University Senate - August 29, 2022 Minutes

Meeting Minutes
August 29, 2022

The University Senate was called to order at 3:31 p.m., in 111 Harrison Hall on Monday, August 29, 2022. Members absent: Amanda Euen, Jennifer Fox, Martin Johnson, Shashi Lalvani, William Moser and Cheryl Young.

Call to Order and Announcements

  1. Provost Liz Mullenix, Chair of University Senate, made announcements.
  • Extended a welcome to Senators and expressed her excitement about taking on a role in Senate. 
  • Read the Land Acknowledgment:

Miami University is located within the traditional homelands of the Myaamia and Shawnee people, who along with other indigenous groups ceded these lands to the United States in the first Treaty of Greenville in 1795. The Miami people, whose name our university carries, were forcibly removed from these homelands in 1846.

In 1972, a relationship between Miami University and the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma began and evolved into a reciprocal partnership, including the creation of the Myaamia Center at Miami University in 2001. The work of the Myaamia Center serves the Miami Tribe community and is dedicated to the revitalization of Miami language and culture and to restoring that knowledge to the Myaamia people.

Miami University and the Miami Tribe are proud of this work and of the more than 140 Myaamia students who have attended Miami since 1991 through the Myaamia Heritage Award Program.

  1. Tom Poetter, Chair of University Senate Executive Committee, made announcements and remarks.

Special Reports

  1. Enrollment Update presentation – Brent Shock, Vice President for Enrollment and Student Success.
  • Highlights include:
    • Fall 2022 Applications are up 1.7% over last year; confirmations currently at 4,062; GPA is up this year
    • Smaller class this year - down 11.5% from last year, but that was expected
    • Diverse Student confirmations are down, First generation students are up
    • Honors College cohort has 478 students, 18% YTD increase in international students vs. Fall 2021
  • Senator asked for more detail on the diversity stats. Mr. Shock will return with more detail and indicate that the statistics show growth.
  • Senator asked for more information about support resources for first generation students. Mr. Shock gave an overview of partnerships on campus that are working in that space together. UNV 101 cohorts, meeting with support offices regularly, and additional wrap-around supports (i.e. Rinella, technology fund).
  • Senator asked about the impact of test-optional policies and the meaning behind curricular strength. Mr. Shock shared that 40% did not submit scores. The curriculum strength statistic is an internal number that measures the curriculum that a high school offers. 
  • Senator asked about institutional selectivity. What is our acceptance rate and what does that mean? Mr. Shock shared that it’s the percentage of applications that are accepted. The numbers in Fall 2020 were impacted by the pandemic, causing the acceptance rate to be artificially high. Some use this as a proxy for quality. Miami’s application pool is very different from others and it’s very strong. It’s so strong that you can go deep and not impact the quality of a class. 
  • Senator asked about melt. It’s about 6.5% melt this year. Melt is % of students who say they are coming to Miami then don’t show up.
  1. Myaamia Center Report presentation – Kara Strass, Director of Miami Tribe Relations and Daryl Baldwin, Director of Myaamia Center.
  • Introduction was made in the Myaamian language native to this area.
  • Highlights include:
    • Myaamia Center is a tribal research office that is tribal-directed on Miami’s campus. The Center has been on campus since 2001 and they have 18 Full time staff. This year, they have their largest cohort - 44 Myaamia students.
    • Focus Theme - Tribal Sovereignty - Questions about the theme can be found on their website. 
      • With support from the Provost's Office and EHS they are working on ways to incorporate Tribal Sovereignty into the curriculum. EHS has 10 faculty meeting with the Myaamia Center this year and they hope to open it up to the rest of campus to work with indigenous topics.
      • They are looking for faculty wanting to connect with the Myaamia Center - Courses can connect to their work. Reach out to Kara Strass.
    • Events this year will include 50th anniversary events (online conference and fall celebration week November 6-13), public speakers, courses and seminars, projects and initiatives (i.e. Communities of learning to help faculty who want to engage more with indigenous topics).
    • Educational Initiatives - working with Miami Online on 9-part docuseries to be released in Fall 2022.
    • Commemorative items available to purchase in the bookstore - 50th anniversary blanket and an anniversary holiday ornament.
    • Their best work comes from relationships. They encouraged Senators to get to know them so they can do more meaningful and sustainable activities.

