Faculty Senate Minutes, August 18, 2023

October 29, 2023

Faculty Senate Minutes, August 18, 2023

10:00 AM-12:00 PM: Hammond – Gyte 103


Voting Members Present:
Ali Alavizadeh, Lee Artz, Gokarna Aryal, Scott Bates, Shreya Bhandari, Karen Bishop Morris, Karen Covington, Mary Didelot, Joan Dorman, Masoud Fathizadeh, Rob Hallock, Wei He, Shontrai Irving, Meden Isaac-Lam, Tae-Hoon Kim, Dave Kozel, Roger Kraft, Bob Kramer, Yun Liu , Meghan McGonigal-Kenney, Robert Merkovsky, David Nalbone, Sheila Rezak, Pam Saylor, Michelle Spaulding, Diane Spoljoric, George Stefanek, Kathy Tobin, Kelly Vaughan, Donna Whitten, Wubeshet Woldemariam, Sam Zinaich

Voting Members Absent:

Non-Voting Members Present:
Tony Elmendorf, Alan McCafferty

Others Present:
Mike Biel, Jose Castro-Urioste, Joy Colwell, Michael Connolly, Meghan Cook, Donald Duncan, Colin Fewer, Debra Grant, Emily Hixon, Chris Holford, Joseph Loftis, Michael Lynn, Geoff Schultz, Jonathan Swarts, Lizhe Tan, Alain Togbe, Diana Underwood, Jen Williams, Tim Winders, Shuhui Grace Yang

