Faculty Senate Minutes
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
February 15, 2008
In attendance: Anderson, Babbili, Bantell, Bickley, Cammarata, Causgrove, Changchit, Elwood, Hartlaub, Johnson, King, Mortimer, Oliver, Reuter, Rogers, Talley, Waheed, Winston
Meeting called to order at 2:07 by Senate Speaker Mark
Dr. Babbali would like the Senators to discuss the presence (or amount of time spent at each meeting) of the Provost and the Assistant to the Provost at Senate meetings. Do Senators have the opportunity to speak freely with Dr. Babbali present? If we feel that his being here is an issue, another option might be to have Babbali and Winston attend only a portion of the meetings. Another thing to keep in mind is that it is often helpful to have the Provost at hand to answer questions as they come up and to keep lines of communication open. We will discuss this issue at the March meeting.
The anonymous HERI faculty survey (from UCLA) is coming up. This survey was last conducted in 2005 with a 49% response. It mostly deals with workload and will take 20-30 minutes to complete. Questions re: Barnes & Noble have been added to the survey. If there is a great deal of dissatisfaction, Faculty Senate will take it up. There will be a letter sent out on Faculty Senate stationary from Hartlaub endorsing the survey. Please encourage your constituents to participate in the survey.
Until now, TAMUCC has picked up the $200,000 shortage in health insurance (first 90 days) for new hires. That money will now be used for new hires instead. Faculty Senate believes it will be a detriment to the hiring process. The system does, however, have plans available so that new hires may pay for their own insurance for that first 90 days.
We are now in the second year of the Preparatory High School program, and there are still no students on campus yet (with the exception of special events). They will be here for some classes beginning next year. There is a faculty committee, but the rumor is that they are not meeting regularly yet.
The Faculty Senate elections are coming up soon (nominations begin in March). Remember that the positions of Speaker, Deputy Speaker and Secretary will be open, so please consider running. Email Christine with your interest.
Academic Affairs (Talley):
Three new minors passed unanimously:
1-Entrepreneurship (COB) -- can be with or without a business major
2-Management (COB)-- no additional courses or resources
3-European Union Studies (COLA) -- recognizing increasing global importance of the EU and its relationship with the U.S.
Changes in the undergrad catalog copy include students being exempted from the TSI if they transferred from an accredited Texas private institution of higher education or an accredited out-of-state institution with acceptable college-level course work determined by the receiving institution. The catalog revisions involve changes in math and reading readiness standards for these students. As recommended by the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, the math readiness standard for theses students will be completion of College Algebra or higher with a grade of C. Previously, a B was required.
There is a feeling that the core does not seem to be as sacred as it used to be, but it is still hard to have a voice and be heard on the agenda of the committee. Some colleges seem to be better able to make changes than others to the core.
Undergrad Catalog Copy passed.
MA in Communications to be voted on next month:
36 hour degree
To begin in Fall 2009
Eleven universities in Texas currently offering the degree (closest is 153 miles from here)
A great deal of interest in this degree
Year 1: 20 students -- Year 5: 67 students
3 new faculty hires
The library is sufficient to support
$1.2 cost, $1.4 funding
A new degree in Mechanical Engineering will also be coming.
Two faculty members from each college will be needed for the UFDC. There are two volunteers so far. Senators, please go back and talk to your people about volunteering to get the committee going. In setting up the committee guidelines, the original document was used. Once the committee is up and running, they may only need to meet two times a year.
Awards are coming up soon for review by the ABE Committee.
Committee on Committees (Johnson):
The committee put forth a recommendation to create two new full-time non-tenure track faculty positions (lecturer and senior lecturer). They are similar to the instructor position, but with higher requirements. They are meant to encourage excellence, reward excellence and provide job security (one year's notice would be required vs. one week's notice before letting someone go).
It was proposed that Senators talk to their constituents for a vote next month.
Faculty Affairs (Oliver):
The Graduate Dean evaluation was approved with the change: everywhere it says "dean", it is changed to "graduate dean". It was also moved and approved that it be sent to the Council of the Deans.
The Senate voted to support Diana Marinez's emeritus status.
The Faculty Affairs Committee has identified problems with the tenure policy. They will have them prepared for the next meeting which means that P&T policy will have to be re-visited.
Provost's Comments (Babbili):
The SACS process has officially kicked off and will continue for the next two years. Please help with any SACS requests promptly. We do not want to lose our accreditation. Please make these SACS tasks a priority.
Hartlaub has begun to send the Senate summaries to the deans, as they can be our allies. It has been an oversight that we did not send them in the past.
The meeting was adjourned at 4:12.