Academic Staff Executive Committee Minutes 03-31-22
1:55 – 4:30 p.m. Thursday, March 31, 2022
53 Bascom Hall
Members Present: Donna Cole; Jenny Dahlberg; Tim Dalby, chair; Stephanie Elkins; Shane Hubbard; Stephanie Jones; Mallory Musolf; Lindsey Stoddard Cameron
Guests: Steve Ackerman, LaVar Charleston, Alissa Ewer, Lesley Fisher
The meeting was called to order at 1:57 p.m.
The minutes of March 24 were approved.
Guest: LaVar Charleston, Chief Diversity Officer
Chief Diversity Officer Charleston has been giving a series of presentations to help the university community conceptualize the Division of Diversity, Equity, and Educational Achievement (DDEEA) differently. DDEEA is doing a lot of internal work to serve as a central resource for the university. The division is finalizing the hiring of two assistant vice provosts, one for high impact practices and the other for student engagement and scholarship programs. The division is also looking for ways to partner with other offices on campus in areas such as reducing potential barriers to scholarship programs, increasing utilization of data in decision-making, and thinking about affirmative action and disability resources. Lack of capacity has been an issue in several spaces. The division recently hired a new finance director, who will be looking to create administrative efficiencies where possible. A new director for the Center for Educational Opportunity has also been hired. Filling these staffing needs allows the division to put its theoretical framework into practice. The division is working to convene DEI officers at the school/college/division level. With respect to the R.E.E.L. Change framework, the division is also working on assessing progress and thinking about the next iteration. Analysis of initial results from the student climate survey is underway. Communication strategy is also a focus area, with a search for a new communications director underway. The division is working on questions around both recruitment and retention of staff, as well as thinking about ways to find out reasons why people stay with the institution in addition to why they leave. It is also important to look at best practices among units and divisions and looking at where efforts might be duplicated so that impact can be maximized, which leads to conversations about reimagining the Diversity Inventory.
Tim Dalby, ASEC Chair, reported on the recent meeting of the chiefs of staff, chairs, and secretaries. Campus is watching the new B2.A variant, and case counts continue to be low. The staff climate survey will start on April 12. It will be online with paper forms available for those who need them. There should be a high-level report available sometime in the fall semester. At the March 30 listening session, topics included advising salaries and the ad hoc faculty committee on administrative burden.
Jake Smith, Secretary of the Academic Staff, reported that mandatory testing of unvaccinated employees and students will be paused effective April 4. There is a small working group that OHR is helping to coordinate regarding issues with titles in distributed IT functions. The latest academic staff chat was focused on challenges and best practices for outreach personnel. Jake reported that the standing committee elections are live and will close on April 14.
Guest: Steve Ackerman, Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education
Vice Chancellor Ackerman discussed remote work within the Office of the VCRGE. Since he was a center director, there has been focus on the job the individual was performing as well as the access the individual had to needed equipment when making decisions about remote work. There was a great deal of thought put into how to keep people on campus when absolutely necessary when the pandemic hit, how to bring employees back to campus when it was safe to do so, as well as the question of what we learned around the value of flexible work schedules, the viability of hybrid work, and the value of in-person collaboration to creating workplace culture. OVCRGE is approving requests through June at this time.
ASEC expressed concern about staffing in Research and Sponsored Programs. During FY18-21, there were between 7 and 11 open positions. For FY22, there are 18. There has been some movement of OVCRGE employees to the Administrative Transformation Program, as well as a budget reduction. There are postings out to try to fill these positions, and consultants have been hired to temporarily fill some of these positions. In the longer term, there have been requests for multiple positions in the newest budget plan beyond filling the ones that are currently open.
On the topic of ATP, Vice Chancellor Ackerman expressed confidence that the research administration tools and the program as a whole will work well for our campus and address UW-Madison’s unique needs as the flagship institution within the UW System.
Donna Cole reported that the SMPH CASI will be meeting again with Jon Audhya and Nancy Raymond to discuss use of the research professor title in the school.
Stephanie Elkins reported on the recent meeting of the Librarians Assembly. The professional concerns committee discussed masking in the libraries.
Mallory Musolf reported on the meeting of the UW System Reps. The group is working on processes around maintaining institutional knowledge related to turnover within the group. UW System has put together a repository for working documents. The reps heard from Interim President Mike Falbo and reemphasized the necessity for strong advocacy within the presidential role. Progression, benefits, and overall morale were also topics of discussion. The reps are planning to request a meeting with incoming System President Jay Rothman either this academic year or as part of a special meeting during the summer.
Motion to Convene in Closed Session Pursuant to Wis. Stats. 19.85(1)(c), and (f) to Discuss Appointments to the Student Panels (Stoddard Cameron). Seconded. Approved.
Motion to Reconvene in Open Session (Musolf). Seconded. Approved.
· Appointments – for vote
Motion to appoint the Director, Associate Director, and Student Conduct Coordinator from the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards to the Student Panels as ex officio members for Title IX and sexual misconduct cases through June 30, 2025 (Stoddard Cameron). Seconded. Approved.
· April Assembly Meeting Agenda
Motion to approve the April Assembly meeting agenda (Stoddard Cameron). Seconded. Approved.
· Briefing Materials for New Chancellor
ASEC began discussing briefing materials for the incoming chancellor. The document will include priorities and issues related to academic staff. ASEC will continue its discussion at the April 7 meeting.
· Topics for Guests
VPTL: progress in the mentoring space, update on diversity initiatives within the center; engagement stats, how is success measured for the center
OHR: data/resources available to appellants from local/campus HR in making their cases through the TTC appeals process; how TTC appeals process will work SJDs undergo further changes; loading employees’ new TTC responsibilities into PMDP; impacts of changes to degree requirements in TTC
Meeting adjourned at 4:21 p.m.
Minutes submitted by Jake Smith, Secretary of the Academic Staff