Present: Paul Dassonville, Miriam Deutsch, Jennifer Freyd, Reza Rejaie, Jane Cramer, John Davidson, Michael Dreiling, William Harbaugh, Bruce McGough, Dianne Dugaw, Deborah Healey, Colin Koopman, Gordon Sayre, Ron Lovinger, Richard Margerum, Charles Lachman, Deborah Olson, Debra Merskin, Victoria Mitchell, Edward Teague, Robin Clement, Jennifer Ellis, Robert Kyr, David Espinoza, Lisa Raleigh, Andrew Lubash, John Ahlen, Theodora Ko Thompson, Jimmy Murray, Mike Strain
Absent: Jun Li, Ken Prehoda, Randy Sullivan, Geraldine Poizat-Newcomb, Laura Leete, Marilyn Nippold, Jerry Rosiek, Alexandre Dossin, Debra Thurman, Abel Cerros, Samantha Cohen, Quin Haaga, Kate Klosno
Excused: Weiyong He, Michael Price, Regina Psaki, Donna Shaw, Mary Ann Hyatt
Note: Due to technical issues, the beginning of the December 10th 2014 meeting was not recorded. Consequently, the minutes begin partway through Senate President Kyr’s opening remarks.
Senate President Robert Kyr (Music) noted that the controversial Board of Trustees Resolution (Adoption of a Policy on University Policies) had been postponed. He stated that this postponement was the result of Interim President Coltrane negotiating with the Board in the interest of the faculty and shared governance. He added that a result of this postponement was a new, more collaborative process for the revision of University policies.
3. STATE OF THE UNIVERSITY
3.1 Announcement and Updates: Robert Kyr, Senate President
Senate President Kyr informed the Senate that he would read a statement from Interim President Coltrane (who was unable to attend the meeting) regarding the Policy Review Process proposal. President Coltrane’s statement has been reproduced in its entirety below:
Colleagues, the University of Oregon lived up to its reputation as a place of lively debate and passionate discourse this week in our discussion of a policies proposal before the UO Board of Trustees. I have heard your concerns and, as President, have carried your voice forward to our Board of Trustees. The Board graciously responded by postponing consideration of the policies proposal at the December meeting, but charged us to work expeditiously toward a revised process that allows the University to review policy efficiently and collaboratively. The Board would like to see a new resolution in time for consideration at its March meetings.
As many of you may know, the University Senate leadership expressed concern about a proposal before the UO Board of Trustees to create a more streamlined process for reviewing the 700-plus policies the UO inherited from the State during our governance transition and for policy development going forward. The Board has a fiduciary responsibility to ensure that all UO policies—existing, inherited, and developed in the future—are organized and managed efficiently and effectively. Our current process is not efficient, and did not envision the inheritance of many hundreds of additional policies to review, revise, or repeal in an abbreviated timeframe. It also doesn't contemplate the new Institutional Board, which took effect just this summer.
Provost Bronet, members of the leadership team, and I understand the concerns presented. We acknowledge that these proposed changes could have been communicated better, and that the Senate's leadership could have been more involved sooner in the process. More importantly, we commit to doing better in the future.
We now have a good opportunity to demonstrate to each other, and to our Board, that we can move forward together. I hope we can put the distrust and negative assumptions behind us, and continue to work through this transition in a way that elevates our University and our shared commitment to academic excellence. As a starting point, I offer a few details of my proposed process below and look forward to working with the Senate and others to begin this important work. The proposed process honors the constitution and our collective commitment to shared governance by: 1) Creating a standing position on the Policy Advisory Council for the Senate President; 2) Ensuring that every new or revised University policy proposal generated by the Administration shall be sent to the Senate President (University Constitution 184.108.40.206) early in the process, creating greater efficiencies; 3) Enabling the Senate President, as a PAC member, to flag all policies that involve “academic matters as commonly understood in higher education” for Senate consideration through Senate-defined processes; 4) Requiring the Senate President, during final PAC review, to verify that Senate procedures were followed and Senate approval on such academic matters was achieved before moving forward for action; and 5) Providing a forum for the President to receive and consider new or revised “policy proposals approved by the University Senate within 60 days” as defined in the UO Constitution, Section 220.127.116.11.
In summary, the statutory faculty—through the Senate—will continue to serve as our policy leaders for all academic policy leaders for all academic policies. My sincerest hope is that these changes strengthen our faculty's voice in policy-making by increasing opportunity for faculty to influence policy development—both academic and non-academic—through participation in the PAC, as subject matter experts, and in an open public comment period. A visual depiction of these process changes is available here [a link to the document has been provided], and I’m happy to receive any questions or concerns.
Senate President Kyr stated that there would be many opportunities to engage with the President going forward. He expressed his gratitude for the President exercising his authority, advocating for the faculty, and advocating for shared governance.
4. NEW BUSINESS
4.1 Motion (Resolution): Resolution Affirming the University of Oregon Constitution; Michael Dreiling (Sociology), Senator & Senate Executive Committee
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would consider a Resolution Affirming the University of Oregon Constitution, written by Senator Michael Dreiling and the Senate Executive Committee. Senator Dreiling gave the motion to the Senate, and it received a second. Senate President Kyr proceeded to read the motion, which he noted had been revised immediately prior to the meeting. He then invited Senator Dreiling to provide background.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) stated that the University community had recently been made aware of a Board resolution that would supersede all existing policies, and would also repeal policies as they existed in the current University of Oregon Policy Library. He explained that this resolution was developed without consultation of the University Senate, the Senate President, or the faculty. He stated that this had mobilized the faculty, the Senate, and Senate Executive Committee to collaborate to quickly analyze the implications of the resolution, to issue a call to postpone the resolution, and to begin a process of collaboration as called for by the University of Oregon Constitution, Section 7. He stated that President Coltrane had consulted with the Board of Trustees, and that the Board of Trustees had withdrawn the resolution and called for consultation moving forward. He stated that the motion was intended to honor and celebrate the transition towards collaboration, while also recognizing that the original Board resolution was concerning.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for comments and recognized Senator Margerum.
Senator Rich Margerum (Planning, Public Policy, & Management) indicated that he wanted to emphasize Section 2.3 of the motion. He noted that the Administration had flagged at least 100 policies as being directly relevant to the academic matters of the University, and that these needed to be addressed. He stated that this would require a lot of committee work, extra meetings, and that it could result in other things getting bumped from the Senate agenda. He asserted that it was important for the Senate to work through the policies efficiently.
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate was aware that extra work would be required, and added that twice the normal number of meetings had been scheduled to accommodate this. He then recognized Moshe Immerman.
Moshe Immerman asked that the Senate be mindful of the context of their work. He stated that the Senate needed to be wary of “the rise of unaccountable power,” and that the vision of the founding mothers and fathers required keeping freedom of thought at the center of one's actions. He shared that he had attended a recent meeting of the Board of Trustees, and commented that he had observed some positive things, but also a lot of elitism and shallow thought. He asked those present to remember their past so as to “prevent the rise of a cannibal power,” ensure maximum transparency, and maximize collaborative vision and wisdom.
Senate President Kyr thanked Mr. Immerman for his remarks. He asked the speakers to keep their comments under two minutes in order to ensure that there would be enough time to cover the remaining items on the agenda. He also requested that people try to see the best in each other, and encouraged everyone to work from their best selves through respectful dialogue. He then recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor John Bonine (Law) suggested that a member of General Counsel begin to attend the Senate meetings, explaining that the new policy put General Counsel in a critical role. He asked those present to look at the Request to Postpone; he noted that it referenced various national organizations, and that it was important for everyone to read it. He asked how many Senators were present, with the implication that the current numbers were insufficient.
Senate President Kyr stated that more than half of the Senate was present.
Professor Bonine stated that he wanted to start a process by which Senate seats were declared vacant when people did not attend meetings after some period of time. He stated that the Senate was being given the responsibility to work with the Administration, and that if the Senate wanted to “step up to the plate,” the Senators had to be present. He also asked people to volunteer for the working groups that were being set up. He asserted that not participating would result in another crisis.
An unidentified speaker asked if people other than Senators could participate.
Professor Bonine stated that people did not have to be Senators to participate. As a final comment, he mentioned that the meeting of the Executive Committee on the Monday prior to the Senate meeting had been very important. He noted that Helena Schlegel had been confirmed as the student representative of the Board at this meeting.
Senate President Kyr reminded those in attendance that Helena Schlegel had been a Senator during the previous year. He stated that her service as a Senator was exemplary, and that he was sure that she would do well on the Board. He took a moment to recognize Professor Bonine and Professor Forell for their work on the revisions to the Student Conduct Code, among other things.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Ellis.
Senator Jennifer Ellis (Finance) suggested that a sign-up sheet for the working groups be sent around while enthusiasm was high.
Senate President Kyr asked Senate Executive Logistics Coordinator, Dan Daly, to prepare sheets and send them around. He asked those who were interested to supply their name, contact information, and area of expertise or interest. He then recognized Professor Mann.
Professor Bonnie Mann (Department Head, Philosophy) asked that the members of the GTFF be recognized for their efforts during the strike. She reminded those present about the dispute between the faculty and the Administration over grading policies during the strike, and urged the Senate to be careful and to “not be too happy too fast.”
Senate President Kyr noted that the Senate would be receiving an update from the Academic Integrity Task Force after finishing with the present business. He stated that he appreciated Professor Mann’s comments, and that they would be further discussed after the update. With that in mind, he asked those present to remain focused on discussing the motion. He recognized Senator Freyd.
Senator Jennifer Freyd (Psychology) asserted that the motion was a wake-up call for the Senate. She stated that it emphasized how deeply important shared governance was to the future of the University. She added that it was also important that the faculty continue to have primary responsibility for academic matters. She stated that it was important to consider the policies that the Senate was required to review, and also to be vigilant for every other decision being made that was fundamentally academic. For example, she shared her observation that decisions had been made regarding cluster hires, and that the faculty had not had a proper role in these decisions. She also shared her belief that preventing sexual violence was part of the academic mission, and that decisions were being made about how reform would proceed on campus without proper inclusion of the faculty.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dreiling.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) thanked Professor Mann for her comments and stated that he shared her feelings. He asserted that it was important for stakeholders at a university to be heard. He added that the GTFF had demonstrated this. He stated that he was looking forward to reaffirming shared governance.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senior Instructor of Business, Ron Bramhall, whose comment was inaudible. Senate President Kyr responded to the comment by stating that the Senate was very realistic about the amount of work that the Senate needed to do, and that it was ready to follow through. He then recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor Bonine stated that the word "Senate" was not clearly included everywhere that it was needed in the revised draft of the Policy Review Process. He added that it was there implicitly, but that it needed to be explicit.
Senate President Kyr reminded the body that the Policy Review Process was still a draft, and that there was still important work to be done on it. He stated that updates would be forthcoming. He recognized an unidentified speaker.
The unidentified speaker suggested that attendees of the meeting silence their cellphones.
Senate President Kyr asked those present to silence their cellphones. He then called for a vote on the motion, which carried. Senate President Kyr announced that he would be making a standing report to the Board during which he would present the motion. He added that the standing report of the Senate President would now be a part of every Board meeting, and that the ASUO President would be delivering a standing report, as well. He stated that he would take the comments on the motion into consideration, and that his statement would be available after the Board meeting.
4.2 Update: Academic Integrity Task Force
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would consider item 4.2: the update on the Academic Integrity Task Force. He gave the floor to Associate Professor Joe Lowndes to present the update.
Associate Professor Joe Lowndes (Political Science) introduced himself as the Chair of the Graduate Council. He explained that the Academic Integrity Task Force had been charged to respond to the Administration's Academic Continuity Plan and to come up with possible ways to implement academic integrity in grading during the strike. He stated that the Task Force had consulted with Department Heads, members of the committees, Head of Financial Aid Jim Brooks, and University Registrar Sue Eveland to determine if there was a way to preserve academic integrity and allow grades to be given where they were not issued by professors. He reported that the Task Force had found that there was no way to preserve academic integrity. He added that the Task Force had written a report that chose to uphold the principles of academic integrity for faculty. He stated that these principles were: that the true instructors of record maintain control over their classes; that no faculty member should be disciplined for refusing to violate his or her academic integrity; and that faculty not be asked to compromise academic integrity to solve administrative problems.
He stated that the Task Force decided to lay out the faculty's options to preserve and defend instructor choice. These options were: to enter a provisional grade as a final grade that could be changed later; to enter a final grade based on work done thus far or some other criteria; and to elect to not submit a grade altogether. He noted that the non-submission of grades was a controversial option, because it could potentially imperil students with financial aid. He explained that the Task Force had spoken with the Head of Financial Aid and the Registrar to see if there was any way that this option could be exercised without interfering with financial aid, and that it was clear from these discussions that it would not be possible in the short run. He stated that the Task Force had also considered whether another grade category could be created that would allow faculty members to say that students had attended class up until the very end. He stated that the purpose of this was to demonstrate that students had been in class, which would preserve their financial aid. He added that the Task Force decided to postpone looking at this possibility until Winter Term, because the strike ended.
Senate President Kyr reminded those present that the Academic Council would be reconvened. He asked if there were any questions or comments on the update. He recognized Senator Freyd.
Senator Jennifer Freyd (Psychology) asserted that it was important for the University to solve problems—such as how to approach grading in a crisis—using a bottom-up approach, which she stated was at the heart of a great university. She added that universities not use a corporate, military, top-down, authoritarian approach, because it squelches creativity and great ideas.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Berk.
Professor Gerry Berk (Director of Graduate Studies, Political Science) asked if there would be a place—as the Senate moved forward—to review future processes and policies related to academic integrity. He explained that there were many faculty members outside of the Senate who needed a voice. He asked if there existed some kind of forum that would allow such individuals to communicate directly with Administrators about the gravity of what had transpired.
Senate President Kyr stated that there was, indeed, a process. He reminded those present that seeking communication with Senate representatives was one way to have a voice. He then stated that he would like to commit to having a forum related to the topic of healing that the Senate would host in January. He stated that the Senate would invite everybody involved, including the general public and administrators. He then recognized Senator Cramer.
Senator Jane Cramer (Political Science) stated that in the wake of the strike, there remained significant concerns that academic integrity had not been maintained. She explained that many students were issued heavily inflated grades, and she underscored that these grades were final—not provisional. She stated that she did not think this preserved academic integrity.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Stabile.
Professor Carol Stabile (Women’s and Gender Studies, Journalism and Communication) stated that she respectfully disagreed with the spirit of optimism regarding recent events. She expressed that, as the Chair of the Senate Task Force on Sexual Violence and Survivor Support, she had been shocked by the Administration’s response to the Task Force's recommendations. She stated that she believed there had been a good deal of disrespect directed toward certain faculty members on campus and their efforts to conduct research about sexual violence. She stated that she felt as though one of the Task Force's major recommendations—to not to sign on to the $85,000 AAU survey—had been completely disregarded, and that until she had a sense of how decisions were being made and who was in charge, it was difficult for her to determine how to move forward. She added that an alarming decision had been made by General Counsel concerning the provision of counseling to survivors. She stated that it appeared to her that unilateral decisions were still being made—behind closed doors, and without discussion—that deeply affected her ability to mentor students and to do her job on campus.
Senate President Kyr stated that he understood Professor Stabile’s frustration, but that it was important to work positively toward their goals. He stated that part of the process of going forward was to give everybody a voice, and to promote healing.
Professor Stabile stated that she did not need a voice. She stated that she just wanted to have some meaningful impact on the decisions that affect her working life and her students' working life.
Senate President Kyr sympathized with Professor Stabile's frustration, but asserted that it was important to continue together to make a difference, because that was the only way to move forward. He recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor John Bonine (Law) stated that he was done with the “Kumbaya,” and that he agreed with Carol and the other speakers. He stated that he was in favor of praising the Administration when it was warranted, but added that he was also disappointed by many of their actions. He noted that despite the Administration’s stated intentions to collaborate, it had still set up a separate, non-Senate Athletics Review Committee. He also asserted that the Administration was not respecting the Sexual Violence Task Force, as they had set up a separate group to decide what surveys would be done on campus. He added that some of the University’s expert researchers had been demeaned by University Administrators, and that the Administration had never apologized for this. He added that the group responsible for deciding which surveys would be done was in complete control of the process instead of being in a partnership with the Task Force. He stated that the "Kumbaya" positive stuff was great, but that the Senate still had to insist that the Sexual Violence Task Force be taken seriously.
Senate President Kyr offered his assurance that the Senate would not let go of the important issues. He recognized Senator Koopman.
