UNH Faculty Senate

Summary Minutes from 25 October, 2004





I.  Roll – The following senators were absent:  Baldwin, Burger, Chang, Crepeau, Deem, Mathur, Powell, Robertson, and VanDeveer.  Excused were Ament, Broussard, Emison, Laue and McNamara.  President Hart, Provost Mallory, Alan Ray, and Terri Winters were guests.

II.  Communications from the president - The president said that the university is beginning a search for a new dean for the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences.  That search will include a review of the job description.  The celebration by baseball fans after the important win on Wednesday evening went well except for one incident; and the university is planning carefully for future events, to help celebrations be both fun and safe.  Parents’ weekend also went well at UNH this weekend, and fifty-one legislators attended the game at the invitation of the Parents’ Association.  The administration is preparing a new video to promote the KEEP New Hampshire appropriation for building repair and renovation, and the president said that faculty help and support on budgetary outreach would be appreciated.  Faculty should also encourage students to vote.  Information about the registration process will be emailed to senators.

III.  Communications from the provost’s office – The provost said that today he sent an email to the faculty, thanking them for their efforts to encourage responsible celebratory behavior and asking faculty to continue those efforts in the future.  The provost said that there had been an interim vice provost at UNH for many years, and the provost felt it was important to make the position permanent rather than interim.  At the senate meeting, the provost introduced Alan Ray, who is the new vice provost for academic affairs and whose responsibilities include overseeing the undergraduate academic program, providing leadership to seven university-wide programs and centers, and working with the Academic Standards and Advising Committee.  He is an affiliate associate professor of philosophy and justice studies at UNH and in the spring of 2005 will teach a senior seminar on Native American religions and the law.  He is a member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma.  He holds a Ph.D. in the study of religion from Harvard University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and a J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.  He served for eight years as Harvard Law School’s associate dean for academic affairs and has taught undergraduate and graduate students at Boston College, Harvard Divinity School, and Harvard Law School.

Alan Ray said that he welcomes faculty to visit, telephone or email him and that he is especially interested in input about new programs such as the Discovery Program.  He added that the Discovery Program Advisory Committee will ask the faculty’s advice and approval of the implementation steps planned.  Alan Ray will host regular meetings of representatives from the Honors Program, UROP, IROP, the Discovery Program, the Writing Program, the International Program and others.  He is very interested in interdisciplinary programs and in ensuring a financial framework that will work with these programs.  He will also attend the meetings of the Faculty Senate’s Academic Affairs Committee.

IV.  Communications from the chair – The senate chair said that the Discovery Program Advisory Committee members are Joanne Curran-Celentano, who is the director and chair, John Ernest, Michele Holt-Shannon, Louise Buckley, Cliff Brown, Michael Carter, Tom Davis, John Niesse, John Seavey, and Peggy Vagts, as well as Alan Ray, Kathie Forbes, Christine Sohl, and Judy Spiller.  The University Curriculum and Academic Policies Committee was established as an elected committee with representation from each school and college.  However, this year WSBE did not elect a representative; and after a number of requests for an elected representative, the Agenda Committee asked the faculty senators from WSBE to suggest nominees.  Roger Grinde, the outgoing WSBE representative to UCAPC, was nominated and agreed to continue as the UCAPC member from WSBE.  Sam Shore will be the senate’s representative to the Athletic Advisory Committee.

A calendar for the senate meetings has been prepared, assigning the senate committee charges to specific meetings.  The senate office will communicate with the committee chairs to confirm the calendar schedule.  The November 8 Faculty Senate agenda is expected to include a report on Discovery Program implementation, a report on changes to the guidelines for English 401, and a discussion of such diversity issues as pro-active searches and mentoring for minority faculty.  The November 22 senate agenda may include a report on changes in land acquisition and disposition, a preliminary report on the charges of the Financial Affairs Committee, and recommendations on article III of the senate constitution.

