Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes - February 23, 2021

Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes

Friday, February 23, 2021; 3:00 – 5:00pm
Zoom Virtual Meeting


Joel Hockensmith (chair), Hanadi Al-Samman, Rasheed Balogun, Ellen Bassett, Alan Beckenstein, Aaron Bloomfield, Philip Bourne, Maite Brandt-Pearce, Darryl Brown, Eli Carter, Donna Chen, Ming-Jer Chen, Sylvia Chong, John Comazzi, Stephen Culp, Jennifer Davis, Linda Duska, Maxim Engers, James Fitz-Gerald, Jay Fox, Gavin Garner, Peter Gray, Vanessa Gregg, Doug Grissom, Natasha Heller, Ira Herbst, Janet Herman, Bob Hirosky, Jay Hirsh, Tom Horton, Tish Jennings, Meg Keeley, Michael Kennedy, Jason Kerrigan, Bradley Kesser, Daniel Kinney, Susan Kirk, Adria LaViolette, Kevin Lehmann, Antonia LoLordo, Allen Lynch, Stephen Macko, Elizabeth Magill, Katya Makarova, Carol Manning, Kirk Martini, Kathryn Neeley, Peter Norton, Thomas Pajewski, Rob Patterson, James Ryanm, Jeri Seidman, Maria Sequeira-Lopez, Dan Spitzner, Mircea Stan, Nicole Thorne Jenkins, Sarah Stewart Ware, Ishan Williams, Brian Wright, Jeff Young


Rafael Alvarado, Jennifer Bair, Donald Brown, Cathy Campbell, John Casteen, Michael Citro, David Feith, Judy Fox, Leora Friedberg, Maggie Harden, Alena Herklotz, Lynn Mandeltort, Brett Marshall, Lorna Martens, John McNeil, Shizuka Modica, Christina Morell, Ryan Nelson, Christina Neuhaus, Wendy Novicoff, Christine Peterson, Nathaniel Ratcliff, Alexandra Rebhorn, Jeana Ripple, Laura Morgan Roberts, Mitch Rosen, Anne Rotich, Claudia Scholz, Allan Stam, Wynne Stuart, Judith Thomas

Administrative Support: Ashley Ayers; (Amanda Ludwig, closed captioner)

Meeting agenda:

  1. Convene and Call to Order - Chair Joel Hockensmith

  2. Approve minutes –

    1. *FS 01/29/2021

  3. Academic Affairs Committee – Cmte Chair Bloomfield; 3:05-3:15 pm

    1. B.A. in Computer Science from the College

      1. While the CS department is in the Engineering school, this degree is for College students; the existing BS CS is the CS degree for Engineering students. The BA CS passed the AAC unanimously and EXCO by general consent.

    2. Ph.D. in Data Science from the School of Data Science. The DS PhD passed the AAC with one dissenting vote and EXCO by general consent.

  4. Nominating Committee – Cmte Chair Bassett (This agenda item will occur prior to 3:15 pm or immediately succeeding the COACHE survey discussion)

  5. Executive Leadership Session: 3:15-3:45 pm

    1. Liz Magill, Provost

    2. Jim Ryan, President

  6. COACHE Survey

    1. Maïté Brandt-Pearce, Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs: 30 minute presentation

    2. Questions & Deliberations

    3. Path Forward Discussion

  7. Annual Senate Elections

    1. Nominations close Feb 23rd 5 pm/Candidate statements posted March 18 with oral March 25/Electronic vote March 25-29 (per EXCO)

    2. Please:

      1. Do send your nominations electronically to Ellen Bassett & the nominating committee.

      2. Do not put nominations in the “Chat” of the Zoom session.

      3. Do not wait until the end of the meeting because deliberative items 3, 5 & 6 will be given preference and time may be insufficient for this administrative item. The FS Floor is “virtual” for these nominations.

  8. Other business

  9. 5:00 pm – Adjourn

“*” denotes items to be approved by “General Consent”. Dissent of a single Faculty Senate member sends the item to an “on line” vote by the full FS.

Meeting Notes:

Quorum met; Ellen Bassett called the meeting to order at 3:08 PM (Joel Hockensmith experienced technical issues with sound).

January 29 Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes: approved by General Consent

Academic Affairs (Aaron Bloomfield)

There are two proposals.

  • The first program is a Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science.

  • Any questions about the first one? No questions.

  • Passed by General Consent

  • The second program is a Ph.D. in Data Science. School of Data Science had a Master of Data Science in place before the school was created. This is their first proposal since the school’s creation. Very few PhDs in data science at other universities. It is a very new field and makes comparisons more difficult.

  • Any questions?

  • Bradley Kesser: One dissenting vote in AAC? Any details about that dissenting vote?

