University Senate                                                                      Proposed:  May 9, 2008

                                                                                                Adopted:

 

MEETING OF APRIL 11, 2008

President Lee Bollinger called the Senate to order shortly after 1:15 pm in 501 Schermerhorn.  Fifty-three of 100 senators were present during the meeting.

Minutes and agenda: The agenda and the minutes of February 29 were adopted as proposed.

President’s remarks:  The president had just met with the parents of Minghui Yu, the graduate student in Statistics who had died a few days earlier.  He had offered condolences on behalf of the university.  There are plans for a memorial service, but the university also respects the preference of the parents to assess the situation before going ahead with that.  The death was apparently the result of a criminal act; a full investigation is under way, and charges may have been filed.  The president said the Columbia area is safe as urban neighborhoods go, and the university wants to reassure students, faculty, and staff that it intends to keep it that way. 

At the same time, the president said, this is simply a terrible loss.  The key concerns are, first, the family, and then the close-knit community of 30 graduate students in Minhui Yu’s department. 

The president said there was a celebration earlier in the day of the Northwest Corner science building now under construction. This was notable not only because of the commitment to interdisciplinary science the building represents, but also because it’s the last building on the Morningside campus. He said it was worth reflecting on the 110 years of development that have completed this campus, and on the new campus to be built in Manhattanville. He expected the design of the new interdisciplinary science building, by Rafael Moneo, to be stirring architecture.  He said construction is proceeding before all the needed funds have been raised, though there has been an anonymous $20 million gift for this purpose.         

Sen. Daniel Savin (Research Officers) raised the subject of diversity grants Columbia has been offering for the past two years to help increase the number of women and minority faculty in the professional schools. He said the Research Officers Committee has requested that eligibility for these grants be expanded to include professional research officers (PROs).  He cited the section of the Faculty Handbook that shows equivalences between faculty and PROs in qualifications and contributions to their field.  He said many PROs have chosen a non-professorial career path precisely so they can focus on research, but many are still involved in teaching and training students outside the classroom.  He noted that PROs are explicitly included in the mandate of Columbia’s Office of Diversity Initiatives, and making them eligible for these diversity grants will increase career opportunities for faculty-level researchers from underrepresented groups.

The president understood that Sen. Savin had been discussing this issue with Geraldine Downey, Vice Provost for Diversity Initiatives, and he saw no reason to intervene in that conversation.
Sen. Savin said Vice Provost Downey had told him the trustees had allocated funding solely for faculty.  He had inferred that she wasn’t prepared to ask the trustees for funding for researchers.

The president said the commitment to diversity extends to all departments and schools, throughout the staff and student body, but certain special efforts are a priority for the university. The current diversity initiative, which began for faculty in the Arts and Sciences, has now been extended to professional schools. He said the provost’s diversity initiatives office, created a few years ago, is the right place to think about next steps of the kind Sen. Savin was proposing.  The president wanted to talk to Prof. Downey about what the next priorities should be. 

Sen. Savin asked when there might be a response to the research officers’ request.  The president said he didn’t know, but the end of the year was an appropriate time to assess the situation and to decide what kind of funding is available. 

Sen. Michael Adler (Ten., Bus.)  asked if the replacement of Elliot Spitzer by David Paterson as governor would have any effect on the eminent domain process now underway.

The president said Columbia has had successful negotiations with some 37 owners in Manhattanville to buy their commercial properties, and in many cases to help them relocate.  Three owners now remain.  He said eminent domain is an official New York State process, which is now underway for the remaining property in the Manhattanville zone.  The president said he has always said it would be irresponsible for the university to take the option of eminent domain off the table.  Columbia hopes never to have to use it, but it might have to.  He said eminent domain, when done right, serves public purposes, and Columbia’s plans for Manhattanville serve a public purpose.  He said Columbia is not a for-profit enterprise, though he recognized that there is some controversy on this issue.  He said Columbia still hopes to succeed in its negotiations with the three remaining property owners.  He said Governors Pataki and Spitzer both supported Columbia’s expansion efforts, and the university hopes and expects that the Governor Paterson will remain as supportive as he has been in the past. 

