September 8, 1995
Transcript, Meeting of the General Faculty and Faculty Council
Friday, September 8, 1995
Assembly Room, Wilson Library
Faculty Council Attendance
Present 67; Excused Absences 8; Unexcused Absences 16.
Chancellor Hooker (including Presentation of Hettleman Awards)
I’m Michael Hooker, newest member of the Philosophy Department. And I want to begin by thanking so many of you for the marvelously warm reception that I’ve received. It’s almost indescribable, coming back to be chancellor at the institution where one was an undergraduate. I’ve said so many times that this campus is a magic place for me. I really discovered myself here. I came of age here, and it still has that quality of magic for me when I just walk from here to South Building. Every day that I step foot on campus I have a feeling that is as strong and as robust as it was before. And there’s a downside to that. I was telling — I think it was Jim LeLoudis — that occasionally I’ll be walking across campus and I’ll have what can only be characterized as a flashback. That is, suddenly I’m transported back to 1967 or 68, 69, and I have a feeling that I had then and haven’t had since then. The other day it happened as I was walking past Phillips Hall — actually I went down to the Stove to get a cup of coffee and discovered the Stove was closed [laughter]. But as I was walking past Phillips Hall I was ripped by anxiety, and I looked at the building and then I realized I was worried about my Physics exam. And I told George I still see the faculty through the eyes of an undergraduate, and so when I look at you I’m reminded of the paper deadline that’s past — it’s a strange experience. At any rate I’m just elated to be home. You can be sure that everything that I do here will be a labor of love, and the mistakes that I make will be mistakes of stupidity, not mistakes of inattention or lack of concern.
Let me introduce Elson Floyd, who I know came in. Elson is my newest hire, my Chief of Staff. And people have said, “What in the world is a chief of staff in an academic institution? It’s not a normal title.” And it isn’t. Except that I’ve had a chief of staff
in my last two posts and found that it worked very well for my style. The purpose of a chief of staff is to free up the chancellor to do only the things that a chancellor can do because they’re done ex cathedra, that is, largely representing the University externally and being the Chancellor internally, that is doing various things that I can do only because they have to be done by the Chancellor. Another way to think of Elson’s job is analogous to the Chief of Staff in the White House. If you are aware of the kinds of duties that are carried on by the Chief of Staff in the White House, maybe you’ll have some sense of what Elson will do. He keeps the balls up in the air, coordinates all the cross-cutting issues among the Vice Chancellors and the Deans — usurps none of the authority of the Vice Chancellors and the Deans — but keeps things flowing.
Let me comment on the U.S. News & World Report rankings which were out yesterday and which showed us, from one perspective, having slipped from 26th to 27th. The statisticians among you will know that that’s absolutely meaningless. But what I would like to focus on is the comparison of apples with apples. That is, look at us in relation to other public universities. And if you do, the story is a very nice one. We are ranked 4th. The top-ranked public university is Virginia; second is Michigan; third is Berkeley; fourth is UNC-Chapel Hill; and fifth is UCLA. That’s not a bad reference group to be included in, and I’m given great heart by that. Now that’s not to say that we wouldn’t like to climb from 27th to 21st to 18th or something there, and we will make every effort to do so, but it is important to note where we are with respect to the other public institutions and to be proud of where we are. Proud, especially, when you realize that our expenditures per faculty member for salary are significantly below the other institutions, many of them are behind us in the rankings, but certainly those that are ahead of us. We are on the order of $5,000 to $8,000 per full professor less in salary than the three institutions that are ahead of us.
Which raises the question, of course, of the issue that is being hotly debated right now — that is the proposed tuition increase or the tuition increase which has been enabled by the Legislature, which money would go primarily for faculty salaries. Part of it would go to hold on to students who are currently on financial aid and students who would be eligible for financial aid as a result of the increase if it were levied. Even if we were to levy the increase and give the average, distribute the average faculty salary, we would only close half the gap between us, Berkeley, Michigan, and Virginia in faculty salaries. So it’s a little sobering to recognize that fact. It is also a little disappointing to realize that the mood of the Legislature right now is such that we have to face this decision. Because it would have been so much better had the Legislature recognized the importance of funding salary increases and that the Legislature was unwilling to be forthcoming on this issue or to be as forthcoming as they might have been by giving us a general fund appropriation. It creates a political challenge as the Trustees debate how to respond. There is a risk that we will be damned if we do and damned if we don’t. With the Legislature there’s always the risk that if we don’t impose the tuition increase and raise faculty salaries, when we go back to the Legislature next year and say we have a desperate problem with salary erosion relative to peers, the Legislature will respond by saying, “Well, we gave you the opportunity last year to close the gap, to narrow the gap, and you didn’t, so obviously it is not that great a problem.” On the other hand, if we do impose the tuition increase and address that salary issue, then when we get in the Legislature next year, we run the risk that when we say we have a desperate problem with the faculty salaries, the Legislature will say, “Well, fine, you addressed the problem last year by raising tuition, so simply raise tuition again and close the gap further.” So the Trustees are really anguished about what to do about this, and I don’t know how the debate will come out. But I do want you to be aware of some of the intricacies of the debate and the discussion.
Let me just mention a couple of things that I will be focused on over the course of this year. I said that I wanted to slip into town quietly, largely unnoticed, and just listen to people for six months as I get my feet on the ground. Obviously that didn’t happen. It would have been my preference to do that, but there were some issues that simply had to be addressed. And that, by the way, reminds me to thank those of you who have acknowledged me for the way, especially that I handled the Keith Edwards matter. I very much appreciate the expressions of support that I received from — and at any rate I was not able to slip into town and to simply listen, but I do intend to keep listening and to act as little as necessary for the first few months until I get a firm sense that I understand the challenges facing us. But some of those challenges have little to with the unique character of this Institution and have more to do with the swirl of events external to us. For example, it would be unreasonable of us, I think, as we engage in strategic planning over the course of the next year — it would be unreasonable of us to plan that new programs or improvements in existing programs will be funded from the infusion of new external resources. That is, I think that we will be, that it would be prudent of us to plan only for budgetary increases from the Legislature that will cover faculty salaries, if they do, and obviously this year they didn’t, and that will cover inflationary increases in our operating budget. So if we can get salary structure rebuilt and realize inflationary increases in our budget, then I think we will have done about as much as it would be prudent for us to expect with respect to support from the Legislature. That means that as we plan for improving existing programs or as we plan for new programs, we face the challenge of doing what the self-study recognized we had not done adequately in the past, and that is develop a mechanism while prioritizing what we do so that we can reallocate resources from areas of lower priority to areas of higher priority. That is a challenge that I will embrace over the next year. And it’s a challenge that I cannot embrace and meet by myself. I have to have the support of the faculty and so I will be working particularly with the Executive Committee of the Faculty Council to tackle that challenge. That is the challenge of developing a mechanism that will enable us to prioritize what we do, and to reallocate resources from areas of lower priority to areas of higher priority. It would be irresponsible to do less than that.
There is another aspect of the external environment that I think makes that, at any rate, a prudent activity. And that is that there is a growing mood among legislators nationwide to look with far greater scrutiny at public universities and colleges and to demand performance from them in ways that have never been demanded before. You’re all aware of the articles in The Chronicle and media publications regarding attention to the issue of faculty workload, the question whether faculty teach enough. It is not just in this and the neighboring states where that issue is examined, it is in virtually every state. My wife was a member of the legislature in Massachusetts and so I saw the publications that came across her desk that were national publications directed at members of legislatures throughout the country, and I can tell you that that is a hot topic. The topic of accountability is a hot topic. And so we had best be prepared to answer legislative queries when they come. And that was one of the purposes of the report card that I issued at the University of Massachusetts and because there’s been some discussion in the press here on the report card, let me just say something about that.
First of all, it’s not a report card in the sense of grading as A, B, C, or D. And it is not a report card that rates the quality of the faculty or the quality of the teaching that takes place. It is, rather, a report card that measures the quality of our performance, primarily as an administration, in expending our resources. The idea is that you develop various indices of comparison that will enable us to compare ourselves with our peers, the top twenty public flagship campuses around the country. And having developed this set of indices of comparison, we can then look and see how we stack up against other institutions and report to the Legislature on that fact. It will have the effect of doing two things. One is enhancing our credibility because it enhances our accountability with respect to the Legislature. The other is that it will tell us where we’re doing particularly well, and I can tell you by looking at preliminary data that you will be very pleased that relative to these twenty flagship peers we are doing exceptionally well, and it will also tell us where we aren’t doing as well as we could. And so it will show us where to focus our energies at improvement. The activity of focusing our energies at improving our performance on some of these indices where we are not where we would like to be will itself enhance our credibility in the public and in the state of North Carolina and with respect to the Legislature of North Carolina. So, it also will enable us to tell a very good public relations story. It will enable us to show by comparison with our peers exactly how good this Institution is, and so I look forward to working with the Faculty Council to develop such a report card, and I think it will be, in every sense of the word, a positive activity.
