Faculty Senate
Vol. 37, No. 5
October 24, 2002

 I.  Roll Call.

Present:  Barmore, Beck, Brooks, Cravins, Gendreau, Gibson, Hoar, Hollenback, Kernozek, Krajewski, Majak, L. Nelson, Poulton, Ragan, Senger, Taylor, Tyser, Wingate, Zellmer

Excused:  Barnd, Dixon, Kelly, A. Nelson, Vandenberg-Daves.

II.  Approval of Minutes.
The minutes of the 10-10-02 meeting were approved as distributed.

III.  Reports.

A.  Chancellor Hastad recently returned from a staff meeting with UW-System President Lyall and other Chancellors to get a sense of where we are and where we are going with respect to the State budget.  Bottom line is that no one really knows – unpredictable given the governors race.  The State is facing a huge deficit and will not know anything until after election.  He welcomes questions/concerns, and reminded Senators that in these times, the ever-changing landscape is the only constant.

Monitoring admissions applications – UWL is up almost 100% as are other campuses across System, a result of the admission freeze last year.  The quality of students continues to rise and admissions people pour over every application.  As we continue to become more popular, the interest increases.

Chancellor Hastad made a few comments about items on the faculty senate agenda: (1) the All University Council is intended to be a representative group of folks around campus.  Classified staff members, students and the Academic Staff Council have endorsed the concept.  He is requesting a list of four faculty names from which he will choose two.  There is no governance power whatsoever.  In fact, it’s been his practice to not pick governance leaders to serve on the Council, since governance leaders have direct and regular access to administration, and are part of the decision-making process on campus.  (2) Reorganization proposal for the College of HPERTE – Dr. Hastad has experience in this particular unit and is very interested in strengthening the academic component within the College.  He believes the time has come to take a serious look at reorganization.

Lastly, Chancellor Hastad reported that Tim Lewis, the UWL Admission Director, participated in a teleconference with President Lyall and Admissions Directors from across the State.

Lyall was grilled for 5 hrs – one of the legislators said at conclusion that she can expect UW-System to be cut $100M to $300M.  Times are very difficult.  Chancellor Hastad indicated he will pay more attention to comments after elections.   Advice is to listen to Governor.  Budget correction last time was $44M; 4.7% is UWL’s percentage within System budget.

Provost/Vice-Chancellor Hitch continues her quest to meet with each academic department.  Tomorrow she will reach the halfway point having met with 17 of the 32 departments.  She reported that since the last faculty senate meeting, she has spent a good deal of time working on the data in reference to the reorganization plan as well as the strategic planning document.

Georges Cravins reported that the next Faculty Representatives meeting is scheduled for November 1st.

IV.  Reorganization of Athletics and Campus Recreation.
Provost Hitch has met with the Exercise & Sport Science department as a whole, and heard all points of view - some favorable some less favorable.  She has also met with a small group from Educational Studies as well as all four departmental chairs.    The drive behind the proposed reorganization doesn’t have anything to do with the strength of the unit.  Indeed, the reorganization could advantage us and we would have a nice full pool of people.  P/VC Hitch distributed a table of the organizational structures of 43 out of the 76 public Division III Institutions.  While the list is all over the board in terms of size, in the majority of institutions, Athletics reports to Student Affairs.

M/S/P to reconsider.  (voice vote)

M/S to approve the proposed College of HPERTE reorganization plan.

Delores Heiden, chair of Education Studies, spoke to colleagues within the college to get a sense of how they feel about the proposal.  Department doesn’t have a strong feeling – they are either supportive or neutral.  Of greater interest is that we have a successful dean search.  Personally believes the College is a good fit.  She is proud to be a member of the college and favors the proposal. 

Dick Swantz, member of the Education Studies Department, co-chaired the most recent search for the Dean of HPERTE.  In that case, the pool lacked gender diversity.  His bias is that he spent the first 40 years of his career in K-12, and is currently in his 5th year of higher education.  During the next decade we will need more than 2 million new K-12 teachers.  Universities will play a critical role in providing teacher leaders and this campus has a wonderful reputation across the State.  He believes the current proposal may increase chances of a successful dean search. 

Senator Gibson reported on recent conversations with ESS faculty.  He thanked Provost Hitch for her discussions with faculty.  Questions concern the future and what will happen.  Athletics receive 1/3 of their budget from 102 dollars.  Where positions report to two deans there are facility concerns, positions concerns, budget issues, and more.  Perhaps one of the biggest concerns is that reorganization breaks up the teacher/coach model.  The ESS faculty is mildly supportive (50.5% in favor) – they are team players and want to support the institution – they are not opposed to the reorganization but none of the questions have been answered.  They see potential problems in long-term. 

The motion to approve the proposed reorganization of Athletics and Campus Recreation passed.  (show of hands:  17-yes, 0-no, 2-abstaining)

V.  Continued Discussion of the Strategic Planning Document.
Chair Senger feels we have an obligation to do a thorough review of the document.  The SEC has discussed the review process with Provost Hitch.  The senate will spend the rest of this meeting and the next meeting proceeding through each section, accumulating a collection of comments.  The senate will then conclude the process with final motions that capture organizational changes.  At that time, the P/VC, working with a writing committee will produce a revised draft.

General comments – departmental responses – overall considerations

Billy Clow, chair of the Strategic Planning Committee, confirmed that the intention is to get feedback, edit, revise document and bring back.  Know things have been missed such as discussion of graduate education.