Sen. Eric Wang (Stu., CC), referring to the death of Minghui Yu, said Columbia’s security efforts sometimes seem more reactive than proactive.  He recalled a mugging last year near the dorms at 115th and Riverside, which was followed by a strong nighttime presence by Columbia security.  This response seemed to him of limited value after the fact.  The assault on Minghui Yu happened north of campus. How can security be improved in that area, toward 125th Street, where many graduate students live?  Would it be possible to increase the security budget and perhaps provide a permanent outpost in that area?

Sen. Michelle Stockman (Stu., Journalism) said there are numerous anecdotes about episodes of intimidation and even assault specifically directed at international students in the neighborhood north of campus.  Has the university found a pattern of targeting of international students?

The president, responding to Sen. Wang, said he thought Columbia’s security efforts have been very proactive, not reactive. He thought it might be useful to have a report on this issue from James McShane, Associate Vice President for Public Safety.  He ascertained that one Senate committee had already met with Mr. McShane, and recommended continuing these conversations. He praised the professionalism of Mr. McShane and his organization, which he said is constantly trying to figure out ways to improve security. 

The president said overall crime statistics for the neighborhood are low.  Columbia’s precinct, the 26, is the fifth- or sixth-safest in New York City.  But he acknowledged that we live individual lives, not by statistics. He said the university wants to hear of any emerging patterns. 

In response to a question from Sen. Samuel Silverstein (Ten., P&S), the president said an elaborate response to this latest crime was set in motion immediately.  He said the university has also gone through special exercises since the multiple shootings at Virginia Tech a year ago.  He said the administration could provide any level of report for a future meeting on this subject that the Senate might request.

Reports
            —Anne Sullivan, EVP for Finance, on recent problems with Accounts Payable and Procurements.  Ms. Sullivan reported on some backlog problems that Accounts Payable had to address during the past winter.  She said a new technology had to be implemented last fall because the vendor decided late last summer to stop supporting the previous technology.  With little time to react, her office did secure a new technology, which predictably affected the business flow of transactions and documentation between departments and AP.  The project had to be rolled out in October, not the ideal time since it is a month of peak AP activity.  It took some time to implement the new system.  There were also problems in the movement of paper documents between departments and AP.  Along the way there were some significant backlogs in processing times. 

Under the old system, Ms. Sullivan said, travel expenses were typically processed in five business days and invoices from vendors in about twelve days.  During the transition the invoice processing time rose to about twenty days.  A lot of hard work during the late winter  brought processing times back down to the previous levels.  Ms. Sullivan acknowledged a concern about whether these delays would become chronic, and said the answer is no.  But it did take time to work through the problem, and she said departments were extremely supportive in the process.  There was also a lot of dialogue with external vendors, and appeals for their patience. 

Sen. Savin thanked Ms. Sullivan for coming to the meeting, and explained that it was his comments at the previous plenary that had led to her visit.  He listed six issues:
1. When scientific researchers purchase equipment worth more than $2500, the Purchasing Office routinely takes one to two months to process the purchase order, in contrast to peer institutions, which need only days. 
2.  Purchasing routinely fails to provide a copy of the PO to foreign vendors.  Sometimes the omission isn’t discovered for weeks or months. Sen. Savin said he had heard of similar problems from other research groups. 
3.  Accounts Payable is so far behind that certain vendors are refusing to do business with Columbia. Sen. Savin said his own experience was that turnaround time for invoices was much longer than 20 days.
4.  Accounts payable is far behind in reimbursing employees for travel or research, so employees often have to put the expenses on their credit cards, and then have to pay late fees and interest charges because they aren’t reimbursed on time by the university. 
5.  It would be beneficial for the university to adopt the government standard per diem for travel.  This would decrease the amount of paper work required for travel expenses.
6.  The rates Columbia negotiates with vendors are not always the lowest available. 