  • Aaron Bloomfield: Not disclosing the dissenter because I want people to feel free to dissent without being pointed out. Some concern that this PhD was not created in as multi-disciplinary a form as it could have been created, that it doesn't really interact with the other departments and entities within the school as perhaps they could have.

  • Dan Spitzner: Our sense in Statistics is there's not enough interaction between Data Science and Statistics for it to be as collaborative as they claim. That this version is narrow and could be benefited by more interactions with their peer disciplines (Statistics, Computer Science and possibly others).

  • Jason Kerrigan: How many courses required for the master’s degree? How many more credits of course work would you need for the PhD?

  • Aaron Bloomfield: The PhD requires the master’s degree

  • Philip Bourne: 81 credits (combo of masters and PhD) some overlap. 24 additional credit hours needed beyond the master’s degree.

  • Susan Kirk: Is the new program detrimental to an existing program? What are your concerns? Is more collaboration something which would be beneficial? Is it detrimental in ways other than a lack of collaboration?

  • Dan Spitzner: Statistics and Data Science are separate disciplines. Students do not always see them as separate, in that way, it can be seen as a competing program. In that sense, this program could be perceived a competing program.

  • Research/course collaborations could be more interdisciplinary than is currently planned. Walls seem to exist between the pure disciplines.Philip Bourne: This is a relatively small program, 18 students. Encouraging other students to take the courses if they wish. Core comparisons between stats, computer science, mathematics. All endorsed moving the program forward. From the research perspective the program is certainly collaborative. Also collaborating with other institutions across the country.
  • Philip Bourne: This is a relatively small program, 18 students. Encouraging other students to take the courses if they wish. Core comparisons between stats, computer science, mathematics. All endorsed moving the program forward. From the research perspective the program is certainly collaborative. Also collaborating with other institutions across the country.
  • Joel Hockensmith: With no other questions, I will move to the vote (online) which will be open at 5 PM today and run for four days, it will close on Saturday at 5 PM. Passed by the AAC with one objection and passed EXCO without objection. I will report out the results this weekend.

Update from President Jim Ryan and Provost Liz Magill

  • Jim Ryan: Tighter restrictions enacted last Tuesday. The new restrictions are due to of unusually high numbers and very large positivity rate. The numbers today are encouraging, and our hope is to ease restrictions. We will revisit this no later than Friday.

  • Tensions are high among students. I encourage compassion – the students are struggling.

  • Legislative session: Public college/universities presidents across Virginia submitted a single unified budget: Budget request had three parts (funding for COVID expenses, funding for testing, increase in base budget of 2%): the House and Senate agreed to first and second categories but not the third. Instead of one-time funding, we will get 3 million in addition to what we normally get going forward. Less than what we requested.
    House and Senate converted what the governor proposed ($1500 bonus for all state employees) to a salary increase.

  • Combine the fact that the state did not grant all the funding and it has now mandated this salary increase, that puts more pressure on tuition, which is the big issue for the board meeting. We have gone back to the legislature to ask them to reconsider funding the third category. We will know more this Thursday when they report out from the conference.

  • Legislation:

    • Expanding financial aid eligibility to undocumented students residing in VA that meet certain other criteria to be considered in state. Any students admitted to UVA regardless of citizenship status. Some eligible for in-state tuition but UVA not allowed to provide financial aid unless state mandates permission. This bill allows for students who qualify for in-state status to receive aid.

    • Bill on Board transparency and accountability. Mandates information about how to contact board and appointment dates are made public. UVA already does these things. Recommend public transparency of virtual meetings.

    • Enslaved memorial program bill requires these universities to recognize/memorialize enslaved laborers. The memorial to enslaved laborers actually meets that requirement. Also requires universities to provide tangible benefit (scholarship or economic program) for individuals or specific communities with a demonstrated historic connection to slavery that will empower families to be lifted out of the cycle of poverty – need to take a look at that to figure out how to respond. Develop guidelines.

    • Ban the box bill: Would prevent asking colleges from applicants if they have a criminal record. Senate has proposed an amendment that would exempt law schools from this requirement because law schools have requirements related to bar admission that make this question relevant. Colleges cannot ask before application, but can before admission.

  • BOV:

    • Election of a new student and a new faculty member of the BOV. Joel Hockensmith is the faculty representative.

    • Finance Committee- Will cover tuition and fees, proposed increase ranges from 0-3.1%.

    • Buildings and Grounds- Hotel/Conference Center at Emmet/Ivy and Athletics complex, not on funding, just approving design.


    • Advancement: Report on Honor the Future campaign

    • Audit, Compliance, & Risk: Compliance around Safe Grounds

    • Full Board: Conversation on COVID and priorities into the spring and summer

    • Liz Magill: Academic and Student Life will have, if approved by the full senate, these two degrees.

