shorttop.jpg (1907 bytes)

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Faculty Council Minutes

November 5, 1998 Signal Mountain Room
University Center
Elected Members Present: Boris Belinskiy, Marlene Bradshaw, Roland Carter, Valerie Copeland-Rutledge, Joe Dumas, Fritz Efaw, Gene Ezell, Phil Giffin, Diane Halstead, Jim Hiestand, Lenny Krzycki, Deborah McAllister, Eileen Meagher, Jonathan Mies, Cliff Parten, Marea Rankin, Terri Salupo, Lauren Sewell, Ann Stapleton, Vicki Steinberg, Felicia Sturzer, John Trimpey, Margaret Trimpey, Rick Turpin, Bruce Wallace, Mike Whittle
Elected Members Absent: Jim Avery, Tom Bibler, Mike Biderman, Pedro Campa, Marsha Scheidt, Mac Smotherman, Randy Whitson
Ex-Officio Members Present: Bill Berry, Sheila Delacroix, Jane Harbaugh, Richard MacDougall
Among the Guests Present: Richard Brown, Howard Finch, Dick Gruetzemacher, Lanny Janeksela, Mac McNeely, Greg O’Dea, Tim Summerlin, Mary Tanner, Barbara Wofford

Important Actions and Announcements

*********************************************************************************

*Curriculum Committee proposals are approved 24-0-0.

*Provost Berry announces salary adjustments for faculty.

*Dean Tanner reports on the approval of the O.D. McKee Chair of Excellence and the Educational Specialists Degree.

*Chief McNeely reports on campus crime statistics.

*Dr. Wofford discusses minority hiring on campus

**************************************************************************

Call to Order

President Verbie Prevost called the meeting to order at 3:05 p.m.

Approval of the Minutes of October 15, 1998

The minutes were approved as distributed.

Committee Reports

Executive Committee:

President Prevost, a member of the UT Presidential Search Advisory Committee, distributed a draft list of desirable qualifications for the new UT president compiled by the committee at a recent meeting. She encouraged comments and input from Council members. She distributed a second handout with excerpts from an address by Professor Mark Miller, President of the UTK Faculty Senate, to the recent meeting of the Board of Trustees. His remarks concerned the status of performance review implementation at UTK. Based on Miller’s report and reports from other campuses, President Prevost said UTC seems to have more faculty involvement in setting up the implementation process than other campuses.

Counselors to the President:

President Prevost, Professor Howard Finch, and Professor Bill Gurley, UTC’s Counselors to the UT President, met recently in Knoxville with other campus representatives. One topic discussed with UT officials was TIAA-CREF cashability. At the request of the Faculty Council Executive Committee, Professor Finch agreed to discuss issues related to cashability.

Professor Finch said he would not argue for or against cashability but would offer some information and observations that Council might find useful as it wrestles with this issue. When he was on Faculty Council several years ago, cashability generated many questions, and many faculty felt strongly they should be able to take a lump sum distribution when they retired, an option the State of Tennessee does not currently offer. Professors Martha Butterfield and Tom Payne were working actively on this problem as recently as last spring.

Employees in higher education in the State of Tennessee are under a defined contribution plan which means the state contributes on their behalf on a regular basis to a fund they have chosen from the options available. The amount accumulated by the retirement date is a function of how well the investments have performed during the years of contribution. Most other state employees are under a defined benefit plan wherein the state is obligated to make a set payout to the employee at retirement based on predetermined criteria. Most states average salaries for the last three years of employment or the highest three years of earnings during state employment. In a defined benefit plan, the obligation is on the state to make the payments regardless of how well the money has performed in the investments and regardless of whether the money is even there.

At the Counselors meeting, Professor Finch said UT Vice President Homer Fisher discussed the differences in the state retirement plans. The Tennessee State Employees Plan, the retirement plan used by state employees other than those in higher education, is a defined benefit plan. According to Fisher, that plan is well funded and operates in an actuarially sound fashion in contrast to some state plans. That plan does not have a cashability option, and participants may not take a lump sum distribution when they retire; they must take an annuitized payout. Fisher said some state legislators are adamantly opposed to TIAA-CREF cashability because they feel employees in the other plan would want a cashout option as well. In a defined benefit plan, if a lot of people elect to cashout, the fund shrinks and may become less viable; but the state is still obligated to make payments to the remaining participants. UT officials said significant changes would have to take place in the state legislature before higher education employees would get the cashability option. President Prevost said the Faculty Senate at UT-Memphis has passed a resolution supporting cashability.

