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Meeting of the Faculty Council

Friday, November 15, 2013
3:00 p.m.
Pleasants Family Assembly Room
Wilson Library

Chancellor Carol Folt and Professor Jan Boxill, Chair of the Faculty, presiding


3:00 Chancellor’s Remarks and Question Period

  • Chancellor Carol Folt

3:15  Provost’s Remarks and Question Period

  • Provost Jim Dean

3:30  Chair of the Faculty’s Remarks and Question Period

  • Chair of the Faculty Jan Boxill

3:40  Annual Committee Reports Received By Title

3:45  Annual Reports For Discussion

Faculty Athletics Committee

Faculty Athletics Representative

4:05  New Functionalities in Connect Carolina

  • Mr. Chris Derickson, University Registrar

4:10  Report from the Faculty Assembly Delegation on System-wide Core Competencies

Vote:  Resolution 2013-17. On Affirming the Core Competencies of Critical Thinking and Written Communication as Fundamental Requirements for Successful Mastery in All Academic Disciplines (Presented by the Faculty Executive Committee)

  • Prof. Beth Kurtz-Costes, Chair, Faculty Assembly Delegation

4:25  Presentation: Results from the 2013 Undergraduate Alumni Survey

  • Dean Karen Gil, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Dr. Lynn Williford, Assistant Provost, Institutional Research and Assessment

4:45  Vote:  Nominees for 2014 Distinguished Alumnus/a Awards (Closed Session; materials require Sakai login by Faculty Council members)

4:55  Adjourn

Handout: A Profile of Lecturers (authored by the Committee on Fixed-Term Faculty)

Meeting Minutes

Journal of Proceedings of the Faculty Council

The Faculty Council of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill convened Friday, November 15, 2013, at 3:00 p.m. in the Pleasants Family Assembly Room at the Wilson Library.

The following 69 members attended: Able, Adams, Aikat, Anthony, Bachenheimer, Beck, Beltran Lopez, Boettiger Cooney, Boxill, Brown, Caren, Cavin, Chambers, Champagne, Chavis, Chenault, Copenhaver, Cox, Cuddeback, Day, Dean, Dolan, Engel, Ferrell, Fisher, Folt, Furry, Gilligan, Giovanello, Grabowski, Gucsacas-Calikoglu, Gulledge, Guskiewicz, Guthmiller, Heitsch, Hill, Hobbs, Hodges, Howes, Irons, Ives, Joyner, Kang, Koomen, Kurtz-Costes, Larson, Lee, Lu, Mayer-Davis, McMillan, Melehy, T. Miller, V. Miller, Mitran, Moon, Palmer, Parise, Parker, Paul, Persky, Pertsova, Reiter, Rial, Rodgers, Stavas, Swift-Scanlan, Wang, R. Watson, and Yaqub.

Members absent with excuse: Alesii, Baumgartner, Boulton, Bulik, Bunch, Chapman, Chera, Collier, Cook, Divaris, Edwards, Fry, Gerhardt, Hackman, Hirsch, Houck, Hsu, Kramer, Leonard, Liu, Mohanty, Moreton, Pryal, Shackelford, Spagnoli, Stenberg, Steponaitis, Tepper, Thompson, Viera, Waterhouse, H. Watson, and You.

Chancellor’s Remarks and Question Period

Prof. Boxill welcomed the faculty and acknowledged that this meeting marks the first occasion that the chancellor has addressed the Council after her installation. She welcomed Chancellor Folt to the podium. Chancellor Folt thanked the faculty for attending the installation events and thanked the staff and students for organizing and participating in the program. She encouraged the faculty to watch the faculty panels online if they were unable to attend. She estimated that more than one thousand people attended “The World Comes Here: Celebrating the Performing Arts at Carolina,” and said that the student groups performed well alongside the professional musicians and dancers. She thanked the Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost for sponsoring the event and Prof. Joe Templeton for helping to organize the faculty panels.

