March 18, 2019

Printable Minutes


TAMU Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes

March 18, 2019


Rudder 601


Speaker Harlin called the meeting to order at 3:15pm.
Speaker Harlin extended a special welcome to members of the Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate at Texas A&M University at Prairie View who were in attendance.
Speaker Harlin introduced guest speaker Dr. John August, Interim Dean of the School of Public Health, former Dean of Faculties.
Dr. John August
Thanked the Speaker and Speaker-Elect for allowing him to be present and reflect on his service as Dean of Faculties (DOF).
  • Prompted by a question from Senator Alvarado the previous year, Dr. August expressed his belief that the University is a mature one with very rich resources from which to draw.
  • He shared the following cat metaphor for faculty: cats disdain authority, prefer to work singly and only come together occasionally, and get very stressed out by change.  (Laughter from group.)
  • He had a visiting professorship at the University of Sydney, Australia where he was requested to take blood samples from Tasmanian Devils based on his experience with cats.  This example exemplified his belief that you never know where life will take you.
  • He saw the Dean of Faculties as the “keeper of the spirit” of making TAMU a great place to work for faculty and beyond.  The following twelve areas are vital to this goal: collaborative governance, compensation/benefits, senior leadership, diversity, facilities/security, job satisfaction, career opportunities, respect/appreciation, supervisor relationship, teaching environment, work-life balance, and tenure/advancement clarity.  All of these are central to the DOF role.
  • Dr. August shared some of the opportunities he received as the DOF: enormous respect for the expertise of his faculty colleagues, and getting to know colleagues at distance locations that he otherwise would not have met.
  • He thanked Dr. Blanca Lupiani – the new Dean of Faculties – for being the keeper of the spirit of the twelve tenets discussed previously.
  • He was proud of some new discussions on campus: a teaching conference, led by Heather Wilkinson, Associate Dean of Faculties, who he thanked for engaging faculty in the scholarship of teaching; and the Faculty Conversation Caf├ęs happening every month.
  • Some more difficult discussions were had as well, such as creating a civil workplace, and properly disciplining perpetrators of sexual harassment.
  • Dr. August expressed the detrimental effects of weak sanctions: negative modeling and leaders’ integrity; risk of litigation, OCR complaints, and Title IX vulnerability; and morale and retention, retaliation, and underreporting.
  • Title IX concerns arose last year at TAMU, resulting in development of a sanction matrix for students.  A similar document is under works for faculty and staff.
  • There are several questions that Dr. August considered when working with faculty members:
    • “Where is my colleague in terms of his/her career trajectory?”
    • “What are we talking about today?”
    • “Which hats do I wear right now?”
  • He also shared some simple pleasures derived from working on campus:
    • Interactions with students when walking across campus
In restaurants, asking servers (who attend Texas A&M) who their favorite professor is, and then letting that professor know. 
Dean August then fielded questions.
Dana Gaddy, College of Veterinary Medicine
Senator Gaddy expressed appreciation for Dr. August’s work as DOF and asked what he saw as the greatest challenge currently faced by the new DOF.  He responded that he was concerned that faculty would see the DOF office as a place of support and advocacy, rather than the “principal’s office.”
Adam Kolasinski, Mays Business School
Senator Kolasinski wondered what the DOF office would do to preserve due process and academic freedom in the face of sexual harassment complaints.  Dr. August shared that the System has made their office very aware of the definition of sexual harassment, and that they are critically careful to make sure they look at all the definitions to determine if the pattern of behavior meets that bar; most do not.  There is a checks and balances system in place. 
Bob Strawser, Mays Business School and College of Medicine
Senator Strawser thanked Dr. August for his service.
Joan Wolf, College of Liberal Arts
Senator Wolf thanked him for his service, and expressed concern based on conversations with colleagues, that the DOF office is no longer a place of advocacy dedicated to faculty.  She wondered how that perception of the office might be changed.  Dr. August shared that the responsibility for investigating serious complaints such as Title IX violations has been shifted to the President’s office and is no longer administered through the DOF office.  The DOF still has to make the decisions after the recommendations come down from the President’s office, because we want someone who understands faculty to interpret the report.  He suggested looking at the DOF office in two years to see if perceptions have changed.
Speaker Harlin thanked Dr. August with a gift from the Senate, who applauded as Dr. August left the podium.
Kristin Harper, who will be retiring at the end of May as Executive Director of the Office of Student Success, was presented with a certificate of appreciation for her years of work on the Core Curriculum Committee.
