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Dean of the Faculty/Vice President for Academic Affairs
 

FACULTY MEETING

APRIL 30, 2004
GANNETT AUDITORIUM

MINUTES

President Philip A. Glotzbach called the meeting to order at 3:35 p.m.

President Glotzbach asked if there were any objections to the approval the April 2, 2004 Faculty Meeting; hearing no objections, the minutes were approved.

PRESIDENT’S REPORT

President Philip A. Glotzbach began his report by congratulating Reverend Stephen Butler Murray, College Chaplain and Associate Director of the Intercultural Center, for receiving his Ph.D. from Union Theological Seminary in New York jointly in systematic theology and in preaching, worship, and the arts. The title of his dissertation is Reclaiming Divine Wrath: An Apologetics for an Aspect of God Neglected by Contemporary Theology and Preaching. Professor Grace Burton from the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures has agreed to serve as Interim Dean of Studies during the 2004-05 academic year. Dean Pat Oles gave an update of things in Student Life/Student Affairs. David Hampton, a first-year student who fell from a third-story window of McClelland Hall on April 24 was released from the hospital and is at home recovering. He is expected to make a full recovery. There also have been newspaper reports regarding an incident over the past weekend involving several Skidmore students who were arrested on Woodlawn Avenue for possession of alcohol. In addition, one of those students took the Church of Christ sign and faces additional charges. It is expected that additional students residing off campus will be arrested for serving alcohol to underage students. It is hoped that Skidmore’s message to students and the community is that if students serve alcohol to their classmates who are under 21, they will be charged with serving alcohol to minors.

President Glotzbach attended the Student Leadership Banquet held on April 28. He was impressed with the students who were honored. These students are making a positive difference at Skidmore. A greater number of students take their education seriously and are contributing to Skidmore. On behalf of the Honors Council and the Academic Festival Planning Committee, President Glotzbach encouraged everyone to attend Academic Festival on Wednesday, May 5. Academic Festival is a marvelous compilation of student work and presents a perfect opportunity for faculty to demonstrate how seriously they take their students’ work. President Glotzbach remarked that he intends to try to attend as many sessions as he can. Members of the Academic Festival Planning Committee were recognized and thanked for their work: Professor Phil Boshoff, Honors Forum Director; Professor Dan Curley of Classics; three students: Leah Elliott '06, Sara Shiffman '06, and Sebastian Fica '07; Professor Kate Greenspan of English; Tina Levith, Associate Director of Dean of Studies; and Anita Steigerwald, Associate Dean of Students and Dean of First-Year Students.  President Glotzbach then gave an update on the comprehensive fund raising campaign. A number of resolutions relating to the campaign will be presented to the Board of Trustees when they are on campus next week. The leadership structure for the campaign committee is in place and will be presented to the Board for approval. The administration will be asking the Trustees to authorize the campaign formally and to endorse a campaign target (a range).

Skidmore has received a $1.5 million gift to the Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery to endow the curator’s position currently held by Ian Berry. At this point, the donor wishes to remain anonymous. The overall endowment of the Tang stands at approximately $5 million, one portion of which is a planned gift. President Glotzbach would like to see this endowment raised to $10 million over the course of the campaign. The catalog for the Hair show at the Tang has been awarded honorable mention in the 2004 American Association of Museum publication competition. This is the third year in a row that Skidmore has won an award for a Tang catalog from the AAM. The President congratulated Professor Penny Jolly and everyone else associated with this project.

President Glotzbach gave an update on the Operating Budget through a PowerPoint presentation. The Operating Budget for fiscal year 2004 currently shows a surplus of $1.9 million. There are three main drivers for the surplus: 1) Improved student retention (Skidmore is currently fifteen students ahead of the expected target), 2) Lower utilization of financial aid, (only 35 percent of Skidmore’s entering students required financial aid, 40 percent was planned in the budget although this factor is not expected to repeat in upcoming years), and 3) Endowment performance. Skidmore’s endowment in September 2002 was $142 million with the budget being built on the assumption that the endowment would reach $160 million this year. But, in fact, on December 31, 2003 the endowment had reached $172 million with a present projected increase to approximately $180 million. The improved endowment performance resulted in additional endowment income available. (For the complete report, please see Attachment A.)

