Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes, EXCO - December 1, 2023

EXCO Meeting
Friday, December 1, 2023
2:00 PM
Booker House Conference Room and Zoom

Senators Present and on Zoom:  Alan Beckenstein, Aaron Bloomfield, Jason Druzgal, Juliet Hatchett, Tish Jennings, Michael Kennedy, Michelle Kisliuk, James Lambert, Carol Manning, Andrew Pennock, Brian Pusser, Patrik Sandas, Jeri Seidman, Brian Wright

Ex-Officio and Guests:  Maite Brandt-Pearce, Brie Gertler, Kim Acquaviva, Kathryn Neeley

The Chair called the meeting to order at 2:03 PM

Review and Approval of Minutes

Motion to approve EXCO minutes November 10, 2023:  Jeri Seidman
Second:  Andy Pennock
All Approve
Motion Passes

Old Business

Faculty Senate Elections 2024 – 2025 – Tish Jennings stated that there are currently two candidates for Chair-elect:  Kim Acquaviva and Jeri Seidman. There are four candidates for the faculty senate representative to the BOV, and five for EXCO At-large.  BOV representative nominees are accepted until the end of Friday’s meeting. The other positions are open until later in the Spring. There will be ranked choice voting at the January meeting for the BOV position.

Tish noted that it should be a priority for one of the spring meetings to review/work on bylaws for faculty senate elections.

New Business

Academic Affairs Committee – Co-chairs Sue Saliba and Brian Wright presented a new degree program, a Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Reading Education, and a Master of Education & Graduate Certificate in Reading Education.  Both are offered by the School of Education and Human Development and developed for literacy education. Jillian McGraw presented to the AAC and said there were no barriers to implementing this program, so it was approved by the Committee.

Move to adopt the masters: Aaron Bloomfield, seconded by Tish Jennings.
Move to adopt the certification: Brian Wright and seconded by Tish Jennings

This will now move to the full senate on Friday, December 8.

Athletics Advisory Council – the council met to discuss class requirements for athletes that are traveling. With the ACC adding schools on the West Coast, students will be away from class for longer times.  Discussion ensued with additional issues being raised such as the transfer portal and how new athletes coming to UVA are tracked and supported. Are these students completing credit hours and working toward a degree?  What about student athletes that not only play on a UVA sports team but make a National Sports team or advance independently in tournaments for sports like swimming, tennis, and golf. How do their class absences affect their classwork and overall education and degree goals.  Someone at the University should be collecting this data and investigating these issues.

Presentation to the Board of Visitors – Michael Kennedy

Michael was asked by Rector Hardie to present to the BOV on “What does faculty do?” Michael’s aim is to answer this question through slides highlighting different Professors. Michael did the presentation and listened to feedback from the group. He planned to edit the presentation then submit it to the BOV staff.

Digest of meetings. Michael asked the Committee about the best way to help Senators disseminate faculty senate information. He proposed a newsletter detailing the highlights from the Fall meetings with links so faculty can find out more information if it interests them. Should it be in chronological order or by faculty senate committee? If the newsletter contains links with additional information, where would that information be housed so everyone could access it – box?  Webpage? Tish suggested forming a faculty senate ad hoc committee to handle Communications. Michael will ask for volunteers at next Friday’s meeting.

Higher Education Summit on free speech and intellectual diversity. Michael was invited by President Ryan to attend this summit at UVA. It seemed to consist of the Presidents and Provosts of other Virginia colleges as well as some private groups. The big topic was Free Speech, especially at universities. What they find is that people think free speech is great as long as it’s their preferred speech not the other side’s. Should UVA make statements on world events. What does it say if you do make a statement versus don’t make a statement. What about meeting speech that we don’t find welcoming with more speech versus hatred and violence. The Daily Progress reached out to Michael, and he later had to ask them to publish his full statement. Free speech continues to be a topic for the faculty senate to address.

Motion to Adjourn: Tish Jennings
Seconded: Jeri Seidman
Motion Passes.
Meeting Adjourned.