University Senate                                                                               

Proposed: December 13, 2012            




President Lee Bollinger, the chairman, called the Senate to order shortly after 1:15 pm in 104 Jerome Greene. Forty-nine of 95 senators were present.

Adoption of the agenda. Executive Committee chair Sharyn O’Halloran (Ten., SIPA) moved to delete the Resolution to Amend the Senate Elections Code, which she said needed more work.  The agenda was adopted as amended.

President’s remarks.  The president offered the following updates:
--He had just returned from a trip to Asia. He said there had been successful meetings with alumni. The Beijing Global Center has moved to a new space, and has a promising new director, Joan Kaufman, who is eager to help the University build its reputation in Asia.   

--The president had announced the day before that EVP for Arts and Sciences Nicholas Dirks is leaving to become chancellor of the University of California at Berkeley. The president thanked EVP Dirks for his service to Columbia.  A search for his successor will be announced soon, to go with current searches for new deans of Dental Medicine, Journalism, and SEAS. The president and Provost Coatsworth will discuss next steps with the Planning and Policy Committee of the A&S Faculty, and with the schools that comprise the Arts and Sciences.

New business.
            --Resolution to Honor the Memory of Jacques Barzun. The president said anyone who has been in academic life—regardless of age—has been influenced by Jacques Barzun.  He said the resolution offered a moment for everyone in the Senate to celebrate the lives they’ve been allowed to lead. He then read the full resolution aloud. It was adopted by voice vote.    

Executive Committee chair’s remarks.
Standing Manhattanville subcommittee. Sen. O’Halloran said plans are under way to establish a permanent Senate panel on Manhattanville. The new group, a subcommittee of the standing Campus Planning and Physical Development (CPPD) Committee, will carry on the work of the ad hoc Campus Planning Task Force, which produced its last report in 2010.

CPPD chair Ronald Breslow (Ten., A&S/NS) said Manhattanville is critical to Columbia’s future, and input from a range of constituencies is essential, to make sure no serious mistakes are made. He understood that the president supported the formation of this subcommittee.

The president said he is in favor of all the discussion the University can possibly have.

            Global Initiatives Task Force. The task force hoped to have a draft report by December. 

            Provost’s Academic Leadership Institute. Sen. O’Halloran thanked the provost for a two-day workshop that she described as a great success.

Provost Coatsworth said participants included 20 department chairs and directors of institutes in the Arts and Sciences, and a dozen other vice deans, division chairs, and other academics in administrative roles. The provost learned from the event that Columbia doesn’t do a good job of enabling academic administrators to share solutions to everyday problems. He said participants got a lot out of the session, which will be repeated with an eye to the needs of new deans. 

Online learning. Sen. O’Halloran said a Senate task force is focusing on three aspects of online learning: audience, pedagogy, and technology.  Sree Sreenivasan, the new digital assets officer based in the provost’s office, is a member of the task force.

            Smoking policy. A smoking task force presented the results of its review of the implementation of the current policy in September, and has now prepared a tentative timeline for remaining deliberations: a set of recommendations to be presented at a town hall meeting in late January; a proposal to be presented to the Senate on February 1, and a vote on March 1.  

            Email privileges for senators.  Prompted by Sen. O’Halloran, the secretary offered an update on the implementation of the Senate resolution, adopted in April, to authorize senators to communicate with their constituents in mass emails. CUIT has provided student senators from Columbia College and SEAS (the undergraduate and graduate divisions) with lists of their constituents, and he understood that a list for SIPA would be ready later on the present afternoon. 
Other student lists were expected before the end of the semester.

            Report on the ARC accounting system in December.  EVP for Finance Anne Sullivan was unable to report at the present meeting, but called attention in a recent message to the Senate to a website showing a list of complaints that her office is now addressing. She also provided her email address for senators with questions, and will report to the Senate on December 13. 

Senate staff publications. The secretary announced recent publications by the Senate staff:  Justine Blau has published a memoir of her childhood called Scattered;Jessica Raimi has published a short piece, “Ballet School,” in the Antioch Review.

Adoption of the minutes of October 19. Parliamentarian Howard Jacobson asked if the minutes of October 19 had been adopted. There was some uncertainty.

Sen. O’Halloran asked senators to point out any corrections to the secretary.

Other business. Sen. James Neal, University Librarian, announced that the Libraries had completed a major reorganization of the central files in the University Archives. He said the result is a remarkable record, from the vantage point of the president’s office and the Trustees, documenting the history not only of Columbia but also of higher education and the research university. The collection is now open, and scholars are from all over the country are using it. 
Sen. Neal added that the Libraries are also working with the University Senate office to move the essential contents of Senate files to the University Archives, taking care of the paper records, but also developing an electronic records program for the Senate.

Sen. O’Halloran thanked Sen. Neal for this work.

There being no further business, the president adjourned the meeting shortly after 1:30 pm.

Respectfully submitted,


Tom Mathewson, Senate secretary