University Senate Executive Committee Meeting
November 24, 2003

Present: D. Armstrong, H. Charalambous, R. Collier, A. Lyons, C. MacDonald, G. Moore, M. Pryse, C. Santiago, J. Savitt, G. Spitze, L. Videka, D. Wagner, E. Wulfert

Approval of Minutes: The October 13, 2003 minutes were approved as amended.

President's Report: Presented by Provost Carlos Santiago.

The University is in the final stages of discussion of its enrollment plan for next year. We foresee little growth in enrollment for the next academic year and while faculty searches will be ongoing, their successful closure will be contingent on the budget. The search for the Vice President for Research has been postponed, the Vice President for Advancement search has not yet begun, and the Dean of the School of Business search is also pending. Regarding the Life Sciences search, there are three potential candidates: one is not in a position to move now, and the Dean is in conversation with the other two candidates. One candidate may come to the campus in December for a visit.

Senator Collier asked about the Presidential Search information memo from University Council Chairman George Philip, specifically inquiring about the finalists' names being made public. Provost Santiago responded that he was confident that the Search Committee would adhere to the published guidelines.

University Faculty Senate Report: Presented by Senator Richard Collier.

Senator Collier introduced a resolution that he intended to present at the next Senate meeting regarding the future of the School of NanoSciences and NanoEngineering (SNN). The resolution referred to recent newspaper articles written about the incorporation of SNN with private and governmental entities, the concern of the Faculty Senate not being apprised of new endeavors, and the future of the School as a reflection on UAlbany. Discussion on this Resolution centered on the use of the media for a collection of facts in writing a Senate resolution. It was suggested by the Provost to ask the Dean of SNN about the concerns, and to be clearer on the objectives of the resolution. Professor Wulfert noted that EPC has had difficulty in getting information in a timely manner on several of the research centers in the past. The Committee members agreed that this is a legitimate concern, but Professor Pryse suggested that Senator Collier streamline the resolution for presentation at the Senate meeting. Several members suggested that Senator Collier rephrase his resolution, simplify his language, and pose questions for inquiry rather than make assertions of fact. He indicated that he would look again at the Resolution before forwarding it for the agenda.

Chair's report: Presented by Chair Marjorie Pryse.

Senate Website:
The Senate website now has a column for "Chairs' Summaries" which can be used for a Chair's report prior to a Council's minutes being approved; the posting of chairs' summaries is entirely voluntary.

Senate Membership:
Senator Christopher Smith has resigned from the Senate.

Parking Proposal:
Chair Pryse and a number of Vice Presidents have received a proposal from two undergraduate students, Adrian Albus and Dan Lerro, concerning parking problems on Campus. After some discussion, it was determined that the proposal should be referred to Michelle DiDonna of the Parking Committee.

Next Senate Meeting:
John Wolff, Chief Advancement Officer, is scheduled to speak at the next meeting.

Status of the Department of Computer Science:
A question about the status of the Department of Computer Science was raised and Professor Pryse referred it to the Provost. Provost Santiago spoke about the IT Commons concept. He explained that about three years ago the Provost's Task Force on Information Science recommended the move of the Department of Computer Science to the School of Information Science and Policy (SISP). The Provost stated that this recommendation has not been acted upon, and that any decision to move the Department of Computer Science to SISP would require the Department's approval. Dean Joan Wick-Pelletier of the College of Arts and Sciences and Dean Peter Bloniarz have met and are discussing the issue with the affected academic units. If the faculty of the Department of Computer Science want to move to ISP, they will have to put forward a proposal for review by EPC, the CAS Faculty Council and SISP. Professor Wulfert reported that this was addressed at EPC, and that EPC was assured that any change in the organizational structure of the Department of Computer Science would occur through formal governance channels involving the CAS Faculty Council, SISP and EPC. Senator Collier asked if SISP would be the anchor school at the Harriman Campus and the Provost said it was always the hope that IT would become a hub for development on the land adjacent to the Harriman campus.

Theme Semesters in CAS: Chair Pryse noted that the Dean of Arts and Sciences has asked for help with Theme Semesters, and it was previously suggested that UAS have input on this topic.

Spring Faculty Forum:
Chair Pryse shared the topic for the Spring Faculty Forum as Sweat Free and Sustainable; the implications of those two issues for the UAlbany Campus. She has consulted with members of the anti-sweat shop task force and Krista Downey, who has developed an ad hoc environmental task force, and will appropriate faculty speakers. Professor Armstrong recommended Professor Steven Breyman, from RPI, who has worked with energy conservation. She also suggested talking about "migrant labor" instead of "sweatshops." Senator Savitt asked Professor Pryse to include part time workers as an aspect of sweatshop conditions.

