Campus Resources and Planning Committee
October 30, 2008
Members Present: Kathy Julik-Heine, Escillia Allen, Zak Forde, Shannon Juhnke,
Sara Haugen, Karen Cusey, Pete Wyckoff, Dave Swenson, Michelle Page,
LeAnn Dean, Jacquie Johnson, Brook Miller, Bryan Herrmann
Guests: James Morales, Cheryl Contant
Follow-up with James Morales
James wanted to give committee members an update on the staffing developments in the Admissions office. The proposal he plans to move forward with has been shared with administration and the staff in the Admissions office. He believes the new organizational chart will put us in a better position. Additionally, we need a structure with clear reporting lines and supports what we need to do. The new structure also lays out a promotional track for Admissions counselors. Dave expressed concern that it has become practice at UMM that we create positions around people and wants to make sure weÕre meeting the needs that we actually have. Michelle asked if the new organizational structure increases or decreases staff. James responded that we are currently down two positions in Admissions. James added that about 30% of our applications are stealth applicants and he canÕt stress enough the importance of using the web as a recruiting strategy.
Pete is concerned about this year and any transitions. He believes we need a clear line of command. He agrees that we need a director and a web graphic person but wondered who will fill these rolls as we transition. If the staff is already over-extended, he would like to hear that they would be stripped of some of their duties to let them focus on their new roles. He believes assignments that are not mission-critical should be given to other staff. Brook asked if the web and graphic designer person would interface with Computing Services. James said a working relationship would need to be developed. Pete asked if James has a timeline in mind. James responded that hopefully by the middle of November after he has consulted with this committee, division chairs, vice chancellors and the Consultative Committee. He is asking for a statement of support or endorsement from CRPC. Brook suggested that committee members discuss on our moodle site. CRPC will make a statement next week.
Discussion with Cheryl Contant
Pete welcomed Cheryl to the meeting and asked for her thoughts about what the dean might do with a tight budget. Cheryl responded that sheÕs heard from various people on campus about the higher enrollment numbers in the past while at the same time hardening salary lines. She wondered if maybe we have too many faculty for the number of students we currently have—she doesnÕt know. She added that if we made any changes, they will likely be incremental. But doing it incrementally is also problematic. Another problem to consider is the financial situation on the academic side, which leads to a point of uncertainty. She noted there were 17 requests for faculty positions and that clearly all of those could not be replaced. While we need to insure a level of integrity and at the same time, determine our best estimate of student demand for courses, we decided that we will replace 7 positions. For future planning, perhaps we will have to come up with a predetermined number. WeÕll need to figure out our most critical replacements and opportunities to grow programs to increase our enrollment with the least cost to the academic institution. We will also need to tie requests to program assessments. Because of the tight financial situation, there will be an expectation that we will do a much better job watching our recruitment expenses.
Dave asked about the possibility of increasing our adjunct faculty ranks intentionally so we have greater flexibility when it comes to budget planning. Cheryl responded that from a financial perspective, thatÕs the right thing to do; however, it is not consistent with the mission or culture of this institution. Having said that, she wouldnÕt be surprised to see some movement in that direction if necessary. Kathy expressed concern that with fewer tenure track positions, students will not have the close connection with faculty members. Cheryl added that the best thing we can do is to hire the right faculty at the beginning and treat them well when they are here by letting them teach courses they are competent in and that they fill the mission of their discipline and allow them to advance their careers. Jacquie added that there are opportunities at UMM that are not available anywhere else for faculty, i.e., sabbatical or single semester leaves. There are some issues that are long overdue in facing and at some point weÕll have to ask if we can do everything or if we need to make choices.
Moodle demonstration by Karen Cusey