August 9, 2022

The UC approved an updated “Interim COVID-Related Health and Safety Policy” submitted by UWM administration.  A permanent policy will be brought to the Faculty Senate in the upcoming Fall semester.  The committee also submitted a slate of faculty nominees to serve on the Provost Search & Screen Committee, in response to an urgent request from Chancellor Mone.

June 7, 2022

UC Chair N. Rothfels reported that he has accepted the position of acting L&S Dean, and thus will be resigning from the UC, effective June 13th.  The UC elected member Mark D. Schwartz to assume chairing the committee, effective next week, and for the 2022-2023 academic year.

May 17, 2022

UC Chair N. Rothfels reported:  1) He received a letter with concerns about CGS from a faculty member; 2) The Chancellor’s Extended Cabinet meeting addressed UW-System-wide IT security and other policy related issues; 3) SSEA will not need to do any administrator reviews in 2022-2023, so will look to discuss procedural reorganizations starting in the Fall; 4)  Small campus grants in support of faculty research will be continued next year; and 5) The next Board of Regents meeting will be on our campus June 9-10.

The UC met in closed session with EDS Director J. Cimpl-Wiemer to discuss DEI challenges related to recent campus faculty/staff demographics, retention, and future recruitment.

Finally, UC member D. Misra reported that the APBC met last week, and the PEC has been discussing changes to the traffic patterns on campus.

May 10, 2022

UC Chair N. Rothfels reported:  1) L&S Dean S. Gronert has been appointed as interim Provost; 2) He attended the Governance Reps meeting in Madison last Friday.  Major issues discussed included the need for a more robust conversation with UW-System on proposed policy changes, and what the actual timing will be on the distribution of the “free speech” survey to students in the Fall 2022 semester; and 3) UW-Madison’s PROFS organization, as well as several Faculty Reps from other campuses have already met with the incoming UW-System President.  Rothfels and Reisel will start working on extending and invitation for President J. Rothman to meet with our campus governance groups in Fall 2022.

The UC met with Chancellor M. Mone and new VC for Development and Alumni Relations J. Nesbitt, who provided the following updates: 1)  UC members introduced themselves to the new VC, and she provided an overview of on-going plans for actions and staff reorganizations—mostly compatible with things already being implemented by staff in response to feedback after the last capital campaign; 2) The search for the “permanent” Provost, as well as the reboot of the VC for Marketing, Communications, and University Relations search will both start in late summer or early fall; and 3) The Chancellor is gearing up for the June Regents meeting in order to provide a strong push forward for the UWM funding initiative.

Finally, the UC unanimously elected N. Rothfels to continue as chair in 2022-2023, and member M. D. Schwartz also agreed to serve as Faculty Rep and UC Liaison.

May 3, 2022

UC Chair N. Rothfels reported:  1) Interim Provost interviews are underway and will wrap up tomorrow—the selection is expected by the end of the week; 2) Chancellor M. Mone indicated that the NWQ Building A demolition remains a “tug of war” legal issue between the State and City; 3) Provost Britz discussed his preparations to ensure leadership continuity on campus; 4) Rothfels attended the memorial service for the two UWM students who passed away; 5)  At the ASC meeting yesterday he heard about their continued efforts to help staff navigate the “Teaching Faculty” title transition; and 6)  Following up on the DP appointment discussion from last week, Nigel clarified that there is no set compensation increase systematically associated with the conferral of the honorific.

The UC met with Provost J. Britz, who provided the following updates: 1) He is working quickly on his transition to the new position at UW-System; 2) UW-System appears to be poised to implement significant changes in operation—shifting toward a role involving more support of campuses; and 3) SARUP will now remain together as a school in the new College of the Arts and Architecture.

Sec of U J. Reisel reported that:  1) Changes to FRRC procedures will be coming to the Faculty Senate meeting next week for consideration; and 2) He is working on organizing Faculty Documents so that those still relevant to current P&P matters can be easily found.

Finally, member E. Bornstein reported that the AAFEC met last Friday with Assoc. VC C. Vang and new AVC & Chief Human Resources Office M. Fessahaye regarding implementation of DEI search & screen processes in connection with campus faculty/staff recruitments.  Member M. D. Schwartz also informed the UC that changes are apparently underway in campus dorm meal plans that may impact Union food services starting in Fall 2022.  Details on this issue, as well as a response to concerns raised by Schwartz are expected to be provided by Student Services soon.

April 26, 2022

UC Chair N. Rothfels reported:  1) He thought the CARE group presentation at Senate last week went very well; 2) The deadline for applications for the interim Provost position is tomorrow, so there will be a very fast turnaround time for this appointment (Nigel is a co-chair of the committee that will make recommendations to the Chancellor); 3) FAA VC R. Van Harpen has declined a request from AAUP to do salary review for faculty in the CGS.  She hopes to do a comprehensive salary review in the future and will do so in consultation with the governance groups; and 4) Nigel will continue discussions regarding campus thesis/dissertation submission requirements over the summer.  Apparently, many campuses that allow students to opt out of submitting their work to for-profit entities (i.e., Proquest), still do require them to digitally deposit it with the local library.

The UC met with current ASC Chair N. Oswald and incoming ASC Chair M. Priem, who provided the following updates: 1)  This will be Nicole’s last meeting with the UC as she will be on leave from now through the summer—Mike will serve as acting Chair and meet with the UC over the summer; 2)  The TTC process continues to generate discussion, and they are still working on the appeals process and related logistics; 3) ASC will be participating in an academic staff workload study group, which is expected to parallel the process currently underway for faculty; and 4)  Nicole met with the Chancellor to express ASC views/expectations for the new Provost.