There was one other thing that I wanted to say about legislators and I realize I skipped over this, and that is the question of why is it not reasonable to suppose that we will get better than inflationary increases in our operating budget and salary increases for faculty and staff. The reason is, and many of you know this far better than I and understand it theoretically better than I, that during the Reagan and Bush years there was a transfer of responsibility for social expenditures from the federal government to the state governments without an intended transfer of the revenues to support those responsibilities and so that throughout the country public universities are a shrinking portion of the state budget relative to social expenditures. So that, and I’m sure — I haven’t seen the data, but I can tell you that that has happened in this state as well. So it doesn’t matter whether the state is a prosperous one as this one is, or an impecunious one as a couple were that I served in heretofore. The truth is that we are getting a smaller portion of the state budget, and we can’t get a larger portion of the state budget until there is a significant increase in taxes which in this atmosphere is highly unlikely, or there is a transfer back to the federal government of responsibility for social programs, and that is about as unlikely, in my judgement, as is a significant tax increase. So that’s the reason that it would be imprudent to plan for anything more than inflationary increases.
Just a couple of other areas that will capture a significant part of my attention this year: One is the curriculum reform project that has been called for in the self-study, and just in general, implementing as many of the recommendations of the self-study as can be implemented and obviously those need to be prioritized and there has been some energy directed at prioritization prior to my arrival, and that’s ongoing. So that will be, will exercise a large part of my attention. Obviously that is primarily in your bailiwick but I want to be as helpful to the process as I can. Similarly something that’s called for is additional focus on teaching. It’s an absolute delight to discover that the quality of teaching here is if anything even better than when I was an undergraduate, and I remember it as being nothing but absolutely superb when I was here. I mean I did not have a bad teacher when I was here. I think I can say that truly. And I haven’t met any peers who can say that about their institutions. But at any rate, as good as it was then, it seems to me to be even better now. At least we pay more overt attention to it now — the Center for Teaching and Learning, for example, did not exist when I was here. But I would like to begin the process of bringing teaching and research together self consciously in ways that I think we need to do to address this issue from without, that there’s somehow a tradeoff between teaching and research. There absolutely is not a tradeoff — I’ve said that time and again. But I think we need to be reflective and self conscious about making efforts to demonstrate through what we say and what we do that those two are complementary, not direct tradeoffs, one for the other.
Another area of focus of mine which again comes from the self-study will be the intellectual climate on campus, particularly among our undergraduate students. I regard the problem of excessive use of alcohol on campus as being a part of that the issue of the intellectual atmosphere, the intellectual climate on campus, and again, I look forward to working with the Faculty Council and the faculty in general on addressing the issue of enhancing the intellectual climate on campus. Now that’s all I had today in mind to say. I would be delighted to address any questions or comments. Please.
Professor E. Willis Brooks (History): Chancellor Hooker, I ask your indulgence in order to make a comment. Today is International Literacy Day, as I suspect everyone here knows [chuckles], a perfect day for a faculty member in International Studies to remind that a global problem also is a local one. For three of the last four years I have spoken at this opening meeting of Faculty Council about Project Literacy, a student-run, campuswide-based organization trying to fulfill its name among employees at this University and in the local community. I noted Chancellor Hardin’s initiative of May 1992 to encourage UNC employees to take courses, up to three hours per week. I don’t know the number who take regular courses, but in the past academic year, more than 60 employees work in classrooms on campus toward GED diploma and at lower levels, with the help of Durham Tech, Orange County Literacy Council, and undergraduates from Project Literacy. We may rejoice that in fact 10 employees earned their GEDs this past spring. But many more need help on our campus and in our community. In fact the Orange County Literacy Council estimates that almost 10,000 adults in Orange County, or one in ten, cannot read or write well enough to fill out a job application. When I have made my statements, I have hoped for UNC faculty and staff involvement in Project Literacy. There has been none. Two articles have appeared in the past in the University Alumni Report about this administrative and student effort to help student-employees improve their reading skills; indeed, one should even say, improve their career prospects. So to show appreciation of the importance of this effort…and still no response from the faculty. I wish to reaffirm the challenge is still open to volunteerism. I invite fellow faculty to join me, to dedicate an hour, or two, a week, after brief training, and take this important outreach a few steps from their offices and to help those called by one author, the “thrown away.” You can begin this rewarding work for which we teachers have the skills to have a serious impact, by me, or more directly, Ken Manwaring, Director of Training. His telephone number, George, is 2-2550. Thank you. Chancellor Hooker: Thank you. Well said. That reminds me. One of the problems that I remember reading in the Gazette before I arrived about the Project Literacy and the 10 graduates that you referred to, and the moving account of one of them, the difficulty of sticking with the program. And I have discovered since I’ve been studying the issue of the housekeepers and their grievances, pay, and job promotion prospects, and so forth, I’ve discovered the problem many of our housekeepers have literacy skills that are deficient, that impede their ability to get other jobs, higher paying jobs. And one of the problems associated with our simply providing courses for them is that because their wages are so low, they work two jobs. Some of them, in fact, work three jobs, and that leaves virtually no time to take literacy courses. So I’m struggling with the question couldn’t we somehow carve out part of their time here to enable the literacy courses, but I’m very supportive of what you advocate and am moved by your entreaty. Thank you.
Professor Harry Gooder (Microbiology & Immunology): On a personal note I’d like to welcome you to the campus and your first Faculty Council meeting. I hope you won’t find us as a silent body. And in that vein I’d like to bring up one topic you didn’t mention, which I think is equally as important in recruiting and retaining faculty as their salaries. And that is the support of graduate education. Nearly everything you mentioned related primarily to undergraduate education. Now one has to realize that over the last twenty-five years there’s been little support by the Legislature for our graduate programs. In many departments the faculty arrange the salaries we pay as research assistants. We raise all the money to buy their equipment, their supplies. We use them as teaching assistants. The state students benefit from their presence. And yet this is hardly ever discussed by our Trustees or by the Board of Governors. And I think if we only get at an increase in salary monies and inflationary increases in our budget, we will still be very deficient in maintaining a first-class university. Chancellor Hooker: There’s no doubt that you’re right, Harry. The Board of Trustees — I can’t speak to the Board of Governors because I haven’t been with them long enough — but the Board of Trustees is certainly aware of the problem. And the Board of Trustees has, some of them have lobbied in Raleigh for more labors, but graduate education, as you well know, is difficult to sell to the Legislature. The focus is on undergraduate education. That raises the question, are we going to have to — this is one of the areas that I was talking about before — are we going to have to reallocate internally to help ourselves, and that was one of the suggestions that I made actually back in May when I started communicating with Dick McCormick. And I said why don’t we simply cut the complement of graduate students in each department and take the money and raise the stipends, and found out that that has already been done. And some departments are at the point where if they sink any lower, you really don’t have a viable graduate program. So it is an acute problem. The Trustees are aware of it. I’m aware of it. It is not an easy problem to solve. And, again, it goes to the issue that I was discussing of internal reallocation.
Professor Joy Kasson (American Studies): I’m Joy Kasson in the American Studies program, and I also want to welcome you and to say how pleased I am to hear you talk about the improvement of teaching as one of your high priorities. And I think all of us agree that salary is an important part of that. But I also wanted to mention some of the other factors that are very important for us as teachers here that interfere with our ability to do our teaching as well as we could. And that includes the logistical support, the problem of adequate xerox copies, xerox machines that break down, supplies and equipment, faculty members who aren’t able to make long distance calls from their office or who must use their own personal money if they want computers in their office, E-mail that’s so badly overloaded. I think everybody in this room who uses E-mail probably knows that it’s very difficult to get into your E-mail, let alone use it effectively for teaching as we all might. So I want to just applaud your interest in these matters and remind you that it’s more than — it certainly is our salaries, that’s very important to all of us –, but there are many other factors that go into this. Chancellor Hooker: Thanks for mentioning the electronic support of teaching and research. That is an area where we, like in the area of graduate studies, are significantly behind the average of our 20 flagship public peers. And we’re going to have to make substantial investments in the coming decade in that area. The reason that it is so difficult to get an E-mail account, or to get into E-mail, is because we have inadequate hardware, inadequate networking, and it’s going to take a very large investment to bring us up to a minimal level of adequacy. Again, it goes to the issue where do we get the funds. And it goes to the question how do we internally reallocate. But you’re absolutely right. Thank you.
