Faculty Senate Minutes

 Return to revised Minutes of 1/17/01

Present: P. Hajela, M. Hanna, K. Anderson, C. Breneman, B. Peterson, L. Kammerer,

S. Anderson-Gold, S. Derby, M. Embrechts, J. Erickson, J. Mitchell, R. Leifer, L. Caporael,

P. Quinn,


Absent: R. Gutmann, K. Craig, P. Boyce, G. Korenowski, K. Fortun, B. Parson, G. Belfort, A. Dyson,


Guests:V. Gregg


Summary:1) Summary on Clinical Faculty

2) Discussion with V. Gregg Vice President of Finance


P. Hajela:I'd like to call the meeting to order.


First item on the agenda is an overview of Clinical Faculty with M. Hanna & L. Caporael (see attached)


B. Peterson:Professional Distance Education use to work as a separate entity that functioned on it's own.It would collect revenue from students and then pay the schools so they could pay the instructors and pay the provost and president a small amount, and then the remainder would be kept for operating expenses. The way PDE function has been changed; we took the funds that used to go from PDE to the schools so they could hire people to teach the distance courses, and this amount has been added to their base line budget, so they can hire tenure track faculty.We have added very large amount of money to the base budget of the schools so that they can use those funds and count on having those funds to support PDE courses.This transition will take awhile; there are a number of faculty whom have earned a significant amount of money by teaching addition PDE courses.There is a move away from that type of practice as there are other things the faculty are supposed to be doing.What the current practice does, is to make a faculty member decide if they are going to spend their time writing papers, pursuing research or teaching an extra course so they can make extra money.You might get a merit raise for writing papers and doing research but you don't get any additional personal resources.We are trying to track the money back into the schools.With this idea the schools would then be able to hire tenure track faculty, instead of people in place that are classified as clinical or adjunct faculty.This new process would allow us to hire more tenure track faculty.


R. Leifer: Does this mean that PDE courses would count as part of a faculty's normal workload?


B. Peterson:Yes, It would count as the faculty normal workload.Not that the faculty would have to do everything that they were doing before and the PDE course as part of their load.Instead of getting extra compensation for extra courses, the PDE course would be part of the normal load and compensation.

This is consistent with the idea that we have undergraduate, graduate education and education for the working professional all as part of the workload.This does not apply to short courses at this time.

M Embrechts:What if a faculty member refuses to teach a PDE course unless it is for extra compensation?


B. Peterson:If we are to make PDE part of the normal load we may come across this.Right now we are in a transition process.I would hope we would not get into confrontational situation. We have enough faculty and enough people that we could work around this.Ten years from now distance education is going to be a fundamental component of education in every institution of higher education. Ten years from now it's not going to be possible for a faculty member to say, "I'm not teaching distance courses."But we need to provide the necessary support to do it well.


S. Derby:To teach a PDE course it takes extra work(ex:you may get paid approx. $5,000 to teach a PDE course which in end amounts to being paid minimum wage for hundreds of extra hours).If you remove the extra compensation faculty receive for teaching a PDE course you will have faculty refusing to teach a PDE course.


B. Peterson:Remember, it is being built in as part of normal faculty load.It doesn’t mean that teaching a PDE course is the same as teaching an on campus course.


C. Brenenan:What happens in a situation where a person is allowed to decide on just how much consulting work they wish to engage in and still be able to do their job?


B. Peterson: Yes, but in consulting you would expect to get additional compensation.What we are doing now is treating Distance Education like consulting.We do it with extra compensation.There is an effort to move away from that.We have department chairs that have indicated that they have faculty not involved in some of the things we want to do because they are opting to do other things and get an additional salary.


R. Leifer: Before we get into the details of amending the constitution have we agree to amend the constitution?The last time this issue came before the senate we had lot controversy on how to proceed with the issue of clinical faculty.I believe the senate needs to resolve this issue before moving forward on changing the constitution.


M. Hanna: No decision has been made to amend the constitution.Yes, there was a lot of controversy that is why we are discussing it again.


B. Peterson:I think the point is here is that the faculty senate does not have to agree to amend the constitution.If ten faculty members put forward a motion on an issue it then can be amended.


S. Anderson Gold: Are you arguing for some type of long-term commitment/contract for clinical faculty?


M. Hanna: With this amend I have proposed clinical faculty will receive longer-term commitments then any other category.I think keeping someone at an instructor's status for ten years is being abusive

What is the different between and instructor and lecturer?

·Lecture is a practitioner appointed to present a specific program, course or lecture series during a specific semester or academic year

·Instructor are an individual who will move to the tenure track with the title of assistant professor, associate professor, or professor, upon completion of doctoral work or other duties that are necessary for tenure-track appointment.


B. Peterson:We are trying to use the instructor title for faculty that we hire in tenure-track position but have not yet formally received their terminal degree.This is a fall back because we cannot hire them in a tenure-track position unless they have a terminal degree and they can't get the terminal degree if they are in a tenure position.So we put them in the instructor title.That is the way we are using the title of instructor.We are trying not to hire people into instructor title position.