Senator Colin Koopman (Philosophy) stated that he did not think that Senate President Kyr was expressing an overly optimistic “Kumbaya” point of view. He stated that everybody was aware that there were a number of crucial problems on campus. He shared his observation that Senate President Kyr was simply urging the Senate not to get mired in cynicism, because that would be to lose the game. He invited the Senate to hear some of Senate President Kyr's remarks in this light.
Senate President Kyr stated that going forward, the Senate would be getting very direct and clear communications about how things were proceeding at each step of the way. He stated that the Senate needed to improve its mode of communication and outreach, and offered his assurance that it would be doing just that. He gave the Senate his word that he would not budge in the defense of the faculty or the University. He recognized Senator Dreiling.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) stated that he wanted to acknowledge that the Senate had avoided a serious problem (the Board proposal) by being vigilant and moving swiftly. He commended Senate President Kyr, the members of the Senate Executive Committee, and others who had opposed the initiative. He added that this would not be the last time that faculty, students and staff would need to be vigilant, active, and mobilized on campus. He stated that this sort of bottom-up energy would make the University better.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Mann.
Professor Bonnie Mann (Department Head, Philosophy) stated that she wanted to address the question regarding Academic Integrity. She stated that the philosophy department had been at the center of the tensions between the faculty and the Administration, because it had seven solo-taught GTF courses. She stated that she was the instructor of record for one of these courses, along with Judith Baskin. She explained that her strategy of dealing with the GTFF strike was the non-submission of grades. She added that after meeting with Dean Marcus Judith Baskin, they agreed to tell all 226 students in the seven GTF-taught courses that they should complete any work that had been assigned. Professor Mann then explained that without consulting with her, Judith Baskin had sent an email out to students telling them: "You don't have to complete your final assignments." She stated that Judith Baskin also went on to raise the grades of students who complained. She explained that this meant that she essentially recalculated the complaining students’ grades until they were what the students wanted. She reiterated that this was what had been done, and that it could not be undone. She also noted that many of the GTFs had planned for a possible strike, and as a result, that they had given final assignments before they left—along with a due date for that final assignment and exact instructions of how to turn that assignment in. She asserted that if the grading of the GTF-taught courses had been left alone, these classes would have been in the process of being properly graded as she spoke. She stated that because of the premature and unnecessary intervention by Judith Baskin, students received grades on the basis of partial work that was able to be renegotiated until they received the grade they wanted. She stated that this was an extremely egregious event, and added that she hoped the Task Force would look at what happened, and how bad it was.
Senate President Kyr recognized an unidentified speaker.
The unidentified speaker expressed that the GTFF strike demonstrated that “where there’s a will, there’s a way.”
Senate President Kyr recognized Michael (he was not identified beyond his first name).
Michael stated that women on campus were under assault in a way that men were not. He also stated that the Senate needed to take the denigration of Professor Freyd's research seriously. He stated that this was a really big problem that needed to be addressed.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor Bonine stated that he wanted to make a motion to suspend the rules in order to allow Senator Freyd to present a motion to give a charge to the Academic Integrity Task Force to carry out the kind of investigation that Professor Mann had suggested.
Senate President Kyr invited discussion on the motion to suspend the rules and recognized Senator Davidson.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) asked what specific proposal the Senate would be suspending the rules for.
Professor Bonine stated that the proposal was to charge the Academic Task Force to conduct an investigation, but that the details would have to be expressed by the maker of the motion.
Senator Davidson asked if the Senate knew what was going to be investigated.
Senate President Kyr added that it was customary to gives such details.
Senator Freyd stated that the motion was to ask the Academic Integrity Task Force to investigate the situation regarding grading in the Philosophy Department as described by Professor Mann. She added that the investigation should be done in light of the standards of accreditation that govern the University—standards without which the University would not be in a position to grant degrees to students.
Senate Parliamentarian Paul Simonds (Anthropology Emeritus) informed Senate President Kyr that a motion to suspend the rules was not debatable, and that a vote needed to be called.
Senate President Kyr called for a vote on the motion to suspend the rules. The motion carried with a majority. Senate President Kyr then asked Senator Freyd for a clear statement of her motion.
Senator Freyd proposed that “The Senate charge the Academic Integrity Task Force to conduct an investigation of the alleged grading irregularities in the Philosophy Department, and any other cases that were brought forward during Fall 2014." At the request of Senate President Kyr, Senator Freyd gave the motion to the Senate.
Senator Debra Merskin (Journalism & Communication) seconded the motion.
Senate President Kyr invited Senator Freyd to provide background.
Senator Freyd noted that the University of Oregon is accredited by an accrediting body, and that this is an extremely important aspect of the University's ability to function. She stated that there are accreditation standards that have to do with academic integrity and grading, which made the alleged grading irregularities a very serious matter.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for discussion, and recognized Senator McGough.
Senator Bruce McGough (Economics) stated that he felt the Senate should ask the Academic Integrity Task Force to provide a report, perhaps with recommendations.
Senate President Kyr stated that they already had to provide a report due to their existing charge. He then recognized Senator Rejaie.
Senator Reza Rejaie (Computer & Information Science) asked if the result of the investigation was intended to be a report of the investigation, or list of possible solutions for the cases that the Task Force identified.
Professor Bonine stated that it was too early to know. He explained that if everything was clean, there would be no reason to ask for recommendations. If things were not clean, he continued, then the Senate could charge the Task Force with providing recommendations.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Berk.
Professor Gerry Berk (Director of Graduate Studies, Political Science) stated that he was concerned about the language "being brought forward." He explained that people who were instructors of record in courses might be in particularly vulnerable positions, and to expect people in vulnerable positions to come forward as a form of investigation was suspect. He added that similar alleged grading irregularities had occurred in Political Science by the Department Head.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Ellis.
Senator Jennifer Ellis (Finance) agreed with Professor Berk and suggested that the motion be amended to read "in the Philosophy and other departments during Fall 2014.”
Senate President Kyr explained that with the proposed amendment, the language would now read: "The Senate charges the Academic Integrity Task Force to conduct an investigation of the alleged grading irregularities in the Philosophy and other departments during Fall 2014."
Senator Jane Cramer (Political Science) seconded the motion to amend.
Senate President Kyr invited discussion. None followed, and Senate President Kyr called a vote. The amendment carried, and discussion returned to original motion as amended. Senate President Kyr recognized Instructor McQuilkin.
Instructor Terry McQuilkin (School of Music and Dance) suggested that the motion be amended to replace "alleged" with "reports of."
Senator David Espinoza seconded the motion to amend.
Senate President Kyr invited discussion on the motion to amend, and recognized Senator Koopman.
Senator Colin Koopman (Philosophy) stated that he preferred "alleged" to "reports of," because the spirit of the motion intended for the Task Force to investigate the irregularities—not just reports of the irregularities. He added that “reports of” might also connote that the Task Force would investigate the reporters of the irregularities rather than just the irregularities themselves, which were actions by the Administration. He therefore stated that he opposed the motion to amend.
Senate President Kyr recognized an unidentified speaker.
The unidentified speaker stated that he wanted to second what Senator Koopman had brought up. He stated that "alleged grading irregularities" allowed the Task Force more leeway to look into what happened as things came to light.
Senate President Kyr recognized Associate Professor Lowndes.
Associate Professor Joe Lowndes (Political Science) asked if something should be said about irregularities stemming from the Academic Continuity Plan.
Senate President Kyr explained that Associate Professor Lowndes’ suggestion would require a separate discussion, and that the Senate had to deal with the present motion to amend first. He recognized Instructor McQuilkin.
Instructor McQuilkin stated that he would like to withdraw his motion to amend.
Senate President Kyr, on the advice of the Parliamentarian, stated that the motion to amend belonged to the Senate and that it had to be voted on. A vote was called and the amendment was defeated. Senate President Kyr then noted that Senator Dreiling wished to call the question. Senate President Kyr held a vote to close debate, which carried. Senate President Kyr then called the question. The motion carried. Senate President Kyr asked if there were any further questions regarding academic integrity. He recognized Moshe Immerman.
Moshe Immerman stated that the "the price of liberty is eternal vigilance." He went on to comment that he saw the current situation facing the University as a “micro-cycle, which is embedded in yet-to-come, […] more concerning, macro-cycles.” He suggested that everyone seek ways to be “more operationally capable, […] both individually, and collectively.”
Senate President Kyr politely reminded Mr. Immerman that the focus of the discussion was academic integrity.
Moshe Immerman stated that the “faculty of a great university [...] is like the pineal gland, pituitary gland, and heart of a culture.” He stated that the University was facing “still larger forces trying to shut down the democratic process in America.” He asked those present to “become skillful—but very spiritual, and effective—attorneys, recognizing this is just the beginning of a deeper reclamation [the] right to mental and spiritual freedom as a faculty.”
Senate President Kyr recognized Associate Professor Epstein.
Associate Professor Maram Epstein (East Asian Languages and Literatures) stated that she was concerned about the alleged threats of sanctions against Department Heads who refused to cooperate with the Administration. She stated that she would like some investigation of this, and that it was something that needed to be discussed in terms of collaboration in the future, and cooperative performance.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor Bonine asked if he could make an inquiry of the maker of the earlier motion (Senator Freyd). He asked whether the phrase "alleged grading irregularities in departments" could include—without passing a new resolution—anything that might have been potential to lead to that (i.e., possible retaliation).
Senator Freyd stated that the phrase was, indeed, meant to include such things.
Senator Cramer proposed a motion which read: “The Senate charges the Academic Integrity Task Force to conduct an investigation of the alleged threats to discipline, or to establish disciplinary procedures against, Department Heads in relationship to the Academic Continuity Plan of the Administration in Fall 2014.”
Professor Frances White (Anthropology) asked for clarification of Senator Cramer's motion with regards to the previous motion (Senator Freyd's). She explained that the Academic Integrity Task Force was made up of the Graduate Council, Undergraduate Council, and the Committee on Courses, and that these committees had delegated to their Chairs. She stated that the Chairs had thus been functioning as the Task Force. She asked whether the motion was referring to the full three committees, or to the Chairs.
Senate President Kyr stated that it would ultimately refer to the Academic Council in which the Academic Integrity Task Force was subsumed.
Senate President Kyr noted that Jane Cramer's motion had not yet been seconded, and that it did not yet belong to the Senate. He explained that this allowed for further comments and friendly amendments. He recognized Senator Ellis.
Senator Jennifer Ellis (Finance) suggested altering the language of the motion to read: “...disciplinary procedures against Department Heads who refuse to participate in the Academic Continuity Plan..."
Professor Bonine stated that there was no need for details about what happened. He explained that this would come out in the investigation. He suggested that the language be left broad.
Senator Cramer agreed that it should be left broad.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Mann.
Professor Mann stated that the source of the information the motion was referring to was a meeting between herself, Lizzie Reis, Ellen Herman, Dean Marcus, and Judith Baskin. She stated that she did not think the word "threat" was accurate, because Dean Marcus had tried “very hard not to say that’s was what the meeting was about.” She stated that it was only when she pushed Dean Marcus and said, "But I just told you last week I wasn't going to enter grades; why are you asking me yet again?" that he replied, "Well, to tell you the truth, I want to be very clear about what your responsibilities are, because I have to do that in order to set the ground for any future disciplinary action."
She stated, consequently, that she wanted to change the language to "the alleged plans to establish the groundwork for disciplinary procedures against Department Heads." She explained that she did not want to be inflammatory, because Dean Marcus did not actually call her in to threaten her. She reiterated that he called her in to remind her of her duties, and to let her know that lawyers were looking into disciplinary options. She added that Lizzie Reis was included in this because she also signed the letter refusing to enter grades.
Senate President Kyr asked Professor Mann if the wording now accurately reflected what happened in the meeting.
Professor Mann confirmed that it did.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Freyd.
Senator Freyd stated that she would suggest very broad language that would include what Professor Mann had just discussed, but would also be open to other possibilities that could emerge—including faculty or staff who were threatened if they did not agree to go along with it.
Professor Bonine suggested that the language "Department Heads or others," be included. He also suggested that "establish the groundwork for disciplinary procedures" be changed to "establish the groundwork for disciplinary procedures, or otherwise move against."
Senate President Kyr read the entire motion for clarity: "The Senate charges the Academic Integrity Task Force to conduct an investigation of the alleged plans to establish the groundwork for disciplinary procedures or otherwise move against department heads, or others, in relationship to the Academic Continuity Plan of the Administration in Fall 2014." He then recognized Senator Davidson.
Senator John Davidson suggested that the language read "disciplinary procedures or other action against Department Heads" on grammatical grounds.
Senate President Kyr confirmed that the language would now read: "to establish the groundwork for disciplinary procedures or other action against Department Heads, or others, in relationship to the Academic Continuity Plan of the Administration in Fall 2014." He then asked if Senator Cramer gave the motion to the Senate.
Senator Cramer gave the motion to the Senate. The motion was seconded, and the floor was opened for discussion. Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dreiling.
Senator Dreiling called the question.
Senate President Kyr called a vote to close the debate. The vote carried. He then called a vote on the motion itself, which carried with a majority.
8. OTHER BUSINESS
Senate President Kyr reminded those present that he was preparing a statement that would be delivered to the Board the following day. He stated that it would be a forward-looking statement of working together with the Board and the Administration, but that it would also take into account the comments that he had heard during the Senate meeting.
Senator Gordon Sayre (English) stated that other Senators also planned to deliver comments to the Board during the Public Comment portion of their meeting. He suggested that Senate President Kyr and the Senators who planned on giving remarks should coordinate.
Senate President Kyr agreed that they should coordinate their remarks, and asked the participating Senators to meet with him after the Senate meeting. Senate President Kyr asked for a motion to adjourn. The motion was given to the Senate and seconded. A vote on the motion was held, and the motion carried.
Senate President Kyrcalled the December 10, 2014 meeting of the University Senate to a close at 5:00 p.m.
Present: Miriam Deutsch, Jennifer Freyd, Weiyong He, June Li, Michael Price, Randy Sullivan, Jane Cramer, John Davidson, Michael Dreiling, William Harbaugh, Jason Brown, Diane Dugaw, Deborah Healey, Geraldine Poizat-Newcomb, Regina Psaki, Gordon Sayre, Richard Margerum, Laura Leete, Marylin Nippold, Deborah Olson, Debra Merskin, Mary Ann Hyatt, Edward Teague, Robin Clement, Alexandre Dossin, Robert Kyr, Monique Balbuena, David Espinoza, Abel Verros, John Ahlen, Theodora Ko Thompson, Jimmy Murray, Mike Strain
Absent: Paul Dassonville, Ken Prehoda, Ron Lovinger, Charles Lachman, Jerry Rosiek, Victoria Mitchell, Debra Thurman, Samantha Cohen, Quin Haaga, Kate Klosno, Andrew Lubash
Excused: Bruce McGough, Colin Koopman, Donna Shaw, Jennifer Ellis, Lisa Raleigh
1. CALL TO ORDER
Senate President Robert Kyr (Music) called the December 3, 2014 meeting of the University of Oregon Senate to order at 3:00 p.m. in room 115 Lawrence Hall. Alluding to the GTFF strike, he explained that the University was in the middle of an unprecedented situation. He requested that those present be respectful in their comments and dialogue with each other.
2. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES
Senate President Kyr asked the Senate to consider the minutes of the November 5th, 2014 meeting. He requested questions and comments related to the minutes. None were put forward, and the minutes were approved.
3. STATE OF THE UNIVERSITY
Senate President Kyr proceeded to the State of the University Address, informing the Senate that Interim President Scott Coltrane would be delivering remarks and receiving questions.
Interim President Scott Coltrane thanked Senate President Kyr and stated that the University faced a challenging time. He explained that the GTFF strike had been difficult for everyone, and that no one had wanted things to escalate to this point. He stated that he, Provost Frances Bronet, and their team had been working day and night to work toward an agreement. He added that no one wanted to see the GTFs—who the University valued so much—on the picket lines, but noted that he respected their right to be there. He stated that the strike was also putting great strain on the community. He thanked the faculty and staff who were working to ensure that the undergraduate students were served during the strike. He added that he believed that the Administration's offer provided the flexibility and security that the GTFs had asked for, and that it offered non-GTF graduate students (who were not eligible for tuition waivers and health benefits) a safety net, as well.