Chancellor Hastad acknowledged that a strategic plan is important to any organization, particularly now.  UWL has been at this process for a number of months – 100s of people have had input.  He echoed Chair Senger’s remarks and endorses the SEC suggestion to work with the PVC.  Lastly, he thanked Billy who has worked so hard and did a wonderful job in getting the document to this point.

Dan Duquette, Interim Director of Graduate Studies, thanked Billy and committee.  Graduate Studies at UW-L is the 3rd largest within System with 24 masters degrees, one educational specialist – a few more on their way – approaching 30 very soon.  Most other comprehensives have fewer than 10.  Approximately 1800 students, 600 on campus.  Spring 2003 will graduate over 500 students.  Real important for strategic plan to separate out graduate studies: bring and keep highly qualified faculty (many of whom would not have come to UW-L); grad scholarship on campus enhances the institution; graduate scholarship strengthens undergraduate teaching and research; serves a unique niche in undergraduate education; graduate students secure faculty procurement of grants and outside funding; significantly different students; and finally, many graduate faculty have national and international reputations.

Senator Hollenback reported on recent conversations within the history department.  Out of the conversations several concerns and suggestions surfaced.

  1. The Strategic Plan needs to be more strongly focused on academics.  For example, many times the document discusses such academic issues as “globalization”, “Diversity,” and “workload issues” in the context of holistic student development or building a sense of community rather than in the context of academics.
  2. Where is an explicit statement of our educational mission?  Our department should require that the Strategic Plan document clarify our mission as a “regional public comprehensive university.”  Specifically, we need to ask: is undergraduate education our first priority? We also need a better definition of the expectations of a teacher/scholar in a regional public comprehensive university.
  3. We need an explicit statement of what a liberally educated person should look like when they graduate from our institution.  (see the following Goals of a Liberal Education).
  4. Another flaw in the document can be found on p. 5 where it states that we must “Develop methods to ensure that allocations are linked to the Strategic Plan and are regularly assessed.”  WHO is charged with developing these methods?  HOW is this to be done?  To what extent will this involve faculty input?
  5. The heavy faculty workload also needs to be addressed not only as a work-life issue but also as an academic issue.
  6. The document needs to place more emphasis on content knowledge and the contributions that the traditional disciplines make to the curriculum.

 The Goals of a Liberal Education

The University of Wisconsin – La Crosse is committed to developing an intellectually exciting, rigorous, and coherent program of liberal education that creates students

  • who possess a keen awareness of and appreciation of the splendors of nature and the wondrous achievements of the human intelligence and imagination.
  • who possess a respectful awareness of both human cultural diversity and interdependence together with an understanding how those human cultures developed their distinctive characteristics.
  • who think critically and logically and communicate clearly and persuasively both in writing and in speech.
  • who possess a keen historical and developmental awareness, i.e., they have a deep understanding of how dynamic and complex systems such as human cultures, economies, biological organisms, and ecosystems sustain themselves, change through time, and respond to transformations in the contexts or environments that nourish them.
  • who possess the wisdom to use scientific knowledge, technology, and a respectful awareness of cultural diversity to create a just and humane social order in harmony with both our natural surroundings and the diverse human and biotic communities with whom we share this planet.
  • who understand that the highest keenness and vigor of mind and spirit is inseparable from developing a healthy lifestyle and a healthy body and who possess the knowledge and motivation to develop that healthy body and healthy lifestyle.
  • who, by their example, will lead others in creating a vibrant and meaningful sense of community wherever they live.
  • who are imbued with a passion for life-long learning.

Senator Hollenback went on to ask how we emphasize the primary mission.  There needs to be balance.  Liberal education should be primary goal – having a person who is liberally educated as well as scientific literacy, and mathematical literacy.

Chair Senger opened up discussion on the Building Blocks section of the document by asking:  Does this page provide a coherent statement?  Does the opening paragraph?  Do these six areas provide balanced view?  Do the bullets convey a clear coherent message?

Some remarks followed:

  • Map is part of the problem – other areas dwarf academics.  Say something like “contributing to academics”.
  • Cross disciplinary is implied under rigorous General Education program.
  • What does rigorous mean?
  • Global issues should be under academics, especially study abroad and international experiences.
  • Good deal of discussion about the world becoming globalized, diverse and integrated.
  • Internships not mentioned anywhere.  Improve internship possibilities – i.e. two months on a struggling dairy farm, or two months in the inner city.
  • If we write the word down what does it mean?

Chair Senger suggested that the Senate could make some specific recommendations to try to pull together the discussions.

M/S/P to replace the building block section with a section that describes the broad academic goals (show of hands: 16 yes, 1 no, 2 abstain)

All-University Council.  As previously indicated, the SEC wanted the full senate to discuss the request for nominations to serve on the All-University Council.  Chancellor Hastad has asked the SEC to provide four names of faculty - he would select two who do not serve in a governance/leadership capacity.

  • The creation of additional layers of organization is especially bothersome.
  • Concern that this body will take on a life of its own.
  • Where did this idea come from?  It surfaced at the Future Search Conference last January, however the Council is outside of the Strategic Plan.
  • It is clear that there are legitimate concerns coming from the faculty over this issue.  In particular, the process of nominating four individuals, who are not presently serving in a governance/leadership capacity, and from whom the Chancellor will choose two, is troubling.  If faculty input is needed, faculty can be invited to the Chancellor’s office for discussions.

M/S/P to not submit 4 names to chancellor for the All-University Council  (show of hands: 15-yes, 2-no, 2-abstain)

VI.  Adjournment.
The meeting adjourned at 5:20 p.m.

Submitted by
Robert Hoar, Secretary