September 15, 1998
Senators present: Chair Wahl, Chair-Elect Corbin, Provost Stiles, Parliamentarian Link, Senators Bernhard, FitzGerald, Brown, Carter, De Buysscher, El-Masry, Fahmy, Funderlic, Gilbert, Griffin, Kimler, Hooker, Knowles, Lewis, Middleton, Monahan, Nagel, Patty, Peel, Robinson, Serow, Siderelis, Suh, Wall, Wilkerson, Willits
Senators absent: Secretary Daley, Senators Bottcher, Fisher, Hamouda, Jewell, Markham, Ollis, Schwab
Visitors: Martha Welch, University Registrar; Daniel Bunce, Assistant Editor, The Bulletin; Rebecca Leonard, Assistant Provost; Seth Whitaker, Student Senate President Pro Tempore; Andrew Payne, Vice President for Academic Policy; Sharon Byrd, Chair, Staff Senate; Bruce Mallette, Assistant Provost; Frank Abrams, Senior Associate Provost; Dan Solomon, Associate Dean, PAMS; Clare Kristofco, Senior Assistant to the Chancellor; Jeff McNeill, Vice Chancellor, University Advancement; Debbie Griffith, Director, News Services; Karen Helms, Director, University Planning and Analysis; James Anderson, Dean, Undergraduate Studies
1. Call to Order
The second meeting of the forty fifth session of the NC State Faculty Senate was called to order at 3:00 p.m. by Chair George Wahl.
2. Welcome and Announcements
Chair Wahl welcomed Senators and Guests.
Chair Wahl announced that the Executive Committee meeting is canceled because it conflicts with the Board of Trustees meeting.
Chair Wahl announced that there will be a welcome reception for Chancellor Fox on September 22, 1998 from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. in the Ballroom of the Tally Student Center.
3. Approval of the Minutes, Meeting No. 1, September 1, 1998
The minutes were approved as amended.
4. Remarks from the Provost
Provost Stiles reported that, as of last fall, NC State is the second highest in salaries among our peers and not much behind Purdue, but significantly behind Purdue in total compensation. He stated that the status of Associate Professors has changed in a year and NC State is now second in that group of Associate Professors' salaries. As it was last year, NC State is the highest in Assistant Professors' salaries and also highest in compensation for Assistant Professors. This reflects the institution's commitment for its future and in trying to attract the best new faculty in the tradition that it has carried out all its life.
Provost Stiles reported that the Legislature is funding extension instruction for credit in a way that it was never funded in the past. The Legislature funded the base of the support so extension instruction is now supported basically like regular term instruction. He stated that this means that we need to develop more extension instruction programs for extension because the state is funding it, not just to make us happy, but for reaching more people in the state.
Provost Stiles reported that NC State University gains in the diversity of its students when it can attract not only students from the state, but those that differ in culture, ethnicity, race, etc. It does not surprise you when the out-of-state tuition rises so rapidly that we have difficulty competing. He stated that there are two ways to compete. One is to have very low tuition, and the second is to have a recognized program of such excellence that people will want to come and pay the tuition. We have to recognize that the Legislature is going to control the level of that tuition. We can push to decrease that tuition, to increase the diversity of our student body and we will do so. At the same time, we have to make sure that our programs of excellence are recognized throughout the country so that the students will want to come here for their education instead of going somewhere else.
Comments from Martha Welch, University Registrar
Martha Welch reported that she and a staff member came to the Faculty Senate with a proposal to implement this academic progress reporting system which she is happy to say is currently available to the faculty. She stated that they have had a few people use the system. It is their hope that it is something that will eventually replace the old mid-semester academic difficulty report now referred to as the academic difficulty report. This week and next week there are sessions for faculty to attend with their school/college to receive information on it. It is a mechanism where a faculty member can send a notice to any student in his/her class. It goes to the student and the student's advisor. The adviser can check the system to see if the student has received a progress report. It is Martha's hope that faculty will use it to help flush out some of the students who are not attending class. She noted that her office will be happy to help with problems that may occur. The number to call for assistance is 515-3084.
