March 4, 2005
President Philip A. Glotzbach called the meeting to order at 3:40 p.m.
President Glotzbach asked if there were any objections to the approval of the February 4, 2005 Faculty Meeting minutes; hearing no objections, the minutes were approved.
President Glotzbach opened his remarks by announcing Associate Professor Richard Linke
as the new holder of The Ella Van Dyke Tuthill '32 Chair in Studio Art. He also announced
that Pat Hilleren, Lubin Family Professor for Women in Science, recently received
a $720,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health. Assistant Professor Dan Nathan
and two American Studies students, Erin Klemyk '05 and Peter Berg '06 were awarded
the Walter Prescott ebb-Smith Prize for the best essay on history and film portraying
the past in cinema which was awarded by the
Department of History of the University of Texas at Arlington. On a different note, Skidmore’s Madrid Program has just celebrated its 25th anniversary. The program started in Barcelona and was the first US program to include direct enrollment in a Spanish university and is run collaboratively with Tufts University.
President Glotzbach thanked all of those who hosted a dinner for trustees. The trustees appreciated the opportunity to interact with members of the faculty in a more direct way. The Thursday session of the winter Board of Trustees meetings was used to discuss the third goal of the Strategic Plan, i.e., Responsible Citizenship. The Long-Range Planning Committee also discussed the Strategic Plan. The trustees were asked to postpone their formal approval of the Strategic Plan until the campus community conversations had concluded; however, the trustees did pass a motion of support for the plan. The proposed budget parameters were also approved. The proposed budget does include a three percent General Salary Adjustment (GSA) as well as funds to provide for salary increases resulting from promotions and the implementation of the next increment of the comprehensive compensation plan. The budget also includes a one-year deferral of the next-scheduled increase in cost sharing for health care. The budget will be finalized at the May Board meeting.
President Glotzbach is concerned about faculty salaries. Skidmore is losing candidates
because its salary offers are significantly below those of other schools. It was hoped
that the next step in the comprehensive compensation plan would ensure that Skidmore’s
faculty salaries would remain competitive; however, the plan will not advance those
salaries rapidly enough: Therefore, the situation will need to be addressed separately.
Salaries at the assistant ranks appear to be the largest segment of the problem, but
addressing the issue for new hires creates issues of equity for
current faculty members that also must be addressed. President Glotzbach explained that offers cannot conscientiously be made to new people at the expense of those who are already hired. Structural changes in Skidmore’s faculty salary system may also offer solutions. Mike West and Chuck Joseph are investigating possible solutions, and faculty are welcome to send them ideas and proposals. In order to meet this challenge, budget priorities may have to be reevaluated. Although a commitment has been made for new faculty positions, Skidmore must be prepared to pay a
fair salary; consequently, the timing of some searches may be adjusted.
Susan Kress, Vice Chair of the Institutional Planning Committee (IPC), stated that the committee will bring the final version of the Executive Summary of the Strategic Plan to the faculty at the first April Faculty Meeting. It is hoped that the faculty will have the opportunity to discuss and endorse the summary at the April 29 Faculty Meeting. President Glotzbach stated that work is continuing on other pieces of the plan. The financial analysis and prioritization of the initiatives will be completed by the May board meeting.
President Glotzbach acknowledged that there are a number of concurrent administrative changes occurring on campus possibly leading to a sense that things are unsettled. He assured everyone that the changes now being implemented should conclude, for the most part, by the end of this year and that future administrative changes will not continue at the present pace. He is expecting that once these changes are completed, focus and energy will be redirected to other priorities that still need to be addressed.
Mike West, Vice President for Finance and Administration, gave an update on the state of finances at Skidmore. He presented a PowerPoint presentation. (See Attachment A – click screen to advance through slides. NOTE: If the previous hyperlink does not work, please manually type or paste the following address in your browser window - http://www.skidmore.edu/administration/dof/campus-only/faculty/2004-05/03-04-05-SkidmoreFacultyPresentation.pps.)
Mike West also offered to meet with anyone who wished to discuss the report. A question
was raised as to the enrollment imbalance between the fall and spring semesters. Mike
West replied that in the fall term there are roughly 70 students over capacity; however,
in the spring term there are approximately 140 vacancies which results in lost revenue.
For every additional student retained in the second term, the only additional cost
there is is for their direct financial aid and raw food cost, but the personnel, space,
and heat costs remain the same. The programming and
scheduling of students going abroad is being reviewed and evaluated in order to alleviate a large number of students being off campus during the spring term.
DEAN OF FACULTY’S REPORT
Dean Charles M. Joseph opened his report by announcing that students had been invited to this meeting to participate in the discussion of the proposed change in the college expository writing requirement. Associate Professor Steve Frey, on behalf of the Faculty Development Committee, announced the 2005-06 Moseley Lecturer: Pola Baytleman, Senior Artist-in-Residence, Department of Music. Dean Joseph continued by announcing and congratulating the faculty members who recently received tenure: Carolyn Forché, Professor of English; and faculty members who received tenure and promotion to the level of Associate Professor: Kate Graney from Government, Mark Youndt from Management and Business, Elzbieta Lepkowska-White from Management and Business, and Linda Vargha from Economics. Kim Marsella was promoted to Senior Teaching Associate. The full list of tenure, reappointment, promotion, and sabbatical leaves can be found in Attachment B.
