ABSTRACT of Faculty Senate October 26, 2009

Daniel Larner, Faculty Senate President, called the 2009-2010 Senate to order at 4:03 pm.  Senators accepted Senate minutes of October 12, 2009 as well as Standing Committee minutes.

·         President Larner reported on continued efforts to define issues and coordinate action around enrollment planning and graduate studies. 

·         Larner reported that the ACC passed a motion to create an Ad Hoc Committee on Academic Policy to work with the Registrar to clarify catalog language for students.

·         Scott Pearce, Senate representative to UPRC, reported that the UPRC had passed motions to approve the new capital planning process and the operating budget timeline process.  Both help increase transparency and provide more developed ways of moving the decision-making process forward.

·         President Shepard reflected on the loss of colleague Michael Grimes and the immediate caring response of those connected such as Brent Carbajal, Viva Barnes, Dan Boxberger, and others.  Shepard reported that it is not Western policy to censor student writing in the Western Front even if we might not agree with the point of view.

·         Shepard reported he had met with a number of federal legislators, alums and friends of the university which reinforced for him the idea that we need a strategic focus and that we ought to take advantage of federal funding.

·         Provost Riordan suggested that funding opportunities might exist in partnerships with community colleges.  Program-based initiatives are also a way to respond to state needs and approach financial institutions.  Riordan recommended bringing ideas forward to Chairs who can move them forward up the administrative chain.

·         Constituent Concerns:  1) The question of using “Expedia” or other sources as a less costly alternative to Bellingham Travel was raised.  Senators were encouraged to use departmental corporate credit cards and learned that reimbursement will be immediate as long as the TA and other paperwork is done properly.  2) The sudden doubling of health insurance premiums and deductibles in the State appear to be a huge back-door salary cut.  Constituents will bring the topic forward to Steve Garfinkle, President of UFWW.

·         Following a short break Senators moved to a Caucus at 4:47 pm.  At 5 pm Senators returned to regular meeting.

·         Senators heard Steve Swan, Vice President University Relations, present the current branding initiative to market Western’s “promise”. Senators commented extensively and agreed on the importance of being able to convey Western’s story of excellence to legislators, students past, present and future, and to parents and community members. 

·         Senators adjourned at 5:43 pm.


APPOINTMENTS AND ELECTIONS – Chuck Lambert, Appointments Officer

Senators approved the following roster of appointments to various university committees:

UPRC (Appointed by Graduate Council members):  Steve Sulkin, SPMC

Faculty Awards Committee:    Deb Currier (Wtr Qtr),Theater, Babafemi Akinrinade, Fairhaven,

                                                     Frances  Howard-Snyder, Philosophy; Trula Nicholas, Human Services;

                                                     Ozan Sula, Economics; Joe Garcia, Bowman Chair        

Student Publications Council:  Kent Smith, Art; Perry Fizzano, CS; Ee Lin Lee, Communication;

                                                      Gail Coulter, Special Education (to be appointed Nov. 9)

LGBTConcerns Committee:     Garth Amundson,  Art