EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MINUTES
Present: Alexander, Beck, Buck, Fech, Fuller, Logan-Peters, Peterson, Spann, Wolf
Absent: Miller, Shea, Whitt, Wunder
Date: Wednesday, June 4, 2003
1.0 Call to Order
Peterson called the meeting to order at 2:34 pm.
2.1 Meeting with Lincoln Journal Star Editorial Staff
Peterson reported that he and President Wunder will be meeting with the editorial staff of the Lincoln Journal Star on June 25th.
2.2 Announcement of Budget Cuts and APC Recommendations
Peterson reminded the committee that Chancellor Perlman will announce further budget cuts and his response to APCs recommendations on June 17th. He stated that the Executive Committee will be invited to attend the announcements.
3.0 Marlene Beyke, Director of Development for ASUN and Kyle Arganbright, President, ASUN
3.1 Faculty Advisers to Student Organizations
Beyke and Arganbright stated that they wanted to get advice on the best ways to communicate to faculty advisers of student organizations. She stated that she has tried email but that does not seem to be working. Beyke pointed out that there are 360 student organizations on campus. She stated that Operations and Analysis indicated in a recent report that ASUN and the Office of Student Involvement need to improve their communication with faculty advisers. She pointed out that there have been some recent problems with student organizations and faculty advisers signing contracts that were not approved by the University. She stated that these contracts can be for thousands of dollars and that faculty advisers who sign them can be held accountable for the costs associated with them.
Wolf stated that faculty members are already overworked and should not be expected to be responsible for overseeing the writing of contracts for student organizations. He pointed out that this should be the responsibility of Student Involvement. Beyke stated that Student Involvement does try to be involved as much as possible but there are some faculty advisers who are bypassing the system. Fuller noted that some faculty advisers may not understand what is expected of them. Beyke noted that the NU Book has a section on the responsibilities of faculty advisers to student organizations (Appendix A: Advisers Handbook: Expectations of Recognized Student Organization Advisers at UNL). She stated that this information can also be found on the web at (http://www.unl.edu/involved/city_campus/pdfs/nu_book.pdf go to page 60).
Peterson pointed out that students in these organizations also need to take some responsibility for these business matters. He stated that it would be helpful if a packet of information were provided to faculty members when they first sign up as advisers. He asked where student organizations get their funding. Beyke stated that funds can be raised through membership fees, fund raising events, or donations.
Beyke reported that each organization must fill out an annual review form indicating the names of new officers. She noted that this form needs to be signed by the faculty adviser and she suggested the form could be changed to accommodate more information for the advisers. She pointed out that she does not want to make the form too cumbersome.
Logan-Peters asked if it would be too cumbersome for the Student Involvement office to contact new faculty advisers to brief them on their responsibilities. Beyke stated that there are usually only five new advisers each year and that it would not be a problem to contact them. She stated that she is concerned with being able to contact the other 355 advisers. Logan-Peters pointed out that people need to understand that being a faculty adviser to a student organization does require some involvement with the organization.
Beck asked if there was a standard contract form that student organizations could use. Beyke and Arganbright stated that there is, but contracts are created in some cases. They noted that the business providing a service may create the contract. They pointed out that sometimes the contract is not signed by the faculty adviser. Buck stated that the contract should not be considered valid if it does not have the proper signatures. Beyke stated that the problem is that the business signs the contract with a person from the student organization, not with Student Involvement. She stated that the business is unaware that further signatures are required by the university.
Fech suggested that Beyke might want to contact the department chairs to see if they can assist with notifying and informing the faculty advisers. Spann pointed out that if faculty members are willing to sign on as advisers, they should be willing to come over to meet with the staff for a briefing on their responsibilities. He noted that department heads should be notified of the service the faculty member is providing to the student organization. Fuller suggested that a letter or certificate recognizing the contributions of the faculty member should be given at the end of the year. Beyke pointed out that a letter is already sent. She stated that she wants to encourage and recognize the service these faculty members are providing. Spann suggested that a copy of the letter should be sent to department heads to let them know of the faculty members contribution of service. Fuller suggested that an annual letter could be sent to the Dean of each college listing those faculty members who have served as an adviser. Beck suggested that the Deans should be informed of the liability issue for faculty members signing contracts. She pointed out that the Deans will inform their faculty members of this issue.
