August 31, 2015

Aug 31 2015
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Meeting Minutes




Call to Order


August 31, 2015


The regular meeting of the Academic Senate, held on August 31, 2015, was called to order at 3:04 p.m. by Bill Johnson, Senate President. The meeting was held in CTIHB 109.


Present: Ole Fischer, Sarah Hinners, Lyda Bigelow, Jeff Nielsen, Todd Zenger, Olga Baker, Yongmei Ni, Orly Alter, A.K. Balaji, Sudeep Kanugo, Xiaoyue Liu, Denny Berry, Ning Lu, Joe Marotta, Steve Roens, Lien Fan Shen, Kelly Bricker, Stacy Manwaring, Julie Metos, Les Podlog, Reva Rauk, Lorie Gage Richards, James Anderson, Karin Baumgartner, Maria Dobozy, Nadja Durbach, Disa Gambera, Avery Holton, Lex Newman, Adrian Palmer, Robin Craig, David Hill, Terry Kogan, John Bramble, Alicia Brillon, Luke Leither, Jill Moriearty, Jennifer Garvin, Antoinette Laskey, William Lowrance, Nicole Mihalopoulos, Maureen A. Murtaugh, Ravi Ranjan, Debra Simmons, Frederick Strathmann, Marjorie Chan, David Dinter, Paul Jewell, Margaret Clayton, Lynn Hollister, Jindrich Kopecek, Linda Tyler, Randy Dryer, Peter Alfeld, Yekaterina Epshteyn, David Goldenberg, Dmytro Pesin, Thomas Richmond, Michael Shapiro, David Temme, Andrejs Treibergs, Nilufer Cagatay, Thomas Cova, Lori Kowaleski-Jones, Baodong Liu, Duncan Metcalfe, Lina Svedin, Norman Waitzman, Jason Castillo, Patrick Panos, Mary Beth Vogel-Ferguson, Marley Arango, Chris Bell, Cindy Chen, Ambra Jackson, Aubrey Keaney, Andy Moyle, John Muhs, John Peterson, Christina Ripley, Ashlee Ruff, Hannah Stinson, Gaby Zumaeta


Absent: Jeff Coles, Xiao Fang, Melissa Lewis, Gary Lowder, Leticia Alvarez, Janiece Pompa, Robert Hitchcock, Meredith Metzger, Edward M. Trujillo, Michael Cottle, Anne Jamison, Michelle Hofmann, Katherine Kendall, John T. Langell, Jody Rosenblatt, Robert A. Stephenson, Scott T. Youngquist, Mollie Cummins, Andrea Bild, Jordan Gerton, Joel Miller, John Sperry, Joan Brenner-Coltrain, Frances Friedrich, Wade Cole, Daniel Barber, Douglas Chan, Devin Daniels, Conrad Dean, Jaycee Lynn Christensen, Julie Olaf, Amy Simonsen


Ex-Officio: Stephen Alder, Carrie Byington, Robert Flores, Harriet Hopf, William Johnson, Paul A. Mogren, Xan Johnson, David W. Pershing, Ruth V. Watkins, Amy Wildermuth


Excused with Proxy: Karen Giesker for Christina Porucznik, Steven Sternfeld for Adrian Palmer, Christine Jones for Chrisoula Andreou, Joanna Ganning for Brenda Scheer


Excused: Vivian S. Lee


Others: David Kieda, Chris Hill, Robert Payne, Bill Hesterly, Brad Poss, Leslie Frances, Jackie Morrison, Bob Kesler


Request for New Business

No new business




Consent Calendar

The annual appointments of the Senate Policy Liaison and Parliamentarian received approval on a motion by Randy Dryer and seconded by Jill Moriearty. The motion passed unanimously.


The resignations, retirements, and faculty and administrator appointments dated August 31, 2015 received approval to forward to the Board of Trustees without objection.


Executive Committee Report

Xan Johnson, Senate President-elect, gave an update on the Executive Committee meetings over the summer. The Executive Committee met twice over the summer; all items discussed in those meetings are on the agenda now other than the Seven-Year Accreditation Report, which will be discussed briefly in today’s meeting and in depth in the October Senate meeting. Six ad hoc committees have been created, and most standing committee chairs have been ratified.


Report from Administration

President David Pershing and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Ruth Watkins gave an update on the administration’s activities. Dave has traveled around the state solidifying legislative connections. He also mentioned that the parking garages are now open and there are 1000 more spaces on campus than there were last year. Ruth gave an update on the Seven-Year Accreditation Report. The accreditors will be visiting the University in late October. Ruth also mentioned that she conducted several campus dialogues in which she interacted with students, faculty, and staff and discussed the main accreditation issues. There was also a 25 to 30 person committee that worked on the report for the past year.


Report from ASUU

Ambra Jackson, ASUU President, gave an update on the student body’s activities. The most recent initiative that the ASUU administration is undertaking is in coalition with the PAC-12 conference and is intended to prevent sexual assault and promote mental health on college campuses.


Report from Athletics

Chris Hill, Athletics Director, gave a presentation on the impact of athletics at the University of Utah. He stated that he is working towards transparency by collaborating with the Athletics Advisory Council, which Harriet Hopf has extensive experience with, and the President’s Advisory Council, run by Ruth Watkins. Chris outlined the four goals of the Athletics Department: Academics, Compliance, Behavior, and Transparency. To help the academic side of athletics, Chris is working with Karen Paisley (the University’s Faculty Athletics Representative) and Assoc. V.P. Martha Bradley to ensure student success. For NCAA compliance purposes, Chris works with Robert Payne of the Office of General Counsel and then reports to the President. For behavior issues, Chris mentioned that there is a “well-being program” where athletes can approach an ombudsman person if they do not feel comfortable talking to their coaches about issues. For student behavior issues, the Athletics Department will work with Lori McDonald, Dean of Students.


