University Senate - August 27, 2018 Meeting Minutes

Call to Order and Announcements

The University Senate was called to order at 3:50 p.m., in Room 111, Harrison Hall, Oxford Campus, on Monday, August 27, 2018. Members absent:  Sheldon Anderson, Burcin Bayram, Shelly Jarrett Bromberg, Austin Hall, Vahagn Manukian, Michel Pactat, Chris Pirigyi, Vaishali Raval, Andrew Revelle, Breanna Robinson, Sumit Sircar, and Steven Tuck.

  1. Announcements and Remarks by the Chair of University Senate, Phyllis Callahan
    1. The President’s reception for Senators will be held on October 22, 2018, immediately following the Senate meeting.

    2. The fall Faculty Assembly meeting will be held on September 18, 2018, in 152 Shideler Hall, from 4:15-5:15 p.m.

    3. Pre-proposals for Boldly Creative are due by October 1, 2018. For more information on this initiative, please visit the Boldly Creative website.

    4. There will not be a Senate meeting on September 10, 2018.

    5. Provost Callahan introduced the members of Senate Executive Committee: Terri Barr (Chair), Dana Cox (Chair-Elect), Don Ucci (At-large) Meaghan Murtagh (ASG), Benedict Njoku (GSA), Jeff Wanko (Secretary), and Becky Sander (Recording Secretary).

Approval of University Senate Minutes

  1. A motion was received, seconded, and carried to approve the May 7, 2018, minutes of University Senate.

Consent Calendar

  1. The following items were received on the Consent Calendar without debate: 
    • Benefits Committee Minutes - March 27, 2018

    • Council on Diversity and Inclusion Minutes – March 6, 2018

    • Graduate Council Minutes – April 10, 2018

    • Honors Program Advisory Committee – May 16, 2018

    • Academic Policy Committee – Annual Report

    • Athletic Policy Committee – Annual Report

    • Awards and Recognition Committee – Annual Report

    • Campus Planning Committee – Annual Report

    • Committee on Faculty Research – Annual Report

    • Council on Diversity and Inclusion – Annual Report

    • Governance Committee – Annual Report

    • Honors Program Advisory Committee – Annual Report

    • MUDEC Committee – Annual Report

    • Student Affairs Council – Annual Report

A motion was received, seconded, and carried to approve the Consent Calendar.

New Business

  1. SR 19-01 - Change in the composition of the Council on Diversity and Inclusion - Ron Scott and Jane Goettsch, Co-Chairs

    • The proposed changes to the composition of the Council on Diversity and Inclusion involve adding six staff positions and eliminating one administrative position. The changes will broaden representation, and although it increases the Council to 29 members, Dr. Scott explained that much of the work is done in sub-committees, which report to a core group of members.

SR 19-01
August 27, 2018
BE IT HEREBY RESOLVED that University Senate endorse proposed revisions to the ByLaws of University Senate, 6.C.4.a, regarding Committee composition and membership of the Council on Diversity and Inclusion Committee.
  1. Senate Overview and Procedures - Terri Barr, Chair, Senate Executive Committee 
    • Professor Barr reviewed the Senate documents: the Enabling Act; the Standing Rules; and, the Bylaws.  Senators should understand the basis for each of these and be able to reference them as necessary. 
    • Senators were reminded that the Senate’s primary responsibility is for curriculum, programs, and course offerings. The quorum for conducting business is forty-six.
    • Professor Barr addressed questions from the floor.
      • How is seating determined? Seating is governed by the Standing Rules. In fall semester. The Senate seating arrangement shall be alphabetical order (A-Z) starting from the front row to the back row of the room. During spring semester. The Senate seating arrangement shall be reverse alphabetical order (Z-A) starting from the front row to the back row of the room.
      • What is the consent calendar? Routine business items such as meeting minutes, committee reports, and curriculum are on the consent calendar.  Senators can pull something off of the calendar if needed.
      • How does a senator put something on the meeting agenda? Executive committee sets the Senate agenda. Issues can be brought to Executive Committee, which meets every other Monday on weeks opposite of Senate. Not every issue brought to Executive Committee will come to Senate. Some topics can be handled in Senate committees.
      • Is there a process to take something off the consent calendar? Yes, this is done during the meeting before the consent calendar is voted on.
      • What does it mean when the senate passes a resolution? A resolution is an action of Senate. Some of the changes are changes in the Senate Bylaws while others are changes in MUPIM.
      • What is a Sense of the Senate? It is a vote of support or recommendation for something. It is not actionable.
      • How many people have policies for laptops in classrooms? Many of the senators present had laptop policies for their classrooms.
      • Why can’t we get the agendas sooner? Every effort is made to distribute the agenda and materials by the Wednesday afternoon or Thursday morning prior to Monday’s meeting.  There is a dependency on COAD, particularly for curricular items. The concern is that senators don’t have enough time to share the agenda with their constituents and receive feedback prior to the meeting. It was suggested that multiple e-mails be sent so that the agenda can be sent out prior to when the other materials may be approved and ready.   Senate Overview and Procedures - Terri Barr, Chair, Senate Executive Committee
      • How are decisions made to cancel Senate meetings?  The decision to cancel Senate meetings is based on the amount of business.  Senators expressed concern about not having sufficient time to discuss necessary issues. It should be noted that only three meetings were cancelled last year – September 11, 2017, November 20, 2017, and January 29, 2018.

Senators also discussed the importance of improving self governance by including more pro-active deliberation in Senate rather than passively receiving and responding to reports. To aid with this culture shift, the chair of Senate executive committee proposed to survey Senators concerning what issues constituents would like Senators to discuss instead of asking what committees Senators would like to hear from.


  1. A motion was received, seconded, and carried to adjourn the Regular Session of University Senate.

Next scheduled meeting of University Senate:

September 24, 2018, 3:50 p.m.

Room 111 Harrison Hall, Oxford Campus