Nominations of Faculty to the Presidential Search Committee:
Professor Pryse handed out information on the Trustees Guidelines for the Selection of a President, which summarized the search committee guidelines, the search process, and the selection process. She asked the group for ideas concerning how best to solicit nominations from the faculty and emphasized the University Council's request for diversity both in terms of individuals and academic schools and colleges. The appointment of a subcommittee to the Executive Committee for nominations was discussed, but all agreed that all of the teaching faculty members of the Executive Committee should be involved in creating guidelines for the election process. The nominations could be collected until December 5th, with a ballot vote scheduled for Monday, December 8th, immediately following the Faculty Meeting. The final decision on how many ballots would be necessary (if there were quite a number of nominees) would be left up to the Senate. Chair Pryse asked the teaching faculty members of the Executive Committee to remain for a few minutes after the end of the meeting to think about guidelines and also to decide on the best mechanism for soliciting nominations from the entire faculty for the ballot to elect teaching faculty representatives to the Presidential search committee.


Council Reports:

ULC - Gwen Moore, Chair.

ULC has set up a Transportation Committee to deal with pedestrians on Campus. The membership is looking into construction vehicles that pass in front of State Quad, and adding stop signs and cross walks on the campus. Professor Moore explained that a large number of disabled students live in State and there are safety issues there.

Christa Downey spoke to ULC about the Environmental Task Force. Members of the Spirit Committee (created by the VP for Student Affairs) would like to have faculty participation. The Spirit Committee is trying to enrich student nonacademic life, like fountain day and sporting events, to increase the students feeling of belonging. Professor Moore said the committee does not know how to garner increased faculty participation. Professor Armstrong said that one of the Committees of CAFE would be looking into interaction in the fall, and that it may well be interested in that Committee.

CPCA - Glenna Spitze, Chair. No report.

EPC - Edelgard Wulfert, Chair.

Professor Wulfert reported that EPC invited Dean Peter Bloniarz to its last meeting to speak about proposed developments in the School of Information Science and Policy. Dean Bloniarz reported about a proposal to form a campus-wide Information Technology Commons that will support discipline-based research and educational programs in information-related studies, ranging from information literacy to doctoral education. An IT Commons would share faculty, courses, research and resources and support programs in the sciences, social sciences, humanities, and the professional schools. It would have interdisciplinary and discipline-based IT-related concentrations across the campus. While part of the discussion at EPC revolved around the Department of Computer Science issue, as discussed earlier by the Provost, Professor Wulfert stated that the idea of an IT Commons also received extensive discussion. In general, the idea of an IT Commons seemed to be well received by the Council. Professor Wulfert stated that a variety of models exist but that the model of an IT Commons is followed by other universities too, and that it seems to be a very good idea.

GAC - Hara Charalambous, Chair.

A response to GAC had been received from Dean Butler of the University Libraries regarding the Electronic Thesis and Dissertations Resolution. The Libraries are supportive of the GAC's policy intention and will be forming a committee to examine and determine details for proposed policy and procedural changes. Mary Casserly, Associate Dean of the Libraries and GAC member will be forming the working committee. GAC has discussed the Career Development Center issue; the discontinuance of service is regretful, but understandable. GAC approved amendments to the new course proposals of SNN.

UAC - Joan Savitt, Chair.

UAC has been meeting every week. At the last meeting the restriction of entry into the Economics' Major policy was discussed. The Council requested that an appeal process be included in this policy and it was noted that this policy is applicable only for students admitted in Fall, 2004 and thereafter. UAC has two bills to bring to Senate: 1) the Elimination of the General Education Honors Program, and 2) The Dean's Commendation for Part-time Students. The bills were handed out and discussed. UAC has received the proposed revised English major and passed it on to committee.

RES - Lynn Videka, Chair.

The Research Council has established an Institutional Review Board Policy Committee, chaired by Professor David Wagner, and it will meet for the first time on December 11, 2003. The Council is in the initial stages of beginning a review of new research centers' performance.

LISC - David Wagner, Chair.

Christine Haile, the Chief Information Officer, is organizing an IT policy review process within her structure. One point will be academic input, i.e., who makes the judgment as to whether a policy needs academic review. She will bring it to the Chair of LISC if needed.

CAFE - Donna Armstrong, Chair.

CAFE has four ad hoc committees dealing with freedom of expression and speech: newspaper distribution: the Patriot Act: and official recognition of faculty groups other than the current mechanisms on Campus. CAFE has been meeting weekly.

Another issue under discussion at CAFE is the freedom of expression in the form of events. Professor Armstrong referenced last year's event that depicted large pictures of abortions, some faculty have voiced concern about freedom of expression, and CAFE is looking at how to better encourage freedom of expression on this Campus. Professor Pryse asked if they are talking about where to place these large items so not to upset others, and Professor Armstrong noted that being upset is not a legal reason to restrict freedom of speech. Professor Armstrong said that if the size is restricted, it must be restricted for all events on Campus. This issue is being discussed.

CERS - Bruce Dudek, Chair. Not present.

Bylaws Group - Carolyn MacDonald, Chair.

Professor MacDonald reminded the Committee of the Faculty Meeting on December 8, 2003 and that the Bylaws Group is encouraging attendance by sending out an email broadcast from Vice President Lowery to professional Staff. She reported that CONE asked if a phone message and email broadcast could be sent to all faculty.

Meeting adjourned 5:00 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Jayne VanDenburgh, Recorder