Chancellor Folt reported that she attended three national events recently, including the Association of American Universities (AAU) meeting. She said that while there were only about a dozen women representing their constituent universities, women from the University of North Carolina were well represented. Among them were Bernadette Gray-Little, former Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost, UNC alumna Mary Sue Coleman, and Molly Broad, former president of UNC.

Chancellor Folt said that the AAU meeting focused on the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act and the impact of the budget sequester on the availability of federal research dollars. University leaders discussed the importance of research and educating legislators about the sequester’s impacts.

Chancellor Folt attended a meeting at the White House to discuss the accessibility of higher education to low-income students. The Obama Administration is interested in increasing the number of first-generation low-income students at top universities. She said that UNC is viewed as a leader in this area. The Administration is working to get both public and private universities to support this initiative. The chancellor said that she is proud of the Carolina Covenant and need-blind admissions procedures that Carolina has in place.

The chancellor also attended a meeting of the Association of Public Land Grant Universities (APLU). She said that they are also looking for ways to advise the Obama Administration about college accessibility for low-income students. She is hopeful that Carolina will continue to have an impact on that discussion.

The chancellor announced that Joel Curran has been named UNC’s first vice chancellor for communications and public affairs. She said that Mr. Curran will work with faculty and the new vice chancellor for development to help publicize the work that faculty do.

Chancellor Folt said that she was impressed with the diversity of the Carolina community. She attended the 25th anniversary party for the Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History. Dr. Rosiland Fuse-Hall spoke at the event. Dr. Fuse-Hall is a Carolina graduate who worked as  secretary to the Board of Governors and as associate dean in the College of Arts and Sciences. She is now president of Bennett College. Chancellor Folt said that the speech focused on her view of the last 25 years in higher education.

Among other events, the chancellor participated in two classes on the subjects of entrepreneurship and higher education. She attended Homecoming events and met with the Women’s Leadership Council. She also attended the Black Alumni Tailgate, where she met first-generation Carolina graduates who paved the way for African-American integration at Carolina.

The chancellor opened the floor for comments and questions.

Prof. Steve Bachenheimer (Microbiology and Immunology) asked if the Board of Governors would restrict the amount of tuition revenue that will be reallocated for need-based aid at Chapel Hill. He thought that the Board of Governors (BOG) had decided that reserving a proportion of new tuition dollars to set aside for need-based aid will no longer be mandatory.

Mr. Steve Farmer, vice provost for enrollment and undergraduate admissions, said that the BOG carefully considered the issue last year and sought advice from the constituent universities. He explained that many 17 constituent institutions need to control tuition revenue and the ability to allocate to need-based aid. He said that Chapel Hill does not intend to change its current practice.

Chancellor Folt said that the federal government is interested in enabling more successful state and philanthropic partnerships and Carolina is viewed as a leader in this area.

Provost’s Remarks and Question Period

Provost Jim Dean said that much of his work lately has been written about in The Daily Tar Heel so he would not make formal remarks. Instead, he opened the floor for questions.

Prof. Leslie Parise (Biochemistry and Biophysics) asked Provost Dean if there will be more incubator space for company start-ups in the future. She heard that spaces in the Mary Ellen Jones and Genome Sciences buildings were going to be repurposed.

Provost Dean said that we do have some space available on campus, but are looking for more. He was unaware that incubator spaces were being closed and said that he would look into it.

Prof. Charlotte Boettiger (Psychology) pointed out that there has been confusion surrounding the spending of federal research funds for computers. She said that the budget available in Facilities and Administrative (F & A) departmental accounts are not sufficient to purchase computers. Faculty  have to buy computers with research funds, even if those computers are used for other purposes.

Provost Dean said that this is the first time he has heard about the issue. He asked others to raise their hands if they were experiencing similar issues in their departments. A large number of faculty agreed that it was a problem.

Senior Associate Dean Kevin Guskiewicz (Arts & Sciences) said that he has been working with the Office of Sponsored Research to look into the issue and would follow up with the provost.

Chancellor Folt commented that she had attended a meeting with business leaders from Research Triangle Park and they are investing heavily in more incubator space. She pointed out that the demand for more space is a regional interest.