  1. Determination of quorum.
    • Quorum determined at 10:05 a.m.
  2. Call to order.
    • Meeting called to order at 10:05 a.m.
  3. Approval of the agenda.
    • Motioned for approval with removal of IFC update and addition of Senate website preview.
    • Seconded by Rob Merkovsky
    • Approved by voice vote
  4. Approval of the minutes from May 5, 2023
    • Motioned for approval by Rob Merkovsky
    • Seconded by Michelle Spaulding
    • Approved by voice vote
  5. Remarks by the Senate Chair
    • The Chair provided an update on the Chancellor Search Committee.
      1. The Chair said our job as the search committee is to narrow the list down and share candidate strengths and weaknesses. The committee was not asked to rank the candidates. President Chiang has reserved for himself that responsibility and had determined that he will make the final determination. The discussion so far indicates that the plan is for the last stage to be as public as possible. All candidates will visit both Hammond and Westville campuses as well as the West Lafayette campus. While it will be brutal on the candidates, it is to get as much transparency and visibility as possible. Because we are going to be replacing our chancellor – the committee should conclude their work sometime in December – there is a possibility we might be able to get someone in before the usual time a new administration would come in, which would be July 1 of next year. That, in all likelihood, would depend upon the candidate, if they are free and available to come earlier.
      2. Lee Artz asked if the Chair would elaborate more on the parameters of the Chancellor Search Committee. Are there applicants? Is the search national or international? Are we appealing to chancellors from peer institutions? Do we have a headhunter firm?
        1. The Chair confirmed we do have a headhunter firm. One of its two heads is Sally Mason, a former West Lafayette Provost. Cannot comment further on this time.
        2. Candidate pools and the nature of candidates are not to be discussed, per Chancellor Search Committee Chair Malcolm DeKryger.
      3. The Vice Chair said listening session invitations for faculty were distributed in an email from Lisa Goodnight, on behalf of M. DeKryger. The Vice Chair encouraged everyone to attend. There is also an anonymous survey open until August 24. These sessions are to develop questions from the faculty for prospective candidates.
    • The Chair said he would like to increase transparency in his role as Chair. He said he would like continue discussions prom the previous year, including with the Provost about how we can re-envision ourselves given our enrollment challenges. It appears we are currently in a steady state but are still far below the capacity our institution was built for. We are currently overstaffed on both the faculty administrative sides.
    • Policy to codify faculty representation.
      1. Ed Policy Chair Dave Kozel will work with the Provost to craft policies. The Provost will put forth a memo stating how this will be done. Faculty representatives will be discussed. Faculty representatives should be people who are selected by this body to represent the faculty.
      2. Selection of department chairs and deans will also be examined in order to develop clear language as to what role the faculty have in selections and searches for chairs and deans.
    • Budget transparency
      1. More eyes are needed on the University budget. Budget and Resources Subordinate committee needs populating. The Chair urged Senators to volunteer for a seat on this committee. We cannot provide feedback or have impact on the budget without populating the committee. Experience in finance and budgeting is not necessary. The information being examined largely comes in spreadsheets.
      2. The Parliamentarian said the Budget and Resources Sub-Committee has been removed from the purview of the Faculty Affairs Committee and placed under the Executive Committee. This is inaccurately reflected in the bylaws on the Senate website and should be corrected.
        1. The bylaws were revised by the Secretary to the reflect this.
      3. Relatedly, the Senate was asked by the Provost last year to provide feedback on the proposed budget.
    • The Chair said there are three expenses in the Senate budget. The Chairs of Ed Policy and Faculty Affairs are receiving stipends in the amount of $3,500 for each. $5,000 per year for the Secretary stipend.
      1. The Faculty Senate recently received $13K for AY 23-24.
      2. Will not be spending funds on coffee and donuts.
    • Senate Website
      1. The Vice Chair welcomed everyone to this academic year and provided a brief tour of the Faculty Senate website. The Vice Chair encouraged everyone to keep a printout of the Bylaws and Constitution.
    • Tobin asked about Curriculog and finding approved curriculum documents.
      1. Lee Artz said he understands that Curriculog is difficult to navigate. The website is https://pnw.curriculog.com/. Archived documents can be found here.
      2. Jen Williams said the Secretary will distribute an agenda in Curriculog for which faculty will receive and email notification letting them know that the Faculty Senate agenda for that month has been created. Links are provided within the email to preview and vote on documents. Individual curriculum documents can be found using the search function within Curriculog.
      3. Curriculog can be accessed in the MyPNW portal (https://www.pnw.edu/mypnw) under Faculty Resources.
    • The Chair said the Chancellor is not in attendance and has not attended Senate Meetings since December of last year despite being listed on the agenda. The Provost has since made remarks on the Chancellor’s behalf. The Chair said he believes this is unfair to the Provost, who should be focused more on his role as our Chief Academic Officer and not an apologist for the administration. As such, going forward, there will be no remarks made by others on the Chancellor’s behalf. In the event that the Chancellor is unavailable to attend but would like to provide remarks, the Chair said he will tell him to send a written report.
  6. Remarks by the Chancellor
    • The Chancellor was not in attendance.
  7. New Business:
    • Curriculum Documents Approval
      1. The Curriculum Committee will meet today to review six proposals which will be on the agenda for next month. The Committee will also be discussing the schedule for submitting documents to Curriculog. In the past the schedule for submitting curriculum documents was three weeks before each meeting but the schedule for fall and spring is more compact this academic year. We may end up having January proposals due only two weeks before the Senate meeting. This information for will be provided to the Secretary to publish on the Senate website.
  1. For Action:
    • Resolution to recommend elimination of the Chief of Staff Position
      1. It was clarified by the Parliamentarian that any document that is up for either discussion or action can, and perhaps should, be debated before voting. A motion to adopt the resolution must be made and seconded before debate can occur.
      2. The Chair asked for a motion to adopt the resolution.
        1. Motioned by Rob Merkovsky
        2. Kathy Tobin asked if administrators receive an administrative supplement for taking on extra duties. K. Tobin said, while in the role department chair, she received a supplement for taking on oversight of the International Office. When those roles ended so did compensation for them.
