March 19, 2018

Printable Minutes

Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes

March 19, 2018
Rudder 601
Call to Order
Speaker Price called the meeting to order at 3:15pm.
Guest Speakers
Speaker:  Dr. Mary A. Covey, Director, Student Counseling Services 
Dr. Covey shared her perspectives about the Student Counseling Center’s most current issues.  Her first goal as the new Director will be to change their service delivery model to deliver more prevention and educational information.  Dr. Covey would also like to dispel the myth, told to faculty by students, that there is a 6-week wait to get in to the Student Counseling Center.  Nine (9) business days has been the maximum wait for any student this semester.  Dr. Covey advises that if a student uses this excuse to avoid being timely in their assignments or to avoid taking an exam, faculty should dissuade that student by referring him or her to the counseling center for “attendance only” reasons as those appointments are readily available.  She believes that timing is everything in getting useful help for a student within that semester. 
Dr. Covey said that students come into the center saying that they need “therapy” but the counseling center is discovering that they really need help in skill acquisitions such as how to be resilient, how to handle failure and how to relax.  Students need to be made aware that the center was not designed for long term counseling – there are limits.  Longer, more complicated, cases are referred back to their previous psychiatrist/psychologist at home. 
The number one complaint among college students today is “anxiety” and it is a skyrocketing national concern.  The TAMU counseling center has had 1,845 student appointments this year compared to only 530 student appointments last year (a 248% increase).  Within the last 5 years, there has been a 29% increase overall in enrolled students who seek counseling. 
The center is trying to provide more faculty support with faculty seminars such as “When Your Stressed Student Stresses You Out”. 
Dr. Covey’s best advice to parents is to tell the student “I believe in you – you can do this” and her best advice to faculty is tell students “it is OK to feel anxious and it is not an anomaly.”
Several questions were asked of Dr. Covey by Senators:
Senator Alvarado (ENGR) asked if there is a hotline.  She advised that during the day faculty can call the counseling office but after hours the Helpline is always available.  However, if a faculty member feels in danger, they should not hesitate to call campus police.  All of these phone numbers are on the back of every University ID.
Senator Irby (EDHD) asked about what services are being made available to on-line students.  Dr. Covey said that there is some self-help information on their website and that they are looking at SAP’s for the satellite campuses.
Senator Braga-Neto (ENGR) asked if there is statistical information available regarding how many students per discipline use their services.  Dr. Covey replied that they have not been keeping that historical information but are looking into that possibility for the future as more than one college has asked for it.
Senator Booth (ARCH) spoke about instilling more aspirational goals in our youth and discussed how that might help their anxiety.  
Approval of Minutes
The February 12, 2018 Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes were approved as submitted.
Consent Agenda:
  1. FS.35.248