    • Ramasubramanian will give update on research.

    • Kucenas and Cowen will discuss hybrid teaching at request of BOV.

  • Dan Spitzner’s question: School without walls in Data Science means in the Provost’s office that we have a dean who is aspiring to hire almost exclusively joint faculty with other disciplines, which is, as all of you know involved in faculty hiring, a pretty tall order to do.

  • Any questions?

    • Michael Kennedy: If tuition is raised the trickle-down effect to faculty, applications not as competitive? Impact on grants? Any thoughts?

    • Jim Ryan: Board is primarily focused on undergrad tuition. Board understands the short- and long-term consequences for not raising tuition. Balancing that reality against current climate of the pandemic.

    • Liz Magill: Consequence for grants. The Deans are thinking about this. Different departments also have different approaches. The Board possibly does not think about it the same way.

COACHE survey results (Maite Brandt-Pearce)

  • Survey held last spring.

  • The PowerPointpresentation is a draft; marked as confidential. Will be posting final version on a website. Trying to control distribution of preliminary documents.

  • Committee work: Committee selected – mix of knowledgeable faculty and staff.

  • COACHE is administered by Harvard Graduate School of Education, Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education; a survey of faculty satisfaction (across institutions; across time)

  • Analysis, Dissemination (transparent and report finding so faculty can understand each other’s perspective), Action Plan (address concerns and improve faculty satisfaction and retention)

  • UVA has participated in 2012, 2016, and 2020 (possibly to a degree in 2008 as well)

  • In 2020, 110 institutions participated. Not all R1 institutions.

  • Five peer institutions (Emory, UC Davis, UNC Chapel Hill, UT at Austin, Vanderbilt)

  • Cohort response rate was 44%, UVA response rate was 38%, which is same as peer response rate. Survey straddled start of pandemic; might have been reason for lower response rate.

  • What happened after 2016 survey: Investment in salaries (BOV commitment to 20th position in AAC), investment in faculty, investment in infrastructure (especially research infrastructure), investment in grad programs.

  • Overall satisfaction: How do you feel about the department as a place to work? How do you feel about the institution as a place to work?

  • Survey was administered February 13 through April 12, 2020. Analysis – no glaring differences when responses were analyzed before and after March 15. Differences occurred on very specific questions. Many questions were not impacted (like clarity around P&T).

  • Two best aspects of working at UVA and two worst aspects. Assesses what makes people happy to be here and what is irritating to people: important for retention.

  • Nine themes: nature of work, resources and support, cross-silo work and mentorship, tenure and promotion, institutional leadership, shared governance, department, appreciation and recognition, retention and negotiation.

  • Best: quality of colleagues, quality of undergrad students, support of colleagues, geographic location, academic freedom.

  • Worst: compensation, lack of diversity, too much service, lack of support of research/creative work, spousal/partner hiring program.

  • Over time: Best two qualities were the same in 2012 and 2016: quality of colleagues and quality of undergraduate students.

  • Worst two have somewhat changed. Compensation always worst. Second worst has changed over time.

  • Can look at strengths, middle of the road areas, and weaknesses – highlighted on a graph that Maite reviewed.

  • Underrepresented faculty perception of strengths and weaknesses: health and retirement benefits are more of a weakness, tenure policies and expectations clarity are weakness, as are department collegiality and engagement.

  • Produced a word cloud to highlight words/phrases that were dominant in particular areas/on faculty minds.

  • Improved slightly overall in 2020. Top: nature of work: teaching. Has been consistent over time. Improvement in weaknesses. School/college leadership: has improved. Faculty leadership has decreased.

  • How is info going to be disseminated? Maite will meet with each school’s leadership so they can see the data on their own school. Can highlight areas of strength and weakness.

  • SOM did not participate

  • Numbers too small in SDS and SCPS

  • Institutional-level plan to disseminate – put data on a website (behind NetBadge)

  • Qualitative answers will not be available on website.

  • We want feedback from faculty to improve on perceived weaknesses. Will have discussion sessions with faculty on mentoring, clarity around tenure process, department climate leadership, childcare and dual career support, incentivizing and reward interdisciplinary work, assessing and valuating faculty service.

  • How to move forward? Comparing compensation to peers, build on faculty diversity efforts, address service works, support research collaboration, evaluation of the dual-career program and resources. Look at benefits to make sure they align with faculty needs. Mentoring – anything to help university-wide.

COACHE Questions?

  • Tish Jennings: What does “faculty leadership” refer to?

    • Brandt-Pearce: Departments, dean-level, administration-level. This term is referring to the faculty senate level. Faculty-run leadership groups.

  • Susan Kirk: Some institutions are private/some are public. All five peers also have medical schools. How many other SOM faculty were excluded?


