DECEMBER 14, 2001
I. Call to Order
President Jim Tolhuizen called the meeting to order at 1:04 p.m..
II. Minutes of the November 16, 2001 meeting
A motion to approve the minutes of the November 16, 2001 Faculty Organization meeting was made, seconded, and approved unanimously.
III. Executive Vice Chancellor's Business
Executive Vice Chancellor Virginia Helm reported on the following:
. Dr. Charlotte Reed has been named as director for IUN's Center on Teaching and Learning. Initially, she will work with teams to identify programming of the most interest to our faculty, followed by program implementation.
. Dr. Helm commended Tim Sutherland and Don Coffin, co-chairs of the search and screen committee for the Teaching and Learning Center, for their hard work. She also thanked the rest of the Committee's members: Arlene Adler, George Assibey-Mensah, Paul Blohm, Virgil Hoftiezer, Terry Lukas, Denise Travis, and Bob Votaw.
. EVC Helm wished everyone a happy holiday season and asked if anyone had questions. A question arose about the status of the Director of Admissions position. Dr. Helm answered that we are close to hiring someone.
IV. President's Business
President Tolhuizen reported on the following:
. The Faculty Board of Review has been elected. The results, including vote totals, will be on reserve in the Library next week.
. The Grants and Research Development Committee has completed its work and the letters have gone out.
President Tolhuizen thanked both committees for their work.
V. Committee Reports
President Tolhuizen recognized Professor Mark Sheldon, chair of the Faculty Affairs Committee, about the new Policy on New Classification of Non-research Academic Employees. Dr. Sheldon began his remarks by thanking Dr. George Bodmer for his valuable help in drafting this document.
The policy draft is based on the one used at IU Kokomo. Dr. Sheldon noted that a lecturer could be promoted to Senior Lecturer based on either teaching or service. The teaching, however, must meet standards of adequacy.
The policy was approved unanimously by the Faculty Organization.
VI. Old Business
There was no old business.
VII. New Business
Professor Shanks-Meile moved the approval of the Proposed Response of IUN to the Economic Crisis in Northwest Indiana. This document had been posted on the IUN web site. Her motion was seconded, and President Tolhuizen opened the floor for discussion. Members of the Faculty Organization offered the following comments and/or questions:
. Professor Weiler put forth a couple of minor changes to the text, such as replacing the word "bombing" (of the World Trade Center) to "attack." Also, in the fourth line, the word "affects" should be "effects."
. Shall we identify just one group to assist with this action? Professor Shanks-Meile replied that the proposal seeks broad coverage. It is important to get the process started.
. Professor Coffin felt that the proposal needs a time period, a beginning date and an end date. Professor Tolhuizen agreed, saying we should have indicators for the termination of the proposal. Professor Needleman responded that there is no way to predict those circumstances. Dr. Coffin suggested that a small committee be created to determine the end of the emergency.
. Dr. Needleman announced that our course on Workforce Transitions will be offered at no cost, per the Labor Studies director. Also, Labor Studies will increase its scholarships.
. Professor Rominger asked how people will prove that they are unemployed? Is it just one group of workers being targeted here? Also, this proposal could strain Student Services. Dr. Shanks-Meile responded that some sort of procedure should be developed. Professor Needleman suggested that we might use an "IOU Plan," where students would take classes but not receive credit until they paid their tuition, perhaps through Financial Aid.
. Professor Certa asked if this policy needs to be approved by the IU Trustees. Vice Chancellor Vasquez replied in the affirmative.
. Professor Mucci wondered if IUN will be able to use these students in our headcount totals. The response was not until they pay their tuition. Additionally, workers' free enrollment will not affect their unemployment benefits.
. Professor Vinodgopal asked if this document will need to go to the state legislature and/or the ICHE. Chancellor Bergland answered that he didn't think it would need to go before those bodies. Professor Vinodgopal urged that this battle should go to the legislature.
. Professor Sheldon noted that this action would be great for our image in the region.
. Professor Bodmer asked if there is time to perform this action to have any meaningful effect. Chancellor Bergland suggested that we should approve a document we believe in and then implement it.
. Regarding empty seats in classes, Registrar Kesheimer reminded the faculty that we have long-term students seeking some of those seats during regular registration and add/drop. Those students should have priority.
. Professor Certa wondered if we have a set block of courses for these workers. Also, is there any interest in this proposal among the unemployed ?
. Professor Sutherland suggested that our new Office of Sponsored Programs could look for external funding for this proposal.
. Library Director Moran felt that this policy has some complications, but he agreed that we should pass it and then develop it. Professor Gallmeier seconded that notion and also said some courses are in place, such as those for the General Studies degree.
. Professor Needleman agreed that this proposal has some problems, but we need to do something. Swingshift College has things in place to assist these workers in developing skills they need for university work.
. Professor Shanks-Meile stated that this proposal also serves as an "olive branch" to the administration.
. EVC Helm announced that she has emailed some people on campus to meet next week to start to work on our response to the economic crisis. She asked for faculty volunteers to join that meeting and generate ideas. We need to do something immediately.
. Dr. Needleman commented that we need to let the region know that IUN is here for its residents and that we are concerned about the appalling things occurring in our area.
With no further discussion, President Tolhuizen called for a vote on the motion. The motion passed unanimously. We will get something to Chancellor Bergland right away.
VIII. Chancellor's Business
Chancellor Bergland began his remarks by commenting on the above discussion about how IUN can assist in this regional economic crisis. He felt that we need to work together on such things. If this proposal had come to his attention before today, perhaps he and the vice chancellors could have done some things to help move it forward. It is very important that faculty and administration work as colleagues to find solutions to such problems. A climate of "we-they" is not the ideal way to address issues. When one has an idea, call him or EVC Helm or VC Vasquez, so that we can work together.
At this point, Dr. Needleman and Chancellor Bergland debated the chancellor's accessibility, particularly regarding Swingshift College.
Professor Shanks-Meile stated that she and Dr. Needleman brought this proposal to the faculty in good faith, so that the faculty could discuss it before it went to the administration. Professor Sheldon commented that we have a strong tradition of faculty governance at IUN, so the proposal came before the Faculty Organization before moving on to the administration. Chancellor Bergland accepted that comment, but he thought the proposal could be more effective if faculty and administration had worked together on such a document.
Professor Gallmeier expressed the belief that some of the faculty do not think the chancellor is accessible. Chancellor Bergland replied that if such a perception exists, then please come and talk to him about it. Dr. Gallmeier promised he would do so.
Dr. Bergland then moved onto several specific comments about the proposal. He believes that the workers should be the focus, not IUN. Thus, he would like to see other institutions participate in this project, for he maintains that cooperation and collaboration are the correct directions for such an initiative. Some faculty members disagreed, stating that IUN should get the credit for such a response to community needs. The chancellor offered to work with the faculty on these differing viewpoints. He noted that there will be a cost for this proposal.
Finally, Chancellor Bergland updated the faculty on the following topics:
. The idea of charging Illinois residents in-state tuition has gone to President Brand for consideration. The president has responded by calling for a business plan to be drafted and then sent to his office.
. Our Post-Tenure Review Policy has been approved by the Trustees.
. Regarding the budget, there is not a freeze on administrative vacancies. President Brand has asked all campuses for their own plans to deal with cost containment. Above all, we will protect our academic mission.
There being no further business, the Faculty Organization meeting adjourned at 2:27 p.m..
Stephen G. McShane