Faculty Senate Minutes (Draft)

September 14, 2011 Hardin Valley

 

I.          Call to Order

Meeting was called to order by Brad Rose, Faculty Senate President.  Senators in attendance:  Deanne Michaelson (BCT), Linda Ellams (BCT), John May (Engineering & Media Technology), Sami Ghezawi (Engineering & Media Technology), Trent Eades (English), Keith Norris (English), Lawana Day (English), Joan Easterly (LA), Charles Cardwell (LA), Mike Rose (LA), Jonathan Lamb (Math), Claire Suddeth (Math), Bob Stern (Math), Joan Jackson (NBS), Michael Lusk (NBS), Amy Tankersley (TS), Pam Smith (TS), Rick Bower (LS), Beverly Rogers (Nursing) Robert Baird (Division Street Representative), Ashley Boone (Blount County Representative), Bob Boyd (Magnolia Avenue Representative), Ron Bridges (President), Brad Rose (Business Officer), Nina McPherson (Secretary), Dave Vinson (TBR Rep), Mark Fuentes (Past President), Ken Swayne (Communications Officer), Donn King (Parliamentarian).  Guests:  Lara Kajs, Bob Hasentufel, Marilyn Harper, Leigh Moore, Cindy Cunningham, David Key, Nancy Pevey, Misty Bowers, Valerie Erickson.

 

II.        Approval of Minutes: Brad Rose

 

            Minutes of the July 13, 2011, meeting were approved with minor editorial changes.

 

III.       Adjunct Faculty Representation: Brad Rose

At the July meeting, editorial changes to the Faculty Senate constitution concerning the number and terms of office of the adjunct representatives were presented for consideration.  Previous wording and proposed new wording is below. 

 

Section 5: Adjunct Faculty Representation:  Current Reading

A. Adjunct faculty are entitled to three seats on the Faculty Senate with no two from the same academic department. During the college’s fall adjunct in-service meeting, information is distributed to all adjunct faculty regarding Senate representation. Interested adjunct faculty are encouraged to contact the Senate and/or a designated Senate representative. In order to represent the adjunct faculty and exercise a vote in Faculty Senate business, the adjunct must be teaching in the current major semester (fall or spring). One adjunct representative is elected each year and serves two years or until a successor is elected. Vacancies will be filled by election at the earliest possible Senate meeting.

 

Editorial changes based on July’s Senate meeting:

A.    Adjunct faculty are entitled to three seats on the Faculty Senate with no two from the same academic department. During the college’s fall adjunct in-service meeting, information is distributed to all adjunct faculty regarding Senate representation. Interested adjunct faculty are encouraged to contact the Senate and/or a designated Senate representative. In order to represent the adjunct faculty and exercise a vote in Faculty Senate business, the adjunct must be teaching in the current major semester (fall or spring). One or two adjunct representatives are elected on alternate years.  Each representative serves two years or until a successor is elected. Vacancies will be filled by election at the earliest possible Senate meeting.

 

Ron Bridges made a motion that the proposed change be accepted; motion was seconded.  The motion was passed without objection.

 

Faculty Senate then moved to a vote for adjunct representatives.  Candidates were:

Bob Hasentufel, Engineering and Media Technologies (VPT)

Lara Kajs, M.A., M.Ed., Liberal Arts (History)

David Meredith, English Department (ESL)

W. Leigh Moore, MA, Natural and Behavioral Sciences (Anatomy)

William J. Potter, Business and Computer Technologies

Election required a majority of votes of Senators present.  Elected to two year terms were Lara Kajs and Leigh Moore.  David Meredith was elected to a one year term. 

 

IV.       Officer Reports

           

            Secretary: Nina McPherson – no report

           

Communications:  Ken Swayne – no report

           

TBR Representative:  Dave Vinson

Vinson will submit his notes of the August TBR sub council meeting soon.  He discussed some of the highlights of the meeting.  Dr. Warren Nichols has been selected as the TBR Vice Chancellor for community colleges.  It still isn’t clear whether each community college will maintain its distinctive identity or become a “branch campus” of the system.  The process of approving new academic programs is being discussed.  Currently new programs have to be approved by TBR and then THEC, which can be a lengthy process.  TBR is attempting to change it so that approval is only needed by TBR.  The TBR common calendar committee meets every three years and is currently meeting.  The committee is discussing the possibility of eliminating the fall break and adding those days to the Thanksgiving holiday so that no classes would meet Thanksgiving week.  Discussion was generally negative about this idea; most faculty did not want to have an entire week off that close to the end of the semester.  Vinson and Kathy Byrd are on the TBR plagiarism taskforce.  TBR is reviewing how colleges determine GPA.  Colleges do not use the same process, i.e., some count repeats but some don’t.  This has caused some financial aid problems for students.  Nothing has been decided yet.

 

            President: Ron Bridges

·   Bridges introduced Nancy Pevey as the director of the QEP.  It was stressed that everyone at some point would be involved and the focus of the plan is to improve engagement in the classroom between faculty and students.