Provost Stiles stated that one of the most important issues at NC State is student success. He said when we are talking about student success we are talking about a student's success. It is not good enough to say that a student graduates. If a student graduates and does not find a job, then we may not have been doing our job.
Senator Carter stated that when he came to NC State in 1982, he felt that he left a better university to come here. It is his hope that by the time he retires this is not the case. He feels the only way to achieve more is to set higher standards. He does not think NC State should be compared to Purdue, ISU, and VPI.
Provost Stiles stated that average salaries even at a given level do not tell you what the age distribution is and how many faculty you have, etc. It does not tell you what the mix of disciplines are. One needs to weigh two factors; where we are among the public institutions, and we have as required by General Administration, fifteen peers which includes Berkley. If you look at those, the Assistant Professors are second, third, and fourth, Associate Professors above the half, and full Professors may be at the half or a little below. If we do not dream first, we will never get there. The difficulty is that we need to talk about what our colleges are competing against. There are twenty five or thirty Veterinary Schools. Where we rank Veterinary School versus Veterinary School is more important than how we as an institution rate versus another institution.
5. Back Home In North Carolina
Jeff McNeill, Vice Chancellor for University Advancement, reported that the "Back Home Program" that they are currently using to introduce the new Chancellor is truly the NC State way to go about doing it. We all get absorbed in the things we do on campus. In order for us to meet the fund raising goals for next year that we just established in July, we must raise $295,000 every eight hours of every working day in private gifts. We do a lot of different things, and the faculty need to see first hand the program called "Back Home".
Remarks from Debbie Griffith, Director of News Services
Debbie Griffith stated that NC State has a golden public relations opportunity here introducing our new Chancellor. Also in our favor, she is a very energetic woman scientist who appeals to a great variety of people across the state. She has great ideas about where NC State is going. We also have a built in state wide audience that is interested in what is happening at NC State. We have decided to introduce her to the state, but to use as a vehicle our own students who have been identified as representing the university best. In a series of two day visits across the state, the Chancellor will be going back home with students. There are approximately twenty different locations and approximately 2500 miles round trip that they will be visiting. These visits have started already. The first ones were to Pine Tops and Greenville. The next visit will be in two weeks to Asheville. Following that, they will be visiting the Durham/Raleigh/Garner areas.
Debbie handed out a News Release outlining the cities that they will be visiting and the students who were chosen to take the Chancellor back home.
Debbie noted that another big element of the "Back Home" visits is that in each of the areas visited, there will be alumni gatherings. Each alumnus from NC State that they were able to track received an invitation to attend one of these events.
Debbie observed that the first visit was beyond her expectation. They received very good news coverage. She noted that it has been a very successful campaign so far and hopes that the remainder of the visits will be successful as well.
6. Technology Education In North Carolina
Dr. James Anderson, Dean of Undergraduate Studies, reported that the faculty have probably heard during the last two years, or have read from a litany of individuals about the success of our student athletes. It was reported last year for the first time in the history of NC State, that the six year graduation rate of student athletes surpassed that of the general student population. The actual percentages were 73% for six year graduation rate for student athletes and 67% for the general student population.
Each year the ACC sponsors fifteen post graduate scholarships for student athletes who have demonstrated academic excellence. NC State is the only institution in the last two years to get four of the fifteen. Four students were nominated and each of the students received the $5,000 post graduate scholarship for the institution of their choice. Dean Anderson feels that is an indication of the level of academic excellence that our student athletes are engaging in. He assured the faculty that academic integrity in athletics now is the consistent norm. Dean Anderson stated that every Monday morning he receives a summary of the previous week's activities on student athletes. If he sees on Monday, that a student athlete is not demonstrating responsibility, he calls the Athletics Director and the Coach. It is taken care of immediately. He feels that the academic progress reports are very important.
Andrew Payne, Vice President of Academic Policy for Student Government wanted to know what happens to students who are not student athletes. He feels the other students are not being treated fairly.
Dean Anderson agreed. He invited Andrew to attend the next Dean's Council meeting to raise this issue.