Interim President Coltrane noted that the University was presently faced with closing out the Fall Term. He commented that he was pleased with the mostly respectful and smooth operation of both the strike, and classes, over the previous two days. He offered a response to the Senate’s motion on academic continuity, stating that he appreciated the Senate's efforts to promote dialogue and to maintain the University's academic standards during the strike. He added that the continuity plan for the strike was intended to provide faculty with a range of tools to help minimize impacts on the undergraduate students. He asserted that the Academic Affairs Office—under the direction of the Provost's Office, and in collaboration with Deans—had endeavored to be as open about academic continuity planning as possible. He explained that the academic continuity plan called for extending options to faculty to allow them to conduct and conclude their classes in ways that met their academic standards, and added that he hoped that all faculty would help the Administration to maintain those academic standards. He stated that the strike was an emergency situation, and that Academic Affairs did not have as much time to confer and collaborate with the normal committees on these matters as it would have liked. Nevertheless, he stated that he was compelled—by the authority delegated by the Board of Trustees—to take action to ensure that undergraduate students received the best educational services possible under the circumstances. He stated that he continued to welcome guidance and recommendations from the University Senate about ensuring academic continuity. He added that everyone present shared a desire to serve undergraduate students, and to guarantee that they would receive grades in their courses. He asserted that the University would maintain its academic standards during the strike by the GTFF.
Turning to the issue of sexual assault on campus, Interim President Coltrane stated that he expected to receive the report and recommendations of the President's Review Panel in the following week. He noted that he would make the report public, and explained that this report—in addition to the Senate Task Force recommendations and the Student Life gap analysis—would form the basis of the University's comprehensive plan to address sexual assault. He stated that the University had spent the last year implementing new practices in this area, including adding staff and doing various assessments. He added that a critical element of the University's ability to make progress was to have high-quality data and information regarding these issues. To this end, Interim President Coltrane stated that he planned to establish a Campus Climate Survey Advisory Group to provide him with counsel about conducting surveys at the University on the topic of sexual violence and its prevention. He added that he had begun reaching out to experts on campus to serve on this advisory group. He continued that the President's Office would also be providing funds for two surveys at the University of Oregon—one in conjunction with AAU efforts, and one to be developed and administered locally. He stated that he would ask the Campus Climate Advisory Group to help oversee the administration of the AAU campus climate survey during the coming spring, as well as the administration of the UO-specific survey during the next academic year. He added that he valued both the national perspective offered by the AAU-sponsored survey, and the focused perspective of the UO-specific effort. He stated that he believed a high volume of data was preferable when tackling such an important problem. He stated that the University needed to be able to better measure incident levels (and any correlations relating to them), and to eventually assess the effectiveness of various educational enforcement and prevention efforts. He stated that he thought taking advantage of both approaches would enable the University to contribute to local and national debates about how best to measure, assess, and address this pressing social problem. He stated that he had hoped to delay decision-making about the surveys in order to let the debate play out on how the surveys should be conducted, but stated that he could wait no longer. He added that he needed faculty committee representatives of different perspectives to be at the table with the AAU, and to be involved in the UO-specific efforts.
Addressing the policy review process and strategic planning efforts, Interim President Coltrane stated that 67 outdated or inapplicable policies were going to be recommended to the Board for repeal. He noted that the policies were listed on the policy library for review. He added that on October 15th, the University had provided the Senate President and the Senate Executive Committee with 100 initial policies focused on academic areas for the Senate to prioritize and review. He stated that the Administration had conferred with this group about a process to review nearly 800 additional policies in order to ensure that they were relevant, current, and updated. He stated that this process was getting closer to being finalized and having a representative group appointed for the Policy Advisory Committee. He stated that he expected that group to form in the next couple of weeks, and to convene in January.
Speaking on Provost Bronet's behalf, Interim President Coltrane stated that he was pleased to report that the University-wide Strategic Planning Task Force work groups had met for the first time during the previous week. He stated that more than 50 people had gathered to discuss how the University would take its aspirations to elevate its academic and research endeavors to the next level. He added that the Provost had posted information about the groups, the process, and the goals on the Provost's website. With that, Interim President Coltrane closed his remarks and requested questions.
Senator David Espinoza (Counseling & Testing Center) stated that it was his understanding that there was an agreement about the proposed safety net that Coltrane had referred to. He asked why the Administration was reluctant to include language regarding the safety net in the CBA, given that the idea had arisen out of the GTFF negotiations.
Interim President Coltrane stated that several proposals had come forward to address the issue of medical or paternal leave. He stated that the University had initially come up with a proposal of flexibility, which would have institutionalized ongoing practices and guaranteed two weeks of time off without loss of benefits or salary. He stated that this proposal was not satisfactory to the GTFF, so the University then proposed a hardship fund that would be available to all graduate students. He noted that about half of the graduate students were GTFs, while the other half were not, and that this fund would be available to both. He stated that it was inappropriate to have only half of the graduate students collectively bargained for on this matter, and that it was therefore inappropriate to include it in the CBA. He stated that the Administration had proposed an MOU between the Office of the President and the Graduate Dean to guarantee that funding for the program was going forward. He stated that the Administration also offered to put some things regarding the fund into the CBA, including: the amount of the annual commitment, the fact the GTFF would have full access to it, and even that a GTFF member would be part of the advisory group that managed it. He stated that this was where negotiations currently stood. He explained that he thought there was appreciation for the offer on both sides, but that the details still needed to be worked out. He then recognized Senator Michael Dreiling.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) stated that he had a question regarding the November 19th Senate motion and Interim President Coltrane's response to it. He added that he thought this was important question for the future of governance—and the commitment to shared governance—at UO. He asked Interim President Coltrane if it was his understanding that the University Senate was the body that the statutory faculty had delegated authority to on all matters of academic governance.
Interim President Coltrane agreed that the President and the faculty were responsible. He added that the President was primarily responsible for administrative matters, and that the faculty was responsible for policy and other matters, such as: academic integrity within the classroom, curriculum approval, and the awarding of degrees.
Senator Dreiling asked Interim President Coltrane if it was it sufficient, in his view, to only consult with select Deans or Department Heads—and not the Senate—on matters of academic governance at the University.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he would not say that there was lack of consultation; he conceded that there had not been consultation as it was normally carried out. He explained that this was because the University was in a strike situation, and as such, administrative procedures needed to be put in place that allowed Deans, Department Heads, Program Directors, Presidents, and Provosts to conduct the business of the University. He stated that the Administration could not consult about everything, and this was just due to the nature of the situation.
Senator Dreiling asked Interim President Coltrane if he was not confident that the matter could have been handled in within the appropriate Senate bodies.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he was not sure exactly what Senator Dreiling believed should have been done. He stated that he was certainly willing to hear what that was. He offered his assurance that consultation had occurred; he added that more consultation was always better, but that the Administration had also faced a short time-frame. He explained that the normal process for administrative reach-out was through Deans, Department Heads, and other constituted faculty members who have administrative roles. He stated that involving other members introduced complications in a bargaining situation. He stated that the Administration was open to more consultation, but added that he did not feel as though there was a profound distrust. He explained that the Administration was simply trying to make the necessary decisions, and asserted that Academic Affairs had included faculty in suggestions about how to deal with the strike. He reiterated that he was interested in hearing how the Administration could have done better by consulting with specific committees.
Senator Dreiling stated that he believed there were many other options that could have been included in the plan, but were not. He stated that this was largely due to the nature of the consultation that was sought.
Interim President Coltrane recognized Senator Regina Psaki.
Senator Regina Psaki (Romance Languages) stated that she had read, in several places, that one of Interim President Coltrane’s stated priorities was to ensure that faculty retained autonomy over their courses. She added that she felt a very strong sense of investment and belief that she was the best person to make decisions about the evaluation, assessment, and closing out of her course. She stated that this did not square with making Department Heads instructors of record on GTF-supported classes. She asked Interim President Coltrane if he could talk about this, explaining that she was perplexed about how the principle she described matched with this procedure.
Interim President Coltrane stated that it was the University's obligation to award grades and to complete classes. He explained that in the absence of an assigned instructor, the University had to go down the chain of command—in this case, to the Department Heads. He added that if there was already an instructor of record who had a GTF working with them, then the University would defer to their interests and judgment.
Professor John Bonine (Law) stated that Interim President Coltrane had mentioned “input into the AAU process” as something that he wanted to see happen with regard to the AAU survey. Professor Bonine pointed out that the AAU prohibits any campus institutional review board from making changes to the survey questions. Similarly, he added, the committee that President Coltrane had described was prohibited from changing any of the questions or methodology in the AAU survey. He asked Interim President Coltrane if he would be willing to discontinue participation in the AAU survey if either the Advisory Committee, or the IRB, found the questions in the AAU survey to be inappropriate (whether because of potential risk to survivors, or because of bad science).
Interim President Coltrane stated that this was exactly why he needed the committee. He explained that he needed experts to help him decide if the University would make a financial commitment to the AAU survey. He added that he wanted to have as much input as possible, and that if it got to the point that AAU was offering a survey the University did not like, then the University would not participate.
Professor Bonine added that an estimated eighty-five thousand dollars would be put into the AAU survey. He stated that, so far, six universities (seven including UO) had signed up for the survey, and nine had refused. Professor Bonine went on to state that the Task Force at UO had recommended that about seventy-five thousand dollars be devoted to a campus-specific, UO-designed survey. He asked Interim President Coltrane if he was willing to say that he would consider the same amount of financial commitment for the UO-specific survey as was being made available for the AAU survey.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he was prepared to do this. He added that part of the reason that he wanted a committee to advise him on this matter was in order to see if UO could somehow combine the two surveys.
Professor Bonine stated that he believed an effort to combine the surveys would be interesting, because there could be a benefit in doing both surveys simultaneously. Professor Bonine asked Interim President Coltrane if he would be willing to have the UO-specific survey done at the same time as the AAU survey.
Interim President Coltrane indicated that he was, adding that this would be subject to the committee that would advise him.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) stated that he wanted to return the discussion to the academic continuity plan. He asked whether the academic continuity team—whose membership, as he understood it, was unknown—received advice from legal consultants and other outside groups to prepare the plan.
Interim President Coltrane stated that the continuity plan, prepared by the Office of Emergency Services, was primarily advised by people on campus. He stated that this included legal advice from counsel, and financial advice from various administrators, vice presidents, and vice provosts.
Senator Harbaugh asked if any outside input had contributed to the plan.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he did not know of any outside input.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) stated that he had a practical question about the continuity plan. He explained that he was hoping to post grades sometime soon, but that half of the grades for his course might not be available to him. He shared his thought that it would not be difficult to add a box to DuckWeb that could be checked to indicate: "This person attended and participated in class, but there's no grade available yet." He stated that this would seem to solve a lot of financial aid and other problems. He asked whether or not this option had been investigated.
Interim President Coltrane stated that it was his understanding that the option Senator Davidson had mentioned would not satisfy the financial aid requirements. He explained that Arts and Sciences, for instance, had many faculty who were electing to take the grades as of the date the GTFs walked, and entering those grades with the intention that they could be changed subsequently.
Senator Dreiling stated that he did not understand why faculty with GTF-supported classes were being asked to insert grades that were based upon partial information. He stated that to do so would be to fail to assess the students upon the full scope of the contract of the course. He added that the faculty had been told that the Deans or Department Heads would insert grades based upon the information they had. He asserted that grades entered in this way would not be distinguishable on students’ transcripts from a true grade, and that they would not be accurate reflections of the work completed by the students.
Interim President Coltrane stated that they would be accurate reflections of the work completed by the students up to the date of submission.
Senator Dreiling asked if these grades would show up as final grades in transcripts if they were never reassigned. He stated that there would be no way to tell if a final grade that was inserted was a final grade based upon a completion of the course requirements, or some partially-informed grade.
Interim President Coltrane stated that the partial grade would reflect the work done by the student and the grade earned according to the instructor of record. He stated that professors working with GTFs would be obligated to make decisions about how to handle the final exam. He added that professors do this all the time—for example, when deciding that some students, who are in good standing, do not have to take the final.
Senator Dreiling stated that turning over 440 grades to an Associate Dean to input grades based upon information in the Blackboard gradebook was something that never happened, and asserted that there were other options that had not been explored. He added that he was disturbed, as a faculty member, that there were monitors in his class. He stated that there were elements of the implementation of this plan that did not jive with the academic integrity and academic standards that the University stood for. He added that he was not hearing that there was concern about this in the Administration.
Interim President Coltrane offered his assurance that there was plenty of concern. He stated that the Administration’s first obligation was to have the students fulfill their grades, and to give them the grade that they deserved so that they would be able to stay in line for graduation or financial aid. He stated that the Administration was trying to support that. He added that the United Academics contract called for faculty to continue doing their work and to decide what was appropriate in this situation.
Senator Dreiling stated that he knew what to do, and that he would continue to do his work. He noted, however, that he had 440 students turning in 440 papers, and stated that grading these papers would not be possible without the assistance of the graduate students in his class. He added that grading the papers was not his job, and he asked who would be responsible for putting grades in. He stated that somebody other than himself was going to put the grades in for his students.
Interim President Coltrane stated that Senator Dreiling was the instructor of record, and that the University depended on him to do it. He stated the Senator Dreiling could make his own choices.
Senator Dreiling stated that he saw the dilemma the Administration was putting faculty in.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he saw the dilemma everyone was put in, adding that everyone was in it together.
Senator Dreiling added that he hoped that Interim President Coltrane would be able to fix the problem the next day.
Interim President Coltrane offered his assurance that the Administration was working on it.
Professor Bonine stated that he had looked at the financial aid website, and recalled that financial aid had to be done by roughly the second week of January—not December 19th.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he would defer to his colleagues on that point. He stated that the Registrar told the Administration that turn-in on the 16th (the normal date) needed to be extended to the 19th. He stated that anything past that date would begin to affect various processes, including financial aid, matriculation, enrollment in classes, and so forth.
An unidentified speaker asked Interim President Coltrane what he would suggest the undergraduates do while they watched their grades teeter, and their mentors and instructors picket all over campus.
Interim President Coltrane suggested that the undergraduates initiate dialogue with instructors and classroom monitors, and that they make their own decisions. He stated that the Administration would ensure that undergraduates received grades as normally as possible given the situation.
An unidentified speaker, who identified himself as a faculty member in the philosophy department, was recognized. He stated that Interim President Coltrane’s comment reminded him of the end of the Wizard of Oz. He recalled that the Scarecrow had asked for a brain, and instead received a diploma. He stated that he interpreted what Interim President Coltrane had just said as: “Well, the students might not get an education, but they will get grades.” He asked whether this was actually the position of the University, or if he was simply misunderstanding what had been suggested.
Interim President Coltrane stated that what he had suggested was that the University would, as much as possible, reward students for what they had earned in the class. He stated that the University still needed to give grades in order to fulfill its obligation to the students. He added that students were paying high tuition, and that they expected to be served through the end of the term. He explained that the University had to do what it could in order to make that happen. With that, Interim President Coltrane thanked those present and yielded the floor.
3.2 Senate Meetings for Winter Quarter 2015; Robert Kyr, Senate President
Senate President Kyr thanked Interim President Coltrane for his remarks. He stated that he wished to make a remark about what the Senate faced going forward. He stated that during the Fall quarter, the Senate had planned to focus its meetings largely on action items. He explained that the Senate was also in the process of developing a great relationship with that Board, and noted that this had involved hearing presentations from Board members. He stated that in the Winter term, the Senate was going to be focusing almost exclusively on action items and new business. He added that, because of the charge that the Chair of the Board of Trustees has given the Senate, two additional meetings for the Senate in winter would be necessary. He asked those present to support this decision so that the Senate could complete the work before it. He added that he would be in touch regarding the scheduling of the extra two meetings. He recognized Senator Regina Psaki.
Senator Regina Psaki (Romance Languages) requested that the Senate hear a motion to suspend the rules so that a resolution could be considered.
Senate President Kyr asked if there were any objections. None followed, and he asked that the resolution be examined before it was given to the Senate as a motion. He noted that the Senate would not be voting on the "whereas" clauses, but simply Section 2. After everyone had a chance to see the resolution, the motion was given a second by Senator Deborah Merskin. Senate President Kyr asked if Senator Psaki would like to provide background.