·   The search process for the new academic vp has started; the paperwork has been filed and the search committee is being formed.  President Wise’s goal is to have the new person in place by July 1, 2012.  Dr. Wise will be the head of the search committee.

·   Bridges has sent a request to Dr. Wise to convert the open parking lot near the portable buildings into a faculty lot.  Dave Walton is gathering information.

·   Bridges reminded faculty that Good Friday is not a holiday for Spring 2012.  This may or may not be a permanent change. 

·   Bridges reported that some faculty have reported having difficulty making appointments with their retirement representatives, especially TIAA-CREF representatives.  There appears to be insufficient time slots for everyone who would like to meet with their company representative.  Bridges has discussed this issue with our Human Resources office but this is driven by the individual companies.

·   Bridges reported that our proposed new academic freedom policy is still being held up by TBR discussions about their new proposed policy.

·   Bridges provided some background concerning the discussion about proposed changes in the Student Conduct policy.  The proposed changes initiated with TBR’s legal staff. Bridges was made aware of the proposed changes in August when few faculty where available for consultation.  Initially there was only a short time to respond.  Bridges emailed senators on the executive committee and the three English department senators for their thoughts on the new policy.  All of those responses were negative about (a) reducing the direct authority of the faculty members and (b) conceding final decisions concerning student grades to the Vice President for Student Affairs .  These changes were initiated by the VP-Student Affairs, but were based on upcoming changes to TBR policy.  Because there has been so much push back from several presidents, TBR has put a hold on their decision, which has put a hold on our changes.  This issue may resurface in October.  If it does, Bridges will consult with Mark Fuentes, Trent Eades, Bob Stern, and Lara Kajs to create the faculty response.

·   Bridges met with Representative Ryan Haynes on campus.  Haynes said that he is receptive to meeting with faculty and hearing their issues.  No date was set.

·   Bridges is concerned about the effectiveness and timeliness of communications.  Many times announcements about activities don’t come out until after the event.  He asked for ideas about improvements.  There was discussion about the use of blogs and message boards.  This discussion will be continued.

·   D2L email was discussed.  Audrey Williams is open to suggestions about changes.  Some options she suggested were delete it, hide it, open it up (auto forward/let messages in), leave it as is.  This discussion will be on the October Faculty Senate agenda.

·   D2L grades to MyPellissippi Grades may be possible this year.

·   College listservs were discussed.  The default setting for the reply function can be changed so that “reply” will go only to the sender of the email and not to the entire listserv.  Charles Cardwell made a motion that was seconded to request that this change be made to the faculty listserv.  The motion was passed with no objections.  The moderation of the listservs was discussed under New Business.

 

V.        Committee Reports

 

            Adjunct Faculty:  Lara Kajs, Leigh Moore

·         The need for office space for adjuncts was discussed.  There have been student complaints about noise in the adjunct office area in the Library and faculty are concerned about the lack of privacy.  Bridges will discuss this with President Wise.

·         Adjunct faculty would like to pursue the possibility of taking classes for free; Bridges will discuss this with President Wise.

           

·         Student Scholarships:  NBS Representative – No report

 

·         Rules:  Donn King

There is no Rules Committee at this time, although Leigh Moore volunteered to be on the committee.  King advised staying with Roberts Rules of Order. 

                       

·         Nominating Committee:  Nina McPherson

A committee will not be needed to be formed until fall semester 2012 to prepare for election of a president-elect in spring 2013.

 

·         Promotion/Tenure:  Mark Fuentes

The process has started; letters informing people of their eligibility have been mailed.  There are discussions about changing the documentation required so that the portfolios are not so voluminous.

           

·         Faculty Development: Ron Bridges

Bridges is looking for volunteers to be on this committee.  Nancy Pevey will join the committee because much of the QEP will involve teaching workshops. A QEP Café site has been created in D2L and will be developed during this academic year.   All faculty will be welcomed to join by fall 2012.

 

·         Faculty Lecture Series: Trent Eades

Lectures during fall 2011 semester are:

Sept. 22 – The Music of Revolution (Larry Vincent, 12:30, Clayton Performing Arts Center)

Oct. 27 – Joan of Arc: Heroine, Heretic, Saint (Joan Easterly, 12:30, Goins Auditorium)

Nov. 17 – We Don’t Need No Education (Alex Fitzner, 12:30 Goins Auditorium)

 

Lectures during spring 2012 semester are:

Feb. 21 – Stem Cells, The Hope of the Future (Susan McMahan, 12:30, Goins Auditorium)

March 21 – Women in Film (Katie Lovette, 1pm, Goins Auditorium)

April TBA – Economics, The Musical (Tyra Barrett)

 

·         Faculty Hiring Adhoc: Charles Cardwell

            Cardwell requested volunteers who are interested in being on this ad hoc committee.

