Faculty Senate Minutes

May 23, 2006


  1. Meeting called to order at 3:35 PM

    1. Call of roll: Senate members present: Charles Anderson, Kit Andrews, Mary Bucy, David Foster, Camila Gabaldón, Terry Gingerich, Mary Harden, Robert Hautala, Jessica Henderson, Ryan Hickerson, Klay Kruzchek, Elisa Maroney, Chloe Myers, Peggy Pedersen, Emily Plec, Uma Shrestha, Tracy Smiles, Doug Smith, Max Geier, John Rector (Faculty Senate President), Mark Weiss (for President Minahan)

  2. Minutes for previous meetings approved

  3. Reports of Presidents

    1. President of Faculty Senate, John Rector

      1. Next Faculty Senate Meeting will be July 11 in Hamersly at 3:30 PM

      2. Thanks to Faculty Senators for keeping on track. The two retreats at the first of the year were helpful, and will try to schedule one for next year. It is important for the Faculty Senate to continue to set its own goals for the year.

      3. Thanks to the members of the Senate Executive Committee (Camila Gabaldón, Mary Bucy, Robert Hautala, Keller Coker, and Kit Andrews) for their work preparing meetings. They have been essential for getting the work of the Senate done.

    2. Mark Weiss (for John Minahan, President of WOU)

      1. Clips circulated from Oregon newspapers show that budget problems are general to all 7 OUS campuses except UO.

      2. OUS Board policy for each campus is to maintain approximately a 10% fund balance. The fund balance is the total assets minus the total liabilities.

      3. Amount of funding continues to decrease.

      4. WOU budget and goals:

        1. July 1, 2005 fund balance was 14%.

        2. July 1, 2006 project 7% fund balance.

        3. If current trends continue, projected fund balance for July 1, 2007, projected 0-1%.

        4. WOU must have at least 5% fund balance at end of next year, and tell OUS board we are striving for 10%.

        5. Budget reductions needed:

          • $300,000 Supplies and Services Budget,

          • $400,000 Instructional Budget ($300,000-350,000 from College of LAS, $100,000 from College of Education)

          • $400,000 Non-instructional salaries

        6. Funding increases needed:

          • $500,000 support from WOU Foundation

          • $1,000,000 from enrollment increases

    3. Enrollment Update (presented by David McDonald, Dean of Admissions, Retention, and Enrollment Management)

      1. Currently a slight decrease in Oregon residents for fall

        1. Enrollment decreases throughout OUS and Washington

          • No firm sense of causes for this change.

      2. Non-resident numbers are up.

        1. Overall, the situation is as good as we could be, and better than other OUS campuses. The numbers are soft, but the direction is positive.

  4. Old Business

    1. LAS Update (presented by Dean Scheck)

      1. 2 different budgets discussed here: current budget (which ends June 30, 2006) and next year’s budget.

      2. From current budget, returned $10,000 from Supplies and Services budget.

      3. For next year’s budget, returned $30,000 from Supplies and Services budget, making 10% reduction for divisions ($15,000 from departments, $15,000 from divisions’ and Dean’s budget). This reduces the Dean’s discretionary fund by half, the Division Chair’s discretionary budget by one third.

      4. Goal for cutting of adjunct faculty budget currently $81,000 short. This will be done over 3 terms.

        1. Urge students to enroll early. This will mean a culture shift. If students wait until fall to register for a course, they may find the course gone.

      5. Questions from Chloe Myers: Will there be cuts in growth areas as well? Where do you see the History Masters proposal in relation to these reductions?

        1. Dean Scheck: A course that will generate all new enrollment can be offered. For the History Masters proposal there are certain “check-off” issues (including academic quality). If these are met, no problem in supporting it.

      6. Question from Terry Gingrich: Should the department chairs start meeting with you?

        1. Dean Scheck: Yes, they can start making appointments.

      7. Question from David Foster: How will the process work come dead week?

        1. Dean Scheck: Department and division chairs are in constant communication concerning course enrollment. They will bring recommendations to the Dean.