Dean Joseph thanked Mike West for his clear presentations to the Board of Trustees. He also spoke about the facultysearches that have been conducted as well as the ones that are still underway. There were 18 open tenure-track positions this year, six of which have been filled and three of those are diversity candidates. Some of those searches were closed down because an acceptable candidate was not identified. Several searches remain in progress, with pools of up to 200 applicants in some cases. Candidates are being lost for various reasons, salary being one of them, but also for other factors such as geographic location, etc. Dean Joseph is asking for ideas as to what can be done to attract more candidates besides salary. Candidates, generally, are not questioning the benefits package Skidmore has to offer. Dean Joseph stated he doesn’t mind losing candidates to large research universities, but he is concerned about losing candidates to Skidmore’s peer institutions. He is also concerned about salary equity for recent hires when addressing the problem of salaries for new hires.
ANN HENDERSON, Registrar’s Office
Ann announced that Skidmore’s billing and financial aid processes will go online beginning in June. Ann thanked the people in CITS for their help. This is Phase I of a many step process. In April the students will be registering in the registration area in Harder 101 after having met with faculty in a normal advising process. The Registrar’s Office will be present through all steps of the process this time around. After April 4, faculty will have access to student lists in a dynamically updated system. Class list information will be downloadable to Excel spreadsheets. At this point, the system can only be accessed through on-campus computers with an anticipated off-campus accessibility by next fall. Training opportunities will be offered during the weeks of March 21 and March 28, everyday from 12:00 Noon until 1:00 p.m. in Harder 101. During those two weeks, 5:00 sessions will also be held on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Department meetings can also be arranged. Department secretaries will have preferences on sign up times. Online tutorials are also available. Further information will be going out by email. President Glotzbach thanked Ann for her work on this project.
GORDON THOMPSON, Academic Affiliations
The “Guidelines for Academic Affiliations” document presented (see Attachment C) will be updated and revised with the relevant changes in the Dean of Studies Office structure and the reporting structure of the Office of International Programs. Domestic programs will be also covered under this document. CEPP will approve the Approved Programs List when it is completed. The program is financially feasible. Depending on the composition of the Approved Programs List, Skidmore will realize estimated net revenue of $400,000 annually. This revenue will go into Academic Affairs to support additional positions. The financial piece of the program was put in place to foremost ensure that travel abroad educational opportunities were available to all students and not just as an advantage to the College.
Professor Susan Kress, on behalf of the Committee on Faculty Governance (CFG), opened the floor for discussion of the following motion: the Committee on Faculty Governance moves that the words "The Malloy Curator of the Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery" be inserted in the Faculty Handbook’s list of administrators who may attend and vote in faculty meetings. (See Attachment D.) This motion was introduced at the last meeting. Discussion proceeded; the motion was put to a vote and carried with all in favor.
Professor Gordon Thompson, on behalf of the Committee on Educational Policies and
Planning (CEPP), opened the floor for discussion of the following motion: The Committee
Policies and Planning moves that the faculty adopt the following change in the college expository writing requirement: Replace the current college expository writing requirement that is fulfilled by completing EN 105, EN 105Honors, or a Writing Intensive course before the end of the student’s sophomore year with three Writing Enriched courses taken throughout the student’s college career. Those students who need to take EN 103 Writing Seminar I as preparation for meeting this requirement must do so by the end of their first year. (See Attachment E and Addendum – Attachment E.) Coming from the Committee, the motion required no second and will lie over until the next meeting. This motion was introduced at the last meeting.
CEPP subsequently offered a revised motion which was circulated by email during the previous week (see Attachment F) with the addendum remaining the same. The revision calls for continuation of one writing-intensive course to be completed by the end of the sophomore year, which preserves the current requirement and then adds two writing-enriched or writing-intensive courses. CEPP expressed its desire to conduct discussion of the motions at this meeting but at the end of that discussion, but then delay the voting on this motion until the April 1 meeting. This delay is proposed to allow for further discussion and for student input. Discussion proceeded.
A point of order was called: If a new revised motion has been introduced, would it not have to hold over for discussion until the next meeting? The Parliamentarian advised that this was more of a friendly amendment than a major substantive change. He also explained other options that could be undertaken. A question was raised as to whether the motion could be voted on at this meeting; the answer was yes. A motion was made to close discussion and postpone the vote until the April 1 faculty meeting; the motion to close discussion was seconded and debate ensued. The motion was put to a vote, first orally, then by show of hands. The motion carried by majority.
There was no new business.
There was no other business.
- Phil Boshoff announced the first annual Jon Ramsey Honors Forum Lecture will be delivered by Associate Professor Steve Frey of the Chemistry Department.
- The Shades of Gray Series will continue, beginning March 8 at 5:00 p.m. in Davis Auditorium,
the discussion topic: “Experiencing diversity in daily life at Skidmore College today,”
Wednesday, March 9 at 8:00 p.m. in Gannett Auditorium, the discussion topic: “In five years, ten years, what do we hope to see regarding diversity at Skidmore?”
- Academic Festival will be held Wednesday, May 4 from approximately 9:00 a.m. until approximately 9:00 p.m. A brochure will be going out right after break.
- An All-College picnic is tentatively planned to bridge the afternoon and evening sessions.
- Academic Festival project proposals can be submitted now.
- A reception hosted by Finance and Administration was held in the Faculty/Staff Club.
The meeting was adjourned at 5:30 p.m.
Colleen M. Kelly
Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculty