UNH Faculty Senate
Summary Minutes from 8 October, 2012
UNIVERSITY OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
2012-13 FACULTY SENATE
OCTOBER 8, 2012 - MINUTES SUMMARY
I. Roll – The following senators were absent: Connelly, Pescosolido, Shore, Simos, Veal, and Woods. Guests were Mark Huddleston, John Aber, Mark Rubinstein, Petr Brym, Faye Richardson and Sonic Woytonik.
II. Remarks by and questions to the president – President Huddleston said that this Thursday at the state of the university address he will discuss some current initiatives. He said that the advocacy campaign, to ask legislators to restore university funding which was recently slashed, seems to be going fairly well. Also, the leadership phase of the capital campaign is in full swing; and Deborah Dutton has been hired as the new vice president for advancement. The effort to change the relationship of UNH to the chancellor’s office has borne fruit over the last year; and UNH now has more autonomy, so that the university can be more nimble and flexible in its response to opportunity. The Board of Trustees has adopted a resolution to initiate this modification; and the USNH college and university presidents now report directly to the board, not to the chancellor. The Huron Consulting Group worked with the Board of Trustees to rewrite relevant policies and procedures. For example, the university can now buy property up to a larger dollar amount and can modify a UNH academic program without going through the university system office. The changes will save UNH both time and money. The president said that the amount of money the university is assessed by the system will likely be reduced, but the exact dollar figure is not yet known. Redundancy restrictions among the institutions in the university system have been lifted.
III. Remarks by and questions to Mark Rubinstein on enrollment – Mark Rubinstein said that UNH has a record level of enrollment this year. The total new student admissions at the Durham campus, not including the 94 new Navitas enrollees, is 3710 this fall, compared with 3644 last fall and 3656 in the fall of 2010. There is a decline of about 14% in new in-state students, offset by a rise of about 20% in new non-resident students, resulting in about 56% non-resident students this year in the first year class. Declines in new in-state students have also occurred at Keene and Plymouth. This may have been affected by the publicity about the severe budget cut to the university system instituted by the state legislature and by the resulting increase in tuition for in-state students. There were declines in new student enrollment in COLSA and CEPS, offset by increases in WSBE, CHHS, and liberal arts. CEPS and COLSA had previously grown to record levels; and some programs are still increasing but others are not, in those colleges. Total enrollment on the Durham campus is 14,761 this fall, compared with 14,596 last fall and 14,469 in the fall of 2010. The new UNH students are 56% women this year. Approximately eight percent of this year’s incoming class is from under-represented groups, but UNH seniors who responded to the College Senior Survey report less likelihood of meaningful interaction with someone different from themselves during their last year at UNH than in the year prior to enrolling at UNH. Retention continues to be strong, but we note some concerns that might be associated with cost of attendance. High student debt remains an issue for the university, students and their families; and the difference is great between the median which is $24,777 and the mean which is $32,000. Mark Rubinstein said that he would send data on student loans to the faculty senators. More than two-thirds of the outgoing seniors say that, even considering their student loans, if they had it to do over again, they would choose to come to UNH. The four-year graduation rate is 69% for UNH, which is better than in the past. UNH is also doing well regarding its six-year graduation rate of 76%.
The Office of Admissions, when reviewing applications, takes a holistic approach to understanding students that is broader than just class rank and SAT scores. In recent years, fewer high schools provide class rankings, and so the university is now identifying or recalculating a high school grade point average on a 4.0 scale. The SAT score correlates with family income and reflects significant differences in test performance for female and male students. Female students enrolling at UNH as first year students this year have mean combined SAT scores that are about 40 points lower than those of male students; but entering female students’ mean class rank (where still provided) is about five percentile points higher than for males; and female students tend to earn higher GPAs at UNH than male students do. The university also considers the students’ transcripts, grade point averages, essays and recommendations. The mean of the combined mathematics and verbal SAT score for enrolling students was 1092 this year and 1103 last year. The figures in today’s report are for the Durham campus and do not include UNH-Manchester, because the UNH-M data was received later. Mark Rubinstein said that he would try to provide SAT information for UNH-M. The Behavioral Intervention Team worked with seventeen students in the first month of this academic year, which is an increase over the previous year. The director of the Counseling Center is happy to provide workshops on campus, about how faculty and staff can respond to students who may possibly need this type of help. Regarding enrollment, UNH is close to capacity during the fall semester and is trying to utilize better the summer sessions, January term and spring term.
