Constitution Committee Meeting #12: November 13, 2006

3:30-4:30 p.m.—Humanities Lounge


Present: M.E. Bezanson (Chair), B. Ahern, G. Donovan, B. Jasper, M. Korth, T. McRoberts (Secretary), G. Rudney, S. Olson-Loy, K. Strissel, G. Thorson, R. Webb




Staff support—the chancellor has agreed to support a staff person to help the committee with its work in the amount of up to five hours a week for 20 weeks.


The first forum will be on Thursday November 16 at 3:00 p.m. in Science 2190. The second forum is set for November 29th at 4:00 p.m.


The chair then outlined the agenda items for this meeting: 1) Forum Preparation; 2) Forum Design; 3) Post Forum Activities; and, 4) Writing Groups.


The first item to be discussed was the pre-forum activities.


In preparation for the forum we will produce posters that will be distributed around campus (for students) and public service announcements on radio station KUMM—Strissel will handle the general publicity.


The Chair will contact the Chancellor about doing an announcement to the campus community about the forum. Korth will coordinate distributing the message to the Division Chairs and divisional faculty.


Refreshments—we hope to have simple refreshments for the forum (for up to about 20 people) including something simple like “trail mix” and cider.


We anticipate having copies of the questions for each individual (the six questions) that were developed at our previous meeting.



We will divide participants into groups of three to five with plans to have a discussion in each group of the questions and then reporting back to the group as a whole. There would be approximately 40 minutes to discuss in small groups and then 20 minutes to share with the broader groups.


There followed a discussion about how we should assign people to the small groups. We finally concluded that we should keep it simple and Gwen Rudney would coordinate assigning people to the tables. Perhaps she would use some sort of count off method.


Committee members should be in the group and perhaps serve as scribes or note takers but they should avoid being active participants in the discussions. We are thinking of having about 7 groups with each member of the committee being in a group with the exception of the chair who will be free to move about.


At the beginning of the session the Chair (Bezanson) will make some brief introductory remarks (prepared by Jasper). Bezanson will serve as the timekeeper to keep us on schedule.


As for note taking, we agreed that there should be little concern about attribution to specific people, but we should make every effort to be as careful as possible in taking notes verbatim.


In summary, the Forum is for Thursday, November 16 at 3:00 p.m. in Science 2190. There will be seven groups plus a committee member in each group and Bezanson will preside. Strissel will handle much of the on-campus publicity with Korth coordinating contact with the Divisions and Bezanson contacting the Chancellor to make an announcement to the campus community.

At the meeting itself, Rudney will be responsible for seating participants. She may use a count off method. We will set some very brief introductory comments and then address the questions as posed in the announcement to the campus community.


We should make every effort to record carefully the discussion that takes place, without attribution however. There should be about 40 minutes set aside for discussion and about 20 minutes for reporting back to the entire group.


Forum discussion


The Committee will convene on November 20th to discuss the forum and to ascertain the general tone of that discussion.


A second forum will be held on November 29th (at 4:00 p.m.—Imholte Hall) replicating the first.


There will be no committee meeting on November 27th (at least that is the plan for now). However, there will be meetings on December 4th and 11th in which we will try to review our discussions to date and to incorporate what discussions occurred in the campus community.




Our goal is also to establish a writing team (a smaller perhaps broadly representative group) which would prepare a very preliminary draft for committee members as a whole to review.


Note, it is our hope that Karen Cusey will be available to make copies of the Constitution and By-Laws (10 sets for the Forum on the 16th and presumably the ones on the 29th). In addition, we will have copies of the question on one sheet available for each participant as well (with some space after the questions for comment).


The Committee will convene again at 3:30 on November 20th in a room to be determined. Before then, the forum on the 16th, (another one on the 29th )


Additional committee meetings on December 4th and 11th.