University of Minnesota, Morris

Campus Assembly Minutes

 

April 29, 2008

 

 

The Campus Assembly met on Tuesday, April 29 at 4:30 p.m. in the Science Auditorium.

 

I.          Chancellor’s Remarks.

 

Chancellor Johnson said this has been a year of tough choices with regard to spending and staffing.  Some people are leaving UMM because they have found other jobs; some have left because of organizational decisions; some because they are retiring.  She extends her appreciation to all.   Regarding budget issues, she noted that we have an agreement with the budget office in the Twin Cities and that we are hoping for the best regarding the state’s budget.

She has picked some of the accomplishments related to the Strategic Plan to talk about today.

 

Teaching/outreach:  she applauds faculty and campus assembly for their work, including approval of the Environmental Studies major program and notes that the Environmental Science major is standing in the wings.  There are also a number of outreach initiatives and support that we are taking advantage of.  One example is the College in the Schools Program in partnership with Morris Area High School, ready for piloting in fall of 2008.  In addition, we are in preliminary discussions with the MNSCU system/Minnesota West Community Colleges regarding a cooperative certificate program related to our renewable energy infrastructure.

 

Faculty/staff:  with a modest extra increment from the Provost’s office last year, faculty salary increases were approximately 4.7% during the 2007-2008 academic year compared to 2006-2007, with the greatest impact felt at the level of full professor.  Nevertheless, more work remains regarding improved salaries for faculty and staff members.

 

Students:  we are preparing to implement several of the recommendations of the FYS disappearing task force—this is tied to our desire to improve the student experience and to improve retention and graduation rates.  Our Academic Center for Enrichment Office is up and running.

 

Viability/sustainability:  the strategic plan called on us to review, revise and implement changes in our scholarship programs, and we have done so with the Prairie and Morris Scholarships.

 

Visibility:  we have achieved greater national recognition this year, much of it tied to our work in sustainability and renewable energy.  We completed our market research and the development of our brand platform.  We are entering Phase II of integrating marketing which involves, among other things, the design and implementation of the creative articulation of our brand platform.  Additionally, we have launched the Chancellor’s Advisory Council and are in early stages of work related to the University of Minnesota’s next Capital Campaign.

 

Capital Improvements: The Minnesota State Legislature approved funds for renovation of the Community Services Building into our new Gateway Center, we were awarded no interest Clean Renewable Energy Bonds by the Internal Revenue Service; and we received HEAPR funds from the University to improve buildings and infrastructure.

 

Enrollment:  we will continue to track numbers right up to the opening day of classes and to the 10-day period.  As of today, we have received the highest number of applications in the last ten years and we have made the highest number of offers while still maintaining our student profile.   It appears that the gap is closing.  Students are coming in later with their deposits.  We are not tracking as well with transfer students although applications are up.

 

II.        Minutes from 3/25/08 assembly meeting approved as presented with minor correction.

 

III.       Election to replace Michelle Page on the EC.

 

Tim Soderberg was elected to replace Michelle Page on the Executive Committee.

 

IV.       From the Curriculum Committee.     

 

Greg Thorson made a motion to move forward with the entire packet, pulling out individual courses that require discussion.  Second by Sarah Buchanan.  Motion to adopt procedure passes.

 

The following course changes/additions were approved as presented:

 

Education

Ed 1022 – Pronunciation of English

WSS 1205 – Lifeguard Training

 

Humanities

Engl 2061 – Detection and Espionage in Fiction and Film

Engl 2411 – Representations of American Indians in Popular Culture

Engl 3061 – The Novels of William Faulkner

Engl 3157 – English Renaissance Drama

Engl 3159 – Shakespeare Studies in the Bard

Engl 3165 – English Renaissance Poetry and Prose

Engl 3522 – Harlem Renaissance

Engl 4024 – Research Seminar:  Poet’s Choice:  The Book as the 25th Poem

Engl 4025 – Research Seminar:  The Elizabeth Mystique

Engl 4026 – Research Seminar:  Literature of the Shoah

Engl 4027 – Research Seminar:  Dickens and Criticism

Fren 1027 – Real to Reel:  The Middle Ages and Renaissance in Film for Non-Majors

