University of South Alabama Faculty Senate 2004-2005

November 17, 2004
University Library, Rm. 110
3:00 p.m.


     The meeting began at 3:03 p.m. with Chair-Elect Doug Haywick presiding in Chair Steve Morris's absence. 

     Doug invited Mr. Robert Galbraith, Senior Associate Vice President for Research Administration, to address the faculty before the senate conducted its remaining business.  Mr. Galbraith provided a written report focusing on the university's Research Park.  (A copy of the submitted report is in the senate's records.)  The report made many points, but emphasizes the opportunities available to faculty and students via the park and that no regular operating funds have been diverted from the university for the park (the park is paying its own way with rental income).

     A quorum was declared.

Present:  Ames, Aronson, Beverly, Brown, Bru, Coleman, Costello, Dickens, Donovan, Dupree, Flynn Godfrey, Guion, Hain, Haywick, Jefferson, Kovaleski, Lauderdale, Millner, Molokhia, Nowlin, Pardue, Perez Pineda, Peters, Pillen, Powell, Pruitt, Rodning, Sachs, Sanders, Sauer, Scammell, Spake, Swofford, Whitehurst, and Wooster.    

Excused:  Giles, Harrison, King, Luterman, McCready, McIntosh, Moore, Morris, Ryan, Teplick

Unexcused:  Aldes, Burckhartt, Brick, Davis, Harris, Manci, Parker, Rattie, Robertson, Sylvester

     The Minutes of the October 20th meeting were approved without alteration.

     Doug read Steve's Chair report (a copy of which is in the senate's records).  One major point was the senate's starting an inquiry regarding the clarification of the new organizational structure now that Research has been separated from the Graduate School, and the future of the Dean of Graduate School position.  A second issue regarded questions for the administration as to the degree to which the recently-completed master plan is being followed.  Steve reported he has student retention data provided by Institutional Research (to use if that topic becomes more pressing).  Steve reports the Withdrawal policy will revert back to the way it was before this semester.  Dr. Covey has created a task force to examine the policy (and the task force has three senate members on it).  Finally, Steve informed the senate that the University has granted the use of its suite for the December 7 men's basketball game and the first 27 senators to leave a message on Steve's answering machine would get tickets.

Old Business

     John Sachs reported that two-thirds of the senators completing the last month's survey on the possible University Club would use the facility.  John and Deborah Spake are compiling a short survey of all university faculty that should be ready soon.

New Business

     Doug reported that he was going to be looking into the issue of space (and who allocates the precious commodity).  The driving force was a recent inspection of the Life Sciences building in which the Fire Marshall disapproved of lab tables and such in the building's halls.

     Doug also mentioned that the student retention issue seems to be very active in the College of Arts & Sciences with a list of "underachieving" class being distributed.  Federico Perez Pineda spoke with the college's Dean and was assured that the desire is not to punish teachers or decrease standards, but to improve retention via support for teachers' professional development and/or other processes.  The Dean is encouraging faculty involvement in the process.  (One tangent issue to address is the future of the Supplemental Instructor program at the university.)

     Senators raised questions as to the current status of the possible new College of Pharmacy (and the role of Auburn University in the current mix).

     A question was raised as to whether there was to be a Graduate Dean search.  Also, what are Dr. Stout's responsibilities? 

     Matt Ames put in a plug for "The Laramie Project" (which has three more performances on the weekend after this meeting).

Reports from standing committees

Academic Development & Mentoring:  John Kovaleski reports the mentoring reception went well.  The committee will meet in January to work on ways to improve the program.

Academic Policy and Faculty Handbook:  Marian Peters reports that the committee met today (11-17) and that she is on the university task force to examine the withdrawal policy.  She asks any comments be sent to her:

Environmental Quality:  Vaughn Millner reports progress on the recycling program involving the university's Honors Students.  She reports 34 students committed to getting the program up and running.  The committee is working with Dr. Stout on procedures as there are many potential roadblocks related to safety issues. 

     The committee is also going to be a regular source for a Vanguard column on environmental issues.

Evaluation:  Deborah Spake reports her committee has met twice since the last faculty senate meeting.  The survey for the University Club will go out soon (as reported above).  The annual Faculty Survey is in the process of being edited by the committee and the senate's Executive Council members.  The hope is to have the survey to faculty in the early portion of Spring semester.  Finally, the committee is in the process of updating posted survey results to include numeric responses (written comments were put on the webpage earlier).

Planning & Development:  John Sachs' report is under Old Business.

Salary & Fringe Benefits:  Ross Dickens informed the committee that he was going to pass on a "complaint" from a new faculty member regarding the ninth-month insurance delay for new employees.  The issue has many sides to it, but includes making recruitment more difficult.

Technology Utilization:  Jan Sauer reports her committee is working on editing the technology related questions on the faculty survey.  The committee is also examining software for faculty forum.  She is also trying to get some coordination between the three groups (PETAL, CIS, and Online Learning) offering faculty development.  Finally, she asks anyone having problems utilizing TURNITIN contact her:

Caucus Leaders reports

Allied Health:  John Jefferson reports increasing security problems at SHAC.  On a more positive note, the college's faculty has been working with architects regarding the on-campus building (to be shared with the College of Nursing).  

Arts & Sciences:  Federico Perez-Pineda reports 24 searches in the college (16 replacement and 8 added).  He also reports a new major:  a bachelor of social work.

CIS:  Harold Pardue reports a search for an instructor position.  Also, the college recently hosted an accreditation team for its I.T. program.  If accreditation is granted, the college would be one of the first in the nation accredited by all three possible agencies.

Continuing Education:  Elliot Lauderdale reported on the recent Civil Rights lecture series hosted by the college.

Education:  no report.

Engineering:  no report.

Library:  the Library is conducting a position search.

Medicine:  no report.

MCOB:  no report.

Nursing:  the college is also working with the architects on the new on-campus building.

With no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:29 pm.

Next meeting:  Wednesday, January 19th.