College Senate Bulletin

Bulletin 25
Pages 864 - 871
14 April 2000

Page  Topic
865 Senate Meetings
865 Upcoming Committee Meetings
  Messages from Chair
865 New Correction to 4/4 Senate Minutes
866 Invitation for Data on Foreign Language Requirement
866-871 Executive Committee Meeting (6 April)



Correspondence: Becky L. Glass, Department of Sociology, Sturges 122C
E-mail: Phone: 245-5336



Remaining scheduled Senate Meeting

May 2

4:00 pm, Newton 204

Upcoming Committee Meetings

Executive Committee will meet April 20 at 12:45 in South 110.

Faculty Affairs Committee

Both subcommittees will meet April 18 and April 25 at 4:00 pm. For location, contact Chair Nick Schiavetti

Student Affairs Committee will meet April 18 at 4:00 pm. For location, contact Chair Emilye Crosby.


Thanks to Charlie Freeman's sharp eyes, there should be a change to the following paragraph from the April 4 College Senate minutes, on p. 816 of the Bulletin:

The proposal to change the motion to read "through fourth semester (202)"instead of "through second semester (102)" passed with 37 in favor, 14 against, and 2 abstentions.

The corrected paragraph should read:
The proposal to change the motion to read "through second semester (102) "instead of "through fourth semester (202)" passed with 37 in favor, 14 against, and 2 abstentions.

Invitation for Data Relevant to the Discussion of
Foreign Language Requirement

There were several pieces of data provided during the Senate discussion of the foreign language requirement that I am not sure I had the time to properly process during the discussion. In addition, there are data that I think would be useful to know that did not come up. Assuming there are others who feel the same way, I'd like to suggest that campus community members who have data relevant to the foreign language requirement send the information to me by Wed. April 19 or Wed. April 26, and I will print it in Bulletins 26 and 27.

I do not want to set a precedent which turns the Senate Bulletin into a Congressional Record; this would have me drawn and quartered by future chairs!

But on this particular issue, which must be addressed under a short timeframe imposed by the Board of Trustees, I think it would be helpful to have time, before the May 2 Senate meeting, to reflect on data to help us arrive at a well-informed conclusion.

Minutes of Senate Executive Committee

April 6, 2000

Present: B. Glass, C. Leary, J. Ballard, M. Mohan, A. Gridley, N. Schiavetti, B. Gohlman, J. Bushnell, T. Bazzett, E. Crosby, E. Wallace, K. Cylke, B. Dixon, C. Dahl.

Call To Order: Chair B. Glass called the meeting to order at 12:50 pm.

Adoption of Agenda: The agenda was approved as printed.

Approval of Minutes: The minutes of the Executive Committee Meeting on March 16, 2000, were approved as printed on pp. 779-784 of College Senate Bulletin #23.

New Business: B. Glass reported that Dean Greenfield forwarded to the Executive Committee a request from an Army ROTC officer in Rochester regarding academic credit for ROTC courses. The officer made a presentation to Dean Greenfield and would like to make a presentation to the appropriate Senate committee. Executive Committee is asked to decide which committee, if any, should hear the presentation. B. Glass also noted Exec. members should have received background information on this question, including copies of the Army ROTC request, as well as past Senate discussions (1990) on the issues involved. She called for discussion.

Several Exec. members noted that the question had been brought up in the past, with substantial opposition on the campus to granting Geneseo academic credit for ROTC courses. It was noted that the person who initiated the current request is not a Geneseo faculty member, and that the ROTC courses in question are RIT courses available to Geneseo students through the Rochester Area Colleges Cross-Registration Agreement. Past opposition to offering Geneseo credit centered on several key issues, including the place of such courses in the curriculum, the problem of possible gender/race/sexual preference discrimination in the Army and ROTC, and the qualifications of the instructors of such courses. K. Cylke suggested that the presentation should not be made to any Senate committee. A. Gridley asked whether there was any support on campus for the request. C. Dahl emphasized that, since the request did not have a traditional departmental "home," the Dean probably wished to determine whether or not the Senate wished to pursue the question. N. Schiavetti noted that students can still participate in an ROTC program if they wish (through RIT), and B. Gohlman noted that students also can seek ROTC scholarships. With the rest of the committee in agreement, K. Cylke moved that the request for a presentation to Senate (or a Senate committee) not be accepted because it did not come from a member of the Geneseo faculty and the courses for which credit is requested are not sponsored by a Geneseo department or program. J. Bushnell seconded the motion, and it passed unanimously.