    • Maite: I can ask for you. Susan Pollart and Maite had a conversation about StandPoint survey. It is the medical equivalent of the COACHE. Because it includes more questions about clinical work and transparency of finances. Questions that SOM faculty are more interested in.

  • Joel Hockensmith: Might give us leverage, if we know if other schools with medical schools participate in the COACHE survey.

    • Maite Brandt-Pearce: We can get with leadership in SOM to understand why SOM does the separate StandPoint survey. Open to having an institutional response to SOM StandPoint survey. Don’t want to exclude faculty in SOM.

  • Three faculty senate members are COACHE committee members and will be invited to the next EXCO to give their input on the data.

  • Ellen Bassett: When will the data be up and available for school by school analysis?

    • Maite Brandt-Pearce: The data is already behind NetBadge. Waiting for the website to be constructed because it puts the data in context. Narrated version of slide deck (accessible); tables of data; dashboard. Want to give people some context about the data. In about one week, should be available. BOV presented before it is out there too publicly.

  • Hanadi Al-Samman: How to improve collegiality across departments and schools?

    • Maite Brandt-Pearce: Areas where we can improve in transparency. More flexibility in assigning service. Survey gives good ideas for moving forward. We do not want to give one solution; might be different, depending on the school. We want to hear faculty input and from the chairs and the people who feel there is a problem.

  • Joel Hockensmith: Any recommendations about the slides or any other questions? The slide makes sense with the discussion around it. Accessibility – narrative. When would you like feedback on the slides?

    • Maite Brandt-Pearce: by Monday.

  • Ellen Bassett: Two faculty grievances in last year. Related to P&T, but also to faculty governance. Participate in creating policy. Variety across the schools for P&T. Great opportunity.

    • Maite Brandt-Pearce: Data shows that some schools may have a weakness in respect to this. Will be reaching out to relevant deans about this. New strategy: policies that are actively seeking faculty feedback – posted online so faculty can directly comment on the policy.

  • Rob Patterson: What do you mean, feedback on the slides?

    • Maite Brandt-Pearce: When you look at the slides, especially the last few ones, if there are additional topics for listening sessions, let me know. Look at the data and if there are concerns, raise them. Not expecting a lot of feedback, do not feel like you must respond. But wants to give a change for faculty feedback. Opportunity for a group of people to look at slides and get their perspectives.

  • Katya Makarova: Following summer 2017 (“Summer of Hate”), UVA had a climate survey in which faculty actively participated. Never received the results of the survey – was disappointing. Pertinent information around diversity – is that information relevant around the challenges of diversity? Is the data useful or is it now outdated?

    • Maite Brandt-Pearce: I was not involved in that survey; vice provost Archie Holmes administered, now at UT system. Faculty, staff, and students participated, but was mostly staff. Not comparative, makes it difficult to draw conclusions. There was also a switch in provosts in the middle of the survey. I can follow up. I do not know what happened to it. Concerns about how it was administered. We could learn from looking at those survey results.

Nominating Committee (Joel Hockensmith):

  • The bylaws state that we need to have two nominees for each position. There is only one nominee for parliamentarian.

  • Ellen Bassett: Motion: we would like to have this position to be run unopposed. I motion that for the Parliamentarian position that the Faculty Senate suspend the rule that requires “two nominees for each other position established by the Faculty Senate.

  • Joel Hockensmith: I am introducing the concept that when we have a rule, we don’t always have to follow it, if we have a motion to suspend the rule.

  • Tish Jennings: Seconded the motion.

  • Kevin Lehmann: Suspended it this one time? Or indefinitely?

  • Joel Hockensmith: Only suspend one time. It is an action that is restricted to a single event. No other comments? Motion brought to the floor: Does anyone object? Motion is to suspend the rule on a one-time basis to requiring two nominees for parliamentarian. No objections. Approved by General Consent.

  • Joel Hockensmith: What is the “floor” of a virtual meeting. Communication has changed since Robert’s rules were created.

Peter Norton: Jeff Young, Chair Elect; Bradley Kesser for at-large on Executive Council, Hanadi Al-Samman for at-large on Executive Council

Joel Hockensmith: Cannot have more than two years of chairs from the same school. We must spread them around. Susan Kirk is chair elect; Joel is this year’s chair. So that would be a third year of SOM chair-elect. If they do not violate the rules, they will come to the floor.

  • To the above: Following the meeting, Joel emailed the FS on Wednesday 2/24 to note that the bylaws actually restrict more than 3 chairs from one school in a row. Jeff Young was ultimately included as a Chair-Elect candidate on the Collab-based voting.

Joel Hockensmith: Other business from the floor? None.

Chair Hockensmith declared meeting adjourned at 4:40 pm.