Dean Anderson stated that he is primarily responsible for entering students and student athletes. Since NC State is still a very college centered institution, there are differences across colleges as to how that answer might appear.
Senior Associate Provost Abrams commented that the presentation made by the Registrar should not go unnoticed. It is an opportunity for us as faculty and advisers. The kinds of actions that result from the reports that come through the academic support program of the student athletes is that each faculty adviser will have information if we as teachers choose to supply it.
Dean Anderson reported that the major topic at the December 12 Deans & Vice Chancellors meeting will be the four-year graduation rate at NC State. That will be the first major meeting where they will begin to discuss a plan to raise NC State's four-year graduation rate up to the level of many of its peers, many of whom have Engineering Programs like NC State but still have very high graduation rates.
Dean Anderson stated that there is a group that has been meeting this summer who will deliver a white paper to the Provost, hopefully by the end of October, about the development of a virtual advising and academic success center on our campus.
Senator Gilbert noted that he is the Faculty Representative on the Admissions Committee. He stated that he was shocked to find that there were over 1400 students on academic probation.
Dean Anderson noted that if the students were recorded who are on academic warning, suspension, and other various categories, every year that number would be approximately 3,000 students. Dean Anderson asked advising coordinators from each college to give him a figure that would suggest how many students in their college they feel are not getting effective advising. The number was approximately 5,000 students. Dean Anderson feels that something needs to be developed very rapidly to close that gap. He noted that the figure is not unique to NC State.
Dean Anderson stated that last year we sat down to have a dialog to decide whether or not we should submit a pre-proposal to the National Science Foundation for an initiative that has been ongoing with them concerning shaping the future of undergraduate education in science, mathematics, engineering and technology. In our original pre-proposal, we discussed establishing a National Center. There are only ten National Centers in the country that deal with this topic of reshaping the teaching of undergraduate, secondary, middle school, etc., science, mathematics, technical based courses, etc., as it applies to the development of the world. We decided at that point, maybe we should back off from this pre-proposal of several million dollars to establish a National Center. It might behoove us to sponsor a conference that involved all UNC schools, all fifty eight community colleges, persons from industry, and persons from K through 12. In doing so, we would hope to develop a blueprint for our state and this blueprint would begin to guide us in educational circles, corporate and industrial circles. This is not solely based on focusing on technical, science and mathematics courses, but we really are talking about the development of a learner who has the academic technical and science skills but also integrate liberal learning, ethics and other things that are important for that worker in the new millennium. On October 23-24 we have asked each of the UNC schools, Community Colleges, K through 12, industry, Governors office, General Administration, etc., to send teams of four to five people. We had a steering committee of approximately forty persons come together where we combined these themes and potential outcomes. He noted that this will be a working conference where people will be in sessions for two hours or more at a time working on a subcategory associated with a theme that they choose and then develop, ultimately by the end of that conference and then within a few weeks following, a blueprint that we will offer the state. His perception is that NC State's faculty should be point persons in this effort. This is where NC State needs to be. We also will use that blueprint to develop our full proposal to submit to NSF next year. He plans to keep the faculty abreast of things as they are going through this development.
7. Long Range Enrollment Planning
Karen Helm, Director of University Planning and Analysis, reported that UNC General Administration is projecting that there will be 42,000 additional students who will come into the UNC system over the next ten years. NC State University is currently home to 18% of the University System's total enrollment. She stated that if we continue to take our share of that total enrollment, we would grow to approximately 35,000 students between now and the year 2008. General Administration wants to know what portion of the 42,000 students NC State will take. If NC State chooses not to grow, a lot of its unique programs would not be so unique any more. Should we put emphasis in our traditional programs or should we grow across the board and become more of a comprehensive institution? The Community Colleges and the university system have developed new articulation agreements. Should we become a more upper division and transfer institution or should we continue to try and serve the full range of students from freshmen through senior year? Should we use distance education technologies to absorb some of this growth? If we decided to grow or not grow, in which programs would we grow at the undergraduate or graduate level with new freshmen or transfer? She stated that the answers that we give to these questions can change the whole shape of NC State and what our role is in relation to the other UNC institutions.
