Meeting of the Faculty Council

November 17, 3:00 p.m.

The Pleasants Family Assembly Room in Wilson Library

Chancellor James Moeser and Professor Sue Estroff, Chair of the Faculty, will preside.

Agenda

3:00 Call to Order by the Chancellor.

ACT 3:00 Memorial Resolutions.

  • George B. Daniel, Professor of French Emeritus.
  • Godfrey M. Hochbaum, Professor of Health Behavior and Health Education Emeritus.

DISC 3:10 Chancellor’s Remarks and Question Time.

  • Chancellor James Moeser invites questions or comments on any topic.

INFO 3:30 Remarks by the Chair of the Faculty. Professor Sue Estroff.

DISC 3:45 Annual Report of the Faculty Athletics Committee.

  • Professor Richard Rosen, Chair for 2000-01.

DISC 4:00 Issues Related to the Impact of Construction on Campus Life.

DISC 4:25 Faculty and Staff Benefits Issues. JoAnne Pitz, UNC-CH Director of Benefits.

DISC 4:35 Topics Raised by Council Members.

ACT 4:50 Closed Session. Distinguished Alumni Awards for 2001.

ACT 5:00 Adjourn.

 

Joseph S. Ferrell
Secretary of the Faculty

 

KEY:
ACT = Action
DISC = Discussion
INFO = Information

Minutes

Attendance

Present (53): Allison, Ammerman, Angel, Bell, Bender, Blackburn, Bolas, Bollen, Boxill, Bromberg, Carelli, Chenault, Clegg, Cordeiro-Stone, Crawford-Brown, Daye, Dominguez, Drake, Fowler, George, Granger, Grossberg, Henry, Huang, Janda, Ketch, Kjervik, Kopp, Kupper, LeFebvre, Lester, Ludlow, Madison, McCormick, McKeown, Meehan-Black, Meyer, P. Molina, Nelson, Panter, Pfaff, Raab-Traub, Rao, Sekerak, Slatt, Steponaitis, Stewart, Straughan, Strauss, Sueta, Taft, Vaughn, and Weiss.

Excused absences (27): Adler, Bowen, Bynum, Cotton, De La Cadena, Elvers, Files, Fishman, Gilland, Kagarise, Kaufman, Kessler, Lubker, Meece, Metguer, A. Molina, Moran, Otey, Raasch, Reinert, Rosenfeld, Savitz, Smith, Tauchen, Walsh, Werner, and Williams.

Unexcused absences (3): Assani, Graham, and McQueen.

Call to Order

Chancellor James Moeser called the meeting to order at 3:00 p.m.

Memorial Resolution

Prof. Frederick W. Vogler (Romance Languages) presented a memorial resolution for the late George Bernard Daniel, Jr., Professor of French Emeritus.

Prof. Jo Anne Earp (Health Behavior and Health Education) presented a memorial resolution for the late Godfrey M. Hochbaum, Professor of Health Behavior and Health Education Emeritus.

Chancellor’s Remarks

Chancellor Moeser thanked the faculty, staff, and students of the University for their help in passing the higher education bond issue. There was a 73% approval rate in all the 100 counties of the state which sends a powerful message that the people of the state support, and will continue to support, public higher education. The construction bonds are the largest ever passed in this, or any, state in the country in support of public education. The Chancellor said the state and the University remain in a position of national leadership. The University has a tremendous challenge ahead, especially to maintain the quality of life on the campus during the years of construction. The construction has already begun, and the faculty is ensured of input with the construction planning staff during the many phases of the construction.

Chancellor Moeser thanked Prof. Jack Evans, Interim Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration, who was in his last day of service in that capacity, for his outstanding service. On November 20, 2000, Dr. Nancy Suttenfield will become the new Vice Chancellor.

Chancellor Moeser reported that Adam Gross of Ayers Saint Gross recently made a two-hour presentation on the University Master Plan to the Board of Trustees. The plan will be presented to the Trustees for approval at their January, 2001, meeting. This document will guide the University’s physical development for the next 40 to 50 years.

