Faculty Senate Minutes, December 11, 2020

January 5, 2021

Purdue Northwest Faculty Senate Minutes

December 11, 2020

Via Zoom

Voting Senators Present: Ali Alavizadeh, Amlan Mitra, Anne Edwards, Anthony Elmendorf, Anthony Sindone, Cheryl DeLeon, Chien-Chung Chen, Dave Pratt, David Kozel, Diane Spoljoric, Geoff Schultz, Hairong Zhao, Harvey Abramowitz, Joan Dorman, Julia Rogers, Kenneth Kincaid, Khair Al Shamaileh, Kim Scipes, Lee Artz, Libbie Pelter, Magesh Chandramouli, Marianne Curia, Maureen Mascha, Michael Connolly, Michael Mick, Michael Pelter, Michael Roller, Mohammed Errihani, Neeti Parashar, Omer Farook, Pitparnee Stompor, Ralph Cherry, Robert Kramer, Robert Merkovsky, Sheila Rezak, Shengyong Zhang, Shoji Nakayama, Thomas Roach, Vanessa Quinn, Wei He

Voting Senators Absent: Colette Morrow, Maria Garcia-Verdugo, Angela Schooley, LaVada Taylor, Lin Zhao, Michael Zimmer

Non-Voting members present:  Thomas Keon, Chris Holford, Saul Lerner, Diana Underwood, Oriana White

Guests: 

Alan McCafferty, Bir Kafle, Catharine Olsen, Cathy Gillotti, Catherine Murphy, Cheryl Moredich, Colin Fewer, Daniel Wilbur, David Nalbone, Dietmar Rempfer, Elaine Carey, Emily Hixon, Feng-Song Wang, Jai Agrawal, Jennifer Williams, Jonathan Kuhn, Jonathan Swarts, Kathy Tobin, Lisa Goodnight, Lisa Hopp, Lizhe Tan, Maria Watson, Michael Bourgeois, Neil Nemeth, Niaz Latif, Nicoleta Tarfulea, Pam Saylor, Paul Hecht, Rachel Smith, Ragen Hatcher, Raida Abuizam,  Rebecca Stankowski, Richard Rupp, Rose Haite, W. T. Evert Ting, Yohlunda Mosley

