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Minutes of the Faculty Council

Friday, December 6, 1996, 3:00 P.M.


Present (57): C. Anderson, Andrews, L. Bailey, Bangdiwala, Barefoot, Beck, Beckman, Bentley Brice, Brink, Bromberg, Brown, Chambers, Conley, Dalton, Dodds, Eckel, Estroff, Evens, Farel, Fletcher, Foshee, Fox, Frankenberg, Hattem, Herman, Hodges, Holmgren, Howard, Irene, Jackson, Jenkins, Johnstone, Lachiewicz, LeFebvre, Lentz, Leonard, Loda, Loeb, Maffly-Kipp, Mauriello, G. McNeil, L. McNeil, Mill, Owen, Pagano, Panter, Passannante, Peacock, Rabinowitz, Renner, Rutledge, Salgado, Searles, Skelly, Strauss, Weber, White, Williams.

Excused absences (21): J. Anderson, A. Bailey, Bose, Crumley, Danis, Eckel, Favorov, Gless, Hogue, Ji, Mandel, Matson, Pielak, Platin, Rinehart, Shapiro, Shea, Stidham, Tauchen, Tysinger, Yankaskas.

Unexcused absences (4): Crimmins, Pike, Rosenman, Stuck.

Memorial Resolution

Professor Joseph Flora presented a memorial resolution for the late Robert Louis Haig, Professor Emeritus of English. Adopted.

Chancellor’s Remarks

Chancellor Hooker distributed a report of the proposals that have been funded by the Chancellor’s Task Force for Instructional Technology. He had hoped to get 20 good proposals; 120 were received and he was enormously pleased with the submissions–so much so that he added $200,000 to the $1.26 million originally made available for this purpose. He is now trying to identify additional sources of money to enable even more of the submissions to be funded. He singled out the Department of Music’s digital classroom submission for special praise.

The Chancellor next commented on the University’s budget priorities for the 1997 General Assembly. His highest priority this year will be, as it was last year, faculty salaries. His objective is to bring UNC-CH up to the level of the University of Virginia at the full professor and associate professor ranks. Last year our average salary at the full professor rank was about $10,000 below Virginia. We are on a par with UVA at the assistant professor rank. Other expansion budget priorities include permanent funding in the continuation budget for graduate student heath insurance; technology; libraries; reduction in the percentage of overhead receipts for sponsored research retained by the state; and more funding for graduate student tuition remissions. Our list of capital projects includes renovation of the House Undergraduate Library ($6 million), an addition to Beard Hall ($9 million), renovation of the Institute of Government ($16 million), an addition to Hill Hall for the music library ($8 million), and permission to build a new Student Services Building as a self-liquidating project ($18 million). On another front, we are seeking greater freedom in managing our own construction contracts, beginning with the design phase.

Finally, the Chancellor reported that the work going on at the Old Well is to remove many layers of lead-based paint.

Chair of the Faculty’s Remarks

Professor Brown reported that the recent modifications in Faculty Major Disability and Parental Leave Policies were the result of recommendations from the Faculty Welfare Committee.

Professor Brown asked for volunteers to serve on a focus group about transportation and parking and noted that she had had difficulty this year finding people who were interested in serving on the Parking Committee.

Professor Brown next turned to the work currently in progress that focuses on the University’s intellectual climate. She has talked with a number of students about this and has found that they have several concerns. Some think that there is an implication that undergraduate students are not serious about their work. Others fear that the underlying motive is to weaken the Greek system. Some regret the impression that Carolina is mostly a ìparty school.î She said that is not how she or the Executive Committee sees this effort. The purpose is to examine how the faculty can participate in creating an environment that stimulates the faculty as well as our students; that makes the faculty want to interact with students in a way that is challenging and invigorating.

Annual Reports of Standing Committees

Faculty Hearings

Genna Rae McNeil Co-Chair [S. Elizabeth Gibson, Co-Chair]. Professor McNeil [History] observed that the Faculty Hearings Committee deems it a privilege to be able to protect due process and opportunities for faculty members to be heard on matters dealing with impermissible grounds for denial of tenure and disciplinary proceedings involving suspension or termination of employment. The committee takes its responsibilities very seriously and is eager to advise and talk with faculty members about their concerns. One should not wait until disaster strikes before thinking about the Hearings Committee. Professor McNeil also urged faculty members to agree to stand for election to the committee if asked. Diversity on the committee is very important with respect to the disciplines, with respect to gender, with respect to race and ethnicity, and with respect to experience at the University.

Faculty Grievance

John C. Boger, Chair. Professor Boger commented briefly on the committee’s written report. There were no questions or comments.

Instructional Personnel

Richard J. Richardson, Chair. Professor Brown noted that the Provost was unavoidably absent due to oral surgery. She asked for questions or comments on the written report.

Professor Barry Lentz [Biochemistry & Biophysics] raised the question of additional days having been added to the academic calendar (a matter within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Instructional Personnel). He regretted that this question had not been brought to the Council before the decision was made and implemented. He asked how our calendar compares with peer institutions such as the University of Virginia or the University of Michigan.

Professor Brown said that it is her understanding that adding five days to the calendar puts us out of line with our peer institutions.

Professor Bobbi Owen (Dramatic Art) wondered whether there is a move toward General Administration establishing a standard calendar for all 16 institutions, rather than allowing each institution to set its own. She noted several of the problems associated with lengthening the calendar. Chancellor Hooker replied that we don’t know what General Administration intends to do in this regard, but Professor Lenz is correct in suggesting that we are at the high end of the range among public research instructional days. He hopes that General Administration will allow UNC-CH to benchmark other institutions in the top 20 public research universities.

Professor Jack Sasson [Religious Studies] asked whether consideration had been given to eliminating fall break altogether or reducing it to one day.

Mr. Aaron Nelson [Student Body President] noted that fall break was originally created in response to national studies showing that the suicide rate for students was highest in mid-fall due to stress levels. Universities around the country instituted the fall break to address that situation.

Professor Pete Andrews [Environmental Sciences & Engineering] spoke of the need to coordinate our calendar with Duke, NC State and maybe even our own Law School.

Mr. David Lanier [University Registrar] replied that the calendar changes mandated by General Administration will mean that all UNC System schools will have similar calendars, but it will be virtually impossible to coordinate with Duke.

Professor Lenz said that we should be making a case to General Administration that demands on the faculty in a research institution should be taken into account in matters of this nature. Chancellor Hooker replied that he understood the point ìbut sometimes he works best who works behind the scenes.î

Old or New Business

The Secretary of the Faculty, Professor Ferrell, called attention to the beginning of the nomination process for faculty elections in the spring. He asked members of the faculty who have an interest in standing for election to any of the elective committees or to the Council to make that known to him or some member of the Nominating Committee. He also complimented the University Gazette for coverage of Faculty Council meetings and said that the official minutes would likely be somewhat shorter than in the past if the Gazette’s coverage continued to be this good.


There being no further business, the Council adjourned at 4:10 p.m.

Discussion of Recommendations of the Task Force on Intellectual Climate

Following adjournment, members of the Council formed six discussion groups for discussion of the work of the six subcommittees of the Task Force on Intellectual Climate.

Joseph S. Ferrell

Secretary of the Faculty


Actions of the Council


Date Action Destination
September 8, 1996 No Action Meeting canceled due to adverse weather
October 11, 1996 Second reading of Amendments to Faculty Code of University Government to allow fixed-term faculty to serve on and vote for certain standing committee Secretary of the Faculty, Resolution on Privatization Chancellor Resolution on Student Recruitment Office of Undergraduate Admissions
November 15, 1996 Resolution on Charge of Faculty Welfare Committee Committee on University Government
December 6, 1996  No formal actions



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