A question was raised concerning the under utilization of financial aid. Skidmore accepts 46 percent of its applicant pool; however, Skidmore is losing some of those applicants to other institutions who offer more-generous financial aid packages. This is one reason why financial aid must be a major priority in the upcoming campaign. A question was asked about access to information regarding salary and wage cuts and unfilled positions. President Glotzbach answered that a total of approximately 32 positions have been cut across the College, none of which was a faculty position. These employees were not laid off; the cuts were accomplished by attrition. Approximately 12 to 15 were union represented positions, the rest were administrative professional staff, support staff, etc.

Michael Hall, Director of Financial Planning and Budgeting, offered information regarding the improvement in enrollment in the abroad programs as was mentioned on one of the PowerPoint slides. The projected enrollment was more favorable than was planned. Both the Skidmore in France and the Skidmore in Madrid programs had increased enrollments. A question was asked on the subject of cuts in benefits and cost sharing measures for health insurance carrying through to next fiscal year. President Glotzbach answered that measures have been included in the 2005 budget. A concern was raised as to whether this would mean there would be less pressure in the future for further cuts. President Glotzbach said this will be determined in the out years in based on relevant financial indicators. He explained further, that there is a projected increase in cost sharing for benefits, but there is also a prediction for increased salary and wages. There is approximately $500,000 in the Fiscal Year 2005 budget for program enhancements. Next year’s budget also contains a four percent general salary adjustment. President Glotzbach stated that it is remarkable that Skidmore has not had to touch the contingency funds in the budget. Skidmore has a relatively small contingency fund: $1,050,000 for next year for a $90 million budget.

President Glotzbach presented the proposal for using the surplus funds. The proposal was discussed with the Board of Trustees and FPPC. Both FPPC and the full board have unanimously approved the President’s recommendations. First, the internal loan of $362,000 that was taken out at the end of the 2002 fiscal year to balance that year’s budget will be repaid. Approximately $715,000 will be transferred to capital projects and reserves in part to make up for previous shortfalls. Approximately $830,000 will go toward a one-time discretionary bonus of 2 percent for all employees including union-represented employees. This bonus will not be added to base salaries. This is not a precedent for the use of other surpluses in future years.

A question was raised as to why the $500,000 surplus in contingency funds was not included in the $1.9 million surplus figure. President Glotzbach explained that the $500,000 couldn’t be included because it needs to remain where it is to be sure it isn’t needed until the close of the budget. Professor Susan Lehr thanked President Glotzbach.

DEAN OF THE FACULTY'S REPORT

Dean Charles M. Joseph began his report by referring to the recent community meetings that have been held for the purpose of providing information regarding salaries and possible market adjustments. For individuals in Academic Affairs, the traditional salary letters with this information may be a bit delayed going out because Academic Affairs is such a large group of employees.

Dean Joseph asked Professor Roy Ginsberg, Chair of the Committee on Appointments, Promotions and Tenure to present a resolution to the assembly regarding three faculty colleagues.

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: Professor Jacqueline A. Azzarto, Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Social Work; Senior Teaching Associate Anne M. Wagner, Department of Chemistry; and Dean of Studies and Associate Dean of Student Affairs, Jon Robert Ramsey. The faculty further resolves that the biographical highlights of these members contained in the Retirement Citation booklet distributed at this meeting be included in the Faculty Meeting Minutes of April 30, 2004 in recognition and celebration of their distinguished service and achievement. (See Attachment B)

Dean Joseph then asked the faculty members present to signal their assent and acclamation by applause in adopting the resolution. Dean Joseph also announced that Judy McCormack, will also retire from her position as Director of the Counseling Center, and she will be missed greatly. Dean Pat Oles introduced Judy and gave a brief synopsis of her contributions to Skidmore and thanked her for her dedication and service. The following faculty members introduced the following retirees and gave a brief synopsis of each of their contributions: Professor Susan Walzer for Jackie Azzarto; Vasantha Narasimhan for Anne Wagner; and Dean Joseph for Jon Ramsey. President Glotzbach presented gifts to the retirees.

Dean Joseph also mentioned that there are approximately 20 other valued colleagues that will be leaving Skidmore; those who serve in adjunct or temporary capacities. There are also a few tenured colleagues who have made other choices who will not be with Skidmore next year: Professor Timothy Koechlin from Economics and Professor Eric Lewis from Management and Business who have chosen to teach and work at other institutions. Also, Senior Artist-inResidence, John Moore from Art and Art History, who has been with Skidmore for a decade, has elected to return to
New York to continue his work. He thanked these colleagues for their contributions.

