UNL ACADEMIC SENATE MEETING MINUTES
Clifford Hardin Nebraska Center, East Campus
September 10, 1996
President Peter Bleed Presiding
1.0 Call to Order* President Bleed called the meeting to order at 2:34 pm.
2.0 Welcome and Announcements2.1 Observations on the Start of a New Year. President Bleed commented on the success of the dedication of the "Torn Notebook" sculpture September 6 and the well-attended New Student Convocations. Bleed also cited two major issues for UNL this year: 1) North Central Association Accreditation process--this draft document is nearing completion and should be available for review by faculty in November; and 2) plans for the School of Natural Resources recommended by IANR.
2.2 Goals and Projects for 1996-97. Three major goals of the Academic Senate for this year will be: 1) Academic Excellence and recognizing centers of excellence, 2) post-tenure review and 3) faculty compensation. Bleed explained that the midpoint for retirement contributions is about 11% for our peer group and currently the University is at 7.5% with an 8% cap on contributions set by the Nebraska legislature.
2.3 Retaining a Senate Lobbyist. Bleed has been in contact with a potential lobbyist, Jack Moors, for possible retention by the Academic Senate. The objective is to begin a funding drive among UNL faculty to solicit donations toward retaining a lobbyist regarding changing or amending the legislative cap on retirement contributions and other benefits issues. Bleed advised members to look forward to receiving a letter requesting funds for the Friends of the Faculty Senate account for this purpose.
3.0 Chancellor Moeser3.1 Chancellor Moeser thanked James McShane and faculty of the Foundations Program, Lisa Schmidt, Admissions, and James Griesen, Student Affairs, for their efforts with the Freshman Reading Program.
3.2 Chancellor Moeser was pleased with the attendance and success of the New Student Convocation and the Torn Notebook sculpture dedication.
3.3 The University has now broken ground in northwest Lincoln for the new technology transfer park.
3.4 Chancellor Moeser agrees with the goals of the Academic Senate presented by President Bleed. Chancellor Moeser stated the two tests of academic rigor and excellence are the success of our graduates to pursue degrees at the graduate and professional levels, and also their success in obtaining employment in the corporate and business world. Chancellor Moeser stated he has met with both President Bleed and John Wunder, Chair of the Academic Planning Committee, regarding identifying funds and plans for points of emphasis within UNL. He strongly believes that periodic review of tenured faculty is an important objective in avoiding some of the problems other campuses nationwide are experiencing with assault on the tenure system. Moeser feels we can accomplish our goals within the existing bylaws of the university.
3.5 Search updates: The Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs search committee is currently reviewing applications. The committee is using an outside consulting firm to supply additional names of applicants but it does not have a decision-making function. The College of Business Administration Dean search will trail the Senior Vice Chancellor search. The university is close to selecting a Lied Center director. Two candidates recently visited the campus. UNL has several new deans: Richard Durst, College of Fine and Performing Arts, Don Swoboda, Division of Continuing Studies, and Rod Bates, Nebraska ETV. Additionally, Ricardo Garcia is the new Director of Affirmative Action and Diversity.
4.0 Committee Reports4.1 Commencement. Robert Diffendal, Conservation and Survey Division, chairs the Commencement Committee. Because the report covers last year's activities, it was drafted by past chair, James McShane, English. Diffendal invited all faculty who have not attended a commencement exercise to do so. Miles Bryant, Educational Administration, questioned whether seating for faculty could be altered so that faculty face the students rather than have their backs to them. President Bleed said he would write to the Commencement Committee to pursue this request. Diffendal thanked Don Jensen, Psychology and Associate to the Chancellor Herb Howe for all their work toward making the commencement exercise a rewarding event.
4.2 Executive. Secretary Albrecht reported on the activities of the Senate Executive Committee over the summer months. If senators or other faculty wish to contact the Executive Committee by email message, use "asexec" to write the whole email address. This will forward your email correspondence to the 13-member committee.