University Planning Council
Minutes for March 31, 2009
Present: Melissa Acker, Buffy Bagwell, Peg Downes, Becky Doyle, Jane Fernandes, Archer Gravely, Bill Haggard, Bill Haas, Jeff Konz, Jim Kuhlman, Nick Ladd, Amy Lanou, Keya Maitra, Bill Massey, Linda Nelms, Adrienne Oliver, Dan Pierce John Pierce, Anne Ponder, Christine Riley, Betsy Wilson
Absent: Amanda Alvarez, Barbara Svenson
Guests: Pat McClellan, Rusty Marts, Patrice Mitchell, Roy James, Keith Bramlett, Deborah Miles, Cortland Mercer
UPC met on March 31, from 3:00 to 5:15 in HU 221.
1. In a budget update, Chancellor Ponder reported that our strategy of not filling vacant positions and ceasing purchasing has been sufficient to meet the 7% cut for the current year. There is a chance it could get worse and we will know more about both this year and next year after April 15. UPC will be asked to help with budget priorities and planning for next year, so there may be additional meetings in the next few months. As good news, Chancellor Ponder reported that the recent $1.5M gift announced at the last all campus meeting will be used to fund scholarships for women and minorities ($1M), Zeis building science equipment ($.25M), and as seed money for a new endowed chair ($.25M). Given the restrictions on the use of the gift, this new funding does not help with our current budget crisis.
2. Chancellor Ponder reported that the mission study is underway and will be completed this semester under the leadership of the Provost. The Faculty Senate, SGA, and CSAC will be consulted before any potential revision to our new mission statement is reviewed by UPC. Dr. Wilson reported that she will send a timeline and draft mission statement to the community soon.
3. In response to the Faculty Senate’s resolution on enrollment growth, Chancellor Ponder stated that we have an enrollment plan and that we are proceeding in accordance with the plan. Additionally, if we choose to depart from the plan, potential changes will be fully aired. In response to the Faculty Senate resolution, Dr. Wilson submitted the following statement.
The Sense of the Senate Resolution of January 22, 2009 was brought before the University Planning Council (UPC) by the Chair of the Institutional Development Committee (IDC) on February 18, 2009. Both the IDC and the UPC affirm that any changes in enrollment plans are to be debated in UPC to assure that any growth decisions are integrated, coherent, and widely-accepted. The statements that occasioned the Sense of the Senate Resolution were reviewed and compared to the document generated by the Task Force on Enrollment Growth and University Size and subsequent documents that related to that document (The “Size” Question: A Function of Quality 7-1-2006, The Optimal Size of UNC Asheville – 2007, and Building Capacity at UNC Asheville – 2008). The UPC did not see a discrepancy between the stated goal of adding approximately 100 full-time students a year each year for the next ten years and the targets suggested by the documents. Should enrollment increase at precisely that rate, given the number of full time students enrolled at the time the Task Force made its recommendation, the school should still be within the 10 percent window that was outlined in the Enrollment Growth documents.
4. UNC Asheville Board of Trustees is in the process of conducting a fourth-year evaluation of Chancellor Ponder, as required by Board of Governors policy. The evaluation will be led by Dr. James Woodward, former Chancellor of UNC-Charlotte. UPC members will be asked to participate in the evaluation. Chancellor Ponder encouraged UPC members to provide candor and directness to create the best possible feedback.
5. Dr. Fernandes led a discussion of the latest definition of diversity. She reported that the definition has been in progress for nearly a year and has been through several rounds. She also stated that the definition may not satisfy everyone, but most can live with it. It is a broad statement of inclusion that has been discussed and approved by CSAC, SGA, and the Faculty Senate. The definition is a starting place and we will be conducting an inventory of all programs and budgets related to diversity to determine what is successful. In a question about diversity priorities, Dr. Fernandes responded that all elements of the diversity definition were important. Dr. Haas proposed that UPC accept the definition, and UPC unanimously approved the diversity statement.
6. Ms. Riley led a discussion of the strategic plan dashboard.. As part of this review, UPC viewed the diversity benchmarks for the first time. UPC provided feedback to the Diversity Action Council on the benchmarks. Interesting questions were raised about how to define the color codes, amount of detail to show on the dashboard vs readability, who is the audience, what is our target philosophy, and should these reports be publicly available on our web site. The current benchmarks and draft dashboard layout are attached. UPC agreed that their feedback on the benchmarks would go back to the Strategic Plan workgroups, and they would decide what the benchmarks will be, and will start to develop targets and measurements for their benchmarks.