Professor Miles Fletcher (History): I’m Miles Fletcher in the Department of History, and I also appreciate your strong words of support of teaching, and I’d like to raise a topic that relates to good teaching on campus. I co-authored a letter to you last week that raised the issue of the condition of classrooms on campus, particularly those available and used by the faculty in Arts and Sciences. And in that letter we said that we would raise the issue today, and we want to invite your response. For the benefit of those present who didn’t see that letter, I’d like to very concisely summarize four points that we made. First of all, many classrooms used by College faculty are simply inadequately equipped. Second, many of these classrooms are literally in disrepair. Third, there are not enough classrooms. Enrollment has grown over the past few decades. Classrooms have actually gone out of use for other purposes, and hence many classrooms are overcrowded. Finally, many classrooms need upgrading to allow use of computers and the use of other kinds of materials. So we invite your response. Chancellor Hooker: Okay. One of the first things I did when I got back this summer was visit all of my old classrooms, places that I had courses [laughter]. It looks like they’ve received regular attention since then [laughter], except that some of them had been converted to other purposes, offices and lounges and so forth. I’m probably going to begin to sound like a broken record, and a very unwelcome broken record, but the problem that you have identified is real. I’m aware of it. It goes to the issue of how do we finance the repair of our facilities. Now with respect to facilities repair, we did get an appropriation from the Legislature this year, and we can probably do a better job without having to reallocate internally repairing facilities. I have not seen priority ranking of what we intend to. But I can tell you my experience has been that unless somebody like yourself makes noise, classrooms probably will be neglected. Classrooms don’t have a lot of advocates. So thank you. And I did receive your letter, and I look forward to working with you on that issue. Professor Jane Brown: I think you have a whole roomful of advocates [laughter]. Chancellor Hooker: Everything is a tradeoff. The question is what will we give up to refurbish the classrooms.
Professor Carl Bose (Pediatrics, Medicine): You mentioned in several contexts on several occasions today the issue of selling ourselves. The Board of Trustees must sell themselves to the Legislature. And it really is the Legislature that’s the deciding body. But if this is a democratic government, I suppose they represent the will of the people. And it seems to me that we do a lot of good here and do a lot of things that much of the public is unaware of. And I wonder if there should be a more organized approach to selling the people, the public relations with our public. Can you comment on that? Chancellor Hooker: Yeah, I can see Margaret and Vicky smiling. Apparently we have about twenty people on campus who either as their direct responsibility or an important indirect responsibility, deal with the public in portraying us, doing public relations, public information, press relations, press information. And apparently this group had never been collected together before I got here. Well I’ve met with them twice now. And we began yesterday meeting twice monthly, and right now we’re just in the process of getting to know each other, sharing information. What will come from this eventually within the next three months will be a strategic plan for communications with our external publics, which is the citizens of North Carolina and their elected representatives, the Legislature primarily. We have really done a wretched job of portraying — the fourth best public university in the country; we have a lot of good things to tell, and all you can about us in the press is when we stub our toe. So — I shouldn’t say that because that’s unfair to the people who have been responsible for getting good stories in the press. It is not all that you read about us. There have been a lot of good stories. Unfortunately, you tend you remember the ones that were embarrassing. But that having been said, we still have not done a concerted job, marshalled our collective efforts. And we will.
Professor Steve Bayne (Dentistry): Welcome home. Chancellor Hooker: Thank you, it’s nice to be here. [laughter] Professor Bayne: I know all my colleagues are enumerating the many problems we’ve been struggling with and trying to resolve the past few years or whatever, but I just sort of wanted to express to you on behalf of the faculty the fact that all of us are willing to help, to volunteer our time, to come up with creative solutions and whatever. We’re not just delivering these to your doorstep and giving you twenty-four hours to respond. Chancellor Hooker: Thank you for that comment. And that seems like a great place to stop the question and answer period. [laughter] But let me say that I have discovered that. I really have. I am accustomed in the past the honeymoon for the Chancellor was more like an overnight affair [laughter]. This one has lasted far longer than I expected it, and it’s really marvelous. And I have found that attitude. And I think I mentioned this in a publication awhile back. In spite of all of our problems, I really find a wonderful can-do attitude of spirit and enthusiasm and optimism here, which is refreshing. Having come from the Northeast corridor where there’s nothing but doom and gloom. And North Carolina is prosperous. And we’re facing a significant budget surplus right now in the state, and I have to believe that eventually some of that is going to flow to us as legislative largesse. [a few chuckles] But we have to position ourselves to have the Legislature love us and the citizens of the state love us, and that’s the job of the Chancellor. It’ll take a little while to do it, but I hope not too long.
Presentation of Hettleman Awards: Chancellor Hooker
Let me turn now to one of the felicitous duties associated with this job I’m told, something that I didn’t have when I was an undergraduate here. This is the Hettleman Awards. Each year we are privileged to confer the Phillip and Ruth Hettleman Awards for outstanding scholarly and/or artistic achievement by young faculty. In 1986 this award was instituted, established the late Phillip Hettleman, UNC alumnus and resident of New York State. Phillip and Ruth Hettleman’s vision and generosity are translated via these awards into a tangible and visible benefit for outstanding young faculty who themselves symbolize the aspirations and excellence of the entire faculty in advancing the frontiers of knowledge and understanding across a broad range of disciplines. I am honored to announce the Award winners, and I’ll ask you please to come up, because there is something tangible for this award, which is $5000, until we take out the taxes; then it’s about $3500. [laughter]
Timothy J. Bralower, Department of Geology [applause]
Fellow alumnus James L. Leloudis, Department of History [applause]
Kenneth J. Lohmann, Department of Biology [applause]
Chancellor Hooker: Thank you very much.
Chair of the Faculty Jane D. Brown
I invite you all to come down and sit down. The Council members are supposed to sit in the first three rows. Your name tags are up here. An artificial device to get you to sit up front. [laughter] It worked! Chancellor Hooker: Let me say one thing. You will notice during the course of this meeting I will put my foot up in the chair. [laughter] It’s not because I’m disrespectful of you or disrespectful of the furniture. It’s because I have an arthritic hip and I’ll be writhing in agony if I don’t elevate my leg. [laughter] Professor Brown: I thought it was an endearing characteristic. [laughter]
Does everybody have a chair? There are more chairs over here. Pete, you’re up here in the corner right here. Pete Andrews. [unidentified woman]: Not to embarrass you or anything. Professor Andrews: Not that way.
I’m Jane Brown. I’m Chair of the Faculty. I’m beginning my second term, my second year of my first term. I have another year to go. I’m a little less nervous than I was this time last year. And I’m delighted to see you all here. I’m also thrilled that we have a new Chancellor today, and we really appreciate your candidness with us today. We appreciate your being here. We look forward to many more meetings. And we’ll try our darndest to make them as productive as possible. We also want to welcome Elson Floyd back home. We’re happy to have you here as well. Thank you. Vice Chancellor Floyd: Thank you very much. Professor Brown: I also want to recognize Heather Savitz, who is our liaison with Student Government. We’re happy to have you here. Do you want to stand up? And Rachel Windham, are you still here? Rachel Windham, the Chair of the Employee Forum. Thank you. Anybody else who would like to be introduced? [laughter] Great, well thank you all for being here. And the other people I would like to introduce are the new members of the Council. And last year I made you all do something bizarre, like tell each other a new, a secret talent that you all had. This year I’ll be a little more subtle. And all you have to do this year is do a Quaker Meeting process, where you turn to the person on your right and you turn to the person on your left and then you turn behind you, and introduce yourself to three people. And you all may participate in this activity. [laughter] So would you do that at this point? [laughter] [introductions] Thank you. Now that’s the first act of participation. Thank you. I have also organized the Council members in terms of their divisions. You are elected to represent your division. You represent about, each one of you represents about twenty-five members of the faculty. We are a body of about 90 people. We are representing 2200 faculty. The division doesn’t quite work there. But it’s something like a ratio of 1:25. That’s at least what the Code says we should be working to. So what I’d like you to do is also see who you’re sitting next to, because those are the other people in your division, who are representing your division. Laurie, what’s the problem?
