Council of University System Faculty

CUSF Executive Committee Meeting with Chancellor and Senate Chairs, November 10, 2006

CUSF Executive Committee and Senate Chairs Meeting
November 10, 2006
USM Office

Present: E.W. Chapin (UMES Senate and Faculty Assembly Chair, CUSF Vice Chair and Chair of this meeting); David Parker (SU; CUSF Chair); Martha Siegel (TU; CUSF Immediate Past Chair); John Collins (UMBI; CUSF Secretary); Patricia Alt (TU; CUSF Executive Committee); William Stuart (UMCP; CUSF Executive Committee); John Organ (BSU Senate Chair); Alcott Arthur (for CSU Senate); Robert Kauffman (FSU Senate Chair); Darryl Mullins (SU Senate Chair); Timothy Sullivan (TU Senate Chair); Alfred Guy (UB Senate Chair); Steven Jacobs (for UMB Senate); Philip Rous (UMBC Senate Chair); Hali Hartmann (UMBI Senate Vice Chair); H. Rodger Harvey (UMCES Senate Chair); James Gates (UMCP Senate Chair); Adelaide Lagnese (UMUC Senate Vice Chair).

Guests: William E. Kirwan, Chancellor, USM; Irwin L. Goldstein, Senior Vice Chancellor, Academic Affairs, USM.

Dr. Chapin opened the meeting at approximately 10:00am. Following a round of introductions by all present, Dr. Chapin was pleased to note that all USM campus Senates were represented at the meeting.

Dr. Chapin called on Dr. Organ to summarize the history and present state of shared governance at BSU. Dr. Organ gave a very positive report. He said that BSU now has a new President, Mickey Burnim, who is very good. Faculty and students were involved in the presidential search. Dr. Organ's comments were followed by a general discussion of procedures which have been used to select USM campus presidents.

Other issues discussed were (1) student advising: how it is assigned and how faculty get credit for it; (2) inequities in the distribution of merit pay; (3) UMCP’s billion dollar fund raising campaign; the use of +/- grades; admissions standards, including how to count SAT scores.

Each of the Senate Chairs and representatives gave a brief report on the state of shared governance and current issues of importance at their campuses. At UB, the biggest challenge now is the startup of four year programs. At UMB, the School of Public Health is breaking off from the School of Medicine next summer. This was faculty driven. The discussion of issues on various campuses continued until 11:50am, when Chancellor Kirwan and Vice Chancellor Goldstein joined the meeting.

The meeting broke so that attendees could pick up their box lunches and reconvened at approximately 12:10pm. Dr. Chapin invited the Chancellor to open the afternoon session with a few remarks. Dr. Kirwan said that, at the national level, the recent election results would be good for USM, since Maryland would now have two influential Senators (Mikulski and Cardin) and possibly also the House majority leader (Hoyer). He said that it is to our advantage to have Democrats in control of the U.S. Congress and Maryland General Assembly since they tend to be supportive of things like Pell Grant increases. He also noted that USM has been well-supported by Governor-Elect O'Malley. Governor-Elect O'Malley's proposal to cap tuition rates is of some concern, but he recently told the Chancellor that tuition cannot be capped unless there is adequate General Fund support for the USM.

The Chancellor told the group that there are currently one vacancy on the Board of Regents, three interim appointments that the new Governor could either submit to the Senate or put forward new names and there are with three more Regents whose terms come to an end in June. He also said that the final report of the Spellings Commission is not a bad document.

The Chancellor said that more than half of the USM faculty are on the TIAA-CREF optional retirement plan (ORP). USM is not competitive in this area. Currently, USM offers 7.25%, with no possibility for employees to contribute (although they can contribute to a supplemental 403(b) account). USM will support phasing in an increase in the State contribution to 9.25%, with a required 3% contribution by employees. TIAA-CREF is very pleased with this plan, and the Board of Regents is also behind it.

There was a discussion of benefits for full-time non-tenure-track faculty (FT-NTTs). Dr. Parker noted that FT-NTTs lose their health care insurance when they terminate employment. It was noted that increased salary funding would be needed to cover this inequity. Dr. Parker wants to work with USM to fix this problem.

The Chancellor made brief remarks on the impact of Base Relocations and Closings (BRAC) in increasing USM enrollment.

Dr. Goldstein talked briefly about the Carol Twigg initiative and left the meeting at approximately 1:00pm

The System-wide STEM initiative was briefly discussed. The Chancellor said that Maryland has not nearly enough math and science teachers.

The status of the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) agreement was briefly mentioned. The OCR has not yet acted on USM's application to be released from this agreement.

Other matters briefly discussed were procedures for discipline of tenure-track faculty, textbook policies, the status of Regents Faculty Awards, and concerns about program duplication.

In response to a question from Dr. Hartmann (UMBI), the Chancellor said that the Institute of Human Virology (IHV) is scheduled to move administratively from UMBI to UMB on July 1, 2007, with net zero financial impact on everybody. In the meantime, IHV reports directly to USM.