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University Committee Meeting Minutes 2023-11-27

Minutes approved December 4, 2023

Minutes for November 27, 2023

UC members present: Bernard-Donals, Jones, King, Tejedo-Herrero, Thibeault (chair), Zweibel

Others present: Michelle Felber, Lesley Fisher, Jack O’Meara and Julie Scharm


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

The minutes from November 20, 2023, were approved by automatic consent.

Nasia Safdar and Lindsey Stoddard Cameron, administrator, from the Committee for Women in the University said the committee focused on three areas in 2022-23. They reviewed the climate survey and noted process improvement is needed regarding hostile and intimidating behavior. They visited nearly 50 lactation spaces on campus and made recommendations. They also discussed questions with the Office of Human Resources about compensation and promotion for women.

Eve Emshwiller, chair of the Lectures Committee, reported that although the number of requests for funding have rebounded, they have still not reached pre-COVID levels. Student organizations as well as departments or academic units are eligible to apply for funding. The success rate of applications is very high.

Bill Karpus, Dean of the Graduate School, discussed segregated fees. He appreciated receiving the information on University Health Services usage by graduate students. Segregated fee payments for graduate students are not due until near the end of the semester, but this information is not noticed on the bill received by students. Dean Karpus agreed that information about the deferment should be sent annually to graduate students.

He is still working on a graduate student stipend increase. Our main competitors offer stipends that are over 90% of the cost of living. Right now, we are at 78%.

The University Committee reviewed the Faculty Senate agenda. They agreed to place a resolution on the pay plan on the agenda only if progress was not being made in negotiations with the legislature. 

Provost Charles Isbell said the timeline for rolling out information on the new budget model would be in January or February. This is when he anticipates the task forces beginning. The budget office is currently gathering information on what peers are doing as far as Responsibility Center Management (RCM) budget models.

In regards to the strategic hiring initiative, he hopes to announce at least 1 or 2 hiring areas by the end of the calendar year and would expect to see a total of 3-4 areas over the next 4-5 months. It is likely that some departments will be able to hire additional faculty in searches that they already have underway. The plan is to hire 120-150 faculty in total over the next 3 years.

Diana Harvey, the new Vice Chancellor for Strategic Communications, introduced herself to the committee. She started on September 1 and has felt very welcomed as she has met with people across campus. She is looking to align communications across campus, not centralize them. She understands that schools, colleges and departments have their own priorities but need to find a way to ladder up to centralized priorities. There seems to be interest in this idea.

She is planning to create some communities of practice for communicators from leadership to social media. She will also help the chancellor shape and share her priorities for campus. Right now, she is working with the Office of Strategic Consulting to research what offices like hers look like at peer institutions. Then she will formulate a plan that she would be interested in sharing with the University Committee.

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 and committee appointments at 2:56 pm. One dual role and two committee appointments were approved.

Bernard-Donals motioned to reconvene in open session at 3:15 pm. It was seconded and approved.

Thibeault adjourned the meeting at 3:20 pm.

KeywordsUniversity Committee   Doc ID133273
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Created2023-12-08 13:49:45Updated2024-02-14 16:32:45
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