Professor Laurie McNeil (Physics & Astronomy): I was just saying now you have told us what the system was; everyone was wondering. [laughter] Professor Brown: Oh, I maybe should have had you guess who those people are. So. What I’d like to do, what I’m going to do, is now give you a pep talk about being a Council member, and tell you a little bit more about what it means to be a Council member. I’ve been trying to figure this out during the first year of my term. And it’s a bit confusing sometimes. And so what I’d first like to say is if you are a new Council member or if you are a confused returning Council member [laughter], I would appreciate your letting me know that, or you can speak with George Lensing, he’s been around a long time, about this, too. Or someone else in your division. Let’s talk about it. If it’s not making sense to you, let’s figure out how to make it make sense. Now what I also had you to do was to talk about what you thought the responsibilities of your membership on Faculty Council were. Well I’m going to ponder those some more. They were very fascinating. [laughter] And, we formed a subcommittee this summer, actually, to look into how to make Council relevant to the issues of the day. We started by looking at the standing committees. We have 22 standing committees that report to Faculty Council. You’ll see them listed on one of those handouts you picked up as you came in. If you could look at this, please. This is, traditionally, the main business of the Council — is hearing these standing committee reports. What we did over the summer is to look at those, and we also did the first ever orientation session for Faculty Council members a couple of weeks ago. What we began to see is that there’s not very much, it’s not very simpatico with what the issues of the day are. Many of these committees seem to be historical artifacts that may no longer need to exist. So what I am happy to report is that Joe Ferrell and the University Government Committee has said that if we charge them with taking a look at the Code and taking a look at our committee structure, they will do that. They will start taking a really hard look, a systematic look, of how we are organized and whether this is the most productive way to be organized. So I appreciate that. And the Executive Committee of Faculty Council will be looking into how to organize that and structure that. And I would appreciate any input from you about how you think that might proceed. Someone already suggested to me that it might not even be in our purview to do that, and that we’ll have to look at the Code to see how we could even charge the University Government Committee to do that. So we’ll be working on that.
The other thing I have done here is, in this schedule, to begin to say, what are our important issues. Now the Chancellor has listed some that are here. There are some he’s also listed that aren’t here, and we’ll have to be looking at how to integrate those here. But in the left-hand column what we’ve done is to say these are tentative special topics that we think the Faculty Council should be addressing in the coming year. What I’ve tried to do also is to line them up with standing committees that may have something relevant to say about those topics. What I’m asking the standing committees to do is to look at how they might contribute to these conversations. Before we fully restructure ourselves, this is the body, and this is basically the format we have to deal with. So what I’m interested in is in this coming year to be as innovative as we possibly can be in addressing what we really need to address here. And making these two hours you have so generously devoted on a Friday afternoon as productive as possible. I’ve already been with the Chancellor enough to know that he, his leg comes up at about half an hour into a meeting [laughter]. So that’s about it. If we haven’t done something important enough for him to be here, I don’t think he should be here either. And so I think that we need to make this work for us, and for the Chancellor, and for the faculty, whom we represent. So that’s what I’m going to be looking at this year. How can we really do this?
The first topic we’re going to take up is going to be an especially sensitive one and a difficult one, I think. And it is faculty salary distribution. For two years we’ve had committees looking into this question. Over the summer we had a subcommittee come up, draft some special principles and ideas about how salaries should distributed more fairly and equitably. If we get the salary money that is proposed at this point, this is a perfect time to be saying, “How do we want the salary monies distributed in a way that works? In a fair way. In a way that addresses compression problems, as well as how to retain our stars.” That’s what we’re going to be talking about in October. And what I’ll try to do is to structure that in a way so that we really can look at these proposals and come up with a set of guidelines that’s going to work for us. The proposal will be distributed beforehand so you’ll have time to look at it, and have time to talk about it with your colleagues. And that’s what I’m going to ask you to do. This is going to be a crucial issue. And what I hope is that we can come to some consensus about this. And really have a set of guidelines that will work, now, this year. If you look over the rest of these issues, these are important issues. We’ve already talked about the future of the Graduate School, research, graduate students — how do they fit in here, what are we going to do to support them? Our intellectual climate questions and revitalizing Council. We have appointed two task forces that expect to be ready to report in January about diversity issues. Soyini Madison’s Committee on Black Faculty is taking on the difficult task of asking the question, “Where do we go with affirmative action?” Then we’ve begun to appoint a subcommittee of the Executive Committee to take on teaching issues, take on issues of teaching — what do you call it, Lolly? FIT – Faculty Initiative on Teaching. Where we as a faculty will take on these issues they people already raised today. I was one of those people who got a classroom — I teach journalism and mass communication — I got a classroom this year where I could not show a video. For me to show a video this year I had to bring my own VCR from home, that’s now in the classroom. I’m really upset. [chuckles] So we need to handle this. That’s basic. That’s very basic.
And finally, we’re going to be revising the general education curriculum. This comes right out of the SACS reaccreditation report. And we need to be aware of how that’s occurring. And we need to be involved in that. And finally, I want to talk about public service, and how we put all these pieces together. We have a Public Service Roundtable that’s been taking the initiative on this, and we need to be talking about how does public service integrate with research and teaching. How are we really going to do that. And then other things will come up, as they always do. And we will want to be talking about them here. So we will be looking about how that can happen.
Over on the right-hand corner you will see “report due dates.” They come a month earlier. That’s from the standing committees. They come a month earlier than the Council meeting. The structure is — it takes about a month to get on the agenda. So you need to be thinking ahead. If you have issues you want to get on the agenda, let us know as soon as possible so we can schedule them in, and we’ll work with you to figure out how to do that. The Agenda Committee meets about the same time these reports are due, and we structure the meeting. So we’d like to hear from you what you need to have on the agenda. Okay?
There’s also the Executive Committee, and I’d like to introduce them. They’re all sitting up here in a cluster. We meet twice a month. We meet once a month by ourselves and another time that month with four or five key Vice Chancellors. They are: Craig Calhoun, Sue Estroff, Joseph Flora, Lolly Gasaway, Pete Andrews, Harry Gooder, Carol Jenkins, Jim Peacock, Pamela Conover, Paul Farel, Carl Bose, Lillie Searles, George Lensing, and myself. So this is the Executive Committee. I will send out a roster to you. I’m sorry that I don’t have it done today, and then you’ll know who they are. These are people you can call, complain to, bring issues to, and something will happen. [laughter]
And finally, let’s see, oh, one other responsibility that I’m going to ask you to agree to. Every year I have another responsibility, which is to encourage faculty to participate in academic processions. When we dress up and look like academics and honor the University. So, I would like you all, as members of the Faculty Council, to take this on as a personal responsibility, that you will participate in these academic processions. There are three a year. I’d say if you do two out of three, that’s fine. Okay? And the first one I want to invite you to is the installation of our eighth Chancellor, Michael Hooker, which will occur on October 12th, University Day. This will be a special occasion. It’s also going to be festive, and we get fed afterwards as well. So. I would encourage you all to participate in this. It’ll be fun. And we invited faculty from a number of other campuses around the country, actually, to be here. So I’d ask you to be their hosts to these other faculty. To welcome them and to be here and to represent your colleagues at this important occasion. I won’t ask for public commitment. I will assume it. [chuckles] So I’ll look forward to seeing you there. And in order to know how much food we need to have at the picnic, there will be a sign-up sheet in your offices for you to sign up. And you’ll get a chair, too. Is there anything else you’d like to say to me at this point?
Steve, welcome back. We miss you already. But you’re here. Professor Bayne: You started to do something last year that I thought was very helpful, and that is, the Executive Committee makes a major effort, a major commitment, and we all appreciate that. But we don’t know a lot of times what they’re working on. At the end of last year we had a couple of notices to Faculty Council or General Faculty that listed what the items were that the Executive Committee of the Faculty was dealing with, so we could have direct input in a timely fashion. If you could keep that up, it would be great. Because otherwise we just don’t know where they are. Professor Brown: That’s a good idea. We’ll do that. Professor Bayne: Thanks, Jane. Professor Brown: Yes, thank you. Great. Anything else? Ah, Lolly remembers. One of the things we’re going to do, especially when we get extended E-mail access, we will set up a listserv so that we can be communicating with each other in between these meetings as well. And so we will — unfortunately, our computers in the Council office are not ready to do that yet, and as soon as we, we’re going to ask the Chancellor for money to do that — [laughter] — and we will then get into the electronic age of communication. Thank you. Anything else? Very great. I’d like to introduce George Lensing, who is our Secretary, and who keeps us on the road here.
Secretary of the Faculty George S. Lensing
Thank you. I’ll be very brief. I, too, would like to welcome all the Faculty Council members back this year, and especially the one-third of you who are new this year. A week or two ago we had a special session for you, and I think almost all of you appeared. And we asked each chair, outgoing/incoming chair, of a standing committee, to make a brief presentation. Some were brief. Some were a little longer. But we spent a long afternoon sort of, with orientation to the work of the Faculty Council. And so I’m very glad that the new members of the Council can now put a name with a face in terms of the leaders of these various committees. Like Jane I, too, am concerned with trying to make our two hours here on Friday afternoons the most productive possible. And we are beginning the practice this year of saying to the various standing committees that they need not formally bring their reports before this body just for the sake of bringing it forth each year. We will circulate all of the annual reports, all of you will be given an opportunity here to raise any questions about those reports you may wish, but we’re not necessarily going to institutionalize a discussion of the content of those reports in the interest of trying to save that time for a more fruitful discussion. Jane mentioned the Agenda Committee. And I want to just return to that briefly. This is a committee that meets two or three weeks in advance of our meetings here to plan the agenda of the meetings. And I’d like to begin by just identifying those individuals, most of them are here, I think, and asking them to stand so that you can put a face with a name here also: Pete Andrews, Pamela Conover, Hillel Gitelman, Laurie McNeil, Maria Salgado, and Jane Brown, George Lensing, and Michael Hooker. So if there’s any kind of an issue whatsoever that you think this Council needs to be addressing, you can contact any one of us and we will be glad to put that on the agenda as a preliminary process of getting it here to you.