Speaker Harlin welcomed the Senators back from spring break, and shared some tips for developing some resilience to rejection in academia.  She then shared recent Faculty Senate highlights:
  • Speaker Harlin again recognized the guests from Prairie View, thanking them and encouraging continuing engagement between the Senates.
  • The Faculty Senate and University Committee election process has begun, with the deadline for nominations being extended by two days to 11:59pm on Wednesday, March 20.  Caucus leaders would be contacted the following morning with an update on nominee status.  Senators were encouraged to speak to colleagues about serving on the Senate and/or committees.
  • The election period will run from Monday, April 1 – Monday, April 15.  Emails will be sent with the link to the ballot.  Votes will be tallied by the election committee on Tuesday, April 16 with results announced on Wednesday, April 17.  Questions may be directed to Betsy at the Faculty Senate office.
  • Members of the Election Committee include:
    • Matt Taylor, College of Agriculture & Life Sciences
    • Lou Tassinary, College of Architecture
    • Danny Davis, Bush School of Government & Public Service
    • Janna Burnett, College of Dentistry
    • Darlene McLaughlin, College of Medicine
    • Rebecca Burns, College of Nursing
    • Zack Elmageed, College of Pharmacy
    • Tony Boucher, College of Education & Human Development
    • Lazlo Kish, College of Engineering
    • Lowell Boudreaux, Galveston
    • Alex Orsi, College of Geosciences
    • Saurabh Vishnubhakat, School of Law
    • Dale Rice, College of Liberal Arts
    • Bruce Neville, University Libraries
    • Greg Heim, Mays Business School
    • Albertus Retnanto, Qatar
    • Janice Epstein, College of Science
    • Tommy McDonald, School of Public Health
    • Tamy Frank-Cannon, College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Science
  • A group of 18 Senators traveled to Austin on March 4 to attend the Joint Meeting with the University of Texas.  They engaged with colleagues, administrators from both institutions, legislators, and members of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.  Special thanks were given to Blanca Lupiani, TAMU’s new Dean of Faculties & Associate Provost; Michael  O’Quinn, Vice President for Government Relations and Strategic Initiatives; and Chancellor John Sharp for attending the event. 
  • Speaker Harlin and Speaker-Elect Klein visited Senators in the College of Dentistry in Dallas and the School of Law in Ft. Worth in an effort to learn more about our colleagues and institutions.  She thanked those Senators for hosting the visits.
  • Members of the Planning Committee met with administrators to discuss Workday and the feedback gleaned from the survey to faculty on this issue.  Interim Vice President for Human Resources Elizabeth Schwartz will provide an update at the May Senate meeting.
  • Speaker Harlin joined Speaker-Elect Andrew Klein and former Speaker and Senator Jim Woosley at the Texas Council of Faculty Senates meeting the previous month (Jim serves as leader of that group).  Congratulations were offered to Jim on his work in organizing the first National Council of Faculty Senates.
  • Speaker Harlin attended a System meeting with speakers and presidents of TAMU’s System institutions, and raised the issue of the MyEvive health assessment requirement to receive the health premium discount.  This resulted in a joint resolution by the speakers/presidents of these Faculty Senates, which was sent to System Health Plan Administrators two weeks prior.  A resolution also appeared on the FS agenda later in the meeting.
  • The Task Force on Faculty Participation in Selection, Evaluation, and Retention of Deans and Department Heads completed a draft of the Appendix to accompany the Standard Administrative Procedure, which appeared on the FS agenda for discussion.  Faculty feedback will soon be sought.  The committee will then review the feedback and make additional changes to the appendix.  Thanks were offered to Senators Claire Katz, Clint Magill, Deb Banerjee, Adam Kolasinski, Jose Fernandez-Solis, Angie Hill Price, Jay Ramadoss, and Grace Townsend for working diligently to complete the draft.
  • In response to last month’s Committee of the Whole discussion, an ad hoc committee has been created to explore questions, concerns, and benefits of the CHI St. Joseph partnership with Texas A&M.  Thanks to the Personnel & Welfare Committee for initially considering this charge and to Chair Bruce Neville for responding to the Speaker with the decision it would be better addressed in a different manner.  Appreciation was given to former Speaker & Senator Angie Hill Price for chairing this ad hoc committee and to the members: Matt Hoffman, Alva Ferdinand, Shelley Holliday, and Patrick Burkhart.  They hope to conclude work in April. [Correction: Heather Ramsey also on the committee.]
  • An update on guest speakers for upcoming meetings was provided: in April, Scott Woodward, our Athletic Director and members of his team, as well as Andy Morriss, Dean of the School of Innovation.  In May, Robin Means-Coleman, Vice President and Associate Provost for Diversity with members of her team, and possibly our President at one of these meetings. 
The motion passed to approve the February 11, 2019 minutes as distributed. 

The motion passed to approve the Consent Agenda.  (Consent Agenda can be found below Adjournment.)
No unfinished business was conducted.
Core Curriculum Council Course Report – recertification only – no documentation – FS.36.495
The motion passed to approve the Core Curriculum Course Report.  (Core Curriculum Course Report can be found below Consent Agenda.)
Other Committee Reports
Task Force for SAP: Selection, Evaluation, and Retention of Deans and Department HeadsAppendix – Attachment R – For Informational Review & Discussion – FS.36.496
The Task Force on the Selection, Evaluation and Retention of Dean and Department Head Standard Administrative Procedure completed a draft of the Appendix found in Attachment R.  It was included on the agenda for informational review. Soon broad faculty input will be sought from faculty members, and then reviewed by the task force members.  Discussion was opened but no one engaged in discussion.
No old business was conducted.
Proposed Revisions to Student Rules
Rule 7 Attendance – Attachment S – For Informational Review & Discussion – FS.36.497
This appeared for discussion only; it is expected to come up for a vote at April 8, 2019 meeting.  Discussion was opened but no one engaged in discussion.
Resolution for Health Assessment Requirement for Consideration of Approval by the Faculty SenateAttachment T – passed – FS.36.498
The motion was made by Secretary Sicilio to approve the Resolution for Health Assessment Requirement; motion approving Attachment T was passed after discussion by Senators.
Speaker-Elect Klein asked for any business for the Committee of the Whole.
Angie Hill Price, College of Engineering, and Jay Ramadoss, College of Veterinary Medicine
Senators Hill Price and Ramadoss encouraged Senators to review carefully the changes to Student Rule 7 – Attendance prior to the next Senate meeting, and to encourage colleagues to do the same.
Rajesh Miranda, College of Medicine
Senator Miranda raised ongoing concerns about TAMU’s partnership with CHI St. Joseph and the personal attacks on his character.  He was joined in a robust discussion on the issue by the following Senators: Bob Strawser, Mays Business School; Adam Kolasinski, Mays Business School; Joan Wolf, College of Liberal Arts; Geoffrey Booth, College of Architecture; Mark Sicilio, College of Medicine; and John Hubbard, College of Medicine.
Walter Daugherity, College of Engineering
Parliamentarian Daugherity expressed concern over another issue with Workday regarding pre-tax deductions, which he raised with Transportation who will be pursuing the problem.
Speaker-Elect Klein turned the meeting back over to Speaker Harlin.
The meeting was adjourned at 4:49pm.
ATTACHMENTS BELOW: Approved Consent Agenda, CCC Course Report
New Courses – Attachment B – passed – FS.36.479
CSCE 710     Fundamentals of Software Analysis
OBIO 613             Interactive Writing and Grant Proposals
SCMT 611     Statistical Foundation of Data Analytics
Change in Courses – Attachment C – passed – FS.36.480
PHEB 622             Reproductive and Perinatal Epidemiology
Change in Programs Attachment D – passed – FS.36.481
   College of Agriculture & Life Sciences
        Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education & Communication
           CERT-INAG           International Agriculture Certificate
Change in Programs Attachment E – passed – FS.36.482
   School of Public Health
       Department of Health Promotion & Community Health Sciences
           MPH-HPCH           Master of Public Health in Health Promotion and Community Health Sciences
Change in Programs Attachment F – passed – FS.36.483
     School of Public Health
        Department of Health Policy & Management
           MPH-PHPM           Master of Public Health in Health Policy Management
Special Consideration Item Attachment G – passed – FS.36.484
  College of Liberal Arts
     Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences
           CERT-IOPY             Industrial-Organizational Psychology - Certificate