Senator Psaki deferred to Senator Dreiling, the maker of the resolution, for background.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) stated that he was moving the motion forward in response to information he had received. He began by noting that he had observed monitors in his classroom the day before. He stated that according to the academic continuity plan, the monitors were only to be assigned to courses that were formerly taught by graduate student instructors who were currently on strike; Senator Dreiling indicated that he was therefore disturbed to find that there were people attending his class as monitors. He stated that he was also struck by information he had received which indicated that groundwork had been laid for the discipline of Department Heads who refused to conduct the assignments that they were directed to conduct under the academic continuity plan. He added that under the academic continuity plan, grades would be assigned through people who could be assigned as instructors of record. He emphasized that this would not be the actual people who had signed the contract, led the syllabus, and led the class. He reiterated that new instructors of record could be assigned to input grades at the end of the term at any cost—without regard for whether or not the assessments were completed by appropriate graders, whether the assessments were completed at all, or whether the assignments were completed at all. He stated that this was concerning, and that it was a breach of the social contract between a faculty member and students. He explained that the syllabus represented that contract. He asserted that there were other options besides inserting grades at any cost at the end of the term. He pointed out that Professor Bonine had just brought up such an option: there could be delays that would not impact a student's financial aid status. He went on to state that the larger context at play was a concern about shared governance, about the institutional role of the University Senate, and about the importance of having consultation on matters such as the academic continuity plan. He stated that these aspects had been part of University for 148 years, and that they were a fundamental feature that could not be breached. He added that it was the duty of the Senate to uphold these responsibilities, and that it was with this in mind that he drafted—with help—the motion being considered. He stated that it was his hope that the Senate could be viewed as a body with the capacity to initiate a thoughtful, creative, proactive solution to an academic contingency, and still maintain clear academic integrity in the process. He stated that he thought this was something the Senate committee leaders were quite capable of doing, and that this was why the motion directed that the Graduate Council, Undergraduate Council, and the Chair of the Committee on Courses be assigned to immediately come up with alternatives that would retain academic integrity for faculty in the event that the strike with the GTFF should continue.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Dreiling, and asked that everyone be very respectful during the following debate and discussion. He recognized Senator Psaki.
Senator Psaki agreed with Senate President Kyr’s call for respectful discourse, but stated that she still supported the resolution. She explained that she thought the resolution was a positive—rather than a slap-on-the-wrist—kind of resolution, that called into action bodies that already existed for this kind of purpose. She stated that she understood President Coltrane's sense of urgency, but that she also understood that the strike was coming for many, many months. She stated that it was pretty clear that there was not going to be a quick settle. She added that she thought it was a great idea to have colleagues on the Senate bodies be galvanized and activated with their creative thinking. She stated that this was what the Senate subcommittees were for. She pointed out that there was an additional problem even if grades got submitted: the students would question their grades. She stated that faculty would be flooded with questions like: “Why did I get this grade? Why is this grade fair? What are you going to do about this grade?”
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor John Bonine (Law) asked Senator Dreiling if he intended to have the words “and report thereon” at the end of Section 2.2. He explained the current wording did not suggest that there would be a document expressing the evaluation discussed in Section 2.2.
Senate President Kyr asked if Professor Bonine meant: “report to the Senate thereon.”
Professor Bonine stated that he did not know, but added that to report it at least got the process going, and that people could do whatever they wanted. He added that reporting to the Senate suggested that nothing could then happen until the Senate took action.
Senate President Kyr asked if this was a motion to amend.
Professor Bonine stated that he could not make motions.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) made the motion to amend.
Senate President Kyr acknowledged that the motion had received a second and invited discussion. None followed; a voice vote was held, and the amendment carried unanimously.
Professor Bonine asked whose name, if any, would be on the transcript for classes that were graded by a department head. He explained that the name on the transcript suggests who taught and graded the course, and that it would be dishonest to put either the department head or the professor down in this context. He asked if there would be an asterisk that would indicate "graded by administration" or something similar.
Senator Harbaugh stated that he thought it should say “graded by the Wizard of Oz,” but that he thought the discussion was getting off topic.
Senate President Kyr requested further discussion.
Senator Michael Price (Mathematics) observed that several people had expressed the sentiment that there had been top-down pressure on professors regarding how to deal with the strike. He stated that, from his perspective, it had not felt that way. He then asked Senator Dreiling what his expected timeline for the motion was.
Senator Dreiling read from the motion: "That the Senate directs the Senate President to convene an emergency joint meeting." He stated that he took this to mean “as soon as possible,” and that the chairs of the committees would establish a workable set of alternatives that would complement the recommendations by the academic continuity plan. He added that this could also serve as a guidepost for future events and assure the faculty and the Administration that consultation with the University Senate was the appropriate avenue to carry out these kinds of planning steps.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Deborah Healey.
Senator Deborah Healey(American English Institute) stated that she liked the idea of having a clear process for involving the Senate that would be there for similar situations in the future.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Deborah Merskin.
Senator Merskin (School of Journalism and Communication) stated that one of the implications of giving a grade that might be higher than what the student would ultimately earn, was that the student would remain eligible for something that he or she should not be eligible for. She continued that once the strike was settled, a student could ultimately get a much lower grade, and that this would amount to falsifying information and artificially inflating grades.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Jane Cramer.
Senator Jane Cramer (Political Science) stated that her class was set up in such a way that students with lower grades had a lot of potential to raise their grades with research papers and finals. She stated that her students were in a panic, because partial grades would leave many of them with C's, D's, and F's even though they would not end up that way if the entire coursework was graded. She stated that she had promised her students an X if the strike continued, and that this was the only fair thing to do.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor Bonine stated that he wanted to clarify an aspect of the financial aid question. He stated that according to the financial aid website: "Since X, Y, F, N, I, and W do not confirm participation, students who receive these grades are required to prove last date of participation. Proof of participation may include, but is not limited to, statements from professors detailing your participation in courses and/or graded work..." He stated that students would maintain their financial aid—even with an X –as long as their professor provided a statement.
Senate President Kyr recognized Lisa Freinkel.
Associate Professor Lisa Freinkel (Comparative Literature and English) stated that one of the things she had discovered was that the University was far bigger than even faculty, instructors, graduate students, and undergraduates. She continued that the current conversation was difficult because no single person was in complete command of all the knowledge. She noted that she was on the Undergraduate Council, which she explained would be considering convening in Winter Term to talk about the aftermath of the strike. She stated that the general idea was to bring forward the Academic Council as a body that might consider how to move forward. She added that this did not answer the issue of how people should approach deciding what to do with their own class. She guaranteed, however, that pulling together the Heads of Subcommittees to "fix this now" would yield poor results.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dreiling.
Senator Dreiling stated that he wanted to point out that the current motion would be the second motion requesting action on the GTFF bargaining front. He stated that the University Senate had been attentive to the questions raised by the academic continuity plan. He added that it was good that the Senate was being diligent in pushing this along and reminding everyone of the Senate’s role in the governance of academic policy and matters on the campus.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Rich Margerum.
Senator Rich Margerum (Planning, Public Policy, and Management) stated that he supported the resolution, adding that he thought it was much more constructive than the one seen in the last Senate meeting in that it was actually suggesting a role that the Senate might play in the governance process. However, he noted that he had some doubts that it would actually result in much, given the timeframe. He urged that Senate to think about this as a permanent committee, because there were a lot of emergency situations (such as strikes, snowstorms, power outages, etc.) that could disrupt grades. He stated that having some sort of policy in place in all of these circumstances would be important. He added that he did not want to change the current resolution, but that this was something that the Senate should think about.
Senator Harbaugh stated that he was not sensing a lot of opposition, and that he would like to call the question.
Senate President Kyr asked if there were any objections to calling the question. None followed, and the vote to call the question carried unanimously. Senate President Kyr recognized an unidentified speaker.
The unidentified speaker identified himself as an undergraduate, and stated that he would like to ask a question regarding the issue of academic integrity. He stated that he had been hearing the phrases "academic continuity plan" and "academic integrity" used—almost exclusively—within the context of grades. He related that the GTF teaching his math course was able to explain math in a way that made sense to him as it never had before, and stated that he cared more about learning calculus than any letter on his transcript. He asked, therefore, "Why, when discussing academic continuity and academic integrity, does the focus tend to be on grades, as it is in this motion?” He explained that he cared much more about his education than his letter grade.
Senate President Kyr began to state that the Senate had to vote on the motion because the question had been called, but the speaker explained that his hand had been up—albeit unnoticed—before the question was called.
Senate President Kyr apologized and stated that he had to call the vote, and that he would allow time for a response afterward. The motion carried unanimously, and Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dreiling.
Senator Dreiling, responding to the undergraduate student, stated that it was the dialogue, the exchange of ideas, and the passion for learning that was the spirit of learning. He added that this was what academic integrity was about, and that it was the inspiration in his life as a faculty member. He stated that grades were meant to capture this, as much as possible, through the communication of a contract that everyone has as faculty members, instructors, and students. He stated that he wanted integrity in grades because it was the best way for instructors to approximate what has been learned by the student. He added that it was important, therefore, that grades were done well—consistently and fairly.
4. NEW BUSINESS
4.1 Motion (Legislation): Fall Curriculum Report; Frances White (Professor, Anthropology), Chair of the Committee on Courses
Senate President Kyr stated that at this time, the Senate would move to the next point on the agenda: the Fall Curriculum Report. He stated that it would be presented by Frances White (Chair), and asked Frances to give the motion to the Senate.
Professor Frances White (Anthropology) gave the motion.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dreiling, who offered a second for the motion. After reading the motion, Senate President Kyr invited Frances White to give some background.
Professor White stated that the Committee on Courses was a wonderful committee to serve on, and that it took its charge very seriously. She stated that it was a functional group of faculty that gave a very rigorous review to all of the classes that came before it. She stated that the committee had reviewed approximately 60 classes for administrative action, 30-35 new classes, three additional classes undergoing change, and three or four dropped classes this term. She added that about 80-85% of the classes that were reviewed required changes, and that those changes happened through an intense dialogue between the faculty members on the committee, and the instructors proposing the classes. She stated that the vast majority were approved, and that there were one or two denials of the multicultural component based on the committee’s assessment of what the multicultural requirement was meant to be. She stated that a summary of the Committee’s conclusions were in the report that was being put before the Senate.
Senate President Kyr asked if anyone had questions or comments for Professor White about the report. Seeing none, he called the question. The motion to approve the report carried unanimously.
Senate President Kyr stated that next on the agenda was a new program approval: the Master of Science and Sports Product Management. He stated that the maker of the motion was Joe Lowndes.
Associate Professor Joe Lowndes (Political Science) gave the motion to the Senate, and the motion was seconded by Jane Cramer. Senate President Kyr then invited Assistant Professor Lowndes to give some background regarding the motion.
Associate Professor Lowndes stated that Assistant Vice Provost for Academic Affairs, Ruth Keele, would give the background, and that he would then talk about the proposal itself as it went through the Graduate Council.
Senate President Kyr read Section 2 of the motion and invited Ruth Keele to give background.
Ruth Keele (Assistant Vice Provost in Academic Affairs) stated that bringing an independent motion for a new academic program was a departure from past practice. She explained that in the past, these programs would come to the Senate in the quarterly curriculum report under the heading of “other curricular matters.” She stated that the majority of these changes would be effected at the university level, meaning that the University had the authority to approve and implement them. She stated that this was not so for new degree programs. She explained that until the past July, the State Board of Higher Education authorized new degree programs, as well as new locations for existing programs. She continued that under the new governance model, this authority had been transferred to the HECC—the Higher Education Coordinating Commission. She added that what was transpiring was that new degree programs came to the Senate after they had been approved by the State. She stated that it had been proposed that the Senate vote at an earlier stage in the process, at which point the new degree program could be forwarded to the Board of Trustees, and then to the HECC. She stated that this was a more logical progression that more appropriately recognized the role of the faculty with respect to academic matters. She stated that it was also consistent with the procedures at OSU and PSU. She noted that this new model applied only to items that moved out of the University and to the State for approval, and that other curricular changes would continue to come to the Senate in the quarterly curricular report.
Associate Professor Lowndes stated that the proposal was originally brought to the Graduate Council in October. He stated that Roger Best had presented the proposal, and that there were a lot of questions from Council members. He elaborated that these questions regarded: clarity of the program requirements, availability of courses and faculty, and questions about how the internship program would work. He stated that the proposal was returned in November, and that the Council had decided the proposal met the criteria for a new program—provided that a few more changes were taken up. He stated that overall, he thought that the program had a coherent curricular design, appropriate content and rigor in its offerings, and institutional feasibility. He added that it met existing student demands and that there were clear commitments from the other schools involved. He stated that there was also a thorough external review that recommended the program. He stated that there was still a need for a more substantive description of courses that were not yet on the books, and for syllabi for the courses. He stated that there was also a need for specificity in terms of which faculty expected to be teaching, and some formal cleanup of the proposal presentation. He stated that the proposers got these items together quickly and fully, and that the program was approved unanimously.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for comments and recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor Bonine stated that he had been looking through the Board statement on Delegation of Authority, and had not yet found that the Board of Trustees needed to approve these programs. He stated that previously, approval of a program had gone from the State Board to the Higher Education Coordinating Committee, and that involving the Board was an additional step the University had never had before. He stated that he wanted to make sure that somebody would check to see if this was the case.
Senate President Kyr stated that he would get back to the Senate with clarification on Professor Bonine’s comment. There were no further comments on the motion, and it carried unanimously via voice vote.
Senate President Kyr asked those present to read the motion. After allowing time for the motion to be read, Senate President Kyr pointed out that Section 2.3 had been divided into two categories. He then asked Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan to give the motion. The motion was given and seconded by Senator Michael Price. Senate Vice President Sullivan then proceeded to provide background for the motion.
Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan (Chemistry) stated that the Senate Task Force on Sexual Assault had been doing great work, and that the intention of the motion was to empower them to do further great work. He stated that the original Task Force had several specific charges, and that the Standing Committee was intended to have a more general charge so that it could be effective moving forward.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for comments and recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor John Bonine (Law) respectfully requested that the Senate not spend time trying to amend the motion “to change the number of members of this or that category,” but instead pass it and move onto Student Conduct Code revisions.
An unidentified speaker moved to end the discussion.
Senate President Kyr asked if there were any objections, and recognized Associate Professor Jason Brown.
Associate Professor Jason Brown (Creative Writing) stated that he did not see how the Senate could look into sexual violence without looking into alcohol abuse. He explained that was his experience—both as a student, and in teaching for 17 years—that these two things were inextricably linked. He stated that there would be no progress on what actually happens to women on campus if the culture of alcohol abuse was not addressed.
Senate President Kyr asked Professor Carol Stabile to talk about the recommendation in the report related to alcohol abuse.
Professor Carol Stabile (School of Journalism and Communication & WGS) stated that the Task Force’s recommendation suggested that the President reboot the President's Task Force on Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse. She explained that this task force had come up with a number of excellent recommendations—some of which were implemented, many of which were not. She added that this issue was not just about alcohol abuse. She explained that one of the things that the Task Force had learned in its research was that there was a lot of evidence about perpetration that suggests that perpetrators are not drinking very much.
Senate President Kyr, hearing no objections, called the question. The motion carried unanimously.
Senate President Kyr invited the maker of the motion, Professor Bonine, to give the motion to the Senate.
Professor John Bonine (Law) gave the motion to the Senate, and the motion was seconded. He specified that he was only giving the part labeled “first” in yellow, which stated: “where sexual conduct is alleged, the complainant is entitled to the same opportunity as the accused student to have an advisor." He added that the Student Conduct Office agreed with this language.
Senate President Kyr invited discussion. None followed, and he called the question. The motion carried unanimously.
Senate President Kyr stated that part seven of Professor Bonine’s legislation was next on the agenda.
Professor John Bonine (Law) moved the motion.
Senator Jane Cramer (Political Science) offered a second.
Professor Bonine stated that this motion dealt with mediation being inappropriate for cases of sexual assault. He added that this had been recommended by the Office of Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education three and a half years ago, and by the Groves report a year ago. He read from the motion: "Mediation is encouraged [...] where appropriate, except for sexual misconduct involving unwanted penetration or nonconsensual personal contact as set out in OAR 571-02-0105 (30) (a) and (b), which shall not be subject to mediation." Professor Bonine added that this left the possibility that sexual harassment could be subject to mediation. He suggested that if people felt that sexual harassment should not be subject, the issue could be taken the up in January.
Senate President Kyr invited comments and questions. Seeing none, he called the question. The motion carried unanimously.
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would now consider part eight of the legislation.
Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan (Chemistry) offered a second.
Professor John Bonine (Law) stated that the first part of the legislation allowed for filing complaints against non-enrolled students. He explained that this allowed sanctions against students who continued as students, but who were not enrolled during the relevant quarter. He stated that the second part of the legislation required that the alleged perpetrator of sexual assault be notified of the complaint against them within ten calendar days, unless an extension was provided in writing by the Vice President of Student Life. He added that there was no time limit for the extension.