Karen stated that General Administration has asked us to make these ten-year projections during each of the last two falls. When we submitted those projections, because of our unique programs, we said that we would absorb our share (18%) of the 42,000 students and grow to 35,000 students. However, when we took a closer look at the feasibility of growing to 35,000 and the resources that would be needed, a lot of questions were raised and consequently Chancellor Monteith tapped a task force to look at those questions and to advise on whether we should grow, what the feasibility of growing is, and what kind of resources would we need in order to grow?
Chancellor Fox has asked for feed-back to the recommendations in the Task Force report. She will present the recommendations to the Board of Trustees in September and she is prepared to revise those recommendations in line with the feed back that she receives from campus and the feed-back she receives from the Board of Trustees.
The Task Force Report
Karen reported that there are two types of resources that are required to support enrollment. Those that increase automatically with an increase in enrollment, and those that include faculty, staff, and operating support. To increase our enrollment, there is an enrollment based funding formula that tells us that the Legislature must give us a larger appropriation to support faculty, staff, and operating funds. If our enrollment declines, they will also take those resources away from us.
Karen stated that the other kind of resources, financial aid, facilities, etc. do not increase automatically with enrollment. For housing, dining, parking, and other receipts based resources, we have some control over increasing those. Students' financial aid, and facilities are the two resources that are most difficult to build in order to support an increase in enrollment. Those are the two resources that the enrollment planning task force identified as the two areas where we have less capacity than we have enrollment. We have insufficient financial aid and space to support our current enrollment. It was difficult to put a number on it. However, as defined by classroom space alone our current capacity is at 25,000 students compared to our enrollment of 27,500. If we try to factor in teaching spaces, our current capacity is even lower than that.
Recommendations from the Task Force
Dr. Dan Solomon, Associate Dean Academic Affairs in the College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, reported that early in the deliberations of the Task Force they reached a consensus that the principal is the quality of NC State's programs. Our challenge as a university is to balance our responsibility for access to our unique programs. Particularly with our responsibilities for ensuring quality of the programs that we offered. Enrollment planning is very complicated, so to simplify the discussion the Task Force identified two key dimensions, the total size and total enrollment of the whole university, and the student mix. According to the charge that Chancellor Monteith gave us, we developed some alternatives for total size and then with each alternative we looked at the various mixes of students and programs.
First the Task Force tried to estimate the current capacity of the university and building capacity. We propose three alternative strategies for total size. Significant growth provides correspondingly large increases in faculty positions and staff positions in operating budgets that allow the growth of existing programs and the development of new programs. Dr. Solomon stated that absolute growth increases our relative rank among peers on measures that are proported to reflect quality such as external funds. Greater growth enhances our ability to meet the demand for our unique programs, diversity objectives are easier to achieve, space for non degree students is easier to maintain and we cannot minimize the fact that there is a political advantage if we choose to grow dramatically of being able to make a strong case for additional facilities while showing that we are doing our share in meeting increase demands. On the downside, it takes a long time to obtain the resources, plan, and get new buildings on line. If we grow dramatically between now and 2010, our instructional space deficit would no doubt worsen. We would not be able to easily raise admission standards if we took our share.
Dr. Solomon stated that if the Task Force was polled, the recommendation would be for moderate growth and by moderate growth they picked the number 31,000 as a target for headcount enrollment in the year 2010. By growing only moderately, we would be taking our share of the projected increase of 42,000 students across the system, while maintaining our 18% share of the university system study body.
Dr. Solomon reported that by growing only moderately, we could gain some additional resources for new and expanded programs while we would argue mediating the impact of space and financial aid limitation. By taking less than our share, we could also increase our selectivity.
