University Senate Meeting: August 30, 2022
3:30 pm via Zoom Meeting

This meeting has a Panopto link.
Please refer to recording for details not included in the minutes.
Presentations are available from the agenda for the meeting.

Attendance Record at the end of the minutes.

A quorum was established, with 57 Senators in attendance.

Mark Carpenter, Senate Chair called the meeting to order at 3:30 pm. The Chair made an opening statement welcoming the Senate members, introducing himself and giving an overview of the basic procedures for the Zoom meeting format. Afterwards the Chair introduced new members of the Senate Executive Committee and the Senate Steering Committee.

Approval of the June 13, 2022, minutes.
No objections or corrections were raised to the June 13, 2022, minutes. Minutes approved.

The Chair then invited the AU Administrators to make remarks.
Chris Roberts, Auburn University President made remarks.

In his remarks to the senate, Dr. Chris Roberts welcomed everyone to the fall semester and announced that the estimated size of this year’s freshman class is around 5300 students, similar to that of last year, although the number of applicants has risen dramatically. He said that he had visited various units on campus, meeting with faculty and staff learning more about the departments.
Dr. Roberts spent his last couple of weeks visiting various units on campus (9 so far) and was encouraged to hear from faculty and staff about their aspirations and academic programs. He said that these conversations help him more effectively advocate for departments and their needs. The agenda for the upcoming Board of Trustees (BOT) meeting includes approval of AU’s 2023 budget, which includes merit-based salary raises and market compensation. He then talked about the Board of Trustee meeting for September 16, 2022, includes approval of AU’s 2023 budget, which includes merit-based salary raises and market compensation. He shared that some facilities projects have seen an unprecedented rise in costs (inflation), which may require a re-evaluation of priorities. S-Tony Moss (Biology) asked the question whether this would affect the STEM -AG building. Dr. Roberts stated that he would further support its construction. Roy Hartfield asked for more information on Auburn University’s dealings (~500’000 in the past 2-3 years) with Matrix LLC, an Alabama communications company who have been the subject of numerous reports. Dr. Roberts promised to gather information on this.
The Chair invited Interim Provost Nathan to make remarks.

Vini Nathan, Auburn University Interim Provost Remarks:
The Interim Provost, Vini Nathan welcomed everyone to the fall semester meeting. She welcomed the new Dean, Jason Hicks, College of Liberal Arts. She announced that two further dean searches are underway (COSAM and Pharmacy). Hans Werner VanWyk voiced a concern raised by some in COSAM department on the consideration of interim administrators in searches for associated permanent positions. In response, Dr. Nathan mentioned the Auburn’s Administrator’s hiring guide, Sections 2 and 4 encouraged internal candidates to apply and suggests that sitting interim candidates step down before applying. She also stated that Section 6 allows for deviations from said guidelines in consultation with the president, affected faculty and/or the search committee, and senate leadership. She emphasized that this deviation is specific to COSAM and should not be considered the norm. She made note that Auburn has hired 130 new full-time faculty, 50 of which are tenure-track. The College of Forestry, Wildlife and the Environment plan to open a new center. She shared that two departments in the College of Business; The Department of Management propose to change to the Department of Management and Entrepreneurship and the Department of Systems and Technology propose to change to the Department of Business Analytics and Information Systems.
The Chair recognized a concern and question from Michael Stern. Michael Stern commented on wanting to get back to face to face meetings or hybrid meetings. Michael Stern then made a comment on the Interim issue of being able to apply for a position if the person was interim. He based his comment on a question that he had posed to the previous President, Jay Gouge. Stern then asked a question to President Roberts related to the question that Roy Hartfield asked about the company, Matrix. President Roberts explained that he did know about Matrix. Next Stern asked Roberts to comment on raises for the academic year concerning whether there are raises for special people. Roberts explained that raises are defined by the guidelines with input from leadership.
The Chair recognized Duha Tore Altindag. The question raised was a concern that President Roberts reports to General Burgess after seeing an email that showed an organizational scheme where the President and others reports to the Vice President. President Roberts said that he would take a look at this mistaken statement
The Chair recognized Liliana Stern, S-Dept. of Economics. Liliana Stern’s question was to Interim Provost Nathan about whether she could make a deviation from the guidelines in reference to the Deans search. Zachary Schultz, S-Dept. of History, said Line of Order of the decorum and that the question posed by Liliana Stern was personal. The Chair asked for the question to be rephrased and Liliana Stern mentioned that she did not know any other way to rephrase the question. Roy Hartfield commented on the discussion and asked if the Provost wanted to make more comments to the question. Interim Provost Nathan responded to the question. The faculty handbook has guidelines that are recommendations. The guidelines support the President and the Provost. The guidelines allow for deviations. If the President supports the deviation then the Provost can carry out the deviation.

Information Item:
Guest Dr. Katie Boyd, Director of Academic Insight gave a presentation on the QEP, Quality Enhancement Plan. A QEP is a designed action derived from existing planning and evaluation processes, that addresses a well-defined issue. Auburn will focus on career outcomes, specifically first destination outcome success (did they get a job) and quality (salary, alignment to major, or satisfaction). This proposal will show Auburn’s quality and enhancement during the reaffirmation cycle. The QEP is a requirement for accreditation. This proposal will be submitted in January 2023. It will be reviewed during the onsite visit at the beginning of February and March. The proposal will focus on career outcomes. Katie ended her presentation to allow for questions.

