Council of University System Faculty

General Meeting: Wednesday, November 14, 2007

University of Maryland University College, Chasen Room


Joyce Shirazi (UMUC, Secretary), Deloris James (UMUC), Sharon Fratta-Hill (UMUC), Bill Chapin (UMES), Bill Stuart (UMCP, Vice Chair), Patti Cossard (UMCP), Joyce Currie Little (TU), Martha Siegel (TU, At-Large), Jay Zimmerman (TU), Dennis Coates (UMBC), Zane Berge (UMBC), Joyce Tenney (UMBC), John Collins (UMBI, Chair), Meg Johantgen (UMB), Alcott Arthur (CSU, At-Large), Dave Parker (SU, Past President), Paul Flexner (SU), Monika Gross (BSU), Rahim Ashkeboussi (FSU), Gerry Wojnar (FSU), Kim Rotruck (FSU), Rodger Harvey (UMCES)


Yulia Nemchinova (UMUC, Senior Instructional Support Specialist), Devin Ellis (UMCP, Chair, USM Student Council), Sarah Elfreth (TU, Representative, USM Student Council, SGA Senator)

John Collins called the meeting to order at 10:00am.

Joyce Shirazi introduced Mr. George Shoenberger, the Chief Financial Officer and Vice President for Administration of the University of Maryland University College, who welcomed CUSF to the campus. He talked about the history and future of UMUC. CUSF members asked him many questions. He responded to their questions regarding student and faculty counts at UMUC, how UMUC would handle a tuition freeze, and very specific questions about UMUC's online competition, in expanded detail.

New CUSF Website

Joyce Shirazi introduced Dr. Yulia Nemchinova, who gave a live presentation on two TV monitors showing the new CUSF website, which is located at Yulia Nemchinova discussed how she updated and redesigned the new CUSF website, under the guidance of Joyce Shirazi by improving the overall appeal, user friendliness of the existing content, and showing certain content that is currently not posted, such as an agenda before each meeting, etc. Yulia Nemchinova stated that she noticed that other USM advisory councils such as staff and students councils were represented at the USM site: ,whereas the CUSF website was located at , is hosted on a personal account of its current webmaster. The new CUSF website will be linked from that main USM site, pending USM approval. She also addressed her changes to the information architecture part of the project, as well as the continuity of the USM visual design themes across all USM online publications, i.e., interface elements and logos.

Others changes and additions that Yulia Nemchinova will make to the new CUSF website, based upon CUSF suggestions at this meeting are as follows:

  • CUSF members' names, email addresses and telephone numbers will be posted
  • K-16 will be changed to PreK-20
  • Executive minutes will be posted (pending CUSF Executive Committee approval)
  • New directions to each USM institution will be posted once they are emailed to Joyce Shirazi by each representative CUSF member.

Joyce Shirazi noted that the CUSF archives will remain at the previous website at, which will continue to be a valuable resource. It will be linked to the new CUSF website.


John Collins introduced student, Devin Ellis, Chair of the USM Student Council, who then introduced fellow student Sarah Elfreth, TU Representative to the USM Student Council and Student Government Association Senator. In John Collins' introduction he noted that Devin Ellis was attending the CUSF meeting because he was concerned that USM faculty members have not reached out for the $55 million of dedicated funding. Devin Ellis stated that the Governor needs to know that students and the entire university community are behind him and that we will get more support in the new budget in January. John Collins and Martha Siegel also noted how important it is. Patti Cossard mentioned that she sent out emails and alerts to faculty regarding this issue and followed up on Capwiz ( ). Her question was, “Should she send out a campus-wide FYI?” Patti Cossard noted that she does not want to compete with the faculty senate regarding the use of Capwiz. Devin Ellis responded that we should definitely lobby other faculty and administration, which is why he came to the CUSF meeting - to ask us to please talk to our colleagues and beg. If not, we could be looking at a 10% to 12% tuition increase and cuts to our budgets. Rodger Harvey said that at his university, UMCES, emails have been sent around and passed to everyone. Kim Rotruck noted that FSU is active with the faculty emails, as well. John Collins added that he will bring the issues up on Friday at the CUSF and Faculty Senate Chairs meeting.

The general thought was that perhaps the low activity via Capwiz from some institutions could be due to apathy and email blockage. Bill Chapin asked if the students' parents were responding. Devin Ellis responded that several thousand email messages have been sent by students and parents via the Capwiz system. Over a 24-hour period, several thousand telephone calls went out. The Senate put the dedicated funding back in, but not the House yet. John Collins mentioned that Irv Goldstein noted that PJ Hogan is doing a wonderful job up there in Annapolis and that it could be worse.

According to Dave Parker, the threat of not supporting this is confusing everyone. There are so many threats. Therefore, it is impossible to support the chaotic situation in Annapolis. Efforts to contact the legislators directly have not worked. Emails bounced back and telephone calls were not accepted. They do not seem to want to communicate. The deficit is because of Thornton. It is a predicted problem that the state did not address. More stick than carrot. The message is “just get behind the governor”, but none of us know the specific plan. Devin Ellis responded that by stating that we are not asking everyone to get on board with everything and that we actually should not do anything until the conference committee. Over the next 48 hours we will know what to do. Patti Cossard asked if we had a legislative committee and wanted to know how the Capwiz information was obtained. Kim Rotruck stated that she was happy about the responses from faculty and students at FSU, but wondered if USM knows exactly who sent the messages in response to Capwiz. Devin Ellis responded that PJ Hogan developed the Capwiz information and that the information that they are tracking is only the number of responses per institution, not which individuals respond.

