NORTH CAROLINA STATE UNIVERSITY
GENERAL FACULTY MEETING
APRIL 2, 1998
3712 BOSTIAN HALL
1. Welcome and Opening Remarks
The meeting was called to order at 3:15 p.m. by George H. Wahl, Jr., Chair of the Faculty.
Chair Wahl welcomed everyone to the meeting.
2. Approval of Minutes, November 10, 1997, General Faculty Meeting
The minutes were approved without dissent.
3. Status of Major Issues
A. Phased Retirement
Assistant Provost Bruce Mallette reported that the Phased Retirement Plan is being implemented. He stated that 417 packets were mailed out to eligible faculty under the eligibility rules, which are if you are tenured faculty and are sixty years of age with five years of contributory service or, if you are fifty years old with twenty years of contributory services, you are eligible. He stated that they had five information sessions. In the sessions they had a power point show which explained the history of the plan, where it came from and the operational aspects as well as the impact of benefits. He stated that the Office of Academic Personnel Services as well as the Benefits Department has been working long and hard to be prepared to administer this because our guide lines were not approved by GA until February 24. The deadline for application in this first year is April 15.
Assistant Provost Mallette reported that the application process and information sessions will begin in mid August for year two of the phased retirement. There were thirty seven persons who attended the information session. He noted that they also have a web site. From the Provost's Homepage there is a section called Phased Retirement (new). This site contains the same information that was included in the packets that were mailed. Anyone who would like to receive a packet can do so by calling 515-2193 or by E-mailing Assistant Provost Mallette.
B. Plus/Minus Grading
Senior Associate Provost Frank Abrams reported that when the decision was made to institute plus/minus grading in 1993-94 to begin in the 1994-95 academic year, the provision was made that during the following three years there would be a study conducted to examine the impact and use of plus/minus grading. There was a review. The Faculty Senate armed with that information has carefully studied the issue of plus/minus grading during this academic year and has recommended that beginning in the fall, that the grading scale of NC State University be the full plus/minus scale with the A+ valued. That recommendation was consistent with concerns of students and many faculty with regard to issues that arose about the A+ not carrying a value and also with regard to the fact that courses that were not with common test and common final exams could conceivably be taught by different faculty members who would use a different scale. They have recommended that there would be one scale. The other part of the recommendation is that in the computation of GPAs, A+ would count up to 4.0. The GPA would be capped at 4.0. That recommendation has been endorsed by the University Council and will be implemented in the fall.
Question: Will the GPA for students who are currently on campus be recalculated to reflect the new scale?
Associate Provost Abrams responded, "no, only for grades awarded in the fall and thereafter." He stated that the issue was discussed in the University Operations Council which is the Associate Deans and Directors of the major academic support and service office on campus. The opinion was that evaluating grades under a new scale, that were awarded under the old scale, would not be fair.
C. Chancellor Search
Chair Wahl believes a new Chancellor will be announced before the end of the semester. He stated that the process was a very interesting one. One that allowed him to meet and understand some people that he never understood before. He noted that athletics is one major area that is misunderstood by many. He felt that getting to understand their perspective was very valuable.
Question: Will the candidates be introduced?
Chair Wahl responded, "no, the candidates would rather remain anonymous."
Senator Monahan would like to know where the process will go from the Search Committee.
Chair Wahl responded that the process is that the Search Committee, which has been aided by a Search Firm was to report to the Board of Trustees who serve as the selection committee. They will send a number of names to the President of the UNC System.
Senator Monahan wanted to know if the announcement would occur at the next Board of Trustees meeting.
Chair Wahl responded that he feels that a final decision will be made by the next meeting of the Board of Trustees.
D. Faculty Roles in University Governance
Chair Wahl reported that the Faculty Senate is proceeding to get new people involved in University Governance. The elections are completed for the Athletics Council and the Faculty Assembly. The candidates have been chosen for the new Chair-Elect of the Faculty. Chair Wahl introduced Frederick T. Corbin, Secretary of the Senate, and Dennis M. Daley, Chair of the Personnel Policy Committee as the two candidates.
Chair Wahl stated that post tenure review is another item that is currently on the table. Something that has generated some interest is that there was serious faculty involvement. The status is that it has been brought to the university council and they suggested that there were a couple of items that needed more discussion. The Chancellor/Provost organized a group consisting of two faculty, two department heads, and two deans. The group will be reporting back to the Faculty Senate and the University Council.
Chair Wahl reported that Megan Callahan, from the Student Senate, composed and distributed campus wide a resolution that was well researched on Diversity and Affirmative Action at NC State University. The Faculty Senate's Academic Policy Committee is currently reviewing it. Anyone with comments should contact Harriette Griffin, Chair of the Academic Policy Committee.
Chair Wahl stated that the Eva Klein Report came to the University Administration as a whole. The Deans and Vice Chancellors have found some common ground and begun meeting and trying to develop a statement. It is currently in its second or third draft. Another draft will begin in mid April. He stated that the focus is currently on the NC State Model which is not directly related to the Eva Klein Report but historically came from it.
