Faculty Meeting Minutes – February 29, 2008
President Glotzbach called the meeting to order at 3:40pm.
I. Approval of Minutes.
- The minutes from the February 8, 2008 meeting, having been previously distributed, were approved with no emendations.
II. President's Report – Philip A. Glotzbach
- The President announced the appointment of the new Dean of Student Affairs – Rochelle Calhoun, from Mount Holyoke College, who will be starting this summer. He thanked the search committee members for their hard work on this search: Gail Cummings-Danson, Ann Marie Przywara, Mary Lou Bates, Beau Breslin, Mary Correa, Sarah Goodwin, Krista Glencross '10 and Michael Reining '08. He also thanked Barbara Krause and Karen Ernst for their staff support of the search.
- Mary Lou Bates gave an Admissions update: We have experienced another record year, having received over 7,400 applications (an 8% increase from last year) and admitted about 39% early decision applicants (up 19% in early decision applications). Our on-campus target range for the class is 605-610, with an additional 36 in the London program. We saw an increase in applications from international students (456 applications) and students of color (23%). We plan to admit 400 fewer students this spring than last year. With 600 more applications this year, this will mean a 24% acceptance rate; decision letters will be mailed on March 27 to accepted applicants.
- The Board of Trustees retreat was held in Florida last week. The Board discussed the notion of creativity and what that means to them and us. We talked about how we make the case for a liberal arts college to a skeptical public, how we keep Skidmore affordable (even as the costs continue to rise), and other topics related to Skidmore and the liberal arts. The Board gave preliminary budget approvals; approved early release of funds for capital projects and IT; and approved tenure and promotion recommendations as well as requests for sabbaticals and pre-tenure leaves. This Board is very committed to Skidmore and has contributed over $71M in the campaign. The Board has established a process to appoint the next Board chair – they hope to have a new chair identified by the May meeting. Our current chair, Suzanne Corbett Thomas '62 is scheduled to come to the April 25 faculty meeting to address the faculty.
- Gotland University in Sweden is establishing its first liberal arts college, and (largely because of our association with the STINT foundation) we were selected as a model. There will be a Swedish delegation of ten representatives from Gotland University visiting Skidmore on March 3 and 4.
III. Academic Affairs
Dean of the Faculty Report – Muriel Poston:
She announced the following tenure and promotion candidates approved by the Board of Trustees. She thanked members of the Committee on Appointments, Promotion and Tenure (CAPT) for their hard work on this process.
- Susannah Mintz, Associate Professor, Department of English
- Daniel Nathan, Associate Professor, Department of American Studies
- Tenure and Promotion (from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor):
- William Lewis, Department of Philosophy and Religion
- Crystal Moore, Department of Anthropology, Sociology, and Social Work
- Kyle Nichols, Department of Geosciences
- Thomas O'Connell, Department of Math and Computer Science
Dean Poston also announced the following reappointments (reported to the Board):
- Tenure-Track Reappointments:
- Joshua Woodfork – Department of American Studies
- Joshua Ness – Department of Biology
- Monica Das – Department of Economics
- T.H. Reynolds- Department of Exercise Science
- Tillman Nechtman – History
- Hassan López – Department of Psychology
- Non-Tenure Reappointments:
- Senior Artist-in-Residence:
- Alma Becker – Department of Theater
- Jan Vinci – Department of Music
- John Nazarenko – Department of Music
- Greg Herbek – Department of English
- Senior Teaching Associates:
- Catherine Domozych – Department of Biology
- Sue Van Hook – Department of Biology
- Jill Linz – Department of Physics
- Teaching Associate:
- Kara Cetto Bales – Department of Chemistry
- Virginia Murphy-Berman - Department of Psychology
Dean of Special Programs Report – Jeff Segrave
- McCormack Residency is April 3-9. Sir Jonathan Miller will be the honored guest. He is a well-known British author, medical doctor, BBC television host, director of stage and opera, and actor. He will be involved with various classes, presentations; more details will follow. All are encouraged to attend.
