General Faculty Organization

General Faculty Organization: 09/23/2008

 General Faculty Organization Meeting

September 23, 2008 1:00 pm, UW2 005

Chair:  Dan Jaffe

Present:  Tom Bellamy, Arnie Berger, Andreas Brochhaus, Bruce Burgett, Paul Collins, Diane Gillespie, Michael Goldberg, Susan Harewood, Cinnamon Hillyard, Steve Holland, Chuck Jackels, Pamela Joseph, Bruce Kochis, Kevin Laverty, Sarah Leadley, Pete Nye, Marc Servetnick, Tony Smith, Mike Stiber, Kelvin Sung, Jane Van Galen, Alan Wood and Carol Zander.

Welcome to the 2008-2009 Academic Year from the General Faculty Organization!


            Dan welcomed faculty to the new academic year and began the meeting with a brief overview of the GFO and the role of shared governance at UWB.  The EC and Vice Chancellor Jeffords worked closely together last year and built a communication structure for decision making that helped move many important issues forward.  The VCAA's office, in cooperation with the GFO and the GSO (General Staff Organization) developed a plan for growth and development at UWB, the 21st Century Campus Initiative. 

While we have found a good partner at the VC level, it must be remembered that the GFO is separate from the administration and the faculty have a key role to play in the oversight and management of the institution.  A University is not a business, our goals must align with our commitment to education.  The GFO, per the bylaws will meet once each quarter to move these goals forward.  For the coming year, the GFO has a number of important issues on its agenda. This includes the usual items, like approvals of courses and new degrees, but also some key items that we feel are essential to move the campus forward. These include:

Development of new STEM unit

Over the past two years, campus planning for STEM has taken place in a variety of venues.  Last year the EC supported the development of a new unit to support STEM majors at UWB.  The new unit was initiated by the Chancellor and approved by the state HEC board.  A transition team headed by Warren Buck is beginning to develop the initial guidelines for the new unit.  There are RCEP questions that need to be addressed about program faculty that may wish to move their lines into the new unit.  How will this be done?  RCEP will provide the framework for creation of this new unit.

Review of CUSP and FOCUS

            The original CUSP Charter, developed with the directive to bring freshmen to UWB called for a review in 3 years.  A joint review by the VCAA and the GFO will take place during the coming academic year. 

Campus space and new UWB3 building

            Dan asked faculty to review the UWB Facilities Roadmap compiled by Marilyn Cox, Vice Chancellor for Administration and Planning.  This graph shows the projected enrollment at UWB through 2020.  Our facilities are presently designed for 1800 FTE and we are essentially at capacity now.  This creates a very real and serious space challenge in the near future, with continued expectations on UWB to grow.  In addition, new STEM majors will need new labs and other facilities.  Currently, the UWB3 building is not slated for design funding until 2011-2013 and construction funding until 2013-2015.  If the state continues with this plan, we will likely have severe space constraints over the next 7 years.  It is possible that UWB3 could be moved up by 2 years, however to do this, we will have to  make a strong case concerning the need for this space at UWB.  We should work thru the UW administration and the legislature to make the strongest case possible to push the design and construction funding forward by 2 years.  The legislature has asked the campus to grow and meet the needs of the region to increase enrollment and develop STEM.  We need to make the case that it is critical to have the facilities to support our student's academic progress and careers now and in the future.  It is essential that our students can meet their needs at UWB to continue studies in science that can lead to careers in health sciences and other programs that are in demand.  We have doubled our freshman enrollment from last year, we need to offer these students a full array of majors with the facilities to support those areas of study.

Improving visibility and support for faculty scholarship

            This agenda item is a recommendation that was brought forth by the GFO Instructional and Research Support Committee last year, under the leadership of Nancy Place.  The IRSC recommendation to enhance support for faculty scholarship was approved by the EC.  A faculty lecture series was recommended, funding for that endeavor is being considered. 

Meetings with President Emmert and Provost Wise

            In response to the IRSC recommendations and broader goals to tell the UWB story, Dan has extended an invitation to President Emmert and Provost Wise to meet with the faculty, staff and students at UWB to open dialog about UWB's mission and plans for the future.  Dan has received a positive response from the Provost and a suggestion to include Doug Wadden, Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and Planning   The UWB mission has changed since the expansion of lower division and we may want to re-visit our mission and determine what is needed for student success and how to get the support to offer our students the programs and facilities they need to pursue their educational plans.

UWB day in Olympia

            Dan would like to encourage faculty to visit the State Legislature and will work to coordinate a trip to Olympia for faculty, students and staff to tell the UWB story and gain support to move forward on the UWB3 building and other important issues for growth and funding.  The question of a campus in Everett or north Snohomish County is still in play and may have an impact on buildout of UWB (e.g. UWB3).  We must continue to move forward and stress to the legislature that UWB can satisfy many of the regional needs in education and that we need the investment of facilities and funding now to meet those needs.

Discussion items raised by the faculty

The meeting adjourned at 2:00 pm.

Minutes submitted by Barbara Van Sant