Sen. Savin stessed that he has heard complaints not only from research officers, but from students and faculty, on Morningside and at the Medical Center, at the Lamont and Nrvis campuses.  Columbia University is a major research university, and without the support structure research needs, projects will go unfinished.  Sen. Savin said his post-docs are here for a limited term, and may have to leave before his research project is finished because of the delays in Purchasing and Accounts Payable.  He said his own research success is imperiled by these problems, and he asked when the effects of recent improvements will be evident. 

Ms. Sullivan said she had only spoken to one of the Sen. Savin’s issues.  She agreed that the objective of the AP and Purchasing departments is to support the research enterprise.  She said she was prepared to follow up on any of the specifics.  She said her tracking of the data shows that one anomaly that can affect processing time is delays in the submission of invoices to AP by departments and schools.  She has tried to alert departments about these delays. But she is also consistently trying to reduce processing time.  Ms. Sullivan said she thought the current standard—five days for a travel reimbursement request, twelve days for a vendor invoice—must be improved, and a number of new steps have just been implemented to this end.

One ingredient is encouraging people to use specific mechanisms for specific types of purchases, and also to work with vendors with whom Columbia has negotiated pricing.  She asked to follow up later with Sen. Savin on instances where Columbia pricing doesn’t seem to be competitive.  As long as Columbia tends to diffuse its spending power, using different mechanisms for purchasing, and to get away from more efficient mechanisms like purchasing cards, the volume of  invoices going to AP just increases, causing more backlogs.

Ms. Sullivan mentioned a new initiative in purchasing at the Medical Center that may help improve research procurement throughout the university.

The president suggested that this conversation could continue in a different setting.  He suggested having Ms. Sullivan come back and report back to the Senate in September after the improvements she is instituting have had a chance to take effect.  He suggested excluding federal  per diem reimbursements for the time being, which he said would involve a significant policy change for the whole institution.

Ms. Sullivan said she would be happy to report back.

The president said he did not want to see issues raised at the Senate that just drift away and never return.  He asked Sen. Savin to be ready to stand up in September if the problems have been resolved, and say so.

In response to a comment from Sen. Silverstein, Ms. Sullivan agreed to provide what she could in the way of benchmarks on pricing at her update in September.

Committee reports.
Libraries: Sen. Silverstein, the chairman, affirmed the excellence of Columbia’s libraries, but said the committee had resolved to ask this year whether there are parts of the libraries system that could function a little better. 

He said the Medical Center library, in the Hammer building, has been disengaged during the last five years from the Morningside library system.  Although there is still collaboration, the two library systems are not collectively administered, and this has led to a situation where the acquisitions budgets are growing at different rates (the Medical Center library at 2 percent a year, the Morningside libraries at 8 percent).  At the same time, he said, the salaries of medical library staff have been lagging behind those of their counterparts at Morningside.  He said Lisa Hogarty, who is now chief operating officer at the Medical Center, is trying to rectify these problems. 

Sen. Silverstein said the committee had learned from Alena Ptak-Danchak, the Medical Center librarian, that 25-40 percent of her staff’s time was being consumed in assisting New York Presbyterian Hospital residents and staff, and that some 40 percent of the hits on the library’s Web site are from Hospital e-mail addresses.  Sen. Silverstein said nothing could be better than having doctors in training using the library to increase their expertise, but he said that when the commons are overgrazed, they have to be made whole somehow.  The committee has raised this issue with Ms. Hogarty, who is now in “balance of trade” negotiations with the Hospital. He stressed that it is important to integrate Hospital residents, who are like teaching fellows for Columbia medical students, into the life of the university in every way possible.  The goal is to make sure the commons are supported by all sides. 

Sen. Silverstein said the Medical Center is now undergoing a major renovation, which required some 300,000 volumes to be moved.  Through extraordinary efforts by Ms. Ptak-Danchak and and Pat Molholt, the library has moved those volumes to temporary quarters, and many of them will untimately go to a RECAP facility at Princeton.  During the transitional period the volumes will all be available.  An arrangement has also been made to ship a number of the volumes to the University of Health and Allied Sciences in Dar-es Salaam, which will pay for the shipping.  So these journals will be put to good use in an underdeveloped country.