The Task Force's charge was to consider a wide range of characteristics of students in programs within a total student body size. They thought about all of the mixed parameters and concluded that in some of them there seems to be rather wide consensus in the university community about what we should do about some of them. Others they thought were much more contentious. They divided the mixed parameters into two groups based on their understanding and reading of prevailing university values. They believe that there is fairly high consensus on four of the mixed parameters. One of them is that they would argue for increasing racial and cultural diversity among the students. Diversity reflects the high value that NC State puts on enriching students' academic experiences with multi-cultural prospectives and experiences, and on ensuring access to qualified students from all major North Carolina sub-populations.
To Increase Graduate Enrollment
This is consistent with NC State's desire to enhance its position as a leading research university with national and international impact.
The Task Force believes there is a consensus on increasing the overall quality of incoming students, including new freshmen, undergraduate transfers, and graduate students. The Task Force appreciates that an enrollment plan based on this principle might limit access by many undergraduates with great promise but who have less distinguished academic records. However, with more experience, those students may enter as transfers from Life Long Education or another institution.
Finally the fourth principle in which the Task Force thinks there is reasonable consensus is an increase in out of state enrollment. They would call as a target for increasing it up to the limit established by the UNC Board of Governors, which is 18% of the entering class as long as non-resident students perform as well or better than the North Carolina students. That principle would enhance the diversity of perspectives essential to a vital academic environment and improve NC State's national visibility.
The Task Force feels that the campus has not yet achieved a high level consensus on other dimensions of student mix, including the proportion of new freshmen versus transfers, of traditional students versus local adults, and of students in various colleges.
In recent years NC State has been enrolling approximately three freshmen for each new transfer student. Should we increase, maintain, or decrease this ratio?
The demand for transfer admission from Community Colleges is expected to increase substantially due to a new articulation agreement between the UNC system and the Community College system. Because articulation has been legislative priority, that has been endorsed by the President and the Governors, restricting community colleges might be a difficult position to maintain. However, the Task Force believes that the appropriate size of the transfer population should depend on student performance, and that has to be monitored carefully.
Dr. Solomon noted that even students with the highest potential may not be ready for higher education. We get students who come to NC State with very strong credentials, yet they flounder. Community Colleges screen those students, and if our transfer admission standards are high enough, pass on to the university only those students who demonstrate their readiness for higher education. Nevertheless, we also think that students should transfer early in their college careers. This too would not be compatible with what the articulation agreement has in mind. The arguments we would advance for urging students to transfer early are two. First, because of the technical nature of many of the programs at NC State, students would be introduced to the required course sequences early. Second, students who arrive early, can be provided stronger and more enduring student/faculty relationships that are less difficult than would a commuting institution with a large proportion of students enrolled for limited portions of their collegiate careers. The students who come here as freshmen are more likely to get involved early on in leadership opportunities to see their upper division colleagues getting engaged in things like graduate research.
The Task Force recommends that transfer enrollment be stabilized if enrollment remains constant. In growth strategies, the Task Force recommends some growth in the number of transfer students in order to ensure access. However, that growth should be at a lower rate than new freshmen, students should be encouraged to transfer early, and the performance of community college transfers should be monitored carefully.
Local Adult Population
Dr. Solomon stated that like transfers, local adults represent a sizeable source of new enrollment. Such students are relatively less reliant on financial aid. They generally prefer evening courses and those are two things that reduce pressure on our two most limited resources. Adults tend to be highly motivated students who seek rewards and have rich experiences to share in the classrooms.
Some adults seek degrees, while others take only courses as Lifelong Education students. Degree-seeking students are treated alike, regardless of age. However, non-degree seeking students, who are most likely to be adults and attend part time, are not given the same priority for classes and other university resources. While non-degree-seeking adults enrich the learning community in many ways and a large number become degree seeking students later, the Task Force believes that degree students must be given a higher priority for campus resources.
Distribution of Enrollment Across the Disciplines
Over the last 15 years, NC State's enrollment has shifted toward social sciences, humanities education, and management and away from science, agriculture, and engineering.
The Task Force affirms NC State's mission statement and believes strongly that a commitment to a comprehensive university of high quality should be maintained regardless of total size. The best technical institutions in this country also have outstanding programs in humanities and social sciences as well.
Senator Knowles wanted to know how much of the increased capacity would be refiguring in many additional courses on Saturdays and evenings.