Senate President Kyr recognized Sandy Weintraub.
Sandy Weintraub (Director of Student Conduct and Community Standards) stated that with the extension process written into it, he was fine with the motion. He added that having extensions was important, because an extension might be necessary in situations involving active criminal investigations, where the notification of a student would be detrimental to the process. He stated that his only concern was that "complaint" was not defined. He explained that typically, an allegation is received by the Dean of Students Office, and the case is then investigated by an officer from the Office of Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity. At this point, he continued, the student who is being investigated is notified that there is an investigation. He emphasized that it was necessary to wait to receive the full investigation before sending a formal notice of allegation. He stated that he had no issue at all with having a ten-day period once the full investigation had been received. He expressed concern that there would not be enough time for a full investigation if the ten-day period applied to when an allegation was initially received.
Professor Bonine stated that the word "complaint" was everywhere in the Code, and that he had made no change to that. He also added that the text read: "…once the Office of Community Standards receives a complaint."
Sandy Weintraub stated that there was no such thing as an Office of Community Standards. He explained that it was the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards.
Professor Bonine stated that he understood this, and that it was not his fault that the language had been left this way for ten years.
Sandy Weintraub agreed with Professor Bonine.
Professor Bonine proposed changing the language to "Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards," and asked Sandy if he approved of the motion now that there was an extension.
Sandy Weintraub voiced his agreement.
Senate President Kyr requested further comments and questions. None followed, and a voice vote was held. The motion carried unanimously, and the Senate moved on to Part 9.
Professor John Bonine (Law)stated that this motion stipulated that "if a student withdraws after a complaint has been made, but before a decision is rendered, the transcript will be withheld." He explained that this was to prevent people from dropping out in order to avoid a formal complaint that has been filed against them. He stated that the second part of the motion was to remove the so-called “statute of limitations,” which currently required someone to complain within six months if they had been raped or assaulted.
Senate President Kyr recognized Sandy Weintraub.
Sandy Weintraub (Director of Student Conduct and Community Standards) stated that he thought the Registrar's Office should be consulted before this was enacted. He agreed with Professor Bonine that it was fine if this was done later.
Professor Bonine stated that there were still many opportunities to come back and tweak the Code if the Registrar's Office (or anyone else involved) had a problem with it.
Sandy Weintraub stated that he had no opposition to taking away the statute of limitations, but that it was also tremendously difficult to find someone responsible if they had been gone from the University for a great deal of time.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator John Davidson.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) asked if he was correct in understanding that the removal of the statute of limitations would apply if somebody was accused of misconduct outside of the state, with somebody who was not a community member at the University of Oregon. He asked if such a person could still be called into this process fifteen years after the fact.
Professor Bonine stated that Senator Davidson was correct in his understanding.
Senate President Kyr requested further comments. Seeing none, he called the question. The motion carried unanimously via voice vote. The Senate then moved to the second part of part nine (9B).
Professor Bonine read from the motion: "If either student retains a legal advisor, the other student is entitled to one funded by the University at no cost to the student, if he or she so chooses. The University will provide this assistance through reasonable reimbursement, through a contract with an organization, or through other arrangement." Professor Bonine explained that the current system allowed those accused of a violation to receive legal counsel through the ASUO's office, and that this offer did not extend to survivors. He explained that the ASUO does not represent people who have been wronged—only those who have been accused of violation. Professor Bonine stated that he suspected that there would be problems regarding the potential cost of this legislation from the Administration’s perspective.
Senate President Kyr stated that there was a procedural problem with dividing part nine, and suggested that Professor Bonine ask for a suspension of the rules so the Senate could consider this motion as an individual motion.
Professor Bonine explained that the division of part nine had been in place for months, and that he did not see any problem with referring to them as 9A and 9B, and voting on them separately.
Senate President Kyr, for the clarification of the body, reiterated that the Senate had just passed 9A and was now considering 9B. He invited comments and recognized Senator Reza Rajaie.
Senator Reza Rejaie (Computer & Information Science) asked if the language that read "if he or she so chooses" was redundant, noting that it previously stated that individuals were “entitled.” He noted that the redundancy did not change the meaning.
Professor Bonine suggested that the motion be left as is, and that the redundancy could be dealt with later.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Rich Margerum.
Senator Rich Margerum (Public Policy, Planning, and Management) asked if the ASUO had considered funding both parties and rejected it, or if they had discussed it at all.
Professor Bonine stated that the ASUO was very clear that they only represent people accused of violations.
Senate President Kyr recognized Sandy Weintraub.
Sandy Weintraub stated that he firmly supported equity of representation in this process, but that he also thought it was very dangerous to codify that advisors are attorneys. He stated that the student conduct system was not designed to be a secondary legal process. He added that, in his experience, bringing in attorneys trained outside of the Student Conduct Process made the process unproductive, and did not serve survivors. He stated that passing this motion as is was would discourage people from coming forward. He reiterated that codifying attorneys in a system that is not part of the legal process was not going to serve anybody.
Professor Bonine stated that attorneys are already potentially part of the process. He stated that if the Senate wanted to get rid of attorneys, that that would involve a different approach that had not been proposed here. He stated that until that was proposed, he wanted equality.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Carol Stabile.
Professor Carol Stabile stated that she saw Sandy’s point, but that she thought that this motion was necessary to make it equitable. She pointed out that the Groves Report flagged this as a real problem that needed to be addressed.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senate Vice President Sullivan.
Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan (Chemistry) stated that this actually provided an opportunity for the Administration to work with a cadre of lawyers who were trained to deal with sexual assault cases handled through administrative processes. He stated that it provided an opportunity to fix a broken system, because a lawyer trained in this way would have the ability to keep the process on track.
Senate President Kyr recognized Sandy Weintraub.
Sandy Weintraub disagreed that the motion would fix what was broken. He stated that the legislation was asking the University to do something that it was not equipped to do correctly. He stated that he was concerned that lawyers would become a codified part of the process, and that it would be damaging.
Senate President Kyr recognized University Ombudsperson, Bruce MacAllister.
Bruce MacAllister (University Ombudsperson) stated that the amendment was fundamentally based on a faulty premise. He explained that in criminal law, it is not the victim that is responsible for prosecuting their case against the alleged perpetrator—it is the State's responsibility. In a student justice system, he continued, it is the University taking action to enforce its own rules. He stated that he completely supported the idea that victims needed additional resources and advice, and he thought this could be provided through additional services to survivors of assault in a more cogent way. He stated that he tended to support Sandy in the sense that infusing attorneys into the system inadvertently modifies the expectations of what the system intends to do.
Senate President Kyr asked for the meeting to be extended fifteen minutes. The body agreed to the extension.
Professor Bonine explained that the Senate was not discussing a criminal process, and that therefore, a prosecutorial model should not be followed. He stated that the University could not be in the position of both adjudicating and, in a sense, prosecuting. He stated that the motion allowed for victims to have some advice, and that it said nothing about lawyers going to do the arguing. He reiterated that the motion referred to an advisor. He stated that under the current system, one side could have a lawyer helping them figure out the strategy, and the other side could not. He reiterated that the motion was about providing equality.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator John Ahlen.
Senator John Ahlen (International Affairs) reminded that Senate that the GTFF was patiently waiting for the Open Discussion.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Carol Stabile.
Professor Carol Stabile stated that if a student is being stalked, and the student’s stalker is being provided legal counsel, it does not build trust in the institution to say: "Well, I don't know why your stalker is being defended by ASUO, but you don't have legal counsel." She stated that something needed to be done if trust in the institution was to be rebuilt.
Sandy Weintraub stated that someone had just been hired, within the Law School, who was designed specifically to fill the role that Professor Stabile had described.
Professor Bonine pointed out that this was covered in the text when it said: "or through other arrangement." He stated that it was completely within the discretion of the Administration to fulfill its responsibility this way. He then suggested that a vote on the motion be taken.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator John Davidson.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) stated that the language of the motion referred to a "student." He stated that his understanding was that the Conduct Code did not require the alleged victim to be a student. He asked if the legal representation was to be meant for non-students.
Professor Bonine stated that it was not. He stated that the University had a responsibility, in this instance, to help only students.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) called the question. The vote carried.
Senate President Kyr then called for a vote on the motion. He reminded the Senators that the motion being considered was 9B, and that 9A had already been approved. The motion carried unanimously.
5. OPEN DISCUSSION
Senate President Kyr recognized Jonathan Turbin.
Jonathan Turbin stated that he was speaking as a Graduate Teaching Fellow and fourth year Ph.D student in Anthropology, as well as the Vice President of Organizing for the Graduate Teaching Fellows Federation. He stated that the GTFF President, Joe Henry, could not be present because he was in Washington D.C. meeting with Congressman Peter DeFazio about the strike. Jonathan stated that he was speaking in order to thank the Faculty Senate, who had moved to protect the quality of education offered at the University of Oregon. He stated that doing so exemplified the democratic and Oregonian value of shared governance. He went on to explain that, as a GTF, he lead discussion sections, held office hours, and graded papers and exams for Introduction to World Cultures. He stated that this meant that he had come to know the individual quirks, learning styles, and names of up to 100 students per term. He stated that he learned that Kevin was shy and taciturn—but that he opened up if he had time to write out and prepare his thoughts—and that Vanessa was brilliant and thoughtful, but that she spoke English as a second language, and therefore needed some reasonable accommodations. In short, he continued, GTFs come to care about their students. He stated that he was fully ready to walk over to his office, boot up his laptop, log onto Blackboard, meet with students, and help the undergraduates catch up. He stated that if the Administration and GTFF bargaining teams reached a deal the following day, he would hold extended office hours, hold supplemental exam prep sessions, and proctor the World Cultures final exam. He stated that he would also hold the last set of discussion sections for that class. He stated that the University still had a chance to allow the GTFs to make up for lost time and lost work, and that all that was needed was a fair contract. He invited those present to join the GTFF's end-of-day rally at Johnson Hall. He closed by stating that the GTFF fully embraced the creation of a Faculty Senate Task Force to protect academics during current and future strikes.
Senate President Kyrcalled the December 3, 2014 meeting of the University Senate to a close at 5:15 p.m.
Present: Paul Dassonville, Miriam Deutsch, Jennifer Freyd, Jun Li, Michael Price, Reza Rejaie, Randy Sullivan, Jane Cramer, John Davidson, Michael Dreiling, William Harbaugh, Bruce McGough, Jason Brown, Colin Koopman, Geraldine Poizat-Newcomb, Regina Psaki, Gordon Sayre, Donna Shaw, Ron Lovinger, Richard Margerum, Charles Lachman, Debra Merskin, Mary Ann Hyatt, Victoria Mitchell, Edward Teague, Robin Clement, Jennifer Ellis, Alexandre Dossin, Robert Kyr, Monique Balbuena, David Espinoza, Lisa Raleigh, Debra Thurman, Abel Cerros, Samantha Cohen, Quin Haaga, Andrew Lubash, John Ahlen, Theodora Ko Thompson, Jimmy Murray, Mike Strain
Absent: Ken Prehoda, Diane Dugaw, Laura Leete, Jerry Rosiek, Kate Klosno
Excused: Weiyong He, Deborah Healey, Marilyn Nippold
1. CALL TO ORDER
Senate President Robert Kyr (Music) called the November 19, 2014 meeting of the University of Oregon Senate to order at 3:00 p.m. in room 115 Lawrence Hall. He thanked the Senate and guests for their attendance, and noted that there was a great deal of excitement about the meeting because the Chair of the Board of Trustees, Chuck Lillis, would be addressing the Senate and the campus community.
2. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES
Senate President Kyr asked the Senate to consider the minutes of October 22nd, 2014. He requested comments and corrections related to the minutes. None were put forward, and the minutes were approved.
3. STATE OF THE UNIVERSITY
3.1 Remarks by Interim President Scott Coltrane with questions
Senate President Kyr stated that at this time, the Senate would move to the State of the University Address, which would be delivered by Interim President Scott Coltrane. He added that there would be time for questions following Interim President Coltrane's remarks.
Interim President Scott Coltrane began by stating that he was honored to welcome the Chair of the UO Board of Trustees, Chuck Lillis, who would be speaking shortly. He added that in view of the Senate’s busy agenda, he hoped to keep his remarks short.
He stated that the items he wished to touch on included: the University’s Mission Statement and the way in which it related to the campus-wide strategic planning effort; federal higher education research funding; issues relating to sexual assault, the GTFF bargaining, and Open Meetings legislation; and the relaunching of the campaign for an on-campus audience. He stated that all of these issues carried some urgency, and added that he felt the need to touch on all of them.
Interim President Coltrane noted that the Mission Statement revision had been made available and stated that the University was committed to exceptional teaching, discovery, and service. He asserted that within the “competitive excellence” framework, the University needed to improve its metrics and its national and international standing.
Next, he offered an update on the strategic planning effort. He stated that there would be a list of task force groups on the Provost's website within the next couple of days. He added that these four task force groups were designed to look at parts of the University's near-term and long-term strategic objectives, which included: attracting high quality, diverse students and promoting student access, retention, and success; elevating research, scholarship and creative profile including expanding graduate education; attracting and retaining high quality, diverse faculty and staff; and enhancing physical and IT infrastructure to ensure academic excellence. He stated that each task force would have twelve to fourteen members, including: four or five faculty, two students, one classified staff member, one or two OA's, and four or five administrators. He added that the members were sought by nomination, and that some were representatives from the relevant Senate standing committees. He stated that the kick-off for the task force groups would be held the next evening at the McMorran House, and that the final rosters would be made available. He stated that the task force groups were going to be part of the switchboard for getting other campus input into the process, but that they would not be making the final decisions, per se. He stated that each of the committees would be chaired, jointly, by one faculty member and one administrator, adding that the administrator would bring staffing to the committee.
Interim President Coltrane proceeded with an update on federal funding. He commented that the Oregon delegation was exceptionally supportive, and that he had met most them while they were in Eugene campaigning. He added that the midterm elections saw Ryan Zinke, a geology major who graduated from UO in 1984, elected to represent Montana in Congress.
He noted that the federal budget, which is hugely important to the University, was expiring. He explained that each year, the University receives more than 180 million dollars from the Federal Government—mostly in the form of financial aid to students, as well as almost 100 million dollars in federal research dollars. He stated that, taken together, this amounted to about six times the funding the University receives from the state government. He stated that the University was working with the delegation to ensure that its interests were met. He added that the University was also working with other organizations—including the APLU and the AAU—who have a very strong advocacy effort at the federal level. He stated that the Portland Business Alliance and the Eugene and Springfield Chambers of Commerce had recently become members of a business coalition for federal research funding, and that this was important because the Federal Government had backed away from funding basic science. He added that the University needed the Federal Government to reinvest, and stated that there had been some misguided efforts to undermine how important federal funding was for universities.
Addressing the subject of sexual assault, Interim President Coltrane stated that he wanted to update the Senate on the recommendation of the Senate Task Force concerning the Ombuds Program. He stated that the University had consulted with the Ombuds Program and the General Counsel, and that he had commissioned outside legal advice to help iron out their differences. He stated that he believed the University now had an opinion that gave it a way forward, and that the Ombuds Program and the General Counsel were working to craft legislation that the Board of Trustees would look at. He stated that the legislation would work to change the relevant Oregon Administrative Rules and the charter for the Ombuds Office. He stated that this would enable the University to launch a fully functional Ombuds Office that would have the best practices regarding confidentiality, and would fulfill the University's reporting obligations. He stated that he thought the process was going well.
Continuing with his update on sexual assault, Interim President Coltrane stated that that Professor Jennifer Freyd and a group of national experts on sexual violence were pushing back against the AAU survey. He stated he would be meeting with Professor Freyd to discuss this issue, and that he would also be speaking with the AAU. He stated that the University had not yet made any decisions, but that it would be looking at what the best practice was, what the campus would do, and what kind of data it would be getting regarding the campus climate. He added that he thought campus climate surveys were a great idea, and that the University just needed to figure out the best way forward.
Interim President Coltrane also stated that he was still awaiting the results of the President's Review Panel and the gap analysis from Student Life. He reminded those present that these would be available during the last week of the term. He added that, during Winter Term, he planned to have a series of discussions with the Senate and with student groups about how the University could have a comprehensive campaign to address sexual assault prevention.
