The meeting was called to order by the Chair, Jerry Calton, at 3:05 p.m.
Present: Jerry Calton, April Komenaka, Lincoln Gotschalk, Philippe Binder, Barbara Heintz, Helen Rogers, Sabry Shehata, David Miller, Bill Mautz.
Student Member: Liko Puha
Ex Officio: Rose Tseng, Steve Hora, Margaret Haig
Guests: Barbara Leonard, Kalena Silva, Marcia Sakai, Larry Heintz, Audrey Furukawa
1. Minutes of the meeting of February 27, 2004, were reviewed and approved.
2. Review procedures for election of new members to Congress
Jerry Calton reminded the Congress that election of replacements for retiring members needed to be conducted by their respective units prior to the April 30th meeting. Barbara Heintz will establish a list of those members completing their two-year terms and notify units regarding the need to hold elections.
3. Report on WASC visit
April Komenaka reported that UH Hilo had been commended on many points by the WASC team which included:
Areas that continue to be of concern included:
David Miller made a motion, seconded by Lincoln Gotschalk, that the Congress express its gratitude to April Komenaka for coordinating UH Hilo’s preparation for the WASC site visit and for a job well done.
4. Update on status on general education reform initiative
April Komenaka reported that the General Education Committee was continuing its efforts and was not giving up. The Committee had received good ideas from the faculty forums, WASC team, and the Chair of the General Education Committee at UH Manoa that all pointed towards making the General Education Committee more inclusive by adding more faculty and also including students. The Committee also plans to work closely with the Retention Committee, the Advising Committee, and the College Senates. The goal is to develop widespread involvement and commitment.
5. Implications of UH System’s budgeting process and UH Hilo’s expanding
Jerry Calton reported on correspondence he had with David McClain, UH System, VCAA, regarding a statement McClain made at the March 19th ACCSFC meeting implying that the UH System was not obligated to support the UH Hilo Strategic Plan’s goal of enrollment growth. In McClain’s response to Calton’s inquiry, he noted that it was his understanding that “Ken Mortimer’s agreement to support the 5000 goal was contingent on additional state funds arriving for Hilo.” Since this funding had not materialized, McClain went on to state that the BOR later this year “….inevitably will address this incongruity…and possibly may conclude by again requesting more funding for UH Hilo to move it toward the 5000goal.” His last sentence reiterates that “the Mortimer condition mentioned above…which is really old news, and not binding on the current UH system, in my view”.
Jerry Calton noted that these remarks reinforce the Congress’ growing concern regarding enrollment growth without any increases in funding levels. Discussion was postponed because of time constraints in order to move the discussion on to the relationship between the governance bodies.
6 & 7. General Discussion on ways to improve communication/cooperation
between UH Hilo Congress and the College Senates and alternatives for
resolving jurisdiction issues
David Miller questioned whether the Congress Charter lacked guidelines or were we not following the guidelines that the Charter provided when we were addressing jurisdictional issues. Several members stated that the guidelines were vague in that the Charter provides only that, “The Congress is the policy making body of the University of Hawaii at Hilo for all academic matters of concern to more than one unit.”
Kalena Silva, speaking for the CHL, referred to Hiapo Perreira’s memo to Jerry Calton that stated, “The feeling in our College is that decision making is best made at the level closest to the faculty. That is the individual College Senates.” Kalena reiterated that this is an important issue to the CHL.
Marcia Sakai noted that the COB also wanted to maintain decision-making at the College Senate level.
Jerry Calton expressed the view that this issue was not in dispute but rather how to actually determine the procedures for jurisdictional issues.
David Miller proposed that the next step should be the formation of a representative body selected from Congress, the College Senates, VCAA, and the Chancellor to come up with procedures for how the governance bodies relate to each other.
Steve Hora suggested Congress should develop a resolution requesting that the Chancellor set up a task force to deal with these issues.
David Miller made a motion that was seconded by April Komenaka to request that the Chancellor appoint a task force made up of representatives from the Congress, the four College Senates, the chief academic officer of each of the degree granting colleges, and the Chancellor or her designee to design and work out a plan of responsibility for each of the governance bodies. Congress will forward the names of the faculty representatives recommended by the respective governance bodies to the Chancellor. Furthermore, the Congress requests that the task force develop a timeline that allows for their recommendations to be received by May 15, 2004.
Vote: 8 yes, 0 no, 1 abst.
The Chair moved the discussion to ideas for improving communication between the College Senates, Graduate Council, and Congress.
Larry Heintz supported the exchange of agendas, minutes, committee reports, etc. between the governance bodies and April Komenaka noted that websites made that a simple process.
Liko Puha volunteered to develop the e-mail distribution lists of members of the College Senates and Congress to facilitate the sharing of information. Liko and Barbara Heintz will set this up.
Larry Heintz spoke for Senate Chairs being voting members of Congress.
April Komenaka concurred that this would strengthen the Congress by having the Senate Chairs’ input from the beginning.
Steve Hora noted the problem of representation and that by adding the Senate Chairs, it would then be out of balance for CAS.
Bill Mautz responded that this should not be a major concern because the Congress is currently dominated by CAS and would continue to be so even with the addition of the Senate Chairs.
Liko Puha reminded the Congress that in the past, a student representative from each of the Colleges was a voting member rather than the one voting member that is currently provided by the Charter. He would appreciate having Congress reconsider and returning to the original arrangement.
Margaret Haig noted that representation of other non-included groups might need to be considered.
Bill Mautz brought up the point that the Congress is the faculty governance body not a university- wide body.
David Miller suggested looking at the advantages of having a Congress made up of just the Chairs of the College Senates.
Larry Heintz raised reservations about going from one extreme of no Senate representation to the other extreme of having only the Chairs.
Bill Mautz noted that a Congress of just Chairs would be too small to generate the ideas that could come from a larger forum. The small Colleges could, especially, benefit from the input of the larger group.
Steve Hora noted that when he was at the University of Oregon, the entire faculty often met to debate and decide major academic issues.
April Komenaka suggested that we add the four College Senate chairs to Congress but that they would not automatically be on the executive committee. When Congress is convened in the fall, election of Congress officers and chairs of standing committees, (which collectively constitutes the executive committee) would proceed as already established. There was a measure of consensus in the discussion of this idea.
8. Possible Changes to the Congress Charter
David Miller proposed that the Executive Committee look over the Congress Charter to see if we need other changes to the Charter in addition to adding as members, the four Senate Chairs. The first reading for the amendments would then be at the April 30th
Larry Heintz suggested that if there was agreement, an amendment be put forward at this meeting to add the four Senate Chairs to the membership of the Congress so that the first reading could take place at this time.
Liko Puha cautioned that perhaps such an important step should be considered more carefully.
April Komenaka moved and Bill Mautz seconded that the Senate Chairs of CAS, CHL, COB, and CAFNRM be made voting members of the UH Hilo Faculty Congress.
Vote: 8 yes, 0 no
The second reading as required by the Congress Charter will take place at the meeting of
Congress on May 30, 2004.