University Committee Meeting Minutes
Minutes approved 09/14/2020
Minutes for August 31, 2020
Approved September 14, 2020 with one
UC members present: Masters, Papp, Sandgren, Tracy, Wolf (chair)
UC members absent: Halverson
Also present, besides those mentioned below: Michaela
Aust, Michael Bernard-Donals, Greg Bump, Laura Downer, Michelle Felber, Amol
Goyal, Kevin Jacobson, John Lucas, Matt Mayrl, Kelly Meyerhofer, Jack O’Meara,
Noel Radomski, Jane Richard, Jake Smith,
Kirsten Wolf called the meeting to order at 1:01 pm.
Kristyn Masters reported that the Smart Restart website has a new section on caregiving.
Minutes for August 24, 2020 were approved by unanimous consent.
Cheryl Gittens, Interim Chief Diversity Officer, introduced herself. Strategic priorities in her office for 2018-2022 are to provide thought leadership; develop the next generation of leaders; foster institutional commitment, and chronicle our commitment. She has four focus areas in the near term: education and training, recruitment and retention, inclusion and community building, and communications and storytelling.
Eric Wilcots, Dean of the College of Letters & Science, introduced himself. The three areas he would like to work on are stewarding and advancing the undergraduate experience by thinking about what the curriculum should look like for the 2020s and 2030s; the research mission of the college; and inclusion and diversity. He doesn’t want to hear stories of survival at graduation, but rather stories of thriving.
Karl Scholz, Provost, said that instructors who need to shift modality of their classes should use the same process as before the semester began, starting by talking to their department chair. He and the University Committee agreed that incoming assistant professors should be eligible for COVID-19-related clock extensions.
He proposed a change to the academic calendar for the spring semester that would include starting about a week later (January 27) and reducing spring break to a long weekend. Classes would not be held on Saturday, March 27, Friday, April 2, or Saturday, April 3. The University Committee will bring this to the Faculty Senate at the special session September 14.
Chancellor Rebecca Blank shared that the extended period for dorm move-in ended today. All students are tested upon arrival and currently the percent positive rate is 1.3%, which is below Dane County. Students who test positive either went home or are in isolation.
Instruction starts September 2, and convocation will be held online September 1. Student services and UWPD are doing rounds on weekend evenings talking to individuals about the public health measures in place in Dane County. They will do emergency suspensions if students are violating health protocols.
The September 9 newly promoted faculty event will be online. Campus welcomed the largest new class of faculty in decades this year.
Tracy moved to convene in closed session pursuant to Wis. Stats. 19.85(1)(c) and (f) to discuss waivers and grievance. Seconded. Passed at 2:57 pm.
Tracy moved to convene in open session which was seconded at 3:05 pm.
Sandgren moved to schedule a special session of the Faculty Senate on September 14 with an update on the Smart Restart/COVID-19 followed by a question period. The only other agenda item would be the proposed academic calendar change for the spring semester. Seconded. Approved.
Chair Wolf adjourned the meeting at 3:20 pm.
Submitted by Heather Daniels, Secretary of the Faculty