University Senate

Meeting 538 Minutes

The University Senate
of Michigan Technological University

Minutes of Meeting 538
23 October 2013                                                     

The Senate

  • Presentation: “Early Intervention Team” by Dean of Students Bonnie Gorman and Deputy Chief of Police Brian Cadwell
  • Presentation: “USG Initiatives, Issues, and Goals” by Anthony Sharp
  • Presentation: “Current IT Project Updates” by Chief Technology Officer Daniel deBeaubien

1. Call to order and roll call. President Brian Barkdoll called the University Senate Meeting 538 to order at 5:30 pm on Wednesday, October 23, 2013. The Senate Secretary Marty Thompson called roll. Absent were Senators Oliveira and DeWinter and representatives of Army/Air Force ROTC, Chemical Engineering, Cognitive and Learning Sciences, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering, Academic Services A, Administration and Graduate Faculty Council.

2. Recognition of visitors. Guests included Max Seel (Provost’s Office), Bonnie Gorman (Dean of Students) and Daniel deBeaubien (Chief Technology Officer).

3. Approval of agenda. Velat motioned to approve the agenda; Woods seconded; it passed unanimously on a voice vote.

4. Approval of minutes from Meetings 537. Wood motioned to approve the agenda; Scarlett seconded; it passed unanimously on a voice vote.

5. Presentation: “Early Intervention Team” by Dean of Students Bonnie Gorman and Deputy Chief of Police Brian Cadwell [slides] 
Gorman, Dean of Students, described the early intervention plan and provided names of the early intervention team (EIT) members. She defined what constitutes a student of concern. Cadwell then discussed what to do when encountering a student of concern. He suggested referring students to a team member and provided contact information (link). Cadwell discussed what the EIT will do once a student of concern is reported. He noted punishment was not the goal, but to get the student back on a path to success. Riehl asked how a student with substance abuse problems would be assisted. Gorman said the response to substance abuse is counseling, but an incident associated with that substance abuse would be treated as a conduct issue. Breffle asked if these services were offered for non-students. Cadwell said not through the EIT but that Human Resources provides services for employees. Seel asked if that was the crisis team. Cadwell affirmed. Breffle asked how to keep reports on students of concern private. Gorman said students can always come to her office and she can decide how to proceed, she trusts that will be kept confidential. Beck asked if students with financial hardships are assisted by the EIT. Gorman acknowledged the challenge of dealing with financial hardships but said they are not specifically addressed by EIT. Beck said employment would be helpful. Gorman gave examples of ways that students can be assisted financially. Beck acknowledged the challenge but said informing students where to get help with financial difficulties. Gorman said the website is being updated to inform students about services that exist on campus. Beck said alumni might be interested in donating to that effort. Woods asked about guns. Cadwell said all weapons must be registered with Public Safety. Woods asked if students can come to class with a gun. Cadwell said they must be stored at Public Safety and cannot be anywhere on campus. Woods asked if handguns are registered as they aren’t used for hunting. Cadwell said there is a pistol range at the SDC and three gun clubs. Gorman concluded by saying they will make presentations at faculty meetings to educate and inform the campus about early intervention.

6. Presentation: “USG Initiatives, Issues, and Goals” by Anthony Sharp
Sharp, Undergraduate Student Government, described the role and organizational structure of the USG. He discussed the composition of student representation. Sharp discussed the number of student organizations comparable to USG in the State of Michigan and detailed several activities they coordinate with other Michigan universities. He then discussed the budget process and gave an update on several current projects. DeForest said they were inviting state representatives to come to Tech and provide a question and answer session for students. Sharp discussed the IT task force, multiple student issues and several public relations events. He concluded by stating the key USG goals for the year. Beck asked about the connections between USG and the various student groups. Sharp said they work closely with student activities for budgeting. Beck said there is a specific club that is having problems and wanted to know to whom to address his concerns. Sullivan said student activities can tell you who the advisor is and that the advisor to that student group should be contacted. Scarlett asked about including quality or landlord details with the USG sponsored property listings. Sharp said the website listings do not permit that. Scarlett said this might be a means to encourage poorly maintained properties to improve but acknowledged the complications involved with including such information on the website. Sharp said pictures are permitted. Breffle said the potential for slander means listing subjective information needs to be handled carefully. Sullivan asked about the new student organizations. Sharp said most groups work through student activities to be formed and USG assists later. Riehl said the debt wall was interesting and wondered if faculty could participate. Barkdoll thanked the speaker.

