February 3, 2014

Feb 03 2014
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Meeting Minutes


February 3, 2014


Call to Order

The regular meeting of the Academic Senate, held on February 3, 2014, was called to order at 3:03 p.m. by Allyson Mower, Senate President. The meeting was held in room 1750 Health Sciences Education Building.


Present: David Ailion, McKay Allred, Orly Alter, A.K. Balaji, Keith Bartholomew, Tim Benvegnu, Michael Blomgren, Kate Canas, Tully Cathey, Thomas Cheatham, Marcus Chen, Mary Ann Christison, Robin Craig, Sierra Debenham, Kevin DeLuca, Justin Diggle, David Dinter, Maria Dobozy, Randy Dryer, Florence Fernandez, Ole Fischer, Michael Free, Frances Friedrich, Caren Frost, Sabine Fuhrmann, Disa Gambera, Michael Gardner, Luke Garrott, Jennifer Garvin, William Gershan, Stephen Goldsmith, Franz Goller, Joan Gregory, Gary Grikscheit, Thad Hall, Glen Hanson, Michael Harris, Mary Elizabeth Hartnett, Leanne Hawken, Rachel Hayes-Harb, Tom Henderson, David Hill, Robert Hitchcock, Michelle Hofmann, Lynn Hollister, Jared Hurdman, Thunder Jalili, Anne Jamison, Brandon Jennings, Peter  Jensen, Christian Johnson, William Johnson,  Xan Johnson, Bradley Katz, Evert Lawton, Uri Loewenstein, John Longino, Gary Lowder, William Lowrance, Ross Marabella, Erminia Martinez, Theresa Martinez, Sandra McIntryre, Ashley McMullin, Heather Melton, Duncan Metcalfe, Meredith Metzger, Joel Miller, Jill Moriearty, Alfred Mowdood, A. Chris Nelson, Sam Ortiz, Patrick Panos, Janiece Pompa, Christina Porucznik, Matthew Potolsky, M. Pollie Price, Bruce  Quaglia, Mariana Ramiro, Lorie Richards, Steve Roens, Gerald Root, Gary Rose, Jody Rosenblatt, Clough Shelton, Debra Simmons, Gregory Smoak, David Stevenson, David Temme,

Li Wang, Rachel Wootton, Joanne Yaffe


Absent: Jordan Gerton, Michael Hawkins, Amy Johnas, Lori Kowaleski-Jones, Raina Mahanes, Jannah Mather, Dragan Milicic, Patricia Murphy, Ingrid Nygaard, Marlene Plumlee, Reva Rauk

Stephanie Richardson, Paul Shami, John Paul Soares, Taylor Thurman, Jingyi Zhu


Excused: Harriet Hopf, Vivian Lee


Ex-officio: Steve Alder, Robert Flores, Robert Fujinami, Paul Mogren, Allyson Mower, David Pershing, Ruth Watkins, Amy Wildermuth


Excused with Proxy:  Chrisoula Andreou (Tom Stillinger)


Others: Jeff Herring


Approval of Minutes

The minutes of the Academic Senate meeting on January 6, 2014, received no objections.


Request for New Business

Training for BoardDocs will be held at the March Academic Senate meeting.



Consent Calendar

The resignations retirements, and faculty and administrator appointments dated February 3, 2014, received no objections and will be forward to the Board of Trustees.


Executive Committee Report

Steve Alder, Academic Senate President-elect, provided a summary of the Executive Committee meeting held January 13, 2014.


Report from Administration

President David Pershing spoke to the Academic Senate regarding the activities at the Legislative session. President Pershing presented the base budget for the University on Friday, January 31st. The overall budget for the University of Utah is 3.3 billion dollars, 7.8% coming from the State of Utah. The percentage from the State of Utah covers salaries for the University.


The University of Utah retention rates for the undergraduate students from freshman year to sophomore year is in the top half of the PAC 12 rankings. The four-year graduation rates for the University of Utah are not as high, showing at 60%. The biggest reason for this lower rate is the majority of the U’s students are working adults. The U is working on ways to help these students graduate faster. The biggest statistics worry from the Fall 2014 applicants the administration has seen was 1200 students who didn’t enroll at the U or any other school. The U is working on a new scholarship campaign that will help these students who did not enroll because of financial situations.


The Annual Founders Day banquet will be held on Thursday, Feb. 20, at the Little America Hotel.


Report from ASUU

Sam Ortiz, ASUU President spoke to the Academic Senate regarding the PAC 12 student leaders’ conference. The conference was held at the University of Utah and 10 schools participated. One of the major items that were discussed during the conference was campus climate.


ASUU primary elections will begin February 10th. The Senior class debate will be held on February 11th at 12pm in the Union. The President and Vice President Debate will be held on February 12th at 6:30 in the Heritage Center.


Notice of Intent

No Items on Notice of Intent


Debate Calendar

The proposal for a new Graduate Certificate in Big Data was presented by Jeff Phillips. The certificate will consist of 15 credits made up from 5 classes: Data Mining, Machine Learning, Database Systems, Visualization, and Advanced Algorithms. The program would serve graduate students from Biomedical Informatics, Electrical and Computing Engineering and Math. The classes for this certificate already exist and a similar track in a MS or PHD Computing is offered in Data. This certificate program may serve as a feeder program into the related MS program. The Big Data Certificate and its students will be administered by the Data track faculty. There was extensive discussion about a need to assure that ethical issues surrounding uses of big data are adequately addressed within the educational program. Professor Phillips explained that all of the core courses include lectures which discuss ethical issues associated with data management and analysis. The motion to approve and forward to the Board of Trustees was made by Thad Hall and seconded by Joanne Yaffe. Motion passed with three abstentions.


Information Calendar

The SAFE Campaign Update scheduled for today will be rescheduled to be presented to the Academic Senate in May.



Meeting adjourned at 3:36 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,

Shawnee Worsley