The Chair asked for questions and recognized Liliana Stern, S-Economics. Liliana Stern spoke about it being good to focus on outcomes but to also focus on the quality of instruction that is provided for students. She then said that she did not have a question but a concern.
The Chair asked if Katie Boyd would like to respond. Boyd said that she could not speak to instructor specific items but can say that units can choose to focus on curricular innovation associated with career outcomes and student success.

Action Item: None currently

The Chair said that in reference to meeting via zoom or face-to-face, it was left off the agenda by mistake. There should have been a vote about this issue and that in subsequent meeting there will be a vote.

New Business: None currently

Adjournment: Mark Carpenter, Chair adjourned the meeting at 4:45 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted
L. Octavia Tripp
University Secretary

Attendance for Senate Mtg. August 30, 2022


Senate Officers

Senate Officers

Mark Carpenter Chair
Lisa Kensler Chair-elect
Lucretia (Octavia) Tripp Secretary
Todd Steury Immediate Past-Chair

Absent without substitute:
Linda Gibson-Young Secretary-elect

Kelli Shomaker VP for Bus & Fin & CFO
Paul Patterson Dean, College of Agriculture
George Flowers Dean, Graduate School
Bobby Woodard SVP for Student Affairs
Jeffrey Fairbrother Dean, College of Education
Janaki Alavalapati Dean, College of Forestry, Wildlife, and the Environment
James Weyhenmeyer VP Research
Greg Newschwander Dean, College of Nursing
Calvin Johnson Dean, College of Veterinary Medicine

Ex-Officio Members
Vini Nathan Interim Provost
Shali Zhang Dean of Libraries
Jake Haston SGA President
Ashley Reid Staff Council Chair
Evelyn Hunter Steering Committee
Danilea Werner Steering Committee
Robert Cochran Steering Committee

Absent without substitute:
Makeda Nurradin GSC President
Clint Lovelace A&P Assembly Chair
Robert Norton Steering Committee

Senators by Departments
Roy Hartfield Aerospace Engineering
Valentina Hartarska Agricultural Economics & Rural Sociology
Jacek Wower Animal Sciences
Vinicia Biancardi Anatomy, Physiology & Pharmacology
Kevin Moore Architecture
Lauren Woods Art
James Birdsong Aviation
Anthony Moss Biological Sciences
David Blersch Biosystems Engineering
Mark Tatum Building Sciences
Bryan Beckingham Chemical Engineering
Wei Zhan Chemistry
J. Brian Anderson Civil Engineering
Kevin Smith Communication and Journalism
Peter Weber Consumer & Design Sciences
David Han Crop, Soil, and Enviromental Sciences
Christine (Chris) Schnittka Curriculum & Teaching
Murali Dhanasekaran Drug Discovery and Development
Liliana Stern Economics
Andrew Pendola Educational Foundations, Leadership & Technology
Michael Baginski Electrical & Computer Engineering
Sunny Stalter-Pace English
Damion McIntosh Finance
Nathan Whelan Fisheries & Allied Aquaculture
Zhaofei (Joseph) Fan Forestry, Wildlife and the Environment
David King Geology & Geography
Kimberly Garza Health Outcomes Research and Policy
Zachary Schulz History
Diana Samek Human Development & Family Studies
Christopher (Brooks) Mobley Kinesiology
Kasia Leousis Library
Liesl Wesson Management
Jeremy Wolter Marketing
Hans Werner van Wyk Mathematics and Statistics
Sabit Adanur Mechanical Engineering
Lee Johnson Music
Chris Martin Nursing
Clark Danderson Nutrition, Dietetics, & Hospitality Mgmt.
David Mixson Outreach
Lena McDowell Pharmacy Practice
Jennifer Lockhart Philosophy
Luca Guazzotto Physics
Peter White Political Science
Amit Morey Poultry Science
Alejandro A. Lazarte Psychology
Rebecca Curtis Special Ed. Rehab. Counseling/School Psych
David Strickland Supply Chain Management
Regina Gramling Systems and Technology
LTC, Laura Fryar ROTC Army
Janice Clifford Socio/Anthro/Social Work
Adrienne Wilson Theatre
Robert Cole Veterinary Clinical Sciences
Zachary Zuwiyya World Lang & Literatures

Absent with substitute representing Senator:
Edgar Vinson sub for Elina Coneva Horticulture
Shea Tillman sub for Ben Bush Industrial Design

Absent without substitute representing Senator:
Elizabeth (Lisa) Miller Accountancy
Mary (Molly) Gregg ACES
Shehenaz Shaik Computer Science & Software Engineering
John Beckmann Entomology & Plant Pathology
Peter Christopherson Pathobiology
Nancy Haak Speech Language and Hearing Sciences
LTC, Michael Quinn ROTC Air Force
Captain, Matthew Roberts ROTC Naval
Rich Sesek Industrial and Systems Engineering