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University Senate
March 5, 2012

I. Approval of Agenda: approved.

II. Approval of minutes from February 6, 2012.

III. Senate President’s Report (M. Schwartz)

  • M. Schwartz filled in for F. Walter.
  • Senate elections are coming up and urge faculty to nominate themselves or colleagues.

IV. Motion to disband the Library Personnel Policy Committee (M. Schwartz)

  • There is a motion from the Executive Committee to disband the Library PPC and move it into the A&S Promotion and Tenure Committee included in the motion are amendments to the by-laws.
  • Vote was taken: all in favor, none opposed, no abstentions. Motion passes.

V. Proposal for GPNC Grading (S. Sutherland)

  • The Undergraduate Council voted unanimously in favor of a change to the Pass/No Credit policy.
  • Reasoning for the new GPNC (Graded/Pass/No Credit) grading option is that it would encourage students to try new courses.
  • Stony Brook has allowed students to take up to 8 credits of courses per semester as Pass/No Credit. Motivation was to enable a student to take a course outside of their comfort zone without damaging their GPA.
  • A great many students use P/NC as way out of a course that is too hard and they have little or no motivation to work very hard in the course.
  • GPNC option leaves many feature of P/NC in place but allows students to elect a set point at which they will earn a letter grade. It was explained how the extension to P/NC works.
  • Motion was made to accept: all in favor, none opposed, 3 abstentions.

VI. Middle States Re-Accreditation (C. Robbins)

  • This is a three-year process. Will be working for the next 2 ½ years before Middle States visits the campus.
  • The Planning committee consists of faculty, staff and students.
  • It will be an open and transparent process encouraging involvement from many.
  • Self-study will be comprehensive. Looking at every aspect of the University including undergraduate, graduate, professional schools, etc.
  • Report must be based on evidence and data driven.
  • There are fourteen standards of institutional excellence.
  • Keys to success: Focus on the usefulness of self-study to the institution, communicate, use technology to assist when possible, and logistics.
  • The bottom line is to create and document a comprehensive culture of assessment that addresses the fourteen standards of excellence.

Dr. Frank Fowler asked if the Javits Lecture Hall was going to be brought up to par with other classrooms insofar as technology.

  • Hope to improve things incrementally because of constraints with the state.
  • A meeting is coming up about what will happen with the Javits Lecture Hall in terms of rehabbing and what it will look like.

VII. Report from the President (S. Stanley) – Written Report Provided.

VIII. Provost’s Report (D. Assanis)

  • Sam Aronson is stepping down as Director of BNL. Dr. Assanis, Vice President for Brookhaven Affairs, will Co-Chair the search.
  • Discussed the March 2012 Provost’s Lecture Series.
  • The 16th annual Swartz Foundation Mind/Brain Lecture will be on Monday, April 16th at 4:30 p.m. Featured lecturer is John P. Donoghue, Ph.D., the Henry Merritt Wriston Professor of Neuroscience and Engineering, and Director of the Institute for Brain Science at Brown University.
  • The 17th annual Leadership Symposium will be on Wednesday, March 21st at 9:00 a.m. The symposium will feature a talk by Jennifer Engle entitled “Closing the Gaps: Promoting College Access and Success for Low-Income Students”.

IX. Report from the East Campus (K. Kaushansky)

  • There is an active search for a new Chair of Neurology. Have 8 candidates interviewing for this position.
  • The new Cancer Center Director and the new Dean for Research have arrived this week.
  • Scientists all being actively recruited in the imaging arena.
  • Working with the College of Engineering – have put together a team that came up with a white paper for a new academic program granting Master’s and Ph.D.’s in Biomedical Informatics. White paper has gone to President Stanley.
  • Major re-accreditations: Program in School of Nursing and Graduate Program in Public Health care.
  • New CEO: Looking at C.V.’s. Chose 10 for airport interviews.

X. Report from UUP (A. Shertzer)

  • Negotiations are moving forward – one of two of the last unions.
  • Legislative agenda: putting back another 25 Mil. into the hospital. FOIL Bill to look into the foundations, e.g., the Stony Brook Foundation and the Research Foundation. Looking into the TAP gap cap.
  • Downstate Medical School is hiring non-UUP people.

XI. Old Business: no old business.

XII. New Business: no new business.

Meeting adjourned at 4:50 p.m.

Submitted by:

Laurie Theobalt

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