Council on Educational Policy
2003-04 Chair: Edelgard Wulfert

January 30, 2004

Present: M. Carpenter, F. Hauser, F. Henderson, T. Hoff, S. B. Kim, P. Leonard,
D. McCaffrey, J. Mumpower, C. Pearce, J. Pomeroy, M. Pryse,
B. Shadrick, S. Stern, E. Wulfert

Guest: Dr. Bruce Szelest

Approval of Minutes: The minutes of December 12, 2003 and January 14, 2004 were approved.

President's Report: Presented by Jeryl Mumpower, Interim Vice President for Research.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:45 a.m.
  • Budget: There is a targeted six million-dollar increase in next year's state budget for the SUNY system. At this time, it looks like there will be no tuition increase.
  • Capital Plan: The University requested 325 million dollars for the Capital Plan, but the amount targeted in the budget is 79 million, which is substantially less than was requested. The 79 million will cover most maintenance for buildings. There is hope that when the budget is passed, that amount will be increased, of course, there are no assurances.
  • Enrollment and Admissions:

Spring 2004 Enrollment: Spring enrollment is slightly behind projections at the graduate level. This appears to be the result of a combination of the effects of the tuition increase, and programmatic changes in education and library science where students accelerated completion of degrees by December to meet "old" certification requirements.

Fall 2004 Admissons: Freshmen admissions - applications for admission are down about 3% from last year. But the quality of the application pool is up - meaning that the University is receiving more applications from qualified applicants and fewer from unqualified applicants. In fact, applications from "Group 1" students are up by 1%. (It is theorized that this decline in applications from the lower end of the spectrum is positive evidence that the word of the University's increasing selectivity is getting out to high schools. And since the University does not receive application fee revenue, the only real impact is a modest decline in workload and other University resources involved in the processing of an application.)

Fall 2004 Freshmen Profile:
For applicants: Average GPA and SAT is 1123 and 87.6 (compared to 1116 and 87.3 last year).
For admits: Average GPA and SAT is 1206 and 92 (compared to 1207 and 92 last year) with exactly the same number of admits.
For deposits: Average GPA and SAT is 1181 and 91.3 (compared to 1178 and 90.8) with about 100 deposits in, compared to 156 last year).
Presidential Scholars: Average SAT and GPA of admits is 1343 and 95.2 (compared to 1344 and 95 last year). Almost exactly the same number of Presidential Scholars admitted; 786 compared to 815 and 15 deposited compared to 20 last year.
Graduate Admissions: Applications for graduate admissions are lagging behind last year at the same time by about 21% (1,317 applications compared to 1,683 last year). This may be a processing lag (due to the unavailability of the system last week and it is expected that there will be a clearer picture soon).
Chair's Report: Professor Wulfert informed members of the Council that she and Senate Chair Pryse met with the President in January to inquire about the status of NanoTech Resources, Inc. This meeting coincidentally occurred two days after the Governor's announcement that there is a plan for a new College of Nanotechnology at the University at Albany. At that time, the President did not have much detailed information on either of these issues.
Report from EPC Representatives to URPAC: There have been no meetings since the last EPC meeting, therefore, no news to report.
Old Business:
Update on the status of questions formulated by EPC regarding the proposed College of Nanotechnology: Professor Wulfert reviewed the list of questions she prepared for Provost Santiago regarding the College of Nanotechnology and handed out copies of the questions to the members. She announced that she has only communicated with Provost Santiago once since the last Council meeting, and due to scheduling conflicts and travel, he had not been able to provide any information at this time. She will again communicate with Provost Santiago and she is confident that by the next meeting the Council will be given at least some preliminary information.
Review of "OurUAlbany" information to be made accessible to faculty: Guest: Dr. Bruce Szelest. Dr. Szelest presented the OurUAlbany site and reviewed the areas of interest to EPC. The purpose of his presentation was to help the Council make decisions on what should and should not be made public to a wider University constituency.
Areas reviewed were Institutional Research data, departmental profiles, information on the Research Foundation, and budget information. A lengthy discussion ensued on what data to make publicly available to the University community. It was also discussed what comparable institutions have made available and what information has protected access. Council members considered the possibility of adding firewalls for certain levels of data, although most agreed that it might be useful to increase transparency by providing access to information as this might decrease incorrect assumptions about the University. The Council members reasoned that information that can be obtained through the Freedom of Information Law should probably be made accessible on the website.
After lengthy discussion, it was agreed that EPC members would review the "OurUAlbany" website over the next month and at the February meeting decide, with the Provost's concurrence, what data and what type of information should be made available to the University community and in what form.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:45 a.m.


Respectfully submitted,
Jayne VanDenburgh, Recorder