February 16, 1998
Present: Dave Stetler (for Bob Bates), Landrum Cross, Janet Johnson, Paul Knox, Peggy Meszaros, Carole Nickerson, Gene Brown (for Len Peters), Minnis Ridenour, Jean Eversole (for Ray Smoot), Rich Sorensen, Jack Osborne (for Bill Stephenson), Andy Swiger, Paul Torgersen, Robert Brown, Kelli Campbell (for Raphael Castillejo), Terry Herdman, Ben Poe, Cosby Rogers, Richard Bambach, Norm Marriott, Paul Metz, Frank Gwazdauskas, David de Wolf, Pat Scanlon, Rosemary Goss, Bernard Feldman, Tom Head, Terry Lawrence, Marilyn Norstedt, Nancy Phillips, Ningling Wang, Aaron McClung (for Steve Schneider), Jody Olson
Absent: Erv Blythe, Greg Brown, Peter Eyre, Eileen Hitchingham, Elyzabeth Holford, Charles Steger, Tom Tillar, Sigrid Gustafson, Charles Lytton, Larry Shumsky, Terry Swecker, Deborah Mayo, Kevin Pelzer, Eliza Tse, John Randolph, Bob Benoit, James Yardley, Kay Burke, Gerri Johns, Curtis Lynch, Peggy Rasnick, Rajiv Khosla, Joel Donahue, Tekisha Everette, Moya Toohey, Drew Lichtenberger, Natalie Wilson
Guests: Ralph Byers, David Conn, Marty Day, Wanda Dean, David Ford, Bernard LaBerge, Ed Schwabe, Karen Torgersen
A motion was made and seconded to adopt the agenda as distributed. The motion passed.
Dr. Torgersen noted that the minutes of the February 2, 1998, University Council meeting have been voted on and approved electronically. Once voted upon, University Council minutes can be publicly accessed on the Governance Information System on the WEB.
Dr. Torgersen shared with the University Council members special topics of discussion that will be addressed at today's session.
First Reading - Commission on Graduate Studies and Policies, Resolution 1997-98C, Policy on Auditing Graduate Courses.
Dr. Robert Brown presented the Commission on Graduate Studies and Policies, Resolution 1997-98C: Policy on Auditing Graduate Courses for first reading. Dr. Brown noted that there are three changes:
1) "An audit requires the approval of the instructor and the Graduate School." This was changed to read: "An audit requires the approval of the instructor and the student's graduate advisor."
2) In the paragraph that begins "Registration for audit ... " strike the last sentence which reads "Once a student audits a course, the student may not repeat the course for credit."
3) Add statement at end of resolution which reads: "At the end of the course period, the instructor will determine if an audit is "satisfactory" or "unsatisfactory" based on participation and other expectations set forth at the beginning of the course period. Unsatisfactory audits will not appear on transcripts."
A request was made to have a copy of the resolution with changes before the second reading.
Second Reading, Commission on Undergraduate Studies and Policies, Resolution 1997-98B: Expansion of Admissions Criteria for Students Applying to the Corps of Cadets
Dr. Cosby Rogers presented the Commission on Undergraduate Studies and Policies, Resolution 1997-98B: Expansion of Admissions Criteria for Students Applying to the Corps of Cadets. A motion for approval was made and seconded. Discussion: It was again suggested that "may be" needs to be changed to "should be." A question was raised: "Are we being asked to amend current admissions criteria?" Dr. Rogers commented that the committee that developed the resolution and forwarded it to CUS wants to make it explicit that the criteria would be a consideration in addition to, but not replacing existing selection criteria. Ms. Karen Torgersen, Director of Admissions, explained the admissions process and answered questions regarding the process. There was a concern expressed that "to the degree we give something prominence, we are putting something else in the background." If leadership is first, academics is in the background. In response to a question, Ms. Torgersen stated that the GPAs and SATs of the Corps of Cadets entering freshmen are slightly higher because they are predisposed for engineering. She also commented that the admission decision for a student never comes down to offering admission to one student over another. There is flexibility to offer admission to a group of students. Col. Ed Schwabe explained the need by the Corps of Cadets to emphasize the leadership requirement. Col. Schwabe noted that we do not have wording in our university policy that addresses leadership. He read from the current catalog. He commented that this is an important resolution for the Corps of Cadets. In response to a question raised regarding the need for a statement regarding leadership criteria to be included in the catalog, Col. Schwabe responded that he was told we do not necessarily need to proceed that far, but would benefit from the resolution being presented for approval from University Council. A comment was made that the resolution is worded with flexibility as is needed. Following additional discussion, an amendment was made to substitute the "may's" for "shall's." Ms. Torgersen responded that using shall will make it more binding on the admissions process. Dr. Rogers commented that this resolution is probably not necessary. However, it does not cost a great deal to Admissions and might assist the Corps of Cadets. A comment was made that if it helps the Corps of Cadets it is worth doing. Leadership is criteria that needs to be considered by the Corps. The amendment to change "may" to "shall" was withdrawn and a call for vote was requested.
The resolution was voted on and passed.
Council approved a packet of commission minutes comprised of:
Commission on Graduate Studies and Policies, January 21, 1998, presented by Robert Brown.
Commission on Student Affairs, January 22, 1998, presented by Ms. Kelli Campbell in the absence of Raphael Castillejo.
Commission on Undergraduate Studies and Policies, January 26, 1998, presented by David Ford in the absence of Cosby Rogers.
General Assembly Session in Richmond - Mr. Ralph Byers
Ralph Byers gave an update on the state budget. He reviewed with University Council members a handout showing general and non-general fund operation appropriations for 1996-98 and how Higher Education will be affected. He also outlined the cost of the elimination of the car tax. If the car tax is enacted in its entirety five years from now, the amount of money will be equivalent to the total budget for higher education. Mr. Byers was asked to explain the difference between general fund and non-general fund appropriations. General funds are the basic tax dollars (income tax, sales tax, corporate income tax, etc.). Non-general funds for higher education would be tuition and fees, auxiliary enterprises, grants and contracts. An example of non-general funds relating to the entire state budget would be the gasoline tax designated for highway construction. In summary, we are talking about the difference between designated fees for a particular purpose (non-general) as opposed to the general taxes which are paid to support the overall operations (general). Federal money is generally earmarked for one purpose or another.
Update on Plans for our SACS Reaccreditation Site Visit - Dr. David Conn Dr. Conn gave an overview of the SACS Reaccreditation Site Visit scheduled for March 15-18, 1998 - beginning at 2:00 p.m. on March 15, ending with exit interview at 1:00 p.m. on March 18. The SACS report is on the web. The SACS team will review the report, conduct interviews, and submit recommendations. This will be conducted simultaneously with a visit from the NCAA which will be certifying the university at the same time.
Executive Assistant to the President
Virginia Tech Governance Information URL: http://www.vt.edu/uc/ucm98-02-16.html