Meeting Minutes: April 8, 1998


The meeting was called to order by Chancellor Wallace at 3:45 p.m., in the Jesse Wrench Auditorium. Approximately 150-200 people were in attendance.

Report from Faculty Council

Chancellor Wallace introduced the Chair of the Faculty Council, Gilbert Youmans, for his introductory remarks. Youmans began by referring to a handout that summarized the results of a recent faculty survey. Youmans thanked those who took the time to fill out the survey.

Comments of Chancellor Wallace on the State of MU

Chancellor Wallace began his remarks by noting that he appreciates the opportunity to serve MU as Chancellor, especially since he has been at MU or the University of Missouri System for most of his professional life. He then commented that state appropriations through the nineties have kept pace with inflation for the university, and that the upcoming Mission Enhancement monies offer us several unique opportunities to enhance the university. Furthermore, faculty salaries are near equality with our peer institutions according to the latest figures available from the Institutional Research and Planning Office. Chancellor Wallace then reviewed his current plans for filling vacant positions, including that of the Provost and several deans. He further noted that we are doing well in minority recruitment of students and we hope to increase our minority faculty members. Moving on to the budget, he stated that there is no crisis in the current budget; however, we are able to handle certain budgetary shortfalls due to the availability of reserve funds. The shortfall does need to be addressed, and one of the charges to the Resource Advisory Committee will be to help examine what can be done so that the budget can be brought into balance before we use up our reserve funds. Chancellor Wallace then introduced the new faculty that were present at the meeting.

Proposal to Eliminate the W/F Grade

Gilbert Youmans opened this portion of the meeting with comments referring to the results of the survey of MU faculty and statistics on usage of this grade here at MU and at other institutions. A resolution by Faculty Council to eliminate the W/F grade will take effect next fall. No other action occurred at the meeting on this item.

Proposal to Count Only the Last Grade of Repeated Courses in the GPA

Youmans reported that the recent survey showed a majority of faculty favor this concept but with limitations. He reported that a majority of AAU institutions count only the last grade of repeated courses in the GPA, but with various limitations as indicated in the handout from the Faculty Council. Several speakers followed with some pro and con arguments regarding this proposal. It was noted that the Advisors Forum opposes this proposal.

Faculty Ombud Proposal

Youmans reported that the Faculty Council planned to conduct a mail ballot on this issue. The Chancellor made a few brief comments on the proposal. He stated that he has favored the idea from the outset and especially since the proposal has gone through several suggested revisions. He would like to see the proposal given a chance at MU, and suggests that we might consider a trial period. He also stated that he will move in accordance with a faculty vote on this issue. It was then moved and seconded that we conduct a mail ballot on the faculty ombud. It was then moved and seconded that an amendment be made to this previous motion to ask for a 57% positive vote in order for the faculty ombud to be accepted. The proposed amendment failed in a hand vote. The main motion then passed.

Closed Session and Adjournment

As there was no other business the General Faculty Meeting was adjourned at 5:00 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Bob Almony, Recorder