University of Minnesota, Morris

Campus Assembly Minutes


October 14, 2009



I.  Chancellor’s Remarks.


Chancellor Johnson remarked that last week she had the annual opportunity to spend a few minutes updating the Regents at the meeting of the Educational Planning and Policies Committee on our strategic plan initiatives and progress.  The charge to coordinate campuses this time was to spend time on issues related to enrollment and graduation rates and retention.  We have good news to report:  enrollment is up 6% overall; 8% for new high school students; 30% for transfer students; residence hall occupancy is up by 8%. 


The big news from the Regents meeting is Financing the Future report which is worth reading.  The report includes five strategies aimed at strengthening the financial future of the University while supporting educational excellence.

  1. Grow a larger and more diversified portfolio of revenues.
  2. Grow tuition revenue while ensuring financial access for qualified students from families of modest financial means.
  3. Substantially increase administrative and academic effectiveness, reduce costs, and boost efficiency.
  4. Narrow the scope of the University’s mission to advance a distinctive constellation of excellence.
  5. Develop and execute long term financial plans, along with budget and planning processes that advance the vision and discipline the setting of priorities.


Each strategy is discussed in greater detail in the report, which is available at:


Finally, I think you saw my message from a few weeks ago, informing the community of the death of Jim Gremmels.  It’s easy to forget in the midst of the daily work that we do how important each and every one of is to the life and value of this campus community.  If nothing else, the death of someone of the stature of Jim Gremmels reminds us of that.  He was one of the original 13 members of the faculty; he was the first basketball coach at the University.


One of his former students, Dennis Clausen, now a faculty member in English Literature at San Diego State University, wrote a tribute to Jim and I want to end my remarks with this paragraph of his from that tribute:


“The passing of Jim Gremmels has left a huge void in the lives of the many students he befriended and mentored over the past fifty years.  Jim was a bigger-than-life character.  At times it seemed that he was born in the wrong century.  He should have been a contemporary of the early nineteenth century writers who helped develop an American literary tradition.  He should have built a cabin on the other side of Walden Pond, so Henry David Thoreau and he could have been neighbors, albeit at an acceptable distance for two such free, independent spirits.  Or perhaps he should have been Ralph Waldo Emerson’s walking partner, examining everything along the forest pathways that demonstrated how nature and its marvelous metaphors had shaped American values and the American character.”


Truthfully, no name rises higher above the UMM campus than the name of Professor Jim Gremmels.  To many of us, his name is synonymous with UMM.  He was a fighter and a believer in many things.  When he believed in something or someone, he never gave up.  He believed in UMM and he was determined to help it succeed.


Just as we all are.  We are working with Jim’s family to schedule a memorial service for him in the spring and I hope to have a date for that service to announce sometime soon.


It is tradition at the first meeting of campus assembly that we provide a brief statement regarding history and importance of campus governance at UMM, I invite Bert Ahern to do that now.  A history of Campus Assembly can be found at the following site:


II.  For Action.  Minutes from 5/5/09 were approved as presented. 


III.  For Action.  The Scholastic Committee membership was approved as presented.



Chris Cole (1st term 09-11) FPA

Jennifer Deane (2nd term 08-10) FPA                  

Jim Schryver (2nd term 09-11) FPA                     

Dan Magner (2nd term 08-10) FPA                      

Jenny Nellis (1st term 08-10) FPA                        

Jennifer Goodnough (1st term 09-11) FPA

Julie Pelletier (1st term 08-10) FPA                                        

Sara Haugen XO Commission on Women       

to be determined XO Admin                                                    

Clare Strand XO Registrar                                                      

Adele Raymond XO (1st term 08-10) USA                          

Kellcee Baker STU                                                                      

Attina Earl STU                                                         

Matt Privratsky STU                                                                 

Manjari Govada STU


An observation was made that there are duplicated people on some of the committees and this may not be in line with our by-laws and may not serve us well in terms of shared governance.   MCSA will address the issue.  The committee will address the role of the secretary.  Barry McQuarrie reported there were very productive discussions over the summer and the committee is beginning to identify those tasks that need to be done and will look at possible alternatives.


