Campus Resources and Planning Committee

April 29, 2011

 

 

Present:           Mark Privratsky, Sydney Sweep, Dave Aronson, Margaret Kuchenreuther,

                        Lowell Rasmussen, Pam Gades, LeAnn Dean, Sarah Haugen, Bart Finzel,

                        Carol Cook, Martin Seggelke, Zak Forde

 

 

Guests:            Colleen Miller, Maddy Maxeiner, Jeff Ratliff-Crain, Sandy Olson-Loy, Jim Hall,

                        Janet Ericksen, Michael Korth, Cheryl Contant

 

Announcements

 

Agenda today will include a brief budget update from Lowell.  Sara Haugen will talk about the backfill proposal.   Jeff Ratliff-Crain will give us an update on the reorganization in the Academic support services area.

 

Minutes from December 10, 2010, January 28, 2011, February 4, 2011, February 11, 2011, February 18, 2011, and February 25, 2011 approved as presented.

 

Budget update

 

Lowell reported that we were following the instructions from the budget meeting in March on how to reach the $1.73 million dollar cut.   Some of the ways we are addressing this is by looking at RIOÕs, voluntary layoffs, moving some non-O & M revenue to O & M funded areas, eliminating tuition reserve, and reducing discretionary travel spending.  We do not have definite numbers on the RIOÕs because people have until May 15 to decide.  It appears we will make the $700,000 target with RIOÕs and voluntary layoffs.  We will still have a deficit for next year, but he assumes this will become the work of the Resource Allocation Review committees and that they will come back with recommendations.    Sara requested that if our budget office is looking to take carry forwards, that people be notified ahead of time that this will occur.

 

Backfill proposal

 

Sara reported that in 2005 in her role as coordinator for the Commission on Women, she was approached by faculty members who felt they were adversely affected by UMMÕs lack of a backfill policy.  She was asked to look into this and determine if there were models available for us to use.  A recommendation was presented to then Chancellor Schuman and Dean Schwaller who were receptive to the recommendation, but there was no money at the time.  In fact, the recommendation has been presented to every interim dean and now two chancellors—all have been supportive.   Now that the campus, with CRPC endorsement, has created a strategic initiatives fund, she feels that this is the right time to bring the proposal forward.

 

Bart asked about the rationale for the proposed $30,000 of funding.  There isnÕt a rationale for the $30,000 amount; however the Dean and Division Chairs have all agreed this is a reasonable amount to start with and they support the need to have backfill available.    The proposal will be presented for action at the next CRPC meeting.

 

Reorganization

 

Jeff reported that the changes in the academic support areas made in 2009 were two-fold:  to capture some potential efficiency after necessary changes due to the layoffs of several personnel and to co-locate some of those services.  Those offices effected included:  Academic Advising, Academic Center for Enrichment (ACE), Career Services, and Retention as one connected unit—CARE--and Academic Assistance and Disability Services as a separate unit.   Although each office has its own individual emphasis and primary duties, the goal is to build synergy among them and recognize the ways in which students can gain through interactions with each.  The office of the Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs provides leadership and administrative oversight for these offices.

 

Zak asked if the assistant dean position would remain next year.   Jeff said he knows the Consultative Committee has been discussing that position and he sees this as being linked with the current search for the DeanÕs position.  Pareena asked if there has been conversation about Academic Assistance coordinator position going back to a 9-month position.  Jeff said whether or not the position is a 9-month or 10-month is something that they will continue to review.  Zak said that while changes are important, he is worried about the consistency and continuity especially in the academic assistance area. 

 

Bart asked if one advantage of co-location is to have cross-training opportunities and wondered if we are moving forward with cross training.  Jeff said the Academic Assistance and Disability Office has been able to do that better than the other offices.  He added that we have relied on the Retention Coordinator to be a person of all trades.  Margaret asked if discussions have taken place with the staff in these offices to ask them how things are working.  Jeff said he knows there are challenges brought about because of the timing of when offices could move, etc.  Input from the staff and finishing the co-location will be critical to taking the next steps in a more purposeful manner.

 

Margaret added that there have been some rumblings about the idea of a student One Stop Office and wondered if any of the offices are directly related to this.  For example, one could ask if advising is logically related to the RegistrarÕs Office function and should be co-located with it.   While things remain in progress, Bart wondered if there is going to be some stability once the latest changes get done and will additional resources be needed for reconfiguration? Jeff said that in the current model of staffing, we are limited with what we can do with new programming, new initiatives, and to take the time to envision how things should be.  It will be hard to continue with this level of staffing if we have increased demands.  We are a campus that clearly supports students in a very individualistic way and these offices end up being a linchpin for that model.  Knowing how hard these offices work, we will likely be asking for more resources to provide the services the campus expects.  Sandy asked if he has had a chance to look at other liberal arts colleges or the Morris 14 for comparisons.   Jeff said weÕve done some office-to-office comparisons, but itÕs difficult to find models similar to our current structure.  What we have determined is that we are definitely on the slim side in terms of the support staff for these functional areas.