FACULTY MEETING PAGE
MARCH 31, 2006
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 March 3, 2006 Faculty Meeting minutes; hearing no objections,
the minutes were approved.
President Glotzbach opened his report by thanking everyone for their patience and
throughout the power outage the prior Wednesday. He thanked Bob and Peg Boyers for their work on
organizing the conference on “War, Evil, the End of History and America Now,” with keynote speaker
French Author, Intellectual Bernard-Henri Levy, held on campus Friday through Sunday, March 24-26.
President Glotzbach also reminded everyone of this year’s Steloff Lecture given by Irish Novelist John
Banville to be held in the evening. He asked the faculty to encourage our students to take advantage of
President Glotzbach introduced Sarah Goodwin, Associate Dean of the Faculty, to give
a report on the
penultimate phase of the Middle States process. Dean Goodwin thanked everyone who took part in the
complex visit that took place the previous week. The draft reviewers’ report was read to Skidmore’s
Middle States Committee. The team praised the self-study and was impressed with Skidmore’s plans and
aspirations, but expressed concerns regarding adequate resources and/or adequate faculty support to
meet goals. Recommendations are included in the final report. The report will be mailed to Skidmore by
April 10; Skidmore will have one week to respond to it. The final report will be posted to the Middle States
website once it is received. President Glotzbach thanked everyone who worked on the project.
President Glotzbach advised that the House of Representatives passed this year’s version of the
Reauthorization of the Higher Education Act. Information can be found in the Chronicle. He noted that
the bill is not as damaging as had been feared, but it does not improve access to higher education
President Glotzbach spoke about the recent concerns that have been raised regarding
compensation. He reaffirmed the commitment of the administration and the Trustees, as well as his own
personal commitment, to making continued progress in dealing with issues of compensation for both
faculty and staff. In last fall’s memo, dated October 31, 2005, Vice Presidents Chuck Joseph and Mike
West confirmed plans to raise average faculty salaries to the median of Skidmore’s peer group within
three to five years. This goal was stated in the Comprehensive Compensation Plan (CCP) which was
adopted in fall 2003. This year’s AAUP compensation study has not yet been released. Our analysis of
that data will be provided within one week of receipt.
President Glotzbach noted that for Academic Year 2004-05, Skidmore employees were
provided a four
percent General Salary Adjustment (GSA) compared with a national Consumer Price Index (CPI) of
2.8 percent. There are no comparable CPI data yet for the current year, but it should be in the range of
three to four percent. President Glotzbach acknowledged that these figures do not accurately reflect the
complete compensation picture. Other changes in compensation, such as cost-sharing for health
insurance and a one percent reduction in contributions to TIAA CREF, had negative effects on current
salaries. However, in moving to implement the CCP, approximately $700,000 of additional funding was
included in budget years 2004-05 and 2005-06, to enhance both salary and benefits for faculty. These
funds were used to acknowledge promotions and provide market equity adjustments to faculty members
whose salaries were below the median for their rank. In 2004-2005 the combination of the four percent
faculty and staff GSA and the additional funding for market and equity increases resulted in an overall
average increase for continuing faculty of 6.2 percent. This year, 2005-06, in order to maintain
competitiveness in hiring, the Assistant Professor rank was targeted for market adjustments. Overall, in
the Professor rank, the average increase was 3.8 percent; for the Associate Professor rank, the average
increase was 4.5 percent; for the Assistant Professor rank, the average increase was 12.9 percent. The
President believes that substantial progress has been made at the Assistant Professor rank level;
however, insufficient progress has been made at the Professor and Associate Professor ranks. Since last
spring, plans have been under study to accelerate the rate of progress under the CCP in fiscal year
2006-07. The creation of the Optimization Committee was a direct result of that effort.
Today, the Institutional Policy and Planning Committee (IPPC) received the Optimization Committee’s
final report. President Glotzbach stated that nothing would please him more than to provide additional
details at this point, but the 2006-07 fiscal year budget will not be approved by the Board of Trustees until
its May meeting. The only parameter that has been set by the Board at this point is a tuition increase for
next year. The IPPC will be an active participant in determining the remaining budget parameters; the
Committee on Educational Policies and Planning (CEPP) will also be involved in the process. As things
progress, the IPPC will most likely hold one or more open meetings to provide information regarding
compensation. The Trustees have been fully supportive of efforts to improve faculty and staff salaries.
