ACADEMIC SENATE MINUTES

 

 

DATE:           September 30, 2010

 

PRESENT:    Don Larsen                                         Sandie Rietz

                        Paul Bauer                                           Rakesh Sah

                        Lorrie Steerey                                     Craig McKenzie

                        Doug Brown                                       Bruce Brumley

                        Patricia Vettel-Becker                         Diane Duin (ex-officio)

                        Tasneem Khaleel (ex-officio)              Mary Susan Fishbaugh (ex-officio)

 

ABSENT:      Stephen Eliason*                                Keith Edgerton*

                        Mark Hardt*                                       Kayla Miller (student)

                        Tim Wilkinson (ex-officio)                 John Cech (ex-officio)

                        Gary Young (ex-officio)*                   Terrie Iverson (ex-officio)

                        Stacy Klippenstein (ex-officio)

* excused

 

PRESIDING:                                                                   Lorrie Steerey, Chair

 

 

Lorrie Steerey called the meeting to order at 3:45 p.m. in the Missouri room.

 

The minutes of September 16 were accepted as presented.

 

I.          ITEMS FOR INFORMATION

 

Item 1  Committee Roster 2010-2011

Item 2  Committee Report 2009-2010:  Graduate Committee

Item 4  Committee Report 2009-2010:  General Education Committee

Item 5  Committee Report 2009-2010:  Commencement Committee

Item 9  Committee Report 2009-2010:  Library Committee

Item 10  Committee Report 2009-2010:  Academic Standards and Scholastic Standing Committee

 

Ž Motion by Bruce Brumley, seconded by Sandie Rietz to accept Items 1, 2, 4, 5, 9, and 10 for information.

 

Ž Motion carried.

 

Item 41  BS Major in Biology Medical Laboratory Science Option.  Modification of an existing program.

Item 41.a  BIOB 102 Discover Biology Laboratory.  Change course description.

Item 41.b  BIOM 401 Medical Microbiology Lab.  Change prerequisite.

 

Ž Motion by Bruce Brumley, seconded by Sandie Rietz to accept Items 41-41.b for information.

 

Ž Motion carried.

 

II.        ITEM – FIRST READING

 

Item 46  Special Education Supervisory Endorsement (graduate).  Modification of an existing program.

 

The question was raised as to who is the Director of Graduate Studies at this time.  It was stated that Gary Young took it over as part of his position as Provost.  However, this is a temporary solution, and the Graduate Committee will most likely recommend that we hire a full-time Director.  The Graduate Studies Directorship is too much for a faculty member to handle.

 

Ž Motion by Bruce Brumley, seconded by Sandie Rietz to approve Item 46 on first reading.

 

Ž Motion carried.

 

Ž Motion by Sandie Rietz, seconded by Bruce Brumley to waive second reading of Item 46.

 

Ž Motion carried.

 

III.       DISCUSSION/ACTION ITEMS

 

A.  Send Out Request for Sabbatical Committee Volunteers

 

It was noted that the COT faculty do have sabbaticals available to them, but it is funding-based for one semester, not a whole year.  It was suggested that one joint committee could award sabbaticals for both faculty groups.  It was cited that there are usually many applications for sabbaticals, and a limited amount of funding, so putting the COT faculty “in competition” with the east campus faculty would probably not be a good idea.

 

B.  Chancellor/Faculty Forum:  October 14

 

Interim Chancellor Groseth has asked that the Senate provide him with a short list of concerns to be discussed at the forum on October 14.

 

It was stated we should definitely ask Dr. Groseth how we can cut costs, especially with the downtown campus.

 

It was noted that we really need a report of the work being done to recruit Chinese students.  It was cited that we have 50 international students (not just from China) this Fall.  It was noted that all of the costs for travel to China are paid from Foundation funds, but Director Lacy’s salary is part of the general fund.  It was noted that if that Foundation money were not being spent on travel to China, it could be used for other things, like scholarships.  Do the donors of that money know what it is being used for?

 

It was cited that all the international students are paying out-of-state tuition, so we really need a cost-benefit analysis of the money spent on recruiting those students.

 

It was noted that MSUB has signed letters with several Chinese universities, promising certain curriculum.  How does that impact our local students?  What happens if we stop offering that promised curriculum, which is the case with the MIS program in the College of Business?  How many of these agreements are there?

 

It was cited that most of the programs the Chinese students/universities are interested in at the COT are already full.  If we get a bunch of new Chinese students into these programs, we have immediate staffing issues.  The COT is growing fast.  Of the MSUB record-breaking enrollment this fall, 1500 students are at the COT.

 

It was stated that the issue with International Studies and any other new program is accountability.  Do any of these new programs have an outcomes assessment?  What is our plan if we don’t meet our goals?  It was noted that this is the concern with China—at what point do we decide it is working?  What do we do if it is not?  The staff in the Office of International Studies continues to expand.

 

It was noted that the goal of 200-300 international students in the near future is totally unrealistic.  Those students need a lot of support, and there is a huge cultural gap.  Chinese students may have come to MSU Billings for just one semester and then transferred to Bozeman.  How often does that happen?

 

It was suggested we need a chart of all the numbers of full-time faculty, part-time faculty, administrators, and staff, with trends over time.

 

The biggest concern among the faculty is that we are always being asked to do more, and we are not given permission to set other tasks aside.  We are grasping for more and more students, but that means more and more work for the faculty.  It was cited the Senate should ask Dr. Groseth how he plans to end the trend of “just get a bigger plate.”  The faculty are asked to do more, and when they respond by saying their plate is full they are told to just get a bigger plate.  It’s disrespectful.

 

Another concern is the COB faculty market adjustments being funded from the Foundation.  How is this sustainable in the future?

 

The Senate should ask Dr. Groseth for his thoughts on the relationship between the Chancellor and the faculty.

 

It was noted that the lack of staff for administrative support is becoming more and more of a problem.  These people are paid so little—we work them so hard they get sick and then they leave.

 

The question was raised as to why we should do all of this with our Interim Chancellor.  We may have a new Chancellor in 2011.  It was responded that we can set a precedent for whoever our Chancellor may be.

 

It was noted that there seems to be no communication whatsoever between I.T., Facilities Services, and Purchasing.  So much time is spent trying to sort out issues within academic departments because these people don’t talk to each other.

 

It was cited that faculty have not been a part of the decision-making process at MSUB.  We should hear Dr. Groseth’s vision to involve faculty in strategic planning and resource allocation.

 

Another concern involves online classes.  How do we know that the student signed up for the class is the one actually taking it?  There is no control for this, and we could lose accreditation over this kind of issue.

 

A final concern was noted regarding the common course numbering system and FLOCs.  Are the FLOCs here to stay?  Does Dr. Groseth think they are working?

 

 

The meeting adjourned at 4:36 p.m.

 

rjrm