Chancellor Moeser reiterated his support of the Town/Gown Committee which he and Chapel Hill Mayor Rosemary Waldorf have formed to provide a constructive mechanism for the University and the Town to explore their mutual interests. The University committee members are Jonathan Howes, Special Assistant to the Chancellor for Local Relations, and chair of the master planning process; Vice Chancellor and General Counsel Susan Ehringhaus; and members of the Board of Trustees, Richard Stevens and Stick Williams. Some of the issues to be addressed are the Master Plan; a faster and less burdensome review process through the Town of Chapel Hill (specifically with respect to the floor area ratio); transit; transportation; and traffic and pedestrian safety. When the plans are ready, another issue will be the development of the Horace Williams Tract. The Chancellor said some of the statements made in the press about plans for the tract are misleading. He said that meetings of the Horace Williams Planning Committee have been, and will continue to be, open to the public and to the media. The next meeting will be at the Carolina Club on November 30, 2000, and the Chancellor encouraged members of the faculty to attend. He said that any plans proposed by the Planning Committee will be presented to the Town of Chapel Hill prior to being presented to the Board of Trustees. It will be several months before plans will be ready for consideration by the Trustees. The process of developing the plan will include presentation to and discussion by all of the many constituencies affected.

Chancellor Moeser discussed the tuition increases approved by the Board of Trustees at their November 16th meeting for professional degree programs in the Schools of Business, Dentistry, Law, Medicine, and Pharmacy. The time has come to address the concerns of maintaining the quality of the faculty and the academic programs in these schools in order for the University to remain a nationally competitive leader. If approved by the Board of Governors, the increases will take effect for the Fall Semester of the 2001-2002 academic year. This increase will be in addition to the general tuition increases already approved by the Board of Governors. The proposals will be presented to the Board of Governors for review in February, with action expected in March. Most of the tuition increases will be phased in over a three-year period, and range from $1,200 for out-of-state students in Pharmacy to a high of $5,400 for MBA students in the Kenan-Flagler Business School. Financial aid will range from 15% to 50% of the tuition increases. The overriding philosophy will be that qualified students will continue to have the opportunity to earn professional degrees at UNC. The programs will use part of the increased revenues to increase faculty salaries, and to retain, hire and recruit new faculty. Other uses of the revenues will include creating faculty and staff positions, recruiting community preceptors to train and teach medical students, developing new or expanding current curriculum programs, improving library facilities and information technology, and purchasing scientific equipment.

Chair of the Faculty’s Remarks

Prof. Sue Estroff, Chair of the Faculty, thanked the Chancellor for his efforts for passage of the higher education bonds. She reflected that the University is entering a new era that will require of the faculty vigilance, generosity with time and effort, patience, creativity in problem solving, collaboration with others such as the Towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro, more risk-taking, more trust, more and quicker responsiveness, and tolerance of change.

Prof. Estroff reminded the faculty that Mid-Year Commencement is scheduled for December 20, 2000, at the Smith Center at 2:00 p.m. Prof. Peter Kaufman will deliver the Commencement address.

Prof. Estroff turned to the matter of student behavior at Spring Commencement and invited members of the Council to voice their opinions.

Prof. Vincas Steponaitis (Anthropology) said Carolina commencements are not as rowdy as those at his alma mater (Michigan), but sometimes the attention level for the speakers is not appropriate. He felt that the students should have fun but not be disrespectful of the speakers.

Prof. Thomas Clegg (Physics & Astronomy) offered the thought that there should be some reasonable compromise between fun and respect for the celebration of the accomplishments by the students.

Prof. Richard Pfaff (History) said that the students’ desire for amusement at commencement should be respected; in fact, it is an ancient element of such academic occasions. Nevertheless, we have every right to insist on a level of decorum that respects the solemnity of the occasion. Decorum at our Spring commencement has deteriorated to the point that it is a serious embarrassment to the University.

Ms. Elizabeth Chenault (University Libraries) commented that some of the problems were with the speakers who had not given the commencement address too much thought, and some, on very hot days, had spoken for too long.

Prof. Deborah Bender (Health Policy and Administration) said she grew tired of the ceremonies after several years, and felt that the burden should not be put on the students alone.