The Strategic Plan, which the Trustees approved, emphasizes achieving competitive wages for faculty
and staff, and they are committed to the Plan.
President Glotzbach stated that budgets represent choices. This year’s budget has
challenging, particularly with regard to significant increases in utility costs. The tuition increase is, by
necessity, larger than originally planned, and new initiative funds are limited. Other measures are being
implemented to attempt to free up funds that could possibly be put toward salaries.
President Glotzbach then introduced Mary Lou Bates, Dean of Admissions and Financial
Aid, to give a
report on this year’s admissions data. Last week, the bulk of the 6,650 application decisions went out. At
the moment, Skidmore’s acceptance rate is the lowest in its history. The overall acceptance rate for
regular decision as well as early decision and London is at 39 percent; last year Skidmore was at 44
percent, the year before was at 48 percent. Skidmore’s spring acceptance rate, the regular decision and
the HEOP/AOP students rate, is at 35 percent; last year was at 42 percent, the year before was at 48
There are approximately 2,100 accepted regular decision students, which compares with
2,300 last year
and 2,600 the year before. The on-campus target number is 610 plus 36 in London. Approximately 56
HEOP/AOP students have been accepted to enroll 40 students; traditionally, about 80 percent of those
students are students of color. The increase in selectivity means that this year’s accepted students are
more qualified. The SAT score for the admitted group is 1320 overall (includes early decision as well as
London). The spring admitted group SAT score is 1340, compared with 1330 last year. Early decision
candidates have been invited to come to campus on April 7. General Accepted Candidates Days are
being held on April 10, April 17, and April 21. Due to the dining hall renovations, the luncheon will be a
sit-down lunch in the intramural gym. Faculty participation is needed and welcome; it is desired to have a
faculty representative at each table. Times of the luncheons are 12:45-1:30. Discovery Weekend will be
held on April 20-22. The Science Task Force has organized a phone project this year with current math,
science, computer science majors phoning accepted students with those areas of interest. A number of
faculty members have also volunteered to phone accepted students of color; more volunteers are
welcome. Dean Bates thanked everyone for all that they do.
President Glotzbach mentioned that in 1996 the accepted student rate was 68 percent.
Glotzbach also addressed the matter of the creep of number of admitted students and Skidmore’s yield
rate (student who actually enroll at Skidmore). The yield rate is still low, but as the acceptance rate
decreases, the yield rate should increase. Help is needed from everyone to participate in the spring
accepted student activities and beyond to enroll the strongest class in Skidmore’s history.
VICE PRESIDENT FOR ACADEMIC AFFAIR’S REPORT
Vice President Charles M. Joseph began his report by acknowledging several faculty
Assistant Professor Greg Recco announced that the Department of Philosophy and Religion is hosting
"Reading Plato's Symposium” on April 8 and April 9. All events will be held at the Surrey. An email with
further details will be distributed. Associate Professor Jennifer Delton, announced the Kuroda
Symposium on Early American Culture and Politics to be held on April 7 and April 8 and sponsored by the
Departments of History, American Studies, and Government. Professor Tadahisa Kuroda will be in
attendance. There are two parts: Keynote address will be delivered by David W. Blight, Professor of
History at Yale University, author of “Race and Reunion : The Civil War in American Memory.” On
Saturday Professor Blight will remain on campus to listen to and comment on presentations by students
from the departments of Government, American Studies, and History. Ian Berry, Susan Rabinowitz
Malloy '45 Curator at the Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, announced the Luce
Symposium: “The College Museum: A Collision of Disciplines, A Laboratory of Perception” sponsored by
the Henry R. Luce Foundation, the Michele A. Dunkerley Dialogue Series to be held April 7 and April 8.
Brochures were provided at this meeting.
