University Planning Council
Minutes for September 26, 2008
Present: Melissa Acker, Gwen Ashburn, Buffy Bagwell, Becky Doyle, Jane Fernandes, Archer Gravely, Herman Holt, Jeff Konz, Jim Kuhlman, Nick Ladd, Amy Lanou, Linda Nelms, Adrienne Oliver, Dan Pierce, Anne Ponder, Christine Riley, Betsy Wilson
Absent: Amanda Alvarez, Bill Haas, Bill Haggard, Bill Massey, John Pierce, Barbara Svenson
Guests: Patrice Mitchell, Ed Katz, Wilma Sherrill
UPC met in Highsmith 104 from 3:00-4:45 pm.
1. Chancellor Ponder gave UPC an update on the budget, noting that both the state and national economies have changed over the last two weeks. She indicated that the magnitude of the problem was significant. Chancellor Ponder stated that the recent salary increases will stand, and we want to invest in and protect the people who work here. In raw numbers, UNC Asheville’s state budget is $52M of which $42M is in salaries and benefits. Additionally, costs such as utilities and student scholarships funds are either not directly controllable or are already committed. The remaining $5.3M in operating budgets is the universe to manage a reduction. Due to two separate budget cuts from the State, we must cut $912,000 (2.6%) from this $5.3M. We have also been advised to plan for an additional cut of $370,000 (1%). These reductions translate into a 10 % cut for Academic Affairs and 15% for the rest of the University’s State accounts. Chancellor Ponder stated that we need to carefully manage all faculty and staff vacancies, including those that have been advertised. Most vacant staff positions will be delayed this year. She also indicated that we need to improve our enrollment right away through recruitment and retention.
2. Mr. Kuhlman gave a demonstration on Moodle as a tool for managing the work of the strategic planning workgroups. Moodel is course management software and can be accessed through One Port/Quick Links. In the Moodle system, UPC is a “class” and each workgroup will have a “topic”.
3. Dr. Wilson led a discussion of how the planning workgroups were functioning. Dr. Pierce noted the importance of faculty involvement but suggested that it was not necessary to have Faculty Senate members on every workgroup. Dr. Fernandez suggested reducing the number of workgroups into three larger groups. Dr. Katz suggested that each workgroup designate a “Moodle person” other than the convener. Chancellor Ponder asked workgroup conveners to communicate their best practices with Ms. Riley. Chancellor Ponder and Provost Fernandes will consider the recommendation of the group and will provide suggestions for clarifying and simplifying the workgroup process. Dr. Lanou asked how we would be inviting the participation of those without specific titles or formal roles on campus who might have an interest or passion in working on the plan. Dr. Holt suggested a general call to the campus go out from the Chief of Staff, so that we may include as many eager participants as possible.
4. UPC’s next meeting is scheduled for Friday, October 10, 3:00-4:30 pm in HU 104.