Student Research Day

Monika Gross stated that there is a hold-up in planning Student Research Day. Sarah Elfreth noted that Annapolis 101, which is a system-wide lobbying day for students to discuss higher education issues with the legislators and possibly even the governor, is the hold-up because there is no firm date. Joyce Tenney noted that Student Research Day coincides with Annapolis 101, which is very beneficial. However, we need to let all invited know that it will occur in late February, even without the exact date. There are faculty members that may come with the students, and will possibly stay all day, including for the dinner in the evening.
Martha Siegel said that the big thing is space. John Collins asked for volunteers for the committee, but received none. Devin Ellis asked which space is better. Martha Seigel responded that corridor space is better because it is on the way to the buffet and that perhaps PJ Hogan could help. Martha Siegel indicated that she would help to find out which corridor would be best. The committee will meet and select a couple of dates for Student Research Day.

Textbooks, Plagiarism

It was noted that more legislation may be coming forward. A two-week holiday on sales tax for books would cost the State of MD $10 million. This is not likely to be popular with legislators.

Rahim Ashkeboussi mentioned that plagiarism exists and is a big problem. Answers are exactly the same. Dave Parker agreed that students are turning in plagiarized work. Most students just steal the stuff off the internet. Zane Berge stated that he is trying to make sure that his students all get published, and insists that his students use . Bill Stuart and Joyce Shirazi agreed that turning in a student for plagiarizing can become very cumbersome for the faculty member, due to the judicial process. Devin Ellis finished by stating that the current student body president at UMCP had a very bad experience with , though exonerated. Therefore, she hates, , and anything similar. If CUSF wants to take a formal stand against either, there would be no complaints from the student-side.

CUSF Committees

John Collins initiated a discussion about the CUSF committees, noting that PreK-20 is a subcommittee of the Academic Affairs committee. Bill Stuart stated that all Senate chairs should be members of CUSF and that many Senate chairs have never heard of CUSF. John Collins noted that all Senate chairs will be invited to the Board of Regents faculty awards ceremony. Kim Rotruck added that the most important thing is that faculty members get some recognition. Bill Stuart said that the Department Chairs Workshop will be in April, but the details are not available yet. Martha Siegel stated that CUSF must invite the speakers, etc., and that USM (Adelphi) must help as well. It used to be solely a CUSF activity. Currently, all of the provosts appear to be interested in it. Martha Siegel also asked if we want to consider the Chancellor's legacy (initiatives) as a new CUSF committee and added that we need to be involved in these issues, i.e. closing the achievement gap.

John Collins followed with a vote on the October CUSF minutes. The October 2007 minutes were approved at 12 noon. Afterwards, until 1 pm the discussions discontinued for the lunch break.

After lunch, John Collins continued with discussions about the CUSF tasks (New Chairs Workshop, Student Research Day, and Regents' Faculty Awards) and committees. Members of the Regents Faculty Awards task are Deloris James, Meg Johantgen, Alcott Arthur, and Rose Jagus. The CUSF committee volunteers/comments are as follows:

Membership and Rules
  • Chair - Bill Chapin
  • Other members - Joyce Shirazi and Alcott Arthur
  • New member names must be submitted to the CUSF secretary
  • Will need to find [true (?)] institution faculty numbers
  • Will initiate CUSF elections, which will be performed by separate group
  • Will post CUSF committee descriptions on the CUSF website
  • May become a steering committee for other CUSF committee
  • May become involved in increasing CUSF meeting attendance
Academic Affairs
  • Co-Chairs - Bill Stuart and Deloris James
  • Other members - Joyce Currie Little, Rod Harvey, Martha Siegel, Dennis Coates, Gerry Wojnar, Kim Rotruck, Bill Stuart, Sharon Fratta-Hill
  • Want more control of learning and student outcomes, versus student outcome assessment standardized tests. “Is our children learning?”
  • Closing the Achievement Gap – Are faculty involved at the beginning of this process? We need to send a strong message about being involved. Only one CUSF member was invited to the conference and it was UMBI.
  • PreK to 20 Subcommittee – Bill Stuart Chair - As we understand it more, we will discuss it.
  • Will look into grants at TU to see if we can have an impact on the Chancellor's initiatives.
Faculty Affairs
  • Chair - Paul Flexner
  • Other members - Rahim Ashkeboussi, Dennis Coates, Bobbi Adams, Dave Parker, Joyce Currie Little, Jay Zimmerman, Zane Berge
  • Will follow-up on benefits status by checking with Irv Goldstein first
  • Will follow-up on faculty salaries/retirement plans, i.e. sick leave in TIA-CREF disappears upon retirements, but in the old retirement you receive pay for most of it. It needs to be addressed.
  • Must review the possibility of “aspirational” peers for all USM institutions, and not merely at UMCP.
Legislative Affairs
  • Chair – Patti Cossard
  • Other Members – Lee Richardson
  • Advisors - Bill Chapin, David Parker, Martha Siegel, Joyce Tenney
  • Student Research Day - Joan Langdon and Monika Gross Co-Chairs
  • Agenda includes
    • Legislative docket and testimony
    • Contact/Liaise with PJ Hogan during special session
    • Find out protocol for campus information sharing of legislative issues with Campus
    • Develop a communication venue for legislative issues of concern to CUSF
    • Coordinate Advocacy initiatives

The meeting was adjourned at 1:45 pm.