L. Caporael:It seems to me that the lecturer definition is frequently used to describe a clinical faculty.


B. Peterson:That is one of the reason we are looking at all these positions because it is very difficult for me to try and delineate the difference between all these titles.


L. Caporeal:I'm quite appalled we are using young people whom are three years away from getting their PhD, but have taken on all the same responsibilities of a tenure track faculty.


B.Peterson:We are trying to clean this up but it's not clear even when you read the handbook.Before the title of clinical was added it was a little clearer.


R. Leifer:If we are classified as one Rensselaer, and we have six members at large could one or more of the at large members come from Hartford?


M. Hanna:I suppose it's not necessary decreased by one, but then again I don't see any danger if this did occur.


R. Leifer:In the past it has been specified that all at large members came from Troy.Is it possible that a person from Hartford could be in contention for one of the members at large positions?


P. Hajela:Could it be possible to expand to five or six, one from each school?


B. Peterson:The way it is written it conceivable that there is one representative from Hartford and all six at large members could be from Hartford.


M. Hanna:The intent is to simply guarantee a representative from Hartford.


L. Caporael:Why doesn't Hartford have it's own faculty senate?


B. Peterson:Hartford has practiced as a separate school for many years.The have a vice president and their human resource person report to the vice president.We have recently changed the structure at Hartford because of the one Rensselaer concept that was put forth in the Rensselaer Plan.G. Gregg is head of finance and the Hartford people report to her.We know have one vice president for finance and one vice president for human resources, and one provost for Rensselaer.So, should the faculty senate try to follow that same model?We are moving toward treating Hartford as a separate academic school, (like the school of engineering, the Lally school of management & technology and Hartford as a school.) The academic dean at Hartford would have a reporting structure similar to the other deans.That is the direction in which I think we are moving towards in terms of administrative structure.I think a single faculty senate is consistent with that.


M. Hanna:A few months ago four faculty members went to Hartford for a meeting, more the half of the faculty was present and it was clearly stated they had no intention of establishing or wanting their own faculty senate.But they definitely wanted faculty representation as they feel there is enough differences in the schools warranty a representative.


B. Peterson:If they have a separate faculty senate then they could set up a process for approving courses curriculum, tenure promotion criteria and that is not the direction the institution is moving.We are looking for a single faculty group, one Rensselaer.


S. Anderson-Gold:In the second part of your proposal are you thinking in terms of separating the issues of enfranchising Hartford because it is the thing to do or because it has been an issue for so long?I would be interested in your theory because I think we need to clear up the issue of titles before we proceed further into this lengthy process.


M. Hanna:What has held up resolving this is issue is:

·Cleaning up of job description(I believe this is occurring or will occur)

·I don't think the class of clinical faculty will go away. We need to resolve this issue.

·The ability to bring someone noteworthy here to fulfill a tenure track position without having to call him or her continuing adjunct. (an adjunct should be someone who does not make a living from being on the payroll.)


S Anderson-Gold:Can we deal with this as a separate issue? Can we deal with Hartford first?


M. Hanna:How do you justify allowing people from Hartford to be partially enfranchise and not allowing the people on our own campus having the same title not be enfranchised?That is the reason I've proposed these two amendments.Both amendments are necessary to achieve our goal.


L. Caporeal:Presentation on amendments to the constitutions


Second Item on the agenda:Presentation from V. Gregg, VP Finance (see attached)


S. Anderson-Gold:Years ago we were talking about faculty salary.Will faculty salary come under consideration again?I know this is not part of the strategy of the performance plan.


V. Gregg:That is certainly been a topic of conversation on terms of expectation.It goes along with promotion and tenure standards.

B. Peterson:The VP of human resources is going to do an analysis of salary structure for each of the schools at Rensselaer compare them to national average and market value.That process is started and is on going, hopefully at the end of the semester. He's been looking at different position and salary structure for different positions.He started with the lowest paid and did a complete analysis and a restructure of those salaries.


M. Hanna:May I ask a question on the new budget.I know it's not in place yet, but I'm not sure why we are going through the motion of -10% to +10%.


V. Gregg:This exercise is to be able to do a recalculation of how we are spending our money.It doesn't mean we will use it to take items away.It just allows us to understand how the budgets allign with the performance plan.All the portfolio owners are being made to look at what items they would include, if they were allotted more money and what they would do differently at a lower amount.This is a very painful but useful process.


B. Peterson:We need a structure and a budget process. You want to do something within your organization. We need to know how important that is and you need to communicate that to us.One-way to do that is to say ok if we want to increase the number of PhD's (which will take a certain amount of resources) what are you willing to stop doing this in order to do this. Every body in an administrative position at all levels is being made to make these types of trade offs.It forces you think about what is important, what are your priorities and how important is this new activity you want to undertake.


Meeting adjourned 5:00 p.m.