2015-2016 Summary of Activity
The Faculty Council session begins September 1. It meets monthly September through May, and as needed. The minutes of Faculty Council meetings are posted, upon approval by the Faculty Council.
Faculty Assembly convenes twice a year. The Fall Assembly was held on November 4, 2015. The Spring Assembly was held on March 23, 2016. The meetings are recorded and archived on the website.
Faculty Council Officers 2015-2016
Associate Professor of Psychiatry
Graduate Medical Sciences Director, Mental Health & Behavioral Sciences Program
School of Medicine
J. Robb Dixon
Associate Professor of Operations and Technology Management
Questrom School of Business
Professor of Operations and Technology Management
Questrom School of Business
Discussions and Outcomes
On May 4, 2016, Chair Brady reported that the Task Force on Faculty Diversity has submitted its recommendations to the University Provost. Vice Chair Dixon reported that the Council Officers sent memos to the President and Provost to reiterate the Council’s concerns about academic support for international students and review and promotion for non tenure-track faculty. The Nominating Committee presented candidates for open committee chair seats and called for nominations from the floor. Vice President of Enrollment and Student Affairs Laurie Pohl gave a report about undergraduate enrollment, financial aid, and efforts to improve recruitment and retention of under-represented students.
On April 6, 2016, Dr. Shiela Kibbe, Chair of the Awards Committee, presented the recommendations for the 2016 John S. Perkins Award for Distinguished Service. The Council endorsed the committee’s recommendations unanimously. The Council discussed the unionization of full-time lecturers. Dr. David Lyons, a retired full-time faculty member of the School of Law and former member of Faculty Council, attended the meeting to talk with the Council about the concerns and efforts of part-time adjunct faculty and their ongoing effort to form a union.
On March 16, 2016, Dr. Bruce Schulman, Co-chair of the Task Force on General Education, presented the task force’s final recommendations. Chair Stephen Brady and Dr. Gene Jarrett presented the preliminary recommendations of the Task Force on Faculty Diversity.
On February 3, 2016, the Council devoted the agenda to academic support for international students. Associate Provost for Graduate Affairs Timothy Barbari, Associate Provost and Dean of Students Kenneth Elmore, Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs Elizabeth Loizeaux, and Vice President and Associate Provost for Global Programs Willis Wang attended the meeting.
On January 20, 2016, University Provost Jean Morrison attended the meeting to discuss the questions left over from the November meeting. There were discussions about the final exam schedule, faculty residency on campus, review and promotion for non tenure-track faculty, course evaluations, academic support for international students, and grade inflation.
On December 2, 2015, the Council heard reports/updates from the Academic Freedom Committee, Credentials and By-laws Committee, Media and Communication Committee, the Non Tenure-track Working Group, the Research Committee and the Task Force on Faculty Diversity. Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs Elizabeth Loizeaux, University Registrar Jeffrey von Munkwitz-Smith, and Associate Registrar Liza Burke met with the Council to discuss the course schedule matrix on the Charles River Campus.
On November 11, 2015, Chair Brady reported that the Task Force on Faculty Diversity will attend school/college faculty meetings in the coming weeks and asked Council members to encourage colleagues to attend. University Provost Jean Morrison met with the Council to discuss several topics focused on the Task Force on General Education. They also discussed support for international students, trigger warnings, the course credit hour policy, and professional development for non-tenure track faculty. There was not enough time to discuss all of the Council’s questions, and the Provost agreed to attend another meeting.
On October 23, 2015, Chair Brady reported that the Executive Committee met with the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs, the University Registrar and the Associate Registrar to discuss the plans to revise the course schedule on the Charles River Campus. As this plan will impact all CRC faculty, Chair Brady has invited them to attend the December Council meeting. The Council discussed academic freedom concerns in the classroom with respect to trigger warnings. Chair Brady said he will charge the Faculty Council Academic Freedom Committee to study this further and report to the Council. Associate Provost of Undergraduate Affairs Elizabeth Loizeaux, Dr. Douglas Kriner, Dr. Michael Salinger, Dr. Michael Tulips, and Dr. Bruce Schulman gave an update about the Task Force on General Education, the final report is forthcoming.
On September 30, 2015, Chair Brady outlined the structure and charge of the Task Force on Faculty Diversity. Vice Chair J. Robb Dixon updated the Council about the Advisory Committee on Socially Responsible Investing and the current discussion about divestment from fossil fuel industries. President Robert Brown joined the meeting and gave a report about the capital campaign, undergraduate admissions, financial aid, capital projects, and the Task Force on General Education. Council members raised their concerns about support for international students, public safety.
On September 2, 2015, Chair Brady reported that Provost Morrison has appointed him and Dr. Gene Jarrett, Associate Dean of Humanities of the College of Arts and Sciences, as co-chairs of the Task Force on Faculty Diversity. Chair Brady met with the President and Provost over the summer. President Brown sent a letter to all University employees to announce the changes to health insurance on January 1, 2016. The Council sent two memos to the President and Provost last spring: a request for a review of promotion procedures for non tenure-track faculty and a request for a University-wide review of teaching evaluations. Chair Brady reported that he received positive feedback from both memos and intends to follow-up on these issue with the Administration this fall.