September 27, 2004
University Senates Conference
June 22, 2004
University Senates Conference (USC) met in Urbana with Vice President Gardner in Henry Administration Building (President Stukel attended by videoconference) in the morning. Discussions focused on legislative updates, multi-year contracts, and the administrative review project. An organizational meeting of the 2004/2005 USC members followed. USC met with Provost Richard Herman during lunch and the early afternoon. A business meeting followed in the Illini Union.
The meeting with President Stukel and Vice President Gardner included the following topics:
- Legislative update. President Stukel indicated that the state's legislature has been focusing on the budget issues, so there is little to report on other legislation that might impact the university. There was a reversal in financial aid legislation so that some of the funding to be targeted to lower income students will continue to be directed to middle income students, mostly those attending private universities in the state.
- Multi-year contracts. When asked for his view on multi-year contracts, the President responded that it depends on the position and whether appropriate termination language is included in the contract. Certain positions may be appropriate for multi-year contracts, such as clinical staff in the UIC hospital.
- Administrative Review project. USC asked VP Gardner about the status of the Administrative Review process. The project has been completed and a final report distributed. Cost savings in several areas were identified, and streamlining some procedures was explored. Additional ways to use resources efficiently will be investigated even though the initial project has been completed.
The organizational meeting of the 2004/2005 USC included the election of the chair, Mike Grossman, UIUC; secretary, Elliot Kaufman, UIC; and the executive committee (Terry Bodenhorn, UIS; Don Chambers, UIC; Joe Finnerty, UIUC; and Pat Langley, UIS).
The discussion with Provost and Chancellor Designate Richard Herman included his views on the challenges and issues facing the Urbana campus. Dr. Herman highlighted the decrease in state support, the need for student access to quality education, salaries, facilities, fundraising, strategic support of programs, and international activities as just a few of the issues. When asked about the Chief Illiniwek controversy, he indicated that dialogues were ongoing without a set timetable. He affirmed that there would be a salary program for FY05. In response to a question about delays in paperwork for appointments, he stated that this is a serious concern and that it would most likely be a full year before some of the Banner-related issues were resolved.
The business meeting covered a number of different topics. The following matters were addressed:
- Approval of the May 26, 2004 minutes.
- Presidential search. It was reported that the search committee anticipates preliminary interviews with candidates (yet to be identified) in October with interviews by the Board of Trustees likely to occur in October or November. The search firm is actively identifying candidates during the summer.
- OT-193. Interim Information Security Policy. Because of concerns about email privacy and security, a small USC task force will be appointed to explore issues of information security. It was noted that the UIUC Information Security Policy was the most developed from the three campuses and should serve as a model.
- OT-207. Retreat for USC. USC will hold an evening meeting before the September 28 USC meeting in order to provide orientation for new members.
- Discussion of future guests regarding University issues of concern.
Nancy P. O'Brien
USC Representative to UIUC Senate Executive Committee