Senate Steering Meeting
November 08, 2022
3:30 pm
Via Zoom

Present: Mark Carpenter (Chair), Daniel Svyantek (Immediate Past Chair), L. Octavia Tripp (Secretary), Lisa Kensler (Chair-Elect), Linda Gibson-Young (Secretary – Elect), Vini Nathan (Interim Provost), Robert Norton, Arianne Gaetano (substituting for Danilea Werner), Robert Cochran.
Absent - Evelyn Hunter

Senate Chair, Mark Carpenter called the meeding to order at 3:30 pm.

Approval of Steering Minutes from October 11, 2022:
The minutes were approved with no correction(s).
Mark Carpenter (chair) welcomed everyone and began the meeting with the first speaker Norman Godwin on behalf of Karen Battye.

1st Presenter- Norman Godwin, for Karen Battye
Norm spoke on Academic Policy Updates and  Calendar.

He spoke briefly about a project that his office has started to refresh our academic policies.

  1. How students and staff  navigate the various processes associated with policy.
  2. How do to withdraw from a class?
  3. How do I do an incomplete?
  4. How do I, uh request authority for an overload for my classes?

The new policies are trying to create a more user friendly, understandable, clear set of policies, processes, and communications to students and faculty alike.
So we've got a committee that's doing that ad hoc committee is led by Beth Yarborough.
The committee will make revisions to processes or to policies.
Mark Carpenter (chair) - Asked for any questions in relations to the information presented by Norm Godwin. There were no questions.

Norman Godwin-

He went on to give information on the Academic Calendar fall 2023 calendar with a start date of the 14th, 15th or 16th.  Norm then began his slide presentation. He addressed the concerns as to how the fall date would affect the finals in December.  L. O. Tripp asked for clarification on two upcoming dates as well.  Godwin presented two calendar versions for comparison. Lisa Kensler asked will there be a motion after Norms presentation about the proposed calendar changes? Mark stated he would be adding it to the agenda. 

Mark Carpenter (chair) asked if there were any other questions. 
Octavia Tripp asked about two dates in June on the summer calendar during summer classes.  Norm clarified that those days were for exams during the mini-mester.  Norm did agree that some clarification needed to be provided for students to clearly understand the purpose of the dates on the calendar during the summer/mini-mester. 

 2nd Presenter - Melody Russell
Melody Russell reviewed her presentation for the Senate Meeting.  She shared the plan to recognize and honor individuals, teams, departments, and units within the college, university committees, and university organizations across campus that have demonstrated exemplary achievements to advance DEI goals and initiatives. The DEI committee is looking to present a $10,000 to the recipient of the honor.  The funding will be provided by the office of the provost. 

3rd Preseter- Jada Kohlmeier
She gave an explanation on Distinguished Auburn Professor.  She asked that those present help her anticipate questions related to her presentation.  Jada explained this would be creating a rank above Professor.  This position has been in the works since 2021 and now the committee is moving forward.  Other Research One Institutions comparisons have been part of the preparation process.  The University promotion and Tenure committee to be involved at some level. Lisa questioned the purpose of the new position; was it a type of award, accolade, incentive or motivator?  Jada clarified that it is an elevated  position above Full Professor. 
Vini Nathan (interim provost)  further articulated this position as a progression of a Research One Institution the faculty hierarchy. 
Linda Gibson-Young expressed concern that hurriedly bringing this issue up at the end of the year was a concern versus waiting until January.  She noted concern for the stress levels of faculty and staff. 
Robert Norton commented this should be used as a rank at Auburn and not as a recruitment tool. 

4th Presenter - L. O. Tripp
Faculty Athletic Representative (FAR)
Discussed and updated on the progress of the process of selection for the FAR, gave upcoming steps to expect.  The upcoming interviews would begin on November 10, 2022.
Bob Cochran - asked that the nominees’ department be stated or listed once the nominations are made public.
Linda Gibson-Young asked would volunteers be needed to participate in the interviews.  Mark (chair) clarified that the rules and executive committee would be conducting the interviews.  He went on to explain that Octavia had already communicated this information to the Rules committee members. 
Interim Provost Vini Nathan asked Mark to make sure the interviewees were made aware that there may have additional interviews beyond the initial ones. 
With no other presenters or topics to be presented Mark Carpenter (chair) adjourned the meeting at 4:51 p.m.