The committee addressed several matters of new business:  1) Concerns about notifications when a student death occurs, as well as how related campus messaging is handled were discussed; and 2) Clarification was provided in response to a question from a department Executive Committee about Distinguished Professors.  Distinguished Professor is not a rank, but an honorific, so any actions related to it are not personnel actions.

Finally, member J. Snethen reported that the PAC passed a combined incomplete policy, enacted non-gender specific language changes to the Emeritus/a policy, and codified a concurrent degree policy.  These will come to the Senate at the May meeting as automatic consent items.

April 19, 2022

UC Chair N. Rothfels reported:  1) The VC for Marketing, Communications, and University Relations search has failed, but will be relaunched soon with a goal of completing this hire in Fall 2022; and 2) The UWM Union redesign in underway, and the building will be closed all summer.

Provost J. Britz provided the following updates: 1) When he takes up his new position at UW-System, he still plans to be on campus for part of each week; 2)  He feels the campus is in a good position to maintain our current momentum on major campus initiatives; and 3) He agreed to follow-up on a direct request from the UC to make current information readily available to the Secretary of University regarding faculty rank numbers and dynamics.

The committee had a discussion with UR Chair E. Levine, new Compliance officer K. Amato, FAA VC R. Van Harpen, and Senior Director of Integrated Marketing & Communications M. Johnson concerning the bad messaging symbolized by the recent “fraud posters”, as well as the need for real/transparent communication between the faculty and administration in such matters.  The future role for the University Relations committee also needs more discussion.  The UC will plan to meet with members of this committee to help chart a course forward early in Fall 2022.

April 12, 2022

The UC discussed our concerns about a student “free speech” survey (which has been widely reported in the news).  The survey is apparently now going to be conducted on all UW-System campuses in Fall 2022.

Chancellor M. Mone provided the following updates: 1) Last Sunday’s recognition ceremony (for those who had graduated from UWM in recent semesters–but did not have an opportunity to attend an in-person event due to the pandemic), was a resounding success, with about 500 students participating; 2) A distinguished alumni gathering and award ceremony, held at the Pfister Hotel last Friday, was also a very successful event; 3) Discussions continue with UW-System leadership about “Tuition Promise” student scholarship funds—it is hoped this program can be implemented across all campuses in Fall 2023; 4) Issues preventing the planned demolition of NWQ “Building A” are far from resolved, and it is unclear when that work might be able to move forward; and 5)  Campus leadership is monitoring the COVID situation carefully, and preparing to respond as needed to any changing circumstances.

The committee had a productive discussion with GFC Chair J. Burges and Interim Graduate Dean J. Puskar about graduate students being required to submit their theses and dissertations to Proquest (a for-profit company) with minimal exceptions.  This issue needs more discussion, especially consideration of alternatives.  The GFC will take up this matter at their first meeting in Fall 2022, which UC Chair N. Rothfels will plan to attend.

April 5, 2022

UC Chair N. Rothfels reported:  1) The VC for Marketing, Communications, and University Relations finalist interviews are taking place this week; 2)  He has attended interviews for Compliance Manager (in the Office of Sponsored Programs); 3)  Discussions continue about faculty workload as part of the 2030 process; and 4)  After feedback from UC members, he will rework the CARES Team document for consideration/presentation at the next Faculty Senate meeting.

Provost J. Britz provided the following updates: 1) There has been a substantial increase in admitted international undergraduate and graduate students for the Fall 2022 semester; and 2) Undergraduate tuition increases will not be considered until at least after the 2022 election.

March 29, 2022

UC Chair N. Rothfels reported:  1) The Chancellor is having discussions with incoming UW-System leadership about the possibility of Badger Promise (one-time) funds coming to our campus; 2)  The Chancellor is having constructive conversations with incoming UW-System President J. Rothman and Interim President M. Falbo about the UWM request to the BOR regarding the campus funding formula; 3) He has asked the CARE team to provide their top items for a potential Faculty Senate resolution; 4) He has invited the Interim Graduate Dean and GFC chair to the April 12 UC meeting to discuss the current policy of requiring theses and dissertations to be electronically deposited with an outside vendor; 5)  The UC will encourage the Provost to eliminate gendered language in the emerit policy SAAP; and 6) We will move to a hybrid UC meeting format starting with the next meeting on April 5th.

ASC Chair N. Oswald provided the following updates: 1) She will be on parental leave for May-August, and the ASC Vice-Chair will attend UC meetings during that period; 2) TTC appeals have started with each one running about an hour (there are 174 in total).  Some problems with finding appropriate titles are occurring; and 3) All longer-term lecturer appointments on campus will be transitioned to “teaching faculty” titles, primarily because these have four different levels available.

The UC discussed concerns that have been raised regarding the fraud signage which has been recently (and prominently) posted in campus buildings.  We need a better approach to such messaging, as these posters are ineffective at best, and insulting at worst.  All such messaging needs faculty consultation before deployment.  We also discussed the continuing problem of low faculty salaries with no resolution in sight.  As the very least, faculty governance should be provided with detailed information on a regular basis about UWM faculty salaries broken down by rank and demographics.

Member D. Misra reported that the APBC met the week before spring break, but that most of the issues discussed were like items presented at the Faculty Senate meeting that same week.