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Faculty Development Committee

Minutes for December 11, 2001
4 PM Faculty Center
Humanities Annex

Present:  Harold Hinds (Chair), Bert Ahern, Stacey Parker Aronson, and Mike Rea

Absent:  Gordon McIntosh, Doug Reese, and Cyrus Pansch

Hinds called the FDC meeting to order at 4:08 PM.  He noted that McIntosh had an excused absence due to the conflict with another scheduled meeting. Hinds said he had not heard any comments from committee members concerning the minutes dated 11/6/01 and 11/20/01, and asked for their approval. The minutes were unanimously approved and will be posted.

Hinds told the committee that he would like to schedule Tom Turner and Janet Ericksen to attend one of the next FDC meetings for further discussion of the seminars they are facilitating. Hinds will request Turner and Ericksen to have a detailed budget proposal and said that he would like this approved in this year. Ahern said that Turner was one of the core persons (along with Anne Farrell) to establish the seminars at UMM, noting that the first year was Mid-Career Seminar, Tenure Tracking this year, and next year will be the "Closure" the final six years. Ahern said that he would like the seminars to be included as part of the Faculty Center budget. It was agreed that the seminar expenses should be institutionalized. Hinds said that after the full budget proposal is reviewed that a formal adoption should be made this year.

Hinds said that each fall, the Faculty Retreat is focused on a topic of general interest, and asked for suggestions to explore various topics. Ahern had discussed with McIntosh his ideas for topics, which include:

  • Political Correctness - Is it an issue at UMM? The Committee appears somewhat divided on this
  • Athletics - This is an important issue at UMM, but hasn't received careful discussion
  • Budget/Governance
Ahern said that Athletics and Governance are important issues, but feels that it does not fit with the normal Faculty Retreat.

Aronson suggested a speaker to:

  • Talk about teaching, why we are doing what we are doing. She referred to the book Courage to Teach by Parker Palmer. She suggested Parker Palmer as a speaker.

Ahern suggestions included:

  • Advising (this could be more hands on )
  • Study Abroad - Ahern noted that UMM had received a 2-year grant aimed at strengthening student study abroad.
  • Civic Learning - Ahern noted that all University civic working groups are asking for forms on campus, but thought that this topic may be a year away.

Hinds said that these were seven very interesting topics for the Fall Retreat, but thought that some might be difficult to pursue.

Budget - This would be difficult to bring an external person in, it would need to be an insider, such as Gary Strei.

Advising - Hinds questioned if students are using Advisors, as they should. Ahern commented that many things have changed, and that students have easier access to Internet. for information. Ahern said that there is currently no system for evaluating advisers. Hinds noted that advising is taken into consideration by every Division in all tenure and promotion cases.

Study Abroad - Hinds said that he feels that the programs seems to be doing quite well, nice diversity and has large faculty and student involvement. He feels that this is not an area that needs any outside area to get it going. He also noted that this topic would not apply to all faculty. But given grant, a case could be made for this.

Hinds asked if there was a preference of the topics for the workshop. The committee agreed that the 3 most viable topics would be:
1) Political Correctness

  • there is a body of critical literature on this issue.  Would Richard Zellar be available?
  • discuss orthodox  way to explain issues on campus
  • how do you construct a constructive dialogue on campus (such as discussion about the Sep-tember 11 attack on America)
2) Teaching
  • Parker Palmer suggested speaker, author of The Courage to Teach
Hinds noted that the cost and schedule could be a factor in whether we can hire Parker Palmer for the Fall Retreat.

3) Advising
  • More practical and focus on issues.

Ahern will check into details about Parker Palmer as a possible speaker for the Fall Retreat.  Ahern also noted that it would be useful to talk with Karla Klinger about advising issues.  Hinds requested members to consider the topics over break, and discussion will continue at the next meeting.  No date was set.

Meeting adjourned at 5:05 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Linda Pederson