March 20, 2023

TAMU Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes

March 20, 2023
Via Zoom
The full video recording of the meeting can be accessed on the Faculty Senate website:
Speaker Rice called the tenth meeting of the 40th session to order at 3:00pm.   Due to ongoing social distancing practices resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the meeting was conducted via Zoom.
Senator Andrew Klein will be monitoring the raised hand function and will monitor the chat.  Registration function is being used to track attendance.

Dr. Kristie Orr, Director of Disability Resources – Link to presentation can also be found on the Faculty Senate website – Important Faculty Updates. FS.40.335
Senator Trevor Hale – Mays Business School, spoke about a proposal to open testing center at Mays Business School which would free up more space at the Disability Testing Center for students to take exams.  He also asked the percentage of students that require extra time in class.  Dr. Orr answered 85%.  State that doesn’t modify the deadline and will open the project, assignment up sooner for the student to have extra time.
Senator Catharina LaPorte – College of Arts & Sciences - Anthropology, stated that she has over 100 students and received 11 notifications from Disability Resources for students requiring extra time, the ability to move around the class, etc.  Due to her teaching methods with no exams, and active learning, she has not had to accommodate any of those students. 
Senator Kathryn Falvo -Galveston, asked does the graph of tests given include Galveston.  Dr. Orr answered no, it only includes main campus.  She also asked if the increase in number of accommodations was due to the pandemic.  Dr. Orr answered that it’s due to a lot of different factors, increased enrollment, less stigmatism over ADHD etc.
Secretary-Elect. Tracy Hammond –College of Engineering, said that she is trying to make her classes more accessible.  Asked about accommodations for visually impaired students, Dr. Orr stated that they follow the university guidelines, if the class is face-to-face then that is the requirements.  They must look at more serious cases when it comes to being able to take classes remotely.  Also stated that she is a chair over a conference that will be hosted, and she wants to know how to make it more accessible.  Asked if Dr. Orr could look over their plan to make sure it’s accessible.  Dr. Orr placed a link in the chat to assist Dr. Hammond with hosting professional meetings & conferences.
Senator Larry Fickel- School of Architecture, said that he has a lot of students that say they have ADA accommodations. When theses students graduate and begin work, they aren’t going to be given extra time to complete a task.  He wonders if allowing students extra time in class is a good thing.  Dr. Orr stated that the work environment is different than the environment here in a classroom, so they take them on a case-by-case basis. According to the law, they are not allowed to say you’re not going to get this accommodation in a job so we’re not going to provide it here. 
Senator Asha Rao- College of Arts & Sciences-Biology, stated that professional students need to make immediate decisions and don’t have more time.  In her class, she offers her students 1 week to finish an assignment and she still has students asking for more time.  She feels it is more of a time management issue. 
Senator Adam Kolasinski – Mays Business School, said that in his field, you have to know things off the top of your head.  The type of knowledge can only be judged by exams.
Senator Andrew Klein – College of Arts & Sciences-Geography, stated that Dr. Off said that she typically proctors 400 exams in addition to her other duties.  He wanted to point out that this is more than a normal workload and she should be recognized for her work.  Also, he wanted to point out the staff shortage issue.
Senator Tammie Preston-Cunningham – College of Agriculture & Life Sciences, asked what is the process for determining when extra time is needed.  She stated that she posted an assignment up at the very beginning of the semester allowing the students 6-weeks to complete and they are still asking for extra time.  Dr. Orr said it is a rare occasion to have extra time on class assignments. But they look at each class and assignment individually and see what the student’s specific needs are.  Dr. Orr also stated that if the instructor is to receive a request for extra time on an assignment and has questions, they can reach out to or reach out to the access coordinator which can be found on the and look up your college and look for the rep that serves your college.
Senator Angie Hill-Price -College of Engineering, said that she thinks it might be helpful to clarify the statement on accommodations.  To include class projects, assignments, etc.
Senator Mark Sicilio – School of Medicine, said that he is very proud of all Dr. Orr’s efforts and hopes that the Faculty Senate will continue to advocate for the needs of the students and staff to get adequate accommodations.
Senator Debra Ellis – School of Architecture stated in the chat over the years she has been very impressed with dealing with Disability Resources. 
Speaker Rice – Stated that the Faculty Senate is definitely an advocate to Disability Resources and said it is important to keep the lines of communications open.

Dr. Julie Harlin, Associate Dean, Graduate and Professional School and Dr. Radhika Viruru, Clinical Professor, Teaching, Learning & Culture (CIRTL)
More information can be found at or questions can be directed to  Presentation FS.40.336
No Questions or Comments were made by Faculty Senate Members or guests.

First some good news, as I noted in an email last week.  All of the Constitutional Amendments were approved by the general faculty.  So, now our Constitution is in alignment with the reorganization of the university.
Student mental health issues have been addressed significantly this year by the student government.  We in the Senate have also been working on ways to support faculty who are concerned about students in their classes.  Our first seminar on this issue, jointly sponsored by the Senate and Counseling and Psychological Services, will be next week on March 29 in person and March 30 on Zoom.  A registration link has been sent to all faculty and we have about 20 seats left for the in-person workshop.
The following week, on April 4, we will be joining the University of Texas Faculty Council for our annual joint meeting.  I hope you are able to attend at least some of the sessions if not all of them, since the joint meeting will again be conducted online.  These annual meetings provide an opportunity to exchange ideas and to discuss the commonalities between the state’s two flagship universities.  Those commonalities are particularly important in the current climate, which finds higher education under attack from many directions.
Finally, I want to assure everyone that the Senate leadership is closely monitoring the current legislative session.  While many troubling proposals have been put forward, it’s a long way from proposal to final passage.  I’m hopeful that Chancellor Sharp, President Banks, and others in our system and university will be able to convey the value of what we do and the importance of higher education to the future of Texas in ways that will help safeguard tenure and academic freedom.
Minutes- Faculty Senate Meeting January 23, 2023 – Attachment B1 – Approved as submitted. FS.40.337
Minutes – Faculty Senate Meeting February 13, 2023 -Attachment B2- Approved as submitted. FS.40.338
The motion passed to approve the March 20, 2023; Consent Agenda – Approved
Core Curriculum Council Course Report – Attachment
C - Approved

Bylaw Committee Revisions – These will be voted on during the April 10th meeting.
D1 – Libraries Council - FS.40.358
D2 – Rules & Regulations – FS.40.359
D3 – Undergraduate Admissions Advisory Committee – FS.40.360
D4 – Scholarship Committee – FS.40.361
D5 – Reapportionment Report - School of Engineering Medicine not originally included in this report. A seat was added to the Senate to accommodate the addition of this school. Bringing the senate up to 121 seats. – FS.40.362 Passed
D6 - Proposed Revisions to Student Rule 10.5.2. – FS.40.363 Approved
Secretary Epstein moved the proposed revisions, and a poll was taken. 

Speaker-Elect Tracy Hammond – Asked if there are any positive actions or items of concern that are occurring on campus related to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility?
Speaker-Elect Hammond – College of Engineering, wanted to reference what Chancellor Sharp had stated that only merit should be considered in hiring, she is 100% agreement with this.  She made a statement, that this should be true across the university.  All of you that serve on hiring committees, I hope that you always make sure this is the case as well.
She wanted to clarify what she considers DEI to cut down on miscommunication in future conversations.
First, she goes on to explain what she feels DEI is not:
  1. DEI is not hiring anyone for any reason other than merit.
  2. DEI is not giving someone something easier due to social, cultural identity or demographics.
  3. DEI is not having a different standard for those who identify as a member any cultural group.
  4. DEI is not expressing surprise when someone performs above expectations for the social or cultural identity group.
  5. DEI is not asking someone who identifies as a member of a specific social or cultural group to speak for all members of their group.
What is DEI?
  1. DEI is being mindful that history, life experiences, neuro diversity and socialization both personally and professionally across and within disciplines, etc., have unintended consequences.
  2. DEI is Measuring differences that may unintentionally occurred due to unconscious bias.
  3. DEI is performing research across our disciplines to identify what is causing these differences to occur.
  4. DEI is using evidence-based research models to determine what could help rectify differences to reduce economic, health, social, race and gender disparities in academia, society, and the world.
  5. DEI is creating courageous spaces for our students, staff and faculty can share their own experiences relative to DEI, for prospective taking and relative action.
  6. DEI is often invisible, every single one of us has different life experiences. That include neuro diversity and all other differences.DEI includes everyone.
Senator Jayne Reuben – School of Dentistry, received an email asking her school to document if they taught Critical Race Theory in classes.  Wanted to know if anyone else had received this email.  This is in regard to the law that is about to be passed.  Senator Mary Campbell asked if she was referring to the law in legislation that was about to be passed.
Senator Pauline Wade -College of Engineering told Speaker-Elect. Hammond that she thought she did a great job in her explanation of DEI.
Senator Pauline Wade – College of Engineering mentioned that she is on a task force for dining services and asked any faculty if they had any information that would be helpful to email her at
Senator Rajesh Miranda – School of Medicine, stated that they have limited dining services and asked that she consider their campus. 
Senator Jorge Alvarado- College of Engineering, said that they are getting less service and the price has gone up from $6.00 to $14.00 at Sbisas Dining Hall.
Senator Trevor Hale – Mays Business School, asked Senator Klein if he was able to attend the Texas Faculty Senate Council, he was not able to attend.  Senator Hale mentioned all of the great things that they did and accomplished during the meeting.
Speaker Rice reminded everyone about the Faculty Senate coffee hour on Friday, March 24th at 8:00am. 
Speaker Rice motioned to Adjourn the meeting at 4:40pm