    2. History MA Proposal (presented by Ben Lowe)

      1. The proposed MA program is revenue neutral. It will not need increased funding.

      2. It will not detract from undergraduate education; in fact, it will help recruit undergraduates.

      3. WOU history department is exceptionally strong.

      4. The worst case would that the MA program does not make as much money as we would like.

      5. It will not only benefit the history department, but other department as well, in particular modern languages.

      6. Question from Peggy Pedersen: What are current figures for history majors taking licensure and going to graduate school?

        1. Max Geier: 10-15 students do an initial licensure. Of history graduates last year, 6 went into MAT program. This means a total of bout 15-20 each year of WOU graduates that would be potential students.

      7. Concerns about the 4 consecutive terms option from the Humanities Division, presented by Emily Plec included:

        1. Whether there will be sufficient variety in combined graduate and undergraduate courses so that students who already have taken 400 level courses in history at WOU as undergraduates do not have to repeat courses,

        2. If the mixing of graduate and undergraduate courses might result in overloads,

        3. Whether there will be enough 600 level courses in this format,

        4. If there will be content overlap for students who have already taken 300 level courses and are now taking the newly named 400/500 level courses.

      8. Ben Lowe noted that these issues have come up and been addressed already.

      9. Question from Peggy Pedersen: How are you planning to attract non-traditional students with only one evening course?

        1. Ben Lowe: Some online courses may also be offered.

      10. Motion to approve the History MA proposal seconded and passed: 16 votes in favor, 3 abstentions, 0 against.

  5. New Business

    1. Nominating Committee Report: Ballots have been passed out.

    2. Senate Committee Reports:

      1. International Education Committee (presented by Daryl Thomas, Chair)

        1. A busy year, during which the committee

          • Supported International Education Week,

          • Streamlined the process for new consortia programs (making more opportunities to study abroad available for students),

          • Approved 2 new OUS exchange programs (which have no additional cost to WOU)

            • The program at Ohida, Japan is an English speaking program (with courses taught in English)

          • Awarded 2 scholarships

        2. This year the number of WOU students going abroad is up.

        3. Newly approved programs will bring many international students to WOU.

      2. Academic Infrastructure Committee Report (presented by Steve Taylor, Chair)

        1. A list of smart rooms for next phase prepared

        2. 2 memos were dispersed to the Faculty Senate proposing:

          • An increase in the diversity of representation on the Student Technology Fee Committee (to add the appointment of 2 AIC faculty members, and to increase number of student members to include one from each division),

          • An expansion of wireless access for faculty and students.

        3. Communication with administration on academic infrastructure remains a big issue. The question persists whether this is going in a negative or positive direction.

      3. Curriculum Committee (presented by Jeff Myers, Chair)

        1. Next year’s chair will be Nick Backus.

        2. Thanks to Gay Tirnken for serving as secretary.

        3. A tremendous amount of work was made possible by the existing infrastructure.

        4. The committee increasingly needs to focus on mechanics and leave the content to the Senate.

        5. No new major/minor proposals approved, but many changes to existing degree programs.

    3. OUS General Education Committee Report (presented by Lonnie Guralnick)

        1. The Committee is looking at general areas concerning WOU, Community Colleges, and other OUS institutions, specifically examining criteria for identifying courses that meet outcomes.

        2. The Committee includes representatives from many areas on campus, and will come to all OUS Faculty Senates after courses are agreed on. It will probably take another 6 months for a more finalized document.

    4. Appointment to Admissions Marketing Committee

      1. John Rector thanked Mary Harden for agreeing to serve on this committee.

    5. Honors Program Report (postponed to next meeting)

    6. Integrated Science Program Change (presented by Lonnie Guralnick)

      1. Change needed because there are so few graduate students. It would provide for 21 hours to be agreed on with advisor.

    7. IFS Report (presented by Solveig Holmquist)

      1. Difficult to distill what is going on with IFS, so will send an outline with a link to IFS minutes.

      2. Current discussions include the following topics:

        1. Alignment toward student-centered education

        2. The big drop in rural population enrollment.

      3. IFS efforts have but faculty members (such as Lonnie Guralnick) on the articulation committee.

  6. Meeting adjourned at 5:00 PM.