Fren 2012 – French for Professions

Fren 3026 – Early Modern Studies:  History of the French Language

Fren 3027 – Early Modern Studies:  Reel to Reel:  The Middle Ages of Renaissance

Fren 4012 – Advanced Language Studies:  Advanced French Grammar

Spch 1062 – Introduction to Interpersonal and Group Communication

Spch 3071 – Principles and Practices of Speech Communication

Spch 3341 – Communication Technology and Society

Th 3305 – Stage Make-Up

 

Science and Mathematics

Biol 1111 – Fundamentals of Genetics, Evolution and Development

Biol 4221 – Genomics of Host-Pathogen Interactions

Chem 2321 – Introduction to Research

Chem 2322 – Introduction to Research

CSci 1101 – Dynamic Web Programming

CSci 4457 – Systems:  Ubiquitous Computing

Geol 3011 – Earth Resources

Math 4251 – Problem Solving in Pure Math

Math 4451 – Fundamentals of Numerical Analysis

Stat 3501 – Survey Sampling

 

Social Sciences

Mgmt 3512 – Group Dynamics

Psy 3512 – Group Dynamic

 

 

The following courses were pulled out for discussion because they received no votes from Curriculum Committee members:

 

Dance 1334 – Tap Dance

Engl 2022 – Sports Literature and Writing

Engl 2015 – Introduction to Film Studies

ArtH 3132 – Castles and Cathedrals

Engl 2421 – Understanding Moby-Dick

 

After a brief explanation, Pete Wyckoff moved to reintroduce the above courses and move on the entire packet.  Chancellor Johnson reminded Assembly members that a motion was on the floor to take action on all course except those listed above.    Motion to approve all other courses passes by voice vote.

 

The courses that were originally pulled were voted on and approved by voice vote.

 

V.        From the Curriculum Committee.  Program Changes. 

 

Request by Speech Communication Discipline to change the Discipline Name to Communication, Media, and Rhetoric (CMR) approved as presented.

 

LAHS Major Electives: remove Psy 1061-Introduction to the Development of the Child and Adult approved as presented.

 

VI.       From the Executive Committee.  Proposed 2008-09 Assembly and Adjunct Committee assignments approved as presented.

 

Motion to extend for 10 minutes.  So moved.

 

VII.     From the Scholastic Committee.  Academic Integrity Policy approved as presented.

 

VIII.    From the Campus Resources and Planning Committee.  UMM Mission Statement.

 

Pete Wyckoff said the committee would like to have comments and suggestions.  Paula O’Loughlin made a motion to table until next fall.   Motion carries.

 

IX.       Campus Committee Reports.  Report from the Executive Committee.  Overview of the proposed new constitution and by-laws.  Report attached.

 

X.         All University Reports.

 

None.

 

XI.       Old Business.

 

None.

 

XII.      New Business.

 

None.

 

 

Adjourned at 6:15 pm.

 


Report from the Executive Committee

Overview of the proposed new constitution and by-laws

 

       In February 2006, Chancellor Sam Schuman created a task force to revise the UMM Constitution.   This eleven-member group took input from the campus community, including at open forums on November 16 and 29, 2006.   The group presented a draft of a new constitution and by-laws to Campus Assembly on May 11, 2007.   The accompanying memo to the Executive Committee described this 2007 draft as one that “reflects and affirms UMM’s long tradition of shared governance.”  The various revisions “retain shared governance, clarify lines of administrative authority, strengthen the committee structure and update the language.”

 

       The Executive Committee took up the matter in Fall 2007, and created a six-member revision group to move the document forward towards a final version to be submitted to Campus Assembly for possible ratification.  The Executive Committee and its revision group also took input from the campus community, including at open forums on October 15, 16, and 17, 2007.  All points made at the forums, and others made in e-mails, were carefully considered in many meetings throughout the year.  Many of the points made at the forum are reflected in changes to the document.   The revision group consulted with the Executive Committee throughout the process.

