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Academic Leadership Meeting Minutes

September 26, 2012

Library Rotunda


NOTE:  At times, issues of confidentiality may require that some items discussed in meetings be excluded from these minutes.

ALC MEMBERS:  Austin Asgill, Tom Ball, Sam Beadles, Richard Bennett, Renee Butler, David Caudill, Richard Cole, Lance Crimm, Tom Currin, Meg Dillon, Ameen Farooq, Alan Gabrielli, Steven Hamrick, Bob Homer, Ruston Hunt, Andrew McMorran, Joyce Mills, Thomas Nelson, Julie Newell, Mark Nunes, Jeff Orr, Nikki Palamiotis, Phil Patterson, Hassan Pournaghshband, Dawn Ramsey, Jeffrey Ray, Nancy Reichert, Han Reichgelt, Ronny Richardson, Becky Rutherfoord, Khalid Siddiqi, George Stickel, Denise Stover, Mark Sugalski, John Sweigart, Zvi Szafran, and Tim Zeigler

MEMBERS ABSENT:   Sam Beadles, Richard Bennett, Lance Crimm, Meg Dillon, Nancy Reichert, Ronny Richardson, Denise Stover, Tim Zeigler

GUESTS:  Max North for Ronny Richardson, Brichaya Shah, Priscilla Velasquez - Bookstore



Dr. Szafran introduced Priscilla Velasquez and two associates from the Bookstore.  Priscilla distributed a handout and spoke briefly about book orders, the need to have them early, and the ways faculty can submit them to the Bookstore.  The Bookstore is introducing several new options for students including textbook rental, eTextbooks, and competitive price matching from any brick and mortar bookstore.  Additionally they can help create bundled packages for students that include textbooks and/or class supplies, and custom textbooks.  She also reminded everyone that faculty and staff receive a 10% personal discount and a 20% University-related discount.


Item 2. Updates

Dr. Szafran updated the Council on the following:

  • Minutes – Dr. Szafran distributed the previous month’s Academic Leadership Council meeting minutes for review and approval and noted that this will be the new policy going forward for the Deans Council and the Academic Leadership Council.  The minutes were approved with one correction; Han Reichgelt was not present at the last Academic Leadership Council meeting.
  • Departmental RPG reports – due October 16
  • Permanent Schedules – are due to the deans on October 5
  • New Programs –
    • M.S. Civil Engineering – full proposal has been sent downtown for review
    • DPS – Minor corrections being made, will be sent downtown very soon.
  • Speakers – Isabel Wilkerson, Pulitzer Prize winner for her book, “The Warmth of Other Suns,” will be on campus for a lecture and book signing January 29, 2013 at 6:00 PM.  More information to follow.
  • Budget Cut – still at 3%
  • Searches – ads for the two chair positions will be posted in The Chronicle soon; January faculty hires will be advertised soon.  Szafran reminded the Council that advertising for the Fall 2013 positions does not guarantee that funding will be available to complete the hires.  He also reminded the Council that he needs the paperwork for Fall 2013 hires within the next week.  Nikki asked that if the new faculty position is to have graduate faculty status that it be noted on the paperwork.  A Council member complained that Human Resources is not sending out notices when Form A is approved.  Dr. Szafran stated that he would remind Human Resources to notify the departments when Form A is approved.  Additionally, he will send out a list of the approved faculty positions to the deans by Friday.
  • Capital Projects – Building J expansion was denied; Building D renovation currently is not on the list either.  The University is still hoping it will be approved.
  • Enrollment – is at 6,200 this semester, 802 are graduate students
  • Tuition Differential – Senior Staff is in active discussions about this.  Szafran, Sam Conn, and Ron Koger have been talking about ways to use technology to pre-register students before orientation.  Discussions are also taking place about the need to improve technology for online education and we should include consideration of “online students” in all discussions that affect “live” students.
  • Boyer Lecture – Szafran stated that the lecture and workshops were a success and assured the Council that there is no intention of having classes of 3,000 as some concerns were raised by faculty.
  • Convocation – Scheduled for October 5th at 11:00 AM
  • GRE Math Prep – the Math Department is offering prep for the GRE Math for $5
  • LSAMP – 37 students will be going; 18 are presenting papers
  • SIS – 4 students wrote papers that were accepted as a panel at the Southeastern Political Science Association meeting.
  • Architecture Building I-2 – won its 4th award
  • Georgia OML Courses – will be posted Monday
  • Boot Camp Part 1 – per Brichaya Shah went well; 117 faculty participated.  No major issues have been encountered with the migration.  Brichaya can arrange online training for distance faculty as well.  Szafran asked the chairs and deans to check the list from Dawn to be sure that the faculty that need the training take it and that either the faculty or the chair is checking to be sure all courses have migrated over correctly.
  • Future Educators – will be on campus October 6th and 20th.  Approximately 50 middle and high school students will be on campus for workshops, etc.
  • Authors Reception – Al Churella will be among those honored during the Library’s annual Authors Reception.  Churella’s book, “The Pennsylvania Railroad, Volume 1: Building an Empire, 1846-1917,” will be published in the fall.  The date of the Authors Reception will be sent out soon.
  • Greenhouse – is coming along well and the plants will be arriving soon.
  • Mediation Refresher Training – Becky announced that mediation refresher training will be available to those with prior mediation training on October 5th.  Scheduled from 9-12:00, the time may have to be adjusted to accommodate convocation.
  • Auxiliary Services – Kasey Helton has hired someone who will be available to film events on campus so that they can be viewed by those who can’t attend
  • Classical Indian Dance – tonight at 6:00 PM
  • Graduate Student Association – Nikki thanked the departments for their help in getting the word out about the Graduate Student Association which was recently approved.