While noting he was not arguing for or against cashability, Provost Bill Berry said discussions he has heard at professional meetings and in other states begin with the observation that retirement plans are not investment plans. Cashability starts making a retirement plan an investment plan. The argument continues that the state’s contribution should not be siphoned off into investments since it is a protective mechanism and rather than an investment. Those people who cash out and use the money unwisely then become wards of the state. Provost Berry said these arguments enliven the cashability discussion whether you agree with them or not.

Curriculum Committee:

Curriculum Committee Chair John Trimpey presented proposals and information items originating in History, Communication, University Honors, and Physics for Council approval. Professor Jim Hiestand asked if the History proposal had been approved by the General Education Committee. Professor Trimpey said it had. Professor Hiestand questioned the lack of credit for the UHON proposal. He said it was taking something from the student and not giving them any reward; he added he didn’t like it when Engineering did that either. Professor Trimpey said Honors was trying to keep the students more involved in the program but also remain in conformity with the definition of what the Honors Program asks of students. Professor Greg O’Dea said the credit/no credit issue had been discussed at length, and they elected to recommend no credit. The courses meet very few times relative to credit courses, one hour every other week. These meetings have already been occurring on an informal basis. Awarding no credit is also less of a bookkeeping problem as faculty already have full teaching loads. The proposals were approved 24-0-0.

Committee on Committees:

In the absence of Professor Tom Bibler, President Prevost asked Council to approve three students being recommended by Dean Richard MacDougall for openings on the Student Conduct Board. Students Michael Magnacca, Bhavana Desai, and Mason Milburn were approved by a unanimous vote.

Administrative Reports

Provost’s Report:

Provost Berry noted the support for several UTC projects at the recent UT Board of Trustees meeting. In addition to a Chair of Excellence, the Board endorsed several building and renovation projects. Most notably, the Engineering, Computer Science, and Mathematics building, a $28 million project, was ranked no. 1 among all building projects. On the capital maintenance list, a $1.1 million renovation project for Hunter Hall was ranked no. 1. Although projects involving housing and the student center are funded from auxiliary monies, the Board does approve them. The Board endorsed a $15 million expansion of the Student Center and a $13.7 million outlay for new housing. Hunter Hall, the Student Center, and Housing are all areas where UTC can expect to see money in the next fiscal year.

Several UTC projects were endorsed for the 2000-2001 year including $22.5 million for an expansion of the library and $12 million for a new Chemistry building. One of the newspapers misreported the latter figure as $4 million. The library was ranked 4th on the list while the Chemistry building was ranked 9th. Both have moved up considerably on the list of priorities.

Provost Berry yielded the floor to Dean Mary Tanner for a report on the approval of the O.D. McKee Chair of Excellence in Dyslexic Research and Exceptional Instruction, the first Chair of Excellence for the College of Education and Applied Professional Studies. Dean Tanner said she was pleased UT President Joe Johnson recommended this proposal to the Board from the 10 submitted. She said the McKee family has been a long-time friend of UTC and particularly the College Access Program. O.D. McKee had a profound learning disability that kept him from learning to read and write until he was a teenager, a story associated with his business success. McKee’s family has continued to be very interested in learning disabilities and learning differences, and the gift grew out of that interest.

She said the chairholder would be expected to replicate the College Access Program in other environments and to help UTC communicate with the K-12 community, the medical community, and the larger community of parents. Several families in the community have expressed an interest in seeing a larger center established to focus on learning disabilities.

Dean Tanner said the Board also approved UTC’s first degree beyond the Master’s degree—an educational specialists degree which will focus on leadership in instructional technology. Specialists degrees are generally regarded as terminal degrees for K-12 educators. An innovative degree designed to provide students with an understanding of what instructional technology will mean for the shaping and assessing of instruction, it will also cover how to budget for technology, how to manage it, and how to bring others along in using it. Even though the program was just approved by THEC on July 31, the college was able to draw on a backlog of interest in the program and admit and start a class on October 1. In attempting to practice what they preach, the course work will be delivered in part on the web and through distance education. Although the first class is from the public schools, a bigger challenge awaits as applications arrive from people in business training.

Dean Tanner yielded to Provost Berry who turned to the topic of salaries. Provost Berry said $200,000 would be distributed to faculty this term in the form of merit and equity adjustments. The $100,000 he discussed at the beginning of the semester has been supplemented by another $100,000 of funds identified by the Chancellor. Since the UT System has stipulated that all campuses find some way to recognize and reward merit, some of the monies will go for merit purposes.

