Millersville University, Faculty Senate



September 19, 1995

Prior Minutes
...| Chairperson | Student Senate | APSCUF President | President | VP Acad Affairs | VP Student Affairs |
Committee Reports
...| UCPRC | General Education Review | Proposed Courses |
...| Senate Elections

Chairperson D. Eidam called the meeting to order at 4:05 p.m. in Chryst Hall, Room 210. All departmental senators attended except Educational Foundations. Student President E. Kobeski, T. Miskelly, and J. Ishler attended for the Student Senate. C. Blaettler attended for the Snapper.


Senate approved the 5 September 1995 meeting minutes with the following corrections. On page 3838, Academic Standards Committee, the committee chairperson, J. Piperberg made some corrections: for the time MU admitted five students back under the new academic amnesty program. Piperberg noted other corrections to the committee report also. On page 3840, under Course Approvals, for ECON 327 delete the words: "Liberal Arts Core."


Chairperson's Report

Chairperson D. Eidam discussed the last Senate meeting election results. The election counters had to flip a coin to decide two votes. However, Senate had a majority in every contested election. If Senate dislikes the new voting system, it can always go back to the old one.

The Fall commencement speaker will be an MU graduate, Paul Evanko, Commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police. The Chairperson received correspondence that C. McLeod resigned as a Senator but his department subsequently reelected him to fill out the remainder of his term. The UCPRC Chair is technically vacant. Senate by unanimous consent could reinstate Senator McLeod. There will be an election at the next Senate meeting for the Chairperson of the UCPRC. Candidates must be Senators. Professor D. Williams informed the Chairperson that she did not intend to be nominated for a position on the UCPRC, so that position is vacant. An election will be held for that position next meeting.

Senators who want to put items on the agenda must give them to the Secretary by noon on the Monday following a meeting. Please send all Senate Committee minutes to the Senate Chairperson so he can be a clearinghouse for all minutes.

Student Senate

Student Senate President E. Kobeski said the Student Senate held its first meeting, 7 September, and for the first time it was televised by cable. One event Student Senate will have this year is a Leadership Conference. Student Senate had its committee elections at the last meeting (See Attachment A). The shuttle bus is working well and ridership is up. Kobeski contacted someone from Penn State who is organizing a lobbying effort.

Senate Chairperson Eidam noted that Senate Committee Chairpersons may reach their student members by contacting them at the addresses shown on the attached address list. (See Attachment A).

APSCUF President

APSCUF President S. Centola said he came to Senate today to discuss the interim curriculum measures introduced by the Administration and jointly agreed to by the APSCUF leadership. Centola tried to explain what the agreement means from his perspective. Last Spring it came to the APSCUF's leadership attention that MU and its faculty were about to face a difficult time as an institution.

President Caputo spoke about this during his convocation address. MU is facing the greatest fiscal crisis it has ever faced. The political pressures that are exerted upon our supporters in the Legislature compound this awareness. Public institutions are under attack. All this came to us locally when MU's Provost came to Senate and announced changes in the number of students in classes and the amount of writing that faculty could expect of students. With the fiscal constraints, the political problems, the increased number of students, and the curriculum changes, APSCUF was concerned that working conditions could be drastically affected.

APSCUF engaged in a number of meetings with the Administration last Spring to try to reach in agreement that would help ease the burdens on the institution and faculty temporarily. APSCUF also agreed that various task forces could be established to study several things including the general education curriculum. The aim is to determine what other measures can be taken to increase the cost effectiveness of the program. As a result of the deliberations, APSCUF reached an agreement involving the suspension of the W courses. Centola said that he had originally advocated introducing more writing into the general education program. As he heard from his peers, hoever, faculty in some cases had thirty or forty students in writing courses. Since APSCUF cannot negotiate class size with the Administration, there is nothing APSCUF can do about the large number of students in classes. Most universities around the country do not set the number of pages of writing as a specific writing requirement. A writing reduction would ease the faculty's burdens as the student enrollment increases in the W courses.

APSCUF also agreed to drop one of the two perspectives course requirements. APSCUF was alarmed by the increased enrollments in classes and actively tried to fight against it. APSCUF would like to see the perspective requirement returned to its original status in the future. When APSCUF agreed to accept a one perspective course requirement, it recognized the savings to the Administration. Another measure was a moratorium on new general education courses until the task forces could investigate their resource implications.

There was a fourth measure. the Administration agreed to keep low enrollments in certain courses such as freshmen and advanced composition classes, speech classes, perspectives classes and lab courses where the quality of the instruction and interaction would be affected. MU needs certain low enrollment courses to maintain the integrity of its curriculum. Centola said that these measures are short term. APSCUF did not want to supersede the Senate, but working conditions were involved. APSCUF respects the work of the task forces.

