University Committee Meeting Minutes 2023-07-24
Minutes for July 24, 2023
UC members present: Bernard-Donals, Tejedo-Herrero, Thibeault (chair), Zweibel
Others present: Greg Bump, Michelle Felber, Lesley Fisher, Jennifer Noyes, Julie Scharm,
Jake Smith, Lindsey Stoddard Cameron
Chair Thibeault called the meeting to order at 1:02 pm.
Paul Seitz, Director of Strategic Initiatives, discussed the potential plans for real estate development on the west side of campus. The potential plans call for the movement of existing units into different locations. There was a discussion about the need for affordable housing for students. The Board of Regents will be briefed in the fall and then there will be a proposal to approve demolition of the Biotron as a first step. The Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration Office plans to have another public session on the west campus plans in the fall.
Bernard-Donals motioned, and it was seconded and approved, to convene in closed session pursuant to Wis. Stats. 19.85(1)(c) and (f) to discuss waivers at 1:31 pm. One dual-role waiver, one tenure clock extension and one leave of absence were approved.
Bernard-Donals motioned to reconvene in open session at 1:42 pm. It was seconded and approved.
The minutes from July 10, 2023, were approved with one correction.
The University Committee received an update on two meetings held with the Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education and the Dean of the Graduate School regarding a potential change in the reporting line of the dean. The vice chancellor and the dean are preparing information on ways to continue and strengthen the connection between research and graduate education as well as a list of benefits and drawbacks from such a change.
A new endowment for Lillian Tong will provide for a new teaching award, which will alternate between faculty and academic staff each year. There is a working group that may convene this fall to work on questions regarding the academic calendar including a fall break. There will be faculty on the working group (likely including a chair/co-chair), and Secretary Daniels is helping to craft the charge.
The University Committee discussed replacing the faculty member from the Arboretum Committee with the Arboretum Director or designee. The UC is fine with this change. The edit will go to Faculty Senate in the fall.
JJ Andrews, Dante Fratta, Lori Lopez and Elise Ahn presented the Native Nations Tuition Waiver report that was jointly prepared by the Campus Diversity and Climate Committee and the Committee on Undergraduate Recruitment, Admissions and Financial Aid. The committees heard a presentation about creating change for Native students, and they spent a year learning how a program could work. They then drafted the report and recommendations.
Fourteen states, including many peers, offer tuition assistance programs to Native students. Although data isn’t robust, they expect 300-400 students a year could be positively affected by a tuition program. Everyone they have talked to is in favor of a program. The report provides a framework for the program, but further operational details will need to be determined.
Jennifer Mnookin, Chancellor, indicated she continues to work on putting a tuition program in place for indigenous students. It would need to be for enrolled tribal members. She is helping onboard the new provost for his August 1 start date.
The Chancellor and the University Committee discussed the timeline for considering a move in the reporting line for the Dean of the Graduate School. The UC will draft a timeline and share with the chancellor at a later date.
Thibeault adjourned the meeting at 3:19 pm.
Minutes submitted by Heather Daniels, Secretary of the Faculty.