Prof. Jan Boxill (Philosophy) said she had attended and enjoyed commencement for many years. One fairly recent commencement speaker (Ted Turner) was especially disastrous, and some have spoken too long on hot days, but on the whole she did not think the occasion has deteriorated as much as some contend.

Mr. Josh Bosin, student liaison to the Faculty Council, said he felt the behavior of the students at the ceremony has gotten out of control, and that solemnity should be restored to commencement. Students should be allowed to have fun, but graduation should be put back into graduation.

Prof. Estroff said this was a responsibility of the faculty, as well as the students. She encouraged the faculty to discuss commencement with their students.

Next, Prof. Estroff asked for a Council discussion of faculty attitudes toward the Honor System and the student court system.

Prof. James Ketch (Music) wondered how much students know about the system before they come into the classroom. He thought it would be helpful to the faculty to have better information as to how the system works so that teachers could conduct classroom discussions of the Honor Court and its time-honored traditions at the University. Prof. Estroff responded that the students have told her that many feel that the faculty is apathetic and uninformed about the system.

Vice Chancellor Susan Kitchen responded that there is a session during orientation at which the Instrument of Student Judicial Governance is distributed and discussed, but for some students this occurs months before they began classes. In some years, there have been mandatory sessions with the students in their dormitories. She felt it was incumbent on the faculty to review the Honor Code in their classes and to discuss the concept of academic integrity which the Honor Code expects students to observe. She offered to put together a summary for the faculty to use in such discussions.

Prof. Bender thought it important that new faculty be informed about the Honor System. Prof. Estroff said this is covered to some extent during the orientation sessions offered to new faculty, but the sessions are not mandatory and not all attend.

Chancellor Moeser asked how the faculty deals with discovery of lack of integrity in their classrooms. Do faculty members handle the situation themselves by, for example, giving failing grades, or do they refer cases to the Honor Court?

Prof. Darlene Sekerak (Medical Allied Health Sciences) said the process works fine once invoked, but students and faculty are apathetic about getting involved.

Prof. Clegg said he had taken some cases to the Honor Court and he felt it worked well. He had, in some cases, not been upheld because he had not given proper information to his students about how the system applied to his course. He felt that was his job and he accepted the Court’s decision.

Prof. Timothy Taft (Orthopaedics) said he would like to see the Honor Court confined to issues of academic integrity. The legal system should deal with illegal activities.

Prof. Joseph Ferrell, Secretary of the Faculty, asked how many members of the faculty felt that their knowledge of the system was adequate. (About one-third of those present indicated by a show of hands that they felt they adequately understood it.)

Dean Risa Palm (College of Arts & Sciences) said that the faculty was not always informed about the Honor Code and more should be done to ensure that information is provided.

Prof. Ketch suggested that the faculty should take a pro-active stance by expressing support for and confidence in the workings of the Honor System. It should not be presented to students as a threat.

Prof. Ronald Strauss (Dental Ecology) felt it would be helpful for the faculty and the University community at large to receive periodic reports about the Court’s activities.

Annual Reports of Standing Committees

Prof. Richard Rosen (Law), Chair, presented the Annual Report of the Faculty Athletics Committee

Prof. Pfaff asked about the status of proposed Thursday night football games. Athletics Director Richard Baddour responded that the Atlantic Coast Conference has negotiated a contract with ESPN that requires each member institution to host a home football game on Thursday at least once in every five years. Compliance of the same provision in the previous contract was accomplished by playing the N.C. State game in Charlotte. How we will comply with it under the current contract has not yet been decided. The alternatives to a Thursday game during the term are not very good. One is scheduling the game on Thanksgiving Day. In any event, the Department of Athletics will try to assure that the event is as non-disruptive as possible. The main problem is parking.

Prof. Pfaff suggested that the contract be renegotiated. Mr. Baddour said that the contract exists; the challenge is to find an acceptable way to comply with it.

Prof. Ferrell asked if it would be helpful to contact faculty bodies at other ACC institutions to determine whether they would experience similar disruptions from Thursday football games. Mr. Baddour said that the Department of Athletics had expressed concerns about this requirement when the contract was in negotiation, but did not prevail. He did think it would be helpful for the faculty to voice its concerns to the ACC and the other member schools.

