ACADEMIC SENATE RETREAT MINUTES
DATE: August 30, 2010
PRESENT: Don Larsen Sandie Rietz
Paul Bauer Rakesh Sah
Lorrie Steerey Craig McKenzie
Doug Brown Mark Hardt
Bruce Brumley Patricia Vettel-Becker
Gary Young (ex-officio)
ABSENT: Stephen Eliason* Keith Edgerton*
GUEST: Rolf Groseth
PRESIDING: Lorrie Steerey, Chair
Lorrie Steerey called the meeting to order at 12:10 p.m. in the Missouri room.
I. Introduction of Interim Provost Gary Young and Interim Chancellor Rolf Groseth
Provost Young stated that he is looking forward to working with the Senate this year. He noted that his management style is to “catch people doing things right,” and encouraging and empowering people to spread leadership. He encouraged the Senator to join in his Provost Council meetings.
Chancellor Groseth thanked the Senators for their service. Shared governance doesn’t work unless there are people willing to put themselves out and represent others. This is a legislative year, and it may not be a difficult one. Often, the years when there is no money to fight over, the legislative session goes very smoothly! He will push hard, as will all parties, for salary increases for the next biennium. It was noted that four years without an increase will be the longest we have ever gone without an increase, should that occur this legislative session. He noted that getting the increases will not be an easy task.
We have a lot of students at our door this fall, and so we are likely to have more tuition dollars than in past years as a result. Dr. Groseth is very optimistic that we will continue to hold onto those students through the year, and we have a high number of returning students as well. Dr. Groseth noted that the Board of Regents is currently reviewing our mission statement.
Chancellor Groseth stated he wants to look at and improve the decision-making process here at MSUB, making it more predictable for all involved. He wants to hear new ideas and he appreciates the give and take of debate—that’s what we as a University do best. He wants to hear from the faculty, whether the comments are positive or negative.
Provost Young noted that this will be a challenging year, but also a year of opportunity. What we do this year will impact MSUB for years to come.
Dr. Groseth asked for any comments about how the Senate, the faculty unions, and the administration come together, and how they clash. It was noted that in past years we had the Academic Senate/Faculty Association Coalition (ASFAC) which was formed to share information between those groups; however, the COT union was missing from this group. The intent was to meet with the administration not to make decisions but to share information. Instead, there was a lot of lecturing, so the committee fell apart. This group should be reinvented and the effort should begin again. Provost Young noted that he would like to set up some listening sessions with himself and the Senate. He also noted that in many cases with the Senate, other committees, and the unions, the same people are serving. Are the faculty best represented this way? It was cited that junior faculty should be invited to serve and the Senate should review all committees to make sure they are still needed. We should create a something positive, a structure that will be in place when we have a new Chancellor and Provost hired. We should also have a clear delineation of which committees are involved with shared governance, and which are labor committees.
The question was raised as to what groups will be involved with the budget process. Dr. Groseth responded that often we do end up in a time crunch because the legislature finishes meeting in April and the new budget year begins in July. However, what we need to do is work together to decide what our real priorities are. Dr. Young noted that not just academics will be on the table, but every program across campus. It was cited that there were lengthy budget and prioritization discussions two years ago, but those were put aside and budget decisions were made. Provost Young stated that he would like to pick up where that group left off.
The Senate thanked Chancellor Groseth and Provost Young for attending.
II. DISCUSSION/ACTION ITEMS
A. Resume ASFAC Meetings
This topic will be on the first Senate agenda, September 16. The Senate should meet with the unions to create a committee which adequately represents all groups. Perhaps it could be called a University Governors Committee.
B. RACE Committee Name Change
The acronym “RACE” seems inappropriate.
Ž Motion by Rakesh Sah, seconded by Doug Brown to change the name of the Academic Senate Research and Creative Endeavor (RACE) Committee to the Creative and Research Endeavors (CARE) Committee.
Ž Motion carried.
C. Reading Course (RD 101) for All Students
Sandie Rietz noted that she has data she needs to share with the Senate. It was noted that the retention consultant on campus agrees requiring a reading course for all students is a great idea. Seventy percent of our incoming students need some kind of remedial coursework. It was cited that the proposal right now is that students would take the COMPASS test, as the normally do, and if they scored below a 70 they would be required to take RD 101. If they scored higher, they would, in effect, test out of RD 101. It was agreed that further discussion is needed.
D. Campus Common Course Numbering (CCN) Process
It was noted that last spring Bill Macgregor and Sarah Elkins were here on campus and stated that they did not want to control the curriculum, but faculty were responsible for meeting with their FLOC to discuss possible curriculum changes. This may even happen before the campus process begins. A campus process needs to be devised. It was cited that although they claim it is not, this is control by the University System of our curriculum.
E. BOR in Butte in September
With Lorrie Steerey’s health, she cannot attend the meeting alone. Dr. Rietz agreed to attend as well.
The meeting adjourned at 1:38 p.m.