He said an institution’s needs vary over time and that merit, equity, or across-the-board adjustments can be more or less appropriate at times, but he feels equity is the most important value for this campus right now. In the meetings with the individual colleges, sentiments seemed to run in that direction on the part of some faculty. Discussions in the Council of Deans have reinforced equity as the most pressing need for the campus at this time, so the greater portion of the $200,000 will go for equity. The details of the distribution will be shared with the campus via raven, so faculty can agree or disagree based on accurate information.

On the topic of merit adjustments, Provost Berry said the seven faculty members who earned exceptional merit ratings for the last three years will have $1,000 added to their base salary. The 38 faculty members who earned exceptional merit for two of the last three years will have $500 added to their base salary. He and the Council of Deans wanted to recognize faculty who had received exceptional merit in one of the last three years but found no meaningful way to do so and still address equity issues in a significant way. Cost for merit recognition: $26,000.

On the topic of equity, Provost Berry said the university has 14 faculty who hold the appropriate terminal degree and who are appointed in tenure track positions whose salaries are under $34,000. Those 14 salaries will be adjusted to $34,000. Cost for adjustments: $21,000. In addition, five professional library faculty who earn less than $34,000 will have their salaries adjusted to that level. Cost for adjustments: just under $9,500.

Provost Berry said the remaining $143,000 would be used for additional equity adjustments. The campus has had an equity mechanism that attempts to flag potential inequities and give deans and departments heads a chance to review those cases. The $143,000 will be divided among faculty flagged by that mechanism. Based on a series of discussions with the Council of Deans, the decision was made to target faculty who had the grossest inequities. After looking at faculty who had an inequity that was at least one standard deviation off the UTC average, a decision was made to focus on faculty who were -.75 of a standard deviation or ’s of a standard deviation off the university average. Although the adjustments will be fairly substantial for the 59 faculty in this category, he said it doesn’t mean they will necessarily be adjusted to where they should be.

When the salaries of the 59 faculty are adjusted, a handful of these faculty will move to a position better than a few faculty who weren’t at -.75 of a standard deviation. Provost Berry is going to find the money to supplement the salaries of those passed faculty, so UTC will not create a new class of worse off faculty. He said the eight people who would be passed by those adjusted because of -.75 z scores would receive fairly modest raises. He lamented the small pool of money and wished for more money for merit, equity, and staff increases. He noted the 2% raise due in January for faculty and staff.

Salaries will continue to be a priority of the Provost’s and Chancellor’s Offices. Provost Berry said equity is an ongoing commitment that the university will have to consider on a regular basis. He and the Council of Deans are already in the process of identifying at least $50,000 to begin a pool for the next round of equity adjustments in fall 1999. Other monies will be identified before then to supplement the $50,000.

Professor Sturzer asked if the 2% raises in January would be across the board. Provost Berry said his office had not yet received guidelines for the expenditures, but the campus would be notified as soon as he had that information. He added that the equity and merit raises he discussed would be retroactive to September 1 and that he expects faculty to be notified before Christmas about those adjustments. Professor Margaret Trimpey asked if the faculty receiving the equity and merit raises knew who they were. Berry said the faculty didn’t know and he didn’t know either. He has steered clear of letting people give him names and is working through the system to assure as fair and objective a process as possible.

Professor Hiestand asked if the computation of standards deviations was based on all faculty or computed within colleges. Dr. Dick Gruetzemacher said his office looked at each individual salary as a percent of the national average for their rank and discipline according to the national CUPA study of faculty salaries. His office has used this method for the last four years to identify faculty whose salaries are below the norm or, in some cases, considerably below the norm. The percent of the national average was the criteria used to look at faculty whose salaries were most inequitable. He calculated a university mean percent of the national average and took a standard deviation of that distribution of percentages. From that figure he subtracted the mean from each individual salary and then divided by the standard deviation to get a z score or a number of standard deviation units. Those calculations resulted in a list of individuals whose negative z scores were greater than -.75 or who had salaries that were ’s of the standard deviation below the norm, the norm being the percent of the average mean percent of national average across the university, or who were identified as being proportionately worse off with regard to salaries. The resulting list represented 25% of all people who had a negative z score whose percent of the national average was less than 100. He expects the $143,000 to be allocated proportionately based on the difference between each individual’s salary and the national average. This difference between the national average for each individual’s rank and discipline and their actual salary is the inequity for each individual faculty member. For faculty who were ’s of a standard deviation or more below the mean, Dr. Gruetzemacher’s office took the $143,000 and allocated it proportionately based on the size of the inequity.

