Faculty       Chairs/Directors    
Dean of the Faculty/Vice President for Academic Affairs
 

FACULTY MEETING

March 1, 2013
Gannett Auditorium

MINUTES

President Philip A. Glotzbach called the meeting to order at 3:37 p.m.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

President Glotzbach asked if there were any corrections to, or comments regarding, the minutes of the Faculty Meeting held February 1, 2013.  Hearing none, he announced the minutes were approved.

PRESIDENT’S REPORT

On behalf of the Faculty Development Committee (FDC), Professor Alice Dean announced that the Edwin M. Moseley Lecturer for 2013-14 will be Greg Pfitzer, Professor of American Studies and Douglas Family Professor in American Culture, History, and Literary and Interdisciplinary Studies. Professor Dean stated that selecting the Moseley lecturer from our colleagues' nominations is one of FDC's most difficult but rewarding jobs; each year, FDC receives a list of candidates that reminds them of the great depth and diversity that Skidmore colleagues carry out.  She expressed her deep appreciation and admiration for this year's candidates whose accomplishments were truly amazing.  Professor Alice Dean also reminded everyone that the deadline for nominations for the Ralph A. Ciancio Award for Excellence in Teaching is today and that the deadline for the next round of Faculty Development Grants is March 22; further information and application forms can be found online at the Faculty Development Opportunities webpage.   A sustaining congratulatory round of applause was given to Professor Pfitzer on his award. President Glotzbach offered his congratulations to Professor Pfitzer.

President Glotzbach next reported on the Board of Trustees meetings that were held at the end of February. The Board discussed many topics, but the Thursday sessions primarily focused on strategic planning and thinking ahead to the next strategic plan, a conversation that has begun in various venues -- with the Trustees last year and with the Institutional Planning and Policy Committee (IPPC) this year. Members of the IPPC joined these conversations with the Board.  IPPC is interested in broadening the conversation about where Skidmore is today and where it needs to be in 10 years.  President Glotzbach believes the college is positioned to make some extraordinary moves over the next few years and encouraged everybody to participate in these discussions as the opportunity arises.

President Glotzbach also reported that the Board approved the major budget parameters for fiscal year 2014.  He invited Mike West, Vice President for Finance and Administration and Treasurer, to provide a brief update on the budget.  VP West reported that our current estimate for this fiscal year (fiscal year 2013) remains on target at $136.9 million for revenues and expenses with $946,000 in overenrollment funds.  VP West presented a PowerPoint presentation of the key budget assumptions for FY 2014 which showed anticipated revenues and expenses of $138.5 million, an expected net fiscal enrollment of 2,330, an increase in overenrollment funds approximating $2 million, an increase in the comprehensive fee of 3.9 percent, a proposed increase in financial aid from $37.5 million to $40 million, an anticipated general salary increase of 2.5 percent and 0.5 percent for market equity increases, and transfers from the capital budget of $8.2 million, an increase of 2 percent.   The board has authorized these key budget parameters, and the final budget will be presented to the full Board for approval in May.  Responding to a question concerning financial aid, VP West indicated that approximately 44 percent of the students will be on financial aid with nearly 70 percent requesting aid.

President Glotzbach concluded his report by providing an opportunity for questions concerning the recent soccer hazing incident.   He referenced his email to the community and commended Rochelle Calhoun, Dean of Student Affairs, and Gail Cummings-Danson, Director of Athletics, for their exemplary handling of the situation.  This hazing incident was a classic example of hazing; President Glotzbach stated that we take these incidents very seriously and are lucky there were no serious injuries.

Thereafter, Professor Dan Hurwitz made a statement concerning the proposed general salary adjustment.  In order for Skidmore to catch up with the increases in the cost of living as a result of not receiving an adjustment in 2009, he believes that the general salary adjustment needed to be approximately 3 percent. He proposed reallocating the 0.5 percent allowance for equity adjustment to accomplish this objective.  President Glotzbach thanked Professor Hurwitz for his analysis and said that this was an interesting point that will be considered.

