University Senate Executive Committee Meeting

February 2, 2004 (Continuation of January 26, 2004 meeting)


Present: D. Armstrong, H. Charalambous, R. Collier, C. MacDonald, G. Moore,
  J. Pipkin, M. Pryse, C. Santiago, J. Savitt, T. Turner, D. Wagner, E. Wulfert

Chair's Report: Professor Pryse informed the Committee members that she had had several communications with University Council representatives in the past week to discuss further the balloting process for electing faculty members to the Presidential Search Committee. Following research by a member of the Executive Committee, there appeared to be a factual discrepancy between how the voting process at SUNY Buffalo had taken place and the Chancellor's representative's assertions concerning how voting had taken place at all other SUNY schools. At Buffalo, only an organization comparable to UAlbany's Executive Committee actually participated in the vote. Therefore, the UAlbany Senate had indeed followed a more representative approach in its balloting process. Having been shown this discrepancy, the Chancellor's representative had retracted her position that the vote could not be certified. Chair Pryse then discussed a new proposal from Mr. George Philip, Chair of the University Council, and he agreed that simply reopening the election process to ensure that other than CAS faculty would fill two of the six openings on the Search Committee would suffice. Therefore, members of the Senate have been asked to reach out to their constituencies to encourage nominations of non-CAS faculty to fill the two remaining vacancies on that committee, with a second election of two non-CAS faculty representatives to the Presidential Search Committee scheduled for Monday's Senate meeting. The call for additional nominations allowed nominators to propose names for this second ballot until Friday, January 30, at 4 p.m.

The Executive Committee members have been invited to meet with representatives of the professional search firm that had been retained by Presidential Search Committee on Friday, February 6, from 9:00 to 10:00 in CC367.

University Faculty Senate Report: Presented by Professor Collier. At the last University-wide Senate meeting, the creation of new units in the SUNY system was discussed. There is concern that the Levin Institute in the City was set up without oversight by any faculty governance representatives. Another new unit mentioned was the College of Nanotechnology. Senator Collier reported that Chancellor King assured the University-wide Senate that there would not be any final decisions concerning the College of Nanotechnology without conversations with the faculty at UAlbany. There continues to be ongoing discussion on assessment which, in the future, is supposed to include members of the Board of Trustees and student representatives.

President's Report: Presented by Dr. Carlos E. Santiago, Officer in Charge and Provost.

Dr. Santiago briefly explained recent changes in University Administration and his new role as Officer in Charge.

Council Reports:

CPCA - Professor Glenna Spitze, Chair. No report.

EPC - Professor Edelgard Wulfert, Chair: Professor Wulfert reported that the charge to EPC resulting from the Senate's Substitute Motion on Oversight of State and Corporate Research regarding Nanotech Resources, Inc. has changed in light of the Governor's announcement to work with the University at Albany in the creation of a College of Nanotechnology. Specifically, EPC has refocused its efforts to clarify the relationship between the proposed new College of Nanotechnology and the University. EPC has formulated a set of questions examining the rationale and consultation process, structure, staffing, research and indirect costs, curriculum, graduate students, direct costs and overall implications of the new College. These questions will be directed to the Provost. The Provost will report back to EPC as soon as practical. A copy of the list of questions will be available to all Senate members at the next Senate meeting.

EPC is working with Dr. Bruce Szelest to finish identifying which budget matters are to be made public on the OurUAlbany database.

GAC - Professor Hara Charalambous, Chair: GAC is working on the charge to review new course approvals.

UAC - Joan Savitt, Chair: UAC will be looking at proposed revisions to the English major, and the revision of admission criteria for the University. It will be bringing legislation on admission criteria changes, and it is revisiting the issue of allowing seniors to register prior to the beginning of a semester for 100 level courses.

RES - Professor Lynn Videka, Chair: Professor David Wagner, Chair of the IRB Policy Development Committee reported on the Committee's progress. The Policy Committee has met four times this semester, and is charged to resolve pressing problems of faculty on how the IRB process affects their work. Provost Santiago thanked Professor Wagner for taking on such a time-consuming, major responsibility by chairing the committee.

LISC - Professor David Wagner, Chair: LISC has completed its work with CIO Christine Haile on the ITS internal policy review panel. The Senate at SUNY Buffalo has passed a resolution in support of open source technology and LISC will be dealing with that same issue sometime this spring.

CAFE - Professor Donna Armstrong, Chair: CAFE is close to a final draft of a bill intended to regulate placement of newspapers, student papers, and coin operated distribution sites on campus. Once completed, the draft will go to ULC for its examination. The drafting of the bill regarding Freedom of Expression on Campus is also in progress. Upcoming issues are: the impact of the Patriot Act on campus; how the Patriot Act will be specific to surveillance, the impact on international students, and the impact on constitutional rights on campus. Professor Armstrong discussed the possibility of discussing the freedom of speech and Patriot Act/constitutional speech issues in a forum setting.

ULC - Professor Gwendolyn Moore, Chair: ULC is continuing to address pedestrian safety issues on campus. Two other important new considerations will be those of family/maternity/paternity leaves, and a request to cancel classes on two Muslim Holy days.

CERS - Professor Bruce Dudek, Chair: absent; no report.

Professor Pryse discussed the reporting timeframe of reports from CERS; she has not received a response to the first charge of CERS this academic year. She is concerned about what effect this might have for governance and asked for the Committee members' advice. Senator Collier noted that the Chancellor wants a formal timeline process for misconduct cases disclosed and that this is a sensitive issue. There was discussion and Professor Pryse will reach out to Professor Dudek on the status of CERS.

Old Business: Professor MacDonald will speak to Professor Lanford about the resolution he introduced for the next Senate meeting; the resolution was tabled because of time constraints.

New Business: Professor Pryse announced the formation of a new committee, the Governance Committee. She noted that a majority of the Senate Executive committee had agreed via e-mail vote to allow the Governance Committee to meet prior to the beginning of the spring semester and the first Executive Committee meeting.

Governance Committee - report by Professor MacDonald. The Governance Committee determined that in the past the DOH/SPH faculty had not been considered to be voting faculty.

Professor MacDonald referred to the presidential search; she asked if University Council would seek faculty input before an interim president is appointed. Professor Pryse suggested that the Governance Committee phrases it as a question such as, what is the process for appointing an interim president, and agreed to contact University Council for their response.

Professor MacDonald noted that the Bylaws Committee had strongly recommended that the Chair of the University Faculty Senate have a teaching release based upon the workload of that position. Senator Collier noted that he will be reporting that on Monday to the University-wide Senate. Professor Pryse suggested waiting until the Senate meeting in March for fuller discussion of this question, since the February meeting is very full. After some discussion, the matter was deferred to the March Senate meeting.

There was discussion on moving Senate meetings to another day, preferably Friday afternoons. After some discussion, it was determined that the matter of changing the Senate meeting scheduled date and time should be brought to EPC for discussion.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:40 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted,
Jayne VanDenburgh, Recorder