ACADEMIC STAFF ASSEMBLY MEETING MINUTES
272 Bascom Hall
Monday, May 9, 2022
3:30 to 5:00 p.m.
Provost Karl Scholz called the meeting to order at 3:32 p.m.
Memorial Resolution for Dave Black (ASA #788)
Kelsey Brannan presented the memorial resolution for Dave Black.
Recognition of Academic Staff Excellence Award Winners
Debra Shapiro, Professional Development and Recognition Committee member, announced the winners of the 2021-22 Academic Staff Excellence Awards. The winners are Stacy Forster (Chancellor’s Hilldale Award for Excellence in Teaching), George Arndt (Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Service to the University), Christine Sorenson (Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Research: Independent Investigator), Changjiu Zhao (Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Research: Critical Research Support), Isa Dolski (Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Leadership: Individual Unit Level), Nancy Linh Karls (Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Leadership: College, School, or Larger University Community Level), Joy Schelble (Robert and Carroll Heideman Award for Excellence in Public Service and Outreach), John Koger (Martha Casey Award for Dedication to Excellence), Dale Wilson (Martha Casey Award for Dedication to Excellence), Mo Bischof (Ann Wallace Career Achievement Award), and Brenda Spychalla (Ann Wallace Career Achievement Award).
Guests: Steve Ackerman, Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education; and Bill Karpus, Dean of the Graduate School
Dean Karpus presented an update on the Graduate School’s activities with respect to funding and programmatic analysis. The Graduate School supports graduate students and programs both through funding exercises as well as data that it collects and makes available to help drive programmatic excellence. He reported on the FY22-23 allocations for the Advanced Opportunity Fellowship (AOF) program and the Graduate Student Support Competition. The AOF program has $6.75 million in commitments to advance diversity and inclusion for underrepresented minority and first-generation graduate students. The Graduate Student Support Competition funds are allocated to graduate programs to support recruitment of and success for graduate students. Dean Karpus reported on training grants through the National Institutes of Health, which UW-Madison has accumulated over a number of years. The Graduate School offers tuition and fringe benefits for these trainees, and UW-Madison supports over 300 slots in any given year. The Graduate School is also interested in pushing out useable data to graduate programs, faculty and staff, department chairs, and deans’ offices. Graduate School Explorer is a webpage that has these data through a variety of filters, and there is work underway in partnership with Academic Planning and Institutional Review to add AAU peer data. We have also partnered with Academic Analytics to look at 15 years’ worth of career outcomes data for PhD graduates. There is also a doctoral student survey that was launched two years ago, in addition to doctoral and masters exit surveys, to aid in program reviews and self-studies.
Vice Chancellor Ackerman talked about the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education’s role in supporting the research enterprise and needs of graduate education in three ways: 1) through the WARF grant, 2) through a variety of interdisciplinary research centers that the OVCRGE oversees, 3) through campus infrastructure (e.g., Research and Sponsored Programs, the Institutional Review Board, the Conflict of Interest Office). The WARF grant supports investments in faculty recruitment and retention, strategic initiatives, graduate student support, fall research competition, matching grants, and faculty fellowships. The base grant for FY22 is $60,445,000. FY22 research strategic initiatives included research core revitalization, library collections enhancements, the Pandemic-affected Research Continuation Initiative, and Research Forward. Research centers are reviewed on a 5-year cycle. All centers have now received at least one review, and OVCRGE is looking at the review process itself to make it more efficient going forward. Vice Chancellor Ackerman has also looked at the use of the research professor title, and it has not been used as much as expected within the centers. He has asked the VCRGE CASI to put together a committee to look at the use of the title and understand why it is or is not being used. With regard to areas of campus infrastructure, there are questions on remote work policies within OVCRGE. In fall 2021, OVCRGE put policies in place of 60% onsite/40% remote, with 80% onsite/20% remote for those with supervisory responsibilities. As people were initially coming back onsite, there were concerns about how many people were in the same space, and as time goes on, OVCRGE has been rethinking this policy. OVCRGE is not hiring 100% remote employees at this point. There is support for flexible work schedules, and further changes will take into account where campus is going and how the current policies are working.
