Faculty Senate Passes Academic Policy Resolutions; BOV Rector Addresses Body

Posted: March 4, 2010 at 1:03 am, Last Updated: March 4, 2010 at 9:00 am

By Robin Herron

The Faculty Senate passed two academic policy resolutions and heard a brief address from Board of Visitors (BOV) Rector Ernst Volgenau at its monthly meeting on March 3.

After receiving a resolution of appreciation from the senate for allowing faculty input regarding a two-year extension of President Alan Merten’s contract, Volgenau said that the process had been “quite a constructive event,” and that he felt the faculty members who interviewed Merten and wrote a report “behaved in a very professional way.”

Faculty Senate Chair Peter Pober will summarize the report for the BOV at its next meeting.

Volgenau also commented on the budget, saying he believes “we are in for years of difficult times.” He noted that a BOV strategic committee is looking at profit-making ventures that can help support the university, such as “real estate deals and commercial ventures of various types,” most likely as part of public-private partnerships. He added that the BOV committee is reviewing examples from other universities.

The senate passed a resolution to establish a policy on cross-level listing of undergraduate and graduate courses. The policy recommends avoiding cross-level listed graduate and undergraduate courses where possible and provides guidelines for such courses if they are offered. An amendment from the floor added language stipulating that exceptions would need approval from the dean or director of the school or college.

The senate also passed a resolution to shorten the academic “add” period from the current two calendar weeks to eight calendar days to avoid disruption and lost class time.  This change will take effect in fall 2011.

Details on these policy changes are posted with the meeting’s agenda.

Provost Peter Stearns also reported on indirect expenses for sponsored research, and Lloyd Griffiths, dean of the Volgenau School of Information Technology and Engineering, discussed his school’s current status and achievements.

The senate observed a moment of silence to mark the passing of Lorraine A. Brown, Professor Emerita of English.

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