December 7, 2009
I. Approval of tentative agenda: approved.
II. Approval of minutes from November 2, 2009: approved.
III. Senate President’s Report (M. Schwartz)
- The Senate held a town hall meeting on the proposed hotel. It was very well attended.
- Korea/Songdo Campus: The Executive Committee is still working on a set of procedures to evaluate the campus.
- Talking to legislators regarding the SUNY Flex proposal which was endorsed by the SUNY Board of Trustees.
IV. UUP Report
- Have reached a tentative agreement on the Sr. Lecturer position.
- Legislature passed Tier 5 pension reform.
- On Feb. 11th President Stanley will address the HSC UUP chapter on the budget. The topic will be his vision for the HSC and the Medical Center.
V. President’s Report (S. Stanley)
- No good news on the budget. Revised financial plan submitted by the Chancellor’s Office was approved by the SUNY Board of Trustees, allocating a cut of $8.6 Mil to Stony Brook that will annualize to approximately $11.5 Mil in 2010-2011.
- Stony Brook will be hosting one of seven state-wide SUNY conversations on February 4, 2010. Theme: Energy and Sustainability. There will be a group of 200 faculty/staff/students visiting the campus.
- Setting up working groups for the VP for Research search. Nancy Squires will be Chairing the committee.
- GSO reps would like to meet with administration to share their concerns.
- There was a question regarding a different site for the hotel. There is no other site on campus. The site was established twenty years ago.
VI. Provost’s Report (E. Kaler)
- A student from Ward Melville was named the winner of the Siemens Award. The student was advised by Dr. Carlos Simmerling.
- External Review of Melville Library was done this past September. The acquisitions budget for the Library is woefully inadequate. Primary goal being the bench marking of resources and their allocation (print vs. electronic resources). President Stanley and Provost Kaler are each making an additional commitment of $500,000 to the Library for acquisitions.
- Andrew White will be the Interim Director.
- Completed negotiations with Elsevier. New five-year contract.
VII. MA Program (L. Martin and M. Remmler)
- Why increase MA Programs? Seventy-five percent of graduate enrollment nationwide, with 90%of degrees awarded. There was an increase of 43% in the last decade. Lower employment rate and higher annual income.
- Ground rules and approaches and the mechanisms that Provost Kaler established are: Must not impact negatively doctoral or undergrad programs and opportunities and must be fully fundable via revenue sharing. We have to utilize existing capacity in Ph.D./MA course, combine 5 year MA Programs and combine degree programs.
- Must be fully fundable via revenue sharing.
- Tuition sharing: effective 2009/10 increases in tuition revenue over the 2008/09 baseline will be shared. Thirty percent administrative and academic support, seventy-percent academic area.
- Seventy percent of tuition increases over 2008/09 baseline will be returned to the academic area. This will be for the MA Programs. We are also negotiating self-paying Ph.D.’s and looking at new Undergraduate programs.
- Distribution model was done as a plan. Master’s/Ph.D./UG plan level distribution: Department 55%, Dean 7.5% and Provost 7.5%. MAT Plan level distribution a little bit different: Department 40%, SPD 10%, PEP/Science Ed 5%, Dean 7.5% and Provost 7.5%. Non-Matrics used a course level distribution: Department 55%, Dean 7.5% and Provost 7.5%
- Fall 2009 increase in tuition distributed to the departments by 11/09. Spring 2010 will be distributed by 4/10.
- Meeting with departments and programs for the last three months. Came up with ways to accelerate the process. Some of the ways in which we can do this is the coordinating college/school, GS, Provost curricular review, registered concentration in existing degrees then register separate degree, and increasing Manhattan programs.
- Discussed the tuition table by AAFTE (percent in state/out of state). Looked at typical costs of delivering a single course.
- The average instructional costs: TA/GA - $7,573 (one course); Adjuncts - $4,000 (one course); Lecturers - $50,000 (6 courses); and tenure track faculty - $75,000 (2-4 courses). Looked at typical costs of delivering a single course.
- Tuition sharing for Fall 2009: Initial departmental allocations are complete. Allocations are based on snapshot data. If students are not registered by this date, revenue will be lost. Only increases in tuition are allocated. Negative changes are being absorbed by the Provost.
- Overall increase in master’s tuition in the provostial area was over $900K.
- 70% or approximately $650K returned to provostial area. Does not include paying Ph.D. Students.
Charles Taber (Chair, Senate Ad Hoc Committee on MA Programs)
- The Committee decided early on that they wanted to provide as practical assistance as they possibly could to programs that were contemplating either adding masters or extending enrollment in masters.
- Two kinds of help: 1) Develop a set of important questions that programs should be asking to help them determine whether they are a viable candidate for that MA program or extension of that program. 2) A product that the committee in the midst of producing is a concise guide to programs that want to add Masters programs including how to negotiate the local and SUNY processes for getting their programs approved.
- Different groups on campus should be consulted (C. Taber, L. Martin, M. Remmler, and the Provost, to name a few).
- Talk to different programs on campus. Some programs “touch” other programs; there could be a synergy between programs. Consult with the colleges early on in the process.
- Will offer practical guides and useful questions on the Graduate School website and the Senate website.
Dylan Selterman (President, GSO)
- Feedback from PhD student representatives through the Graduate Student Organization (GSO), from the following departments/programs: Anthropology, Ecology & Evolution, Linguistics, Hispanic Languages and Literature, History, Philosophy, Psychology, Biomedical Engineering
- Most Masters programs working quite well (logistically). Positive (or at least neutral) feedback outweighed the concerns expressed.
- In some departments: PhD & Masters students are in totally separate programs, with separate course structures & bureaucracy, whereas in others: PhD & Masters students are at least partially or totally integrated.
- In programs that are separate, PhD students report almost no interaction with Masters students, and no interruption/disturbance of PhD student education.
- In programs that are integrated, some grad students in a couple of departments reported a concern that this integration wasn’t working well and that PhD students experienced a decline in quality of classes (academic discourse/discussion, attention from faculty, and physical space in courses).
- PhD students in some departments also expressed that Masters students are treated as second-class citizens. What does this mean in practice? Masters students are a lesser priority (teaching & advising) from the faculty; receive less attention & care in classes; Faculty less receptive to feedback from grad students about Masters student issues. Masters students left out of departmental social functions. This treatment is clearly visible (reported by PhD students), with no attempt to conceal it.
- Masters students seem to be experiencing some illusions about what their degree is going to do for them after they graduate. Quite a few PhD students report that they sense that Masters students think their degrees will either serve as a leg-up (or back-door) to get into their SBU PhD program (which isn’t true) or that their degree signifies some applied educational training for a non-academic employment setting (which may or may not be true depending on the program).
- Faculty in these departments (and employees in the Career Center) for the most part had no experience or knowledge about what someone with a Masters would do (what jobs are available) after completion of the degree (esp. in the newer programs). Faculty & Career Center employees need to be well versed on specific career opportunities for Masters students.
- Many PhD students expressed that they are currently ready, willing, & able, to help with the mentoring & socialization of Masters students into their respective areas. But, they are asking for more guidance and direction from faculty on how to do this effectively. This demonstrates that PhD students are eager to participate and to help as much as possible. Faculty & administration should not hesitate to employ PhD students in the effort to expand and improve on Masters programs.