Professor Diane Halstead asked what percent of faculty were below CUPA regardless of the amount. Dr. Gruetzemacher said about 59% were below the mean for their rank and discipline. Berry said the deans and department heads will be able to review the adjustments and, assuming justification, will be able to deny an increase to substandard performers. He has told deans and department chairs equity will not be equated with merit. A dean or department chair cannot take part of the equity adjustment of Professor X and award the amount to someone deemed more meritorious.

Professor Deborah McAllister asked how faculty receiving exceptional merit had been recognized the last three years. Provost Berry said exceptional merit had not been compensated the last three years. Professor McAllister asked how faculty would be notified about increases and adjustments. In an evangelistic style, Provost Berry said letters would go out to the faculty receiving adjustments. "When I get to send good news, I’m going to send it," he said.

Since equity will continue to be a concern of the campus, Provost Berry invited Faculty Council to review the mechanism described by Dr. Gruetzemacher. Changes to provide a more solid objective base would be welcome. While no mechanism is perfect for all time, he wants a mechanism that will engender some measure of trust at this time.

Crime Statistics:

Chief of Public Safety Mac McNeely thanked Council for the opportunity to discuss crime statistics and correct some misconceptions arising from recent newspaper reports. He noted his 25 years of law enforcement experience, much of it in the military. He spent five years at UTC as an instructor in the Military Science Department and assumed his current position when he retired from the Army.

Chief McNeely said several events led to the October 1 audit by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI). In August the mission of the campus police force was refocused to concentrate on public safety. Weapons were taken away from some officers, and more emphasis was given to patrolling the campus interior on foot. While these steps were taken to improve crime prevention on campus, the changes created a swirl of controversy. Upset by the changes, several current and former employees reviewed the 1997 incident reports and contacted Daniel Carter, vice-president of Security on Campus Inc. They alleged to Mr. Carter that Chief McNeely was hiding or misreporting crimes.

Mr. Carter visited UTC and talked with the employees but did not talk to Chief McNeely. Mr. Carter subsequently filed a report with the TBI which led TBI Director Wallace to order an audit. UTC and eleven other four-year colleges in the state had already been scheduled for an audit in January 1999.

Chief McNeely currently reports crime under the Tennessee Incident Based Reporting System (TIBRS), an instrument he has been using since December 1996. While UTC was one of the first universities certified to report under TIBRs, the city of Chattanooga still does not use the system. Chief McNeely reviewed and classified over 1300 reports under TIBRS in 1997 alone.

The TBI checked the reports forwarded by Mr. Carter and found some errors which Chief McNeely subsequently corrected. As a part of the audit, the TBI looked at the reporting of January-May 1998 crimes and indicated some crimes had been reported under the wrong category. Chief McNeely cited two examples. In the past, if a theft occurred from a student’s dorm room or a faculty office, he would have reported it as a theft from a building. The TBI told him the correct classification should be burglary. In addition, he had not been reporting harassing phone calls in any category since he didn’t know they were crimes. The TBI said, if the receiver of a phone call feels threatened by the call in any way, it should be reported it as assault through intimidation. Chief McNeely reclassified 15 of those reports. In the past some reports were classified as miscellaneous, usually an incident like an open door or a stuck elevator. The TBI recommended those incidents be classified in a specific category. Eventually 34 incident reports were reclassified.

Chief McNeely believes all 1998 crimes have now been categorized to the satisfaction of the TBI but indicated campus crime statistics will go up based on the TBI’s interpretation of TIBRs. In the military and in his other positions, he was trained to report the highest crime that occurred with the crimes beneath that becoming lesser included offenses. The TBI’s interpretation of TIBRS changes that, he said. He cited the example of a burglary in a student’s room in which a wallet and credit cards are taken. In the past, the incident would have been reported as a theft from a building but would now be classified as a burglary. If the thief subsequently used the student’s credit card, that fraudulent use would be reported as a separate crime. He said crime statistics would increase as one crime becomes two or more under these reporting procedures.

Chief McNeely has looked at the statistics of the 11 universities scheduled to be audited in January and believes they have been reporting crimes much as he has been doing and that their statistics will increase as well. The TBI will begin offering classes soon to reduce the reporting inconsistencies.

President Prevost asked if a crime could be removed from the report if it was found not to have occurred. Chief McNeely said it could be. Professor Hiestand asked Chief McNeely if he was satisfied there was no deliberate attempt to misclassify. Chief McNeely said he was responsible for classifying the reports and had never intentionally covered up or hidden anything. He said he has tried to report under the guidelines as he understood them.

