February 21, 2000
Present: Greg Brown, Ben Dixon, Peter Eyre, Eileen Hitchingham, Janet Johnson, Paul Knox, Peggy Meszaros, Kim O'Rourke, Martha Johnson (for Len Peters), Jennie Reilly, Lisa Wilkes (for Minnis Ridenour), Ray Smoot, Hap Bonham (for Rich Sorensen), Charles Steger, Andy Swiger, Pat Hyer (for Kay Heidbreder), Cindy Harrison, Mitzi Vernon, Julia Beamish, Irene Leech, Terry Herdman, Sean Blackburn, Jay Sullivan, Joe Hunnings, Richard Bambach, Paul Metz, Tim Pratt, John Hillison, John Randolph, Rebecca Crittenden, Pat Devens, John Williams (for Suzanne Murrmann), John Seiler, Pete Martens (via phone), Delbert Jones, Ben Poe, Erin Hanley (for Kimberly DeGuise), Shawn Breck, Drew Lichtenberger, Kylie Felps (for Taj Mahon-Haft), Aaron McClung, Seth Wood (for Laurie Steneck)
Absent: Bob Bates, Erv Blythe, Landrum Cross, Carole Nickerson, Bill Stephenson, Tom Tillar, Skip Fuhrman, Kamal Rojiani, Deborah Mayo, Eliza Tse, Sam Hicks, Bernard Feldman, Rodney Gaines, Jovette Gadson, Donna Cassell, Anita Haney, Aaron Hill, Tomoya Ochinero, Mike Whipple, Peter Zippelius
Guests: Ron Daniel, David Ford, Marvin Foushee
A motion was made and seconded to adopt the agenda. The motion carried.
Dr. Steger noted that the minutes from the February 7, 2000, 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. Steger updated Council members in regard to activities in Richmond. Both Senate and House put in budget amendments to adjust faculty salaries to a level to keep pace with the 60th percentile objective. The Senate asked for 3.5% for classified staff salaries. This is based on current information, but could change. There is money in the budget to address some operating needs; Virginia Tech may get $1.2 million. We also got money for the "Plan to Serve Virginia Agriculture." $10 million has been budgeted in the Senate for capital projects.
Dwight Shelton added that in the House there is perhaps up to $18 million for the equipment trust fund. Some maintenance reserve funds have been budgeted on both sides, $10 million in Senate and $20 million in House. $2 million is needed to complete the Chemistry/Physics building due to cost overrun, and this has been authorized. In response to a question regarding library budget, Dwight Shelton responded that this was combined with other critical operating needs requests.
Provost Meszaros gave an update on the promotion and tenure process. Sixty-eight dossiers are being reviewed. A two-day meeting took place last week, a preliminary vote was taken, and the committee meets this Friday to hear any appeals and for a final vote which is a recommendation to the Provost who makes a recommendation to the President. The committee will also be looking at considered revisions in the dossier preparation. There are recommendations from the Commission on Outreach and Commission on Faculty Affairs. The continued appointment process will also be considered - there are four dossiers.
Commission on Outreach Resolution 1999-2000A, Resolution Regarding Change in membership (to include Director of the Center for Organizational and Technological Advancement as an ex-officio member). Chair Irene Leech presented this resolution for first reading.
Commission on Outreach Resolution 1999-2000B, Resolution Regarding Change in membership (to include Director of the Institute for Distance and Distributed Learning as an ex-officio member). Chair Irene Leech presented this resolution for first reading.
Commission on Graduate Studies and Policies Resolution 1999-2000B
Resolution Regarding Merger of the Agricultural and Applied Economics and Economics Ph.D. Degrees into a Single Ph.D. Degree in Economics Commission Chair Julia Beamish presented this resolution for second reading. The resolution was moved, seconded and approved unanimously.
Commission on Undergraduate Studies and Policies Resolution
Resolution Regarding the Membership of the University Athletic Committee Commission Chair Jay Sullivan presented this resolution for second reading. Chair Sullivan noted this change is requested with consideration given for racial diversity. In response to a question regarding the number of ethnic students on athletic teams, Dean Swiger responded it is more than 20%. The resolution was moved, seconded and passed. Vote 40 to 1.
Virginia Tech Staff Senate Resolution 1999-2000A
Revision to the Bylaws Amendment Procedure of the Virginia Tech Staff Senate Virginia Tech Staff Senate President Delbert Jones presented this resolution for first reading. Delbert Jones noted that Staff Senate's revision is designed to allow By-laws change without recourse to Council action. This would be the same as rules followed by Faculty Senate and the same as what Robert's Rules of Order say. The resolution was moved, seconded and passed unanimously.
In response to a question, "majority" will be researched and clarification will be reported to University Council members.
Council approved a packet of Commission minutes comprised of:
Minutes of University Advisory Council on Strategic Budgeting and Planning, December 9, 1999 and January 27, 2000.
Dr. Raymond Smoot, Vice President for Finance, reported that a fire earlier today at Foxridge Apartments destroyed twelve apartments. No one was injured. There were students who could not get to class through no fault of their own. Dr. Landrum Cross, Vice President for Student Affairs, reported that staff from his area were at the scene to provide assistance. There is an emergency fund for short-term purchase of incidentals students need in the next 24 to 48 hours.
Update on MWF Fifteen Minute Break Issue - Presented by Marvin Foushee, Assistant Registrar
Marvin Foushee distributed and reviewed with Council members a handout reflecting the 15-minute break for MWF classes. This schedule was faculty developed. Presidential Policy Memorandum 177 was passed April 7, 1997, with an effective date to be implemented by the Registrar's office fall 1998. This implementation was reviewed extensively. While the implementation was being studied, the University chose to switch to the Banner Student Record System delaying the implementation until fall 2000. This break change is necessary because the distance between academic buildings is greater than it has been before. There has been an extensive expansion of the campus since the ten minute break was implemented many years ago, thus making it impossible to get from one building to another at opposite ends of the campus in ten minutes. Also, congestion in buildings' stairs and halls interferes with travel timeliness between consecutive classes.
The effect of the new schedule will not be known until it is implemented this fall. It is hoped that the new schedule will accommodate the needs of both students and faculty. Banner has the capability to accommodate these changes.
Fifteen-minute breaks for MWF classes were passed through Governance with a reasonably close vote following extensive discussion. Faculty shared that the ten-minute break has been a problem in their MWF class. Students arrive late and leave early in order to get to their next class. Dr. Bambach feels that by not allowing students enough time to get from one class to another we are taking their tuition and not letting them get their education.
Dr. Steger adjourned the meeting at 3:40 p.m.
Executive Assistant to the President
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