Vice President Joseph commented that the inaugural season for the First-Year Experience
well. Recognition and acknowledgement has come from beyond the campus. Michael Arnush, Associate
Professor and Director, First-Year Experience, reported that they have received a $200,000 Mellon
Foundation grant. The funds will be used for faculty development and some for student projects. Mellon
dollars will be used for a four-day workshop for development of Scribner Seminars (May 22-May 25) for
those faculty who will be teaching in the fall of 2007; workshop session for mentoring for those teaching in
fall 2006 (dates and times to be announced); co-curricular activities such as sponsoring speakers,
performers, and other individuals who might be brought from off campus to help support the program; and
collaborative research projects targeted at both the incoming accepted students as well as those students
who are finishing up the First-Year Experience program and moving into their sophomore year.
Associate Professor and Chair of the Music Department, Tom Denny, announced an upcoming
“Hated Music-Music Against Hatred”, sponsored by the Skidmore Jazz Ensemble to be held at 4:30 p.m.
in Filene Recital Hall. Jazz vocalist Nnenna Freelon will participate.
Vice President Joseph gave an update from the Optimization Committee. The final report
and will be distributed on Monday. The report was submitted to and endorsed by IPPC. He thanked
everyone who worked on the report. President Glotzbach stated that the report will be presented to the
Board of Trustees in proper form.
DEAN OF THE FACULTY
Dean of the Faculty Muriel E. Poston reported that she was very pleased that the Summer
Research program having received an increase in applications this year. The student stipend was raised
from $1,550 to $2,500 in an effort to attract more applications. The national average for student stipends
for collaborative research is $3,500. Unfortunately, due to the overwhelming number of applications
received this year, only approximately 50 percent of the awards will be made. The awards will be
announced at the next faculty meeting.
Dean Poston also acknowledged the marvelous work of the Exercise Science and Chemistry
with Una Bray, Associate Professor of Mathematics, in producing a Goldwater Scholar for Skidmore.
Jonathan Brestoff ’08 is a double major in Exercise Science and Chemistry and is Skidmore’s first
Goldwater Scholar. A Goldwater scholarship is awarded to sophomores and juniors in science and
mathematics; approximately 300 are offered annually. She further reminded everyone of the importance
of student mentoring by faculty. Students also presented posters at the Northeastern Geological Society
of America meeting. Assistant Professor Kyle Nichols reported that Steve Wells, President of the
Northeastern Geological Society acknowledged the work of the Skidmore students at that presentation.
Dean Poston acknowledged Professor Steve Stern as having recently received a Guggenheim
Professor Stern is Skidmore’s second faculty member to receive this prestigious award. Associate
Professor Kate Greenspan has been invited to participate in one of the NEH 2006 summer seminars:
“The Seven Deadly Sins As Cultural Construction In The Middle Ages” to be held at Cambridge
University. This is not only a great honor for Associate Professor Greenspan, but for Skidmore as well.
Dean Poston extended an invitation to participate in a forum on April 18 from 4:00-5:30
p.m. in Davis
Auditorium hosted by the Committee on Appointments, Promotions and Tenure (CAPT). The purpose of
the forum is to discuss the development of interdisciplinary lines at Skidmore. A broad faculty discussion
is necessary to address the concept of tenure lines in interdisciplinary programs.
DEAN OF SPECIAL PROGRAMS
Dean of Special Programs Paula Newberg announced that Phylise Banner Kline, Instructional
Technologist, will offer a seminar in June on the preparation of online courses on June 5 and June 9.
There is a stipend available; those who are interested should contact University Without Walls.
Skidmore’s fourth McCormack Visiting Artist-Scholar resident will arrive on campus on April 2. Awardwinning jazz vocalist Nnenna Freelon will present a very interesting program collaborated by eight departments on campus. Upon Ms. Freelon’s conclusion of her residency, she will have taught between
500-600 students on campus, in addition to students at the Division Street Elementary School and at the
Greenberg Center. There are a number of activities that will be open to the public including a free
performance on Friday.
Associate Professor Tim Burns, on behalf of the Faculty Executive Committee (FEC),
floor for discussion of three motions (see Attachment A) introduced at the March 3, 2006 faculty
meeting regarding “Faculty Handbook” amendments.
