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Minutes of the Faculty Senate January 23, 2007 Meeting

January 23, 2007
3 p.m. 222 J. C. Penney

The meeting was called to order at 3:02 p.m. by Senate Chairman Timothy Farmer. Minutes from the previous Faculty Senate meeting (held December 5, 2006) were approved as submitted.

Report from the Chairperson - Dr. Farmer

(see attached)

Report from the Chancellor - Chancellor Thomas George

The Chancellor referred to House Bill No. 213 on Intellectual Diversity, which we have chosen to call "intellectual pluralism." The proposed legislation reflects a national concern that conservative voices are not being heard on college campuses. Chancellor George, along with Associate Provosts Walker de Felix and Cohen, prepared a response outlining areas where we are currently complying, areas where we could do better, and areas where we prefer not to comply.

The Chancellor noted that State Senator Matt Bartle opposed the appointment of Warren Erdman to the UM Board of Curators. Curator Erdman was described by Chancellor George as a "free-thinker," who had some interest in dispensing with the System altogether and having the chancellors report directly to the Board.

At the close of his brief report, the Chancellor was asked by Dr. Lawrence Barton about the status of Normandy Hospital, which was rumored to be torn down. Chancellor George confirmed that we are working with OEI and applying for tax credits. We can, he said, proceed with work on the baseball field; however, the hospital was bought with
$5 million borrowed from the System and will cost another $2 million to demolish.

Report from the Intercampus Faculty Council - Dr. Richard Wright

(see attached)

Concerning the search for a new UM President, Dr. Wright reported that all of the Curators will be involved, along with representatives from faculty, staff, students, and alumni. The goal is to move forward to identify a leader very quickly - perhaps as soon as March.

Report from the Committee on Bylaws and Rules - Dr. Matthew Keefer

Reminding senators of the previous meeting, when Bylaws and Rules was asked to look into the issue of the meaning of sign-offs on curricular proposals, Dr. Keefer reported that the Committee met for two hours and declined to propose any amendment to the bylaws at this time. Attention was called to a proposal on the C&I Committee's agenda for revamping the forms, which appears to address sign-off concerns.

Report from the Committee on Curriculum and Instruction - Dr. Mark Pope

Dr. Pope began by putting the amended curriculum form before the Senate. At the suggestion of Dr. Teresa Thiel, Dr. Pope agreed to change the form to reflect "significant" changes. Dr. Richard Wright suggested "with amendments." Dr. Lawrence Barton questioned if a seven-day deadline was sufficient, and Dr. E. Terrence Jones moved to change the form to allow 14 days. The Jones motion was seconded by Dr. Joseph Martinich, and passed without dissent. Dr. Thomas Eyssell inquired what the result would be if a chair doesn't respond within 14 days, and Dr. Pope said the C&I chair should make another attempt to call the chair. The motion, as amended by Dr. Jones, carried without dissent.

A proposed academic calendar for 2008-09 was approved.

Procedures to appeal capricious grading were introduced by Dr. Pope. Dr. Martinich objected to ambiguities and inconsistencies in wording, a position shared by Dr. Thiel, who was looking for a bit more specificity. Dr. Jeanne Morgan Zarucchi expressed concern that students might be given inducement to grieve grades by the amended language. Dr. Martinich moved (seconded by Dr. Margo Hurwicz) that the document be returned to the Committee with his own comments. The Martinich motion was approved by the Senate.

Concerning current curricular proposal forms, Dr. Martinich asked why it is necessary to reprint areas that have changed. Dr. Pope explained that it was beneficial to the Committee to have the whole proposal on one form.

Report from the Committee on Appointments, Tenure, and Promotion - Dr. William Kyle

(see attachment to agenda)

Report from the Budget and Planning Committee - Dr. E. Terrence Jones

(see attached)

Dr. Thomas McPhail suggested that there should be an annual report on investments in economic development matters, and Dr. Martinich felt that we should be reaping rewards in the form of contributions from our investments within a reasonable timeframe. The Chancellor remarked that we are spending a certain amount for CORTEX, while at the same time receiving a $2 million equity adjustment. Some things, he said, are intangible but still worthwhile. In closing, Dr. Martinich commented that we should be targeting alums who received scholarship money from us years ago for scholarship gifts for future students. There was a general consensus that he was right.

Completing the business at hand, the Faculty Senate meeting adjourned at 3:58 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Fred Willman
Faculty Senate Secretary

(minutes written by Ms. Joan M. Arban,
Executive Assistant to the Faculty Senate Chairman)