UNH Faculty Senate

Summary Minutes from 22 November, 2004

_______________________________________________________________________________________________

UNIVERSITY OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
2004/05 FACULTY SENATE

NOVEMBER 22, 2004 - MINUTES SUMMARY

 

I.  Roll – The following senators were absent:  Annicchiarico, Baldwin, Burger, Crepeau, Miller, Pescosolido, Powell, and Sheriff.  Excused were Broussard, Laue, Emison and Gumprecht.  President Hart, Alan Ray, Ted Howard, Tom Lee, Ted Kirkpatrick, and Jenna Coulp-Yu were guests.

II.  Communications from the president – President Hart expressed her regret at the death of UNH student Richard Hegerich, who at 1:00 a.m. on Sunday was struck by a car driven by Kevin Whittacker, who is also a UNH student and who is accused of driving while intoxicated and leaving the scene of the accident.  The UNH counseling emergency response team has been meeting with students who would like help dealing with this tragedy. 

President Hart said that she encourages faculty to participate in the open meetings of the RCM Review Planning Committee and to provide both positive and negative feedback, questions and concerns.  She said that the UNH football team has had a very good season and will now participate in post-season play.  On Friday, the University System of New Hampshire presented to the governor the USNH operating budget proposal, which includes a budget increase.  The president will organize a series of social events prior to talking with the legislators about the budget process and the rest of the KEEP New Hampshire appropriation.  The university also hopes to obtain bonds to build several new student residences.  The Moody rating is A-one, which should allow the university to get a lower interest rate.

III.  Communications from the chair – The senate chair said that the senate welcomes Jenna Coulp-Yu as the student observer to the Faculty Senate.  The chair said that Robin Collins will be one member of the ROTC Board of Governors and that another faculty member is needed to serve as the senate’s representative on that board.  The senate chair also asked for a faculty member who would be willing to serve on the 2005 Social Justice Awards Selection Committee.

IV.  Minutes – The senate unanimously approved the minutes of the last Faculty Senate meeting.

V.  Report from the Finance and Administration Committee – Chris Shea, the chair of the senate’s Finance and Administration Committee, gave a preliminary report on the committee’s charges, which are to participate in the RCM fifth-year review planning process, to represent the senate on the Central Budget Committee, and to attend the meetings of the Finance and Administration Committee of the Board of Trustees.  The senate’s Finance and Administration Committee invited David Proulx to give the members an overview of the RCM system.  The committee also requested that faculty be given broad representation on the RCM Review Planning Committee, and currently thirty percent of the members are faculty:  Chris Shea, Don Quigley and P. T. Vasudevan.  In order to hear the concerns of all university constituents about responsibility center management, a team from the VPAA and VPFA offices will hold open meetings in each school and college.  The senate’s Finance and Administration Committee asked that the open RCM meetings be as accessible and as unstructured as possible, and a representative of that committee will attend each of the open meetings.  Chris Shea asked the senators to encourage their departmental colleagues to participate in the RCM open meetings, in order to identify the issues that should be dealt with in the RCM review.  The meeting schedule has been sent to each senator; and open meetings will be held in COLSA on December 6, CEPS on the 10th, SHHS on the 13th, WSBE on the 14th, UNH-Manchester on the 15th, and LA on [a date in February which will be announced later].  Faculty could review RCM issues on http://www.unh.edu/rcm/ and could discuss RCM issues with the department chair and colleagues at a departmental meeting.  In addition to participating in the open meetings, faculty may send input to Professors Shea, Quigley or Vasudevan. 

VI.  Land use, acquisition and disposition – Tom Lee, who is the chair of the Advisory Committee on Land and Property Use, said that formerly UNH did not have a mechanism in place to collect information about the value of university lands for teaching, research, outreach and other uses.  The administration agreed to establish a set of committees which would be responsible for gathering the facts about the land value and uses.  The Advisory Committee on Land and Property Use deals with multiple-use lands which are not run by a single program as the agricultural areas are.  Nearby lands include 241 acres in College Woods and 155 multi-use acres such as woods at Woodman Farm.  Many other farms belonging to UNH also contain woods.  The multi-use lands include approximately 1403 acres in the nearer properties plus 2000 acres in remote lands, for a total of about 3500 acres, most of which are used for teaching, research, outreach, recreation, and sustainable forestry.  Timber sales from certain lands provide the university with a fair amount of revenue, and the Committee on Woodlands and Natural Areas oversees the woodlands uses.  That committee, which used to report only to the COLSA dean, now also reports to the Advisory Committee on Land and Property Use.  The latter committee reports to the Committee on Real Property Acquisition and Disposal, which is chaired by Candace Corvey and which reports to the president.  The Space Allocation, Renovation and Repair Committee (SARRC) is also consulted.

Faculty who wish to use university lands should request a use permit [called a CRA Registration Form which can be accessed from http://www.unh.edu/woodlands/index.html. Forms should be submitted to the Office of Woodlands and Natural Areas, 215 James Hall.]