Dean Joseph addressed the subject of Academic Vision and the First-Year Experience. Together with the Committee on Educational Policies and Planning (CEPP), it is recognized that there is a need for further discussions to enhance the proposal so that the faculty of Skidmore can support and endorse the proposal. If a vote on the proposal is delayed to allow for further discussion and reflection over the summer months, Dean Joseph stated there must be closure at the October 1faculty meeting so that implementation of the plan can occur in the fall of 2006.

Dean Joseph discussed the recent “Report on the Harvard College Curricular Review” (See Attachment C). The report outlines Harvard’s commitment to a new configuration of its undergraduate curriculum. While the report claims to contain several groundbreaking ideas, many of those ideas are similar to those that Skidmore has endorsed.

REPORTS

Roy Ginsberg, Chair of the Committee on Appointments, Promotions and Tenure presented a standing committee report. (See Attachment D.) The annual report was followed by a motion to adopt a resolution offered by CAPT and made by Professor Lary Opitz. Professor Opitz read the resolution and rationale. (See Attachment E.) The motion did not require a second. President Glotzbach reminded everyone that in discussion and debate of this motion, individuals involved in this matter would be limited as to what they were permitted to discuss for reasons of confidentiality. He also stated that he has great respect for those colleagues who are working on CAPT this year and that although he does not have a vote in the matter, he would support the motion to adopt the resolution as he agrees with the principles.

President Glotzbach surrendered the chair to Dean Joseph. Professor Mark Huibregtse was appointed parliamentarian for this motion. Discussion and debate ensued during the course of which Professor Penny Jolly made a motion to adjourn the meeting. The motion was seconded. A secondary motion was made to vote by paper ballot. The motion to vote by paper ballot was seconded and passed by majority vote. Paper ballots were distributed, collected, and tallied by members of the Committee on Faculty Governance. Dean Joseph read the tellers’ report.

Number of votes cast: 120
Votes for motion: 59
Votes against: 60
Abstentions: 1
The motion failed.

During the continuation of debate, Dean Joseph surrendered the chair to Professor John Anzalone, a representative of CFG. A motion to call the question was made and seconded. The question was put to a vote by voice; the result being inconclusive. The question was then put to a vote by a show of hands. The motion to adopt the resolution offered by CAPT passed by majority vote.

OLD BUSINESS

MOTION:

Professor John Anzalone, on behalf of the Committee on Faculty Governance, asked that action on these motions be postponed until the May 19 Faculty Meeting. (See Attachment F for the full text and rationale of the motions.)

MOTION 1: CFG moves that the Financial Policy and Planning Committee (FPPC) be eliminated as of the end of the 2003-04 academic year.
MOTION 2: CFG moves that the membership of the Institutional Planning Committee (IPC) for the 2004-5 academic year be modified.

A formal motion to postpone action on these motions was not made; however, hearing no objection to the postponement, the motions will be voted on at the May 19 faculty meeting.

NEW BUSINESS

MOTION:

CFG moves the following change in Part One of the Faculty Handbook, Section XX (Procedures for Handbook Amendments), Paragraph D, last sentence (strike-through language is removed, bold language is added): “Revisions to Part Three will be adopted once the All-College Council Institutional Planning Committee (IPC), the Student Government Association (SGA), and the
Committee on Faculty Governance (CFG) have agreed upon the revisions.” (See Attachment G.)

Coming from the Committee, the motion required no second and will lie over until the next meeting.

MOTION:

Professor Gordon Thompson, on behalf of the Committee on Educational Policies and Planning (CEPP) moved to postpone the vote on the motion to endorse a First-Year Experience Proposal until the October 1, 2004 faculty meeting. Coming from the Committee, the motion required no second and hearing no objection to the postponement, the motion will lie over until the October 1, 2004 faculty meeting. (See Attachment H for the full text and rationale of the motion.)

OTHER BUSINESS

There was no other business

ANNOUNCEMENTS


The meeting was adjourned at 5:55 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,


Colleen M. Kelly
Executive Secretary
Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculty

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