Regarding the GTFF bargaining, Interim President Coltrane indicated that the latest information was available on the Provost’s website. He stated that the University had made considerable movement in mediation over the last week, but that their offer had not been accepted by the GTFF. He added that there were still opportunities for mediation, and maintained that the University wanted to avoid a strike. He expressed concern that people were receiving misinformation regarding the Administration's position, and reiterated that the Administration had moved considerably. He also noted that members of the faculty had approached him about wanting to get involved in the bargaining. He explained that although he thought it was important for everyone to be able to state their own positions on the matter, bargaining was not something done by unit members. He stated that bargaining was handled by administrative teams that are not members of bargaining units, and that it was important to keep these things separate. He added that the Administration would provide financial resources and support to faculty members to help with their classes in the event of a strike. He stated that the Administration's first obligation was to the students, adding that it was important for the students to get their grades, and that the Administration did not want to jeopardize their financial awards. He went on to say that the Administration was under great pressure—including from State Collective Bargaining laws—to operate at the bargaining table, and not outside of that process. He added that the Administration was still hopeful that the mediation would result in an agreement.
Addressing the Senate legislation that called for all Standing Senate Committees to have open meetings, Interim President Coltrane stated that he needed to ask the Senate to modify the time limits associated with the Open Meetings legislation such that the Committee on Committees would have time to complete its work on the matter. He noted that the legislation was originally intended to be applied Fall Term. He stated that the Committee on Committees was meeting with subgroups including the FAC (Faculty Advisory Council), the SBC (Senate Budget Committee), and the FPC (Faculty Personnel Committee), and that all three of these groups had arguments regarding whether they should be subject to the open meetings rule. He stated that the Committee on Committees was reviewing this, and that it would be making a recommendation. He added that unforeseen events—including the Presidential shift—had kept the Committee on Committees from addressing these concerns. Interim President Coltrane stated that he had sent a memo to the President of the Senate, as specified in the Constitution, asking for an extension of the timeframe so that the Senate Committee could do its work and make a recommendation to the full Senate, and then to the President.
Regarding the fundraising campaign, Interim President Coltrane stated that the University had invited many of its top donors to a very extravagant and uplifting event. He stated that part of that event involved faculty demonstrating to the donors what the University was doing academically, and how it could achieve a lot more with their private investment. He stated that the University would be taking a similar type of presentation to cities across the U.S. in order to see how much money it could earn toward its goal of two billion dollars. He explained that the University wanted to double, or triple, its endowment so that it could have financial security in the future. He stated that Connie Ballmer and her husband had recently given 50 million dollars to the University: 25 million dollars for PathwayOregon; 20 million dollars for health promotion cluster hire (enough to hire 3 to 5 faculty); and five million dollars for a branding initiative that would be rolled out after the first of the year. He stated that the University would be working the firm 160over90 for its branding initiative, adding that they also represent UCLA, Notre Dame, and the University of Florida. He stated that they do a great job branding academics, recruiting private giving, and recruiting the best students. He stated that the University wanted the branding initiative to be funded by private gifts, and that Connie Ballmer's generosity helped the University do that. He added that five million dollars was not enough to sustain the effort, and that UCLA spent about the same amount every year. He stated that the University needed to be selling itself in the same way.
Interim President Coltrane explained that just six percent of the University's operating budget came from state funding, and that the University had to rely more on private giving as a consequence. He stated that the branding initiative was focused on conveying that fact. He added that he wanted to give a special thanks to all of the faculty who were involved in the branding efforts, and stated that the branding was really about what University did in its labs, in its classrooms, with its scholarships, for its students, and for the State of Oregon. He stated that the University was the innovator for the state, and that it had to sell that to the Legislature so that it could increase the six percent to (hopefully) something double that.
Interim President Coltrane closed his remarks and stated that he would take a few questions before the Senate heard from Board Chair, Chuck Lillis.
An unidentified speaker indicated that she had multiple questions. First, she stated that she questioned the University's priorities, explaining that she felt that research and athletics were prioritized over education and that the University’s money was being wasted on legal teams and scabs, rather than on the GTFs’ cost of living and living conditions. She stated that she questioned what Joan Acker would think about flexible paternity hours, rather than actual paternity leave. She continued that she questioned the academic standards of a University that believed that a scab would be able to grade her 12-page research paper comparing different theorists, explaining that she thought only her GTFs were prepared for that. She stated that she questioned the motives for discriminating against women and families—and why it was allowed—even though it went against everything that the Interim President had researched as an academic. She stated that she questioned (here she stated that this was the question that she would like the Interim President to respond to) why any woman would ever come to the University if the Administration failed to protect them against sexual violence and actively discriminated against them in their efforts to be graduate students and family women at the same time. She asked that Interim President Coltrane specifically address why women should come to the University. Lastly, she stated that she would have gotten her degree from Lane Community College if it were possible, because she felt that her money would have been better spent there than at the University. She stated that her comment on the GTF contract negotiations “in words that everyone here understands” was: "Just Do It."
Interim President Coltrane stated that he appreciated that the speaker had some assumptions about what was going on; he added that he challenged many of the premises of the things that she had said. He stated that the University did not discriminate against women, and that the mandatory, flexible time off that the Administration was putting on the table was a better benefit than almost all of the University's peers offered. He stated that serving undergraduates was very important to the University, but that research, equal opportunity and protecting students was also important. He suggested that the discussion could be continued later and invited more questions.
Debra (full name not provided) asked if the “mandatory time off” referred to the FMLA.
Interim President Coltrane explained that in the latest mediation session with the GTFF, a guaranteed, flexible two weeks leave was put on the table to meet students' needs, and that it was rejected. He suggested that Debra visit the Provost's website to see what the University had offered. He then thanked those present and ceded the podium.
Senate President Kyr thanked Interim President Coltrane for his remarks and for taking questions. He stated that he wanted to clarify that the Senate was not involved in Collective Bargaining (in accordance with labor law and other strictures that govern Collective Bargaining). He stated that the Senate would hear from the Chairman of the Board of Trustees next.
3.2 Remarks by Chuck Lillis, Chair of the UO Board of Trustees with questions
Senate President Kyr thanked Chuck Lillis for making a special trip to the University from his home out of state specifically to address the Senate and the members of the campus community regarding University priorities. Senate President Kyr asked that those in attendance listen intensely to what Dr. Lillis was going to communicate to the Senate. He stated that the Senate was in the process of forming a constructive and meaningful relationship with the Board of Trustees, and that Dr. Lillis' commitment to communicating with the Senate was very important to the evolution of that relationship. He stated that the presentation would take half an hour and that there would be time for questions afterward. He added that Dr. Lillis would be making proposals about what the Senate could do to help the University in partnership with the Board. He stated that the Senate Executive Committee would look at the proposals and provide the Senate with definite ideas on how to further its relationship with the Board and serve the highest interests of the University. With that, Senate President Kyr welcomed Chuck Lillis to speak.
Chair of the UO Board of Trustees, Chuck Lillis stated that he appreciated the opportunity to speak with the Senate, and added that he had been serving as the Chair of the Board of Trustees for about a year. He stated that he wanted to encourage the Senate to work with the Administration and the Board in a collegial, positive way on the serious problems that the University faced.
Before speaking on these issues, Dr. Lillis took a moment to assure the Senate that he was committed to shared governance. He elaborated on this by stating that he was an absolute supporter of shared governance when was done well, and not such a big supporter when it was dysfunctional. He stated that he believed shared governance was dysfunctional when it was based on confrontation, but that it could be very powerful when it was based on a shared commitment to shared problems and issues. He appealed to the Senate to approach the complicated problems that the University faced in a collegial, shared, respectful, and professional manner. He added that he believed that the University of Oregon was a good university—but not a great one—and that he believed it had the potential to be great. He asserted that the present moment was a seminal one for the University, and that it could decide now whether it would be good, or great. He stated that solving some of the problems he was about to outline would enable the University to move from good to great.
Dr. Lillis reminded those in attendance that the University was looking for a new President. He stated that the Search Committee had met with four different consultants who assist in searches, and that every one of those firms said—unprompted—that the University of Oregon had a bad national reputation as a place where the faculty and the administration do not get along. He stated that this reputation could harm the search for a president, and added that he was personally embarrassed by it. He stated that this was a problem that needed to be fixed, and that the members of the University community had a responsibility to recognize that their behaviors had consequences. He stated that the University could not have an adversarial image and be a great university at the same time.
Dr. Lillis stated that the first major problem the University faced was that it was financially weak. He stated that the University’s operating budget was a little under one billion dollars a year, and that about 50 million of that came from the state. He stated that resident undergraduate students pay for about 83 percent of the cost of their education, and that the rest was subsidized with non-resident tuition, gifts, and overhead on research grants. He stated that the single most telling statistic in this regard was that the University spent about 30 thousand dollars a year per student to deliver its educational mission, while schools like UCLA, Michigan, and Washington spent at least twice that number. He stated that in terms of the amount spent on each student, the University ranked last amongst the public AAU universities. He stated that moving the University of Oregon out of last place would require an increase in the operating budget of about three hundred million dollars per year. He stated that if the University was going to fill that gap, it would have to rely heavily on private money.
He stated that the second problem the University faced was that the tenure-track faculty population was undersized by perhaps 130 to 150 positions. He stated that the University taught roughly twice as many undergraduate student credit hours with non-tenure-track faculty as its AAU peers, and that this was a result of the financial state of the University. He added that over the last ten years, the University had seen a 20 to 25 percent growth in enrollment while having a zero net increase in tenure-track faculty positions. He stated that hiring 130 to 150 faculty would require roughly one billion endowed dollars.
He stated that the third problem facing the University was that its student quality—while increasingly good—was not as good as its AAU peers. He stated his belief that out of the top three or four hundred high school graduates in the state, more graduates went to other local institutions than came to UO. He explained that one of the problems in this regard was that the University had a very low discount rate. He stated that the University's discount rate was 9.2%, and that a competitive number was probably 16 or 17%.
He stated that the fourth problem facing the University was a very low level of knowledge on the part of Oregonians regarding what the University is about, and what it does. He observed that the public had a difficult time explaining what doing research means, and how it benefits them. As an example of the general lack of understanding, he stated that a recent survey had shown that three percent of Oregonians believe that the University has a medical school. He stated that the University was figuring out how to tell the world that it is a great university, and that they were spending money to do so—as all universities do. He added that it was not surprising that state divestment had occurred, given the general lack of public understanding.
Dr. Lillis stated that the fifth problem facing the University was that the process of approving new or changed academic programs was ridiculously long. He estimated that for every one person proposing a change (e.g., adding a degree, changing a major, creating a new discipline, creating a certificate program, etc.) there were about one hundred people who felt the responsibility—or need for authority—to review. He stated that this was a bad ratio if the University expected to move forward in a timely manner. He added that he thought the University was in its current state because of distrust, and that the most common reason for distrust was incompetence. He stated that there had been a series of decisions that—in retrospect—were not correct, which prompted the State Board of Higher Education, the University, the Governor, the Legislature, and everyone else involved to mitigate that distrust by adding more checks and reviews. He stated that this was tragic, and that it would not be possible for UO to be a great university if each person continued to hold that is his or her role to question every other decision.
He added that the need to check and review was further exacerbated by a lack of a sense of urgency. He stated that this was particularly costly now, because the University had a unique opportunity to reshape itself, and that doing so required the University to move swiftly and intelligently. He stated that the University had to find a way to instill a sense of urgency in itself.
Dr. Lillis stated that the sixth problem was that the University’s endowment was currently about 700 million dollars, and that it needed to be about two billion dollars in order to be competitive. He stated that if the University could get the endowment to two billion, it would be in roughly the top ten or fifteen public universities in the country. He added that it would allow the University to be competitive in the sense of having a strong balance sheet, risk capital to invest, and the flexibility to hire unique faculty members. As an example, he stated that the University of Puget Sound has 2,600 students and a 350 million dollar endowment compared to UO, which has 26,000 students and only a 700 million dollar endowment. He conceded that University of Puget Sound was a private school (they typically have larger endowments), but asserted that UO was also a private school in a financial sense. He reiterated that if the University could get the endowment to two billion dollars, it would have a real chance to do some unique things for the quality of the academic activities. He added that the main reason he agreed to be the Chair of the Board of Trustees was because he had a passion for the University to improve its academic quality.
He stated that the seventh problem was that the University had experienced a disastrous churn at the Presidential level. He stated that this was problematic because it was expensive in terms of continuity of strategy, raising funds, and in terms of the University's relationship with external organizations. He stated that an indicator of the sense of urgency the Board felt was that it was going ahead with the two billion dollar Capital Campaign without a permanent President. He added that there were not a lot of universities that would have made that decision, and explained that the Board had done so because it thought it was urgent that the University get moving, and because it was happy with the current leadership team that existed at the University.
He stated that the eighth problem was that the University needed a new major science facility. He explained that if the University was successful in hiring 50 new tenure-track science professors, there would not be enough laboratory space, classroom space, or office space to accommodate them. He added that such a facility might cost three or four hundred million dollars, and that it would have to be funded one hundred percent by gift money.
He stated that the ninth problem the University faced was that its IT backbone infrastructure desperately needed to be upgraded for research, instruction, and administration. He stated that many sciences were moving into paradigms in which "big data analysis" was required, and that the current IT infrastructure was inadequate for these pursuits. He stated that he did not know how much it was going to cost to upgrade the IT infrastructure, and that there was a need to get a plan in place so the Board could find the help necessary to realize it.
He stated that there were many other things the Board worried about, including sexual violence, student and faculty conduct, where to invest money in the foundation, and the role of athletics. He acknowledged that the Senate had put in a lot of time and work on all kinds of important problems, but also asked the Senators (referring to nine problems he outlined): “Are you doing anything that helps [the University] address these mega tough problems?” He conceded that some of the problems were things that the Senate could not do anything about, except to stay out of the way while the Board tried to solve them. He noted, however, that there were things that the Senate could take on, and he encouraged the members of the Senate to challenge him, the leadership of the Senate, the Administration, the Deans, and also to ask themselves: "I'm going to spend a zillion hours. What should I be spending them on?" Without being specific, he stated that some of the things that time was being spent on were “not the right answer.” He reiterated the importance of working together in a civilized, respectful, collegial, and professional manner, and remaining mindful that there are consequences for the University's behaviors.
Lillis closed his remarks by stating that he had two degrees from the University of Washington, and that he was thrilled each year when they were ranked as one of the top 50 universities in the world. He stated that he wanted to feel that good about the University of Oregon, and that he did not like seeing UO ranked 92nd, 104th, or 86th. He stated that the UO was better than that, and asked those present to attack the problems the University faced and help it become great. With that, he welcomed questions.
An unidentified speaker, recalling Dr. Lillis’ comment that four search companies had described the relationship between the University Administration and the faculty as contentious, asked him if they had communicated what they were basing that perception on.
Chuck Lillis stated that they were not explicit about it, and added that he had heard similar perceptions previously. He stated that it was the wrong image for the University to have.
Professor Nathan Tublitz (Biology) thanked Dr. Lillis for coming and speaking to the Senate, and for sharing the problems that he believed the University faced. Professor Tublitz added that he thought many of the faculty had a similar list of perceived problems. He stated that the most important thing at a university was the quality of the faculty, and that the faculty are the brain trust of a university. He added that the faculty are also the standard-bearers, and the holders of academic integrity. He asked Dr. Lillis if he would consider reaching out to the faculty in a way that indicates a “deep, shared tradition” rather than a “management versus labor situation.” He asserted that this would allow the brain trust of the University to help in achieving the goals of the Board and of the University community. He added that he personally believed that if the Board did not reach out in this way, the University was doomed to failure.
Chuck Lillis stated that he loved the question, and that he was personally trying very hard to do exactly what Professor Tublitz had requested. He added that he had been meeting with groups of faculty to have an unstructured exchange of ideas. He stated that he had learned a great deal from these meetings, and added that Interim President Coltrane, Acting Provost Frances Bronet, and others were anxious to have these interchanges, as well. He agreed that there was an enormous amount of brainpower in the faculty that could help address the issues and the opportunities that the University faced. He added that he was available to meet with any individual or group.
Professor John Bonine (Law) suggested to Dr. Lillis that he consult with Senate President Kyr and faculty bodies to get some recommendations regarding people who might meet with him. He explained that this was important in the context of shared governance, and in changing what may be perceived as confrontational activities. He stressed that these recommendations needed to come from the shared governance bodies. Professor Bonine stated that he was very impressed by the current Presidential Administration's willingness to come to the Senate meetings, and also by Board members who had come to speak to the Senate. He suggested that each Board member could rotate through visiting the Senate on a weekly basis or every other week. He stated that this would help the Senate get to know the Board members and help Board members understand that the Senate is not as dysfunctional as they might have been lead to believe.