Graduate Council
New Courses – FS. 40.339 Approved
ANES 810: Pediatric Anesthesiology
MEID 713: Transition to Clerkship
MEID 824: Lifestyle Medicine and Behavior
MPSY 803: Advanced Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
MPSY 815: Neuropsychiatry
NEXT 800: Neurology Clerkship
OBGY 822: Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology
SURG 889: Surgical Innovation
VTMI 638: Biomedical Virology
Change in Courses – FS.40.340 Approved
IMED 843: Cardiology Outpatient
IMED 857: Hematology and Medical Oncology – Outpatient
IMED 869: Hematology
IMED 989: Special Topics in...
MFCM 989: Special Topics in...
MHUM 989: Special Topics in...
MPED 989: Special Topics in...
MPSY 806: Outpatient Psychiatry
MPSY 989: Special Topics in...
OBGY 989: Special Topics In...
SURG 814: Cardiothoracic Surgery
SURG 989: Special Topics in...
Change in Programs
Texas A&M – Galveston – FS.40.341 Approved
Department: Maritime Business Administration
BS/MMB-MBAU/MBAA-GAD: Maritime Business Administration - 5-year Bachelor of Science and Master of Maritime Business Administration and Logistics

Texas A&M – Galveston – FS.40.342 Approved
Department: Marine & Coastal Environmental Science
BS/MMR-CESS/MARM-GMR: Coastal Environmental Science and Society - 5-year Bachelor of Science and Master of Marine Resources Management
School of Public Health – FS.40.343 Approved
BS/MPH-PHLT/HPCH-PPC: Public Health - 5-year Bachelor of Science and Master of Public Health in Health Promotion & Community Health Sciences

School of Public Health – FS.40.344 Approved
BS/MPH-PHLT/OCSH-PPS: Public Health - 5-year Bachelor of Science and Master of Public Health in Occupational Safety & Health
School of Public Health -FS.40.345 Approved
BS/MPH-PHLT/PHEP-PPH: Public Health - 5-year Bachelor of Science/Master of Public Health in Epidemiology
School of Public Health – FS.40.346 Approved
BS/MPH-PHLT/PHPM-PPM: Public Health - 5-year Bachelor of Science and Master of Public Health in Health Policy & Management

Special Consideration Item – New Program Proposal
Mays Business School – FS.40.347 Approved
Department: Information & Operations Management
MS-SCAN: Master of Science in Supply Chain and Analytics

Miscellaneous Request – FS.40.348 Approved
CLMN - Change to Grading for Professional Medicine
Undergraduate Curriculum Committee
New Courses – FS.40.349 Approved
ECCB 385: Communication in Ecology and Conservation Biology
HIST 241: Sport in National and International History
Change in Courses – FS.40.350 Approved
AGEC 495: International Agribusiness and Industry Practices
GEOG 410: Global Change
GEOL 110: Disasters and Society
PHLT 315: Public Health Data Management and Assessment II
PHLT 445: Applications of Public Health
VTPP 207: Methodologies of Physiology Education Research
Change in Programs
College of Agriculture & Life Sciences – FS.40.351 Approved
Department of Biological & Agricultural Engineering
BS-AGSM: Agricultural Systems Management - BS

School of Public Health – FS.40.352 Approved
BS-PHLT: Public Health - BS
School of Performance, Visualization & Fine Arts – FS.40.353 Approved
MINOR-FLMS: Film and Media Studies - Minor
Change in Programs – Program Inactivation Proposal
College of Arts & Sciences – FS.40.354 Approved
CERT-BRES: Biomedical Research - Certificate
Special Consideration Item - New Program Proposal 
College of Agriculture & Life Sciences – FS.40.355 Approved
Department of Biological & Agricultural Engineering
MINOR-FDEN: Minor in Food Engineering - Minor
W & C Courses
Course Submitted for W- Certification – FS.40.356 Approved
COMM 423-W: Communicating Latinidad
Committee Reports
Core Curriculum Report – Attachment C – FS.40.357 Approved
Change in Curriculum Proposal – Foundational Component Area: Language, Philosophy, and Culture
PHIL 282-GE: Ethics in a Digital Age
Change in Curriculum Proposal – Foundational Component Area: Social & Behavioral Science
SPMT 304-GE: Sport Psychology Management and Practice
End of Consent Agenda_____________________________