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Meeting of the Faculty Council

Friday, April 13, 2018, 3:00 p.m.
Kerr Hall, 1001 (Eshelman School of Pharmacy (HTML)


3:00 p.m. Chair of the Faculty’s remarks

3:15 p.m. Chancellor’s remarks

  • Chancellor Carol Folt

3:35 p.m. Resolution 2018-3. (PDF) On Principles for the Protection and Promotion of Free Speech.

3:55 p.m. Scholarships, Awards and Student Aid Committee annual report

4:15 p.m. General Education Curriculum update

  • Professor Andrew Perrin

4:35 p.m. Status of Women Committee annual report (PDF)

  • Professor Margot Stein and Professor Brent Wissick (co-chairs)

4:45 p.m. Reports by title:

Administrative Board of the Library annual report (PDF)

  • Professor Hugh O’Neill

Community and Diversity Committee annual report (PDF)

  • Professor Rumay Alexander

Copyright Committee annual report (PDF)

  • Anne Gilliland, scholarly communications officer

Educational Policy Committee annual report (PDF)

  • Professor David Garcia

Fixed-Term Faculty Committee annual report (PDF)

  • Professor Susan Irons

4:50 p.m. Closed session: Special Report of the Honorary Degrees and Special Awards Committee

5:00 p.m. Adjournment

Informational Items

Video of Proceedings

Watch the full video [Streaming]

Journal of Proceedings of the Faculty Council

The Faculty Council of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill convened on April 13, 2018, at 3:05 p.m. in Kerr Hall, room 1001 at the Eshelman School of Pharmacy.

The following 48 members attended: Arnold, Austin, Babb, Baumgartner, Beltran, Berkowitz, Berman, Boettiger Cooney, Chambers, Chapman, Clement, Cox, Cuddeback, Dobelstein, Fisher, Folt, Furry, Gilland, Giovanello, Graham, Hannig, Hastings, Hessick, Hill, Ives, Joyner, Kireev, Kris, Larson, Lee, A. Levine, C. Levine, Lithgow, Malloy, McBride, Melehy, Moore, Nelson, Parise, Pukkila, Rashid, Scarlett, Song, Stearns, Thorpe, Tuggle, Upshaw and Wallace.

The following 23 members received excused absences: Aikat, Ammerman, Anksorus, Bloom, Burch, Calikoglu, Duqum, Edwards, Estrada, Fry, Kang, Khan, Koonce, Mauro, Mayer-Davis, Mizzy, Perelmuter, Renner, Sawyer, Steponaitis, Thorp, Walter, Willett and Yaqub.

The following 22 members were absent without excuse: Ansong, Brewster, Coble, Coyne-Beasley, Daughters, Elsherif, Estigarribia, Felix, Gilchrist, Hobbs, Lundberg, Mayer, Muller, Neta, Osterweil, Platts-Mills, Ramaswamy, Rubin, Savasta-Kennedy, Tepper, Zamboni and Zvara.

Others in attendance: Andringa (Undergraduate Representative)

Call to order

Secretary of the Faculty Emeritus Joseph Ferrell called the meeting to order at 3:05 p.m.

Chair of the Faculty remarks

Professor Leslie Parise welcomed members of the Faculty Council to the final meeting of the academic year. She thanked the Faculty Executive Committee members for their service and recognized Employee Forum Chair Shayna Hill for representing staff on the Communications Working Group. Professor Parise said that her goal next year will be to visit more of the standing faculty committees. She thanked staff in the Office of Faculty Governance and announced that Katie Turner is leaving the University. The faculty rose and applauded.

In Memoriam

Professor Parise presented a slideshow of faculty who died over the past year and led a moment of silence to reflect on their lives and contributions.

Professor Terry Rhodes (Music) offered remarks on the recent unexpected passing of Professor Jonathan Hess.

Chancellor’s remarks and question period

The chancellor updated the faculty on the status of the Campaign for Carolina. The campaign is currently being launched in a number of cities across the country. She recently met with representatives on Capitol Hill about a number of issues related to higher education, including renewal of the Higher Education Reauthorization Act.