IV. Old Business
- On behalf of the Faculty Executive Committee (FEC) - Dan Curley introduced the first motion; provided the context for Part Six; outlined the procedures of the working Group; acknowledged the leadership of VP Kress; and explained the amendments to the proposal.
- 1. Revised Motion – Faculty handbook, Part Six - web site (attachment): http://cms.skidmore.edu/academic_affairs/secure/handbook/upload/Faculty-Handbook-Part-6.doc
- Amendments (see attachment)
Discussion ranged over the following topics:
- A faculty member asked about the process for constituting the membership on the FAB and the AP. Dan Curley responded that there will be a "willingness to serve" call. Then the candidates will be reviewed by FEC and the VPAA to assure appropriate representation on the FAB and the AP. There was some conversation about the appropriate role of the VPAA.
- Jonathan Brestoff '08, President, Student Government Association, referring to item #2 of the amendments, asked for a revision to clarify that complaints against part-time students (who are also employees) will be resolved according to procedures in the Student Handbook. The working group agreed to make the revision.
- A faculty member asked whether CAFR could have access to materials developed by the ADEWD and the FAB in the event that the case was referred to CAFR; VP Kress outlined the procedures in Part Six designed to protect academic freedom and pointed out that these materials would not be available to CAFR. Dick Hihn, for CAFR, and a member of the working group, said that CAFR was satisfied by the Part Six procedures.
- A few faculty members were concerned that Skidmore does not have a procedure for investigating false allegations. The working group will address the area of discipline of tenured faculty when it revisits Part One, Article 10 of the Handbook. VP Kress pointed out that there is no change from the current Handbook with respect to this section; we are also not out of line with similar statements in handbooks from other schools. The point to focus on is that we will not tolerate false allegations. Part Six provides a process that is friendly to complainants, that is responsive to the needs of respondents, but that does not tolerate false complaints.
- A faculty member expressed concern about the policy regarding consensual sexual relationships between students and employees, arguing that consensual sexual relationships between adults should not be prohibited. Several faculty members pointed to the power dynamic inherent in such relationships and supported the policy as written.
- A faculty member asked about charges against non-faculty members. This process will be outlined in the Employee Handbook; Human Resources will revise the process in accordance with Part Six.
Dan Curley pointed out that all the friendly amendments to Part Six are part of the original motion and these do not need to be voted on separately. After lengthy discussion, this motion carried.
- On behalf of the Faculty Executive Committee (FEC) - Dan Curley then introduced the second motion
V. New Business
- There was no new business.
- CEPP – Deb Hall – reported on CAS Policies (with regard to Scribner Seminars) on Withdrawals, Failures, Transfers and First-Year Student Deferrals (see attachment).
- Catherine Golden – Honors Forum – Academic Festival will be held on April 30 (need submissions by April 11).
- The Science & Politics Conference is scheduled for April 4 and 5.
- Susan Belden announced that the Harder Lecture will be given by Paul Calhoun, the F. William Harder Chair of Management and Business, on Wednesday, March 5 at 5:30 p.m. in Gannett.
- Pat Oles – Senior Week Symposium will focus on disabilities. The date is May 2 (more details to follow).
- Maeve Powlick – Honor Code Commission – a discussion will be held on March 24 at 7:00 p.m.; students and faculty are invited.
- Sarah Goodwin and Kristie Ford – Intergroup Relations Institute is sponsoring a program on May 19-21 at Skidmore College with guest speaker Dr. Charles Behling, co-director of the Intergroup Relations Program at the University of Michigan.
- Dan Nathan – Athletic Council update
- Jeff Segrave – Office of the Dean of Special Programs – Invitation to Community Reception at the Surrey Inn.
Meeting adjourned at 5:45 p.m..
Mary Ellen Kokoletsos
Executive Administrative Assistant
Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs