September 9, 2016

MEMBERS PRESENT:  Boikess, Borisovets, Cotter, Esposito, Gillett (Chair), Gould, Krapivin, Krutyansky, Mouradian, Otto, Puhak, Swalagin (Executive Secretary), Thompson, Van Stine, Wang


ALSO ATTENDING:  B. Lee (Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs), A. Patel (Student Representative to Board of Governors), S. Rabinowitz (Faculty Representative to the Board of Governors) [Note: There was a conflicting Board of Trustees meeting in Camden at the time of this meeting.]

The regular meeting of the University Senate Executive Committee was held on Friday, September 9, 2016 at 1:10 p.m. in Room ABC of Brower Commons, College Avenue Campus.

1.    Chair’s Report  - Peter Gillett, Senate Chair

Senate and Executive Committee Chair Peter Gillett called the meeting to order at 1:10 p.m. He called for introductions all around. He referenced the email he had sent to the Senate at the beginning of the academic year, which summarized his vision and goals for the Senate going forward. He also spoke about:
2.    Secretary’s Report - Ken Swalagin, Executive Secretary of the Senate
3.    Administrative Liaison

Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Barbara Lee presented an administrative report, which included comments on:
Lee then responded to questions, or heard comments on the above subjects, as well as:
4.    Standing Committees

Issues/Proposed Charges:

Gillett reminded the committee members that they were being asked whether or not to issue the proposed charges; not to debate the issues themselves.

Proposed Charge to Academic Standards, Regulations and Admissions Committee (ASRAC) on Change in Graduation Date for Students Completing Degrees in Summer - Requested by Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Barbara Lee, Submitted by Immediate Past Senate Chair Ann Gould

The above matter and rationale submitted by Lee were discussed, and a charge issued to the ASRAC as follows:

Charge A-1610 - Change in Graduation Date for Students Completing Degrees in Summer: At the request of Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Barbara Lee, consider a proposal to move the official graduation date from October to August for students who complete degree requirements in the summer, which ensures that official reporting of summer degrees falls within the parameters of federal reporting regulations and better reflects when students actually complete their degrees. Respond to the Senate Executive Committee by November 2016.

[Barbara Lee left the meeting at 2:00 p.m.]

Proposed Charge to Student Affairs Committee (SAC) on University Policy on Student Use of Drugs and Alcohol
- Submitted by Student Senator and New Brunswick Student Member of the Executive Committee Viktor Krapivin

The above matter and rationale submitted by Krapivin were discussed, and a charge issued to the SAC as follows:

Charge S-1611 - Examination of University Policy on Student Use of Drugs and Alcohol: Consider, evaluate, and make recommendations, if necessary, for changes to university policy on student use of drugs and alcohol. Consider the role of restorative justice in university policy. Consider the role of restorative justice in this university policy. Consider any deterrent effects of current policy to students seeking emergency medical services. Refer to the Medical Amnesty Report authored by the Rutgers University Student Assembly for additional information when considering this charge. Respond to Senate Executive Committee by January 6, 2017.

Proposed Charge to Academic Standards, Regulations and Admissions Committee (ASRAC) on Changes to the Rutgers University Academic Integrity Policy - Submitted by Faculty Senator and ASRAC Co-chair Martha Cotter

The above matter and rationale submitted by Cotter were discussed, and a charge issued to the ASRAC as follows:

Charge S-1609 - Revisions to Rutgers University Academic Integrity Policy: Consider and make recommendations on how the Rutgers University Academic Integrity Policy should be revised in light of the merger with units of the former UMDNJ. Should there be a single academic integrity policy applicable to all Rutgers schools and colleges? Should the procedures for adjudicating alleged violations of academic integrity be different for different types of schools? As part of the deliberations, consider the draft academic integrity policy tentatively endorsed by the 2013 ad hoc committee charged with reconciling the Rutgers Code of Student conduct and Academic Integrity Policy with the UMDNJ document Student Rights, Responsibilities, and Disciplinary Procedures. Respond to Senate Executive Committee by November 4, 2016.

[Ann Gould left the meeting at 2:30 p.m.]