I’m happy to report that the offices of faculty government have a new suite of offices. We’ve moved from Bynum to the second floor of Carr Building. Unfortunately, you’ve got to enter from the parking lot on the south side. You just go up those steps and then another flight of steps inside and open the door. You will be in the offices of faculty government. And Jane Brown now has an office. The first time that the Chair of the Faculty actually has a small little office of her own. And I, too, would like to repeat that we could use some computers on the second floor of Carr Building. I’d like to introduce David Thompson who is at his desk there every day on the second floor of Carr. Rosemary Munsat, who many of you know, is not able to be here today. And everyone knows, David and Rosemary are the ones who really run the faculty government offices.
Let me just remind you again very quickly that as you come to these meetings we ask you to sign in over here at the table. If you anticipate that you cannot be present at for one of the meetings, will you please phone in to our office, 2-2146/2-2147. Soon I hope you could E-mail us in that information. And let us know and you are given an excused cut. If you are absent without having done that, you have an unexcused cut, and the Code actually says if there are two unexcused cuts in succession, your name can be expunged from the list of the Faculty Council. I realize it’s risk for me to say that [laughter] on a Friday afternoon. We’ve already gone on long enough. It is very important. Some of you began doing this this afternoon. It’s very important for you when you have comments to make here to stand and first give us your name and the department or school that you’re from. The proceedings, as you can see, are tape recorded here. We make a transcript of the proceedings here. They are put on the University INFO line so that if you wish to consult anything that came up in the discussions here, it’s s word-for-word transcript, and I work from that in writing the shorter summary that is distributed to all the faculty. But it’s very frustrating sometimes when we don’t know who you are as the speaker. So please in a loud, clear voice, and David would like for them to say everything in a loud, clear voice, right? But especially your name and the school that you’re from. So once again, thank you, and welcome to the Faculty Council.
Mr. J. Calvin Cunningham III, Student Body President
Professor Brown: Calvin, there you are. Today is a day of speechmaking. It won’t always be this way. But we have the privilege of hearing from Calvin Cunningham, President of Student Government. Did I say that right? You want to say Student Body President? Mr. Cunningham. Right. Professor Brown: Thank you very much. Mr. Cunningham: Thank you.
Professor Lensing, Professor Brown, Chancellor Hooker, and members of the Faculty Council, I appreciate the opportunity to come before you today and speak. I have a handful of issues that I’d like to touch on, three of which very briefly, two of which I’d like to spend a little bit more time on. So I’ll give you these comments probably in the same way that I’d like to run this semester. I’ll tell you what I’m going to say, say it, and then tell you what I just said. I’d like to mention the Institution’s self-study report, particularly as it relates to curriculum reform. I’d like to mention our undergraduate honor court, which is charged with upholding standards of honor here. I’d like to mention accessed information technology. I’d also like to cover two more substantive issues at this point, and that is, one, a new updated alcohol policy, which I’m going to introduce to you and which should be a subject for public discussion over the next couple of weeks. And I’d also like to mention our most recent, most contentious, tuition discussions. First of all, it’s my hope, and the Chancellor mentioned this, and I was encouraged Professor Brown mentioned it as well, that over the course of this next year, we can open discussions for the first time in fifteen years about the status of our General Education curriculum. That is with an eye on looking at how it’s gotten to where it’s gotten, how we can shape it and craft it, make sure that it’s achieving the objectives that we asked it to achieve. I believe that, at least in my understanding, the curriculum has evolved and gotten to the position that it’s in now in large part piecemeal, a little addition here and a little addition there. So I’ve read this document very closely, it’s dense at times, very helpful at times, and it encourages the community to look at the curriculum, and I’d like to offer student encouragement and working with the faculty in evaluating, again, how we got to where we are, whether we can shape that for the better.
Another point, the honor court, something that I’d like to return to over the course of this next semester. It’s my firm belief that we have a system that works, but we have a lot of people who don’t have faith in that system. And I’d like to open discussions as to why. I have to appoint all the members of the undergraduate court as Student Body President. They have to be approved by the Student Congress, which, incidentally, if you think this meeting goes a long time, that one is just terrible. I appoint those people, and I’m not involved in their training, I’m not involved in their selection. The Court does that. It’s a self-perpetuating system. And so my question to them is do you truly believe that you are holding this responsibility and that you’re doing the right things with it? Do you have faith, the members of Court have faith, that you’re upholding honor and doing the right thing and making the right decisions? And they all say, yes. Of course they do, but they very much believe in the responsibility that they uphold. And so I would like to open dialogue with the faculty and also with the graduate students and professional students that are involved in the classroom, about what it is with this system that’s broken down, so that we can charge it again, so it’ll work, so questions will cease to arise in regards to whether this is a system that works. Because I believe that it works, and the members that Student Government, the student members that make the system work truly have faith that it does.
A third topic, which I’ll be returning to in October is an issue of information technology. That is, the state just invested very heavily in the information superhighway, connecting our libraries all across the UNC system. And one thing that students find is are the faculty using this, is this a way that we can enhance our education, the quality of our education? And I think by and large the answer to that is yes. I mean that’s the trend, that’s where we’re going to be in 20 years, and we’re going to be doing a lot more with information technologies. But right now students don’t have the entrance ramps to this information superhighway. Just this last week for the first time we now have access to 24-hour computer facilities in the undergraduate library]. Putting that information technology into the students’ hands through the residence halls and through other computer labs and the faculty’s employment of that information technology are, I think, that’s the discussion that I’d like to open. We do have very limited resources. It’s a question of how we prioritize those resources, much as the Chancellor says. And I think that it’s time that we look 20 years down the road. I read, I guess, an editorial or a comment in The Daily Tar Heel just a few days ago about 8000 new E-mail accounts which opened on the system right at the beginning of the year, and some encouragement that faculty not use E-mail to transmit coursework and to communicate with students. But I don’t think that’s correct. True, we have a system right now that has trouble handling all the load that’s on it. But the answer is not to avoid the technology. The answer is to embrace the technology, prioritize the resources, to make it work for us.
Now, a fourth topic which is going to be particularly timely today. I see that the photocopying machine must still be running. I’m bringing to you and introducing for discussion, not at this meeting, but over the course of the next few weeks, a new alcohol policy which the students have been involved with, a handful of administrators, in rewriting over the course of this summer. Now this goes straight to the heart of the question of intellectual climate, in my mind, on this campus. And I think students by and large reacted very adversely to some of the comments made in this document last spring about intellectual climate and what we could do to stimulate intellectual climate. Now this policy represents an updating of a 1986 policy that right now still says you can drink if you’re 18. So, in part what the policy does is University policy in conformity with state law and what our practice has been. But it introduces two novel ideas. It’s my desire that the faculty can give a constructive feedback on exactly what it is about intellectual climate and the role that alcohol plays that we can do through a policy. What is it that we can do? And so let me — first of all, students have a very limited access to resources. We have student fee money that we allocate through Student Congress. Graduate and Professional Student Federation Senate has access to student fee money. That money, in my opinion, is for the purpose of programming intellectual programming, attracting speakers, bringing them to this campus. And it’s not for the purposes of purchasing alcohol. Now that is currently the practice. But I don’t think that we should do that anymore. And I think that student fee money that we employ in student government should be used to stimulate intellectual climate. It’s my desire, I campaigned on prioritizing that money to enhance intellectual environment, and now I’m recommending that that’s exactly what the money be used for. The second thing that’s novel about this policy — This is an institution, has tremendous resources with respect to how we educate people. We have a tremendous Center for Alcohol Studies. And yet that information is not transferred to students on this very campus about alcohol. And so what we desire to do is to not have a law-and-order policy that cracks down on everybody that opens a beer on the campus, but which educates people in violation of the policy about the adverse effects of alcohol. And I’ve recommended that we do that through the Student Health, and develop a program through Student Health whereby students can be referred to an educational program. And I think a combination of those two recommendations, we can implement a new policy that will do something to address alcohol and its role in the intellectual climate. Now the format of that discussion — I’d like to take a couple of weeks. The policy, hopefully, the old policy and the new policy, should hopefully be here before the end of this meeting, and we’ll put them on the chair. This is the first time that the policy has been introduced to the public for discussion. It was my desire that we introduce it for public debate, for campus debate, because it gives the faculty an opportunity to go back to this document and say, “What is it about intellectual climate and the role that alcohol plays in that that is particularly acute?” We would like an articulation. Students, I think, would like an articulation of those points. So, I’m inviting comment from the faculty and from the student community and other constituencies, and then we’ll wrap that document up and send it on its way and make it official. So, I introduce that to you today and hope that we can have some good constructive public discussion about it.
