CEAS Dean Brett Peters requested continuing augmentation for Biomedical Engineering due to a lack of tenured faculty; continuing augmentation for Material Science and Engineering was also requested. Faculty members suggested as augmenters were considered appropriate by the UC.
Provost Britz discussed fall semester protocols, which will be reviewed at a meeting next Tuesday. On the agenda will be how to deal with unvaccinated students and faculty/staff. N. Rothfels asked whether a threshold will be established at which the prevalence of the virus on campus would trigger certain policy changes. J. Snethen noted that the number of fully vaccinated people infected is going up. Provost Britz suggested that a mask mandate on campus is the most likely scenario if cases increase. A standard set of policies to be announced by instructors will be developed before the semester begins. A statement along the lines of the one suggested by P. Brodwin on the AAUP e-mail thread could serve as an example and was provided to Provost Britz: “(1) If you are not vaccinated, you absolutely must wear a face covering at all times in this classroom. That is UWM’s explicit policy, and you must comply with it. (2) If you are already vaccinated, you may choose to wear a face mask, and no-one in this class should question your choice. (3) This university strongly encourages everyone to get vaccinated. That’s the best way to protect your health. It’s also the best way to keep this class in-person and avoid having it pushed to Canvas because of an outbreak of Covid19 on campus”. Federally funded PCR testing on campus will end before the fall semester begins; B. Arnold and K. Dolan suggested that antigen testing might be made available as an affordable alternative.
UC Chair K. Dolan reported on committee vacancies; she is still looking for someone to fill a one-year position on the FRRC. UC representatives for committees will also need to be assigned at the first UC meeting for the 2021-2022 academic year. UWM is planning to hold an in-person commencement in December that would include spring 2021 graduates. The Expanded Cabinet meeting included information to be covered in the August 4 Townhall Meeting for faculty and academic staff as well as the August 3 Townhall for students and parents. K. Hayes and R. Van Harpen reported on Student Affairs and admin activities, including a UWM vaccine incentive program that will include August-October vaccination clinics on campus to be held in collaboration with the Milwaukee Department of Public Health. How to provide these services at Washington and Waukesha as well is still being discussed. Enrollments are down 6.6% in terms of returning students; CARES money is being used to target students who are close to graduating to help them register for fall semester. Dorms are going to return to normal with 85-90% occupancy; the remaining rooms will be reserved as potential isolation spaces. Events will focus on newly incoming students as well as rising sophomores to make up for what they missed last fall. R. van Harpen reported that new policies are coming; campus will continue to record self-report COVID cases but this would be fairly meaningless unless testing in some form continues on campus. M. Spanuda of Risk Management reported on plans for buildings for fall; hand sanitizers will continue to be used; cleaning protocols will be continued but some of the signage will be taken down or replaced and social distancing will no longer be practiced in classrooms. Construction on campus will begin in September and continue into spring, including the Klotsche expansion, the Union and other projects. An instructional FAQ is being developed for the fall. CARES funding is being used to install lecture capture equipment in some classrooms but it will not be universally available and student expectations should be managed accordingly.
There were no Members’ Reports.
Chancellor Mone, Provost Britz, ASC chair Kyla Esguerra and incoming ASC chair Nicole Oswald will attend the August 17, 2021 meeting.