Chair of the Faculty’s Remarks and Question Period

Prof. Jan Boxill thanked the chancellor and her new cabinet. She also attended the lecture by Dr. Fuse-Hall and enjoyed it. She suggested that the faculty join Prof. Tim McMillan on his “Black and Blue Tour,” which highlights the contributions that African-Americans have made to the development of the university.

Prof. Boxill said that she has been working with WCHL news reporter Aaron Keck to highlight faculty work across campus. They are planning to highlight ten different research projects on Mr. Keck’s radio program.

Prof. Boxill reminded the faculty to nominate candidates for chair of the faculty for the three-year term beginning July 1, 2014. The link to the survey is available on the Faculty Governance website and the deadline is December 1, 2013. She announced that the Edward Kidder Graham Award nomination deadline has been extended and encouraged the faculty to nominate worthy colleagues.

Prof. Boxill reminded the faculty to pay attention to the recent email announcing VPN-only access to ConnectCarolina from off-campus computers. She invited Prof. Jim Porto (Public Health), chair of the Faculty Information Technology Advisory Committee, to briefly summarize the action steps they will need to take to ensure they are able to upload grades at the end of the semester.

Prof. Porto explained that the university’s current firewall is starting to break down because of the high volume of security threats. The new system will require faculty to install VPN for off-campus access to ConnectCarolina or connect to UNC-Secure wireless network for on-campus access. He said that ITS will offer 24/7 assistance for faculty who contact the helpdesk.

Prof. Boxill thanked the Honor System liaisons who attended the November training. She announced that there will be another training in February. A Sakai site with training materials and information about the Honor System has been created and is accessible to liaisons. She said there are plans to add department chairs and deans to the Sakai site. Prof. Boxill said that some departments and units still don’t have liaisons and that there is an urgent need for faculty to volunteer to serve on hearings boards. She reminded the faculty that they initiated the honor system reforms and in order for them to be successful, faculty must volunteer to serve. The more volunteers who are recruited, the fewer cases individuals will be responsible for and less the time commitment will be for faculty.

Prof. Boxill solicited nominations for two faculty members to serve on the Student Affairs Grievance Committee and one faculty member to serve on the Carolina Union Board of Directors. She asked the faculty to email her any nominations.

Finally, Prof. Boxill explained that the Faculty Assembly has been working hard to implement the Strategic Plan. She has invited President Tom Ross to attend the Faculty Council meeting in December and is awaiting his reply. She said that Resolution 2013-17 (to be considered later in this meeting) is a part of the work that is being done to implement the Strategic Plan.

Mr. Wilson Parker (Undergraduate Observer) asked Prof. Boxill if she has begun recruiting faculty for hearings panels.

Prof. Boxill replied that she is currently relying on department chairs and public announcements to recruit.

Mr. Parker encouraged the Council members to contact their Honor System student liaison to present information about the Honor System to departments.

Reports Received by Title

The Faculty Grievance Committee Annual Report, filed by Prof. Andy Bechtel (Journalism and Mass Communication) and Libby Chenault (University Libraries), the Faculty Hearings Committee Annual Report, filed by Prof. Diane Juffras (Law), and the Faculty Research Committee Annual Report, filed by Prof. Gary Cuddeback, were received by the Council. There were no questions or comments.

Faculty Athletics Representative Annual Report

Prof. Lissa Broome (Law), Faculty Athletics Representative, explained her role as an advisor to the chancellor on athletics and a liaison to the faculty. She invited the faculty to contact her with questions and concerns about athletics.

Prof. Broome briefly explained measures used to track student-athlete academic performance: the Graduation Success Rate (GSR), the Academic Performance Rate (APR), and the Federal Graduation Rate (FGR). She said that the women’s soccer team had a 67% GSR, partially as a result of players leaving the university to play professionally. Despite the low GSR, women’s soccer had a much better APR. The APR in 2011-12 was 962. Prof. Broome explained that an APR of at least 930 is desirable.