Now, finally, I’d like to mention the issue of this tuition debate because the Chancellor said that trustees are anguished. I suggest that that might be a euphemism for the position I’m in. I’m not just anguished, I’m probably embattled, because if you’ve seen comments, I’m probably the lone student standing up right now saying I think faculty’s needs are critical, I think that the Library’s needs are critical, and that in the grand scheme of balancing costs and benefits that we should stand an adjustment. Now we had yesterday at the Board meeting, at which I serve as an ex officio member, a great deal of discussion. So I’d like to say exactly what the student interest in this tuition debate is. And, in a sense, draw a line in the sand, if you will, about what I think it’s going to take to make what is a truly just a shoddy piece of legislation something strong, implementable, and for the better. Now first of all, and this goes back to the comment that Professor Gooder just made, about graduate students. Their culture is completely different from the culture in which I live and which undergraduates live. And this is not a priority for them at all. Their stipends have not budged in ten years, they do not have access to health insurance that’s paid for by the state, and truly are working overtime to make ends meet. Now I read this legislation, and I think President Spangler has indicated this legislation should be read, that we can exempt populations. And so the first line I’d like to draw is that I do not think that this tuition should be applied to graduate students and professional students at all. [applause] Thank you. I’m sure if the graduate students were here, they would be overjoyed.
Now the second critical piece of the puzzle in my mind and one that, my cabinet of about 35 or 40 folks discussed this, and they support the concept that in the balance of the costs and the benefits we could use a tuition adjustment. Their concern, and my concern, and I think every undergraduate’s concern, is that we put the resources, we must earmark 35% for financial aid. Now I understand that that covers need in the system now. But it doesn’t do anything to address new need that will arise as a result of implementing this policy. And so the second suggestion that I have, the second line that I’m drawing, is that we don’t need 35% in financial aid, we need 40%. And I think at a minimum that will accommodate for new need coming on line as a result. Now, that’s obviously slowing chipping away at the faculty salary increase that’s supposed to be the bulk of this plan. It’s my belief that, though, that the students’ pocketbooks have got to be the first and foremost concern with respect to how we pull this off. The faculty need is critical. I’ve been intensely frustrated over the last two years in which I have joined with Professor Peacock and other members of the faculty in Raleigh trying to get those competitive faculty salary increases. And it just hasn’t happened. Over the last ten years I think we’ve seen a slow erosion of the faculty salary base. So I really believe that the Institution’s quality is contingent on getting some of these resources to bolster the faculty base and to bolster the libraries, which, yesterday I was shocked to hear that we had cancelled 4400 periodicals in the last ten years in order to keep our library rankings up, so that we can continue to buy books. So it’s my hope that we can direct the money to the faculty, and the argument has always been to get faculty into the first quintile against peer institutions. I think that’s exactly where the money should go, to address faculty who are not competitive relative to the peers, and they’re competitive in their departments, and that we can put faculty into the first quintile of the AAUP rankings, and have competitive faculty salaries here at this Institution. Ultimately, this is the Legislature’s responsibility. It is. And it’s been frustrating that they have not produced. And so I don’t think that this is good financing of faculty, and it’s not good financing of the libraries, but I’m frustrated personally, with having been over there and tried to articulate our case. And I think others are as well. And the students that I speak to are willing to do the sort of balance between the cost and the benefits that’s necessary, and that is, raising tuition, not this semester and not next semester, but phased in over time, so that we can maximize the sort of benefits to the faculty salary base without hurting students. We’ve got to budget for it. And I think that it’s a realistic proposal. I think it’s a pragmatic near-term solution, but it’s never going to be a substitute for the type of advocacy that we’ve got to do over in Raleigh, to the Legislature that supplies our money in the first place. So I appreciate you listening to my comments on the tuition issue, and the comments on the other issues, and hope that we can have some constructive discussion. Let me also add that I think that, while it’s been said that the tuition debate has been divisive, I think it has, but it’s allowed us an opportunity to look at ourselves as an Institution, and it’s allowed ourselves to assess some of our critical needs, and to that extent, I think it’s been a healthy debate and will continue to be a healthy debate. I hope that we can have a satisfactory resolution of the thing and I probably wish that more than anybody. [chuckles] I appreciate your giving me the opportunity to speak to you today. I appreciate Professor Brown for putting me on the agenda. I’d be happy to answer any questions that you have. If not, I look forward to having a very, very constructive year working with the faculty.
Professor Craig Calhoun (Sociology; Interim Dean of the Graduate School): I’m extremely impressed by your courageous leadership, and I hope the courage is rewarded with something other than flying bullets, Calvin. I want to ask why you group together graduate and professional students. Something that disturbed me a good deal in the discussion at the Board of Trustees meeting was the failure to make a clear distinction between graduate and professional students, and I think with regard to finances, with regard to other aspects of funding, their educations, Ph.D. and M.A. students are in very different situations from M.D., J.D., DD.S., M.B.A., and D.Pharm, Pharm.D.(?) students. And really there isn’t the same compelling reason to exempt those students in the professional degree programs that there is to exempt graduate students, including those graduate students in professional schools. Mr. Cunningham: Well, let me say first of all the Graduate and Professional Student Federation has been one of those bugs in my ear over the course of the last few weeks. It has particularly helped me understand exactly what the situation is for graduate assistants, research assistants, and teaching assistants, which is at the heart of exactly what I think needs to be addressed with an exemption from this policy, so I know that the legislation differentiates those professional degree programs, and that’s not exactly what I intended to be speaking to. I intended to be speaking to particularly the needs of Teaching Assistants, RAs, and GAs. Professor Calhoun: Those are, generally speaking, graduate students and not professional students. Mr. Cunningham: I’m continuing to learn, too. Thank you. I appreciate it. Please.
Professor Paul Farel (Physiology): I think that, I attended the Board of Trustees meeting yesterday and listened to Chancellor Hooker and your talk today. And I’m struck how limited all of our knowledge is about the vastness of the University. That some Ph.D. students, particularly those in Health Affairs, have their stipends paid by University, by research grants from the federal government, training grants. And so they’re not in the same position as are, say, graduate students in English, I would suppose. So I wouldn’t even want to clump all Ph.D. students together. Also I’d like to mention the fact that the, I just learned today, that the money raised from the proposed tuition increase would go to Academic Affairs versus Health Affairs at a ratio of about 3:1, and that while we’re attempting to raise Academic Affairs salary to the first quintile, I know that very highly rated basic science departments in the Medical School are now in the middle of the third quintile in the country. So, that while, even if this proposal goes through, to increase faculty salaries on the basis of increasing tuition, it doesn’t begin to address the faculty salary problems in the University, and you shouldn’t see it as anything more than a very tentative initial first step. Mr. Cunningham: By way of further explaining exactly what that point is, there are far more students in Academic Affairs than they are in Health Affairs, and for that reason, it would generate more revenue on the different sides of that vast legislative divide in Academic Affairs than Health Affairs. Thanks.
Professor Bayne: I appreciate all your comments and your interest in trying to increase faculty salaries in one area. Just a follow-up on the same comment. There’s a great complexity in the system as far as Ph.D. students, professional students, whatever. The faculty is so incredibly diverse in what their responsibilities are, and the reward systems that are possible, but I would really like to see in the next year or two is the development of some options for faculty, incentive packages that are over and above whatever the salary is, to allow them to increase or supplement their salary in new and creative ways. These systems already exist in other states, and they’re taking major advantage of it in terms of rewarding people for grants and contracts and special participation and work outside the normal university system, whatever. If we would be able to take advantage of that, and the Legislature would allow us to do that in a routine way, we could increase our relative salaries to richer levels, but we need to go to sell packages of options to the Legislature and not just argue for a small percentage here and a small percentage there. We’d like to see sort of a grand solution that’s forward looking and may go to the next ten or fifteen years rather than complain. All these little tiny battles, so we just sort of, you know, take the pittance and then go on to the next battle. We appreciate your support but I just think that we need a bigger answer for success. Mr. Cunningham: I could not agree more and I haven’t seen any answers coming out of Raleigh in a while, and that’s part of my frustration on this issue, and part of my desire to do something about it. Are there other questions? Thank you. I appreciate it again. Thanks. [applause]
Professor Brown: Thank you, Calvin. We do appreciate what a hard place you’re in right now. We appreciate it.
