The regular monthly meeting of the Faculty Senate was called to order on May 3, 2001, at 3:02 PM, in the LaSells Stewart Center by President Henry Sayre. There were no corrections to the minutes of April 2001.
– Action Items: Two Category I Proposals: Establish a new study abroad program in Tunisia and the Initiation of a New Instructional Program leading to the Degree of Bachelor of Science, Arts in Computational Physics; OSU/U of O Joint Athletic Motion; Endorsement of the Athletics Minority/Gender Equity Plans; PAC-10 Joint Athletic Recommendations; and a PEBB Resolution [Motion 01–566–01 through 13]
– Special Report: The OSU National Newspaper Study
– New Business: None
Members Absent Without Representation:
Abbott, Ahearn, Ahern, Baggott, Beatty, Bliss, Bontrager, Bowman, Braker, Brooks, Bruce, Burt, Ciuffetti, Collier, Cornelius, De Carolis, Douglas, Downing, Gregory, Hamm, Heidel, Horne, M. Huber, Jones, King, John Lee, Li, Merickel, Mundt, Sanderson, Schwab, Selker, Stang, Strik, Tesch, Trehu, Tynon, and Weber.
Faculty Senate Officers, Ex-Officios and Staff Present:
H. Sayre, President; N. Rosenberger, President-Elect; G. Matzke, Immediate Past President; R. Iltis, Parliamentarian; Ex-Officios - J. Roach and T. White; and V. Nunnemaker, Senate Staff.
Guests of the Senate:
P. Broadus, S. Francis, L. Friedman, J. Lundy, R. Michael, S. Randhawa, L. Rice, R. Specter, M. Vydra, and T. White.
Category | Proposals
Len Friedman, Curriculum Council Chair, presented two Category I proposals for approval:
1) Initiation of a New Instructional Program leading to the Degree of Bachelor of Science, Arts in Computational Physics
Friedman noted that this proposal had been unanimously approved by the Curriculum Council. There was no discussion. Motion 01-566-01 to approve the Computational Physics proposal passed by voice vote with no dissenting votes
2) Establish a new study abroad program in Tunisia
Friedman noted that this proposal had also been unanimously approved by the Curriculum Council.
In response to a concern expressed by Senator Thies, Science, regarding student safety, Senator Krause, Liberal Arts, indicated that the State Department asserts it is a safe country to visit and Laura Rice stated there have been no challenges to either foreign students or foreign faculty.
Motion 01-566-02 to approve the Tunisia proposal passed by voice vote with no dissenting votes.
OSU/U of O Joint Athletic Motion
President Sayre presented the following Joint Athletic Motion from the OSU and U of O Faculty Senates. This joint motion is aimed at emphasizing that academics come first. He noted that the following motion was passed unanimously by the University of Oregon Faculty Senate on April 14.
President Henry Sayre presented the following endorsement regarding the Athletics Minority/Gender Equity Plans that were distributed at the April Faculty Senate meeting and sent to those not present. The plans are included in the recommendations from the recent NCAA Certification visit.
Having reviewed the recommendations of the NCAA Certification Evaluation Team, the Oregon State University Faculty Senate endorses the proposed Athletics Minority and Gender Equity Plans.
Motion 01-566-06 to approve the above endorsement passed by voice vote with no dissenting votes and no discussion.
PAC-10 Joint Athletic Recommendations
President Sayre introduced this item by explaining that the PAC-10 Faculty/University Senate Presidents felt that institution presidents needed the support from their faculty to slow the rapid expansion and commercialization of athletics at NCAA Division I universities. He noted that PAC-10 participation in this issue includes passage by the Arizona State Faculty Senate who met in special session earlier in the week; UO will vote in mid-May; USC has gone forward with it; the University of Arizona Senate Executive Committee endorsed it and forwarded it to their president; and other institutions are considering it. Sayre presented the following recommendations for approval:
In introducing this item, President Sayre noted that Vice President Rob Specter had met with Faculty Economic Welfare and Retirement Committee members and the Executive Committee and indicated that administration has been working very hard on behalf of the faculty.
Robert Michael, Faculty Economic Welfare and Retirement Committee member, outlined three PEBB issues that are of concern to the committee and presented a related motion.
Michael introduced the PEBB tiered compensation model that most of the committee opposes because they feel this plan is unfair and results in unequal amounts of benefits. Michael provided hypothetical monthly information for benefits under a tier model: an employee only would receive $470; employee and children - $478.19; employee and spouse/partner - $560.69; and employee and family - $573.49. He felt that individual benefits should not be reallocated to subsidize the benefits of others, since that would result in a pay cut to some unclassified employees.
The second concern is that of losing the current cashback which allows employees to receive the balance of their health care allocation as pay. The committee felt this was an important issue since 2,145 unclassified employees received $986,000 in cashback during the January-March 2001 period, and the tiered system will affect the amount of cashback. Michael noted that a reduction in cashback will affect salary and, ultimately, retirement benefits.
Michael noted that VP Specter warned that benefits costs will rise significantly (possibly 24-25%) for the next benefit period.