Chair Wahl reminded the Faculty that the Senate will be recommending the faculty members for the various University committees on campus to the Committee on Committees.
4. Questions and Answers
Question: Would someone discuss the situation that was once considered as the Deans Scholarship?
Provost Stiles responded that the goal of the Dean Scholarship was part of our approach to diversity. The goals of what we were trying to do in the university, in terms of the number of students of diverse backgrounds, is still not there. We are still aiming for it and will have a procedure this year that we think will work for this year, but it must be tied to the future. The answer is we do not know. We are going to do two things to end with the kind of diverse class that we think is best for all students and to show that the intention of the university is to continue its great progress that it has had from the time of the 1960's and 70's. We have to find out within discussions with the university a procedure that we can have for a long term.
5. Perspectives on NC State Opportunities Under New Leadership
In his remarks to the General Faculty on April 2, 1998, Chancellor Larry Monteith discussed the history of NC State, including the many achievements that have occurred in the last 30 years, and the opportunities ahead for growth and improvement. He began by discussing his experience as an NC State student, and related that experience to the opportunities under new leadership.
"When I first enrolled at NC State in history, I thought that knowing the exact date of everything was very important. But, I was failing. My professors told me that I needed to understand the flow of human ideas and events and to put them in the approximate context of date. So, today I am going to give you the flow of institutional events. Though the dates may not be exact, I believe my context and summary are correct."
"I want to talk about the opportunities under new leadership by reflecting on NC State's personality. It's important to understand our background in order for new leadership to take advantage of future opportunities."
"As we all know, NC State was founded in the late 1880's. In 1894, we awarded our first graduate degree in chemistry. Did you know that in nearly forty years from 1894 to the early 1930's, NC State had already awarded a Ph.D. degree? At that time, NC State had trustees and degrees in journalism and business. We had a president, not a chancellor. We created colleges and combined business and science because we had business degrees and were in the science business. Also, we had the traditional land-grant programs of agriculture, engineering and textiles."
"NC State developed as rapidly as many land grants in the east. Had there not been an interruption in our development, more than likely we would have moved along that trajectory and would have had a different university today. In the early 1930's, after thirty years of growth, suddenly we were no longer a free-standing university, but a college within a greater university. It was as though we were physically located in Chapel Hill. We no longer had trustees. We had neither a chancellor nor president. We had no graduate school. We had engineering, agriculture and textiles, and everything we had was in one of those colleges. We had engineering physics, applied math, agriculture and textile chemistry. If you were a member of the graduate faculty and supervised a thesis, your student received a degree from UNC Chapel Hill and not from NC State."
"We went through a period of thirty years as a very different campus. In the late 1940's, we again had a chancellor. But, it wasn't until 1960 that we really started to change. Our graduate school was coming back to NC State. We had degrees in applied physics and were beginning to think in the direction of re-establishing sciences. Due to the leadership of the dean of engineering and others, we were beginning to recommit ourselves to the humanities in a significant way. There had been an awakening that technical people could not survive on technology alone."
"Think what has happened since the 1940's: We have created the Colleges of Humanities and Social Sciences, Education and Psychology, Forest Resources, Design, Management, Physical and Mathematical Sciences and Veterinary Medicine. We put significant resources in building the infrastructure around seven colleges. Can you imagine the enormous energy that we have expended to bring online all these new things that give us the kind of campus we now enjoy?"
"We went from Forest Resources being in Agriculture and Design in Engineering to their own standing colleges. Management grew from Humanities and Social Sciences, and Veterinary Medicine was formed as a result of growth in Animal Science. In the 1960's, the National Science Foundation granted us a Center of Excellence Grant. An NSF review found that we were not doing a good job in graduate education. In fact, ‘inferior' is the word I believe they used. NSF gave us $9 million for programs throughout our campus, and we began to implement Ph.D. degrees in some of our traditional programs."
"Today, NC State has 80 centers and institutes. That's over half the total for all University of North Carolina institutions. Many of NC State's centers are interdisciplinary, generated by faculty interest across college and school boundaries. We have grown in external research from approximately $5 million in the 1960's to $120 million. Our library ranks 42nd; in the early 1960's we were not even in the research library rankings. Now, more than 25 of our Ph.D. programs are highly ranked among leaders in the southeast; in the last review, that number was 12. NC State has a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. We now are in the top 10 in industry-funded research and the top 30 in research funding nationally. SAT scores of our undergraduates are approaching 1200; in many colleges, the average is over 1200. Eighteen of our faculty are members of the National Academies of Sciences and Engineering."
"We have had enormous support from the private sector, including the Park Foundation support of scholarships and the Kenan fund. I learned today that the Campaign for NC State Students has raised our endowments for undergraduates to more than $71 million. We have almost 20 months to raise the $9 million to reach our $80 million goal. This illustrates to me the enormous accomplishments of just 25 to 30 years."