Dr. Solomon responded that it depends on what happens to the facilities development. At the moment by UNC's calculation, we are approximately 8% shy in classroom space assuming that we meet their efficiency standards which are thirty five hours a week of use in classrooms. For instructional laboratory, the deficit is 28%.
Karen Helm responded that we could increase the number of hours per week that our class rooms are used to squeeze more students in.
Senator Patty wanted to know if the size of some of the institutions that we are aspired to become, have been looked into. He also wanted to know the status of the Eva Klein report.
Dr. Solomon responded that the task force's strategy was to look at the relationship between the resources and enrollment.
Provost Stiles stated that the Eva Klein report will be addressed by the institution.
Senator Gilbert commented that his department received word that Chancellor Fox has already decided on the modern growth figure.
Karen Helm stated that the Chancellor is obliged to forward enrollment projections to the Board of Governors in early November. She will be making some preliminary recommendations to the Board of Trustees this week. Depending on the feedback she receives from the Board of Trustees, Faculty Senate, and the campus at large, she may revise those preliminary recommendations before sending them to the Board of Governors in November.
Senator Knowles wanted to know how the Legislature will react if NC State decides not to take their 18%.
Dr. Solomon responded that there is a study that accesses the capacity in dimensions like classroom and laboratory space across the system. We are one of the few. He noted that three of the institutions are already above the capacity. There is capacity elsewhere existing in the system . We would obviously have to make that case to the Legislature that our growth is constrained by our resources.
Chair Wahl thanked Dr. Solomon and Karen Helm for their report.
8. Unfinished Business
Resolution on Benefits
Senator Serow, Chair of the Personnel Policy Committee proposed an amendment to the resolution which involved support that has been expressed from the Staff Senate. He noted that the language has changed to reflect that support. Senator Serow read the resolution for its second reading.
A motion was made and seconded to adopt the amended resolution. The motion passed without dissent.
Chair Wahl reported that he visited the Faculty Council at UNC Chapel Hill last Friday. He was impressed with Wilson Library. Their Council is twice the size of NC State's. He stated that there is a much larger emphasis there on graduate as well as undergraduate programs whereas NC State tends to focus more on undergraduate programs.
Chair Wahl reported that the Provost Search Committee is doing well. It has been six weeks since there has been a campus-wide call for nominations for a future Provost. The number of nominations to date is 30 to 40 nominees. The add to advertise for a Provost will be finalized tomorrow. There will be two open sessions in the Faculty Senate Chambers on September 28 and October 2.
Senator Griffin reported that the Council on the Status of Women has scheduled its annual "Speakout for Women" concerns for October 20th from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Senator Middleton reported that the Administrative Board of the Graduate School is considering a proposal for the School of Design to offer PhD degrees.
Senator Monahan reported that the Calendar Committee will be meeting in a couple of weeks. He urged the faculty to get things that they like and dislike about the calendar on the agenda.
Senator Hooker reported that the Physical Environment Committee is considering a resolution for the placement of the new academic practice facility. This will be in association with not only sports, medicine, and tutoring faculty, but also men's basketball practice court.
Senator De Buysscher reported that the Institutional, History and Commemoration Committee has discussed the proposal to light the Bell Tower in honor of certain events. The committee supports the concept of this use of the facility with the following suggestions:
1. That regular season basketball and football wins not be included.
2. Some central location for timely announcement of the reason for the celebration would be appropriate.
10. Issues of Concern
Senator Gilbert raised an issue of concern about appointment of graduate faculty, and revision in the application form to become a member of the graduate faculty. The issue of concern is assigned to the Personnel Policy Committee.
Senators Brown and Patty raised an issue of concern about service delivery by University Benefits. Chair Wahl assigned the concern to the Personnel Policy Committee.
Senator Nagel/ Provost Stiles raised an issue of concern on knowing about the NC State student being held for murdering someone when the student was paroled after killing some else.
Chair Wahl assigned the concern to the Academic Policy Committee.
A motion passed to adjourn the meeting at 5:15 p.m.