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Meeting Notes – November 14, 2016

In Attendance: Leo Bachmair, Diane Bello, Jennifer Dellaposta, Rick Gatteau, Kane Gillespie, Norm Goodman, Cheryl Hamilton, Dana Haugh, Ellen Hopkins, Rob Kukta, Roy Lacey, Deb Serling, William Stanley, Madeline Turan, Alan Tucker, Ayyan Zubair

  1. Minutes of the October 24, 2016 meeting approved with corrections
    1. New Provost was asked to meet with the Council and he has agreed;
    2. Faculty need to care more about the undergraduate students.
  2. Young Scholars Program: Update (Alan)
    1. Brief summary – students in the YSP used to pay $50 or $75 per credit. This stopped when SUNY enforced the regulation that students cannot be in the same classroom and pay differential rates;
      1. Question raised whether possible scholarships could be available for YS in financial need
    2. After further investigation about the possibility of scholarship money for Young Scholars in financial need – by the University or by raising private funds – it was determined that money would probably be unavailable. The professor who raised the concern about the elimination of exceptionally low cost decided not to pursue the issue further;
    3. Brief summary – given the challenge of course availability for current SBU students and the lack of scholarship funds available, the YSP exists in theory, but is difficult to implement. At this time, YS must pay the same tuition cost as current students.
  3. Dr. Charles Robbins - Discussion about adding a Diversity learning objective to the Demonstrate Versatility category in the Stony Brook Curriculum (SBC)
    1. Dr. Robbins indicated this was a proposal by the Stony Brook Curriculum Committee (with members appointed from the Senate Executive Committee and the Provost’s Office);
      1. This initiative is based, in part, upon the University Diversity Plan and the importance of diversity at Stony Brook, the U.S., and the world;
      2. Among the goals of the diversity objective is to engage and educate global citizens;
      3. Many universities (and all of the Big 10) have a diversity component as part of their General Education Curriculum;
      4. This addition is not expected to increase the number of courses required by students since it will likely be combined with other learning objectives (e.g., GLO);
      5. This addition may help incoming students who have already met the majority of “Demonstrate Versatility” learning objectives, but still need appropriate “first semester” courses to complete ;
    2. Dr. Robbins read a description of the learning outcomes related to the diversity objective;
      1. HSC described as possibly meeting the diversity objective through placement of diverse students in groups, teaching communication skills and ethics plus other areas of diversity (Bill);
    3. Concerns
      1. An addition could be a particular challenge for CEAS students in terms of number of credits and seamless transfer requirements; (Rob and Jenn); However, Rob is already working with accreditation bodies regarding diversity, ethics, and other key topics. Will work with Charlie to make sure accreditation requirements and diversity objective are in alignment;
      2. Initially thought this objective was to be implemented in Fall 2017. Kane clarified it will be Fall 2018;
      3. Extensive conversation about the purpose of the diversity objective, what is the goal of the objective, who will teach these courses, and whether it is deliverable (Roy, Ayyan, Rob, Norm, Charlie);
      4. Worry that we engage in some formalized process but make no meaning difference (i.e., a glorified sham) (Roy);
      5. Need for faculty training – optional training is already available;
    4. Potential courses exemplifying diversity objective
      1. French cinema (Francophone) – taught in English (Madeline);
      2. SOC 204 - Intimate relationships (Norm);
    5. Next Steps
      1. Dr. Robbins will share the description of the diversity learning objectives;
      2. Council members will find some examples of designated diversity courses from Big 10 schools;
      3. Dr. Robbins invited to next meeting for further discussion.
  4. Next Meeting: Monday, November 28, 2016.

Submitted by Deb Serling

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