  • Determination of quorum.
  • Call to order.
  • Approval of the agenda.
  • Approval of the minutes from November 13, 2020.
  • Remarks by the Senate Chair (L. Pelter). The Zoom chat will only go to the Secretary of the Senate during senate meetings to make sure that all discussions are open in the Senate. Amlan Mitra has recused himself temporarily from his responsibilities on Nominations and Awards. K. Scipes will stepping in to assist the committee.  The call for awards went out November 15 from the chancellor’s office.  Grades are due at noon on December 22, 2020.    The Faculty, staff, and students should be proud of how they handled a challenging semester.  The Senate would also like to give their appreciation to the staff and administration.
  • Remarks by the Chancellor (T. Keon). Keon stated that it has been a very difficult semester for everyone.  Generally, enrollment decreases 10% from Fall to Spring.  Right now, we are down 18%.  Keon yielded the remainder of his time to Provost Holford.
    • Holford began by thanking the faculty and students for helping a remarkably safe semester on campus.
    • Spring semester will follow a similar format as Fall. New student college enrollment is down about 21% nationally. We anticipate returning to normal operations in the Fall. We’ll be making a big move in particular on the Westville campus to move our operations back to face-to-face.
    • Resources are available for faculty sabbaticals this year. January 11 is the submission deadline to start the review process.
    • Annual evaluation process: The deadline for submission of faculty materials has been moved to March 12. A letter will come out of the provost’s office today with a revised timeline that gives faculty more time to prepare these reports. All colleges are encouraged to adopt abbreviated formats this year. Each college again has their own guidelines.  Leadership will be speaking with department chairs in January about how they approach annual evaluations in a COVID year.
    • Applications for the TIPP awards are due on Feb 28.
    • There will be a proctored testing center on both campuses this Spring. It uses a tool which allows a faculty member to go in and set up the time period that the exam is available to their students. Students will use an app on their phone to register for a time to come in and take a proctored exam at one of the computer testing centers. Training will be available for faculty.  The idea of proctored testing on campus is attractive to a lot of people.  The testing center will remain as an option even after we return to full operation.
    • EMSA and Academic Affairs have launched a number of strategies aimed at increasing enrollment. The Saturday advising sessions have been very successful.
    • InterFolio will now be used for submitting faculty teaching portfolios
    • Cherry stated that PWL will be receiving bonuses and asked if we would be receiving anything. Holford stated that PNW and PFW are in a situation with declining budgets and we would have to cut further to give bonuses.
  • New Business:
    • Curriculum Documents APPROVED
      • Chemistry, BSCH
      • Chemistry, BSCH, Concentration: Materials Science
      • Civil Engineering, BSCE
      • Coatings Technology
      • Construction Engineering and Management Technologies
      • Marketing, BSB
      • MET – 46100 – Computer Integrated Design And Manufacturing
      • MKG – 22100 – Principles Of Advertising
      • MKG – 32400 – Marketing Management
      • MKG – 42000 – Paid Digital Marketing Strategy
      • MKG – 42600 – Retailing Management
      • MKG – 42800 – Advertising Management
      • MKG – 42900 – Marketing Campaigns
      • MKG – 43100 – Media Planning
      • MKG – 43300 – Professional Selling
      • MKG – 43400 – Owned Digital Marketing Strategy
      • MKG – 47500 – Social Media Marketing And Branding
      • MKG – 48900 – Marketing Seminar
      • Organizational Leadership Minor
  • Artz asked R. Stankowski to speak to a request to retire courses that have not been offered in the last 5 years. Stankowski stated that Institutional research noted that 1600 courses are on the books that have not been taught since before S17. There is a need to clean up the course catalog. A list of courses that have not been taught since 2017 have gone to the department chairs. They have a week to tell the registrar which ones they want to keep. Otherwise, they will be suspended and deactivated, which means they don’t go away, but they won’t appear on the catalog or be active and they would have to go through some process to reactivate them.  Artz stated that the curriculum committee will discuss this with the registrar on how to bring back courses that have been deactivated.  The process for bringing back deactivated courses will be streamlined.
  • FSD 20-12 Revision of FSD 17-30 Senate Budget Priories (L. Pelter). Moved for action and approved: 34/0
  • FSD 20-08 Establishment of Senate Westville Committee (K. Scipes) Scipes stated that the charge of the committee is to examine possible programmatic and course options to help ensure greater utilization of the Westville campus. Scipes stated that Chancellor Keon vowed to consider all serious recommendations and promised to give written feedback to the committee. Scipes will have a report to senate by the April senate meeting so it can be transmitted to the senior leadership team. Scipes said that that the committee’s charge would be to the end of the Spring semester. The committee will ask for an extension if there is a need to continue.  Kozel recommended that the committee examine the cost and the benefits for both campuses.  Moved for Action and Approved:  31/1
  • FSD 20-11 Membership on Awards Committees (A. Elmendorf) Elmendorf stated there is currently no policy in place for either the population or procedures for the awards committees. This document addresses the population. The document asks that each college design a process for producing a member for the Awards committee. If there are only four colleges, then the previous year’s award winner will be the chair. If there’s five colleges, then the previous year’s award winner will be considered the member from that college. This year’s award cycle is already in process, so this document is only on the agenda for discussion.   Mick stated that if you have a member from each college, in addition to the chair, if all are voting members, then there would be one college that would have two votes on the committee and suggested that the chair might recuse themself.   FOR DISCUSSION ONLY
  • Discussion Items:
    • Proposal for Unification of College of Engineering and Sciences (CES) and College of Technology (COT) to College of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM (Provost Holford and Dean Latif) Holford stated that the proposed merger will provide teaching and research synergies. The restructuring will result in more than a half million dollar in payroll savings.  Holford said that there will be further cost savings based on shared resources and staffing.  The merger will leave the School of Engineering relatively untouched.  Technology will be reduced from a college to a school, and a School of Sciences and Mathematics will be formed. The merger would eliminate entirely three administrative positions including one Dean position and two Associate Dean positions. The net would be five for Associate Dean positions, but two of those would be repurposed as school directors and the functions of those positions would be consolidated in the dean and the director. The department structures remain intact. As part of the proposal there will be an increased teaching load for department chairs so that they would, on a semester basis, be covering 2.25 more FTE of instruction for the department. The payroll savings, which is estimated at over $550,000 would be used as part of the budget reduction or remain within each of the individual units.
    • DeLeon stated that she and R. Cherry met with Holford, who provided answers to EPC’s concerns. It came to EPC’s attention on November 20 that the CES faculty council had surveyed their voting faculty about the merger. EPC decided to give the exact same survey to the voting faculty of the of the College of Technology in order for there to be consistency between the two colleges. ED Policy will be meeting today to develop a resolution on the proposed merger
    •  ApproveDid Not approveTotal respondents
      COT12921 (2 COT did not respond)
      CES164965 (21 CES did not respond)
    • Elmendorf asked why there would be an additional administrative layer for science and math?  Holford said that they made a decision to create symmetry across all three units to provide advocacy as issues are discussed administratively. Elmendorf asked how Holford would respond to the contention that such a structure would simply make it more difficult for department heads to get what they need from the Dean.  Holford, referring to a proposal made by D. Kozel, said that when three smaller units are created, you lose the benefit of a larger unit and the administrative costs will go up. The goal is to consolidate some of the associate dean functions in fewer positions, but maintain many of the efficiencies.
    • Schultz asked if there was qualitative feedback or comments from individual faculty that filled out the survey.  DeLeon stated that in the COT survey, the comments were along the lines of not understanding how this was going to result in a cost saving.
    • Feng-Song Wang, chair of the CES faculty council, summarized the comments from the CES survey.  1. There is no input from the students. 2.  We would like to have West Lafayette campus looking into this merger. 3. The merger would be a threat to engineering sciences. 4.  It will not generate a savings.  5. The merger is about money and efficiency, not quality.  The comments were shared with the chancellor, provost, dean, and all CES faculty.
    • Kozel stated if you want to save another $250,000, just remove the dean. Just have three separate schools, or colleges. The convoluted structure proposed has a laboratory administrator in charge of things that they don’t understand. The provost’s plan has three directors in charge of different things:  One is in charge of research, one is in charge of promotion and tenure, and one is in charge of undergraduates. He expressed concern that directors will be in charge of areas that is not within their discipline. Furthermore, combining all these units creates another mega college where you have 36% or more of the revenue going through that college.  You will now have two mega colleges—CHESS and STEM.  The School of Nursing and the School of Business are about 13% and 16% of revenue.  STEM units would have a more direct line to the provost if there were three separate colleges (or schools) one for Engineering; one for Technology; and one for Science and Math.  Removing a dean’s position above those administrators would save another $250,000- $300,000.
    • Abramowitz expressed concerns about the cost of space for each college, which is part of the issue of the savings and actual cost to each college. He also expressed concerns about statements regarding equipment usage and time, and asked to see the raw data. He stated that the faculty were not asked how space is being used. Abramowitz stated that a 2019 space audit showed that the most designated space is given to the College of Technology and not to CES.  Holford responded that the merger proposal is about the consolidation of administrative positions and not space. Space can be looked at, but that’s not a central premise in this reduction.  It is an administrative consolidation, where the bulk of the cost savings comes through elimination of three administrators
    • Latif stated that every unit separately is losing money. The School of Engineering has generated less than 30% billing hours for CES, yet the payroll is more than 40% of the college. If you do separate budgeting, that will show that we are in a situation where the budget cannot be managed this way. The first option is where we can actually cut recurring budget. And that’s why this proposal has been developed.
    • Scipes asked what impact this merger will have on the students. Holford stated that there are no changes in departments or programs, so there would be no noticeable impact on the student body.
  • FSD 20-12 Amendment to the senate bylaws III. C. 5.4. Proposal for the revision Senate Budget and Resources Subordinate Committee. (L. Pelter) Pelter said the Senate budget and Resources Committee really represents the entire senate, and should be directly reporting to the executive committee. Schultz, Parashar, and Mascha, who are on this committee, were very much in support to this proposed change.  This proposal is a revision to the bylaws, as such it could only be for discussion and not for action at this meeting.
  • For Information:
    • Report on the Teaching Portfolio Taskforce (C. Deleon) The committee is in the process of drafting a COVID teaching portfolio. It is a draft of a document that is going to substantially shorten the material and have faculty reflect on their teaching experience during this COVID pandemic. Maria Watson is going to be working on getting InterFolio set up.  Training will be available.
  • Report from SGA representative (O. White) SGA wrapped up a four-day event called cram jam with extended library hours and an online version of it so that any student that didn’t feel comfortable coming to campus was able to still participate. Student Government has created 12 days of discounts where every PNW faculty, staff and student gets discounts at businesses around each of the campuses.  Local businesses and small businesses were intentionally chosen to re-energize the local economy.
  • Report from the West Lafayette Senate (V. Quinn) The senate conducted business to complete the population of committees and subcommittees. Two documents that address gender equity in the faculty senate were passed. There was also a resolution describing the burnout that faculty in West Lafayette are feeling during this time.
  • Adjournment

Committee room assignments: As has been the practice of the PNW Faculty Senate, standing committees will meet directly following the conclusion of the PNW Faculty Senate meeting.  These meetings will be virtual as long as the senate