University Committee Meeting Minutes 2015-04-27
approved May 4, 2015
April 27, 2015
Present: Broman (from 2:00), Fair (chair), Meyerand, Petty, Wendt
1. Meeting called to order: 12:31 PM.
2. UC and PROFS discussed faculty workload document from UWS, which was sent to campus for comment. Probably stems from recent actions at UNC (4 and 4) and Iowa (Hunger Games), as well as the need to clarify “reassignment” terminology
3. Draft Senate agenda circulated and discussed.
4. Discussion of Committee on Committees’ concerns and suggestions.
5. Fair explained that a decision on next year’s UC Chair will be made in May.
6. SMPH five-year plan has been filed and is available for UC review.
7. Minutes of the meeting of April 20, 2015, approved.
8. Wendt moved and Petty 2nd to convene in closed session pursuant to Wis. Stats. 19.85(1)(c) and (f) to discuss personnel matters. Motion passed: 12:50 PM.
9. Rule waivers
a. The UC considered and unanimously approved one dual role waiver request.
b. The UC considered and unanimously approved one tenure clock extension.
10. Committee assignments
a. The UC reviewed nominations/applications for two vacancies on the Athletic Board. UC members will send rankings and recommendations on applicants to the Secretary of the Faculty by the end of the week.
b. The UC considered names to fill vacancies on the library committee due to sabbaticals and a resignation. Secretary of the Faculty will contact the nominees.
c. The UC considered names to fill sabbatical vacancies on the CFRR. The Secretary of the Faculty will contact nominees.
11. Meyerand moved and Wendt 2nd to reconvene in open session. Motion passed: 1:12 PM.
12. Meyerand noted (and other faculty have reported) that the office of the VCRGE has posted Associate Vice Chancellor PVLs with very short application periods. The PVLs were not posted on the VCRGE website and email notification of the openings only went out to a subset of the faculty.
13. Review of University Committee procedures document, which includes UWS faculty representation. UC will continue discussion of this document at a future meeting when all are present. Document will serve as guideline for new member orientation.
14. Legislative update (PROFS). O’Meara summarized recent legislative meetings and discussions at Capitol. Ample discussion. Harry Peterson, a retired faculty member, has been meeting with former chancellors and campus external relations staff about a possible message on budget and/or shared governance.
15. Provost update (Sarah Mangelsdorf).
a. Discussion of academic calendar, ad hoc group looking at shifting 2nd semester to avoid finals/commencement overlap and to allow for early summer session. Probably won’t go into effect this year.
b. Discussion of international travel policy. Concern that process is not faculty driven or sufficiently transparent. UC will follow up on May 18 with International Division dean and chair of international travel committee.
c. Discussion of library consolidation efforts. Process perceived by library and department staffs as top-down and not transparent, leading to morale concerns. Mangelsdorf explained that UW has more physical libraries than any other university in the country and some spaces are underutilized. She added that there are no pre-determined decisions or outcomes in this process.
16. Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration update (Darrell Bazzell)
a. Bazzell updated UC on rollout of HR design. Concern from SMPH about whether clinical track faculty would be treated more like academic staff or like faculty. Bazzell has asked for policy release to be postponed. UC raised parallel concern with researchers on separate funding. Discussion of possible carve-out exception.
b. Fair explained idea of restructuring various budget committees. Retirement and Financial Emergency have specific separate mandates, but other committees related to financial issues overlap substantially and do not necessarily have sufficient workload every year. Bazzell concurred with restructuring.
i. Ad hoc “special topic” charge may not provide enough feedback for UC.
ii. Bazzell indicated need for Retirement Committee FAQ as they often address the same questions repeatedly.
iii. Discussion of options to restructure retirement of faculty to encourage stronger bond with university. Phased retirement might be explored in future and this might make a good charge for the financial committee next year.
iv. UC suggested that explanation of $1B “reserve” could be clearer. Bazzell believes that this is a message that has to come from System.
17. Chancellor update (Rebecca Blank)
a. Blank provided an update on the state budget process and rollout of budget cut message. Hard to tell whether multiple efforts and public opinion to reduce cut will be successful or not. Flexibilities still uncertain. Impact of former chancellors’ weighing in will be minimal. Blank believes they should focus on budget rather than shared governance.
b. Blank convinced that task force on post tenure review must come back with significant recommendations for real change or we risk legislature acting against university interests.
c. Blank more concerned about shared governance. Have to make sure Regents are not making hiring decisions and that faculty still have majority voice.
d. Blank provided an update on DGS interviews and encouraged UC and faculty to get involved.
e. Morgridge match will end on June 8 in terms of guaranteed match. Guidelines may vary by school/college.
f. David Gardner (student representative to Athletic Board) updated UC and chancellor on requested flexible committee on high-profile hires. Blank recommended this committee be small.
18. UC continued discussion after Blank’s departure about faculty majority on committees.
19. Discussion of faculty representatives to UW System continued. Have to balance need to show Madison commitment (in writing) and need for flexibility as UC membership changes. Importance of travel reimbursement discussed. Continuity and connection to UC both priorities. Consensus to add “normally” to selection policy to reflect other possible approaches.
20. Meeting adjourned: 3:45 PM.