7. Presentation: “Current IT Project Updates” by Chief Technology Officer Daniel deBeaubien [link] 
deBeaubien, Chief Technology Officer, discussed the progress of current projects including, the ILC, library, labs and printing and cited the website for ongoing updates. He noted that certain projects are dependent on donations making a timeline difficult. deBeaubien then discussed the new ID card system, which includes banking. Patterson asked about the results of the IT survey. deBeaubien said Milligan does the survey each year and to contact him for the survey results. Beck asked when the parking lot gates will come down. deBeaubien said that Facilities Management manages parking. Wood asked if students are migrating to laptops. deBeaubien said there is a drive to have some kind of requirement for laptops but too many questions exist right now. Seel said the deans are discussing the use of laptops and surrounding issues. Wood said he has integrated laptop use in laboratories. deBeaubien said 97% of students bring laptops yet the questions of what software would we provide and how faculty use laptops to teach is uncertain. Wood commented on increasing needs to provide various software to students. deBeaubien said his group is rethinking expenditures, as IT costs shift to software licensing and use. Froese asked if centralization of IT has improved services to the user. He also commented that student fees were determined with printing costs factored in, yet now students are being charged separately for printing. deBeaubien said the policy change in color printing costs weren’t communicated well, but Tech spent greater than $240,000 on color printing for seven million pages. The problem was printing black and white using color printers was a majority of the cost. Policy issues were examined but ultimately increasing the cost per sheet was the decision. Froese said this is serious in the education mission and means the students pay for printing twice. Riehl suggested that departments collect fees for computing and should be allowed to a certain number of print pages. deBeaubien said that lab fees and computing fees are different. Waddell said that the per page printing costs are the same regardless of whether a black and white or color printer is used. deBeaubien affirmed this is true the way printing was charged last year, but will not be true the way printing is done next year because IT is shifting to a managed system that has two different rates. Breffle said the user pays model increases accountability, but students should be given a number of free prints, then be charged if they go beyond that number. deBeaubien explained that other universities have attempted the quota system which is a lesser abused system. Breffle commented that Tech could charge fees based on usage. Barkdoll suggested we go paperless. Scarlett expressed concern that these models may simply mean that printing costs shift to departments. Froese said different classes make different demands on computing resources and the lab fees were instated to compensate that, yet students pay printing fees and with these changes don’t get printing. deBeaubien said 100% of computing related course fees go back to that course via software or services, but a printing fee is different. Beck asked about paper consumption at MTU over the past 10 years. deBeaubien said as a result of this new policy 15% less this year over last and 99% less color. deBeaubien concluded by offering to come to a faculty or staff meeting to discuss department specific issues.

8. Report from the Senate President
Barkdoll deferred to old business

9. Reports from Senate Standing Committees

Academic Policy Committee. None. Scarlett said assembling IP material for departments. There is an administrative proposal to create an honors college, which is a type B issue, meaning the senate reviews and comments.

Administrative Policy Committee. None.

Curricular Policy Committee. None. Phillips said proposals coming forth at the next meeting. She said general education issues are being discussed.

Elections Committee. None. Riehl is reviewing the results of the ombudsman appointment committee.

Finance Committee. None. 

Fringe Benefits Committee. None. Waddell deferred to new business

Institutional Planning Committee. None.

Instructional Policy Committee. None.

Professional Staff Policy Committee. None. Panian said they met with the committee’s VP liaison and discussed issues.

Research Policy Committee. None.

10. Old Business
Senate Evaluation (Proposal 11-12) presented by Administrative Policy Committee.
Barkdoll said a review of the senate is policy and described the details of how this process will occur. He suggested senators review and comment on the report ahead of the survey.

11. New Business
Sense of the Senate Resolution on Improving Shared Governance presented by Fringe Benefits Committee  (overheads)
FBC Chair Craig Waddell said that the intent of the proposal is to improve shared governance at Michigan Tech. He provided a 700-year history of governance at Western universities, noting instances where university governance was sequestered or reclaimed. He emphasized the role of shared responsibility in the success of shared governance. Waddell provided a detailed history of the advent of a faculty senate at Michigan Tech and its evolution into the current university senate. He defined shared governance, discussed three warrants for shared governance, and described concerns about the current practice of shared governance, citing comments from the Administrative Policy Committee’s two most recent President and Executive Team Evaluations, which raised concerns about an administration-driven institution. Waddell said that shared governance was, essentially, the University Senate’s reason for existence, and he presented the Senate’s A-list and B-list responsibilities, as defined in the Senate Constitution. Waddell read the Sense of the Senate Resolution and asked Senate President Barkdoll how to proceed. Barkdoll explained the Sense of the Senate Resolution and provided options for voting. He asked for discussion. Waddell said that the purpose of the resolution is to put senate duties in the framework of shared governance. If the Senate believes that the President and Executive Team Evaluations suggest that shared governance isn’t working, we have a responsibility to work to improve this situation. Scarlett said he appreciates the effort but doesn’t understand the resolution to do something versus just doing it. Waddell said that the point of making a resolution is so that we might thereby be resolved to do something. He said that Barkdoll had recently posted a message about a forthcoming presentation by a University Vice President in which Barkdoll indicated that some Senators are afraid to speak up since they fear punishment from supervisors. Waddell said that the purpose of the resolution was to create a constructive framework within which suggestions for improvement might be more favorably received. Barkdoll said we are all working hard and are very busy, but if the Senate is to be taken seriously, then we have to do our assigned duties. He suggested we discuss the resolution and vote next meeting. Froese said he sees value in bringing this up and reaffirming our goal as a Senate. Riehl said that his constituents were please to see that the Senate might work to improve the current situation. He suggested we come back to this, as his departmental constituents were interested in discussing the resolution. Barkdoll asked everyone to discuss the resolution with their constituents. Scarlett moved that a vote be held at the next Senate meeting. Wood seconded. The motion passed on a voice vote.

12. Adjournment.  Froese moved to adjourn; Scarlett seconded the motion. President Barkdoll adjourned the meeting at 7:28pm

Respectfully submitted
by Marty Thompson
Secretary of the University Senate