September 4, 2012

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Approved 10-2-12
2012-2013:1

THE STEERING COMMITTEE
MINUTES
September 4, 2012
Board Room, Administration Building


Present:  President Simon, Provost Wilcox, W. Anderson, E. Bank, S. Carter, W. Davidson, S. Fletcher, G. Hoppenstand, E. Martinak, D. Moriarty, R. Spreng, J. Wright, J. Youatt; Others:  T. Curry, S. Lott, I. Shaya (State News)

Absent: L. Dillon, M. Noel, J. Powell

Professor Carter called the meeting to order at 3:15 p.m. with a quorum being present. 

The Agenda was amended moving items #11 and #12 to items #8 and #9. The amended agenda was approved.

The Minutes for April 3, 2012 and May 1, 2012 were approved as distributed.

President’s Remarks:
President Simon gave an overview of the Budget and planning for the year.  The BOT adopted a two year budget at the June meeting with a 3.5% tuition, which makes the University eligible for the tuition pool under the State formula. 

The President discussed some of the concerns regarding the budget.  Appropriations are done on a nonrecurring basis.  There will be a redistribution per formula which can change.  Intense discussions will occur regarding the formula and how sustainable over time.  The Governor made recommendations in January which did not match the recommendations of the business leaders group.  Inflationary growth will be the new normal.  President Simon stressed that we need to continue to look at the value of an MSU degree and think about the student experience.

President Simon responded to a question regarding the status of the Anti-discrimination/Sexual Harassment Policy.  The Interim Policy was developed after notification regarding the change in Title 9 in the Spring, 2011.  Training is ongoing and is being conducted on the new procedures with all Units.  There has been one year experience under the Interim Procedures and there have been two cases that have been conducted under the new procedures. Everything is being implemented and if there is a Committee that the Steering Committee identifies, Dr. Paulette Grandberry-Russell will meet and discuss the Interim Policy.

President discussed her letter to the community regarding reporting allegations.  The letter was viewed as a teachable moment.  The policies and practices have been in the University for a long time and it is good to keep it visible.  There has been a Committee on Safety for Children for the many University programs involving children.  The University has been reviewing the policies after receiving a complaint about picking up the children after a program.  The Provost indicated that policies and processes are being put in place for children’s programs. The President noted that the recommendations from the Penn State Report are being reviewed to better align University activities.

Provost’s Remarks:
Provost Wilcox gave an update on the BOT retreat which was devoted to one half day discussion on Undergraduate education, which included curricular changes, campus wide efforts and success on degree and graduation rates etc. 

Provost Wilcox spoke on the Integrity of Student Assessment recommendations.  Last year there were recommendations put forth by a task force to address the issue of the lack of clarity on the assessment of students in the various learning situations, including online courses.  The task force recommended the creation of a policy on assessment and the policy was implemented this past Spring, 2012, and it is now a part of all syllabi.  There were also a series of implementation recommendations, one of which was the development of a state-wide or nationwide set of resources for assessment.  The recommendation is probably not financially feasible.  Professor Youatt reported that the initial discussions regarding the integrity of assessment began in UCUS and the Provost requested Professor Estry to look more specifically at the challenges of assessment especially in the area of online assessments.  A faculty group is being assembled to look at what is being done nationally.  The Provost noted that all of the University Extension centers across the State have the capacity to assist in assessment as well as all of the Community Colleges in the State.

The University Research Organization (URO) was approved by the BOT at the July, 2012 meeting. Since that time a space has been rented at MBI for research space and several projects have been approved.

Provost Wilcox followed up on the Academic Calendar issues and summarized the current status. (See attached Memo)  The one remaining issue, unresolved, is whether or not there is interest in creating semesters of equal length, with the same number of class days in both Fall and Spring semesters.  Spring semester is slightly longer than the Fall semester.  He noted that if Governance wished to make a specific proposal on this issue he would be willing to review.

Provost Wilcox reported that the Provost Office over the years has not been diligent in the support of the Secretary for Academic Governance position.  Provost Wilcox acknowledged the work of the Secretary and the Office. During the summer the Provost, Professor Curry and the Chairperson of the Steering Committee worked on how to be more supportive of the Secretary in her role.  There was never a job description for the Secretary for Academic Governance so Secretary Wright developed a job description for the University.

Professor Curry reported preliminary numbers on new tenure system faculty at the University.  This year there are 76 new tenure system faculty compared to 63 last year and 49 in 2010.  There were 95 tenure system faculty who separated from the faculty since last year, so the total number of tenure system faculty will be some lower as a result of the departures.

The Steering Committee Vice Chairperson’s Remarks:
Professor Carter had no remarks.

Atheletic Annual Report:
Professor Kasavana, Chairperson of the Athletic Council, summarized the Annual Report distributed prior to the meeting.  (See Attached).  He highlighted the issues addressed in the Council’s deliberations which included the NCAA Reformation, the functionality of the MSU Office of Athletic Compliance, the MSU All Student-Athlete Survey Report and the Council’s subcommittee activities.

