Abstract of Feb. 11 Faculty Senate Meeting

Wednesday, February 13, 2013 - 1:59pm


Karen Stout, Faculty Senate President, called Senators to order at 4:08 pm. Senators accepted Senate minutes of January 28, 2013 and Standing Committee minutes, which included an ACC motion asking the Senate to comment on inclement weather recommendations, and an ATC motion recommending that the university switch from Blackboard to Canvas.


·      President Stout:1) Please send recommendations for the inclement weather FAQ to Stout and she will forward to the chair of ACC; 2) The review of Dean Carbajal is complete, he has been provided with his information, and the review survey has gone out for Dean Guyette.   The Executive Council is discussing how much survey results are to be shared with larger groups of individuals; 3) An FAQ document is in preparation to answer questions connected with program review.

·      President Shepard: 1) The Dream Act would extend state-based financial aid to the state’s aspiring citizens and builds on the persuasive argument that national wealth is best measured by the talent of its people; 2) Washington ranks 50th out of 50 in student support and is squandering an opportunity and undermining its own self-interest by failure to fund education; 3) Western ranks 1st in the nation for Peace Corps volunteers among its peer institutions; 4)  It is important to resist the legislative pendulum swing toward understanding higher education as simply job training. “It is not higher education unless it is put to higher purposes.”

·      Vice Provost Steven VanderStaay: 1) Since rebuilding the Fulbright program, we now have eight finalists; a very large group.  VanderStaay expressed gratitude to faculty who nominate students and who come in on weekends to help students prepare, and noted that sophomore year is the time to consider applying.

·      UFWW President Steven Garfinkle:  1) A forum will be held in March for final discussion of the representation fee before moving to a vote;  2) Compression and equity funds (reached through a complex formula in which faculty are compared with a national peer group) will be paid retroactively (to September 2012) in the March 25th paycheck.  The agreement with administration promises 100% transparency and could become a model in academe.  An email to faculty in the first week of March will describe details;  UFWW is available to answer questions.

·      ASVP-Academics Victor Celis: 1) the AS would like recommendations from faculty for the next student trustee for the BOT; 2) the Green Energy Fee Committee is introducing small grant projects in amounts from $500 to $2000.


·      Eric Kean presented his site itsmorethanatextbook.com, an online platform for interactive e-texts, which provides low cost text books written by faculty for specific pedagogical purposes.  Sandra Alfers, one of three authors who have created textbooks on the platform, explained her use in the classroom and cost savings to students.  Senators suggested electronic publishing must be discussed by departments as contributing to T&P categories of publication, professional service, and teaching.

·      Senators heard Patrick Stickney, ASVP for Governmental Affairs, present additional information on legislative proposals related to the Dream Act. He pointed out that the small increase in the pool of eligible students (due to proposals that would allow undocumented students to apply) is less than the impact of proposals for WGU students to be eligible for the State Need Grant.  Stickney asked for faculty support for the March 14 rally in the PAC plaza, which will focus on increasing funding support for higher education.

MOTION:  Revision to Faculty Handbook, Constitution BL 7.6.1:  Senators conducted a first vote to approve an addition to the membership of the Academic Technology committee as follows:  “k. One representative from Extended Education (non-voting)”, which passedA second vote will follow at the next Senate meeting following publication to the faculty.


Senators adjourned at 5:32 pm, and moved to a faculty caucus which concluded at 5:50 pm.


APPOINTMENTS AND ELECTIONS – Jackie Caplan-Auerbach, Officer

Vacancies:  1 CBE representative to serve on ATC