Charge and structure of the Educational Policy Committee
Special report of the Committee on University Government and second reading and vote on resolution amending The Faculty Code of University Government to revise the charge and structure of the Educational Policy Committee: Joseph S. Ferrell, Chair, Committee on University Government.
Professor Brown: And we have one little piece of business about the Educational Policy Committee that we began at our last Council meeting. And we need a second vote on a piece of it, and Joe Ferrell will introduce this. Where’s Joe?
Professor Ferrell (Institute of Government): Let me begin with a little of the procedure so you’ll know where we are. We are now in session as the General Faculty, which means that any person holding the rank of Instructor, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, or Professor, may vote and participate in the debate. It’s not limited just to members of the Faculty Council, so any member of the General Faculty who’s present in addition to the Council members may vote on this issue.
The Code makes it somewhat difficult to amend the Code. So here’s the procedure. Code amendments have to be passed on two separate readings. You have already passed the first reading of this amendment at the last meeting of the General Faculty back in April. So it is now before you for passage on second reading. After studying the transcript, it seemed that the best conclusion was that the faculty had approved two portions of the proposal at the April meeting, but had not approved the remainder of it. So what you have before you now is only those portions of the original proposal that were approved at the last meeting of the General Faculty. If anyone wishes to do so, when the matter is put to discussion, you may move to submit it to a mail vote, or referendum, rather than to vote on it here. If no one makes that move, we’ll go on and proceed to debate and vote on it here. If anyone does make that move, [Professor Brown: Don’t you dare.] it will require one-third of those present and voting to sustain that motion. If the matter is materially amended in any way, it must go over to the next meeting of the General Faculty. And finally, it will take a two-thirds vote to pass it. Now, to the substance of the proposal.
What you have before you does only two things to the Code. First, it enables the Educational Policy Committee to function as a council of advice to the University Registrar. And second, it adds two student members to the Committee to be appointed by the Chair of the Faculty on recommendation of the President of the Student Body and the President of the Graduate and Professional Students’ Association. All matters relating to extension of the jurisdiction of the Committee to Health Affairs had been deleted from the proposal.
Since I was not here at the April meeting, and since I’ve been asked on several occasions of why in the world you get into that, I thought I would tell you briefly some of the background that led the Committee to make that original proposal. This did not meet with unanimous approval. The Educational Policy Committee originated from a 1974 proposal developed by the University Priorities Committee, then chaired by Professor John Gulick, and recommended to the General Faculty by Professor George Taylor, who was then Chair of the Faculty. I believe another source behind the proposal was Professor Hugh Holman, who was the University’s first Provost, and was at that time, or had been in the recent past, Chancellor Ferebee Taylor’s special assistant for long-range planning. The original proposal emanated from a belief at that time that the University’s basic educational policies should be developed on an institution-wide basis, and should enjoy broad-based support across the University’s many and disparate academic units. Those of you who were here at that time will recall that this was a time of undergraduate curriculum reform. There was also concern that in some quarters [had] the growing tendency for professional schools to offer undergraduate degrees. Finally, this period marked the beginning of proportional representation on the Faculty Council for the professional schools and a steady growth in the faculty of professional schools, and a commensurate decline in the proportion of members of the Faculty Council chosen from the College of Arts and Sciences. In that setting, leading members from the College, leading faculty members from the College, were growing somewhat uneasy at having important issues of institutional-wide educational policy presented to and debated by the Faculty Council without thorough preliminary study by a representative faculty committee. The original proposal envisioned three such committees: one for the Division of Academic Affairs, one for the Division of Health Affairs, and one for the Graduate School. There was also considerable interest at that time involving these committees or some other group in development of the University budget. The Gulick/Taylor proposal was referred to the Committee on University Government in 1975. The Chair at that time was Professor Dickson Phillips, Dean of the Law School. Shortly thereafter President Carter named Dean Phillips to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, and I succeeded him as Chair. Our Committee refined the proposal, dropped parts of it, and presented it to the General Faculty, where it was approved. My files do not reveal much about the reasons for abandoning separate committees for the Division of Health Affairs and the Graduate School, and my memory does not serve me as well as it might. After all, it has been 20 years.
We spent most of our time on two issues: faculty involvement in the budget and student membership on faculty committees, both of which were hot-button issues at the time. To the best of my recollection, extending the Committee’s jurisdiction to the Division of Health Affairs was not pursued for two reasons. First, the perception that little, if any, business would likely come before the Committee from that quarter. And second, uneasiness among the professional school deans about a committee whose jurisdiction in that regard had not been spelled out with particularity. Why then, did the Committee on University Government resurrect these ghosts of the past? Fundamentally because the underlying issues have changed but little in two decades. I continue to believe that all issues of educational policy should be resolved in the context of generally accepted policies, and broad-based support of the University faculty is essential to the success of any policies. Under our existing policy, polity, the forum for discussion and resolution of such issues remains the Faculty Council, and the Educational Policy Committee is the primary means of focusing and refining those issues. Now, the matter is at present time extending the Committee’s jurisdiction on hold as far as the Committee on University Government is concerned. But I did feel we owed you an explanation of why we have gotten into it at that point. So that’s the result of that.
At this point I move adoption of the amendment on its second reading. Professor Brown: Do I hear a second? Professor Gooder: Second. Professor Brown: Any further discussion? Okay. Shall we vote? Let’s vote. All those in favor of this proposal, say aye. Any opposed? I’d say that’s two-thirds [there was no opposition]. And we have a resolution of gratitude. Thanks, Joe.
Resolution of Gratitude for Walter R. Davis
Professor Lensing: This will be very brief. This resolution of recognition and gratitude for Walter Royal Davis came about as a result of a suggestion from some of you who have worked very closely in the General Assembly over the last six to nine months in the effort to restore some of the proposed cuts in the University budget. And Walter Royal Davis played a very instrumental and highly effective role in helping to restore those cuts. And as I’m sure many of your know, he’s made many other contributions to the University over a good number of years. And so it seemed an appropriate thing to recognize his efforts by this resolution. We invited him to be present here today, and he phoned the other day to send his regrets. Ordinarily a resolution requires circulation twenty-four hours in advance for your perusal. I’m going to read the resolution and then ask first for a motion from you just to suspend those rules and adopt the resolution this afternoon. And then we’ll vote on the resolution.
RESOLUTION OF RECOGNITION AND GRATITUDE
WALTER ROYAL DAVIS
Over the past three decades, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has had many loyal friends and supporters, but few, if any, exceed the labors of Walter Royal Davis. His name is a familiar one because it is inscribed at the entrance to the main library on this campus, a magnificent structure that came about in a significant way as a result of his support. He remains a zealous guardian of the campus library system. More than helping to erect buildings, Walter Davis has been a steady, clear and outspoken voice in helping the University fulfill its mission of teaching, research, and public service. Most recently, his unflagging and tireless efforts to maintain support from the General Assembly for this campus were indispensable and highly effective. With this RESOLUTION OF RECOGNITION AND GRATITUDE , as approved by vote of the Faculty Council on this eighth day of September, 1995, we the faculty of the University of North Carolina single out this Texan whose heart seems to belong in a special way to Chapel Hill, Walter Royal Davis.
So, Jane, could we have a motion to suspend the rules and vote on this today? [Unidentified individual]: so moved. Professor Brown: Second on the motion? All those in favor of suspending the rules so we can vote on this today, say aye. Any opposed? [Unanimous] Okay, so now we vote on the resolution. You’ve moved the resolution. Do we have a second on the resolution? Thank you. All those in favor of the resolution say aye. Opposed? [unanimous] Thank you. We’ll have Rich Beckman make a beautiful copy of this to send to Walter Davis.
Old or New Business
Professor Brown: Is there any other new business or old business?
Professor Jim Stasheff (Mathematics): I think that it would be wise to have perhaps a brief discussion of some of the other issues about the tuition increase which have not been voiced or perhaps been adequately voiced, certainly as it has transferred to The Daily Tar Heel. Before this meeting, taking my representative duties seriously at least within my own department, I did contact all the members of my department, or attempted to, by E-mail, to go through some of these findings. I think it’s important for the public to realize that the faculty are not speaking with one voice on this issue, that, but I would say that the majority, at least in my department, were concerned about the effect on the students and the fact that the Legislature is essentially passing the buck to us, the politest of terms I could find to describe their actions. There are two issues that it seems to me are not played up sufficiently. One is the constitution of the State of North Carolina, which, as I am told, repeatedly says that the education should be essentially free. [Professor Brown: It says, “the lowest tuition possible, as practical, practical.”] My apologies then. On the other hand the state is supposed to be doing its part. Also in being considerate of our students, in turn, at least for many of our undergraduates, that means getting the message home so that they in turn perhaps will influence their legislators. And my final point, which, again, I think is being overlooked, is that this tuition increase, as opposed to the existing tuition, would stay on campus. But I think the obverse of that needs to be trumpeted, that normal tuition does not go to the campus. Normal tuition goes to the general fund in Raleigh, and I see that being just sort of whispered or mentioned only if somebody’s trying to be very active. But I think it would be wise when we are speaking in public, that we get the full message across that we are concerned for our students even if we are suffering from salaries ourselves, admittedly this is not a charitable institution — we’re not supposed to be doing this on wages appropriate for the clergy [laughter]. We have our students in mind.
