Meeting Minutes: June 9, 2016


Members present: Sheila Baker, David Bergin, Cooper Drury, John Gahl, Richard Guyette, Jung Ha-Brookshire, Berkley Hudson, Art Jago, Dennis Kelley, Teng Lim, Leslie Lyons (for John Middleton), Francisco Gomez (for Peter Nabelek), Jeffrey Rouder, Anne Stanton, Marty Steffens, Mary Stegmaier, Ben Trachtenberg, Bill Wiebold, Robert Winholtz, Flore Zephir, Rebecca Graves (Librarians), Don Sievert (MURA), Galen Suppes (AAUP) and Rebekah Hart (Council Secretary). Members absent: Anna Ball, Tina Bloom, Trent Guess, Naresh Khatri, Tony Lupo, Camila Manrique, John Middleton, Nicole Monnier, Peter Nabelek, Angela Speck, Mahesh Thakkar, and Vitor Trindade.

Approval of Minutes

Chair Trachtenberg called the meeting to order at 3:32 p.m. The minutes of the 4-21-2016 Faculty Council meeting were approved as presented.

Report of Officers

Chair gave update on dean vacancies and searches. Currently there are six vacancies. The search schedule for permanent A&S dean is not yet known. The search for permanent Law dean should start up soon. Provost hopes to have new dean in by fall 2017. Executive committee has been working with the Provost Office to suggest interims and search committee members.

As reported in the news, $700K was stolen from MU. Chair urged faculty to review the audit report sent out today.

The Ad Hoc Joint Committee on Protests, Public Spaces, Free Speech & the Press has put out its final report. The committee may have more work before the process is finished as this is not the final word (the committee’s report is only a recommendation). Most likely will be improved and changed before enacted. There will be public meetings in the fall on this to give people a chance to discuss. The chair expressed appreciation for the tremendous work the committee did.

On a slightly different free speech tack, a piece in op-ed section of the newspaper commented about a movie that raised concern (a professor was told not to show it in class). Title IX is about discrimination not about whether movies are controversial. We need to get out there and educate people, lest misunderstandings hinder free inquiry and debate. Title IX is not a wet blanket thrown over honest discussions.

Interim Chancellor Hank Foley looking into developing a more robust program in honors college. Expect to hear more about this. The library is hit by the budget cuts. Acquisitions budget is hit hard. Find your liaison librarian and speak to them about the resources you need. You can’t have a great university without a great library. The graduate student union filed a lawsuit in Boone County regarding MU not recognizing union vote. The outcome is unknown at this time. There is a lot we can do to help grad student education, union or no union. Council will continue to pay attention to this in the coming year. 

Will send out survey about Faculty Council standing committees. Will be asked to rank committees you prefer.

New curators were appointed yesterday by the Governor. These appointments are temporary unless they are confirmed by the state Senate in January.

Discussion Items

Guests: Frank Schmidt, Chair, Honorary Degrees Committee (in closed session)

Report of Race Relations Committee – Hudson. Berkley Hudson gave an oral report with the promise of a formal report on August 4th. The committee will only go for a few more months meeting as often as they have. The idea is to replicate groups of 8-12 people throughout the university within the colleges and schools. The committee solicits your ideas on how to extend this throughout the university as this requires your support and engagement. Requesting suggestions of people who are good listeners and willing to get involved. It requires a great amount of attention to focus on race. Chuck Henson stepping down from interim vice chancellor post. He had been supporting our work. Craig Roberts has been doing a pod cast speaking to white faculty and they plan on pushing these out. Will be meeting with departments and Deans Council (again). Still working on videos. Will have recommendations based upon what they discovered. Will have a reading list.

Proposed New Shared Governance Award – Monnier. Cooper Drury reported in Monnier’s absence. Proposal has been sent out. Two awards would be given out by FC (one to a person and one to a group) annually to those who have benefited the university under shared governance. There will be a modest monetary award funded by the Provost's office. Vote will be August 4th. If it passes, first award will be given out Spring 2017. It was suggested that multiple awards given out first year or two to cover backlog of deserving.

Proposed Changes to Rules of Order – Monnier. This discussion postponed to our 8-4-16 Council meeting.

NTT Standing Committee – Monnier. Chair reported that Monnier, the current Faculty Council liaison for this committee, will eventually report on its work. Monnier will be a co-chair of the committee during AY 2016-2017.

Faculty Authority Resolution – Suppes. Faculty Affairs committee created a report & resolution on authority of faculty. The resolution was put forward to FC executive committee, which rejected it. Resolution was accepted by AAUP. Request that this resolution go forward to general faculty for a vote in the fall. The committee will hold an informational forum on this.

