April 2020

April 2020

April 2020


April 10, 2020

Attendance:  Venkat Reddy, Tom Christensen, Chuck Litchfield, Glen Whitehead, Mary Coussons-Read, David Weiss, Monique French, Andrea Hutchins, Lynn Gates, Margaret Harris, Deborah Kenny, Kathy Prue-Owens, Martin Key, James Van Scotter, Andrea Bingham, Monica Yoo, Diane Stutey, Pam Carter, Darshika Perera, Suzanne Cook, Leilani Feliciano, Christine Robinson Coon, Kristi McCann, Wendy Haggren, Matthew Jabaily, Tabatha Farney, Stephen Suh, Larry Eames, Elizabeth Daniels, Tisha Mendiola Jessop, Dave Anderson, Joel Tonyan

Call to Order / Approval of Minutes:

Motion to approve the minutes from February 14, 2020 meeting by Deborah Kenny
Seconded by Monica Yoo
Motion passed with 21 in favor, 0 opposed and 3 abstentions


Motion to approve the minutes from March 13, 2020 meeting by Andrea Hutchins
Seconded by Diane Stutey
Motion passed with 16 in favor, 0 opposed and 7 abstentions


Reports of Visitors:

Venkat Reddy, Chancellor: 
The Chancellor expressed his appreciation to the faculty for their ability to adapt to the current situation so well and so quickly.  It was extraordinary for all classes to be able to transition to online learning with such little notice when the COVID-19 emergency situation hit suddenly.  Safety for our faculty, staff and students is our top priority and we are doing everything possible to keep our campus healthy and to keep our students able to continue with their education.  We are trying to simulate normal campus life as much as possible.  We are working with the CU system on making critical decisions.  There is a federal relief package (Higher Education Relief Fund in the CARES Act) that is coming to universities.  We have established a COVID-19 Incident Command team consisting of key campus individuals from all areas with Chuck Litchfield, Tom Christensen, Carlos Garcia and George Reed managing all items of focus and keeping communication open and flowing continuously.  Classroom instruction has gone very well with the fast transition to remote learning.  We will have a virtual commencement program on May 15 this year.  Please check the Commencement website for more information.  Carlos and his team did a great job moving students out from the dorms; we currently have about 22 students on campus.  We have prorated refunds for students and we have offered our help to the community if they need our resources.  The Recreation Center is putting out wellness videos for faculty, staff and students.  We will be paying our student employees until the end of the semester, but we are unsure about summer semester.  Fundraising is still going on.  A lead challenge gift of $8 million from Lyda Hill Philanthropies will lay the initial groundwork for the creation of the National Institute for Human Resilience, and we must raise an additional $7.75 million for a total cost of $15.75 million for the project.  We continue to raise money for the UCCS Fund for Excellence for students.  There is also $.25 million for cybersecurity and a $6 million grant for the College of Business for grants.  UBAC meetings provide feedback on campus savings and financial issues, i.e., compensation is on hold; we’ll lose international students; and we will need to go bigger online.  Faculty promotions have a separately funded base, but we are not certain about Senior Instructor promotions at this time.  Both Roger Martinez and Dave Anderson are on President Kennedy’s CU Online Accelerator Committee regarding online and tech enablement.  Harper Johnson, who was recently named as Associate Vice President for CU’s Transformation and Innovation Program, is also involved.  The big programs going through the system are referred to as “pipe” programs, and the campus programs are referred to as “non-pipe.”  All are in the works.

Tom Christensen, Provost: 
As I’m sure you know, summer classes will be held online.  We are currently planning on Fall semester being back on campus.  We are granting an automatic one-year stoppage of the tenure clock for all pre-tenure faculty for 2019-20.  This means that each pre-tenure faculty member, not already on a tenure-clock stop for this year, will get one more year before initial review, comprehensive review and/or tenure/promotion review.  Faculty can choose to opt out of this tenure clock stoppage and go up for reappointment or tenure on their previously established schedule if they are still in good shape and are ready.  Students can request their grading basis for full semester length courses be changed from a letter grade to pass/fail through May 10.  It is recommended that they discuss this change with their academic advisors first.  Pass/Fail grading had to be modified so that they can transfer more easily to other institutions: P+ (passed with C- or better), P (same definition), F (same definition).  We will continue using FCQs in the Fall.  Should we relax it for this semester?

Chuck Litchfield, Vice Chancellor for Administration & Finance: 
We have a budget deficit of $6 million at the end of this fiscal year.  The state of Colorado budget is down $3 billion, mainly due to the COVID-19 health emergency.  We will receive some federal relief monies through the Higher Education Relief Fund in the CARES Act in compensation for some of our lost revenues and expenses as a result of COVID-19.  Half of that money is dedicated to emergency student aid and the other half is for institutional needs.  The state might reduce funds to higher ed because of the federal aid package, which would be problematic.  We are 8.5% behind on summer enrollment and fall registration has not started yet.  Orientation dates have been moved to online.  We are seeing that students are unsure of their next steps for college due to this public health emergency situation.

Glen Whitehead, Associate Professor of VAPA - Music: 
Glen presented the Research Framework document to illustrate the research component of the 2030 Strategic Plan.  This initiative includes a stronger communication system with shared governance, which includes adding a non-voting seat on the Faculty Assembly for a research reporting position.


Officer Reports:

President’s Report
There will be an opportunity to congratulate individual students after the virtual Commencement program

President-Elect’s Report
FA Election ResultsFCQ Task Force Results

Past President’s Report
No report

Reports from Standing Committees:

No report – have not met yet

Personnel & Benefits:
Did not meet in March

Faculty Advisory Committee on the Budget:
Not present – no report

Faculty Minority Affairs Committee:
Did not meet in March

Women’s Committee

Non-Tenure Track Faculty

Teaching with Technology

No report

Intercollegiate Athletics:
Not present – no report

Did not meet in March

Committee on Disability:
Not present – no report

Misconduct in Research, Scholarship & Creative Activities:
Not present – no report


Reports from Representatives:



Discussion Item:
The Grade Forgiveness policy continued in ongoing discussion (Note: the attached draft does not yet reflect the feedback from the February meeting discussion).  Some of the points raised included poor students who may not be able to retake a class and would then miss out on graduation; the current number of credits being considered for forgiveness is 15 (average number between 9 – 12; CU Boulder has 21 and CU Denver has 15); if there are academic dishonesty questions, grade forgiveness would not apply; our policy would be open to all level courses.  This is the main agenda item for the next EPUS meeting.  Please send any additional feedback to EPUS.  They intend to bring it to Faculty Assembly at the May meeting and go through the approval process steps.



Motion 1:
The Faculty Assembly Executive Committee moves that the Resolution of Appreciation for UCCS Faculty, Staff, Administration, and Students be approved.
(Motion passed unanimously with 23 in favor, 0 opposed and 0 abstentions)



Motion to adjourn the Faculty Assembly Meeting by David Weiss
Seconded by Pam Carter
Motion passed unanimously
Meeting adjourned at 2:00 p.m.