Prof. Broome reported that 10 out of 24 teams had a 100% GSR. The FGR for students receiving aid is 72% compared to 88% for all students. Eight out of 24 teams exceeded the UNC student body FGR rate. Five out of 28 teams had APRs in the top 10% of their sport nationally. Prof. Broome said that Amber Brooks, a women’s soccer player, will receive a 2014 NCAA top ten award for achievement in academics, athletics, and community service. She is a four-year starter and will have her jersey number retired at the end of the year.

Prof. Broome said that the past year was significant. There were five reports written on athletics issues. The Department of Athletics and the Academic Support Program for Student-Athletes (ASPSA) were restructured. The Department of Athletics adopted a strategic plan calling for better alignment between the department and the mission of the university. The ASPSA now reports directly to the provost. Provost Dean created the Student-Athlete Academic Initiative Working Group that began meeting on August 20, 2013. The Faculty Athletics Committee created new roles for its members. In addition, the university recruited Dr. Michelle Brown to lead the ASPSA. She said that new leadership and reorganization will allow the university to consider athletics issues from a fresh perspective.

Faculty Athletics Committee Report

Prof. Joy Renner (Allied Health), chair of the Faculty Athletics Committee, presented the committee’s  Annual Report. She reported that over the past year, the committee has gone through changes in format and function. The committee’s members have become experts in topical areas and act as liaisons between the committee and athletics teams. The committee monitors athletics and works to ensure that student-athletes at Carolina have a good experience.

Prof. Renner said that communication surrounding athletics issues has strengthened with regular reports to the Faculty Council. The committee is planning to post more resources about athletics that are of interest to faculty on the Office of Faculty Governance website. They plan to post meeting minutes, information about key people on campus, an overview of ASPSA structure and the current advising system, and resources for faculty.

Prof. Renner said that the committee has reviewed many areas of interest, including admissions procedures, advising and academic support, the student-athlete experience, policies and procedures, and administration and operations. She said that the committee believes the procedures in place for student-athlete admissions are working well. They are planning to analyze past admissions data to look at the relationship between that data and class performance. They will prepare a report in the spring.

Prof. Renner said that the committee had discussed several changes to academic support and advising. Among those changes are enhanced academic support plans for individual athletes, a new APR improvement group, and an improved relationship with Academic Advising. In the future, the committee plans to identify challenges in advising and academic support and consider the challenges and benefits of athletic participation on student performance.

The committee also considered the student-athletes’ experiences on campus. They redesigned online exit surveys and are planning to analyze trends affecting the student-athlete experience. Prof. Renner said that the committee discussed academic policies and reviewed the Department of Athletics budget and new administrative structure. The committee will create a plan to improve public reporting of expenditures related to student-athletes.

Prof. Renner posed the question of whether athletics culture has become one that is both fair and just. She said that we have to look at the overall athletics structure to find the answer. She said that she believes we are closer to creating a just culture and that UNC has zero tolerance for reckless behavior.

New Functionalities in ConnectCarolina

Mr. Chris Derickson, University Registrar, announced that some important changes for faculty have been implemented in ConnectCarolina and he encouraged faculty to go to the University Registrar’s website for more information. He said that faculty are now able to upload grades from spreadsheets and that ConnectCarolina has been integrated with Sakai to make the process for importing grades easier.

Report from the Faculty Assembly Delegation on System-wide Core Competencies

Prof. Beth Kurtz-Costes (Psychology), chair of the Faculty Assembly Delegation, and Prof. Jan Boxill presented Resolution 2013-17 On Affirming the Core Competencies of Critical Thinking and Written Communication as Fundamental Requirements for Successful Mastery in All Academic Disciplines on behalf the Faculty Executive Committee.

Prof. Kurtz-Costes explained that the core competencies proposal stems from the Strategic Plan’s goal to strengthen academic quality. The plan recommends the development and assessment of core competencies. She said that these core competencies differ from the SACS competencies for different departments. Last April, President Ross appointed three committees made up of faculty and administrators from across the system to implement the plan. The General Education Council is responsible for identifying competencies. Prof. Abigail Panter (Psychology) and Prof. Valerie Pruvost (Romance Languages) currently serve on the Council representing UNC-Chapel Hill.