IV. Remarks by and questions to the chair – Faculty are encouraged to participate in the second open forum on e-UNH on Friday, October 19 from noon to 4:00 pm in the Squamscott Room of Holloway Commons. Lunch will be provided at noon, and the program starts at 12:30. Also, more faculty senators are needed to serve as facilitators for the discussion groups at that forum. Regarding revisions to the general schools policy, the senate chair said that the provost was out of town this past week. The Agenda Committee suggested some revisions to him, and the schools issue is expected to be on the agenda at the next senate meeting. Last spring, the Faculty Senate passed motions to set up two new ad-hoc committees, which are the Teaching Evaluation Form Implementation Committee and the Promotion and Tenure Standards Oversight Committee. The senate asked the deans to hold elections for the faculty representatives to these committees from each college; but the deans have not completed those elections, although the process may be starting now. The Agenda Committee will follow through on this matter. There is a new Campus Master Plan available on the web at www.unh.edu/cmp; and there will be a public forum on Thursday, October 18, from 12:30 to 2:00 pm in the Huddleston Hall Ballroom, to review the plan and field questions. In addition, the State-of-the Art Lecture Series presents Professor Michael Goldberg on October 17, with a reception at 4:30 p.m. in the Squamscott Room of Holloway Commons and then a talk and discussion on “The Sterile Debate about the Rationality of the Financial Market. This lecture series is co-sponsored by the Faculty Senate.
V. Minutes – The minutes of the last senate meeting were approved unanimously.
VI. Discussion with Petr Brym on IT security – Petr Brym presented information from a letter to the UNH faculty and staff, on resources for the protection of university information. He said that the need to protect privacy has never been greater. Reports of information breaches at other institutions show that, with expenses averaging $194 per stolen record, a single incident can easily result in multiple millions of dollars of damage. Laptops, PDAs and other portable devices are easily lost or stolen and can carry protected information. For these reasons, as well as for federal and state legal requirements, faculty and staff must take an active role in protecting personally identifiable information such as social security numbers, credit card numbers, passwords, medical information and academic records. For how to accomplish this, please see the UNH IT Policy and Security Information Portal found in the UNH Faculty and Staff Blackboard organization under the IT Policy and Security link.
The USNH Data Classification Policy defines restricted information as information for which protection is legally defined and/or is required by federal and/or state law. Such data must only be stored in approved systems, and unauthorized disclosure or access has serious consequences. Identity Finder is a computer program that helps look for social security numbers, credit card numbers and passwords and can also be used to detect other protected information and remove it from vulnerable locations, such as your computer. Please check out the Identity Finder instructions in the portal or contact IT Security for advice and assistance. Scan as soon as possible and address the findings. Even after running Identity Finder, protected information is likely to end up back on some devices in temporary files. Symantec PGP Encryption makes it difficult for unauthorized persons to view such information if a device is lost or stolen. View the PGP encryption information in the portal, or contact UNH IT Security to discuss whether encryption is appropriate for your situation and to request in-person assistance to encrypt.
Employee training is required by many privacy laws and industry standards. A general information-security-training PowerPoint, as well as several topic-specific presentations are posted in the Portal. Live training is provided through the Supervising @ UNH, Getting Started @ UNH, October Cyber Security programs, and custom training scheduled with IT Security staff. Short and informative videos are available on line. Please see instructions in the portal for accessing these resources. UNH is subject to daily attacks by those who try to steal personally identifiable information and financial resources, and it is important to be informed about threats and solutions to address those threats. Key time-sensitive topics are posted through UNH Today, Signals and the IT Security Website at http://it.unh.edu/itsecurity. Checking the “Important Security Updates” section at least weekly at the website is advised.