In response to a comment pointing out that female athletes appear to out-perform male athletes academically, Prof. Rosen said that he doubts that the graduation rate among male athletes will ever reach the level achieved by the female athletes. The graduation rate differential between male athletes and males in general was below 10% several years, but we are now back to differentials in excess of 10%. Interim Vice Chancellor Evans, who is our ACC representative, said that higher rates of attrition among male athletes began about 10 years ago when the NCAA rules were changed for athletes wishing to transfer to another school. This helps to explain the difference between the two genders, as the male athletes transfer at a higher rate.

Prof. Marila Cordeiro-Stone (Pathology & Laboratory Medicine) asked if the Committee also looks at academic progression toward graduation. Prof. Rosen responded that, among other things, the Committee looks at predicted grade-point averages compared to actual grade-point averages. The grade point averages for male athletes tend to be lower than the grade-point averages of non-athletes, but often the actual average is higher than predicted due to the good work of the Academic Counseling Center. Prof. Cordeiro-Stone asked about steps that the Athletics Department takes to help athletes improve their academic performance. Mr. Baddour said there were two faculty groups, the elected Athletics Committee and an appointed faculty committee that advises the academic support program. Both of these committees review and support the work of the Department’s academic counselors. The Department tracks the performance of all student athletes and works directly with the coaches on an individual basis to try to determine whether there are patterns that need to be addressed.

Prof. Larry Kupper (Biostatistics) asked how the University compares with other institutions. Mr. Baddour said there are three sources of data on student-athlete graduation rates. The report presented by the Faculty Athletics Committee looks at the total population of student-athletes without regard to how they came into the program. An annual report prepared by the Board of Governors looks only at those who were recruited. Finally, the NCAA reports information only on scholarship athletes. There are no national data comparable to that presented by the Athletics Committee. There are also no national data outside the 16 campuses of the UNC System comparable to that included in the Board of Governors’ Report. In that report, we are at or close to the top in graduation rates. We are consistently at the top tier in the NCAA report.

Issues Related to the Impact of Construction on Campus Life.

Prof. Tom Bowers (Journalism and Mass Communication), representing the Building and Grounds Committee, gave a brief overview of the Committee and its membership, all appointed by the Chancellor. The Committee functions as an advisor to the Chancellor, does not formulate policy, and has no administrative authority. The specific role of the Committee is to advise on the location of new construction, selection of architects, building designs, external appearance of buildings, and signage. The Committee is very concerned with upcoming issues such as the staging of construction, the noise, pedestrian and bicycle safety, and the loss of parking places. The scheduling and planning of the projects will be the responsibility of the Facilities Planning Office.

Mr. Bruce Runberg, Associate Vice Chancellor for Facilities Services, said that his department has been working with the data developed by the Eva Klein study for several years now. That study is the foundation for our current construction plan. The plan was conceived as covering five years, but it is likely to take seven or eight. The bond money will be released over a period of time. Although we are planning 75 to 80 projects, we will probably not have additional staff. Obviously, all this work cannot be started at once, but we have worked out a plan for beginning and completion dates of each project. We anticipate difficulty in hiring the designers and other workers for all of these projects, because of the flooding of the market and the competition. Also, the bond bill projects will be fitted into the schedule for other projects included in the Master Plan.

Mr. Gordon Rutherford, Director of Facilities Planning, described the challenging plans for scheduling, timetables and construction work, which will include close coordination with the academic administrators to keep the impact as minimal as possible The web site address for communications is www.fac.unc.edu/cip, which will give information for the construction schedules at any point on campus. Pedestrian safety is very important and the signage will be increased. Other suggestions from faculty will be welcome.

Vice Chancellor Evans commented that there is a working group within the Facilities Planning Division that will be preparing the plan for the sequence of the projects. This group will be ongoing during the construction schedule and will monitor the planning. The web site mentioned by Mr. Rutherford will be updated daily. Prof. Estroff asked what role the faculty will play. Vice Chancellor Evans responded that the working group is a monitoring group, not a decision-making one. He suggested that the faculty communicate questions and concerns to the appropriate staff via e-mail. Prof. Estroff suggested that each area of campus appoint an ombudsman to voice the concerns of that particular area and those of the faculty affected.