The committee has undertaken a couple of other initiatives at the behest of student members, particularly a search for more study space.  He said the library has done a good job of addressing the needs of Columbia’s growing population, but can never accommodate all of them.  The committee has worked with the registrar, who had been extremely forthcoming.  Additional study spaces have been opened up in classrooms and elsewhere.  He said the committee would be glad to hear from anyone about the shortages in study space.

Sen. Silverstein said the key issue about study space is that it has changed so much, with a great deal more study in groups of 5-8 people.  He said Sen. Sharyn O’Halloran has put together an inter-committee group to assess the institution’s need for spaces where students can plug in a computer to share information.  He said the Northwest Corner science building may address these needs in the sciences and engineering.  Group study not only works, enabling people to learn more, but it is in fact the way we live today, Sen. Silverstein said.

In the interim the registrar has made more classrooms available, and they should be open 24/7 at peak study periods.  Sen. Silverstein assumed the registrar would raise any budgetary needs associated with such additional space with the university. 

The renovation of the Medical Center library will result in a new student learning center covering two floors, and that means that something like 700 study seats will be lost.  In an environment with more than 1000 public health students, 150 medical students, 100 dental students, and many nursing students, the Medical Center will be severely underseated.

Sen. Silverstein asked Ms. Ptak-Danchak to describe the new Medical Center library.

Ms. Ptak-Danchak said medical research and education have changed, and the library has to adapt to remain at the cutting edge.  The library serves four schools, as well as occupational and physical therapy programs, and all of them have different ways of teaching and studying.

In the past, she said, libraries were all about stacks, and this remains true at Butler Library.  But it is less true elsewhere, especially in the science libraries and the medical library.  The plan at the Medical Center is to create a new education center, in a place where there is now no student union, no place to socialize and exchange ideas between classes.  The idea is to make the library the place where students want to come and spend their productive and creative time. 

Ms. Ptak-Danchak referred to some posters illustrating planned renovations that she had brought to the meeting.  A first phase of the renovation in 2005 on the lobby level provided a little coffee shop with spaces for students 24/7, and with computers and space for quiet study in the back.

During the upcoming renovation, a new stairway will connect down to the new library, which will take up three lower floors on the Hammer building.  The top level will include a high-quality study space, with lots of glass and natural light.

The next level down will include the new stacks.  The current library will be greatly reduced. There will be compact shelving, accommodating archives and special collections, plus stacks with some reading areas, some photocopiers, and CLIO terminals. There will be a copy center adjacent to the stacks for students. 

The renovation will include research rooms mainly for students and faculty of the School of Public Health, who need access to older materials. They will be able to request sizable deliveries from RECAP of 60-70 volumes, which they can store in lockers in the quiet research area here. 

There is also additional group study space, Ms. Ptak-Danchak said. The renovation is about creating a variety of spaces, to match the various learning needs of the students.  In the medical and nursing schools, as on Morningside, students like to work in groups, on a variety of kinds of projects, requiring individual carrels in some cases and small study spaces, fitting five to eight people, in others.  All the classrooms in this area will also be available 24/7 as study space if there are no classes going on there. 

Sen. Debra Wolgemuth (Ten., CUMC) said Ms. Ptak-Danchak had forgotten to mention the 360 or so Ph.D. students in the basic sciences at the Medical Center. Sen. Silverstein also mentioned the several hundred post-docs, whom he described as the real workforce of the institution.

Lisa Hogarty, chief operating officer at the Medical Center, said one great feature of the renovation project is that all five schools and other programs at the uptown campus have made high-quality space available for study purposes while the main library is closed for renovations.  Public Health has provided a spectacular room overlooking the Hudson River in the new Rosenfield building, and probably an additional event space on their tenth floor.  Bard Hall will be open to all schools so that students can study in the basement space there, in the towers where most of the student residences are.  All of these spaces will be equipped for wireless reception; most will have printers.  The ambience will be as good as in Hammer, if not a little better.  She said the project would start in the last week in April, and the new study spaces would be set up over that weekend.  The project is scheduled for completion by January 2010.

