ABSTRACT of Faculty Senate April 5, 2010

Daniel Larner, Faculty Senate President, called the 2009-2010 Senate to order at 4:04 pm.  Senators accepted Senate minutes of March 8, 2010 and Standing Committee minutes, including 3/3/2010 and 3/10/2010 UPRC minutes which include motions on intermediate capital projects and minor works.

·         President Larner: 1) reported that he is not still working on the possibility of reconciling the President’s program elimination policy with the faculty handbook, but instead is drafting a proposal to include more significant input from faculty governance on when such a policy would be triggered.

·         Larner proposed ideas for the spring Senate agendas, one of which will include discussion of the General Studies program, as well as the White Paper for Extended Education and Summer Programs.

·         Provost Riordan reported that the legislature may make a decision on the budget in the coming week. Riordan and the Vice Presidents have been working on proposals to protect the units from larger cuts, and she is impressed by the level of creativity involved.  Greater cuts are proposed than it is hoped we need to take.  If the cut is smaller UPRC will be influential in advising the president and others of priorities. Riordan added that proposed reductions attempt to sustain student access to classes.  Riordan added that self-sustaining resources will be more important than ever before and may differ across disciplines.

·         Riordan addressed the access issue and the need to enable students to be successful in shorter periods of time, and to avoid roadblocks to graduation through improved advising.  Riordan spoke about policy changes that may prevent students from retaking class an unlimited number of times to improve the grade. Riordan acknowledged the value of Western’s upper division classes and the need to find new ways of collaborating across disciplines, greater support for EESP, longer term contracts for limited term faculty, and other innovative arrangements to avoid damage to the great job Western does at the junior and senior level.

·         Riordan expects completion of the data warehouse this summer, with enhanced information available to faculty and administrators.  Riordan is conducting a search for the new director of EESP, and for a special assistant to the provost, the latter a 12-month faculty position that may include teaching.

·         Marsha Riddle Buly, Legislative Liaison, encouraged faculty to lobby legislators and recommended the TVW presentation “Inside Olympia” at which President Shepard and Bill Lyne, president of the United Faculty of Washington State appeared with Mike Bogatay from the Washington Student Association.  The TVW interviews focus on the impact of Washington's cuts to higher education.  The interviews are in the Friday April 2 issue of Western Today; the link is http://www.news.wwu.edu/go/doc/1538/509739/  . Riddle Buly encouraged showing the video clip in the classroom as well as sending it to family, friends and neighbors.

·         Ramon Rinonos-Diaz, ASVP-Academics, reported 1) AS is assessing current AS offices and creating new ones involved in disability outreach and engagement programs; 2) there are 19 student candidates campaigning for seven positions on the AS, and faculty are asked to encourage students to vote; 3) students interested in the trustee position can pick up a packet in AS504; 4) AS is reviewing the renewable energy fee.

·         Senators heard a presentation on the new Capital Planning process from Rick Benner, Executive Director, Capital Planning, and Francis Halle, Director, Space Administration, Management and suggested that greater communication with faculty was needed during the implementation processes.  Senators applauded Benner and Halle for an outstanding job in creating an open and transparent bottom-up process at the same time acknowledging challenges.  When buildings remain “works-in-progress” long after they are built a process is needed to record original stakeholder ideas in order to provide benchmarking during construction and post-operative evaluation. 

Senators voted to adjourn at 5:45 pm.


APPOINTMENTS AND ELECTIONS – Chuck Lambert, Appointments Officer

Senate Elections:  Ballots are open for the 2010-12 Senate elections until April 16th and faculty can vote via Blackboard.  Senators are asked to encourage constituents and colleagues to vote.

Appointment to GSAC

1)       LeAnn Robinson, Special Education, appointed by the Woodring governance body to GSAC.

2)      Roger Anderson, Biology; and Susan Mancuso, Educational Leadership appointed to serve as co-chairs of the GSAC.  The chairmanship is an appointment made jointly by the Provost and the Senate.