FACULTY REPRESENTATIVE ASSEMBLY MEETING
February 12, 2010
Attendance: Andrew Czaplewski, Jackie Berning, Peg Bacon, Brian Burnett, David Moon, Jim Null, Pam Carter, Suzanne Cook, Peggy Beranek, Morgan Shepherd, David Anderson, Tom Huber, Christina Martinez, Sylvia Martinez, Dorothea Olkowski, Tom Napierkowski, Andrea Hutchins, Bob Durham, Amanda Sinclair, Catherine Kelly, Barbara Frye, Andrew Ketsdever, Eddie Portillos, Don Klingner, Charlie Shub, Don Morley, Ron Fitz
Call to Order / Approval of Minutes:
Motion to approve the minutes from December 11, 2009 meeting by Jim Null
Seconded by Jackie Berning
Motion passed unanimously
Reports of Visitors:
CU Board of Regents Chair Steve Bosley:
Regent Bosley stated that he did not have an agenda but was present at this meeting to answer questions. He praised our Leadership Team for their insight and optimism during these difficult financial times. He also took time to recognize Don Klingner for being named a Distinguished Professor.
His main emphasis concerned budget issues and CU system efforts to deal with the affects on higher education. President Benson has developed a good relationship with the state legislature by making them realize that higher education is an important resource you can’t even begin to measure. It is an important investment in the state’s overall future and its ability to generate successful leadership, which is especially necessary during economic challenges.
Educating the general public is also necessary to ensure an understanding of how higher education is funded in Colorado. There are many false notions held by the voters which lead them to believe that state funding of higher education is excessive and wasteful or should not be a high priority. President Benson and the regents are using every opportunity to inform Colorado residents of higher education realities and educating the public about the importance of investing in their future.
President Benson and the regents are also working to ensure that there are more equitable cuts across higher education and not disproportionate to CU. In addition, they are reviewing solutions used by other states which have a dedicated source of revenue. “Solutions have to evolve as we go,” he stated. CU was born poor and has come a long way due to its strong leadership. UCCS in particular is admired for its conservative budgeting practices. The Leadership Team realizes the need to use stimulus money as backfill rather than for operating costs, while we’re in the process of restructuring.
Regent Bosley then answered general questions posed by Faculty Assembly representatives.
Spring enrollment is strong – up by more than 6% from last year; resulting in the largest- ever spring enrollment. The campus also posted a 28.6% increase in the number of transfer students. In addition, for the third year in a row, the qualification of our students is high with an average index score of 107, while our admission index score is 92. Our colleges and programs are attracting good quality students. For the second year in a row, we are number one in the state for student pass rates on professional license exams in all disciplines.
Concrete reports should be available at the beginning of March regarding all of the funding initiatives, which will reveal where we are with the cuts we will have to take this spring relative to the approaching cliff effect. There should be $8-$10 million left in our state funding budget next July (2011). Next week there will be meetings with all campus government associations to review the cut plan and initiatives, which will begin in March. There will also be a series of forums in March to describe plans in more detail; however, specifics will not be discussed because state personnel policies and notifications must be followed. A system announcement of the impact will be made on April 2, which will then take effect on July 1, 2010. We need an increase in net revenues of $12 million by July 2011 to offset the cliff effect and we are a little over halfway there. Sacrifices will need to be made which will be acknowledged and appreciated.
Work is being done on a health plan replacement project for the entire CU system and its affiliates, which would involve becoming self-insured. The committee has been engaged in the careful examination of legal, federal and state requirements along with reviewing transition costs. Kaiser would still be made available too, but since rate increases keep escalating, other alternatives are also being investigated. Both Memorial and Penrose are looking at participating with state campus resources. Such major changes could redesign the whole health care plan. The necessity of having controls in place for self-funding is also very important. Payroll & Benefit Services and representatives from the health plan team will be conducting employee forums on each campus to discuss what's new, plans for prevention and wellness initiatives and to seek employee input for future plan features, so be sure to attend the campus forums in March and April for more information.
The Dependent Eligibility Verification process is underway and verification packets are being mailed starting today, February 12. Employees will need to submit verification only for those dependents they intend to continue university benefit plan coverage for starting July 1. The purpose of this process is to be sure there is fairness and equity in reporting of eligible dependents so that we are not paying for those who are not eligible for coverage.
Barbara Gaddis and Anthony Cordova:
February is National Mentoring Month and mentoring is the most important thing faculty and staff can do to assist students. First Year Experience mentors are very beneficial for incoming freshmen and the MOSAIC mentors target minority students. Mentorship volunteer forms can be found on the websites for MOSAIC and First Year Experience.
Our new Vice Chancellor for Student Success and Enrollment Management, Bucky Wesley, will be starting on July 1. Spring enrollment is up 7.2%. All of the deans have their numbers for budget cuts in their areas. The Academic Innovation Teams are working diligently on their tasks. The General Education Task Force will be sending out a survey very soon to all faculty to get their input on appropriate general education goals. It is a very short survey that will only take about 15 minutes to complete and everyone’s participation is encouraged. The new Event Center has been hosting several men’s and women’s basketball games with our teams, so be sure to go out and show your support.
Faculty Assembly elections are coming up and a nomination notice will be sent out to all faculty shortly. Please be sure to notify Catherine immediately of any possible nominations for President-Elect.
Past President’s Report
Jackie mentioned to Regent Bosley that it would be appreciated if the Regents would be sure to get faculty input on issues. She told the assembly about the Board Operation Principles, which are attached in draft form.
Reports from Standing Committees:
EPUS will be working on changes to FRPA (Scholarly Reports); and vetting the General Education Task Force general education assessment and goals
Personnel & Benefits:
Faculty Advisory Committee on the Budget:
No report – no money
Minority Affairs Committee:
Survey regarding research on campus is in development and Institutional Research will distribute it when completed.
Non-Tenure Track Faculty:
No one present – no report
Athletic Director took over the missing coach position on interim basis
Tom Huber is replacing Judith Rice-Jones as the Committee Chair; Sustainability Council is merging with this committee and Tom will be the combined Chair
No one present – no report
a. Item F, section 4-b: “inform the student of his/her right to proceed with internal college procedures.” (motion to remove passed; 10-yes, 5-no)
b. University of Colorado at Colorado Springs Academic Ethics Code changed to University of Colorado at Colorado Springs Student Academic Ethics Code (motion to change title passed unanimously)
Motion to adjourn the Faculty Assembly Meeting by Jim Null
Seconded by Charlie Shub
Motion passed unanimously
Meeting adjourned at 2:05 p.m.