pursue these things, make sure that we have working groups that would address specific areas, for instance is we wanted to stand something up to go after new areas such as the new nuclear engineering program that we’ve established on campus, that we have the right group together and then planning for some of these strategic initiatives. One of my favorite examples is the ERC and STC. I’ve served on review committees and site visits for the National Science Foundation for what are called Engineering Research Centers or Science and Technology Centers. These folks don’t wait for the solicitation to come out to pursue those grants. They know that these solicitations are coming out every couple of years, they are working that far in advance to get coordinated and that’s what we are going to need to do and it’s what I think we’ve been able to do with the bio-energy side of things under Steve’s direction. [39:45]
Some of our recommendations in terms of the activities that were previously associated with NRMDI that would be affected by the creation of this Energy and Environment Council would include the Center for Bio-energy and Bio-products which is directed by Steve Taylor, the Water Resources Center, which is directed by Sam Fowler, and the Auburn University and Environmental Institute, which had been directed by Denis Block until his departure at which point Sam Fowler, I’d like to note, stood up and was willing to take on that responsibility in this interim period until this committee was able to render these recommendations. The Center for Bio-energy and Bio-products was initially established with one-time funds and we’ve developed what I think are fairly unique laboratory resources of which we’ve leveraged to obtain extramural funding, I described that a few minutes ago. Our recommendation is to continue to support this center and that the Bio-systems Engineering Department should remain its host and its reporting channel should continue through the OVPR and the College of Agriculture and Ag Experiment Station as it is currently.
Water Resources Center, which is directed by Sam Fowler was established with one-time funds. I believe Graham Lockaby was the original director of that program. We recommend that it also continue and that the College of Agriculture and Ag Experiment Station continue to host that program. We recommend that its focus by on water management and that we continue to support this, now how does this interplay with this last bullet? The Environmental Institute was a long-standing institute on campus that had the opportunity to reach many different disciplines in the environmental area. Its leadership has been temporarily moved under Sam Fowler as I mentioned, he graciously accepted that as the Water Resources Center Director when Denis Block left campus. We recommend that the Auburn University Environmental Institute to be reconstituted. It’s an opportunity to hit at a lot broader aspect of environmental research on campus beyond even water. If we are to reconstitute the Environmental Institute then we are going to have to have new leadership and some new focus, we’re going to need important funding in order to be competitive. So we recommend to conduct an open search for a full time world class director of the Environmental Institute because of the number of opportunities that are out there in this area. This would be coupled with an open forum that we are trying to coordinate. We’ve used the phrase charrette, some of you might be familiar with the charrette process where we would hold a one-day workshop. We’re planning to do this later this semester in the environmental area for interested faculty. Many faculty would be expressly invited because of their expertise in the area, but it would be open to other people to participate in order to help us define the scope and the focus areas that we could then pursue. [43:08] And we recommend that the environmental institute report to the Office of the Vice President for Research in a transition period until it’s fully established at which point we would look for a logical academic home as is the case for most centers and institutes, but in this transition period until we get it up and going we recommend that it report to the OVPR.
So that kind of describes to you the functions of this committee over the last several meetings, again I want to thank (the voice dropped out). I’m happy to answer any questions you might have.
Joselyn Zanzot, senator, Landscape Architecture: (Microphone quit working) Basically she stated that the College of Architecture, Design and Construction was not represented on the Energy and Environment committee and that exclusion of those disciplines that look at the planning, design and construction of the built environment, from buildings to cities and landscapes, including infrastructures of energy and transportation, both its historic evolution and sustainable futures, seemed to be a critical oversight.
Chris Roberts, taskforce chair of the Energy and Environment: I’m glad you brought that up. In fact when I was asked to chair it we were assigned a committee and a membership, but in moving forward the first person we approached was in terms of organizing this charrette was Charlene LeBleu from your program and she’s agreed to be out facilitator for the charrette which we’ll hold later this semester. She and I have had a nice conversation about what we could include. So absolutely, point well taken and well heard. Any other questions? I’m happy to stick around after the meeting if anyone would like to discuss getting involved. We’re looking for people to roll up their sleeves and work hard with us on some proposals.
Ann Beth Presley, chair: Thank you Chris.
Is there any old business? Any new business? If there is no other business then this meeting in adjourned. I thank you and try and stay dry.