Deans Council Meeting
August 11, 2010
Note: At times, issues of
confidentiality may require that some items discussed in these meetings be
excluded from these minutes.
Members: Bill Barnes, Dave Caudill, Tom
Currin, Alan Gabrielli, Steve Hamrick, Ruston Hunt, Joyce Mills, Jeff Orr,
Nikki Palamiotis, Jeffrey Ray, Han Reichgelt, Zvi Szafran
Members Absent: Russ Hunt, Joyce Mills
Carson, Diane Payne, Dawn Ramsey
Item 1. Updates
Szafran updated the Council on the following:
- Budget – The USG has asked
for 4, 6, and 8% budget cut scenarios; SPSU has contingency plans for all
three. Revenues appear to be up in
the State as well as enrollment.
- HOPE award discussions at
the statehouse may negatively impact students but no final decisions have
been made to date
- New Programs – The System
Office approved our letter of intent for the M.S. in Architecture and approved
the Certificate in Architectural Studies.
An identical minor will be coming to the faculty for approval soon.
- Regents Test Requirements –
The committee approved our proposal for SPSU to be exempt from the Regents
requirements; must be approved by the Chancellor still.
- Campus Construction – done
or nearing completion in most areas
- Internal Operating Budget
– Szafran is setting up budgets for the Division
of Engineering, Graduate Studies, International Programs, and student
assistants for the new learning commons in the Library.
- Physics Space – Alan
complimented facilities on the timely completion of major projects – labs
and offices are almost ready in Building H. He will be meeting with the architect
soon to remodel the vacated Physics space. Dawn asked about the splitting of
Biology, Chemistry & Physics.
Alan explained his vision for the department and that officially it
remains one department.
- Building J – the gaming
lab is moving to another space and the old ATTIC space is being remodeled into
one classroom and 6 faculty offices.
- VPBF – the search for a
new Vice President for Business and Finance will start immediately.
- Nobel Peace Prize Winner –
On August 26 from 12:00-2:00. Dr. Yunus, Nobel
Peace Prize winner in 2006 will speak to our campus.
Scholar-In-Residence – Eszter Simon, our
Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence has arrived on campus for the year. Tom Rotnem was
away on a 1-year Fulbright last year and Omar Zia will be on a Fulbright
this coming year.
- Engineering Camps – the
Division of Engineering’s engineering camps went very well. The camps were geared toward middle and
high school students and generated a lot of interest in an aeronautical
- Graduate Studies –
applications are up 10%; acceptances are up 15%.
- STEM Education Coordinator
– George Stickel has been hired as the STEM
- New PR Associate – Sylvia
Carson introduced Diane Payne, the new Associate Director of Public
Item 2. Advising Workshop Plans
distributed handouts on the faculty advisor training pilot. Twenty-two faculty
attended and she reported that it went very well. The full roll-out is planned for Fall 2010 and will consist of 10 sections for up to 20
faculty in each section. Becky Rutherfoord and four teaching fellows will be conducting
the workshops. The workshops are
intended for full-time faculty only.
There will be a pilot for part-time faculty in the fall and it was proposed
that part-time faculty who attend should be paid a stipend in the amount of
$150. Dawn also talked about expanding
new faculty orientation. After
discussion it was decided to move some of the content to a mandatory session
later in the semester, possibly a Friday at noon and get sponsorships for an
accompanying lunch, and stay with the two day schedule we are currently
thanked Dawn and her committee for all their hard work.
Item 3. Orientation
Currin talked about orientation in the past versus present day and suggested
that a lot of the information requested during orientation could be printed in
a bulletin and asked Steve if this could be done and how expensive it would
be. Steve responded that it could be
done. Han talked about how his school
handles orientation and that it is working well because of their computer lab
and lab manager. Comments from the
- Transfer credit
evaluations continue to be a problem as they are generally not completed
until the student commits to attend orientation so Admissions gets backed
up. It was suggested that some
schools charge a transfer credit fee and that it is done at the same time
as the admission process and has had positive results.
- Graduate orientation is a
problem with students not being able to self-register for transition
courses. It was suggested that
Steve set up test score and pre-requisite table as a solution. Nikki and Han will discuss this.
- Currin suggested having
students who just went through orientation talk to orientation leaders and
then bring the orientation leaders to Deans Council to discuss
issues. It was also suggested to
bring Bob Brown, Ron Lunk, and Ron Koger to a future meeting.
- Charge a fee for transfer
credit evaluation? All agreed it is
a good idea. Szafran
will check to see if this can be done.
One of the biggest roadblocks in this area is the volume of
transfer credit evaluations to be done in the amount of time available
with the number of staff available.
Item 4. PeopleAdmin
Process for Graduate Assistants
Palamiotis discussed the PeopleAdmin process we will
be using soon for hiring graduate assistants.
As this process could be in place as soon as September 1, 2010, there is
an urgent need to set up a workflow that will work for all schools. Han described the process used in CSE to
choose and hire graduate assistants. Szafran talked about moving all graduate assistant budgets
to Graduate Studies as a way to better cost our expenses and plans for growth
in Graduate Studies, size of graduate students versus undergraduate students,
and need to have goals and plan in place.
Item 5. New Degree Proposals
Currin distributed a handout on suggestions for new program options in
engineering. After reviewing options in
Systems Engineering at other universities, he came up with four possible concentrations
and will send this information out to the faculty for review after kick off
discussed ideas for new programs as well and suggested Environmental,
Forensics, and Biotechnology as good fits with our mission. Gabrielli stated that there is no mechanism
in place for development of multi-disciplinary degrees. Zvi asked if these
suggestions should be pursued this year.
Comments from the Council:
- Stick with approved
degrees and add options/concentrations/certificates in the suggested areas
as this avoids BoR approvals
- Szafran responded that there are
structural problems with doing this as there is no space in existing
- Leave off “technology”
when marketing to remove constraints
- Szafran sees the deans sharing
concepts with chairs and getting all involved in creating new programs
- How would ET department regard
offering some new non-ABET accredited programs?