DEAN OF THE FACULTY AND VICE PRESIDENT FOR ACADEMIC AFFAIRS’ REPORT

Beau Breslin, Dean of the Faculty and Vice President for Academic Affairs, congratulated Professor Pfitzer on his award.  Thereafter, DOF/VPAA Breslin introduced the newest faculty members who received tenure effective March 1, 2013: Maria Lander, Foreign Languages and Literatures; Robert ParkeHarrison, Art; and Mark Rye, Psychology.  He also introduced those faculty members who received tenure effective March 1, 2013 and were promoted to Associate Professor effective June 1, 2013:  Lei Bryant, Music; Michael Eckmann, Mathematics and Computer Science; Sylvia McDevitt, Biology; Becca Johnson, Psychology; Rachel Roe-Dale, Mathematics and Computer Science; Sonia Silva, Anthropology; Daniel Swift, English; and Flagg Taylor, Government.  Lastly, DOF/VPAA Breslin announced Yvette Cortes was promoted to Associate Librarian effective June 1, 2013.  A congratulatory round of applause was given to all the candidates.

OLD BUSINESS

Curriculum Committee

On behalf of the Curriculum Committee, Assistant Professor Sylvia McDevitt read the following Motion that was introduced at the last faculty meeting held February 1, 2013 (see attached):

MOTION:  The Curriculum Committee moves to eliminate the Business-Economics interdepartmental major.

There was no discussion, and the Motion was voted on electronically and passed by majority vote.

Faculty Executive Committee

On behalf of the Faculty Executive Committee, Professor Barbara Black read the following motion that was introduced at the last faculty meeting held February 1, 2013 (see attached):

MOTION:  On behalf of the Curriculum Committee, the Faculty Executive Committee moves that the following sentences (here in bold) be struck from the Faculty Handbook (Part Two, II,F,5).

5.       CURRICULUM COMMITTEE — Elected

Function: To act for the Faculty in reviewing curricular matters including those which implement educational policy concerning all-College requirements; to generate recommendations concerning immediate and long-range curricular matters; to administer the self-determined majors program; to make recommendations to the Faculty concerning other curricular matters brought before it by faculty, students, and the Administration.

Membership: Six faculty members, each from a different department, at least two of whom are tenured, elected to serve three-year terms; the Dean of the Faculty/Vice President for Academic Affairs or his/her designated representative; and two students selected by SGA. Non-voting members of the committee are the Registrar and the Associate Dean of the Faculty for Academic Policy andAdvising. A faculty member of the Committee shall serve on the self-determined majors subcommittee composed of other members appointed by the Curriculum Committee to represent a reasonable range of academic disciplines.

There was no discussion, and the Motion was voted on electronically and passed by majority vote.

Committee on Educational Policies and Planning

On behalf of the Committee on Educational Policies and Planning (CEPP), Associate Professor Michael Arnush introduced the following Motion (see attached):

MOTION: The CEPP proposes replacing the current “Dean’s Card” (see attached for current Dean's Card) with a new form (see attached for proposed new form), to be implemented as soon as technological and logistical issues can be surmounted.

Associate Professor Arnush made a Motion to waive the one-month layover period.  The Motion was seconded, and a vote on the motion was made electronically via iclickers.  The Motion to waive the layover period passed by majority vote.

Thereafter, Associate Professor Arnush began a discussion concerning the changes that were made to this new proposed form based upon the suggestions CEPP received from the faculty since the last faculty meeting held on February 1, 2013.  Responding to questioning concerning the implementation of the new form, Associate Professor Arnush indicated that there are some technical and financial logistics that need to be worked out but he is hopeful that the new form would be implemented as early as fall 2013.

Lengthy discussion was held concerning a request to include racial expression in the new form, the inclusion of gender expression, the implication of including racial expression with regard to the possible loss of anonymity, the potential issues of cross-tabulation of such data, and the type of data that the faculty member would receive.  Associate Professor Arnush stated that CEPP is not prepared to add a category for racial expression at this time citing the need for further research and discussion amongst the faculty. 

Discussion of the Motion continued with regard to the use of the phrase "excellent teacher" as it relates to the guidelines the Committee on Appointments, Promotions and Tenure (CAPT) uses in reviewing cases, after which a friendly amendment was made to replace the word "excellent" in question 21 with the word "effective".  The friendly amendment was rejected by CEPP.   