Administrative Officers


President J. Caputo discussed the interim curriculum changes. the Administration is committed to the fact that these changes are interim measures. The game plan is to take a holistic review of all interim measures. What about the moratorium on new courses and on those that are currently in the pipeline? Caputo said that he will not authorize any new courses that he has not already authorized. If he has not already signed off on a course, he is not going to do so. Caputo said if there is a very special case, a pressing need, for a course, the Administration would support it. The financial circumstances of the institution are precarious. It is not clear what is driving MU's costs and lowering our productivity. MU plans to analyze the cost and lowered productivity problems very closely. Because of the need to allocate University resources more efficiently, the faculty needs to examine its curriculum more closely. If MU allowed new courses while doing the study, that could affect the results of the study.

When Caputo first came to MU, he was widely quoted as saying that the faculty needed to improve the curriculum. He was struck by the fact that at the time MU's single universal course requirement was a swimming course. There was no other course universally required. Through a series of task forces in the 1980s, MU succeeded in improving its curriculum. The improvements made some faculty unhappy; some retired faculty today are still bitter about the curricular changes. However, MU did succeed in creating a curriculum that had majority faculty support. Caputo is committed to MU doing that again. MU will reach a consensus about what the changed curriculum should be. Caputo pledged to Senate that a handful of people will not determine a new curriculum. The former curriculum was not the President's first choice. In forming the changed curriculum, the President's views will represent only one person. APSCUF and members of the Administration will negotiate in the coming weeks.

Caputo said that he spent the morning at the WGAL studios. WGAL held a mini-community planning conference for its own purposes. It is planning a one to two year program featuring education matters. It invited a large group of people including educators from Harrisburg and Lancaster to attend. Caputo was impressed with the amount of money WGAL will spend on the project. Caputo expects WGAL to look at the positive side of education. WGAL is aware that there is a great deal of misunderstanding of education and deep societal forces impinging upon it.

There was a signing ceremony in which WGAL gave its entire library of film and videotape from 1948 to virtually the present to MU. The library will become a rich research and instructional resource for MU and will be stored in a renovated Myers Hall.

Vice-President for Academic Affairs

Provost F. McNairy said in response to a senator's question that senate has a tradition of not addressing fiscal issues concerning new courses. Since APSCUF does, the administration thought it appropriate to treat these matters as work issues. MU needs to address the financial aspects of new programs. The administration is looking for a way to respect the traditions of the senate and simultaneously incorporate the fiscal implications. The administration intends for jointly agreed to changes to the curriculum to go into effect in January. The senate will receive proper information. The administration will also meet with department chairs to explain how it operates. Until that time, Dean's council will review the fiscal issues such as what are load implications for a department? What are the number of Majors? Mu must investigate the course proposal format. Senate need not take a stand on fiscal issues.

McNairy discussed how senate will be involved in the curricular changes. Everyone needs to look at the whole picture. the whole picture is not just general education; it is how does MU move forward as an institution. McNairy reminded senators of President Caputo's convocation speech of a year ago. The world is different now than it was ten years ago. The Provost will come to each school wide meeting. She will discuss what is happening now, look at where MU can go in the future, and ask each senator and his/her department to address a series of ten questions. The questions try to tie in the whole picture: the fiscal realities, the linkages for the future in higher education, the financial possibilities, and how MU prepares the student.

Chairperson D. Eidam commented that the administration will continue to respond in writing to senate's nongeneral education courses. Vice-President for Student Affairs

Vice President for Student Affairs G. Reighard said that a year ago MU announced plans to reorganize the student affair's staff to prepare for the future. MU has done that. Dr. Charlene Yager of the University of Delaware has accepted a position and will join MU on october 30. She has 16 years experience in higher education. Reighard will bring her to senate shortly after she arrives.

Committee Reports

Undergraduate Course and Program Review Committee

Chairperson D. Eidam expressed senate's gratitutde to C. McLeod for the superb job he has done in a challenging position.

General Education Review Committee

Chairperson R. Wismer said the committee met last Tuesday. The committee will do a program review of the current general education program.

Proposed Courses

Under the two meeting rule, senate approved two courses.


Senate Elections

Senate continued its annual elections and elected R. Mainzer as chairperson of the Academic Outcomes Assessment Committee for a term that expires in 1998. If senate does not fill the remaining open positions after one more election, it will declare them vacant.

Chairperson D. Eidam and the secretary noted that it could happen sometime this semester that senate would have no other agenda than the first eight items. If there were no proposed courses and no business agenda should senate meet or not? The parliamentarian gave a personal opinion that there were informational advantages to having the meetings as scheduled. Senator R. Fulmer said he valued the administrative and committee reports. A B.Nakhai/R. Fulmer motion to meet as scheduled passed. Senate adjourned at 5 PM. The next meeting will be Tuesday, 3 October 1995, from 4:05-5:45 p.m. in Chryst 210.

Respectfully submitted,

Marvin Margolis, Secretary
Faculty Senate

Prior Minutes
...| Chairperson | Student Senate | APSCUF President | President | VP Acad Affairs | VP Student Affairs
Committee Reports
...|UCPRC | General Education Review | Proposed Courses
...|Senate Elections

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