Prof. Clegg pointed out that parking problems will become increasingly severe. Prof. Estroff said the reality is that faculty will find that increasing use of the park-and-ride lots is inevitable, and that long length of service will be no guarantee of continued access to conveniently located parking.

Joanne Kucharski (Employee Forum) said she has transmitted a joint letter from students, faculty, and staff to the Transportation and Parking Advisory Committee (TPAC) asking that it include all of the major campus constituencies for input on the transportation and parking plan. Mr. Rutherford said that TPAC is working on a plan that will recognize the impacts of the construction. Mr. Runberg added that transportation and parking issues are very much a part of the overall construction planning process. We are attempting not to take any more parking spaces than necessary.

Prof. Steponaitis asked that a mechanism be put in place to respond quickly to questions, so that faculty seeking information or offering comment can be assured that they are being heard. Mr. Runberg agreed and said there would be a person specifically assigned to respond.

Ms. Chenault said many of the old trees are disappearing on the campus due to wind storms and construction. She asked about plans for replacing them. Mr. Runberg said that many trees will have to be removed, but he hopes to minimize their number. There is also a training program for the groundskeepers to protect the trees. Each project will have a large landscaping plan. Any trees removed will be replaced; in fact we are consistently planting more trees than we lose.

Prof. Noelle Granger (Cell Biology and Anatomy) said that Ayers Saint Gross had promised that the trees removed would be replaced with more mature trees, rather than with “twigs,” and she wanted assurance that this would be the case. Mr. Runberg responded that trees removed on Columbia Street would soon be replaced, but there is a high mortality rate when trying to plant large trees. In general, the maximum practical size for replacement is a specimen with a 3.5″ to 4″ diameter trunk.

Prof. Nancy Raab-Traub (Microbiology) expressed concern that the design of new construction harmonize with our historic buildings. Mr. Rutherford said the Master Plan includes design guidelines specifically directed at architecture. Prof. Raab-Traub asked if there were plans to include works of art in new buildings. Mr. Rutherford said that in the past the University has worked closely with public arts agencies and will continue to do so. Prof. Estroff asked about the money set aside by the Legislature for public art. Mr. Rutherford said that program has been eliminated.

Prof. Gerald Bolas (Ackland Art Museum) asked if there would be further opportunity for faculty comment on the completed Master Plan before it is presented to the Board of Trustees for approval. Mr. Rutherford said no further changes in the plan are contemplated except resolution of the southern entry route.

Prof. Bolas asked if there would be any more Town Meeting discussions. Chancellor Moeser responded. There are groups studying the Arts Corridor and the Science Complex. When the Plan is approved it will be dynamic and evolving, not static. The plan is now about 97% complete. The remaining discussion will focused in the Mason Farm Road area, where there are four or five options under consideration. Prof. Bolas said he had great confidence in the Plan, but he asked if changes after its initial approval by the Trustees will also need specific Trustee approval. Chancellor Moeser replied that each individual project will require Trustee approval. The Master Plan is a concept, not a blueprint.

Prof. Estroff said it was up to the faculty to take the initiative to assure that faculty input in the design process will happen. The faculty should take a proactive, constructive, and participatory role. It is important that the faculty have an opportunity to take part in the design and building of their workspace. Mr. Rutherford said the more information the architects could gain from the faculty the better job they can do.

Distinguished Alumna/Alumnus Awards for 2001.

On motion of Prof. Ferrell, the Council went into closed session to consider nominees for Distinguished Alumna/Alumnus Awards to be presented on University Day, 2001. Prof. Ferrell presented brief biographical sketches of five persons recommended by the Committee on Honorary Degrees and Special Awards. Each nominee was approved by the Council.

Adjournment.

The Business of the day having concluded, the Council adjourned at 5:00 p.m.

 

Pdf of meeting materials

Print Friendly, PDF & Email