The third issue is to encourage cessation of subsidies to HMOs. He noted that this may be a moot point since he is hearing that HMO coverage may not be an option in the next benefit period.
Michael noted that VP Specter reiterated the day prior that OUS has requested that Governor Kitzhaber allow them to withdraw from PEBB, to which Kitzhaber responded negatively. There have been discussions that OUS employees, as a whole, are a healthier group and costs could be lowered. Another discussion is that OUS unclassified employees may not be a large enough group alone to qualify for lower cost coverage, but may be large enough with the addition of students and others.
Michael presented the following motion which was created and endorsed by the Executive Committee upon recommendation of the Faculty Economic Welfare and Retirement Committee:
Whereas, PEBB's proposed tiered system of insurance coverage and elimination of cashback result in unequal benefit support for different employees based upon such personal factors as marital/partner status and family size; and
Whereas, Benefits are a form of compensation, and their decrease amounts to a decrease in compensation; and
Whereas, No unclassified employee should suffer a reduction in compensation as a result of the restructuring of benefits; and
Whereas, We would like to encourage PEBB in its efforts to de-emphasize high-cost HMOs by eliminating all subsidies previously used to provide incentives for enrollment in these HMOs; therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Faculty Senate of Oregon State University urges that OSU and OUS administrators continue to resist efforts to move to a tiered system;
Mark Floyd and Robert Hood, News and Communication Services, presented the results of The OSU National Newspaper Study. Between mid-December 1999 and April 2000 they studied national news stories related to higher education in the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, USA Today, and the Oregonian. This was undertaken as an assessment tool for their department to determine how OSU is reported on the national scene. Sports stories were not included in the study.
The results showed that, of 2,472 articles related to higher education, 45% were research related; 22% came directly from national journals; 24% related to medical/health news; 16% were from expert sources; 2% were generated from new university programs; 2% related to gifts/grants/funding; 1% related to educational administration; and <1% related to honors and awards.
The breakdown on the origin of research studies was as follows: 48% were articles published in national journals; 27% were generated by reporters; 10% were lectures at major national academic conferences; 8% were university announcements; and 5% were book releases.
The ten institutions mentioned most often, and number of articles, in the national news were: UCLA, 119; Harvard, 118; UC-Berkeley, 111; USC, 104; Stanford, 84; OSU, 83; Columbia, 67; UO, 64; University of Pennsylvania, 57; and University of Michigan, 57. Over half of the stories from both Harvard and UC-Berkeley were research related.
The New York Times, Los Angeles Times and USA Today were analyzed when determining how OSU compared to comparable institutions. OSU ranked fourth with seven articles behind UC-Davis (20), UO (11), and North Carolina State (8). Five of the seven OSU articles came directly from research studies; two came from national journals; and two came from articles that used OSU experts. In all cases, OSU received national coverage only when associated with research studies. Hood noted that 7 of the 11 UO articles were related to Nike.
Floyd noted that, in addition to research, there are two other ways faculty can receive national publicity. He noted that, when publishing, it helps to be controversial, topical and to publish with good publishers - basically, publish what is interesting to the public. Also, he encouraged faculty to become involved in activities at the national level.
– Fireside Chat – Dr. Risser will hold a Fireside Chat on May 23 from 3:00-4:00 in the MU Lounge.
– Undergraduate Admissions Issue Group – The Undergraduate Admissions Issue Group will present A Symposium on Changing the Criteria for Undergraduate Admissions on May 24 from 1:30-3:00 PM in MU 206.
– Promotion and Tenure Brownbag – The Faculty Senate Promotion & Tenure Committee is sponsoring a Promotion and Tenure Brownbag on May 9 from noon-1:00 p.m. in MU 206.
– Commencement 2001 – Commencement 2001 is scheduled for June 17th. Since this will be the first year that the undergraduate Commencement will be an afternoon event in Reser Stadium and the morning graduate Commencement will take place in the LaSells Stewart Center, there are many unknown situations and ushers are needed. To volunteer as an usher, please contact Joan Sandeno (737-4520 or Joan.Sandeno@ orst.edu) and indicate your campus e-mail and/or telephone number, as well as whether you are available for the morning or afternoon ceremony, both, or as needed.
Provost White commended Susan Shaw and the Difference, Power and Discrimination program for bringing Morris Dees to OSU for a spectacular speaking engagement. Other comments included:
Budget – The state's budget forecast will be released on May 14. Between mid-May and mid-June there will be an opportunity for the campus to engage in budget conversations. White noted that all OUS institutions have been authorized to adjust tuition between 2% and 5%.
Promotion and Tenure – Provost White is concerned about inconsistent policies and criteria within and among units on campus and will look to the Faculty Senate to engage in earnest conversations about this issue. He will bring details to the Executive Committee. There were 82 cases considered during the week of April 23 and he hopes to be able to announce the decisions by the third week in May.
The practice has been to wait until all promotion and tenure cases in a college have been decided prior to notification of anyone in that college. Provost White's questions to the Senate were, how important this practice was to faculty and to the university and should decisions be released individually as they are known. He requested that responses be sent to him electronically.
President Sayre had no report.
There was no new business
Meeting was adjourned at 5:06 PM.
Faculty Senate Staff