 

     The proposed new constitution is being presented today as a report from the Executive Committee.  The proposal itself is at www.morris.umn.edu/committees/constitution2008/ .   It is anticipated that a final version will be presented officially for information and discussion at a Campus Assembly early next fall.   The vote on ratification would then begin at a Campus Assembly later in the fall.     If it is ratified then, the new constitution would govern elections in Spring 2009 and then come into full effect in Fall 2009. 

 

      The current constitution requires a two-thirds majority of all Campus Assembly members for amendment.  Although the new constitution would completely replace the current constitution,  it would formally be an amendment to the current constitution.  It would therefore need a two-thirds majority of all Campus Assembly members to pass.  To give all Campus Assembly members an opportunity to vote, it is anticipated that the voting period would remain open for two weeks.  The new by-laws would be bundled with the new constitution in a single motion. 

 

       The current constitution and by-laws are at http://www.morris.umn.edu/committees/ .  The

proposed constitution described here is similar to the current constitution and its by-laws in many ways.  The rest of this overview summarizes some of the principal differences. 

 

Changes in the draft constitution

 

Centrality of Campus Assembly.   The proposed constitution recognizes the Campus Assembly as the “central institution of UMM’s shared governance system.”  It quotes all-University documents that give authority to Campus Assembly.  These excerpts faithfully capture the sense of the system-wide documents.    The list of areas in the Campus Assembly’s purview is longer than in the current constitution, and includes “institutional mission,”  “organizational structure,” “allocation of resources,” and “budget.”

 

The Chancellor and other administrators.   Reprising language from the current constitution, the proposed constitution says that the Chancellor has “general administrative authority over campus affairs” and “the Chancellor will delegate various authorities to other administrators.”

 

The current constitution is minimally prescriptive of administrative structure, as it refers specifically only to the Chancellor.  The Chancellor, in “consultation with the campus community” is responsible for the organization of administration.   The proposed constitution gives the consultative aspect greater force by adding,  “In the appointment of these administrators, the Chancellor shall use a formal search process that is visibly inclusive and open.”

 

The proposed constitution also refers to the Vice-Chancellor of Academic Affairs and Dean and delineates her or his duties.  These duties include, after appropriate consultation, the appointment of Division Chairs.   The proposed constitution also says explicitly that the VCAA and Dean “ranks next to the Chancellor in campus leadership and acts on the Chancellor’s behalf in the Chancellor’s absence.”   

 

Review of administrators and division chairs.  The current constitution says, “The term of office for the chancellor and vice chancellors is seven years.  Near the end of their terms, or earlier if deemed appropriate, the president will initiate a review of the chancellor, and the chancellor will initiate a review of the vice chancellors.”

 

The proposed constitution says that administrators will be reviewed “regularly in accordance with University policy” in a way which maximizes campus input.  University policy presently includes a mandated comprehensive review of the Chancellor every three years.  The 2007 draft circulated last year had detailed procedures for conducting reviews of administrators, but these were found to be in contradiction with University policies and removed. 

 

University policies do however allow our campus to write specific procedures into our constitution with regard to division chairs.  The proposed constitution calls for greater campus input and requires reviews “early in the third year ” rather than “near the end” or “earlier if deemed appropriate” of a five-year term.  

 

Division of FACPA into faculty and P&A staff.   The current constitution and by-laws treat faculty and P&A staff as a single group.   Historically, on committees sometimes one or the other group has been underrepresented.  The draft constitution separates faculty and P&A to avoid this problem. 

 

Campus Assembly membership.  Rules regarding Campus Assembly membership are changed somewhat.  The four classes of members are faculty, P&A staff, USA staff, and students.  Student representation was increased from 100-to-1 to 90-to-1.    USA representation was doubled, from 50-to-1 to 25-to-1.   (Currently there are 134 faculty, 67 P&A, 4 elected USA staff, and 16 elected students; under the proposed constitution the latter numbers would increase to 8 and 18, respectively.)

 

A “removal for neglect” structure was instituted to help make Campus Assembly function better.   Members who miss two consecutive assemblies are removed from the membership list.  Faculty and P&A staff represent only themselves, and if they apply for reinstatement they will be returned to membership   USA staff and students represent others, and removed members are immediately replaced by alternates in order to avoid underrepresentation of these groups   The Chancellor remains the chair of Campus Assembly. 

