April 25, 2003
President Jamienne Studley called the meeting to order at 3:38 p.m.
A motion to approve the April 4, 2003 Faculty Meeting minutes was seconded and passed with all in favor.
President Studley opened by stating that we are approaching the home stretch of this academic year. The Honors Convocation was a successful and special event held to celebrate the work of students and faculty. The Presidents’ Awards were awarded to Roberta Chramoff, staff member of the Dean of Students Office; Virginia Scavuzzo, staff member of the HEOP Office; Chanel Luck '03, student; Craig Hyland '05, student; Betty Balevic, faculty member; Patricia Rubio, faculty member; and the Dean of Faculty's Office, staff award. President Studley also informed everyone that she has been monitoring the '03 budget to see that Skidmore remains in the black. She thanked everyone for his or her cooperation to help the budget close in balance. Her other final projects include supporting a smooth transition and giving shape to Skidmore’s diversity work. She is working with Jack Ling, Ray Rodrigues and Joe Stankovich to prepare a summary of diversity activities and results over the last five years since the last time such a report was done was in 1997. The purpose of the report is to summarize the status of diversity efforts and identify issues for future consideration and attention. The report will be sent to relevant parties for review and comments.
DEAN OF THE FACULTY'S REPORT
Dean Joseph began by introducing Penny Jolly on behalf of CAPT (Committee on Appointments, Promotions and Tenure) who presented the following resolution.
BE IT RESOLVED, the faculty of Skidmore College expresses its profound appreciation and admiration for the following members of the Skidmore Faculty who have this year expressed their determination to retire. The faculty further resolves that the following biographical highlights be included in the Faculty Meeting Minutes of April 25, 2003 as recognition and celebration of distinguished service and achievement. (See Attachment A.)
Dean Joseph then asked the faculty mmbers to signal their assent and acclamation by applause. The following faculty members introduced the following retirees and gave a brief synopsis of each of their contributions: Terry Diggory for Barry Goldensohn; Bernie Possidente for Loretta Parsons; and Don McCormack for Larry Ries.
President Studley presented gifts to the retirees.
Dean Joseph then continued with mentioning a sampling of positive things that have happened. There are two recipients for next year for CASTL grants, Kate Berheide and Michael Marx have been selected as Carnegie Scholars for next year for the Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. Expanding Horizons recently received a grant from the Charitable Venture Foundation to support Skidmore's Junior Great Books Program. Expanding Horizons also received a pledge from the parents of two recent graduates. A grant from AT&T was awarded to Skidmore for $49,000 in support of the new lab and curriculum in Math and Computer Science. Associate Dean Sarah Goodwin spoke about Fred Wilson, the new Luce Distinguished Fellow in Object, Exhibition and Knowledge. He will be here for one semester a year for three years. Dean Goodwin wanted to alert everyone that they would be looking for faculty participation in developing projects.
Dean Joseph reminded everyone that Academic Festival was coming up on Wednesday, April 30. Schedules for presidential candidates have been arranged in coordination with the Academic Festival schedule. Dean Joseph also thanked everyone for their participation and work throughout this difficult year.
Dean Joseph discussed the Budget and Finance Committee Meeting held on April 14 in New York City. It was a working session in which people spoke very openly about concerns and issues. FPPC's proposed two percent GSA (general salary adjustment) was discussed for the next fiscal year. Other options were also discussed such as beginning a two-percent GSA mid-year and the possibility of a one-time payment to lower paid employees. Dean Joseph thought about the issue at length, he considered what the Trustees said, and he consulted with colleagues on President's Staff. Dean Joseph advised that President's Staff is recommending a $700 one-time payment in December for the lowest paid employees. Where the line will be drawn defining who will be included in that category is still to be determined. He advised that he is aware of how disappointing this may be, and questions and concerns should be directed directly to Dean Joseph. He believes this will provide the best pathway for the new president. Dean Joseph also advised that he thinks that the faculty need to work toward better communications between themselves and the Trustees.
Dean Joseph mentioned that the first presidential candidate would be arriving Tuesday, April 29. He encouraged everyone to be straightforward, give the candidate a fair perspective of where Skidmore is, and to be encouraging and to be good citizens.