Professor Brown: Okay. Would anyone else like to speak to this issue? I didn’t speak to it today because I spoke about it yesterday, and I thought I had said what I had to say, but I did bring a copy of Dick Soloway’s speech, which I thought was really the best, was really right to the point, and he gave a case study of what has occurred in the History Department over the last four years. I see he presided over what he called a “ratable” department. And so he, I think, made an excellent case for why we need to increase faculty salaries. He also, and I expressed our concerns that have already been raised here today, especially about graduate students, especially about allowing the Legislature to pass the buck. Is this setting a precedent that we’re going to be sorry for in the future? But I took this to the Advisory Committee and also to the Executive Committee of [the] Faculty Council. Both groups endorsed the proposal as it stood then: up to a $400 increase in tuition for both undergraduates and graduate students; at least 35% of that reserved for financial aid for students who had need given this tuition increase, and 10% allocated to the libraries. That’s the proposal as you know it. The professional school piece is only for those five professional degrees named. So, it’s the possibility that those professional schools could increase up to $3000. Is that right? [Unidentified speaker]: $2600? Professor Brown: $2600, because the $400 would come out first. Right. And as I understand this, some of the professional schools are not going to seek the option. And they are, it’s the M.B.A.s, it’s the Law School, Medicine, Dentistry, and Pharmacy. And it’s not Public Health, and it’s not Social Work. It’s not the School of Journalism. So it’s not all our professional schools. Professor Calhoun: And it’s only at the core professional degree, the primary professional degree, not the other degrees offered by the schools. Professor Brown: So it is with the understanding that those students have greater earning potential. That those are the students who will be able to make money with those degrees. [Unidentified speaker]: And that piece is only out-of-state students, right? Professor Brown: That is only out-of-state students, that’s right.
Professor Farel: I wish we had more discussion of this concept, of units that earn the money get to keep it, because it’s certainly not anything that seems to redound to the long term amity of the University faculty. And it’s certainly not anything we’ve applied in thinking about grant funding, which certainly comes to Health Affairs much more, but a significant portion of that remains in the general University. Professor Brown: Well I think, there is the opportunity now to speak about this. The Board of Trustees has not voted on this. And so this is our opportunity to say what we want to say about this. It’s the right time to be writing to them and saying what we think. I presented what I thought was the best case at the time, and Dick Soloway as well, and I think it’s very appropriate for us all to be saying — and just speaking among ourselves here about what this — look, it’s a complicated and difficult proposal. It’s not an ideal proposal. I think we’re all aware of that, and so it really is — are they voting on it at the September 22 meeting? Yes. So.
Professor Sue Estroff (Social Medicine): I think it’s really important not to single out people who have “earning power” for what sounds like an almost punitive, “Well, you’re gonna make a lot of money, you can pay more.” I think we have to change the formula to think about debt incurred, and not just think about future earnings. [Professor Brown: inclusive rather than exclusive?] Professor Estroff: Yeah. And less sort of comparing, traditional assumptions that not be founded about haves and have nots. And to think in our formula not just about, “Well, they have access to resources and they’re going to make a lot of money,” but the ratio of the amount of debt that they incur over time, which is enormous. So that really has to be taken in there, and I’d like to see us take a different tone about how we talk about that, how we address the issue, and to heed, I think Mr. Cunningham’s discussion about the alliance that they need to forge amongst themselves rather than sort of fractionating things, so I think it bears thinking about in a different way.
Professor Peter Gilligan (Microbiology and Immunology): I also want to make the point that medical students, and I think probably dental students who are from out of state, already pay $10,000 more tuition than just the standard out-of-state fee, so Medical School tuition, for example, is $19,000 a year, not $9,000 that maybe graduate students and undergraduates would pay. That’s point number one. Point number two that I’d like to make is, do we know what percentage of the actual cost of education that our students actually pay for? And should we always depend upon this Legislature to pay more and more and more of that percentage? I mean the students have to take some responsibility, too, I’m afraid. I think that’s the reality, and those who can’t take responsibility, we give them scholarships, who are unable, they don’t have the resources. But I think it’s pretty silly for families where the income is $100,000, $150,000 a year, to then be quibbling over $400 a year. I’m sorry. That’s not really an important issue. So I think these are some of the things we should also put into the mix as we talk about them.
Mr. Cunningham: I might be able to answer your question about the percentage of subsidization of the state. And that is, I’ve seen projections of the cost of education here, roughly on the order of $20,000. I’ve also seen it as low as $16,000, which indicates, for an undergraduate student, in state, the state is subsidizing on the order of 90% of the cost of the education. That’s particularly relevant when you compare other institutions across the system, at Appalachian, at which they may be, for instance, subsidizing at a lesser percentage.
Professor Gooder: One other comment that I think is worth making is that we should be wary of other simplistic alternatives. I read one this morning in the newspaper that we should only ask for faculty salary money out of the next Legislative session and not any other monies for the University. Well, the idea that you can build a great university solely by faculty salaries I think is very simplistic.
Professor Farel: I just want to say that I think most of us who have spoken in this second half are from Health Affairs and I don’t think any of us would argue that the needs are not greater in certain departments in Academic Affairs than they are in Health Affairs. It’s just the way this is implemented that really, I think, bothers us. But I think we all recognize that particularly in the arts and humanities that salaries are just, they’re criminally low.
Professor Stasheff: I’d just like to go back to the issue of the amount of student debt, whether it’s in the professional schools or the graduate students, or even many undergraduates who have to work their way through. I think it’s had a very pernicious effect on the attitude by someone through medical school and secondhand information, I admit, but so many of his colleagues felt, “When I get out, I’ve got this debt. I’ve got to get rid of that first before I think about doing any pro bono work.” And it’s kind of late by the time you’ve paid off your debt. So, I’m particularly concerned when they say 35% for student aid, okay? Grants? Loans? Professor Brown: No, it’s scholarship money, right? It’s not to be paid back. It doesn’t increase loan debts.
Professor Dirk Frankenberg (Marine Sciences): I participated in a meeting yesterday as well, and unfortunately I think we have to ask about this issue and recognizing that the proposal is by no means ideal — it has lots of problems — and almost all the discussion I’ve heard is about is what would happen if we accepted this option. What concerns me, and I think about it a bit, is what happens if we reject this option. And I don’t see that as a very pretty picture from my dealings with the Legislature. There are simplistic solutions to these problems being proposed, but rejecting a solution to a problem you’ve been talking about for half a decade is not going to put us in a very good position to lock arms with our colleagues and go to the Legislature asking only for faculty salary as the year ends. Professor Brown: I will be happy to supply the names and addresses of all the Board of Trustees members, and if you want to give me more feedback, I’ll be happy to communicate with them as well. Professor Frankenberg: How will you get us those names? Do you have them? Professor Brown: I have them. We’ll be happy to send them to you. David, could you — Barry wants one. How many people want one? Do you want one? We’ll just send it to everybody. You should have their names anyway. We’ll just send it to everybody. Okay. Great. Anything else? Thank you very much for bringing it up, Jim.
Professor Bayne: I just want to bring to your attention one issue which we talked about last year, and I wondered if it was in progress, being dealt with. Professor Brown: What’s that? Professor Bayne: That is, if you look at Health Affairs versus Academic Affairs, almost 50% of Health Affairs now are non-tenured faculty. Professor Brown: Yes. Professor Bayne: And they’re not represented in the system. They’re only represented indirectly. So when you talk to this issue of 25 representatives, it’s really more like 45. Professor Brown: It’s in the works. The University Government Committee — we have been working all summer on a proposal that we think is going to work. Professor Bayne: Okay, I appreciate your help. Professor Brown: Thank you. Anything else?
Professor Lensing: Will you please your turn chairs — Mr. Thompson: No, leave them along. Leave the chairs alone. Professor Brown: Leave them alone, David? Mr. Thompson: Yes, leave them alone. Professor Brown: You’re fine to go.
The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.
George S. Lensing
Secretary of the Faculty
Actions of the Council
|September 8, 1995Royal Davis.||Resolution of Recognitionand Gratitude for Walter Royal Davis.
Second reading on amendment to Faculty Code of University Government: Section IV.B. (1)(b) (Educational Policy Committee). To act as council of advice to University Registrar and to add two students to membership.