Sen. Silverstein mentioned the additional good news that 16 new printers would be installed in the Medical Center library in early May, replacing the inadquate equipment that is there now, and providing a maintenance contract requiring repairs every day if needed.  Ms. Hogarty has also arranged to enable students, starting in September, to use their copying allowances anywhere on the Morningside or uptown campuses.

Sen. Silverstein announced that, also starting in September, shuttle bus service between the uptown and downtown campuses will be increased from 7:30 pm to 12:30 am.

Finally, Sen. Silverstein said the Libraries Committee has met with Jose Maldonado, principal of the new Columbia Secondary School, to discuss ways in which Columbia libraries can support the school.  Mr. Maldonado and University Librarian James Neal will  meet to discuss this issue. 

Sen. Patrick Callahan (Stu., Public Health) offered some context for the changes now underway for students at the Medical Center.  He said there have been improvements for students, particularly since Ms. Hogarty’s arrival.  At the same time, however, important resources are being taken away, including the 700 library seats, while the student population continues to grow, particularly in Public Health.

The renovations also mean that access to many of the books being moved out will be lost, including many duplicates of books that classes urgently need.  Sen. Callahan mentioned the student in every class who goes to the library at the start of the term and checks out all the books that the class needs for the semester, so no one else has access to them.  The others have to resort to Amazon.com, where they furiously try to buy used copies.  In addition, there’s been no allocation for the cost of moving books back and forth from the storage centers.  Will users really be able to get these books as quickly as people hope?

Sen. Callahan asked senators to consider trade-offs between cafes and social space on the one hand, and books and study space on the other. He said students shouldn’t have to be making that choice.  He thought students, if they had to choose, would prefer library seats because they have nowhere else to study.  As for students who live on Morningside or elsewhere in the city, where will they study between classes?  Sitting in a café may not be the answer.

Sen. Callahan asked administrators to coordinate efforts not only among themselves, but also with students.  If the renovations are intended for students, administrators might want to ask them how they see the trade-offs.

Sen. Silverstein said the committee would focus on this issue for as long as the need exists.

There followed comments by Ms. Ptak-Danchak and Sen. Paul Thompson (Alum.) that were inaudible on the recording.

Sen. John Brust mentioned a valuable collection stored only in the collection of the New York Psychiatric Institute. Would these be available to the Medical Center community? Sen. Silverstein said the committee would look into this question.

Sen. Yu-lan Duggan (Stu., SIPA) offered an alternative view to Sen. Callahan’s.  She said the recent renovation at SIPA’s Lehman Library has provided students with wonderful group study space.  She said students love the new facilities, and noted that the trade-offs may differ for students at different schools.  At SIPA, a public policy school where students do many presentations, group study rooms accommodate large and small groups.  It’s highly productive to plug in a laptop, and have everyone see amd critique your presentation on a big screen. 

Sen. Silverstein recalled many years ago following the directive of a mentor, Dr. Payton Rouse, to go back in the Medical Center library stacks and read back issues of the Journal of Experimental Medicine, which Dr. Rouse edited.  Sen. Silverstein said these issues were full of important lessons and original problems that had been forgotten.  He took seriously the admonition about the gravity of the loss of the library stacks. Browsing the stacks is sometimes the most constructive thing to do, because you stumble on things that you weren’t looking for and that open your mind to remarkable insights.

How to replicate this process in the electronic age is a contemporary challenge, Sen. Silverstein said.  There are no straightforward solutions, and lots of tradeoffs.  He thanked Ms. Hogarty for her constructive responses to committee requests.

Executive Committee chairs’ report:  Sen. Duby explained that the president had to leave because of a meeting he could not reschedule. 