A question was raised regarding the scheduling of football games and if there is input from anyone from the academic side of the University.  The Provost indicated that the President is involved in the planning.  There was also some discussion regarding the adopted NCAA uniform auditing system.  Is this addressed and reviewed by the Athletic Council and where is the transparency?  Professor Kasavana noted that an extensive report comes out each year, comparing the Divisions and break down on operations, investments, ticket prices etc., which is reviewed in Council.

Academic Affairs of ASMSU Overview:
Emily Bank, Vice-Chairperson of Academic Affairs of ASMSU, presented an overview of Policy items to be addressed in Academic Affairs this year.  The Policies and issues identified included the following:

  • Grief Absence draft Policy
  • Amorous Relationships Policy
  • Intellectual Property Rights – reassessment of Policy
  • Preferred Name Policy
  • ASMSU Name Changes

COGS Overview:
Stephen Fletcher, COGS President, had to leave the meeting for class but submitted the following report:
Welcome activities: COGS partnered with Graduate Student Life and the MSU Graduate School to develop a new orientation program for incoming graduate & professional students. This year's program was primarily held at the MSU Union, with an outdoor picnic being held for the first time. The event attracted more than 450 graduate/professional students. Additionally, COGS and the Graduate Employees Union (GEU) hosted a tailgate for the MSU vs. Boise game, an event attended by approximately 150 advanced degree students. More social events sponsored by COGS and other graduate/professional student organizations are planned throughout the rest of the academic year.
Graduate Student Study Space in the Library: Over the summer, 2 out of the 3 graduate student study rooms in the library were converted into faculty office space. The manner in which this was done was of concern the COGS Full Council, who spoke with Cliff Haka, the Director of the MSU Libraries, at the September COGS Full Council Meeting. Mr. Haka was apologetic for the process that was used, but defended the decision to make the changes on the grounds of necessity. COGS will continue to work with Mr. Haka moving forward to ensure that the Libraries continue to serve the best interests of advanced degree students.
International Student Fee Increases: Over the summer break, and since I returned to campus in mid-August, this topic has been one that has arisen more than any other. The Increases to the international fee, which was originally a $25 per semester fee for international students and are now at either $75, $150, or $500 per semester depending on your academic status at MSU, have been the subject of 2 questions: (1) Why were the fees increased and (2) Where do the increased revenues go?”

University’s New Course Management Systems, Desire2Learn:
Professor Youatt reported that a change in the company responsible for ANGEL has caused the University to be concerned about the service to be provided and the cost.  Libraries, Computing and Technology formed a faculty committee last year to review other course management systems and a decision has been made.  The University will have two years for transition and the new system is called Desire2Learn (D2L).  There will be a presentation on D2L at the next University Council meeting.

Update on Health Care Discussion:
Professor Davidson, At-Large member, presented an update on the Health Care discussions.  There were two key recommendations put forth by the Task Force four years ago included that MSU initiate a patient-centered medical home and the second was that MSU seek some competition in the area of an insurer or third party insurer/administrator.  A request for proposals is out to invite third party administrators for health care plans that would be more congruent with the University needs for improving quality and containing costs.  See attached working draft on MSU Patient-Centered Medical Home Model.  An update will be presented in Faculty Senate.

University Standing Committee Chairpersons – New Initiatives for AY 2012:
Professor Carter provided opportunity for the Chairpersons to report any issues of discussion in their Committees.

Professor Hoppenstand, Chairperson of UCC, reported the UCC is beginning the review of the undergraduate course prerequisites, co requisites and restrictions.  This is a review that has not been done since the conversion to semesters.

Professor Anderson, UCFA Chairperson, reported the UCFA will be looking at the Long-term Care Options, Conflict of Interest Policy, Grievance Process Issues, Electronic Voting, and Post Tenure Review.
There were no further reports.

Faculty Senate Items Generated at the Faculty Senate Planning Session on August 28, 2012:
Following some discussion regarding the next steps related to the items generated at the Senate Planning Session, members concluded the Liaison members to the BOT will report on the Faculty Senate meeting summarizing the  five categories that members used to generate specific issues.  The next step for the Steering Committee will be to create clusters and out of the clusters develop a list of priorities for academic governance for the year.  

Draft Agenda for Faculty Senate September 11, 2012:
The agenda for the Faculty Senate meeting scheduled for September 11, 2012 is as follows:

  • UCC Report
  • Update on Health Care
  • New Business

Draft Agenda for University Council September 18, 2012:
The agenda for the University Council Meeting scheduled for September 18, 2012 is as follows:

  • Athletic Council Annual Report
  • University’s New Course Management Systems, D2
  • New Business

New Business:
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 5:05 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted,

signature

Jacqueline Wright
Secretary for Academic Governance

Committee Meeting Date: 
Tuesday, September 4, 2012 - 3:15pm
Committee Type: 
Minutes Status :