Storing university information in systems that lack adequate protection, contracts and security reviews puts the computer user and the institution at risk. UNH uses the Vendor Contracts Security Questionnaire posted in the Portal to screen prospective providers. USNH Purchasing provides advice regarding contract language. Professionally operated data centers at UNH provide key protection mechanisms that are not possible in offices and storage closets. Use these resources, and obtain administrative approval prior to storing restricted information in any system. IT Security is available to help screen service providers and review existing contracts.
The communication value of on-line social media services is well known, but the use of social media without taking reasonable precautions is fraught with dangers. Be sure to obtain appropriate administrative approval before establishing a university-related account, and follow the UNH social media guidelines on the UNH IT Security web site under “Good Practices”. Only post information that is appropriate for viewing by the public, activate all available security settings and re-verify them often, and manage daily any posts that others may post to the account to ensure that all content is appropriate. Remove the site if you can no longer review it often. Follow university policies, such as the strong password requirement, to prevent unauthorized tampering with the account. Report to UNH IT Security any concerns about abuse or compromise of social media services.
Phishing is a very serious problem, often caused by organized crime, and is becoming so sophisticated that in some cases the only way to distinguish a legitimate e-mail message from a malicious one is by what it is trying to get you to do. Review the phishing information on the IT Security Website, and check for new examples frequently. Never click on links in unsolicited e-mails or open attachments in such messages, and do not respond to unexpected messages that ask you for your password, social security number, credit card number, or other protected information. Be aware of “spear phishing”. In these attacks, the phishers learn something about you in advance and send you an e-mail that appears legitimate because the subject is something that is familiar to you. Also be aware that seemingly legitimate websites found while searching the internet can instantly infect your computer with a large number of highly dangerous and hidden malware products, such as password stealing software. It is best not to click directly on links found in searches. Type the high level URL of the legitimate location that has the information that you need, and then drill down to the information on that site.
Sending passwords, social security numbers, credit card numbers and other protected information through electronic mail and un-encrypted connections is against university policy and privacy laws. It is similar to shouting out loud such information in a crowd of people. E-mail transmits information in clear text form, can be easily misdirected to unauthorized recipients, and remains in e-mail systems for a very long time. If you have a need to transmit such information, contact IT Security for a consultation about appropriate methods. Attackers thrive on vulnerabilities. Using computing devices with outdated security updates and malware protection, accessing the internet while logged into your computer with administrative privileges, using the same password for all your resources, and storing restricted information in unapproved systems make you an easy target. Check out the good practices documents at http://it.unh.edu/itsecurity, in order not to be a soft target; and see the response plan on the same site. Set the computer so that your daily default login account does not have local administrative privileges. Lock your computer screen before walking away from it. Use on-board virus protection. If you detect a virus or other malware, assume your computer was exposed to a cocktail of viruses; the computer should be wiped and rebuilt.
Many training events are available on the Durham campus. Please see the latest updates at http://it.unh.edu/itsecurity and register at https://ittraining.unh.edu/apps/ssr. A session will also be scheduled at UNH-Manchester, and more can be scheduled there as needed. The UNH Computer Repair Services is also adjusting its services to help you be safer. For example, new computers will be set up with the UNH active directory account not having administrative rights on the local machine. A second account with administrative rights will be provided on the computer, for use when administrative privileges are needed. Reduce your risk by disposing of data which is no longer needed, and define in writing how long data should be retained. While encryption can slow down a computer, this is not usually noticeable; and the security benefits far outweigh any performance impact. Encryption software can be set up in about ten minutes; and the owner of the computer can work, shut down and reboot the machine while it encrypts. The length of time it takes the hard drive to encrypt itself in the background depends on the size and age of the drive. The owner of the computer can un-encrypt and remove the encryption software, as necessary. Check to see that your academic technology liaison updates and checks your desktop on a regular basis. According to university policy, any electronic devices that you do not wish to keep must be destructively wiped before the device leaves your possession, and the process is described on the website “SEED” section on safe electronic equipment disposal. UNH employs a company in Seabrook which, under a strict contract, properly wipes and responsibly processes the physical devices.
VII. Adjournment – The meeting was adjourned.
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