President’s Report (C. Dahl): C. Dahl reported on two items:

  1. The state legislature is moving more quickly than expected toward a state budget. A conference committee currently is working on the higher education portion of the budget. Although the amount is unclear, discussion appears to be centered on adding to the Governor’s initial budget proposal. SUNY staff have analyzed the issues involved in how the additional funds would be spent.
  2. C. Dahl invited faculty to send (via email to A. Hatton) lists of the activities of individuals and departments that involve consultation or collaboration with the greater Rochester and Monroe County community. Such activities might be of the social action variety, but could also include consultation with for-profit and non-profit businesses. To assist the Geneseo team working with the Knight Foundation consortium, it will be helpful to determine how the Geneseo faculty are involved with the Rochester metropolitan community, as well as how these activities relate to the liberal arts mission of the college. Faculty also are invited to attend a breakfast (as specified in invitations sent to faculty via email) focused on this topic. The goal is to recognize the contributions of individuals and departments to the urban Rochester area.
Provost’s Report (B. Dixon): B. Dixon reported on two items:
  1. The personnel process is on schedule, and perhaps a little ahead of schedule. Personnel decisions should be complete by the expected times.
  2. Six or seven contracts for new faculty are "signed, sealed, and delivered." Four searches were cancelled because of limitations in the applicant pool; some searches may be redefined before reopening the search. Several other searches are still ongoing.
Chair’s Report (B. Glass): B. Glass reported on five items:
  1. B. Glass would like to postpone the second reading of the Policy Committee’s motion for a foreign language requirement until the May 2nd Senate meeting. One reason for doing so is that FAC will be presenting two motions for first reading; if the meeting goes long and these motions are not heard, there will not be time for a second reading this year. Second, B. Glass would like to circulate in the Bulletin some of the graphical data presented at the Senate meeting last week. Third, postponing will still allow a second reading this year for the foreign language proposal. The Policy Committee will still present the motion on pre-major admissions policies next week.
  2. As part of Student Employment Celebration Week, B. Glass presented the Senate Work Study students with a small honorarium (gift certificate) to acknowledge the hard work and dedication they have shown this year.
  3. Only one more Executive Committee meeting is scheduled. B. Glass requested that all hold open May 4 for a final Executive Committee meeting.
  4. K. Cylke has written a draft of a charge for the ad hoc committee on sabbaticals. B. Glass asked that Executive Committee members read the draft in preparation for discussion at the next meeting (April 20).
  5. The Academic Freedom Conference was very interesting. The six representatives from Geneseo were the largest contingent. These representatives are hoping to find a useful way to report to the campus community on the proceedings of the conference. Among other interesting events, the Chair-Elect of the Binghamton campus Senate reported that their campus was seriously considering non-compliance with the BOT mandates if their current proposals are not accepted. The question of how the BOT would respond to such an action was unclear.
B. Dixon noted that Binghamton, like the Geneseo campus, already had programs that were very similar to the BOT requirements. B. Glass added that the Binghamton concerns seemed to be about the "principle" of the matter. Treasurer’s Report (M. Mohan): Checks were cut for the student honoraria mentioned in the Chair’s report. No other report.

Central Council (A. Gridley): A. Gridley reported on two items:

  1. There is currently no official candidate to replace A. Gridley’s position next year. She is hoping for a strong write-in candidate.
  2. A. Gridley also brought to the attention of the Executive Committee a set of posters that were placed around campus after the last Senate meeting. These posters suggest that the Foreign Language policy that passed first reading last week is a weak substitute for "proficiency." A. Gridley noted that, whether or not one agrees with this position, it is refreshing to see some activism in response to Senate action.
M. Mohan and C. Dahl noted that the Foreign Language department was not responsible for placing the posters. Faculty Affairs Committee (N. Schiavetti): Two motions will be presented at Senate for first reading on Tuesday, April 11, 2000. These are printed in the Bulletin.
  1. The first motion will propose extending for one year the use of the questions on the current SOFI form. The intent of this motion is to allow continued research on the choice of a form and other issues, including the possibility of modifying the local form to incorporate the best ideas from some of the available national forms. The current subcommittee will pass on a charge to next year’s committee.
  2. The second motion will propose adding to the instructions on the current SOFI form some of the language that presently is found in the memo from J. McNally to the student proctor. Specifically, this information includes how the SOFI information is used in personnel decisions, how faculty benefit from student feedback, and when the professor actually receives the SOFI results. The goal of adding this material to the front of the SOFI form will be to better inform students.



    A. Gridley asked about the outcome of previous FAC discussions on the possibility of using a student proctoring program for administering the SOFIs. She had heard from student senators that the department chairs were opposed to this idea. N. Schiavetti responded that the idea is one of many that can be included in the continued discussions next year. B. Dixon noted that the idea was presented to the department chairs. There was no real opposition to the idea, except that the chairs realized the logistics of implementing such a program with Work Study students would be extremely difficult. Specifically, there is no guarantee that Work Study students will be available at that point in the semester, and some departments do not have WS students at all. Even if WS students are still employed, they may not be available to proctor SOFIs during every class time. B. Dixon also noted that she has talked with J. McNally about making the drop boxes more secure by moving the boxes inside the Office of Institutional Research and Milne library. This move may reduce concerns about perceived access to the completed forms.