Sen. Duby said the Rules Committee had finally started its work. A roster would be provided to senators by email. 

Sen. Duby said the Senate office had started to organize Senate participation at Commencement.
Sen. Duby said he and student caucus co-chair Andrea Hauge (Stu., Bus.) had attended the trustees’ plenary meeting in March.  Trustee Michael Rothfeld, who chairs a subcommittee on student life, reported to the plenary on a meeting he had just held with a group of students, on subjects that closely parallel the work of the Senate student caucus on implications of last fall’s bias incidents.  Sen. Duby called for forwarding to the trustees the report that the student caucus was about to present.

Another agenda item at the trustee plenary was campus security.  The administration assured the trustees that the university is well prepared for potential security problems.   

Executive Committee co-chair Sharyn O’Halloran thanked Sens. Andrea Hauge and John Johnson for the work they had put into their report on the bias incidents. She said the External Relations Committee, which she chairs, had supported this work.

--Student caucus on implications of last fall’s bias incidents:  Sens. Johnson and Hauge presented the report, which had been distributed in the packet.

Sen. Johnson said the bias incidents of last fall had a major impact on the student community.  Students raised concerns about communications about the incidents, about the support services available for bias incidents generally, and about the larger issue (not necessarily directly related to the incidents) of the state of diversity initiatives on this campus, in the composition of the faculty and the curriculum. The student caucus broached these issues in a brief report to the October plenary, and has followed up on them in the report now before the Senate.  He expressed appreciation for the help of the External Relations Committee, and cited this joint effort as an example of collaboration between students and faculty. 

Sen. Hauge explained that three External Relations meetings provided occasions to pursue the report’s main issues, with the following guests:
1. James McShane, associate vice president for public safety, addressed communications, at a meeting that also included Susan Glancy, the president’s chief of staff.  
2. Deans Colombo, Nair, and Shollenberger of the CC/SEAS division of student affairs focused on resources and support services available in the wake of bias incidents.  
3. Vice Provost for Diversity Initiatives Geraldine Downey talked about her efforts to increase faculty diversity in the Arts and Sciences and the professional schools; at the same meeting Prof. Martha Howell, chair of a curriculum committee of the President’s Task Force on Undergraduate Education, discussed ways to revise the heavily Western focus of the core curriculum.

All the meetings were informative and productive, Sen. Hauge said.  The guests discussed important university practices and initiatives that are not widely known to the general student community.  Accordingly, many of the report’s recommendations call for wider communication of current efforts.

Sen. Hauge skipped the key findings of the report, and went straight to the recommendations.  She said that on each main issue, the report offers an affirmation of sound current policy, as well as a suggestion for improvement.

Sen. Johnson said the key recommendation of the report is to create a commission on the status of diversity at Columbia, which would be akin to the Commission on the Status of Women.  Such an effort would require close attention to avoiding duplication with that commission or with the vice provost for diversity. The enacting resolution for the diversity commission may be presented at the May plenary, Sen. Johnson said.

Sen. Hauge listed the report’s affirmations of current policies and its suggestions for improvements on its three main topics:  

1.  Communications.  The Department of Public Safety should continue its current collaboration with the Deans’ Working Group, a three-year-old panel that can communicate about issues that are not urgent for strictly security purposes, but are still important to the larger university.  That way communication from Public Safety is reserved for urgent notices, including those required by the federal Clery Act.  The report encourages this  distribution of communication functions, particularly for bias incidents, with an emphasis on the need for timely notice.

The suggestion for improving communications is to have the Deans’ Working Group review public safety response protocols, and ensure that all the schools comply with them.  The members of the Working Group should also coordinate bias incident response protocols with affiliate institutions like Teachers College, which are governed separately.

Sen. Johnson elaborated briefly on the Clery Act, the federal law requiring reporting of certain kinds of crimes and other incidents on or near campuses.  There has been a lot more publicity about these requirements in the wake of last year’s tragic multiple killings at Virginia Tech.  The Clery Act also provides for incidents definable as hate crimes.  So there is a domain of incidents that must be reported by Public Safety, and another set of incidents that the Deans’ Working Group should have protocols to communicate further about.