The Advisory Committee on Land and Property Use reviewed the undeveloped lands, collected data on the lands and their uses, soils, geology and water resources, and wrote a stewardship plan with the objective of more efficient and appropriate land use and management.  A land evaluation matrix was created and presented to the Committee on Real Property Acquisition and Disposal which makes recommendations to the president about land management, acquisition and disposal.  Some of the lands are well marked as UNH properties and some are not.  Any problems with neighbors tend to be the same as for any land owner.  Since the undeveloped lands do not have human structures, liability is minimal, as long as fires and wells are dealt with appropriately.  The university has estimates of value of the timber in those woods.  A professor expressed concern about the combination of hunters and student runners using Foss Farm.  Tom Lee said that, although some lands are posted against hunting, many other lands are open to hunting and that the professor could request that a change be made if needed.  In answer to a question about areas slated for development, Tom Lee said that the land evaluation matrix was made with the current uses in mind.  Also, some properties come to UNH with restrictions as to their use and some do not.

A professor said that the work on the land evaluation matrix sounds very valuable but that the university observatory and its road were built in the middle of the hydrology well field.  The senate chair said that she represents the senate on the oversight committee and that one concern is that the university does not have a good system for the users of the land to give input when other uses are considered.  Faculty with specific concerns are invited to email them to Tom Lee and Mimi Becker.  The university needs to ensure that teaching and research are not compromised by new uses.  Even when lands are sold, some use may be retained via land conservation trusts and easements.

VII.  Study Abroad Policy changes –  Cathy Frierson of the senate’s Academic Affairs Committee presented information on the two study abroad motions which had been sent to the senators via email.  The two motions are proposed amendment one, on study abroad academic eligibility, and proposed amendment two, on study away eligibility and student conduct, which are amendments to the UNH Study Away Programs:  Principles, Policies, Procedures.  In answer to a question, Ted Howard who is the director of the Center for International Education said that about three or four Thompson School students per year participate in the Study Abroad Program.  Currently, those students have to petition in order to participate, and so the policy needs clarification in that area.  This year about six hundred students are participating in the Study Abroad Program.  The Center for International Education forwards student records to UNH-approved programs, after the student signs a release and the records are obtained from the Office of Student and Academic Affairs.  A professor said that a student who has conduct problems and wants to apply to the UNH Study Abroad Program is punished by not being allowed to participate but that another student with similar conduct and who stays at UNH would not be punished in that way.  Cathy Frierson said that a task force would be established to develop procedures for implementing policy on study away eligibility and student conduct.

On behalf of the senate’s Academic Affairs Committee which unanimously approved this amendment, Cathy Frierson made a motion that the senate approve proposed amendment one, on study abroad academic eligibility, as follows: 

Students enrolled in UNH baccalaureate degree programs may participate in approved study abroad programs provided they meet the following eligibility criteria:

  1. Must have earned at least 32 credit hours, at least 12 of which must have been earned at the University of New Hampshire at the baccalaureate level;
  2. Must have a minimum 2.5 cumulative grade point average at the time of application to and at the time of departure of the study abroad program.  Study Abroad Programs provided by UNH or approved institutions may have higher minimum GPA requirements;
  3. Must have a declared major.

Transfer students, including transfer students from Thompson School of Applied Science (TSAS), are not eligible to study abroad during the first semester of their baccalaureate program at UNH.

Students enrolled in the degree programs of the Thompson School of Applied Science may participate in approved study abroad programs appropriate for two-year degree candidates.  TSAS students must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  1. Must have earned 32 credits, at least 12 of which must have been earned at the University of New Hampshire at the associate degree level;
  2. Must have a minimum 2.5 cumulative grade point average at the time of application to and at the time of departure of the study abroad program.  Study Abroad Programs provided by UNH or other approved institutions may have higher minimum GPA requirements.

A professor said that the Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures requires a 2.0 grade point average but also requires study abroad and that study abroad requires a 2.5 grade point average.  Do students with 2.0 grade point averages do the required study abroad in programs not run by UNH?  Cathy Frierson said that some students avoid the UNH study abroad restrictions by withdrawing from the university, studying abroad, and then requesting that the credits be accepted.  What legal liability would there be if students are advised to follow this route?  A professor suggested that the name of proposed amendment one should be changed to “Study Away Academic Eligibility”.  The senate chair said that the senate will return to that issue after getting clarification.

 Another faculty member said that item number two means that students who start out doing poorly academically and then improve greatly could not go abroad.  Cathy Frierson said that the student could petition for a variance in that case.  She added that fewer than twenty percent of students fall below a 2.5 GPA, and so her committee thought this GPA was a good bench mark.  A professor said that, although the request for variance option is mentioned explicitly only in proposed amendment two, any academic policy has a variance option.  Proposed amendments one and two to the UNH Study Away Programs:  Principles, Policies, Procedures will be dealt with separately by the senate.  The two motions will be considered at the next senate meeting.

VIII.  Adjournment – The meeting was adjourned.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
_______________________________________________________________________________________________

Click HERE to return to the main Faculty Senate Minutes page.