Galen Suppes gave background information on faculty advisory authority. If there were more guidelines on this, then events this past fall might have been different. Suppes moves that FC approve that a forum be held on this in September and that a couple weeks after an electronic vote (of the general MU faculty) be held. 

Resolution: If a committee has not been specifically delegated authority to act on behalf of the Faculty, the Faculty Council will have authority to act on behalf of the Faculty as allowed by the CRR. All "declarations" and "recommendations” (i.e. actions) by the Faculty Council shall be posted on a web site at least ten business days prior to finalizing the authority during which time the Faculty will have the opportunity to Challenge per CRR 300.010.C.3.d(6). An email sent to the faculty after posting on the web site will initiate the ten-day period.

Discussion ensued focusing on why the executive committee rejected the proposed resolution, what authority FC was given at its inception, and how FC could better engage and communicate with the faculty. Chair stated that the resolution was rejected as it is superfluous. FC is the elected body. Disagrees that FC is broken. Thinks that FC could be better at job but overall not broken.

Standing Committee Reports

Academic Affairs (Jago). Accomplished most of what we set out to do. Adopted an academic calendar after taking a detour. Asked to consider a couple of new syllabi statements and decided that common decisions and statements belong in the Mbook or rules and regulations (not in syllabi). Recommended and FC adopted that we increase TOEFL scores required of foreign students. Now at the level of peer universities. Met with the registrar regarding lack of standardization of certificates awarded from approximately 65 certificate programs on campus. Worked with registrar and have standardized signatures on certificates. Many of these programs have not been evaluated. Committee now working with Leona Rubin to create schedule of evaluation. Met with library concerning open access issues regarding journals. Looking at sharing intellectual product in a way that doesn’t create more wealth for conglomerates that own journals.

Open projects are: looking at TBI among students so affected, addressing attendance and absenteeism policies and looking into extended transcripts – e.g., Stanford has approved transcripts that document activities students engaged in beyond formal course work, such as lab work w/faculty, internships.

Diversity Enhancement (Speck). Delivered by Sheila Baker. The committee had a fourfold charge: 1) Diversity curriculum requirement for freshmen, 2) Diversity training beyond freshmen, 3) Increasing Diversity on campus, 4) Daycare on campus. However, the charge was strongly impacted by events of the fall semester. The committee worked on a diversity curriculum requirement proposal which is now ready to be rolled out to the faculty at large and hopefully will be voted on in Fall 2016. In collaboration with the office of Undergraduate Studies (Jim Spain) and Institutional Research (Mardy Eimers), the committee investigated a standardized survey given to students to determine whether we improve students’ cultural competency over the course of their college careers. We determined that the survey results are not fruitful, and the survey has been discontinued. The committee, in light of events on campus, reached out to the many groups of diverse students, staff and faculty on campus to ensure we understand and act on their concerns. 

Fiscal Affairs (Gahl). The committee had two charges. First, to engage with Rhonda Gibler, Vice Chancellor of Finance to establish communication at the unit level of local budgets. Gibler agreed and communicated with CFOs and Deans that they reply to her and must also reply to their units where the money is going. Now there is a dotted line where every CFO reports to Gibler. Second charge was to look at fiscal impact of campus organizational structure of system. Proposed a resolution to have system looked at. Chair Trachtenberg added that he did meet with administration about this and was told he would hear back. Request was neither granted nor denied.

For next year, plan to look at how budgets are set per school and unit. Also will look at how different units are dealing with budget cuts. Will follow up on whether Chancellor will put BAAC back to work.

Student Affairs (Ball). Marty Steffens reported on behalf of Ball. Committee looked into grad school issues, especially health insurance issues, as well as safety of study abroad programs. Wore Tim Evans out and replaced him with Anna Ball. In the current budget climate, the committee recognizes the need to protect student interests. The committee has plans to meet with the MSA and the GPC (the student governments for undergraduates and grad/professional students).

Any Other Business

Cooper Drury reported on IFC (Intercampus Faculty Council). Generated a report on teaching waivers which was instrumental in Legislature's decision not to pass cap on said waivers. IFC has pushed for more engagement by curators such as assignments of curators to campuses. The curators were open to this, but have not yet agreed to it. Legislative update: we owe our lobbyists a thumbs up as the UM campuses are receiving a 4% increase in budget versus the 0% proposed. Also, legislation allowing other schools in state to have Ph.D. and professional programs has been tabled, and the bills allowing concealed carry on campus have been defeated.


Faculty Council went into closed session at 5:07 p.m. for a report from the Honorary Degrees Committee and other committee work. Council adjourned at 5:14 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Rebecca Graves, Recorder