Beyke stated the event registration form will be going on-line. She stated that when the event registration form is filled out, it will automatically send an email message to the faculty adviser informing him or her of the event.
Logan-Peters asked if there are a lot of problems with the organizations not getting the proper signatures. Beyke stated that 80 annual review forms were not submitted this year. Logan-Peters asked how the student organizations know that these reviews must be completed. Beyke stated that the President of the organization is sent an email message notifying him or her of the annual review form. She noted that new officers are also given a brief orientation when they take office. Spann suggested that the email message should also be sent to the faculty adviser. Peterson suggested that the message state that the organization must respond to the annual review.
3.2 Future Meetings with ASUN
Arganbright stated that the ASUN wants to keep a comfortable working relationship with the Executive Committee and that he hopes to meet with the Committee during the year. He stated that there are many issues that the ASUN would like to work on with the Senate and Executive Committee. Peterson noted that one of the issues concerns dead week. He suggested that the ASUN form a subcommittee to look into dead week problems and see if there is a consensus among students about policy changes that should be made.
Arganbright stated that another concern for the ASUN is the loss of the student ombudsperson. He noted that there are problems associated with this loss that need to be resolved.
Wolf stated that the Executive Committee should meet on a regular basis with ASUN and that each group should keep the other informed of upcoming issues. Arganbright agreed. He stated that there is now an ASUN Academic Committee that will be looking at academic issues for students.
Arganbright stated that he will be a member of a new committee that is being formed to review introductory classes. He stated that faculty members as well as students will be on the committee. He noted that SVCAA Edwards is forming the committee. The Executive Committee agreed to place this on the agenda when they meet with SVCAA Edwards on June 18th.
4.0 Approval of 5/28/03 Minutes
Spann moved and Peterson seconded approval of the minutes as amended. Motion approved.
5.0 Unfinished Business
5.1 Update on Intercollegiate Athletics Coalition
Wolf noted that the latest email message from the coalition requests action from the universities. He suggested that the UNL Intercollegiate Athletics Committee should review the request and make a proposal to the Senate. Logan-Peters suggested that a subcommittee could be formed within the IAC to review and keep appraised of the Coalitions actions. Spann suggested that the IAC could make a proposal to the Senate at the October meeting. The committee agreed that this should be done.
Beck asked if anyone knew if the consultant who is used to interview athletes concerning gender issues has been retained or if the Athletic Department has gotten a new consultant. Fuller stated that the chair of the IAC should be asked if this has been done. The Executive Committee agreed to have Professor Phillip Miller, current chair, and Roch Gaussion, new chair of the IAC, meet with them to discuss the coalition and the consultant issues.
6.0 New Business
6.1 Executive Memorandum #24
Spann stated that he believes that Executive Memorandum #24 defining an academic program is a cause for concern because it is so broad that it can be interpreted to cover just about anything or anyone. He stated that he believed many faculty members would be surprised by the expansive definition outlined in the memo. Wolf asked if a committee should review the memo. The Committee agreed to have several faculty members on campus review the memo and give their opinion on it.
The committee went into a closed session to discuss budget cuts and their impact on teaching loads, accreditation, lack of time for research, and the long-term impacts of the cuts on the University.
The meeting was adjourned at 4:47 pm. The next meeting of the Executive Committee will be on Wednesday, June 18th at 2:30 pm. The meeting will be held in 201 Canfield Administration Building. The minutes are respectfully submitted by Karen Griffin, Coordinator and Shelley Fuller, Secretary.