Council of University System Faculty

CUSF Meeting of March 15, 2005

Council of University System Faculty
Draft Minutes March 15, 2005

Present: Lee Richardson (Chair); Martha Siegel (Immediate Past Chair); Marian H. Harris (BSU); Joan S. Langdon (BSU); Alcott Arthur (CSU); John McMullin (FSU); Kim Rotruck (FSU); Mike Garner (SU); David Parker (SU, ExCom); Stephanie Gibson (UB); Patricia Alt (TU); Douglas Pryor (TU); Jay Zimmerman (TU); Steve Jacobs (UMB); David A. Hardcastle (UMB); Paul Thut (UMB); Joyce Tenney (UMBC); John H. Collins (UMBI); Rose Jagus (UMBI); Ray Morgan (UMCES); Court Stevenson (UMCES); Frank Alt (UMCP); Vincent Brannigan (UMCP, Vice Chair); Denny Gulick (UMCP); E. W. Chapin (UMES, Secretary); John Gustafson (UMUC); Adelaide Lagnese (UMUC); Gertrude Eaton (USM); Irv Goldstein (USM); Brit Kirwan (USM); Holly Stadler(USM).

The meeting was called to order at ten o'clock. President Jennie Hunter-Cevera and Acting VPAA  Marian Jackson brought greetings from the campus

The agenda was approved as distributed.  The minutes of the February meeting were approved as distributed.

CUSF Chair Lee Richardson reported that the bills submitted to the Legislature for the purpose of legislating classroom conduct and content all had virtually no chance of passing.  However, a bill providing funding to all Regional Centers but excluding the USM Regional Centers is of concern.

Vice Chair Vincent Brannigan reminded us that the Senate Chairs meeting has been moved to May 6 and that it will concern itself with matters of shared governance and academic freedom.

Executive Committee member Pat Alt led discussion reviewing the history of the Drug Free Workplace/Substance Abuse policy.  This is clearly an area of continued confusion and of division of opinion about what direction we should go.  We agreed to add Stephanie Gibson to the group continuing work in this area.

Past Chair Martha Siegel reported on the great success of the Students Research Days March 1, 2 and 3.  The new venue proved to be much more effective in assuring Legislative attention.  Careful planning and full cooperation between CUSF and USM will be necessary to insure smoother logistic operation for next year.

USM VCAA Irv Goldstein reported that

1.    There is no word yet on the health care cost changes for July;

2.    He will be leading a committee considering possible changes needed in tenure procedures and policies to provide more flexibility to reflect the changing professorate (aging faculty, more women, etc.);

3.    Progress is smooth for approval in principle of the addition of freshmen and sophomores at UB  starting in Fall 2006, but more infrastructure work and faculty hiring will be needed, particularly in such areas as science and mathematics;

4.    The UB/Towson MBA program seems to be on track for MHEC approval this afternoon;

5.    It appears that current experiments (in other states) with tuition surcharges for students taking large numbers of non-required courses are not cost-effective;

6.    As we approach the end of the current OCR cycle, work toward completion is being carried on in cooperation with the new AG for the USM;

7.    Increasing the use of information technology in instruction is clearly not a matter of "quotas per school", but rather one of determining costs for faculty development, sharing best practices, figuring out how to handle intellectual property issues, etc.

         USM Chancellor Brit Kirwan confirmed earlier information about the work of the legislature (and indicated that the actual increase in funds available for general distribution is about 4.8%) and continued the discussion of tenure flexibility.

Discussion of the CUSF appeals process (for actions of Presidents and other administrators on campuses seemingly not in conformance with Regents', USM or campus policy) led to a clearer understanding that CUSF is not interested in establishing a new grievance procedure or intervening is cases in which the currently established paths of appeal have not been completed, but rather proposing a way to continue dealing with the inevitable appeals that come to CUSF from individual faculty members, via a committee rather than (as happens now) leaving all this responsibility (and work) for the CUSF Chair.  Once this understanding became clear, (and once there was agreement that revision of some of the apparently overly legalistic wording might be in order), all parties seemed no longer to have difficulties with the proposed process.

The Chancellor also reported that, in addition to the annual change in Student Regent, Regent Joe Tydings will be going off the BOR to be replaced by Frank Kelly.  He also reported that the current round of Regents' Faculty Awards included one for our own, Rosemary Jagus (UMBI).

Professor Frank Alt reported on several current activities:

1.    There is talk at the MHEC FAC about tuition remissions for community college faculty seeking doctorates at USM institutions (and possibly for their families as well);

2.    There is also the possibility of high school students earning college credits in engineering and education disciplines at community colleges, an matter in which quality control is of considerable concern;

3.    CUSS has produced an excellent news letter/annual report, something we might emulate;

4.    There is a need for a further set of modifications in the pension plan comparison grid, but we must decide first how much we can include while keeping the grid useful but not unwieldy.  Information allowing comparison between USM and peer institutions would be most helpful in our considerations.

         Nominations for next year's CUSF Chair were closed on the names of Vincent Brannigan and Martha Siegel. 

The meeting was adjourned at about two o'clock.