One of the key findings of the report was that there was a protocol in place for communicating about the incident of xenophobic graffiti in a SIPA bathroom, but that Public Safety was not notified by school authorities about the incident. 

2. Resources and support services. The report affirmed that the division of student affairs should continue to address targeted communities, including those deemed to be most vulnerable in the aftermath of a bias incident, but they should also insure that members of the wider community are consistently involved in long-term response planning for the campus and in short-term response planning wherever appropriate.

The report says the Office of Multicultural Affairs, run by Dean Ajay Nair, should continue to provide support services to the undergraduate community, with a continued focus on the cultivation of a polycultural (as opposed to a narrower) understanding of diversity, programming that proactively addresses and defuses inter- and intra-group conflict, and reliance on a varied, perhaps even  rotating group of student leaders to avoid the entrenchment of particular ideas or approaches. 

The report also offers the following suggestion for improvement: that the OMA should consider collaboration with graduate students and graduate identity organizations to increase interschool unity and to provide mentorship for undergraduates. 

Sen. Hauge hoped to follow up at the May plenary with the results of a series of surveys that student senators conducted on support services available at their own schools.

3. Faculty and curricular diversity. Sen. Johnson said one policy affirmation on diversity called for continued support for the work of the diversity provost, and for efforts proceeding in the curriculum subcommittee of the President’s Task Force on Undergraduate Education to reform the undergraduate curriculum.

Sen. Johnson said one recommendation is to encourage the presidential task force to provide an opportunity to hear its thinking by creating a Web page where students, faculty and alumni can provide input through a detailed questionnaire.  Along similar lines, Sen. Johnson said he and Sen. Hauge will hold the first of a series of discussion forums on April 21 with Vice Provost
Geraldine Downey and others involved in faculty diversity efforts.  

Sen. Hauge offered a final point, asking for consideration of disabilities as a diversity category for faculty.

Sen. Hauge mentioned the World Leaders Forum event on April 16, a panel discussion entitled “Emerging Leaders: Students Making an Impact,”  to be presented by the student caucus in conjunction with the president’s office.  She invited senators to attend.

In response to a question from Sen. Silverstein, Sen. Johnson said there are difficult decisions about whom to include in the panel of student leaders taking part in the forum in the coming week. But an effort had been made to strike a balance among schools and types of leadership.

Sen. Silverstein made comments about security issues, an effective support group for women in the sciences science, and the need to recognize dangerous or deranged behavior in one’s fellows.

Sen. Johnson interrupted to ask, in the limited time remaining, for comments bearing more directly on the specific recommendations of the report.

Sen. Savin requested that research officers be included on the proposed diversity commission.

Sen. Johnson thought the concerns Sen. Savin had raised earlier about making research officers eligible for diversity grants seemed directly appropriate to the work of a diversity commission. He also invited senators to help in planning the formation of a diversity commission.

—Housing Policy on the administration’s report on the relationship between rental income and capital expenditures:  Housing Policy co-chair Craig Schwalbe (Nonten., SW) presented a written report, which had been distributed at the door.  He said the committee has been discussing the administration’s effort to provide an explanation of the relationship between rental income and capital exenditures that had been requested in the Senate resolution of February 1. Sen. Schwalbe said he would report further at the May plenary.

New business 
Resolution  to Establish an M.A. in Regional Studies—Latin America and the Caribbean (GSAS, Institute of Latin-American Studies). Education Committee chair Letty Moss-Salentijn (Ten., SDOS) presented the resolution. Without discussion, the Senate approved it by voice vote without dissent. 

Resolution  to Establish a Joint D.D.S./M.A. Degree (College of Dental Medicine, Teachers College). Sen. Moss-Salentijn presented the resolution. Without discussion, the Senate approved it by voice vote without dissent. 

Sen. Duby adjourned the meeting shortly before 3 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

 

Tom Mathewson, Senate staff