 

Committees.  The current constitution refers to two elected committees, the Executive Committee and the Consultative Committee.   The proposed constitution keeps the Consultative Committee and splits the Executive Committee into two elected committees, the Steering Committee and the Membership Committee. Among other duties, the Steering Committee sets the agenda for Campus Assembly while the Membership Committee appoints people to the various standing and ad hoc committees established by Campus Assembly.   

 

The Chancellor is the chair of the current Executive Committee.   The new Steering Committee would have an elected chair and vice-chair, and the Chancellor would continue as a member.   The new Membership Committee would elect its own chair and the Chancellor would not be a member. 

 

The new structure is intended to increase the role of faculty, P&A staff, USA staff, and students in campus governance.  One other aspect of the new structure is that all committee chairs would meet at least once a semester to improve communication. 

 

Openness and executive session.    The campus has a long tradition of openness in governance and the proposed constitution maintains this tradition.  The current constitution does have a provision for Campus Assembly to go into executive session.   The proposed constitution says that the reasons for going into executive session must be in compliance with relevant statutes, and these statutes are highly restrictive.  Unlike the current constitution, the new constitution also allows committees to go into executive session for legally allowed reasons.   

 

Outmoded language.  The current constitution has some outmoded language.  The proposed constitution makes various updates.  One example is that Article VI of the current constitution refers to a Campus Grievance Committee.  The article is still theoretically in force, even though this committee has in fact not existed for several years.  The proposed constitution makes no reference to this non-existent committee.

 

Amendment process.  The proposed constitution makes the process of amending the constitution easier.  Amendments to the constitution will need a two-thirds majority of those Campus Assembly members who choose to vote, rather than two-thirds of the entire assembly membership.   To ensure proper deliberation, proposed amendments to the constitution must still be presented for information first and then distributed to all Campus Assembly members two weeks before the vote.   Similarly, the process for enacting or amending by-laws is made easier, with checks to ensure proper deliberation maintained. 

 

Changes in the proposed by-laws

 

Revision of committee structure.   The proposed constitution revises the committee structure in a number of ways.  There are some adjustments in the composition of each committee, many driven by the fact that faculty and P&A staff are considered separately.  However, the overall balance of representation is not changed, including the balance between faculty and P&A staff. The Spring 2007 draft had committees larger than they are currently; in response to strong consensus, committees in the proposed constitution are now approximately the same size as current committees.

 

Planning and Finance Committees.  The current Campus Resource and Planning Committee (“CRPC”) will be split into a Planning Committee and a Finance Committee.  The Planning Committee will have more of a long-term focus.  The Finance Committee will focus on current budgets.   The new structure is intended to increase campus involvement in both long-range planning and annual budgets.

 

Restructuring of reporting.   The current constitution and by-laws have committees reporting to other committees. This hierarchy has proved to be dysfunctional in some instances and is not followed in other instances. The proposed constitution simplifies the governance structure by having all committees directly responsible to Campus Assembly via the Steering Committee. 

 

Terminology.  The proposed constitution changes terminology in referring to committees to accord with the new structure.   Constitutional Committees (Steering, Membership, and Consultative) have special election procedures.   The remaining committees are called standing committees if they have no termination date and ad hoc committees if they do. 

 

Longer terms. Currently terms of standing committees are for two years with one possible reappointment.   To increase continuity and effectiveness, the proposed constitution makes terms of standing committees for three years with one possible reappointment. 

 

Removal of Teacher Education Committee.  The proposed constitution eliminates the Teacher Education committee from the governance system.  The Education Division has already instituted a substitute structure that improves campus input into the Teacher Education program. 

 

Election procedures.   Our current election procedures include nominations from the Campus Assembly floor and run-off by repeated voting.  These election procedures are not in the current constitution or by-laws. 

 

The proposed by-laws modify our current election procedures by having the Membership Committee oversee a nomination process in advance of the Campus Assembly election. 

 

Rules of Campus Assembly.  Some of the other rules that the assembly has been following (e.g. 90 minute limit) have also never been written down.  The draft puts them in the by-laws.