JIM KENNELLY – FPPC:
Jim reported that the faculty members of FPPC, as a result of the frustration experienced this year, sent a request to CFG to look at the possibility of restructuring FPPC. Jim also stated that as Chair of FPPC he has no plans to call any further meetings this year. He believes this is a good time to step back, cool off, sort things out and see where FPPC stands. Regarding the 2004 budget, there wasn't much to report other than it was not one of the ones FPPC proposed. Jim also wanted to note that the recent figure of $900,000 a year being representative of the cost of a two-percent GSA is inaccurate, as he feels that the benefits give-backs would make the figure somewhat less. Jim also mentioned the ad hoc group convened in March for the purpose of trying to look at financial statements and numbers did not work out. The effort should be revisited in the fall. The recommendation of the Benefits Committee was endorsed by FPPC and FPPC thanks the committee for their hard work. Jim feels that the work of the Benefits Committee has just begun. On March 25 a meeting was held with the external consultants regarding salaries and wages. FPPC is waiting for more information to come from them possibly during the second week of May. Again this is something that FPPC should come back to in the fall.
A comment was made by Mehmet Odekon that faculty members on the FPPC are not numerically challenged: a Management-Business, an Economics, a Math-Computer Science, and an Exercise Science faculty are on the FPPC. FPPC looked very carefully and responsibly into the sources to finance the two percent GSA increase and only when the FPPC was confident that Skidmore could do it was the GSA increase recommended. The committee feels the suggested zero percent GSA is a result of policy and choice.
The issue of morale was raised in which Dean Joseph advised that he is counting on the new president to contain the erosion of morale. Gove Effinger, on behalf of CFG, acknowledged that CFG did receive a request from FPPC to review the function of the committee. Ideally this should have been done this year, however, due to a lack of time it will be dealt with next year. Gove praised the work of Jim Kennelly for his perseverance and dedication to FPPC during this very difficult year.
A question was raised as to what happens from now until the end of the year in terms of their being no FPPC meetings. Jim advised that most business had been concluded, and after the endorsement of the Benefits Committee recommendation, an annual report would be done. However, as chair, he advised no further meetings would be called.
CAROLYN ANDERSON – Presidential Search Committee Progress Report:
Carolyn began by informing the faculty that there would be a demonstration of new software. In April nine candidates were interviewed. Two candidates would be brought to campus. The search process will remain open and additional candidates may still be invited to campus. Copies of materials for candidates will be made available. Members of Presidents Staff, every department chair and program director, and the Library have the materials for the first candidate. These materials are not available on the web, may not be photocopied, and must be returned to the Search Committee after use. Dates for the first candidate's visit are April 29, 30 and departure in the early afternoon of May 1. The second candidate will be visiting on May 4, 5, and 6. The Committee expressed its appreciation to Phil Boshoff and Michael Arnush for their understanding about the unavoidable conflicts with Academic Festival. The Presidential Search Committee faculty representatives continue to meet with CFG regarding scheduling and with CAPT regarding their involvement in the process.
Some concern was raised as to why the schedule for the first candidate was so packed and why there was not a meeting between the candidate and just the faculty. It was explained that the scheduling was complicated to begin with, committees were represented in terms of faculty, and because of time constraints it was important to break those groups up into their various areas and then have the faculty participate in the open forum. The name of the second candidate is still confidential and could not be released at this meeting. The Committee has decided that only one visit per candidate is desired at this time, but that could be changed if it is determined another visit would be beneficial. Both candidates are from outside of Skidmore.
Brett Ingerman gave a demonstration of Fuse Talk Bulletin Board for threaded discussions. The main link will be from the Presidential Search web site. There will be a page of instructions, then a login page. Who you are and how you login will determine what you will have access to. Faculty/staff will not be able to see student discussion, students will not be able to see faculty/staff discussions, everyone will be able to see the general campaign discussion and members of the Presidential Search Committee can see all discussions. The official tools of communication with the Presidential Search Committee are by e-mail (email@example.com) for individual feedback, two open fora after all of the candidates’ visits are complete, and the third is Fuse Talk.
