University Committee Meeting Minutes
Minutes approved 01/25/2021
Minutes for January 11, 2021
Approved January 25, 2021
UC members present: Halverson, Masters, Papp, Sandgren, Tracy, Wolf (chair)
Also present, besides
those mentioned below: Michaela Aust, Juliana Bennett, Greg
Bump, Alejandra Canales, Tim Dalby, Saketram Durbha, Gideon Elliott, Michelle
Felber, Lesley Fisher, Amol Goyal, Erin Gretzinger, Kevin Jacobson, Yvonne Kim,
Kaitlin Kons, Jack O’Meara, Kelly Meyerhofer, Julian Nazareth, Jack Phillips,
Tod Prichard, Lori Reesor, Jane Richard,
Devi Shastri, Jake Smith, Megan Spielbauer Sandate, Brandon Springer, Bill Tishler, John Zumbrunnen
Chair Wolf called the meeting to order at 1:00 pm.
Tracy moved to approve the minutes of January 4, 2021. Seconded. Passed.
Secretary of the Faculty Heather Daniels provided an update on the development of the Extension Division’s own faculty policies.
Matthew Mitnick, ASM chair, presented
their argument for different pass/fail options for the fall and spring
semesters. They talked with the Provost about a task force for spring. They
hope that the University Committee will support this. Several students provided
testimonials regarding their experiences and need for pass/fail options.
Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration, Laurent Heller, reported that a soft launch of the new COVID-19 testing system was happening this week. The University Committee asked about deferred maintenance in campus buildings; those costs add up to about $1.5 billion. UW-Madison made an unusually large request of $150 million for deferred maintenance. The last state budget on this budget line was used on campus for fire system replacement and elevator repair.
Provost Karl Scholz and Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Lori Reesor reported that students, faculty, and staff will be able to designate their preferred pronouns in Canvas starting this spring. Only in Canvas at this point, plans are to make pronoun information available in all campus systems by fall 2021.
The Provost also shared information on the Research @ UW, a searchable database of specific research projects. It is a useful tool for graduate students and may be useful by WARF and businesses. Faculty may opt out of being listed. The University Committee had no issues with this idea.
The University Committee supported creating a spring 2021 pandemic taskforce on academic policies which would recommend temporary changes to academic policies. The 12-person committee would be chaired by John Zumbrunnen, with a report due in mid-February.
Provost Scholz also presented the faculty promotional increases for the 2021-2022 fiscal year. The increases are based on Consumer Price Index (CPI) for 12 months from September, less food and energy costs. They were discussed and approved by the University Committee.
Vaishali Bakshi, Kate Moran, and Lindsey Stoddard Cameron presented the Committee on Women in the University (CWU) annual report. The committee voted to change its name to Committee for Women in the University, and the proposal will go to Faculty Senate in February. CWU participated in various campus award selection processes, and also surveyed the university community on what’s important to women, particularly at UW-Madison.
Steph Tai, Jonathan Patz, Mark Johnson, and Noah Feinstein shared a draft resolution for the Faculty Senate to consider in February on divestment. It also calls for transparency in procurement measures. It was informed by past attempts and the strong desire to address climate change as much as possible.
Masters moved to convene in closed session pursuant to Wis. Stats. 19.85(1)(c) and (f) to discuss grievances and waivers. Seconded. Passed at 3:01 pm. One track transfer and one dual-role waiver were approved.
Papp moved to convene in open session. Seconded. Passed at 4:36 pm.
The University Committee discussed faculty who might be on the pandemic taskforce on academic policies.
Adjourned at 4:49 pm.
Submitted by Heather Daniels, Secretary of the Faculty