New Business

  1. SR23 xx - Curriculum & Instruction, Master of Education – Scott Sander, Associate Clinical Professor
  • Note: This was taken out of order to accommodate the speaker’s schedule. The agenda does not reflect this change in timing. No concerns were raised from the floor.
  • This will replace the existing M.Ed. program in Transformative Education. Building the program from the ground up, designed to meet specific needs.
  • Program narrative that aligns with the University’s focus on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in order to attract and prepare educators who are willing and able to create classroom and community spaces where all individuals and their diverse identities feel safe and have a sense of belonging. Program pillars that carry the narrative and inform each and every course: Inquiry, Anti-racist, Community, and Agency.
  • Partially funded through Boldly Creative 3; No new resources required at this time. Fully online with most courses taught by permanent faculty.
  • Senator asked how many credit hours the program requires and the size of the cohort. 30 credit hours. 20 in the first cohort and then see if there will be capacity to grow a larger cohort.
  • Senator asked if the program is revenue generating. Yes, with the help of the Ohio teach grant which gives a 25% reduction in tuition.
  • Senator congratulated Scott on the program then expressed concern about pulling permanent faculty away from teaching undergraduate courses to teach graduate classes. Faculty who are a part of the design of the program will be the ones teaching the graduate program. 
  • Senator brought up concern for anti-racism language in the program and it possibly being pulled for such language. 
  • Senator brought up concern for the program being accessible to teachers who teach during the day so they won’t have time to participate in the program. That is the reason why this is being offered online. 

Special Report

  1. Senate Working Sessions presentation – Nathan French, Senator.
  • What is a working session? Dialogue-centered deliberation oriented conversational sessions (90 minutes) that occur in off weeks and are not mandatory. Address topics of interest .Intended for consensus and community-building between Senate and the University community.
  • Every working session has a topic/schedule/agenda published before the session. One Senator serves as a moderator. Brief opening presentation by guest. Notes produced by the facilitator. 
  • Provost Mullenix asked how Senators will know what will be discussed each week. Information will come from Exec. committee.
  • Senator asked if there has been discussion about the working sessions being part of Senate Bylaws. Not yet, but if there is enough energy and interest SEC Chair would like to move forward this Spring. Senator said they would prefer it not go into Bylaws. Another Senator agreed with that Senator.
  • SEC Chair hopes Senators will consider participating in working sessions because it builds faculty dialogue.

Approval of Senate Minutes

A motion was received, seconded, and carried to approve the April 25, 2022 minutes of the University Senate. (48-Yes, 0-No, 0-Abstain)

Consent Calendar

  1. The following items were received and accepted on the Consent Calendar: 
  • Graduate Council Meeting Minutes 04.05.2022 
  • LEC Council Meeting Minutes 05.06.2022 
  • Undergraduate Research Committee Annual Report 2021-2022 

Provost Update

  1. Chair of the University Senate, Provost Mullenix, provided an update.
  • The Provost’s Office serves as a support center. 
  • Provost Mullenix has met with a lot of great faculty and staff over summer. Celebrating faculty and being more visible. She would like to create a University Faculty Advisory Committee. Deans will be asked for nominations to serve on this committee.
  • Overall Goals for 2022-2023:
    • GOAL 1: Celebrate and Support Faculty/Staff and build community 
    • GOAL 2: Advance and Enhance the Teacher/Scholar Model grants
    • GOAL 3: Further Miami/RISE recommendations - years 4 of 5 year
  • Record breaking year in external grant funding: $35.2M.
  • Faculty Support for Student Success workshops - Dana Cox and Amy Bergerson. Dates at the link to RSVP and in an email received. All invited, but limited to 50 per session.
  • U.S. district court for the Northern District of Ohio issued a decision last week that Room Scans, used during remote proctoring, violate a student’s constitutional rights against unlawful search and seizure. As a result, we are, as a community, taking the following actions:
  • Miami University will no longer include the room scan as a selectable option within our remote proctoring software. This change has already been universally applied by our online proctoring provider and room scans are no longer available for use.
  • Also within our proctoring software, the option to blur the background of all images, similar to the well-known Zoom feature, will be available by the end of the calendar year. We are working with our provider to make this a universal and required feature for all users as soon as it becomes available. Faculty and students should be aware that we are working as quickly as possible to make it happen.


  1. Following tradition, Provost Mullenix passed on the gavel to Tom Poetter. The regular meeting of University Senate was adjourned at 5:00 p.m.