Following brief discussion on the complications of allowing faculty to have the option to stay with the old form, an amendment to the Motion was proposed and seconded to replace the language in question 27 from "Gender Expression with the choices of Man, Woman, Gender Non-Conforming, and Prefer Not to Answer" to "What is your Gender Identity" with the choices of Female, Male, Transgender, Other, and Prefer Not to Answer."  After brief discussion of the amendment surrounding bias, a Motion was made and seconded to close debate on the amendment to the motion.  The Motion to close debate was voted on electronically with iclickers and defeated by majority vote.  Whereupon, discussion on the amendment to the motion regarding gender expression continued with some faculty members stating that a fair amount of time has been spent discussing gender expression prior to the Motion being brought to the faculty, and discussion of this issue merely is delaying implementation of the much-needed new evaluation form.  There being no further discussion on the proposed amendment, the amendment to the Motion to replace the language in question 27 was voted on electronically with the use of iclickers and was defeated by majority vote.

Returning to the prior discussion concerning excellence, a Motion was made and seconded to amend questions 10 and 21 to replace the word "excellent" with "effective."   Thereafter, discussion was held concerning the use of the word "excellent" noting that excellence is an impossible standard and citing the wording "effective teaching" used in the evaluative criteria for continued service and advancement in rank in the Faculty Handbook.  Following discussion, the amendment to the Motion to replace the word "excellent" with "effective" in questions 10 and 21 was voted on electronically with the use of iclickers and passed by majority vote.

Thereupon, citing the commitment by the institution to increase student and faculty diversity, a further amendment to the Motion was made to add a new question 28 as follows: "How do you racially/ethnically self-identify (check all that apply) with the options being African American, White, Pacific Islander, Latino, and Hispanic".   Concerns were raised with regard to composing such amendments on the faculty floor, especially with complicated issues that can be raised with regard to race, and whether the students would feel they would lose their anonymity with the inclusion of this question.  Following discussion, the amendment to the Motion to add a new question 28 was voted on electronically via the use of iclickers and was defeated by majority vote.

Subsequently, on behalf of CEPP, Associate Professor Arnush expressed CEPP's commitment to examine the best language to ask students to self-identity in terms of race and ethnicity in a future iteration of the student rating form, to do so expeditiously and report back to the faculty.

Thereafter, a friendly amendment was made to strike question "27"; the friendly amendment was not accepted by CEPP.  Whereupon, an amendment to the Motion was made and seconded to strike question 27.    Following brief discussion, a motion was made to close debate; the motion to close debate was voted on electronically by the use of iclickers and failed by majority vote. Thereafter, a Motion was made to table the amendment to the Motion, which was not seconded.  There being no further discussion, the amendment to the Motion to strike question "27" was voted on electronically with the use of iclickers and passed by majority vote.

Thereupon, the original motion, as amended herein, was voted on electronically via the use of iclickers and passed by majority vote.

NEW BUSINESS

On behalf of the Faculty Executive Committee, Professor Barbara Black introduced the following Motion (see attached):

MOTION: On behalf of the Faculty Development Committee, the Faculty Executive Committee moves that the following new language be added to the Faculty Handbook, PartOne [Faculty Rights and Responsibilities], Article XII [Leaves of Absence], Section A[Sabbatical Leaves of Absence], Subsection 3 [Procedures], Subpart a [Application],Number iv:

OLD LANGUAGE

Applications must be received by the Dean of the Faculty/Vice President for Academic Affairs no later than January 15th of the academic year preceding the desired leave. The Dean of the Faculty/Vice President for Academic Affairs’ Office will transmit one copy to the Chair of the Faculty Development Committee.

NEW LANGUAGE

For full-year sabbatical leaves, applications must be received by the Dean of the Faculty/Vice President for Academic Affairs no later than October 15th of the academic year preceding the desired leave. For one-semester sabbatical leaves, applications must be received by January 15th of the academic year preceding the desired leave.  The Dean of the Faculty/Vice President for Academic Affairs’ Office will transmit one copy to the Chair of the Faculty Development Committee.

Also, in light of this change, two new pieces of language for Subpart b [Consideration], Number i and Number iii, are necessary (here in bold):

b.i.: On or before either October 15th or January 15th (whichever date pertains) of the year preceding the intended leave…

b.iii.: Applicants and their departmental Chairs will be notified by November 15th or March 1st (whichever date pertains) of the academic year preceding the leave.

There were no questions, and the motion will lie over until the next meeting.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

The meeting was adjourned at 5:37 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Debra L. Peterson
Executive Administrative Assistant
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