Governance Council

September 21, 2004


Present:            R. Collier, R. Hoyt, A. Lyons, S. Messner, J. Pasquill, J. Pipkin, R. M. Range, H. Scheck, H. Strother, S. Turner

Guest:              2004-05 Senate Chair Carolyn MacDonald

Council Chair Messner introduced Senate Chair MacDonald to the Committee and announced that today’s emergency meeting was scheduled to discuss the role of the Governance Council with respect to the recently distributed Bylaws and Charter of the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE). 

Discussion with Senate Chair MacDonald:

Senate Chair MacDonald summarized the origination of CNSE (the Governor’s announcement at the 2004 State of the State address, the Board of Trustees’ Resolution granting an autonomous governance structure, and President Ryan’s April 24, 2004 letter to the Educational Policy Council).  She explained that the University Senate was asked its opinion of the autonomous governance granted to CNSE, therefore, an Ad hoc University-wide Governance Committee was formed in May to discuss the effect this new structure would have on other units at UAlbany.

In addition, the new Bylaws and Charter of CNSE were recently released and President Ryan has asked the Senate to comment on those by October 8, 2004, before his approval is granted. 

The Governance Council has been assigned the charge of reviewing the CNSE Bylaws and Charter to identify any inconsistencies between these documents and other University regulations and policies.

Council Discussion:

Professor Pipkin was asked about the status of the Ad hoc University-wide Governance Committee report.  He indicated that the Committee has been meeting almost weekly all summer; they are researching peer institutions and recommending models with respect to promotion and tenure, graduate affairs and curriculum and research.

There was discussion about the creation of the College by the SUNY Board of Trustees and whether or not that was done within the current SUNY rules and guidelines.  It was stressed that this is a very important issue that should be looked at by this Council.  (Professor Range and Professor Hoyt referred to letters they previously addressed to the Ad hoc Committee concerning the announcement of the CNSE and the autonomy granted it.  They will provide copies of those letters to Council members via email.)

Council Charge Discussion:

The Council members present agreed that the Council would like to bring to the Senate and President Ryan’s attention any inconsistencies and contradictions associated with the CNSE documents. 

Senate Chair MacDonald announced that the Bylaws Group will be meeting to review the CNSE documents for inconsistencies at a meeting on Thursday and invited the members of the Governance Council to attend. 

It was agreed upon that members will be ready to discuss relevant documents at the October 1 meeting so that a report from the Council can be presented to the Senate at its October 4 meeting.

Respectfully submitted,

Jayne VanDenburgh, Recorder