            INTA 690 Cybersecurity Literacy for the Global Arena

  1. FS.35.249
FORS 604 Forensic Investigation of Injury
PHEB 620 Cancer Epidemiology
PHPM 604 Population and Public Health for Health Professionals
PHPM 606 Health Systems Management
PHPM 616 Management of Human Resources
PHPM 617 Quality and Process Improvement
PHPM 620 Operations Management
PHPM 623 Health Care Financial Management I
PHPM 640 Health Policy and Politics
PHPM 680 Health Systems Leadership
SOPH 670 Global Public Health Systems and Practice Experiences
WFSC 636 Wildlife Habitat Management
      D.  Change in Curriculum FS.35.250
College of Engineering – Department of Aerospace Engineering
MS-AERO Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering
      E.  Change in Curriculum FS.35.251
            College of Engineering – Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
            MS-CEEN Master of Science in Computer Engineering
            College of Engineering – Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
            MS-ELEN Master of Science in Electrical Engineering   
            College of Engineering – Department of Ocean Engineering
            MS-OCEN Master of Science in Ocean Engineering
  1. FS.35.254
      ENGR 102 Engineering Lab I - Computation
      GEOG 215 Geospatial Cornerstone
      OCEN 311 Fluid Statics and Dynamics
  1. FS.35.255
     ASCC 001 Basic Math Skills
     ASCC 002 Basic Writing Skills
     ASCC 003 Basic Reading Skills
     ASCC 004 Reading-Writing Connection
     ASCC 005 Fundamental Academic Skills       
     ASCC 101 Application of Learning Theories to College Studies         
     ASCC 102 Career Awareness
     ASCC 289 Special Topics in
     CHEM 119 Fundamentals of Chemistry I
     CHEM 120 Fundamentals of Chemistry II
     GEOG 380 Workshop in Environmental Studies
     NURS 323 Nursing Care of Women Families and Newborns
     NURS 411 Evidence-Based Practice for Nurses
     NURS 413 Nursing Care of Children and Families
     NURS 420 Adult Nursing II
     PHLT 302 Foundations of Public Health
     PHLT 470 Global Public Health Systems and Practice Experiences
     RPTS 411 Cruise Tourism
     STAT 301 Introduction to Biometry
     STAT 302 Statistical Methods
     STAT 303 Statistical Methods
     WFSC 300 Field Studies
     WFSC 406 Wildlife Habitat Management
  1. FS.35.256
Texas A&M University at Galveston  
MART 410: Integrated Navigation III - Bridge Watchstanding
K.   Change in Curriculum FS.35.257
            College of Liberal Arts – Bush School of Government
            Department of Political Science – Department of Public Service & Administration
            BS MPS-POLS PSAA-BPS Political Science 5 Year
L.  Change in Curriculum FS.35.258
           College of Engineering – Department of Engineering
           BS-ENGE Engineering
      M.  Change in Curriculum FS.35.259
            College of Agriculture & Life Sciences – Department of Recreation, Park & Tourism
            CERT-CU45 Professional Event Manager - Certificate
N.  Change in Curriculum FS.35.260
College of Agriculture & Life Sciences – Department of Horticultural Sciences                     
CERT-CU61 Enology - Certificate
O. Change in Curriculum FS.35.261
College of Engineering – Department of Engineering
MINOR-CYBR Cybersecurity - Minor
College of Engineering – Department of Ocean Engineering
BS-OCEN Ocean Engineering
College of Engineering – Department of Engineering
BS-AREN Architectural Engineering
College of Science – Department of Chemistry
BS-CHEM-MCT Chemistry BS - Materials Chemistry Track
S.  Miscellaneous Request FS.35.265
College of Engineering
99 BS-ITDE Program Changes for First Year Curriculum ENGR[x] and DP Attainment
  1. February 2018 FS.35.266
           Courses submitted for W Certification:
GEOG 380 Workshop in Environmental Studies
PHIL 415 American Philosophy
Courses submitted for W Recertification
ANTH 415 Anthropological Writing
FREN 300 Written Communication in the French Speaking World
HLTH 481 Seminar in Allied Health
MASE 407 Capstone Design II
Courses submitted for C Recertification
FIVS 435 Case Studies in Problem Solving
IDIS 330 Sales Engineering
__________________________________End of Consent Agenda______________________________
Committee Reports
U.  Core Curriculum Committee – March 2018 - Motion to approve passed. FS.35.267
New Courses:
INTS 215-GE Global Cinema
MUSC 201-GE Music and the Human Experience
ICD Only
ECON 318-ICD The Economics of Gender and Race
Core Recertification:
       ENGL/AFST 204-GE Introduction to African-American Literature
CLAS 251-GE Classical Mythology
Other Committee Reports
Budget Information Committee
Committee Chair, Senator Randy Stewart (VMBS) addressed the committee’s primary focuses this semester:
1)  To better understand the current trends regarding the tuition and fees for undergraduate and   graduate students;
2)  To determine the university administration’s position on out-of-state students;
3)  To clarify President Young’s comments on increased budget allocations for retirement benefits;   
4)  To investigate a perception among faculty members that the academic professional track faculty numbers were increasing over the tenure track faculty numbers.  If this is true, is it being driven by budget considerations?
The committee met last fall with Dr. Jerry Strawser, Executive V.P. and Chief Financial Officer, who pointed out the primary drivers for budget considerations:  1) the continued long-term decline in state appropriations as a percentage of total revenue; and 2) the steady increase in costs of operations seen in higher education institutions nationwide.  Texas A&M University has maintained a very low expenditure rate overall and has minimized increases in tuition and fees.  Revenues consisting of tuition and state appropriations together have stayed well below the common fund higher education price index and despite having one of the lowest rates of state appropriations Texas A&M maintains one of the lowest combined tuition and fee rates of all “Vision 2020” peer institutions.
Tuition increases for graduate and undergraduate students are currently paralleling each other.  Out-of-state students have several options for tuition waivers. 
The university is slowly increasing the number of out-of-state students.  The number of undergraduate students eligible to receive out-of-state tuition waivers will be reduced.
President Young’s comment regarding increased budget allocations for retirement benefits was in reference to the increase in the growth rate in research funding, which caused the underfunding of benefits for the unexpected increase in the number of research staff. 
The University has no plans to changes its’ emphasis regarding the roles or participation of academic professional track and tenure/tenure-track faculty. Currently, there is one academic professional track faculty member to every two tenure/tenure-track faculty members.  The current long-term goal is 65 to 70% tenured/tenure track faculty.
The University does not intend to increase student numbers at this time.  The ratio of students to faculty is currently 20 to 1.
Planning Committee
The Planning Committee has been meeting with Dean Andrew Morriss looking to integrate the faculty into the operations of the I-School.
Research Committee
The Research Committee has been working on an Open Access Policy which would allow TAMU to retain the non-commercial copyright of creative works of TAMU faculty so that the library can publish these works for free from a library-based webpage.  The impact on where faculty publish will be minimal and faculty will have the option to opt-out if they so choose.  More details to come in the very near future.
System Employee Benefits Advisory Committee (SEBAC)
Our self-insured health and dental plans are in good shape.   The $30/month wellness exam credit has generated a 97% employee participation rate which has been beneficial to the health of many employees who, because of these exams, have uncovered problems in an earlier, more treatable and less expensive stage.  June 30th is the deadline for wellness exams for the next academic year.
Informational Review Items - none
Unfinished Business - none
Old Business - none
New Business
V.  Proposed Revisions to Student Rule 10.6 FS.35.268
            Motion to approve passed with no discussion.
Committee of the Whole
Senator Woosley (EDHD) asked if administration could provide the student credit hour percentage per tenure track faculty vs. academic professional track faculty.  This information will be requested and presented at the next Faculty Senate meeting.
Senator Daugherity (ENG) commented regarding the department head retention rule. He stated that although faculty vote is now advisory, to be meaningful it requires that the vote be completed by May 1st.  John August, Dean of Faculties, advised that those May department head reviews were deferred to the fall to conduct full 360 degree reviews and the faculty votes will be considered in the fall semester.
Senator Jasperson (MAYS) commented that the undergraduate curriculum committee at Mays has concerns regarding the implementation timeline on some CD courses.  They feel that there is a rush to approve courses without considering the competency of the faculty that teach those courses.
Senator Wingenbach (AG) addressed the proposed cancellation of some differential tuition fees which many faculty in colleges are funded by.  Some departments were offering courses on-line to our on-campus students and were assessing a distance-education fee.  Only students enrolled in a distance education program are eligible to be assessed these fees. 
The meeting adjourned at 4:50 p.m.