There was a discussion about the Athletic Department’s budget in which it was mentioned that the department does not make a profit. Only twenty schools in the nation are profitable, and the University is not working towards a profit in athletics. Chris also mentioned that student fees primarily help fund less-attended sports. The Athletics Department does not advocate for paid student athletes on campus, and instead one of their biggest priorities is getting student athletes to graduate with the degree they want. The department also has a yearly Gender Equity Study, which will be shared with the Senate.


Notice of Intent

No Items of Intent



Dave Kieda, the Dean of the Graduate School, gave an update on the Seven-Year Accreditation Report. He stated that the mission statement is closely tied to the report. He also mentioned that the Accreditation Report has been a collaborative effort with Marti Bradley and Ruth Watkins. The U’s retention rates have risen to 89%, and the six-year graduation rates have increased to 62%. If anyone has comments or questions about the Report, they can send their comments to Dave and he will have a response back by the October Senate meeting.


Debate Calendar

Robert Payne presented the Interim Rule 7-006 about Conflicts of Interest in human subject research. He stated that there is no federal law that requires such a policy, but it is required for the University’s accreditors. Jeff stated that in the context of research, the University of Utah would have a conflict of interest if there was an institutional financial interest in the subject of study or if certain senior leaders at the University had external financial interests. Anyone who is a department chair, or holds a higher position, will be reviewed for conflicts of interest under this policy, along with anyone who donates $50,000 or more to the University. Health Sciences will be the most dramatically affected area of campus under the policy. As described in the Note included with today’s agenda materials, circumstances made it necessary for President Pershing to enact the regulation as an Interim Rule, and the proposal presented for debate today is to adopt the plan of action recommended by the Senate Executive Committee to “Approve having this regulation remain in place in its status as an Interim Rule, for up to one year, with the provision that a proposal for a permanent replacement be brought forward for Senate action within a year (i.e., before or during fall semester 2016).”   Motion was made by Debra Simmons to approve that plan of action. Motion was seconded by Lorie Richards. Motion passed unanimously.


Bill Hesterly and Bob Kesler presented a proposal for a dual degrees program – Masters of Business Administration and Masters of Entertainment Arts and Engineering. They mentioned that their students have requested such a program, and the proposal would allow students to finish both degrees in 3 years instead of 4. In addition, no such program exists in the nation, so the University would be at the forefront with such a program. The importance of such a program is also exemplified in the fact that there is a shift in how companies operate as they are developing, marketing, and distributing all aspects of production on their own and this degree program would help assimilate students into such positions. There is also a lot of support from the U’s Asia campus. Motion was made by Disa Gambera to approve the proposal and forward it to the Board of Trustees. Motion was seconded by Jill Moriearty. Motion passed unanimously.


Bill Hesterly presented a proposal for a dual degrees program– Masters of Business Administration and Doctor of Medicine. He mentioned that this is a student-requested initiative as there is a high demand for business savvy in medical school. Such programs are also scarce in the western United States and would benefit students throughout the region. Concerns were raised about whether students in such a program would lose their fourth year of clinical rotations. Bill stated that the clinical rotations would be pushed back to the fifth year of school, as the fourth year would be spent taking business courses with the David Eccles School of Business. Motion was made and seconded to approve the proposal and forward it to the Board of Trustees.  Motion passed unanimously.


Jackie Morrison and Leslie Francis of the College of Law presented a proposal for a Center for Law and Biomedical Sciences.  The Center received provisional approval three years ago and is now being presented for approval for permanent status. It serves to create a space where the law can be discussed in the context of biomedical sciences. The program had 18 funded student-fellows last year. Motion was made by Peter Jensen to approve the proposal and forward to the Board of Trustees. Motion was seconded by Randy Dryer. Motion passed unanimously.




The minutes of the Academic Senate meeting on May 4, 2015, were approved on a motion by Robin Craig, and a second by Antoinette Laskey. Motion passed unanimously.


Senate President Bill Johnson discussed the leadership for this year’s Senate Standing Committees, and the establishment, membership and leadership of a set of Ad hoc Committees for the year. He briefly went over the Ad hoc Committees on Faculty Review of Administration, chaired by Caren Frost; Safety of Minors, chaired by Mary Burbank; Responsible Investment, chaired by Mike Cooper; and Re-investment Dialogue, chaired by Joan Gregory. Motion made by Randy Dryer to ratify and approve each committee and their respective chairs. Motion was seconded by Jill Moriearty. Motion passed unanimously.


Information and Recommendations Calendar

The following items were presented for the information and recommendations of the Academic Senate:

  • Revised Policy 3-052 on institutional debt
  • Graduate Council Review of the Department of Film and Media Arts
  • Graduate Council Review of the Middle East Studies Program
  • Graduate Council Review of the Division of Nutrition
  • Graduate Council Review of the Department of Mathematics
  • University Teaching Committee Final Report 2014-2015

No questions, concerns, or recommendations were raised for any of these items.



Meeting adjourned at 4:22 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,

Wogai Mohmand