 

VI.       Unfinished Business

            None

 

VII,     Discussion

·         Communications: FacStaff  listserv: Trent Eades

Faculty still have concerns about the moderation of the Fac_Staff list.  Communication between faculty and staff is stifled and timeliness of approval for posting messages are major concerns. Eades presented the following resolution for vote: “Resolved, That the Faculty Senate urges the administration to cease moderation of the Fac_Staff mailing list.” The resolution was passed without any objections.  (Attachment 1)

 

           

·         UCW on Campus – Trent Eades

Currently United Campus Workers (UCW) has to pay rent to use campus facilities and cannot use college email.  Eades will discuss these issues with President Wise before the October meeting. Eades withdrew further discussion of the UCW until the October meeting. 

 

·         Resolution commending Dr. Wise – Trent Eades/Keith Norris

Norris presented the following resolution for vote:  “”Resolved, That the Faculty Senate commends Dr. Anthony Wise for his commitment to the students, staff, and faculty at Pellissippi State Community College.”  The resolution was passed without any objections. (Attachment 2)

           

VIII.    New Business:

Dave Vinson presented his concerns about safety concerns at the Hardin Valley exit off of Pellissippi Parkway.  Traffic backs up on Pellissippi Parkway, causing safety concerns for drivers on the Parkway as well drivers trying to exit.  This is especially a problem during the hours of 8AM and 9AM.  Vinson asked that someone discuss this problem with appropriate government staff.  Bridges will discuss this with Fred Breiner, Director of Safety and Security.

           

IX.       Announcements-

Date of the April 2012 meeting will be April 18, not Friday April 13.

Next meeting-Wednesday, October 19, 3:30 PM – Division Street Campus, Room number will be announced

 

X.        Adjournment

            Meeting adjourned at 6:00PM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Attachment 1  Resolution re Commendation for Dr. Wise

 

Faculty Senate of Pellissippi State Community College

 

Resolution Condemning the Censorship of the Fac_Staff Email List

 

Whereas, On Feb. 24, 2009, the administration of Pellissippi State Community

College abruptly and without notice began censoring the Fac_Staff email list;

 

            Whereas, The Fac_Staff email list was the only means by which all employees of Pellissippi State engaged each other in free and open discussion;

 

            Whereas, The faculty were not consulted on this change and were given no opportunity to voice concerns prior to the censorship;

 

            Whereas, According to Pellissippi State Policies and Procedures 01:03:01, the Faculty Senate is charged with participating in the development of college policy;

 

            Whereas, Institutions of higher learning, whose responsibilities include fostering the free inquiry of ideas in the pursuit of Truth, have an obligation to live by the ideals they claim to endorse;

 

            Whereas, Contention in free and open discussion is not to be feared but is, rather, a sign of a healthy community;

 

            Whereas, One of Pellissippi’s obligations is to foster debate on matters crucial to life in a free and open society;

 

            Whereas, Censorship of the Fac_Staff email list belies Pellissippi’s claims to foster open inquire and free exchange of ideas;

 

            Whereas, The faculty of Pellissippi have reason to believe that the current administration is not only sensitive to the legitimate and compelling concerns of Pellissippi faculty and staff but also shares them;

 

            Whereas, Alternative systems of communication between faculty and staff that do not have the same scope, reach, and utility as an uncensored Fac_Staff email list are insufficient for disseminating information and fostering the discussion that is crucial for achieving our mission; Therefore be it

 

            Resolved, That the Faculty Senate once again urges the administration to immediately cease censoring the Fac_Staff email list; and

 

            Resolved, That the Faculty Senate urges the administration to abandon any plans to implement communication systems designed to replace the Fac_Staff email list that do not have same scope, reach, and utility.

 

 

 

Attachment 2 Resolution re Moderation of Fac_Staff List

 

Faculty Senate of Pellissippi State Community College

 

 

Whereas, the Faculty Senate of Pellissippi State Community is pleased that the TBR Hiring Committee and TBR Chancellor John Morgan listened to the advice of many Pellissippi students, staff, and faculty and selected Dr. Anthony Wise, one of Pellissippi’s own, to be its new president;

 

Whereas, Dr. Anthony Wise in a short period of time has taken steps to improve the working conditions and compensations of Pellissippi’s adjunct faculty;

 

Whereas, Dr. Anthony Wise has demonstrated his awareness of the power of symbolism by restoring the traditional names to Pellissippi’s administrative divisions;

 

Whereas, Dr. Anthony Wise has shown in many ways his commitment to being accessible to faculty;

 

Whereas, Dr. Anthony Wise has shown his commitment to faculty efforts to improve student performance, including his support for service learning, the Faculty Lecture Series, TnCIS, and many other projects;

 

Whereas, Morale at Pellissippi is the highest it has been in years because of Dr. Anthony Wise’s appointed and by his recent actions; Therefore, be it

 

Resolved, That the Faculty Senate with great pleasure congratulates Dr. Anthony Wise on his appointment as the President of Pellissippi State Community College; and

 

Resolved, That the Faculty Senate commends Dr. Anthony Wise for his commitment to the students, staff, and faculty at Pellissippi State Community College.