Proposed Charge/Issue Raised on Implementation of Senate Reports/Recommendations
- Submitted by PTL Senator and Executive Committee Member Karen Thompson

The following submission by Thompson was discussed:

“I would like to figure out how to maximize the possibility that reports/recommendations such as this one (Response to Charge S-1409 on Greater Integration of Contingent Faculty in the Rutgers Community) do in fact reach implementation of some sort. Could we consider assigning another committee the task of developing a method of ensuring implementation of Senate recommendations in this specific case and with others? If that is to be the EC’s role, could we consider how to best ensure that something indeed happens. I seem to recall that there is an opportunity for the Chair of the Senate to meet with the President/Chancellors to discuss just this problem and President Barchi has, I think, made some headway in this area. Could we talk about a more concrete procedure to use in the future?”

No charge was issued, but the following were suggested to help track implementation of Senate reports and recommendations:
Add a regular item to Executive Committee agendas reviewing Senate recommendations from the past two or three months.
Create a separate webpage of Senate reports lacking administrative responses, and link that to each Executive Committee agenda.

Ken Swalagin will draft a table of the previous two years' Senate reports/recommendations, and the administrative responses to those items. That will be brought to the Executive Committee to discuss what has, or may have been, implemented. Where there are still questions regarding implementation, the Executive Committee will ask President Barchi to respond.

Potential Merger of Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (GSBS) and Graduate School - New Brunswick (GSNB) into a new Rutgers School of Graduate Studies - Peter Gillett, Senate Chair

This matter, now somewhat revised from previous discussions, had been discussed in general terms at previous Executive Committee meetings. Gillett explained that a proposal to create a new Rutgers School of Graduate Studies was nearing completion by Dean Jerome Kukor and Dean Kathleen Scotto, and that the proposal and Senate-mandated questionnaire should be completed within the next week. When the proposal is received, Swalagin will send it to all committee chairs for review at their upcoming meetings on September 23, and will include the following instruction/timeline:
5.    University Senate Agenda

The September 23, 2016 Senate Meeting agenda was discussed, and will include:
6.    Old Business

Proposed Charge on Handling of Student Complaints: This matter had been discussed previously [See Section 4, Standing Committees - Issues/Proposed Charges in the Minutes of June 3, 2016 Senate Executive Committee Meeting.] Faculty Senator David Hughes had written: "The union is now dealing with at least two grievances arising from student complaints handled poorly." Natalie Borisovets discussed the matter with Hughes, and writes that it "...does seem to be a legitimate area of concern. There are apparently a couple of cases where the AAUP has had to become involved because the lack of any recognized channels for student complaints resulted in things escalating way beyond what would seem to be necessary." Hughes proposed a charge "along the lines of":

Design a procedure for investigating student complaints against instructors, beginning at the department level, and, if necessary, escalating upwards from there.

Barbara Lee had responded previously with additional information about how complaints are, or can be, handled. The Executive Committee again discussed the matter, and issued a charge to the Student Affairs Committee, as follows:

Procedures for Handling Student Complaints Against Rutgers Personnel: Investigate procedures at Rutgers for handling student complaints against University personnel, and make recommendations regarding how such procedures should be best publicized and communicated, and how the rights of all parties might be appropriately protected. Consider also how training might improve our response to such complaints. Respond to Senate Executive Committee by March 17, 2017.

Draft Report on Parliamentary Procedure - Submitted by Peter Gillett, Senate Parliamentarian and Chair: This matter had been discussed at the June 2016 meeting, at which time Gillett asked for additional feedback to be sent to him. He again asked for feedback for the November Executive Committee meeting, stating that his intention was that the elements of his report be added to the Senate Handbook.

Appointment of University Commencement Panel: Appointment of a University Commencement Panel (UCP) is codified in a policy and report issued by the Senate, and emanating from the University Structure and Governance Committee. The UCP is responsible for appointing Senators to the chancellors' commencement committees. Pursuant to the policy and adopted procedure, volunteers for the UCP will be solicited (by Ken Swalagin), and the Executive Committee will make appropriate appointments to the UCP at the next Executive Committee meeting.

7.    New Business

Appointment of Senate Parliamentarian for Academic Year 2016-17: The Executive Committee approved Peter Gillett's appointment of Jon Oliver as Senate Parliamentarian for the current academic year. Oliver has agreed to serve in this capacity.

Discussion of Revised Acceptable Use Policy for Information Technology Resources: Natalie Borisovets expressed concern about the Acceptable Use Policy for Information Technology Resource containing reference to a particular piece of software, as well as other problems with the revised policy. Adrienne Espositio volunteered to consult with the IT staff who worked on revising the policy, and bring a proposed charge to the Executive Committee at the next meeting.

8.    Adjournment
The meeting adjourned at 4:47 p.m.

Minutes written and submitted by,

Ken Swalagin
Executive Secretary of the University Senate