Prof. Kurtz-Costes said that 285 faculty members responded to a survey last year that asked them to identify and rank which core competencies are most important. The top two were critical thinking and written communication. The resolution presented to the Faculty Council proposes the adoption of those two competencies.

Prof. Boxill added that the resolution is written to ensure that Educational Policy Committee will have input on how the competencies are defined and assessed.

Prof. Ferrell asked if there was any discussion or debate.

Prof. Steve Bachenheimer (Microbiology and Immunology) said that he agreed with the competencies, but the assessment might be problematic. He said that there has been a tendency at General Administration (GA) to want uniformity throughout the system. He asked how the competencies will be assessed at Chapel Hill.

Prof. Panter said that the discussions about assessment are still in the early stages. The General Education Council is unsure whether there will be a nationally-administered standardized test like the College Learning Assessment (CLA) or separate assessments designed by constituent universities. The Council is also discussing whether the assessments should be quantitative, qualitative, or a mixture of both. The Council is working on recommendations for submission to GA in January 2014.

Prof. Bachenheimer said that UNC-Chapel Hill would like to maintain maximum control over assessment.

Prof. Ferrell explained that the resolution asserts that local faculty at each institution are in charge of their own assessments.

Prof. Panter added that the core competency assessment would not replace current assessments.

The resolution was adopted without dissent.

Results from the 2013 Undergraduate Alumni Survey

Prof. Karen Gil, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and Dr. Lynn Williford, assistant provost for institutional research and assessment, presented the results of the 2013 alumni survey.

Dean Gil explained that the Board of Trustees Visioning Committee requested the survey. The committee included Dr. Williford, trustees, faculty, students, and community members.

Dr. Williford said that this is the first survey that has been administered to alumni in more than ten years. They surveyed undergraduate students who graduated five and ten years ago to acquire information about the status of their career and educational progress.

Prof. Joe Ferrell (Government) asked what surprised Dr. Williford and Dean Gil the most about the results.

Dean Gil said that they were surprised at the percentage of students going on to graduate and professional schools. She said the number of students who said they wished they had traveled abroad was also surprising.

Dr. Williford added that 62% of those surveyed who didn’t study abroad said they wished they had.

Dean Gil said she was struck by how much alumni valued experiential education in light of recent critiques of the university’s curriculum in the media.

Prof. Greg Copenhaver (Biology) said that the survey results highlight a gap between the legislature’s push toward job market preparedness immediately upon graduation and what students are actually preparing for. He said that presenting these numbers might help make a case for how we train students.

Prof. Jim Porto (Public Health) asked if it is possible to get a representative sample and follow up to get more information.

Dr. Williford said that her office is planning to follow up with some of the respondents and they are also interested in finding out more information from alumni who chose not to respond.

Prof. Deborah Stroman (Exercise and Sport Science) asked if the Council could see the data broken down by gender, residency, and ethnicity.

Dean Gil said that data is available for further analysis.

Prof. Neil Caren (Sociology) asked if alumni identified some areas the university should target for improvement.

Dean Gil replied that the survey did not identify  areas that appeared to need improvement.

Prof. Tim McMillan (African, African American, and Diaspora Studies) said he was surprised by the high number, two-thirds, of students surveyed who said the worked for pay while they were enrolled as students.

Dr. Williford pointed out that the survey captured work for pay over the summer and in between semesters.

Special Report of the Committee on Honorary Degrees and Special Awards

Prof. Joseph Ferrell, Secretary of the Faculty, moved that the Council go into closed session to consider nominees for Distinguished Alumna and Alumnus Awards to be presented on University Day 2014. The motion was adopted.

On behalf of the Committee on Honorary Degrees and Special Awards, Prof. Ferrell presented five nominees. Each nominee was approved.


Prof. Ferrell moved that the Council return to open session. The motion was adopted. Having completed its business, the Faculty Council adjourned at 5:00 pm.

Respectfully submitted

Kathryn M. Turner
Executive Assistant

Joseph S. Ferrell
Secretary of the Faculty

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