Concern has been expressed that this year, when fall break was the Friday before Homecoming Weekend, too many students contracted alcohol-related illness or injuries.  However, in most years the academic calendar will have spring break fall on Columbus Day, which is observed on a Monday.  The senate chair will communicate with the provost and Mark Rubinstein about this issue.

V.  Minutes – The minutes of the last Faculty Senate meeting were unanimously approved.

VI.  UNH Portal Project – Terri Winters said that the Portal Project is part of the Blackboard system.  “Single Sign On” is the ability to enter a UNH IT ID and password once to access both Blackboard and Webcat. Also CISUNIX email (webmail.unh.edu) will use the same password. Therefore faculty will only have to remember one password and the UNH IT ID, in order to access all three applications.  Over six hundred faculty use the Blackboard system, and faculty use Webcat to help in advising students.  If faculty are unsure of their UNH IT ID, it is the account name or username on the following applications:  AD, BANNER, Blackboard, CISUNIX, NetReg, VPN, Webmail (webmail.unh.edu), Web Contributor-UNHInfo, and Outlook Exchange.  If needed, faculty may find their UNH IT ID by calling the CIS Help Desk or by pointing their browser to blackboard.unh.edu, clicking the services tab, clicking “Find my UNH IT ID”, and following the instructions.  Faculty can follow the same steps to find their UNH IT ID password, except that under the services tab, they would click “Verify my UNH IT ID password”.  If a faculty member does not have a CISUNIX account, Help Desk staff will explain how to get one.  CIS will soon create CISUNIX passwords for all faculty and staff who have a Blackboard and/or Webcat account but do not have a CISUNIX account.  Information on the new CISUNIX account and password will be mailed to the home address in late November or early December.  Please share information about the above with your constituents.

VII.  Statement of Commitment – Liza Finkel, who is the chair of the senate’s Student Affairs Committee, said that the committee is reviewing changes to the Statement of Commitment and will bring recommendations to the Faculty Senate for approval.  The statement is sent to new students for signature at the time they accept enrollment in the university, so that there is a legal commitment to what is in the statement.

VIII.  Administrative search procedures – Ed Hinson, who is the chair of the Ad-hoc Committee on Administrative Search Procedures, said that on September 27 the Faculty Senate discussed the search procedures and passed a motion, with the understanding that Ed would discuss with the provost the senators’ suggestions for wording changes, in the document referred to in the motion, and would bring the results back to the senate.  Regarding emergency search procedures, the provost has agreed that the Agenda Committee could consult with faculty, through the Faculty Senate, electronically during breaks and summer vacation when the senate is not in session.  In some cases during such breaks, heavily affected subsets of the faculty might be contacted electronically via college executive committees.

Regarding the question of whether changing a senior administrative position from interim to permanent requires a search, the answer is yes, although there can be exceptions to this as long as affirmative action guidelines are not violated.  Regarding what would happen if the faculty refused to designate a search as exceptional, the provost indicated that the answer to this question should not be made explicit in the document because, although shared governance means that selection of academic deans and other senior academic administrators should be done with the advice of and consultation with faculty, the document cannot be written with language that permits a veto.  The selection of academic deans and other chief academic officers should be the responsibility of the president with the advice of and in consultation with the appropriate faculty.  This language comes from the 1966 Joint Statement on Government of Colleges and Universities, which was jointly formulated by the American Association of University Professors, the American Council on Education, and the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges.

A senator said that, when he was on the search committee for a senior administrator, the person given the job was the last person on the committee’s list.  The senator asked if faculty really want the president to choose from a list.  Another professor responded with reasons why the president’s choosing from a list could be appropriate.  Ed Hinson said that the intent of the work of the Ad-hoc Committee on Administrative Search Procedures and the intent of the senate motion passed on 9/27/04 are to force further consultation with faculty as a matter of course, in situations where those consultations might otherwise be impaired by circumstances.  The ad-hoc committee will come to the Faculty Senate later with final recommendations on the document’s wording.

IX.  Adjournment – The meeting was adjourned.                                                            

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