IV.  For Action.  2009-10 committee replacements were approved as presented.


Jeri Squier replaces Brenda Boever on Curriculum Committee

Becca Gercken becomes Chair of Faculty Development

Heather Peters replaces Seung-Ho Joo on Faculty Development

Michael Lackey replaces Mary Elizabeth Bezanson on Functions & Awards

Jim Barbour replaces Lori Kurpiers on Multi-Ethnic Experience


V.  For Information.  Process for UMM Constitution.


Chancellor Johnson reported that Michelle Page, Dave Roberts and Gwen Rudney will lead us in the discussion.  Michelle said that we will begin the discussion with an overview of the proposed constitution.  At the end of the discussion, the Executive Committee has a process for approving the constitution.  The purpose of the discussion is to refresh our memories of some of the highlights of the current constitution and the proposed new constitution.  The report in the agenda packet summarizes some of the changes. 


Gwen Rudney reported she has been on every one of the task forces assigned to work on the constitution which began its work in 2006.  In all of the work the task force did, they were always looking to make our constitution stronger, clearer and designed to build participation across the campus.  She suggests that everyone read the current and the proposed constitution.   Dave Roberts reported he was heavily involved in the second year of the revision process.  He does not think the question before us is whether the proposed new constitution is a perfect document because we all have our separate points of view.  In his opinion, he believes the proposed constitution is a better document than the existing constitution.  The proposed constitution is very respectful of the history of the institution.  If you look at the proposed and existing constitution and note all of the changes, he believes the proposed constitution will serve us better.


Jeff Ratliff-Crain noted that we’ve had changes in some of the offices since the proposed constitution was completed and wondered how those changes will be made.  Michelle said she hasn’t seen too many places where this applies; however, if we’ve missed something, we could look at editing or amending.  Pete Wyckoff noted the constitution does not mention the current divisions, how they are run or how one is created.   


Chancellor Johnson introduced a resolution regarding the method for the ratification of the Morris campus constitution.  


Mary Elizabeth Bezanson questioned the two-thirds majority of votes cast and believes it should say two-thirds of campus assembly members.   Motion was made and seconded to amend the text on number 7 with the removal of “of all votes cast” and add “Campus Assembly members.”   Approved.  Discussion continued about a paper ballot and the voting process.  Bert Ahern wanted to underscore the value of having a specific length of time and a process that allows the Executive Committee to follow up with individuals to remind them to vote.  Over the years, proposals have failed simply because people forgot to vote or were absent.  Assuming the constitution is ratified, Clare Strand wondered if the Twin Cities needs to see the document again.  Chancellor Johnson said it would go through the Education and Policy Planning Committee at the Regents meeting via the Provosts Office.  Paula O’Loughlin encouraged the Executive Committee to work in consultation with the Consultative Committee in terms of ratification and asked the Executive Committee to consider electronic ballots.  Michelle agreed that both the Executive Committee and Consultative Committee should be involved in all aspects, including the determination of balloting.  Motion was made and seconded to strike the “a” from number 6.  Ashley Gaschk supports the amendment that the Executive Committee will consult with the Consultative Committee and will bring a written proposal on how the ballot will be distributed.  Determination of how people on leave will have an opportunity to vote also needs to be addressed.  


Motion to approve following Resolution regarding the method for the ratification of the Morris Campus constitution as twice amended was approved and seconded.   







The Executive Committee of the Campus Assembly asks Campus Assembly approval for the following ratification process for the Morris Campus Constitution:

1.      The proposed Morris Campus Constitution will be introduced for information during the October 14, 2009 meeting of the Campus Assembly and will be subject to initial discussion and comment by the full Assembly.

2.      All proposed amendments to the proposed Morris Campus Constitution will be transmitted in written form to the Chancellor’s Office by November 9, 2009.

3.      Any amendment not transmitted to the Chancellor’s Office by November 9, 2009, will not be considered during the November 19, 2009 meeting of the Campus Assembly.

4.      The proposed Morris Campus Constitution will be subject to amendment and further debate during the November 19, 2009 meeting of the Campus Assembly.

5.      The proposed Morris Campus Constitution will be subject to final debate and the commencement of ratification procedures during the December 1, 2009 meeting of the Campus Assembly.