Professor Sturzer asked if there had been an increase in crime on campus. Chief McNeely said he would need to review the statistics again but felt UTC was about where it was last year. Car break-ins might be up a little bit. On Tuesday four cars were broken into in one lot. On Monday a police officer had been on surveillance in the same lot and nothing happened. He mentioned several recent thefts from freshmen studying in the library. With irony, he noted these students had attended Freshmen Seminar classes he taught on crime prevention. He feels more crime prevention education is needed. Citing a possible rise in the crime statistics on other campuses, Provost Berry asked if the TBI might publicize the changes in classification. Chief McNeely hoped they would and closed by saying the UTC campus was a safe environment whose main problem would continue to be theft of property.

Associate Vice Chancellor Richard Brown discussed the implementation of the card access system. He hopes to migrate every building to card access after 5 p.m., but implementation will occur in phases due to financing.

Trends in Minority Hiring:

Dr. Barbara Wofford reported 43 new faculty were hired for the 1998-99 school year. Of those 43, 25 were female and 18 were male, including one black male. The lone black male was hired on a one-year appointment as an instructor in EHLS.

According to figures from Dr. Gruetzemacher’s office, UTC has 328 full-time faculty members of whom 19 or 5.59% are minority. The desegregation goal is 4.3%. Professor Carter asked if the 19 included Africans and African-Americans. Dr. Wofford said desegregation guidelines call for both to be included. She listed the minority faculty on campus. In response to a question from Professor Cliff Parten, Dr. Wofford said her office does not classify faculty as minorities if they don’t classify themselves that way.

She discussed two programs funded by monies from the stipulation settlement that are available to minority faculty. Black Faculty and Administrative Recruitment monies can be used to supplement the salaries of minority hires or to encourage the retention of current faculty. These funds can also be used to cover the moving expenses of minority hires. Black Faculty Development monies can be used to support faculty who may want to return to school to obtain a terminal degree or who may want to prepare themselves for a higher position.

President Prevost asked if there were any minority department heads. Dr. Wofford said there was one. Professor Carter said he raised the issue at the last meeting of Faculty Council because of his concern that only one of the 43 new faculty was a minority. Professor John Trimpey asked if the 4.3% goal was increasing, decreasing, or static. Dr. Wofford said it had changed a little bit over time. Professor Trimpey asked if the 5.79% had changed, showing an increase or decrease. Wofford said there had been some change but not much.

President Prevost asked if there were 328 full-time faculty. Provost Berry said there were 255 full-time instructional faculty. Dr. Gruetzemacher said the 328 included deans, librarians, and a few others not included in the 255. Professor Sheila Delacroix asked who set the 4.3% goal. Dr. Wofford said it was set originally as part of the stipulation of settlement. Associate Provost Jane Harbaugh and Dr. Gruetzemacher discussed the study on which it was based. Provost Berry said in some states the targets derived from the percent of the state’s population that was minority. If the percent of Tennessee’s minority population fell, then the target would fall correspondingly.

Announcements

Convocation Committee Chair Valerie Copeland-Rutledge announced a survey is being circulated to faculty seeking feedback on convocation. Comments and suggestions will also be solicited via raven. Her committee is collecting information so they can make recommendations about future convocations.

Returning to the topic of minority hiring, Professor Carter asked what encouragement was being given to deans and others regarding minority hiring. What guidelines exist? Is there a plan? Provost Berry said he is encouraging deans who are in turn encouraging department chairs to be aggressive in building pools of candidates. He has instructed them to look very seriously at any minority candidates who meet the requirements for the position. While his personal attention might not constitute a plan, he said, his attention was attentive. President Prevost suggested a committee might look at the issue and make some recommendations.

Professor Terri Salupo asked how resumes revealed the minority status of an individual. Wofford said she would have that information if they returned their affirmative action cards. Professor Carter said the issue needed an aggressive approach. He said everyone in the room attends conferences with black or minority sections. Faculty, regardless of their own color, can network with these groups, he said.

Provost Berry said he had been discussing with the Council of Deans the idea of calling on the present minority faculty to help recruit and identify potential candidates. He invited Professor Carter and anyone else interested in the issue to talk with him after the meeting. Dean Tim Summerlin mentioned several books on minority hiring he had found helpful

President Prevost congratulated Coach Bill Gautier and the UTC men’s and women’s cross country teams on winning the Southern Conference championships recently.

Adjournment

President Prevost adjourned the meeting at 4:30 p.m.

 Respectfully submitted,

 Kathy Breeden

Faculty Council Secretary

top.gif (189 bytes)