GOVE EFFINGER – Transitions Committee – ad hoc group
The Transitions Committee had three meetings and have been discussing issues such as what specific events in the future should be included in the transition, such as graduation, various summer events, alumni weekend, convocation in the fall, etc. and how those might fit in. They are also discussing what types of information a new president will need and how and when it should be delivered. Greater faculty presence is needed on the committee; two more members are desired. CFG will be sending out a willingness to serve within a week. The positions are appointed. This will involve work over the summer.
GOVE EFFINGER – Mellon Faculty Development Grant Report
There are seven focus groups consisting of different groups of faculty plus one focus group with trustees. The committee is trying to distill that information down to some specific set of problems that are seen to be particularly key in order to create a specific set of initiatives that Skidmore may ask Mellon to help us with. Faculty will be asked for feedback regarding initiatives. It is expected to have Skidmore's part of the grant drafted by mid summer. By mid August, representatives from all four colleges will get together for a two-day retreat when the grant proposal will be put together. The grant will be no more than $150,000 per year for Skidmore over a three-year period.
GRACE BURTON – IPC – Comparison Group Subcommittee
On April 18 the subcommittee reported to IPC its recommendations. President's Staff is now reviewing those recommendations. The list is not yet definitive. The list was subdivided into two distinct lists: a peer list and a close-aspirant group. Each list has its own usefulness and should be kept distinct. Possible peer list consists of: Vassar, Colgate, Hamilton, Oberlin, Bates, Trinity, Kenyon, Connecticut College, Franklin and Marshall, Union, Dickinson and Gettysburg. Possible close-aspirant group consists of: Bowdoin, Middlebury, Haverford, Wesleyan and Colby. Both lists may be changed.
There was no old business
Pat Fehling, on behalf of CEPP, introduced a motion that Skidmore establish the Skidmore in Beijing Program at Peking University inBeijing, China. (See Attachment B.)
Pat Fehling, on behalf of CEPP, requested that the faculty set aside the layover period so that the faculty may vote on the proposed Skidmore in Beijing Program at the April 25, 2003 Faculty Meeting. The motion required no second. The motion was passed with a majority voting in favor. Pat resumed speaking about the primary motion. The floor was opened for discussion. The motion required no second. The motion was voted on and passed with all in favor.
Penny Jolly, on behalf of CAPT, introduced a motion for revision of a portion of the language in the Faculty Handbook in Section X, Part A, Subpart 2, Paragraph c on page 126. Penny read the motion into the record. (SeeAttachment C.) The motion will lie over until the May 14th Faculty Meeting.
Gove Effinger, on behalf of CFG, introduced a motion for revision of a portion of the language in the Faculty Handbook in Section X, Part A, Subpart 2, Paragraph b on page 126. Gove read the motion into the record. (See Attachment D.) The motion will lie over until the May 14th Faculty Meeting.
Gove Effinger, on behalf of CFG, introduced a motion for language to be added to the description of CAPT's membership on page 212 of the Faculty Handbook. Gove read the motion into the record. (See Attachment D.) The motion will lie over until the May 14th Faculty Meeting.
There was no other business.
- President Studley announced that Scott Minkoff will be the new president of the Student Government Association for the 2003-04 academic year. Nick Merrill will continue as Vice President for Academic Affairs for the 2003-04 academic year.
- Academic Festival will be held Wednesday, April 30 from 11:00 to 5:00 p.m. Phil asked that a moratorium be called on all committee meetings in order to allow students to attend Academic Festival. Academic Festival Schedule of Event programs were provided at this meeting. A forthcoming e-mail will have details regarding events and venues. An online assessment forum will be used at the conclusion of the festival to gather feedback for improvement for next year's Academic Festival.
- John invited everyone to attend the "Homemade Dance Party" to be held Friday, May 2 at 8:00 p.m. in Aikins Dining Hall. The Rust Brothers would be performing. RSVP's were encouraged.
- Dean Joseph invited the faculty to a reception sponsored by Dean of Faculty's Office to be held at the Surrey Williamson Inn in honor of the retirees.
The meeting was adjourned at 5:35 p.m.
Colleen M. Kelly
Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs
and Dean of the Faculty