Report of the 2004-2005 Rensselaer

Faculty Senate Planning & Resources Committee


Roger N. Wright, Chair

May 4, 2005



††††††††††† The 2004-2005 Faculty Senate Planning & Resources Committee met on November 17, December 8, and February 9.Agendas for these meetings are attached.The focuses and efforts of the Committee may be summarized as follows.


††††††††††† Deanís Planning Retreat.Some of the committee attended the annual Deanís Planning Retreat of November 8, 2004.Reaction was relatively positive, although it was acknowledged that much of the planning may be compromised by subsequent budgeting.


††††††††††† Pension Plan Survey.In the context of debate over the faculty prioritization of pension plan issues, the Committee made an offer to the Faculty Senate leadership to administrate an appropriate survey.


††††††††††† Revitalization of Corporate Interface.Concern has been raised regarding the decline in faculty research grants from industrial sources, particularly in view of Rensselaerís past strengths in this area.A meeting was held with Bill Shumway, Director of Development, with Provost Peterson in attendance.Bill Shumway presented an informal summary of current Rensselaer efforts to secure industrial funding.It appeared that much of this activity involved meetings of Rensselaer center and program directors with industrial contacts, particularly regarding current Rensselaer thrust areas.The Planning & Resources Committee emphasized the need for development office assistance for faculty-level industrial entrepreneurship, especially in view of the close and longstanding ties that many Rensselaer faculty have to the industrial sector.


††††††††††† Middle States Accreditation Input.In response to a request from the Rensselaer Middle States Standard 3 Committee, the Planning & Resources Committee submitted information on faculty participation in resource planning.General Committee operations and, in particular, the 2003-2004 Faculty Early Input program were cited as illustrations of faculty participation.


††††††††††† Evaluation of Faculty Participation in Planning at Other Institutions.To gain perspective on some of the current Rensselaer concerns, the Committee began a review of somewhat comparable institutions.A significant summary of policies and practices was available from Dartmouth, and this was reviewed accordingly.


††††††††††† Trustee Finance Committee Monitoring.Consistent with past practices, the Faculty Senate Planning & Resources Committee chair participated in the Trustee Finance Committee Meetings and preliminary sessions thereof.


††††††††††† Committee Access to Resource Information.The privileges that the Committee enjoys regarding access to Rensselaer data bases are uncertain, particularly as these data bases are presently undergoing development and extension.The matter will require renewed effort on the part of the 2005-2006 Faculty Senate Planning & Resources Committee.