Special Consideration Item Attachment H – passed – FS.36.485
  College of Agriculture & Life Sciences
     Department of Nutrition & Food Science
           MCN-CNTR             Master of Clinical Nutrition
Special Consideration Item Attachment I – passed – FS.36.486
     Bush School of Government & Public Service and School of Public Health
         Departments of International Affairs and Health Promotion & Community Health Sciences
            MIA/MPH-INTA/HPCH-INTA/HPCH      Master of International Affairs and Master of Public Health Combined  Degree Program
Special Consideration Item Attachment J – passed – FS.36.487
     Bush School of Government & Public Service and School of Public Health
         Departments of International Affairs and Health Policy & Management
            MIA/MPH-INTA/PHPM-INTA/PHPM      Master of International Affairs and Master of Public Health Combined Degree Program
Special Consideration Item Attachment K – passed – FS.36.488
     Bush School of Government & Public Service and School of Public Health
         Departments of Public Service & Administration and Health Policy & Management
            MPS/PHD-PSAA/HRSA-PSAA/HRSA    Master of Public Service and Administration/PhD in Health Services Research Collaborative Degree Program
New Courses – Attachment L – passed – FS.36.489
IBUS 440       International Technology Management
MKTG 427     Retailing Strategy and Metrics
PHLT 370      Broad Street Learning Community II
Change in Courses – Attachment M – passed – FS.36.490
HLTH 210      Introduction to the Discipline
OCNG 350    Marine Pollution
Change in Programs Attachment N – passed – FS.36.491
   School of Public Health
Department of Public Health
           BS-PHLT   Public Health - BS
Courses Submitted for C Certification – Attachment O – passed – FS.36.492    
BIMS 481-C          Seminar in Biomedical Science
ITDE 201-C          Foundations of Interdisciplinary Engineering
 Courses Submitted for W Certification – Attachment P – passed – FS.36.493
ANTH 434-W        Human Evolutionary Ecology-Reproduction and Parenting
COMM 410-W      Radio, Records, and Popular Music
COMM 415-W      New Media and Civil Society
COMM 420-W      Gender and Communication
COMM 428-W      Women's Rhetoric
COMM 434-W      Topics in Rhetorical Theory
COMM 447-W      Communication, Group Processes and Collaboration
COMM 452-W      Cultural Studies of Communication Technology
ENGR 401-W       Interdisciplinary Design
OCNG 481-W       Seminar
POLS 439-W        Foreign Policy Decision Making
POLS 481-W        Research Seminar
RUSS 322-W        Masterpieces of Russian Literature
VIST 375-W          Foundations of Visualization
WFSC 481-W       Seminar
WFSC 491-W       Research
Courses Submitted for W Certification-TAMU Galveston – Attachment Q – passed – FS.36.494
MARB 445-W       Marine Fisheries Management
______________________________End of Consent Agenda____________________________________
CORE CURRICULUM COUNCIL COURSE REPORT (Recertification only – no documentation) – FS.36.495
Courses Submitted for Recertification in Foundational Component Area: Creative Arts
ENGL 212     Shakespeare
Courses Submitted for Recertification in Foundational Component Area: Lang, Phil, Culture
ENGL 338     American Ethnic Literature 
Courses Submitted for Recertification in Foundational Component Area: Life & Physical Sciences
HORT 202    Horticultural Science and Practices Laboratory