Chancellor Folt said that the university is experiencing historic highs in fundraising efforts. The Capital Campaign topped $2 billion, which was the goal for fundraising in the previous campaign. The College of Arts and Sciences received historic gifts this year. The chancellor reminded the faculty that some gifts are current use, but most are given as part of the endowment, which means they cannot be used right away. She said the state is still giving the equivalent of an $8 to $9 billion endowment each year. The University receives $500 million per year from the state for operating costs that cover salaries, building repairs and maintenance.

Professor Nancy Fisher (Microbiology and Immunology) asked Chancellor Folt to clarify how many contacts the University has on Capitol Hill.

Chancellor Folt said that we have 150 alumni working on Capitol Hill working as staffers.

Professor Jennifer Arnold (Psychology and Neuroscience) said that over the years when there have been budget cuts, staff have left the University and their positions have not been filled. She said that staff are overworked, and she asked if the University was going to consider filling lost positions.

Chancellor Folt said that most positions are funded by the state, and the University has not received new money from the state. The University is falling behind on funding for leave and support for new programs. The only way to add new students is through online programs and while philanthropy has increased, we do not have a stable budget from the state yet. She said the goal is protect important programs from cuts.

Professor Jan Hannig (Statistics and Operations Research) said that faculty at Carolina are underpaid compared with similar universities.

Chancellor Folt said that faculty salaries are competitive at the starting level. She would like to see the authority for giving raises brought back to the campus. The chancellor now has to go to the Board of Governors and ask for raises over a certain percentage.

Resolution 2018-3. On Principles for the Protection and Promotion of Free Speech

Professor Parise explained that she charged the Communications Working Group with considering whether to adopt a version of the Chicago Principles after several students and a faculty member approached her about endorsing the principles. Professor Mimi Chapman chaired the working group.

Professor Mimi Chapman (Social Work) gave some background on the Chicago Principles that were developed by and adopted by faculty at the University of Chicago in 2015. The principles have received a lot of media attention due to concerns about free speech on campus.

Professor Chapman explained that the principles are not policies. They are meant to articulate aspirational values. The working group teleconferenced with Professor Geoffrey Stone, the chair of the working group at the University of Chicago, and decided to draft a document that would put the Chicago Principles in a Carolina context. Professor Chapman said the principles do not protect speech that is harassment, and they don’t address trigger warnings, hiring, or tenure. The principles support speech in the public square. Issues of time, place and manner are unaffected by the principles.

Professor Chapman said the faculty would need to decide whether the principles are necessary. She said that the working group did not survey faculty or students to gauge whether there is a problem with free speech on campus.

Professor Hassan Melehy (Romance Studies) said he is concerned that certain forms of protest, such as silent walk-out protests, may be quelled because of the language used in the statement.

Professor Michael Gerhardt (Law) said that the language is intended to address the “heckler’s veto,” or the act of shutting a speech down or obstructing it by heckling the speaker.

Professor Chapman said that heckling is not protected speech, but not necessarily illegal speech.

Chancellor Folt said that heckling has not been identified as illegal speech in North Carolina. Protesters can hold signs at events under state law.

Professor Gerhardt added that the principles are not policy.

Professor Hilary Lithgow (English and Comparative Literature) noted that the University of Chicago sent a letter to first-year students that was against trigger warnings and refers to the principles. She said she is worried about how the principles will be used.

Professor Chapman said that the principles and the letter that was sent are two different documents, and the working group is not asking the faculty to endorse the letter or take a position on trigger warnings. She said that the principles do not prohibit faculty from issuing trigger warnings in their classes.

Professor Lithgow said that students will associate the principles with the letter, and Professor Stone is on record saying the two are connected.

Professor John McGowan (English and Comparative Literature) said that the principles have nothing to do with the classroom. The letter came from the president of the university, not the faculty.

Professor Jennifer Larson (English and Comparative Literature) said that the letter came from the dean, but Professor Stone remarked that the letter was a victory.

Professor Lithgow asked whether Carolina has to adopt the principles.

Professor Chapman said that the working group discussed whether to draft our own principles, but decided that since the Chicago Principles are legally sound and took nine months to draft, the working group felt that it made sense to adopt them and draft a preamble to situate them in Carolina’s context.

