March 12, 2010

MEMBERS PRESENT:  Borisovets, Cotter (Interim Vice Chair and Faculty BOG Representative), Gillett, Gould, Katz (by phone), Levine, McArdle, Nycz, Panayotatos, Rabinowitz (Chair), Swalagin (Executive Secretary), Thompson, Wild

EXCUSED:  Bodnar, Leath

ALSO ATTENDING:, Fehn (Administrative Liaison), Furmanski (Administrative Liaison), Kaplan (Student BOG Representative), Slavin (Undergraduate Student BOT Representative)

The regular meeting of the University Senate Executive Committee was held on Friday, March 12, 2010 at 1:10 p.m. in the Executive Board Room of Administrative Services Building-III, Cook Campus.

1. Chairperson’s Report 

Senate and Executive Committee Chairperson Samuel Rabinowitz called the meeting to order at 1:21 p.m. There was some informal discussion about spring break starting on Sunday henceforth because of Saturday classes, but there were no charges issued or action taken on the matter. There was no chairperson's report.

2.    Secretary’s Report
3.    Selection of Nominating Panel Members for Election of 2010-11 Senate Officers, Executive Committee Members, and Board Representatives: Suggestions were made for this year's Nominating Panel membership, including Victor Greenhut as chair of the panel. Secretary Swalagin will contact those suggested.

4.    Administrative Liaison

Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Philip Furmanski presented an administrative report, with comments on topics which included:
Senator Justine Levine asked about the potential for staff layoffs due to the budget rescission, and union-negotiated provisions that salary increases could be delayed in exchange for a commitment of no layoffs prior to January 1, 2011. Furmanski responded that Rutgers would need to wait until it knows what the state has in store relative to Rutgers funding, and that some units are modeling staff layoffs after the January 2011 date. Furmanski also noted that the mid-year funding rescission is a very serious problem.

5.    Standing Committees 

Committee Reports:

The Research, and Graduate and Professional Education Committee (RGPEC) Response to Charge S-0913, Opportunity Disparities between Part- and Full-Time Master’s and Professional Degree Programs was summarized by Senator McArdle, co-chair of the RGPEC. Suggestions were made, and accepted by McArdle, to clarify the meaning of "lab meetings" and to specify that the central administration should encourage units to consider the unique needs of part-time students. The report will be revised, and will be docketed for action at the March 26 Senate meeting.

The University Structure and Governance Committee (USGC) Response to Charge S-0712, Enhanced Shared Governance, and University Senate had not yet been received (link goes to the report that was presented to the Senate on March 26), but Senator Gillett, co-chair of the USGC, summarized its content. Following some discussion, the report was docketed for introduction (as it requires a bylaws change) at the March 26 Senate meeting. [Note: The report could not be finalized in time for introduction at the March Senate meeting, and was pulled from the docket.]

Issues/Proposed Charges:

Proposed Charge/Issue regarding Academic Calendar, Seven-Week "Mini-terms" and Spring Break Saturdays, sent by Camilo Garcia, Camden Registrar. This charge was discussed at the February 2010 Executive Committee meeting, and a charge was to have been drafted, but Martha Cotter, ASRAC co-chair, asked that the Executive Committee revisit the discussion. Cotter will speak with Mr. Garcia and consider drafting a charge on this matter for consideration by the Executive Committee at a future date.

6.    March 26, 2010 University Senate Agenda

Items were docketed for the March 26 Senate agenda, as follows:
7.    Old Business

Faculty and Personnel Affairs Committee (FPAC) Charge-Deadline Extensions: Senator Panayotatos, co-chair of the FPAC, requested and was given extensions on FPAC charge deadlines, as follows:
Research, and Graduate and Professional Education Committee Charges and Chairs: Senator Levine asked if the RGPEC had any specific, pending charges. Senator McArdle, RGPEC co-chair, said that there is one, and that he expects another to be suggested by the committee soon. Levine also suggested that it would be useful to have a faculty Senator co-chairing the RGPEC, and the Executive Committee suggested trying to recruit such a co-chair next year, and that Vice President Furmanski may be able to recommend someone.

Senate Efficiency, and Renewal of Senate Revitalization Committee Recommendations and Identified Issues:
The issue of Senate efficiency and what might be done to improve Senate functions in all areas, beyond what the University Structure and Governance Committee may do on specific issues, was again discussed. Secretary Swalagin said that he is still trying to locate documents from the 1997-98 Senate Revitalization Committee, and would bring those to the Executive Committee for discussion as soon as they are found. There was considerable discussion of the Senate's qualities, and ways in which it might be improved, and eventually it was concluded that an extended examination of Rutgers' and other senates, as well as the Rutgers' and generally accepted systems of shared governance, would be useful. Swalagin will draft a mission statement or charge to serve as a starting point to assign this examination to a diverse, university-wide group. Swalagin will circulate the draft statement to the Executive Committee for comment before proceeding.

8.    New Business

There was no new business.

9.    Adjournment
The meeting adjourned at 3:46 p.m.

Ken Swalagin
Executive Secretary of the University Senate