March 7, 2016
I. Approval of tentative agenda
II. Approval of minutes from February 1, 2016
III. President’s Report (E. Feldman)
IV. Discussion with the President (S. Stanley)
V. Report from the Provost (S. Tsirka)
VI. Discussion with the Vice-President for the Health Sciences (K. Kaushansky)
VII. Update from the Ad Hoc Committee on Club Red
VIII. Governor’s Proposed Budget (J. Greiman)
IX. Initiative on Diversity (J. Greiman)
X. Library Services Committee Report (R. Shrock)
XI. Vote on Proposals from the Dean of Arts and Sciences (S. Kopp)
XII. Old Business
XIII. New Business
February 1, 2016
I. Approval of agenda: approved.
II. Approval of minutes from December 7, 2015: Dr. Sanders had changes to V. sixth bullet.
The Secretary of the Senate, Kathleen Monahan, is chairing the meeting for the President of the University Senate, Dr. Feldman.
III. Discussion with the President (S. Stanley)
- State budget: In detail in my report. He suggested that Judy Greiman and Bob Megna, our new Sr. Vice President for Administration, report on the budget at a future meeting.
- Budget: the extension of SUNY 2020 by the Governor. This is incredibly important to SBU and all of the campuses in SUNY and has been supported by the Undergraduate Student Government. One of the advantages of an extension of SUNY 2020 is the predictability of modest increases in tuition which allow families to plan. A few differences from a previous version of SUNY 2020. There is an emphasis on cost savings and no change to the maintenance of effort. There is no increase in state allocation. The bad news has to do with critical maintenance. The Stony Brook infrastructure is decaying. We have 50 plus year old infrastructures in many cases. In the past we received as much as $80M per year to support critical maintenance. Under this budget, our share is up to about $21M. However, we have a backlog of over $400M worth of projects that we want to be able to do. Our goal is at least $80M.
- Tuition: Forty percent of Stony Brook students have zero debt. Those that do have a much lower debt then the national average. Our default rate on student loans is 2.9%, which puts us in the lowest third of the 10 AAU Publics.
- Diversity: Taking more engaged look into diversity on our campus in an effort to improve our notion of how people feel and the air of respect and acceptance at SBU under Judy Greiman’s leadership. Some of the concerns are universal and they are not just about race, but may include acceptance in terms of ethnicity or gender. There are concerns that some people are not feeling welcome. I have asked my staff to develop a plan which should be done in two weeks. I would be very interested in this body’s comments on the plan. I will be advocating for bias training for faculty.
- We are celebrating Black History Month featuring events all month long.
- Diversity Mini grants applications are due on February 26th.
N. Goodman: The legislature is not interested in raising tuition and a true maintenance of effort. At the last SUNY Faculty Senate meeting it was suggested to Carl McCall that we negotiate a switch and asked the legislature to work with the Governor to pass a maintenance of effort and drop SUNY 2020 bill. Would you be supportive of that? S. Stanley: The danger in coupling them that way is that you might end up with neither. I think both are necessary and I would advocate for both. We really need to educate the legislature about the fact that many of our students don’t view this as an increased burden. They understand costs go up. N. Goodman: The legislature is concerned about adding more burden to students. What I am suggesting—and to which Chairman McCall seemed receptive to—is a Plan B if, because the intransigence of the Legislature to SUNY 2020 and the intransigence of Governor Cuomo to a true Maintenance of Effort, puts the passage of either in jeopardy.
IV. Discussion with the Provost (D. Assanis)
- Development of Applied Learning: The SUNY Board of Trustees adopted a resolution calling for SUNY to develop a plan to ensure all students enrolled in an academic programs have access to an applied or experiential learning opportunity. Part one of SBU’s Applied Learning Campus Plan is due February 15. The plan will include three parts. Nancy Goroff, Marianna Savoca and Braden Hosch are working closely together with a couple of committees from the senate as well as the experiential learning group in developing the plan. It will be vetted by the Experiential Learning Working Group.
- The next increment of SBU-BNL Seed Grant money is underway. The President has been providing some support (approximately $2K) over a period of years. Funding level is between $30,000 and $45,000 which will be distributed to proposals submitted jointly by SBU and BNL scientists. Proposals are due on April 16th.
- The Arts, Humanities and Lettered Social Sciences Initiatives are programs undertaken by President Stanley and myself to support research and programming in departments associated with humanities, arts, and lettered social sciences. Two such initiatives are the AHLSS Visiting Artists Series and the Graduate Fellowship and Faculty Research Program. The first rounds the relationships between the faculty and the student was less tight then I would like.
- The 2016 Assessment Symposium will be held on February 19th in the SAC Auditorium. The keynote speaker will be Dr. Stephanie Evergreen.
N. Goodman: I appreciate you working with the senate on a number of issues. I’m sure you realize that the plan worked out by the university experiential learning group has to be vetted by the Undergraduate Council.
D. Assanis: It is just a plan. We can try to convene with them before February 15th.
H. Nekvasil: What resources will be allocated for labs, etc. for applied learning?
D. Assanis: We have absolutely no new resources. We will identify the gaps. In discussion with the Dean.
V. Plenary Session Report (D. Bilges)
- Stony Brook University had the honor of hosting the 172nd SUNY Faculty Senate Plenary. It was supposed to be January 22-23rd but unfortunately a blizzard was coming and we had to abbreviate the session and squeeze as much into one Friday.
- We wanted to take the opportunity to showcase the Stony Brook University campus as much as possible.
- Welcoming remarks were given by President Stanley (by video), Provost Assanis and Dr. Feldman.
- Senator Kenneth LaValle was honored with a Friend of the Senate award.
- Conferences and Special Events did an outstanding job.
- Budget Negotiations: Many of the add-ons that the legislature succeeded in getting the Governor to agree to last year in the enacted budget, the Governor did not include in his proposed budget this year, so the legislature will be forced to trying to add these items into the budget again this year. However, the Senate President, Peter Knuepfer, assures us that this year’s executive budget presents a substantial improvement over last year’s in terms of a starting point for negotiations. The Governor has decided that NYC and CUNY should contribute more to their own budget so he has cut their budget by $485M from their state allocations. The Senate’s concern is that if some of those funds are re-instated, this might reduce SUNY’s budget. At the same time, the Governor is providing CUNY with $250 M to cover faculty salary increases. The Senate would like to see the State cover some of mandated SUNY salary increases. At no time do we want any of this to fall on the backs of the students.
- Stony Brook is receiving two SUNY innovation awards worth $1.75M to support its goal in increasing the four year graduation rate.
- Stony Brook along with three other campuses has received $250,000 to build common student learning outcomes and assessments to increase completion and high demand/high impact undergraduate courses.
- There are a number of campus Presidential searches. The search for the President of Delhi is in its final stages and the search for Farmingdale is in its advanced stage. The President of Downstate has recently resigned effective the end of June 1016
- Two resolutions were passed http://www.stonybrook.edu/commcms/univ-senate/senate/key-senate-documents/index.php and click on 172nd Plenary Session.
Meeting adjourned at 4:35pm