Guests: Alex Frank and Nathan Jandl, Office of Sustainability
Alex and Nathan discussed the work of the Sustainability Advisory Council and its recommendations. Working with Native Nations UW-Madison Working Group and the First Nations of Wisconsin is necessary to start building a sustainable future for the institution. Sustainability at UW-Madison is defined as uniting equity, efficiency, education, and research in service of environmental health for all. The definition was developed through the work of the Sustainability Advisory Council, which had representation from academic staff, faculty, university staff, and students. The council also developed a new framework for how to achieve leadership in sustainability, integrating that framework into our culture, purpose, and practice. Culture refers to our behavioral and procedural norms, and making sustainability principles part of our day-to-day interactions, operations, and decision-making. Regarding purpose, this entails elevating sustainability as a discipline, supporting interdisciplinary research, and expanding learning opportunities in this space. Practice in this instance refers to “walking the talk” with policies, procedures, and systems that help build a sustainable university. This framework is aligned to help move us from a Silver STARS rating to an eventual Platinum rating, to help meet commitments in the Campus Master Plan to become a zero-waste campus, and to meet carbon neutrality goals as part of the Climate Resilience Commitment signed by the Chancellor. Alex recommended reaching out to him to discuss these areas with various teams, joining the sustainability community of practice, pursuing a Green Office/Green Lab certification, applying for a Sustainability Course Attribute, and subscribing to the Office of Sustainability newsletter for continued updates.
Automatic Consent Business
The Academic Staff Assembly minutes of Monday, April 11, 2022, were approved.
Academic Staff Assembly Standing Committee Election Results (ASA #789)
Secretary of the Academic Staff Jake Smith presented the 2022 Assembly standing committee election results. Pamela O’Donnell, Corissa Runde, and Miranda Winkelman were elected to the Communications Committee. Dean Ladwig, Dagna Sheerar, and Seng Thao were elected to the Compensation and Economic Benefits Committee. David Toland and Cynthia Waldeck were elected to the Districting and Representation Committee. Liza Chang, Tarakee Jackson, and Alissa Oleck were elected to the Mentoring Committee. Nicole Jennings, Nathan Jung, and Kelly Krein were elected to the Nominating Committee. Kelly Cuene, Angie Rosas, and Scott Wildman were elected to the Personnel Policies and Procedures Committee. Nick Ewoldt, Alyssa Phelps, Martha Reck, and Bill Tishler were elected to the Professional Development and Recognition Committee. Terms of office are from July 1, 2022 – June 30, 2025.
ASEC Chair Tim Dalby presented the ASEC report. Tim reminded representatives and alternates in even-numbered districts about contacting the Secretary of the Academic Staff Office regarding the possibility of reappointment. Tim also discussed ASEC’s work on a potential resolution to the new Chancellor regarding academic staff morale. Tim encouraged representatives and alternates to provide any suggestions that are related to improving morale to the Secretary of the Academic Staff Office. Tim congratulated new ASEC members Albert Muniz, Julie Johnson, and Alissa Ewer, who will be starting terms as of July 1, and he also thanked outgoing ASEC members Shane Hubbard, Bill Tishler, and Jenny Dahlberg for their service as they rotate off. He also expressed appreciation to Assembly representatives and alternates, ASEC, and members of administration for their work in and with shared governance.
Jenny Dahlberg presented the ASPRO report. Jenny will continue to serve as President of the ASPRO Board after she rotates off of ASEC. ASPRO co-hosted a forum with PROFS on April 28 on the importance and the value of higher education. The Legislature is out of session, and there is expected to be a great deal of transition in the coming months. There are a record thirty incumbents that are not seeking re-election. Jenny encouraged anyone interested in joining ASPRO or anyone with questions about ASPRO activities to contact her directly.
Resolution in Recognition of Rebecca Blank (ASA #790)
Lindsey Stoddard Cameron, ASEC Member, moved the approval of the Resolution in Recognition of Rebecca Blank. Seconded. Approved.
Provost Scholz thanked everyone for all that they have done to make the year successful. There have been changes to COVID testing and vaccination services. Beginning in late May, testing and antigen test pickup will take place on the first floor of 333 East Campus Mall. Leadership continues to monitor a modest uptick in COVID cases and continues to work with public health experts and our colleagues in SMPH. Based on guidance, we are not changing campus policies at this time and encourage people to wear masks and get boosters as needed. On Saturday, there was a ceremony to acknowledge the Divine Nine Plaza on East Campus Mall. Commencement will take place on May 13 and May 14. US Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield will speak on Saturday. The Center for World University Rankings recently ranked UW-Madison 27th of all universities in the world. Provost Scholz recognized junior Dawry Ruiz as a recipient of a 2022 Truman Scholarship, which is one of the most significant honors for undergraduates in the country. We also have four Goldwater Scholarship winners out of 417 awarded total across the country. The new CALS Dean will be appointed soon, and Rob Cramer has been appointed as the new Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration. There will be a farewell event for Chancellor Blank on May 16 at the Memorial Union Terrace.
Meeting adjourned at 5:05 pm.
Minutes submitted by Jake Smith, Secretary of the Academic Staff