Minutes of the Wichita State University Faculty Senate
Monday, February 13, 2012
CH 126 3:30 pm
Members Present: Barut, Besthorn, Bolin, Bryant, Celestin, Close, Decker, deSilva, Friessen, Gibson, Hemans, Horn, Hull, Jacjobs, Jeffres, Klunder, Kumar, Lewis, Matveyeva, Miller, Mosack, Rillema, Rokosz, Ross, Russell, Skinner, M. Smith. Toops
Members Absent: Adler, Carruthers, DiLollo, Henry, Mandt, Moore-Jansen, Mukeerjee, Pulaski, P. Smith, Solomey, Thompson, Yeager, Yildirim
Members Excused: Beeson, Johnson
Summary of Action:
I. Call to Order
President Steven Skinner called the meeting to order at 3:30pm
President Skinner asked the Senate to pause for a moment of silence in honor of the death of Robert Lawless, professor of anthropology, on February 2, 2012.
II. Informal Statements and Proposals
Senator Jeffres reported that the student credit hours and enrollments in the Department of Math were higher than ever, but the department had a number of vacant faculty positions that it had not been authorized to fill. In addition, students have had to endure tuition increases. This was despite the fact that it has come to light that last year, people in a number of administrative positions had received substantial raises (one of 30%) resulting in the long term commitment of a great deal of money. She questioned the current priorities of the University.
III. Approval of the Minutes
The minutes of the January 23, 2012, meeting of the Faculty Senate were approved with no dissent.
IV. President’s Report
A. Presidential Search - President Skinner reported that the “Leadership Statement” for the search has been posted on the KBOR home page (kansasregents.org ) and that the Board will approve the statement at the KBOR meeting on February 15. He thanked all of the senators that attended the recent meeting with representatives of the search committee, and emphasized the point that their unity during that meeting was an essential reason that key wording of the leadership statement had been modified. That is, prior to that meeting the first qualification for the position was one that required the candidate to have “earned a terminal degree, or have meaningful executive experience in business, industry,…” After the meeting, as a result of the clear dissatisfaction with that statement expressed by the faculty in attendance, the committee modified the statement to read: “An earned terminal degree and significant experience in higher education is preferred; however individuals with meaningful executive leadership experience in business, industry, government or non-profit management are also encouraged to apply.” In addition, a new qualification was inserted that called for the candidate to possess “an in-depth understanding of, and appreciation for, the uniqueness of public higher education in an urban research university is important.” Senator Ross, a member of the presidential search committee, agreed that the senate voice was heard and this prompted the leadership of the search committee to modify the qualification as noted above. The search will close at the end of February, ten candidates will be chosen for “airport visits” and five of those will be chosen for campus visits. President Skinner encouraged all senators to get involved in the process when the candidates visit the campus.
B. Faculty Service Awards –All senators were urged to nominate a colleague for this year’s Faculty Service Awards. Nominations are due by February 24.
C. Transfer and Articulation – nothing new to report.
V. Committee Reports
Senator Ross, chair of Rules committee, thanked everyone for their assistance in filling open senate and senate committee positions. Open positions remain, but he will seek out assistance in filling those positions from the senators from the areas of the vacancies.
VI. Old Business
A. Policies and Procedures – Sections 9.10 through 9.12 proposed revisions – 2nd reading
During the January 23 Senate meeting, Senator Moore-Jansen reported that he and two other faculty members had examined the proposed revision of the University’s Intellectual Property Policy and found that they had no issues with the revisions of the document. President Skinner had invited Becky Hundley, ORA Intellectual Property Director, to speak about the revisions to the policy. The policy was originally developed in 2001 and revised in 2007. In 2010 she and the WSU General Counsel’s office initiated another revision of the document to "tighten up the document.” She indicated that an area of major concern was the ambiguity of the faculty share of the proceeds from the use of the intellectual property. Currently the faculty share is “no less than 50%.” As a consequence, the faculty share is dependent upon the shrewdness and negotiation skills of the faculty. The revised document calls for a 50% share for the faculty member and 50% for the University. Senator Klunder objected to the set 50% share on the basis that it actually reduced the size of the share that a faculty member might be able to negotiate. Senator Jeffres agreed with that assessment. Ms. Hundley agreed also that that was the case, but that she and the university counsel felt that the members of the faculty would probably prefer a set amount, and if that were the case, then the 50% share seemed to be the most appropriate share. Senator Hull interjected that he felt that a faculty member should be happy to share any amount. This issue was not settled by the arguments on the floor, and President Skinner stepped in to say that he would work with Ms. Hundley on the document. He will post the revised document on the web and bring it back to the Senate for another reading.
VII. New Business -- None
VIII. As May Arise
SGA representatives announced that the SGA was drafting new surveys for the student body, and that they would keep the Faculty Senate informed about the suveys as well as the results when they become available.
The meeting of the Faculty Senate was adjourned at 4:25pm.
Submitted by Walter Horn
Secretary of the Faculty Senate