        3. A question was asked about who fills the role and what other positions do they fill.
          1. Lisa Goodnight is currently filling this role and is also the Vice Chancellor of Institutional Advancement.
        4. Bob Kramer said a study was conducted about the number of administrative personnel plus salary and asked for an update on current estimates of those numbers.
          1. The Chair said that study was conducted based on IPEDS data for fiscal year 2021. The Chair provided rough estimates of the figures determined in that study. Since that study the Chancellor has notified faculty that under the new IBBM model administration gets 55% of the budget. The Chair said as a result of this the instructional percentage of the budget is declining rapidly.
        5. Mary Didelot requested an amendment to include in the resolution that the Senate is also asking that any stipend, salary, or other compensation received in this role also be taken away.
        6. The Parliamentarian said without anyone claiming authorship of the document the idea of a friendly amendment must be abandoned which leads straight to an amendment which then becomes a motion which needs to be seconded, debated, and voted on prior to the reconsideration of the main motion.
        7. Verbiage should include, “… and any administrative supplement attached to the position, be eliminated.
          1. Motioned for approval by Mary Didelot
          2. Seconded
          3. Amendment approved by voice vote.
            1. Motion to approve amended resolution approved by voice vote.
          4. The Vice Chair clarified that this is a resolution that will be presented to Senior Leadership without guarantee of their willingness to oblige.
        8. Reports from Senate Standing Committee Chairs
          • The Vice Chair asked incoming committee members to stand up and introduce themselves after the reports from their Chair.
          • Curriculum (Lee Artz)
            1. Lee Artz said there are six proposals to be discussed today and on the agenda for the September Senate meeting.
          • Ed Policy (Dave Kozel)
            1. Dave Kozel said the committee will be meeting today to discuss the final exam policy.
            2. He said Ed Policy members were sent electronic copies of the Constitution and Bylaws so that they can review and familiarize themselves with the responsibilities of the committee.
            3. He said the committee will be discussing the framework for campus policies and procedures relative to the use of AI-generated materials on assignments; the university structure; advising structure and first year advisors; selection of faculty representatives on university committees; and selection of deans, department chairs; what role faculty should play in each process.
            4. He asked committee members to introduce themselves.
            5. The Chair added that the University College was added as a new element of our structure. Senate Leadership and the Provost have talked about how to secure faculty oversight on that. We currently have an Honors College subcommittee which will be grouped with the University College.
          • Faculty Affairs (Rob Hallock)
            1. The Chair asked the members of the committee to stand.
            2. Rob Hallock said the committee is working on administrative evaluations.
            3. Development of DEIJB Committee established last semester.
            4. Will be conducting survey on faculty satisfaction and burnout
            5. Faculty handbook.
              1. Would like to talk to the Provost about assistance in developing the Faculty Handbook.
            6. The Chair said faculty satisfaction surveys were at one time conducted yearly but have not up to now occurred since 2012.
          • Gen Ed & Assessment (vacant)
            1. The Chair asked the members of the committee to stand and introduce themselves
            2. Ali Alavizadeh said the committee will today be discussing the replacement of their chair.
            3. The Chair clarified that C. Furst has taken an administrative position and is therefore no longer eligible to serve. Her seat as an at-large Senator will also need to be filled.
            4. Ali thanked Cari for her work as Chair of the committee.
            5. The Vice Chair said an additional seat on the Gen Ed & Assessment Committee will also need to be filled by CON representative to replace J. Chaney.
          • Nominations, Elections, & Awards (Meden Isaac-Lam)
            1. Kelly Vaughan spoke on behalf of Nominations Chair Meden Isaac-Lam. She said the Nominations Chair has contacted College of Nursing Interim Chair, Amy Fry, requesting a replacement for Senate Vice Chair Diane Spoljoric. The Committee learned today that a replacement for J. Chaney is also needed. They will reach out to Dr. Fry about filling that vacancy, too.
            2. The committee needs to elect a Senator at-large to replace C. Furst.
            3. Roger Kraft introduced himself as a committee member.
          • Student Affairs (Michelle Spaulding)
            1. Michelle Spaulding asked the committee members stand and introduce themselves.
            2. Committee is working on raising awareness amongst students of building open and closing hours.
            3. Students reporting poor Wi-fi, were using attwifi instead of eduroam.
              1. Diane Spoljoric said eduroam can be successfully accessed after selecting ‘forget network’ in wi-fi options and reconnecting.
            4. Club advisors.
  1. Open discussion (as time permits).
    • Tony Elmendorf introduced himself as the Senate Parliamentarian.
    • The Vice Chair pointed that the Senate receives a curriculum release and we also have a chair release via the Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs, we do not pay for that out of our own budget.
    • The Vice Chair advised any committee chairs who regularly report to the Senate should designate a member of their committee to provide a report to the Senate in their absence. The Chair said The Provost has also provided automatic releases for the Senate Chair and Curriculum Chair
    • Status of the Chair of Grade Appeals.
      1. Spaulding said Mike Pelter will be Chair of Grade Appeals.
    • The Provost welcomed everyone back. He invited everyone to the Year Ahead meeting taking place late today.
      1. He said it is exciting to hear we have an influx of international students returning this year. Many arrived on campus earlier in the week. Students started moving into the dorms over the last couple days.
      2. The Provost said he had the opportunity to step into a few department meetings and speak with some committee chairs. The Provost said both he and his staff are available as we take on a number of these larger issues.
      3. The Provost said he has discussed with Dave Kozel significant concerns about AI generated materials and our need as a campus community to adopt the framework for how we intend to address that. He said he looks forward to the participation of the Senate in helping guide that framework.
      4. As other committees come into challenges he said Becky Stankowski and Raida Abuizam are both readily available to provide assistance.
      5. The Provost distributed folders to the Senate on behalf of David Mosley of the Counseling Center.
  1. Adjournment
    • Motion for adjournment by R. Merkovsky.
    • Seconded by M. Spaulding.
    • Meeting adjourned at 11:30 m.