Summary of the February 10, 2009 Faculty Senate Meeting
Chair Warren Martin announced the following items:
1) He attended the University of Alabama System Board of Trustees meeting and gave a speech on the importance of diversity at UAB.
2) He discussed the creation of information technology policies with Sheila Sanders, the Vice President for Information Technology. She will be asking for volunteers from the Faculty Senate to provide feedback on policy decisions that are not dictated by law, federal policy, or emergency.
3) He suggested that a link to the Faculty Senate web site be placed on the UAB home page.
President Carol Garrison announced the following items:
1) Federal economic stimulus package is being tracked by the university. The allocation of funds will be handled by the state government so the impact on the university is not known at this time.
2) University of Alabama System Board of Trustees meeting was held at UAB and included institutional presentations by several faculty members.
3) Major recruiting event was held for scholarship students at the undergraduate level.
Center for Community Outreach Development
Dr. Michael Wyss, Director of the Center for Community Outreach Development, presented information about the Center for Community Outreach Development (CORD). Topics covered were CORD goals which include increasing the science literacy of area students and promoting the science education outreach of UAB and CORD programs and partnerships across the K-12 continuum which include AMSTI, Weekend Academy, Regional Science and Engineering Fair, LabWorks and GENEius at the McWane Center, Summer Science Camps, Summer Science Institute with Internships, ChemBridge, Chemistry Olympiad, Aladdin, and BioTeach. He announced that judges are needed for the Regional Science and Engineering Fair at UAB on March 7, 2009.
Online Consulting and Conflict of Interest Disclosure Process
Dr. Harlan Sands, Associate Provost for Administration and Finance, provided an overview and demonstration of the online disclosure process for consulting and conflict of interest. Topics covered were reasons for changing the disclosure process, new online disclosure process, automated workflow, modifications to questions and forms, important clarifications, reasons for disclosing consulting and conflict of interest, recent examples of violations, future trends, next steps, resources, and working group. The link for the online disclosure process is available on the Office of the Provost web site under important resources.
Higher Education Partnership
Mr. Gordon Stone, Executive Director of the Higher Education Partnership, discussed the budget situation in Alabama for public education, the myths about funding for higher education, the federal economic stimulus package, and the Higher Education Partnership which is the advocacy group for public universities in Alabama. Faculty members were encouraged to support the partnership by becoming members and by contacting their representatives and advocating equal funding for higher education. He announced that Higher Education Day is March 5, 2009 in Montgomery.
Curriculum and Research Committee Report
Chair of the Curriculum and Research Committee Kay Clements reported that the committee members submitted comments about the recommended revisions to the proposed faculty development grant program guidelines for 2008-2009. The revisions were related to the definition of multidisciplinary and the suggestion that priority be given to junior faculty. The comments from the committee members will be forwarded to Claire Peel, the Associate Provost for Faculty Development and Faculty Affairs.
Faculty Affairs Committee Report
Chair Warren Martin reported on behalf of the Chair of the Faculty Affairs Committee Stephen Moser on the recommendations from the ad hoc committee on administrator evaluations. There are two major issues that need to be addressed. The first issue is the frequency of the chair and dean evaluations as being annual or every three years. The second issue is the survey instrument as being IDEA Center or a different vendor due to concerns about the cost. Feedback about these issues may be submitted to Chair Warren Martin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Governance and Operations Committee Report
Chair of the Governance and Operations Committee Janelle Chiasera presented the recommended revisions from the Provost to the senate approved amendments to the constitution and bylaws which will be discussed and voted on at the March senate meeting. She reported that the committee is working with the Senate Secretary on better ways to organize the constitution, bylaws, and appendices on the web site to make it easier to locate and update the information.
Senate Representatives to University-wide Committees
Past-Chair Pat Greenup reported on the EPA peer audit which is related to several university-wide safety committees. In an effort to comply with regulations and avoid fines, UAB is participating in a cooperative program with the Environmental Protection Agency that allows universities in the southeast to inspect each other using trained auditors, self report any violations found, and submit a plan to correct the problems. The first peer review site inspection for the university is in spring 2009 and will include campus laboratories, maintenance areas and equipment, art departments, and other areas in which waste is generated, managed, or stored. Faculty will be questioned and asked to produce training records and other documentation. Occupational Health and Safety is distributing a toolkit of information to help affected departments prepare for the inspection and maintain ongoing compliance with EPA regulations.
Nominations for Senators and FPPC Representatives and Senate Chair-Elect and Secretary are due on February 20, 2009.
The next senate meeting is March 10, 2009 in the Administration Building Penthouse CR1, the next executive committee meeting is February 25, 2009, the next executive committee meeting with the President and Provost is March 3, 2009, and the next FPPC meeting is February 20, 2009.
UAB Faculty Senate – http://www.uab.edu/fsenate/home.html
Secretary Jennifer Long submits this draft summary of the minutes and a more complete record will appear on the senate page after approval at the March senate meeting.