Professor Gerhardt said that Professor Stone is not acting a spokesman for the committee. The principles are ultimately separate and not a policy.

Professor Emeritus Andrew Dobelstein (Social Work) questioned why the principles were needed and how they clarify the recent policy on free speech that was adopted by the Board of Governors.

Professor Chapman said that a perception exists that there is a problem with shutting down free speech on college campuses and faculty should reclaim the conversation. We don’t have data on whether the problem actually exists, but faculty need to grapple with the perception that there is a problem.

Professor Emeritus Dobelstein asked how the principles align with the BOG policy.

Professor Chapman replied that the BOG did create a policy on free speech, but the principles speak to the faculty’s aspirations, not to the BOG’s policy.

Chancellor Folt said that a number of other schools in the UNC system adopted the principles, and they are not in conflict with the BOG policy.

Professor Larson said that she is not in favor of adopting the principles without investigating whether there is a problem with speech on campus, and she would have liked more undergraduate student representation on the working group.

Professor Chapman said that student government can also adopt the principles, but the working group intended for the faculty to take a stance on the issue of free speech.

Professor Mark McNeilly (Business) said that if the faculty reject the principles, it sends a message that the faculty does not favor free speech. If the faculty endorse the principles, it also sends a message. There is anecdotal evidence that free speech is being shut down on college campuses.

Mr. Peter Andriga (Undergraduate Representative) said that he thinks that the student body should push against the notion that the University is anti-free speech.

Professor Carissa Hessick (Law) said that she agrees with principles. She said that the faculty is endorsing two different principles: protection of free speech and affirmative obligation. She said that faculty should recognize that we are adopting an affirmative obligation.

The resolution was adopted 28 – 4 with one abstention and was ordered enrolled.

Scholarships, Awards and Student aid annual report

Professor Don Hornstein (Law), chair of the Scholarships, Awards and Student Aid Committee, presented the committee’s annual report. The report contained data on the number of students receiving aid and the impact of aid on the credentials of the student body. The data show a sharp increase in the number of Carolina Covenant students graduating in six years.

General Education Curriculum update

Professor Andrew Perrin (Sociology) presented an update on revisions to the General Education Curriculum. He said that over the past month, the GEC Working Group has been gathering feedback from the feasibility and design committees, the Educational Policy Committee and the Faculty Council. They are currently examining ideas for the first-year seminar requirement, the Ideas, Information and Inquiry courses and the University 101 course.

The working group is discussing options for creating flexibility for transfer students to meet the requirements. The capacities are changing to balance disciplinary content with student needs. Details of the junior-senior communications-intensive courses are being developed to include communications professionals from the School of Media and Journalism.

Six pilot courses are under development and proposals for first-year alternative courses are being accepted. The pilot courses will offer an opportunity to measure the success of the proposed curriculum before legislation is brought to the Faculty Council for consideration next year.

Committee on the Status of Women annual report

 Professor Brent Wissick (Music), co-chair of the Committee on the Status of Women, presented the committee’s annual report. Professor Wissick noted that the committee has expressed frustration at the difficulty of getting data on female-identified faculty members. He also said that the committee would like to have another salary-equity study conducted.

Chancellor Folt said that there is already a salary equity study underway. 

Reports by title

The following committees submitted reports by title: Administrative Board of the Library, Community and Diversity Committee, Copyright Committee, Educational Policy Committee, and Fixed-Term Faculty Committee.

Professor Vaughn Upshaw (Public Health) said that the Community and Diversity Committee’s report seemed to focus on individual bias and not University policies. She would like the committee to reconsider policies such as those requiring test scores to be used in admissions processes.

Professor Rumay Alexander (Nursing), chair of the Community and Diversity Committee, said that the committee talked about structural barriers to diversity and inclusion as well, but did not document those conversations in the annual report.

Special report of the Honorary Degrees and Special Awards Committee

 The Faculty Council moved into closed session to prevent the premature disclosure of honorary degree information. The Council approved five nominees for honorary degrees to be presented at 2019 Commencement. The Council returned to open session.


Its business having been completed, the Faculty Council adjourned at 4:55 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Kathryn Turner
Faculty Program Specialist
Office of Faculty Governance

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