"What can you look forward to under new leadership and what might you expect that new leader to do? You need to have your success validated. This institution's productivity is within the mean of all the institutions of the Association of American Universities. The AAU is reconsidering its membership and criteria. I believe we should be in AAU, because it is important for us to illustrate our success by benchmarking against the very best. You need to go to work as faculty and help our young graduates be more competitive for Rhodes Scholarships. We need to figure out how to do that. The faculty have to be engaged continuously in helping to identify and prepare students to be successful."
"We need our endowment to grow. Although it has risen from $40 million to $200 million during my tenure, it is about a third of what it needs to be to support the aspirations of this institution. Our new leadership has wonderful opportunities ahead because we have discovered that private individuals will donate money to NC State. Five years ago, we had never asked or received $1 million from anyone. Last week, the College of Forest Resources received $1.5 million. Many of the most successful people in North Carolina are graduates of NC State. I hope that our new leadership will continue to work to find those who want to be leaders in the building of our endowment. Our endowment needs to be $600 million, not $200 million. That would make us among the top 30 public institutions in the country. With what we have in the bank, we would be able to award 2,500 merit scholarships every year. Are you ready to issue a challenge to reach that level? We should get ready because we want that supply line to keep coming."
Chancellor Monteith also discussed the needs and expectations of the NC State community of the future.
"Will our community be diverse and foster a climate of success for all? It seems to me that success does not come equally. Not on our campus, not in the public at large. If we cannot be a community that creates equal opportunity for success, we are not going to be a community that provides the leaders this state has a right to expect."
"All of our undergraduate and graduate programs are going to have to be the best in North Carolina. We cannot be second, third, fourth or fifth. We have to pick those areas of expression where we can truly be the best in our state. Although we have competition, we need to find the areas where we can be the best. All NC State programs need to be among the top 10 percent in the southeast. We need to lead the southeast. Ten percent of our programs should rank among the top 10 in the country. That is the ‘pinnacle-of-excellence' approach that I believe NC State is going to have to consider. Not every program is going to be a top 10 program. However, if no programs are in the top 10, then the entire institution does not rise."
"Our numbers of faculty in the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering must increase. As our membership increases, those faculty can elect other NC State faculty. That is how successful campuses have such large numbers."
"At Centennial Campus, we will know we are successful when large groups want to come and study and benchmark their programs with us. National and international organizations will want to hold their meetings at NC State. Your colleagues will come here for those meetings because this is an environment they will want to visit."
"There is one area in which we have a distinct disadvantage. This century, we have focused on physical science. We have learned so much about physical science that we could almost threaten the world's existence. Now, we are backing away and are figuring how to take that knowledge and do better. Think of the next century. We will be preoccupied with the human being so that we can help to alleviate disease and suffering. NC State does not have a well-coordinated focus on human science. One of our greatest challenges will be to sharpen that focus in the next century, but without a hospital. One idea is to designate the Vet School as a Centennial Campus annex so we may encourage faculty and programs concentrating on human science to develop in a coordinated way."
"On the North Campus, we must continue our progress with the master plan. In 20 years, we need to see fewer cars. The North Campus should not be only for classes, but should be a community where students live. We can change the environment for students."
"Our greatest challenge is to create a new sense of community. We are facing questions about how to get along, how to form a community that helps each other be successful. If universities cannot do that, if universities cannot air the diversity of ideas--even the ideas and experiences which you strongly disagree with--how can universities influence the society outside our boundaries? Our campuses must graduate people who are liberally educated: liberated from their prejudices, from their fears of the unknown, and liberated to the extent that they can take responsibility to be productive in life. If we can create that kind of community, then certainly we can, by example, help the rest of our state and the nation."
"Our diversity plans must be in place. We are challenged to do that. We have to do that. The way we behave in the coming years depends upon programs and colleges getting down to business and really working so that NC State is representative of the people of North Carolina. It is an ongoing process. We started this movement toward diversity about a year ago, and we are moving along the track to be much more aggressive in this new era with these new ideas."
"The building of community is probably the greatest opportunity for leadership. I believe that I was selected to be Chancellor because I knew our history and the university was calling on someone who could help to unite us again. We were divided over the issue of athletics, divided because of the questioning of our integrity. I would like to think that maybe I got this wonderful opportunity because I had that perspective."
"Our new leadership needs to have a clear vision of what we can be...a leader who has the ability to lead by words and deeds and motivate us by very careful and thoughtful understanding of this institution's potential."
"I believe that the topics I have shared today are going to be many of the ingredients of NC State's vision. But, it is ultimately going to be the new Chancellor who has to stand before you and say, ‘this is our vision. Why don't you join me?' I will join from afar, but I will be clapping and helping as much as I can."
"I want to thank you for the great opportunity that I have had and for all that you have done. Many of you are Faculty Senate members. We have had many more agreements than differences. We have found good ways to deal with our differences and that has helped the institution. Thank you for coming today and letting me share with you some of the ideals that come to the front of my thinking about the new leadership for NC State."
Chair Wahl thanked Chancellor Monteith for his remarks.
Chair Wahl thanked everyone for attending and adjourned the meeting at 4:30 p.m.