Summary of Minutes – Faculty Senate Meeting – September 9, 2003



Chair of Faculty Report - Chair Smith described the importance of faculty participation in the SACS accreditation process for UAB. The Senate has been requested to submit the names of five faculty members from each academic unit who are willing and able to serve on committees for the accreditation process. Chair requested that names be submitted as quickly as possible to meet the September 12 due date. Chair Smith requested senators to identify volunteers for service on the Athletics Advisory Committee and names should be forwarded to the Chair. Chair Smith announced that Senator Ed Cook is the Senate representative to the Council for Academic Advising Steering Committee. Chair Smith requested that new senators and alternates introduce themselves to the Senate’s membership.


President Garrison – Update – President Garrison encouraged all senators to vote in the September 9 referendum process and addressed the importance to UAB of the vote for change in Alabama. Enrollment for fall term is increased 5% overall and 12% for freshmen. President Garrison indicated that 31% of students for fall term are conditional admits and described how this will require focus on retention activities by UAB. An update on the UAB Campaign indicated that >$360 million has been donated with 4 months remaining for the campaign. Donations by faculty and staff have surpassed defined goals. President Garrison reported that work with the scorecard development and implementation is moving forward at the academic unit level. Search committees have been formed for the position of Vice-President for Health Affairs, Executive Director of the UAB Health System and the Honors Program Director. The search processing is in the completion stages for the Dean of School of Dentistry. President Garrison reviewed the report presented to the Board of Trustees concerning the value and costs of the football program at UAB. The emphasis of the presentation (will be posted on the Senate web page) was on the value adding impact of the football program for students and the University. President Garrison responded to questions from senators related to her presentation and other topics.


Senate Standing Committee Report – Finance Committee

Senator Jackie Moss presented a written report for Senator Linda Reed summarizing the August 14, 2003 meeting of the Fringe Benefits Committee. President Garrison will be announcing decisions about the health benefits plans very soon.


Senate Standing Committee Report – Faculty Policies and Procedures Committee Chair of the FPPC, Mike Wyss presented a revised draft of the FPPC recommendation to the Senate for the Policy Review Guidelines for Faculty-related UAB-wide Policies. The Senate approved the proposed revision and the Senate’s recommendation will be forwarded to the Provost and the President. Mike Wyss presented a second recommendation from the FPPC concerning a recommendation to UAB Administration for the implementation of a prominent “Faculty Resources” hotlink on the UAB Homepage. This will allow faculty members to resources such as the UAB Faculty Handbook, all UAB policies that are related to faculty, staff or students, the UAB Faculty Senate Homepage and other information related to the need of the UAB faculty. A motion was presented and approved and this recommendation will be forwarded to the Provost and the President. Mr. James Lowery, Director of Management Support Services reviewed a flowchart describing “Development of UAB-wide Policies” and the role of the Senate in the review processes.


Standing Committee Membership and Responsibilities – Secretary of the Senate Greenup reviewed the assignments of all senators and alternate senators to one of the four standing committees (Curriculum & Research, Faculty Affairs, Governance & Operations and Finance) and encouraged all senators to review the functions of each committee as defined in the Senate Bylaws. Chair Smith reported that the Senate is working with Provost Capilouto to identify the current status of the University-wide committees listing for the standing committees and the future interactions between the Senate and University-wide committees.


Academic Unit Reports – Reports were presented from four Academic Units.

Senator Jennifer Long, Mervyn H. Sterne Library summarized concerns about three issues: (1) space for volumes and need to identify possible solutions; (2) expansion of service hours and the need for staff to support any expanded hours and new services that are currently needed; (3) collection expenditures and that currently 30% of materials budget is linked to ‘one-time’ funding for the library and the need to reduce reliance on this type of funding.

Senator Jackie Moss, School of Nursing identified faculty concerns related to lack of space for classrooms and need to address need for increased focus on faculty recruitment and retention to continue the competitive positioning for student recruitment and research activities.

Senator Stephen Moser, School of Medicine summarized concerns of faculty who responded to his request for assistance to prepare the Unit’s report to the Senate. Issues identified include: (1) need to increase UAB employee utilization of the University Hospital and Kirklin Clinic as a revenue resource and to assure access to services and privacy for UAB employees; (2) source of compensation for faculty service on NIH study sections or editorial boards and to consider an approach for credit to participating departments for “approved” service activities such as is currently done for teaching contact hours; (3) current governance structure for the UAB-Health Services Foundation,  the impact of the current structure on UAB faculty who perform clinical work and the need for accountability of the HSF executive committee to UAB policies and procedures applicable to faculty and University-wide; (4) parking and sticker process for clinical faculty; (5) identification of a location for faculty to assemble and discuss medical and university issues; (6) current process for the selection of Chiefs of Staff and a need for increased evaluation and accountability by and to the clinical faculty.

Senators Timothy Kraft and Adam Gordon, School of Optometry outlined these major concerns: (1) high rate of senior faculty retirement within 5-7 years and the need to recruit new faculty using proactive strategies such as pre-recruiting to build junior faculty; (2) faculty recruitment and retention that provides competitive salaries, mentoring and career development for junior faculty; (3) need for clinical and basic science faculty to generate a center of excellence in particular areas of research; (4) need for a University-wide coordination or recruitment efforts to maintain and expand the highly qualified and divers applicant pool to professional and graduate programs with possible activities to include linking to “growing our own” from the undergraduate programs and to expand the UAB Honors Program; (5) need expansion of opportunities for clinical faculty to participate in funded research projects within the school and in collaboration with other academic units on campus.


Announcements – Chair Smith announced the date of the next Senate meeting, October 14 and indicated that Dr. Sadis Matalon, Acting Vice-President for Research will present an update on research activities. Senators were encouraged to submit research related questions to Chair Smith in preparation for Dr. Matalon. The academic units scheduled for presenting issues and topics of concern at the October meeting are Public Health, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Joint Health Sciences, and Arts & Humanities.


Summary submitted by Pat Greenup, Secretary of Faculty for September 9, 2003 meeting. For a more complete record of the minutes see the Senate web page: