University Committee Meeting Minutes 2024-02-26

Minutes approved March 4, 2024

Minutes for February 26, 2024

UC members present: Bernard-Donals, Jones, Li, Tejedo-Herrero, Thibeault (chair), Zweibel
Others present: Michelle Felber, Julie Scharm

Chair Thibeault called the meeting to order at 1:00 pm. 

Li motioned, and it was seconded and approved, to convene in closed session pursuant to Wis. Stats. 19.85(1)(c) and (f) to discuss a faculty hire at 1:00 pm. 

Li motioned to reconvene in open session at 1:14 pm. It was seconded and approved. 

Kevin Jacobson, ASM chair, reported that sustainability has been a big focus for ASM. Students are pretty happy with the Chancellor’s goals and timeline. On the legislative side, they have worked on a bill that would remove state taxes on student loan forgiveness. Wisconsin is one of the handful of states that still tax forgiveness. They are also working on other legislative priorities in anticipation of the next budget process. 

They have been having ongoing conversations with the Dean of Students office and others about free speech. They would like to work to improve protest response processes. A couple ideas they have been working on is including students in the student support team that attends protests to make sure the protesters understand the ground rules and following up with protesters after a protest to ask for feedback or answer questions.  

The minutes from February 19, 2024, were approved by automatic consent with one change.

Secretary Heather Daniels reported that the use of AI in dossiers, both research/scholarly product as well as statements was brought up as a future issue to discuss at the all divisional meeting. The University Committee briefly discussed the way to collect information for final exam block usage and felt a survey might be better. Secretary Daniels asked the UC to consider how important it was for assistant professors to directly request a TCE for childbirth/adoption and if it was necessary to go through a system of approvals in Workday, whether that would dissuade requests. 

The University Committee reviewed the March Senate agenda and talked about the proposed amendment providing more context about the rank of instructor. 

Provost Charles Isbell discussed his preliminary thoughts about the leadership breakfast discussion on department chairs. The University Committee discussed perceptions about using the word chair vs head and associated connotations of those words. There was general agreement about more support for chairs in general. At an institution the size of UW-Madison, where there are a large number of departments, providing administrative support can be difficult due to scale. 

Lisa Forrest, chair of the Committee on Disability Access and Inclusion, presented the annual report for the committee. They have been working on raising awareness about Charles Van Hise’s participation in the eugenics movement and putting a plaque in Van Hise Hall recognizing this. The approval process is nearing the end for the plaque. They are also looking back at the resolution passed by the Senate regarding disability access to identify action items the committee could undertake in the future. 

Carol Hulland and Kris Kwekkeboom, co-chairs of the Retirement Issues Committee, presented their annual report. They had initially been working on a survey, but switched to meeting with human resources leaders in larger campus units to ask what gaps they see. They are also pairing with members of the Office of Human Resources to co-facilitate workshops are various campus conferences. Their goal is to normalize conversations about retirement as a wellness issue. They have also been working with the Office of Human Resources on volunteers since a large number of campus volunteers are retirees. 

Jones 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 and committee appointments at 3:00 pm. One dual-role waiver was approved. 

Li motioned to reconvene in open session at 3:18 pm. It was seconded and approved. 

Thibeault adjourned the meeting at 3:26 pm.

Minutes submitted by Heather Daniels, Secretary of the Faculty

KeywordsUniversity Committee   Doc ID135919
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Created2024-03-07 15:06:19Updated2024-03-07 15:07:49
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