MOTION 1 – Ad Hoc Committees; plus friendly amendment: There was no discussion; the
motion was put to a vote and passed with all in favor.
MOTION 2 – Athletic Council: There was no discussion; the motion was put to a vote and passed
MOTION 3 – Submission of Grades: There was no discussion; the motion was put to a vote and
passed with all in favor.
Associate Professor Matt Hockenos, on behalf of the Committee On Educational Policies
Planning (CEPP), opened the floor for discussion of a motion (see Attachment B) introduced at
the March 3, 2006 faculty meeting regarding the consideration of Advance Placement (AP)
credits. Minor changes to the motion were explained. There was no discussion; the motion was
put to a vote and passed by majority.
Associate Professor Tim Burns, on behalf of the Faculty Executive Committee (FEC),
a Resolution regarding compensation. Associate Professor Burns read the resolution (see
Attachment C). The motion, coming from the Committee, needed no second. Discussion
MOTION: A subsequent motion was made to vote by paper ballot. The motion was
seconded. A vote by voice was inconclusive; the motion was put to vote by show of
hands and passed by majority.
FEC was unable to distribute and collect ballots as it was the committee offering
A group of volunteers distributed, collected, and members of CAPT tallied the votes. President
Glotzbach read the tellers’ report. Number of votes cast: 118 total: 102 ayes, 15 nays, 1 abstain.
The Resolution carried.
Professor Lary Opitz, on behalf of the Committee on Appointments, Promotions and Tenure
(CAPT), made a motion that the faculty as a body should formally endorse the Optimization
Report issued by the Optimization Committee, subcommittee of IPPC. The motion was
seconded. The floor was open for discussion, there was no discussion; the motion was put to a
vote and passed by majority.
Associate Professor Tim Burns, on behalf of the Faculty Executive Committee (FEC),
gave an update on
the Committee’s activities. First, work has been done to fine-tune Skidmore’s governance system
including addressing the needs and membership of standing subcommittees. Second, through revision of
its operating code and Faculty Handbook amendments, attempts have been made to codify procedures
for the flow of information between the faculty and administration with respect to Committee of
Committees meetings, Board of Trustee Observer notes, faculty-only meetings, and task force meetings.
Third, a task force has been created, together with the Dean of the Faculty, to review the current practice
of course releases with a goal of greater fairness or equity and greater transparency in the distribution of
course releases (co-chaired by Dan Hurwitz and Muriel Poston). Fourth, there have been steady and
productive meetings with the VPAA, the Dean of the Faculty, and the incoming Interim VPAA, with future
plans to also meet with the Dean of Special Programs. Fifth, FEC has received the charge and timetable
of two task forces: the Taskforce on Intercultural and Global Understanding and the proposed
Information Resource Council’s Taskforce on Digital Assets Management. Finally, FEC has been asked
by CAPT to discuss possible courses of action for the scheduled review of the Office of the VPAA given
the recent termination of any need for the scheduled performance review of that office.
Senior Teaching Associate Susan van Hook together with Senior Teaching Associate Kim
a presentation on behalf of the Campus Environmental Committee (CED) on sustainability. Information
and data is available from the CEC web site (https://www.skidmore.edu/cec/): CEC is seeking input from
the community both by email and attendance at open fora to be held Monday, April 3 at 10:00 a.m. in
Gannett or Thursday, April 6 at 3:00 p.m. in Davis.
• Professor Catherine Golden announced that Academic Festival will be held May 3,
format has changed slightly to a panel format to be more engaging. Applications will be accepted
up until Wednesday, April 5. All faculty and students are encouraged to participate. Faculty
should be encouraged to seek out student cooperation and collaboration to develop
presentations. Brochures were distributed, and more information and the application can be
found on the Honors Forum website: www.skidmore.edu/academics/hfc/af.
• Vice President for Finance and Administration and Treasurer Mike West invited everyone to the
faculty meeting reception hosted by the Office of Finance and Administration to be held in the
Dana Atrium immediately following the meeting.
The meeting was adjourned at 5:15 p.m.
Colleen M. Kelly
Office of the Dean of the Faculty