    N. Schiavetti noted that these issues were discussed at the forums, but that attendance was low (two to three dozen at each day session; a dozen people at each evening session, many of whom were FAC or Senate Executive committee members). The committee thinks that the issues need more discussion across the campus. Part of the idea of the first motion is to extend the education about the issues to the campus community next year, including orientation of incoming students. More forums will be sponsored next year. There have been many opinions expressed about the SOFIs, but there is a need is for more well-informed opinions about both the forms and the process.

    B. Glass asked whether FAC had obtained any information about the cost or effort involved in making the change suggested by the second motion for only one year. N. Schiavetti replied that he has talked with J. McNally. Because the forms are ordered for only one year at a time, there should be no major problem. C. Dahl asked whether there was room on the SOFI form for the additional material. N. Schiavetti replied that some reorganization and font changes may be necessary, but the change can be done.

    B. Glass also noted that the charge to the committee has led to many stories about what's wrong with the form and its administration. Some will probably say that we have used the form successfully for some years. C. Dahl added that these SOFI forms are similar to those used over several years at many institutions. B. Gohlman noted that if there is a high degree of concern, attendance at the forums should be better. B. Dixon noted that it is better to keep the current form for another year than to make changes in haste. Some consistency in the format is useful.

  4. N. Schiavetti reported that the subcommittee on personnel issues will not have a motion to offer. The subcommittee will continue its discussions this semester. In its annual report, FAC will suggest a continuation of the discussions next year.
Graduate Affairs (J. Bushnell): No report.

Policy Committee (B. Gohlman): The Policy Committee will present one motion for second reading at the Senate meeting next Tuesday. This proposal concerns pre-major admission policies for the School of Education. The proposal for a Foreign Language graduation requirement will be presented at the May 2nd Senate meeting. B. Gohlman asked whether there was any need for additional forums on the Foreign Language requirement.

In discussion, A. Gridley noted that forums don’t seem to work well at Geneseo, but that there seems to be no other option. J. Bushnell recalled that B. Glass plans to include in the Bulletin the graphs presented by the Foreign Language department at the last Senate meeting; she asked whether "position papers" could also be included. C. Leary noted that anyone could write such a statement and send it to the Senate Chair, who decides what to include in the Bulletin. B. Gohlman asked whether the Chair could solicit some position statements. C. Dahl also suggested that the General Education committee might wish to make a statement, given that the proposal originally came from their work. C. Leary cautioned against asking for a statement from one group and not from others. He suggested instead making a general call for any interested groups to put together informational or position statements. B. Glass acknowledged this issue, and asked whether the General Education committee had minutes of their discussions that might be published in the Bulletin. B. Gohlman responded that T. Greenfield had circulated informal email minutes after each meeting, but these were not published in the Bulletin. He suggested that a "general call" would also make it possible for Gen Ed to send a statement if they desired. C. Leary suggested that it could be helpful to see the Gen Ed minutes on this issue. B. Dixon noted that the minutes are not usually included in the Senate Bulletin because Gen Ed is not a Senate committee. B. Glass asked for and received a general consensus that she could ask Gen Ed if they are comfortable with publishing their minutes, and that she could send out a general call for other groups to print their positions on the Foreign Language requirement.

Student Affairs (E. Crosby): The committee will meet again next Tuesday to continue their discussions. In the meantime, E. Crosby asked for help in locating policies on several issues, if such policies exist.

  1. She first asked whether there were Geneseo policies on "hate speech" – including both general speeches and hate-speech directed at individuals. J. Bushnell noted that the student handbook on the web covers the issue of "harassment", which may be essentially the same thing.
  2. Second, E. Crosby asked about policies regarding guidelines for Residence Life on dealing with student conflicts that appear to be racially motivated. K. Cylke responded that there are guidelines for the disciplinary procedures on student conflicts in general, but that he was unaware of any that dealt specifically with racially-motivated conflicts.
  3. Third, E. Crosby asked about policies regarding student requests for roommate reassignment when the request is motivated by racial or other group differences. A. Gridley suggested contacting Residence Life regarding the training they provide for RAs and RDs. C. Dahl also suggested talking with Dean Sancilio about the administration of disciplinary proceedings. M. Mohan noted that RAs take specific training that certifies them as peer mediators. E. Crosby noted that she is aware of the training programs, but that she is looking for stated policies.
Undergraduate Curriculum (T. Bazzett): The committee held its last meeting on Monday. Approximately 20+ proposals were passed. These will be presented to Senate at the next meeting. T. Bazzett thanked President Dahl for providing dinner at the Campus House for the committee. Vice-Chair’s Report (C. Leary): No report.

University Faculty Senator (E. Wallace): UFS will meet April 27 – 29 in Utica at the College of Technology.

Unfinished Business: None.

Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned at 1:45 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Joan C. Ballard
Secretary of the College Senate