6.      The proposed Morris Campus Constitution will be voted upon with paper a ballot for two weeks, commencing on December 1, 2009, and ending at 4:30 p.m. on December 15, 2009.

7.      This constitution shall be considered ratified when a two-thirds majority of Campus Assembly members all votes cast in a written, signed ballot approves of its adoption as per Article XII of the proposed Morris Campus Constitution.*  Article XI of the current Constitution, with the proposed Constitution serving as an “amendment of the whole.”

(*Note:  the ratification procedures outlined in this resolution comply with the ratification procedures outlined in Article XII of the proposed Constitution as well as the amendment procedures outlined in Article XI of the current Constitution.   The Executive Committee suggests that the proposed Constitution as a whole be considered as an amendment to the existing Constitution, thus the 2/3’s majority and the two week voting period are honored in each case.)



Chancellor Johnson expressed thanks to MCSA President Adam Olson for the original shaping of the resolution.


VI.  Campus Committee Reports.


Self Study Report


Michael Korth said the Higher Learning Commission team will be on campus March 29-31, 2010.  The self-study steering committee is working on a draft of the self-study report for the visiting team.  The steering committee will be looking for feedback on the report from the campus community in the near future.


Assessment of Student Learning Committee Report


Michael O’Reilly reported that the 2008-09 assessment reports received from Disciplines are posted at:  The ASLC thanks the all-but-six Disciplines that have responded to its request made earlier this year.  The Committee is reviewing these reports, with particular attention to Gen Ed aspects.   The desire is to stimulate Disciplines to enhance their assessment activities by identifying measurable and measured objectives for each course.  The current emphasis should be on those GenEd courses offered outside the major.  Future work will include consideration of how to assess the overarching Student Learning Outcomes when the Curriculum Committee develops these outcomes.  The Committee regrets that, at present, minutes of its meetings are not being posted on its website as the committee lacks a secretary.


Student Services Committee


Nic McPhee reported the new student organization classifications are currently underway.  The committee is working with the dining services subcommittee regarding the major renovation in Food Service.  More renovations may happen in the next year or two including the possibility of opening a small store that would stay open later in the absence of Coborn’s.   There seems to be a problem with late student time sheets which actually hurts the student because they are taxed differently.  He emphasized the desire to get time sheets in on time. 


Campus Resources and Planning Committee


Pete Wyckoff reported CRPC is working to develop three strategic documents by the end of the semester at the request of Robert Jones:  1) a five year enrollment plan (including revisions to the enrollment targets put forth in the 2006 strategic plan), 2) a five year budget model, and 3) a five year academic staffing plan.  The committee will be looking for input as the process develops.


VIII.  All University Reports.


Paula O’Loughlin noted a correction on the list of Senate Committees.  Tracey Anderson is on the Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee.  


Michael O’Reilly said the Benefits Advisory Committee is concerned about the “Cadillac Plan” excise tax that is in the Senate Finance Committee legislation.  Based on initial calculations that only take into account the combined employer medical and dental premiums, the excise tax would pose a significant problem for the University.  The committee plans to draft a letter to representatives stating their position on the issue.


Jen Goodnough said the Student Academic Integrity Committee agreed that the Morris provision in the Grading and Transcript Policy should be revised to include the Twin Cities.  This recommendation should be forwarded to the Educational Policy Committee (SCEP) for approval.


Peh Ng said she appreciates all the responses she received about the two items that came up at the SCEP meeting:  1) Policy on Student Comments on the SRT Forms, and 2) High School Prep. Requirements for Undergraduates.


Nancy Carpenter reported that three members of the Faculty Consultative Committee will on campus Friday, October 16 and will meet with several faculty members.


Kathy Julik-Heine said the Student Consultative Committee will be addressing the process for making the survey questions that students complete at the end of the courses.  The committee may also address the rising cost of textbooks.


IX.  Old Business.




X.  New Business.


A concern was made about the smoking on campus, especially outside of the Student Center doorway.  The Regents policy states smoking must be 20 feet from the doorway.  Paula O’Loughlin said the concern has been brought to the Consultative Committee.   Sandy Olson-Loy has asked the Health Services Subcommittee to look at our tobacco policy and recommend changes.


Meeting adjourned at 6:05 p.m.