Item #2.  Classroom Scheduling

Szafran distributed the time blocks recently reviewed at the Deans Council and asked the Academic Leadership Council to review and give feedback.  Several department chairs noted potential issues with the proposed blocks.  Szafran responded that he will look for ways around their issues.  Szafran asked for a vote on whether to open 12-1:00 on MWF for classes or have that time slot reserved for meetings.  The majority voted in favor of using that time slot for classes.  This topic will continue to be discussed in Deans Council.


Item #3.  Strategic Plan Goal to Increase Female Faculty

Szafran stated that it is our goal to increase our female faculty from 30% to 33% and asked for ideas and/or strategies from the Council.  To reach this percentage, one half of all new hires would have to be women.  Comments from the Council:

  • Arts & Sciences has highest percentage of women faculty
  • Have a daycare on campus – we are considered the least family-friendly employer in the county
  • Staff Council got information from a company that Life University uses for their daycare and is supposed to talk to the President about this.
  • P&P on leaves – ability to stop the tenure clock for maternity leave, etc.
  • Advertise in Women in Higher Education
  • Is there bias in the hiring process; statistics show males are hired over females
  • Need strategy for meeting the goal or come up with a reason why it can’t be met
  • Ask HR to give more mandatory training to search committees.  Szafran asked for volunteers to work together with Human Resources.  Julie Newell and Jeff Ray agreed to work with Human Resources to come up with training materials for search committees.
  • Work with Ph.D. programs at Georgia schools to have their students teach for us.


Item #4. Support for Online Students

Szafran open this discussion by asking how we take what we’re doing now and make it applicable to online students.  Comments:

  • We are already doing orientation online
  • What about online office hours?
  • Professional advisors work flex hours to be available some nights
  • Software access issues?  Dave Stone will follow up on this to broaden the licenses for students and part-time faculty without access to a campus computer
  • Need broader discussion about direction of online programs
  • SACS requires similar support for online as for live students – must be addressed in our 5th year report
  • IT should be involved in these discussions
  • Will be meeting in the future to discuss IT-specific issues
  • Many of the services students need are outside Academic Affairs
  • Virtual Admissions Counselor – graduate studies is looking at this
  • Wimba open houses for online students
  • ATTIC considering online tutoring in the Writing Center which will open next semester
  • Shared office hours to support Core classes

Szafran asked the Council to email items to him for later discussion.


Item 5. New Business

  • Bob Homer reminded the Council that the 9/15 deadline for last year’s goals has passed and the new goals are due now.  Bob will send an email reminder to those that have not submitted their goals.
  • The Library is celebrating “Banner Books Week”.
  • Technology fee proposals are due on 11/16 and if they contain space modifications, this part must be approved prior to submission.
  • Capital Projects – Senior Staff is putting together a comprehensive capital projects list – Szafran asked the deans to submit items to him to go on that list.


Action Items

  • Dr. Szafran stated that he would remind Human Resources to notify the departments when Form A is approved.  Additionally, he will send out a list of the approved faculty positions by Friday.
  • Julie Newell and Jeff Ray agreed to work with Human Resources to come up with training materials for search committees.


Future Agenda Items

  • Classroom scheduling
  • Services for online students