FACULTY REPRESENTATIVE ASSEMBLY MEETING
February 12, 2021
Attendance: Venkat Reddy, Tom Christensen, Chuck Litchfield, Michael Lightner, David Weiss, David Moon, Minette Church, Andrea Hutchins, Lynn Gates, Joe Craig, Margaret Harris, Deborah Kenny, Monique French, Martin Key, James Van Scotter, Andrea Bingham, Monica Yoo, Diane Stutey, John Lindsey, Jena McCollum, Suzanne Cook, David Havlick, Claire Rau, Christine Robinson Coon, Roger Martinez, Emily Mooney, Erica Allgood, Wendy Haggren, Lei Zhang, Matthew Jabaily, Michael Landon-Murray, Thomas Aicher, Glen Whitehead, Stephen Suh, Laura Eurich, Larry Eames, Karin Larkin, Dave Anderson, Joel Tonyan
Call to Order / Approval of Minutes:
Motion to approve the minutes from December 11, 2020 meeting by Minette Church
Seconded by Monica Yoo
Motion passed with 23 in favor, 0 opposed and 3 abstentions
Reports of Visitors:
Venkat Reddy, Chancellor:
We are very glad to be able to give relief on furloughs, retroactive to January 1, 2021 and thank everyone for their support during that time. We are still not out of the woods yet, as we are dependent on enrollments. With the immediate need to go to remote work when the pandemic hit, we are considering what the future of work might look like when things ease up post-COVID. We would like to put a taskforce group together to discuss these scenarios. Human Resources has many trainings going on currently. The Equal Pay Act was effective on January 1, 2021. We are examining how quickly we can address inequities and are looking at the larger inequities first. We are now announcing pay range for open positions. Vaccinations for K-12 teachers have been prioritized over higher ed and we are making our case to move the higher ed faculty up in priority. They are collecting data now to give to the state. We are also requesting more Cares money from the federal government and CU is leading the way in this effort. The online initiative continues with a change in leadership to Dean Karen Markel. Cyber money will continue for 3 more years and we have hired some tenure-track faculty with the money. Seventy percent of the funding is done for the new EAS building. The MOSAIC renovation will be completed next month. T. Rowe Price will complete the new Career Center in Fall 2021. The Sales Force implementation is coming along. The Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion is holding Listening Sessions every month for faculty, staff and students. The city of Colorado Springs is celebrating its 150th anniversary with a special program which will include contributions from UCCS next week. Dan Wilkerson is our new legal consultant, replacing Jennifer George. Steve Linhart and Mike Belding are retiring. Amanda Allee is our new Dean of Students. There are lots of questions and directions needed for future planning and we need faculty involvement and input in doing this with keeping our mission in mind.
Tom Christensen, Provost:
There is still some confusion about the academic calendar for Spring, which is why an email went out recently to all faculty to review those major items. Spring Break has been split into two separate breaks; a partial one for 2/17-2/19/21 and another partial break for 3/22-3/23/21. Classes will return to their original modality format on 2/22/21. Summer semester will be similar to Spring with all the same modalities and not fully remote. We’re not sure if social distancing will still be in effect for Fall 2021, but the assumption is yes, so we may need to restrict classroom modalities again along with room capacities still being restricted. IT has upgraded lots of classrooms to accommodate teaching modalities. At this time, higher ed is not prioritized for vaccines, but by Fall, hopefully, many will be vaccinated. We cannot require folks to be vaccinated. We’re doing a good job with the reviewing and nominating process for distinguished professors campus-wide, which is not automatic. We have updated the Primary Unit Criteria along with the new Regent Policy #5. We are now working on the campus policy to update it to correspond with these other revisions. We have made some changes due to comments received on the Centers and Institutes policy. Promotions and multi-year contracts are being reviewed. Another tenure clock stop is possible, allowing faculty to return, if desired; the postponement of a raise is a consideration. The new Bachelor of Arts in Childhood Education degree was approved by the Board of Regents.
Michael Lightner, CU Vice President for Academic Affairs:
A presentation was given regarding APS 1025 – Uniform Grading. In order to change this APS, a vote from all the CU campuses’ Faculty Assemblies is required, with 60% of the vote needed to pass. We will be running this through EPUS and the voting process by the end of the semester so that we can have this in place by July 1 for Fall Semester. Please send any comments to Mike Lightner.
Chuck Litchfield, Vice Chancellor for Administration and Finance:
We are offering asymptomatic Covid testing at the Lane Center for faculty and staff. If you are exhibiting Covid symptoms, you will need to arrange that testing with your primary care physician. We are not sure what will happen with the variants and where they will go now. The Wellness Center will be doing random surveillance testing of students in the residence halls, while commuter students will need to see primary care or public health service professionals. We have been approved as a Point of Dispensing (POD) for Phase II and Phase III vaccine distribution at the Recreation Center, which will be closed to the public and only servicing UCCS faculty, staff and students. We are down 7.3% in Spring enrollment, but we are within 7% of our budget. Keep in mind that these results are skewed by Covid. Retention from Fall to Spring has been very good. We are 2.8% down in enrollment for Fall, but we’ve been graduating huge classes the last two years and admitting smaller classes in the Fall. On Free App Day, we had the largest increase in applications of any university in Colorado and we have remained in that spot. We are 19% up in total applications, but we are down 23% in transfer applications. International applications are up 7% and grad programs are up 18%, so we are starting from a good place. We have three budget scenarios we are working with currently. The Regents will allow for a pay increase range depending on enrollment numbers, so there is a possibility of a resolution on this issue. One question raised is do we move to a calendar year instead of an academic year for raises? An issue with that is since we are state employees, we are on a state fiscal year timeline now. A reminder that faculty promotions are still funded as normal.
(see Faculty Advisory Committee on the Budget); election nominations starting 2/15/21
Past President’s Report
Reports from Standing Committees:
Personnel & Benefits:
No report – have not met yet
Still working on improving gender marking options in HR system
Not present – no report
Committee on Disability:
Not present – no report
Misconduct in Research, Scholarship & Creative Activities:
Not present – no report
Committee on Research:
No report – have not met yet
Reports from Representatives:
The Faculty Assembly Executive Committee moves that the Faculty Representative Assembly adopt the following resolution:
BE IT RESOLVED that the UCCS campus faculty categorical designation Non-Tenure Track Faculty (NTTF) be changed to Instructional, Research, and Clinical (IRC) faculty.
(Motion passed unanimously with 28 in favor, 0 opposed and 0 abstentions)
Motion to adjourn the Faculty Assembly Meeting by Minette Church
Seconded by Claire Rau
Motion passed unanimously
Meeting adjourned at 2:00 p.m.