Chuck Lillis thanked Professor Bonine, and stated that the groups of faculty he had met with had been coordinated by a faculty member who—at one point—had been a member of the Senate. He added that the individuals he had met with were a very wide mix of senior and junior faculty. He stated that he would discuss with the Board some sort of routine visit on the part of the Board members, adding that he thought that a lot of Trustees would like to visit. He cautioned the Senate that not many of the Trustees had the depth of background in academia that he did, and that many were still in a learning phase. Nevertheless, he stated that the Board had enormous passion, was willing to work, and would be good for the University.
An unidentified speaker stated that he agreed that the University was not a public institution, and asked if there was any way to address this problem. He added that he did not think there were any public institutions have left in the United States. He also stated that he thought it would be great to hire more science tenured faculty, but voiced concern that this would focus on growth as opposed to quality.
Chuck Lillis stated that the University's current enrollment level left it short about 130 to 150 tenure-track faculty. He added that he was not in charge of how large the enrollment should be, but stated that it was based on a very delicately-balanced financial model. He stated that he thought that the University needed a healthier graduate student enrollment, as well.
In response to an inaudible comment from the speaker, Dr. Lillis stated that many institutions were in exactly the same financial position as UO. He stated that percentage-wise, the University of Colorado received a little more each year than did UO. He stated that Washington and Arizona were also very similar to UO in this regard.
In response to a second inaudible comment, Dr. Lillis stated that tuition was not the root of all the problems, but also that it used to be the case that a student could make enough money over the summer to pay for the next year of college. He stated that this raised the fundamental question: "Is higher education unreasonably expensive?" He stated that he did not know the answer, but added that he was not sure that the financial model currently in use among universities like UO would work in the future.
An undergraduate student identifying himself as Casey stated that he was having issues reconciling who he was supposed to look to regarding the GTF situation. He reminded Dr. Lillis that he had said the University needed higher enrollment for graduate students, but also noted that the Administration had been sending out backhanded emails earlier in the week regarding the GTF negotiations. He stated that there was a lot of information being passed around and that there was no clear source for it. He asked Dr. Lillis how he would suggest undergrads go about handling this situation, adding that it was not a healthy educational environment, and that he did not feel that he was getting the best education possible. He stated that this problem was not financial, and asserted that it was rooted in the dissonance between the Administration and the graduate students. He asked when the University would stop looking at "good by comparison" and start looking at "adequate" for the student body.
Chuck Lillis apologized and stated that he did not know the answer. He explained that the Board was not involved in any of the negotiations, and that the responsibility had been allocated entirely to the Administration of the University.
An unidentified speaker commented that Jim Collins had written a book called "From Good to Great," which talked about how settling for "good enough" could be the greatest enemy of "great." He stated that the University was looking to UCLA and its other peers, and comparing itself against what they were doing, and the money that they were spending. He asserted that this constituted settling for "good enough" amongst UO's peers. He also stated that, in regards to the GTF bargaining, the University was settling for "good enough," or the minimum to be amongst the good and the great. He acknowledged that there was a place for balance and context, but asked when the University was going to start looking at being cutting edge, and finding its own path as a university. He asked when the University was going to make a decision to be a University that other universities would look to, instead of playing catch-up.
Chuck Lillis stated that he would give what was perhaps a biased answer, adding that he did not want to talk about the GTF in particular. He stated that he did not think that UO should to compare itself directly to other Universities to determine how to become more academically excellent. He stated that he did not think UO should compare itself with UCLA, Michigan, Stanford, etc., because he did not think UO would ever have the money to be competitive in as many academic areas as those universities. He stated that the challenge was for the University to pick the areas of excellence in which the University could afford to be internationally competitive. With that, Dr. Lillis also stated that he thought UO had to be a comprehensive research university. He stated that the athletics program was a great model of the areas of excellence idea on campus.
Associate Professor Jason Brown (Creative Writing) stated that he never saw the level of communication between the various levels of governance at University of Arizona (his previous employer) that he was seeing in Chuck Lillis' willingness to speak to the faculty Senate. He stated that at the University of Arizona, he witnessed a total lack of communication between the various levels of governance, and very little understanding—on the part of the faculty—of the challenges faced by the leadership of the University. He added that this was understandable considering their focus on the classroom. He stated that he loved the idea of small groups meeting with Board members, and of Board members coming to speak with the Senate, but asked if there might be more comprehensive ways of increasing communication flow between the various levels of governance so that there could be an increased level of understanding. He stressed the importance of increasing the understanding between not just the Trustees and the faculty, but also with the students.
Chuck Lillis stated that he thought this was a great challenge to all of the leaders in the room. He added that one of the problems was that it is very hard for an individual faculty member to understand the quagmire of regulation, finance, history, and protocol that any university operates in; and that it is also pretty hard for administrators or executives, if they have not been a faculty member, to understand the life of a faculty member.
An undergraduate student, who introduced himself as Sean, stated that he was from California. He noted that there had been a lot of talk about the UC system in comparison to UO, and a lot of talk about increasing Oregon's international prominence and bringing in better students. He stated that a lot of people tend to forget that this could result in UO turning its back on Oregonians, adding that he believed this was what happened in the UC schools. He stated that he did not even apply to any UC schools because he strongly believed that they had turned their backs on Californians. He asked Dr. Lillis how he was going to make sure that UO—which he pointed out was originally a land grant university meant for Oregonians who would pay taxes to it—would not turn its back on Oregonians.
Chuck Lillis stated that it was a great question and asked Sean for his year and major.
Sean stated that he was a third year Political Science major.
Chuck Lillis stated that the two billion dollar capital campaign that Mike Andreasen, Scott Coltrane, Frances Bronet, and others were conducting had one of the three major thrusts directed toward student access. He explained that this was code for “financial aid,” and that perhaps 300 million of the two billion was aimed at resident Oregon students. He stated that this would be 200 million more than the University currently had dedicated to Oregon students. He added that one of the Trustees, Rudy Chapa, had informed the Board about a program at the University of Texas, Austin, which created an integrated management effort for everything that impacts the success of an undergraduate—financial aid, available coursework, emotional counseling, housing etc.—with the goal of increasing student success. He stated that Rudy brought a similar idea to the Board, and that the Board members were using it as an idea to further enhance the opportunity for Oregon residents. He also noted that the University of California system was arguably the best in the world, and that he was amazed that they were thinking about breaking themselves up.
Hearing no other questions, Chuck Lillis closed by thanking the Senate for having him.
Senate President Kyr thanked Dr. Lillis and expressed the Senate's appreciation of his commitment to the University. He reiterated that the Senate would be partnering with him, and discussing the most effective ways to move the University forward.
4. NEW BUSINESS
4.1 Announcement by Andrew Bonamici, Associate Dean for Media and Instructional Services, UO Libraries
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would now move on to new business. He welcomed Associate Dean for Media and Instructional Services, Andrew Bonamici, to give an announcement.
Associate Dean Andrew Bonamici (Media and Instructional Services) stated that he was speaking on behalf of the Learning Management System Task Force. He stated that the Senate had heard reports from this task force repeatedly through the last academic year, and that he would be bringing the Senate up-to-date on the process of reviewing and selecting a new learning management system before September 30th, 2015 (when the current Blackboard license is due to expire). He stated that following an extensive review that included nearly 100 faculty and GTFs, dozens of staff, and nearly 2,000 students, the Task Force was very pleased to be able to move forward with the Task Force's number one recommendation: Canvas by Instructure. He stated that he would go over some of the findings from the LMS review and the pilot phase of the review process.
He stated that the pilot testing indicated that Canvas was going to save faculty, GTF, and student time, as well as enhance student engagement in ways that may lead to improved learning outcomes. He stated that the faculty, GTFs, and students who piloted the Canvas system rated it very positively for its friendly and easy to learn interface, gradebook features, email communications and notifications, overall navigation, and speed grader functionality. He added that: 80% of the faculty and GTFs who tested Canvas recommended that the University switch platforms; 80% of the faculty and GTFs who tested Canvas rated it as better than previous systems they had used; 89% of faculty and GTFs were satisfied, or extremely satisfied, with Canvas; 75% of faculty and GTFs who tested Canvas agreed that Canvas made their teaching more efficient; 52% of the students who tested Canvas agreed that Canvas helped them become more engaged with course content; and 44% of the students agreed that it saved them time, and that it helped them learn course content more effectively.
Addressing the transition to Canvas, he stated that the Task Force anticipated that it would be available for live courses beginning Spring Term, 2015. He stated that Blackboard and Canvas would be fully supported throughout the transition period, and that the Task Force would be releasing the Canvas blog for implementation and transition details as they become available. He recognized that the transition to Canvas represented a very significant change in a critical system for students, GTFs, faculty, and staff, and stated that the LMS team in the UO Libraries was ramping up support to and help with the transition. He added that there were GTF positions—funded by the fiscal year 2015 strategic budget request process— to assist with the transition, and also that the Task Force was in the process of redesigning some permanent staff positions concentrating on course development and course design that would make the most effective use of the features of the Canvas platform. He stated that these support programs were being developed in active collaboration with partners in the Teaching Effectiveness Program, the Schools and Colleges, Information Services, Academic Extension, and many more throughout the campus. He invited those present to seek further information about what the transition might look like, as well as how to find help and support.
With that, Andrew Bonamici thanked those present for taking part in the decision to move to Canvas. He extended a special thanks to the LMS Task Force, and to all of the faculty, GTF, staff, and students whose work and feedback made the decision possible. Lastly, he thanked Helen Chu, Director of Academic Technology. He stated that she had done a marvelous job as Project Manager for the transition, and in leading the LMS team.
Senate President Kyr thanked Andrew Bonamici for the announcement.
Senate President Kyr stated that the next item on the agenda was a motion: Opposition to Efforts by Academic Affairs to Dilute and Degrade Academic Standards in the Event of a Graduate Teaching Fellows Strike. He stated that the sponsors of this motion were Monique Balbuena, Senator (Clark Honors College); Jane Cramer, Senator (Political Science); John Davidson, Senator (Political Science); Dianne Dugaw, Senator (English); Deborah Olson, Senator (Special Education); Regina Psaki, Senator (Romance Languages); and Gordon Sayre, Senator (English). He then called on Senator Sayre to move the motion. He did so, and Senator Merskin offered a second. After reading the motion, Senate President Kyr invited Senator Sayre to provide some background.
Senator Gordon Sayre (English) stated that several sponsors would be addressing different aspects of this motion separately and ceded the floor to Senator Regina Psaki.
Senator Regina Psaki (Romance Languages) began by stating that this motion had not been brought forward to pick a fight. She conceded that the language of the motion suggested otherwise, but assured those present that all of the sponsors were very concerned about the academic integrity of their courses, their teaching, and how this interfaced with the Graduate Teaching Fellows. She stated that some pedagogically inadequate solutions had been suggested for palliating the effects of a GTFF strike: canceling class hours in dead week; modifying exams for some, or all, courses; shifting oral exams from one-on-one to small groups; shifting essay exams to short answer exams; changing the page length for final essays; giving multiple choice exams for ease of grading; letting students choose to be graded based on work done so far in the class (with a note that this strategy could be applied department-wide, or on a course-by-course basis); hiring upper-level undergraduates, OAs, or non-GTF graduate students; and adding department heads, or alternative faculty, as instructors of record on grading. She stated that she had nothing against multiple choice or short answer exams where they were chosen on pedagogical grounds as the best way to evaluate student mastery of the material. However, she asserted that where they were deliberately not chosen, they represented a dilution of academic quality, and a lowering of academic standards imposed. She added that in her own courses, it would be educational malpractice to use this kind of shortcut to evaluate what she taught. She explained that it was impossible to evaluate how well students had learned to write an essay by having them write short answers, or how well they had learned to articulate complex ideas by giving a multiple choice exam. She stated that if she were to choose to run her courses this way under normal circumstances, she would not get away with it. She also added that many assignments are carefully constructed not only to measure mastery, but to strengthen it, and stated that many instructors deliberately give assignments that students can learn from while doing them. She stated that it was the faculty's prerogative to choose how to assess and teach, and urged the Senate to vote in favor of the motion.
Senator Jane Cramer (Political Science) added that the proposed methods of dealing with the GTF strike had been leaked from a confidential memo. She stated that she had since learned that the confidential memo had possibly been requested. She questioned why the memo would be confidential when it was meant to be a suggested to the faculty. She added that many of the items that had been suggested were things that faculty had to fight against constantly within their departments.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for discussion and debate. He recognized Doug Blandy.
Senior Vice Provost Doug Blandy (Academic Affairs) stated that he did not dispute anything that had been said, but added that he thought it was important to provide some context. He stated that the confidentiality associated with the memo was due to it being a preliminary work that had led to a second directive that had been released. He stated that it was also important to acknowledge that many significant hours were spent, by an academic continuity team, talking with Deans, Associate Deans, and Unit Heads to do an inventory of possibilities that could be adopted by the departments. He stated that nothing in the memo was prescriptive, explaining that it was up to individual units, their Heads, and their faculty, to decide how to move forward in the event of a strike by the graduate teaching assistants. He added that Academic Affairs believed it was vitally important that the University not betray the students in the event of a graduate teaching assistant strike, and that the University provide as seamless an experience as possible in the best academic way possible.
Senate President Kyr recognized Barbara Altmann.
Barbara Altmann (Academic Affairs) stated that Academic Affairs knew that anything it sent out by email was going to be widely available, and that the "confidential" marking was a vestige of an older document that should have been removed. She stated that the memo was intended to engender more ideas and more consultation, and that Academic Affairs wanted to have the collaboration and help of the faculty in determining how to best handle the appropriate evaluation of work—in every kind of class, in every area—across the campus. She stated that the major concern was simply to ensure a "seamless transition" through to the end of term. She added that Academic Affairs was very concerned about undergraduate students losing financial aid, or being unable to register for sequential courses if they did not have final grades in some of their Fall Term work. She added that Academic Affairs would very much like to tap into the pedagogical expertise of the faculty in order to figure out what unusual measures could best be used in these unusual circumstances.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Michael Price.
Senator Michael Price (Mathematics) stated, anecdotally, that a number of departments and faculty members were resistant to the notion of doing additional work and taking overtime in response to a GTF strike. He asked if the sponsors of the bill could speak to maintaining continuity if the other members of the unclassified staff were not going to step up to take on additional responsibilities.
Senator Sayre stated that there were different situations that could be dealt with in different ways. He explained that in situations where faculty members were teaching large classes—for which GTFs were graders or section leaders—if GTFs were not available to grade final exams, many faculty might elect to put aside their qualms about crossing picket lines and take on many hours of work to grade those exams themselves. He stated that some would, and some would not. He noted that he was very concerned, however, about the hundreds of classes that are taught independently by GTFs, who are teaching material that faculty members are not familiar with, and who are writing exams that faculty members are not able to grade. He stated that he did not think it was responsible, or appropriate, to ask people who have no familiarity with the course material to suddenly jump in and write and grade exams, tests, and papers.
Senate President Kyr recognized another sponsor, Senator Psaki.
Senator Psaki agreed with Senator Sayre, with the caveat that in many cases, undergraduates are being taught by graduate students who know them, have followed them, have been tracking their work, and have been working with them one-on-one to improve it. She stated that there was no way for a seamless educational delivery in the absence of the GTFs. She added that, as much as she would like to palliate impact on the undergraduate students, GTFs are students, too. This, she explained, revealed the "not betraying our students" argument as a simplistic phrase being applied in a situation which was, in truth, not simple.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Michael Dreiling.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) stated that he believed everybody—even good people—made regrettable decisions, and that sometimes those decisions resulted in consequences that affect institutional or human values in a way that need to be acknowledged. He added that he thought this was a moment where this was the case. He explained that a decision was made to develop procedures—affecting undergraduate curriculum in hundreds of courses—that bypassed the Constitutionally-mandated role of the Senate, and the Undergraduate Council. He stated that this did not mean that the people who made the decision were bad people, but instead that the decision crossed a line. He asserted that this was what the motion was about. He added that it had to be acknowledged that there was a role for the Undergraduate Council and for the Senate. He stated that concerned faculty were asking questions like: "Well, who's going to grade these student papers? You mean I'm going to have to pass these on to somebody who's unqualified—who's never been in my course—to grade these? I can't just submit an ‘X’ and wait until the University and the GTFF resolve this issue, and then a grade be submitted once that is resolved?" He stated that the answer the faculty was getting was "no," and that the faculty were concerned about the compromise of the integrity of academic standards, course standards, and the standards of the profession, by procedures that called on unqualified graders to grade course material that they had no contact with. He reiterated that he believed a line was clearly crossed, and that the Senate and the Undergraduate Council were to be consulted when dramatic changes to course processes occur.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Nathan Tublitz.
Professor Nathan Tublitz (Biology) stated that so far, there had been talk about process, procedures, and lines that had been crossed. He shared his belief that there were also moral and ethical issues underlying the issue. He explained that the GTFs are colleagues, and that without them, the University could not run. He stated that the GTFs were not asking for “the moon, and the sun, and the stars,” but simply for a livable wage and a small assistance in the event that they became ill. He asserted that the University is a moral and ethical institution—not a corporate entity—and that it has a responsibility to treat everyone fairly and with respect. He then asked Interim President Coltrane what he was going to do to end the strike threat by the end of the meeting. He reiterated that the University could not run without the GTFs, and stated that the University needed to stop dealing with all of the silly bureaucracy and solve the problem.
Senate President Kyr recognized Interim President Coltrane.
Interim President Scott Coltrane stated that he realized that Professor Tublitz thought this was an easy problem to fix. He continued that the Administration had been in bargaining for almost a year, and that the offer on the table was more generous than the University's competitors. He stated that the Administration had moved in negotiations, and encouraged those present to engage in getting to the truth regarding what was on the table. He reiterated that the University had made a very generous offer, and that that they had moved significantly. He added that there had been no movement on the GTFF side, and that this was responsible for bringing negotiations to a halt.
Senate President Kyr asked where everybody could go to get more information.
Interim President Coltrane directed people to the Provost's website.
Senate President Kyr recognized Carla McNelly.
Carla McNelly introduced herself as the President of the SEIU Local 085, and stated that she would like to say more about getting to the truth. She stated that some of the information in the memo was inaccurate. She explained that classified staff who work part-time accrue paid leave, and added that the Administration was falsely claiming that this did not happen for other constituents on the campus, and that it would therefore cause ill-will. She added that the classified staff would like to join the grad students in receiving paid leave.
Senate President Kyr recognized Lisa Freinkel.
Associate Professor Lisa Freinkel (Comparative Literature and English) stated that she wanted to acknowledge how heartbreaking this situation was. She stated that she was the Graduate Director in Comparative Literature for nine years, and that she was now the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Studies. She urged those present to think clearly about how to meet the needs of the undergraduates and provide support for the graduate students. She stated that this would have to occur in conversations that happen among colleagues, recognizing the full implications. She added that the implications for undergraduates were very heavy, particularly for the most vulnerable students—who were facing issues with financial aid—and the students in gated majors, who would not know until after they received final grades whether they could be in that major or not. She stated that there were huge implications for all of the students, and for the community. She stated that working together was not simply about collective bargaining, but rather about “heart opened, face-to-face, context by context, moment by moment, making very difficult choices, and weighing all of the implications.” She urged those present to find a way to tone down the rhetoric, and to find a way to reach out to each other while thinking about how decisions would affect all of the 24,500 students on campus, and all the staff and faculty. She stated that the University was stumbling, and implored people to try to stumble together.
Professor Karen Creighton (P.E. and Recreation) introduced herself as a member of the P.E. and Recreation department. She noted that she had been an adjunct, and that they had been receiving the equivalent of paid leave for years. She stated that the new union contract guaranteed that adjuncts and non-tenure track faculty would have the equivalent of paid leave. She added that, as a P.E. teacher, she had the opportunity to get to know students and to talk with them. She explained that students had started asking her about the possible GTF strike, and noted that they were very upset about it. She stated that several of her students offered to pay the GTFs directly, rather than pay the University. She went on to state that she had gone to most of the bargaining sessions for United Academics (which, she explained, had its moments that were tense) and also to the GTF bargaining that happened over the summer. She stated that she, along with a colleague who attended the meeting with her, were appalled at how the University lawyer spoke to the GTF bargaining team. She stated that it was insulting, and unbelievable. As a result, she stated that she had a very hard time accepting what she heard coming from Administrative memos regarding the GTF bargaining.
Kurt Willcox (College of Education) introduced himself as a researcher at the College of Education, and the non-faculty staff member on the Board of Trustees. He prefaced his statement by noting that he was only speaking for himself, and that he was not speaking for the Board. He stated that he wished more Board members would come to Senate meetings, because there was a misperception on the part of many Board members about the University Senate, how it operates, and its level of function or dysfunction. He stated that he wanted to second what Carla McNelly had said about the material that the University had sent out about the GTFF negotiations. He stated that the basic thrust of it was: "We're being very generous here, and really you should just take it and not complain." He stated that he thought it was important to acknowledge that the University had made some movement in negotiations, but asserted that it was also important that the Administration be truthful when describing what it had done. He stated that on the surface, there was some truth to what the Administration claimed, but that the two key points regarding why the proposal should be accepted were not quite ingenuous. He stated that the claim that the majority of employees at the University do not earn paid benefits under half time was true, but pointed out that there were 1,500 to 1,600 classified employees who do qualify to earn part-time benefits under half time—the point being that what the GTFs were asking for was not new ground, and was not inequity for all other employees on campus. He stated that the Administration also claimed that the GTFs were asking for something that nobody else has on campus—paid leave in an illness, accident, or parental leave circumstance. He acknowledged that, on the surface, this was true; but, he asserted, other groups on campus—classified faculty—earn sick leave, vacation leave, and have the ability to apply some of the paid leave they earn in these situations. He explained that Graduate Teaching Fellows do not earn sick leave, or vacation leave. He stated that the GTFs had asked for a minimal proposal—to have some sort of paid leave in these extraordinary circumstances of a major illness, accident, or parental leave. He reiterated that it was very important to be direct and completely truthful about these proposals. He added that he thought it would be a disaster if there was a GTF strike. He stated that there was no up-side. He added that a GTFF strike over this issue of medical hardship leave was going to send the wrong message to all of the people the University wanted to recruit, or get money from. He stated that he thought a GTF strike would clearly damage the Administration, and leave wounds that would exist for a long time. He urged the Senate to pass the motion, and also urged the Administration to find a way to come back to the bargaining table—not just talk about its generosity, but to find a way to settle this issue.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Matthew Dennis.
Professor Matthew Dennis (History and Environmental Studies) stated that he wanted to focus more on the motion at hand and how to make a transition, assuming that the strike went forward. He stated that most of the problems that had been identified were administrative rather than pedagogical. He explained that whether financial aid could or could not be granted, whether people could or could not declare majors, or whether they could enroll in classes that were sequential, were administrative problems. He stated that the logical thing to do was to have the administrative part of the University be as creative as possible to try to make this transition work, without changing how classes are taught or students are evaluated.
Senate President Kyr recognized Beatriz Gutierrez, ASUO President.
Beatriz Gutierrez(ASUO President) stated that this motion was very important to assure that students receive a quality education, adding that the contingency plan outlined in the memo was not enough to guarantee the quality of the education that students were paying for. She stated that, as representative of the students, the graduate students were peers, and that it was very important to support the graduate students in getting the kind of quality pay they deserve.
Senate President Kyr recognized Kenneth Doxsee.
Kenneth Doxsee (Academic Affairs) stated that he was Professor of Chemistry, and that he wanted to express a little confusion about the discussion. He stated that he appreciated the comments that had been made, but added that he had observed a disconnect between the "whereas" clauses of the motion and the proposals outlined in the memo. He elaborated that the memo had not demanded or prescribed any changes—it had merely suggested that faculty members consider approaches for their own final examinations. He stated that he did not see this as an objectionable suggestion given the state of affairs.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor John Bonine.
Professor John Bonine (Law) stated that the Senate was not voting on the "whereas" clauses, but only the resolved clauses.
Senate President Kyr agreed that Section 2, the "be it therefore moved" clauses, were the only ones being voted on. He called for a vote to close debate, which carried, and Senate President Kyr called for a vote on the motion itself. The motion carried, and Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would return to its agenda on December 3rd.
Senate President Kyrcalled the November 19, 2014 meeting of the University Senate to a close at 5:00 p.m.
Present: Paul Dassonville, Miriam Deutsch, Reza Rejaie, Randy Sullivan, Jane Cramer, John Davidson, William Harbaugh, Diane Dugaw, Deborah Healey, Colin Koopman, Regina Psaki, Ron Lovinger, Laura Leete, Richard Margerum, Charles Lachman, Marylin Nippold, Debra Merskin, Mary Ann Hyatt, Victoria Mitchell, Robin Clement, Jennifer Ellis, Robert Kyr, Monique Balbuena, David Espinoza, Lisa Raleigh, Debra Thurman, Samantha Cohen, Quin Haaga, Andrew Lubash, John Ahlen, Theodora Ko Thompson, Mike Strain
Absent: Jennifer Freyd, Weiyong He, Michael Price, Michael Dreiling, Gordon Sayre, Jerry Rosiek, Edward Teague, Alexandre Dossin, Abel Cerros, Kate Closno, Jimmy Murray
Excused: Jun Li, Ken Prehoda, Bruce McGough, Jason Brown, Geraldine Poizat-Newcomb, Donna Shaw, Deborah Olson
1. CALL TO ORDER
Senate President Robert Kyr (Music) called the November 5, 2014 meeting of the University of Oregon Senate to order at 3:00 p.m. in room 115 Lawrence Hall. He welcomed those in attendance and stated that the agenda would be full of extremely important items—including the continuation of the report by the Senate Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support. He noted that the Senate would also be returning to six motions related to revisions of the Student Conduct Code.
2. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES
Senate President Kyr stated that the first item on the agenda would be the approval of minutes. He requested comments and questions regarding the minutes for the October 8th meeting. None were put forward, and the minutes were approved.
3. STATE OF THE UNIVERSITY
3.1 Remarks by Interim President Scott Coltrane with questions
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would hear the State of the University Address delivered by Interim President Scott Coltrane. He noted that Interim President Coltrane would also be speaking about strategic planning on behalf of Acting Provost Frances Bronet, who was not able to attend the meeting. With that, he invited Interim President Coltrane to deliver his remarks.
Interim President Scott Coltrane thanked Senate President Kyr and explained that Acting Provost Frances Bronet was attending a national meeting on campus climate at the University of Michigan with Vice Presidents Yvette Alex-Assensoh and Robin Holmes. He stated that he would be providing an update on the strategic planning process in her absence. He relayed that the planning was in the process of being launched, and noted that it would support the University's mission and competitive excellence goals. He continued that Acting Provost Bronet had suggested creating four task groups to focus on how to support the specific goals of the University. He elaborated that these goals were: to improve student access and support; to support research, discovery, and graduate education excellence; to attract and retain outstanding, diverse faculty and staff; and to enhance the campus infrastructure and technology. He relayed that Acting Provost Bronet had put out a call for nominations, and noted that she appreciated receiving the names of people who might serve on those task force groups. He explained that Acting Provost Bronet would announce the groups as soon as all of the membership lists were finalized. He added that this would be happening in the next couple of weeks, and that the task forces would play an integral role in rewriting the strategic plan for implementing and achieving the goals of competitive excellence.
Interim President Coltrane informed the Senate that the remainder of his address would be largely devoted to issues relating to the Senate Task Force Report. He noted that the major topic of the Task Force’s report was enhancing campus safety by improving the way that the University addressed all forms of sexual misconduct and violence. He stated that he was deeply concerned about the cultural trends that he observed among young people—and society at large—which promoted the sexual objectification of young women, and condoned sexual exploitation by men. He stated that as a sociologist who specialized in family and gender, he had studied patterns of gender asymmetry, sexual privilege, and gender-based power differentials, and indicated that he clearly understood that there was a widespread, cultural problem that manifested itself on college campuses. He indicated that the University had to find new ways of addressing this issue. He emphasized that the University needed to seize the opportunity to deal with these issues directly, and show others how to confront it head on.
He stated that the University of Oregon was committed to creating a safe and respectful campus free from all forms of sexual misconduct and sexual violence. He asserted that in order to meet this commitment, all members of the campus community would need to work together to improve the campus climate, to prevent sexual misconduct and violence, to encourage reporting, to support survivors, and to address the many complicated issues that exacerbate the problem—including alcohol and drug abuse, and gender and bias issues. He stated that several years ago, the University of Oregon had begun working to address sexual violence on campus in a renewed way with the creation of new prevention efforts, reporting policies, and strategic investments, along with the Groves Report, which was commissioned to review Student Life's prevention messaging. He stated that the issue had received renewed attention last spring, when the White House Task Force issued the Not Alone Report and the Department of Education began investigating colleges across the country for their handling of sexual assault issues. He noted that around the same time, the University of Oregon was dealing its own high-profile cases, and that the spotlight had divided the campus. He added that it left many members of the community feeling unsafe, unfairly targeted, confused about the law and the University’s responsibility under that law, and deeply saddened at both the national and local problems that had devastated so many young people. He stated that this had generated a call to action for the University to do better, and to make a real improvement in the safety and culture of the campus.
Interim President Coltrane stressed that the plan going forward would need to be comprehensive, sustained, and long-term. He added that it must dedicate focused attention, research, and resources to addressing sexual misconduct and violence, and that it would need to be informed by the work and perspectives of a broad group of campus and community constituents, as well as national best and promising practices. He explained that the University of Oregon would benefit from several complimentary and parallel efforts currently underway, and that it would need to consider all of the information and recommendations from these efforts in order to create a truly comprehensive plan. He stated that these efforts included: the University Senate's Task Force recommendations; the President's Review Panel and recommendations (which, he noted, were slated to be received in early December); the University-wide gap analysis of prevention efforts coordinated by Student Life; the White House Task Force Report and other national efforts; the U.S. Department of Education's guidance on Title IX and final rule changes to the Clery Act; and the Groves Report commissioned by Student Life in 2013.
He noted that the Task Force recommendations would inform this comprehensive plan and the community-wide effort to improve campus safety. He took a moment to thank the Task Force for all of the hard work they had devoted to developing the report, and stated that he was very pleased to see that many of the recommendations were already underway on campus. He stated that it was very clear that coordination and prevention efforts needed to establish confidential reporting, and added that the University was already exploring options for how to implement this. He noted that some of the suggestions called for a different organizational structure that he had not envisioned. He expressed his appreciation for the recommendations, as well as the Senate's sense of urgency; he added that he felt this urgency also, but that he thought the University needed to let the various reports come forward, and that this would happen all at the end of the current term.
He pointed out that some of the timelines that were included in the Task Force's report deadlines did not fit with the planning efforts that were underway. He reasoned that some of them would have to be adjusted in order to ensure that the University could have a coordinated, community-wide, and comprehensive effort. He stated that his plan was to share the recommendations of the Report (assuming the Senate adopted them) with the President's Review Panel, Student Life Division, and all of the units working collectively on these issues. He stated that by early December, when he would receive the President's Review Panel recommendations, he also expected to receive the gap study from Student Life, as well as additional local and national research data that was being compiled. He stated that the University would take all of these reports and recommendations and make them available to the entire campus community. He speculated that these materials would be on the President's Website, and encouraged those present to anticipate further information in the future (probably during finals week).
Interim President Coltrane continued by noting that he was concerned about the need to engage more students, faculty, and staff in the discussion of specific proposals. He shared his belief that in order for the University to create a truly comprehensive plan to address sexual misconduct and violence, a set of larger fora would need to be held during January and February to provide opportunities for continued discussions.
He stated that it was clear from the large amount of strong opinions shared at the Task Force public forum that the University needed to engage the entire campus community before it moved ahead. He added that the University would hold meetings and discussions so that it could explore how the various proposals fit together, with the aim of identifying areas of overlap and possible consensus initiatives. He stated that his leadership team would advise him in order to determine how the University could best focus its energy and resources to make the greatest impact on the campus climate, and to fundamentally improve student safety. He stated that this would depend on building productive coalitions, and not on pitting different parts of the campus against one another. He added that the University needed to work together as a campus community to integrate these efforts and build relationships, and that this would only be possible if people did not play into stereotypes, marginalize particular groups of students or specific departments, or create barriers to prevention efforts and community-building. He emphasized that this was the University community's collective challenge and joint responsibility, and that everyone needed to work together to face this challenge and end sexual misconduct and violence. He stated that the University leadership had a deep gratitude for everyone who had invested time and energy into the shared goal of making the University of Oregon a safe and respectful place to learn. He added that he was grateful to the Senate Task Force for its work, and that he valued the perspective and expertise that it brought to the process. He stated that the University leadership was ready to review the recommendations approved by the Senate as it worked on a comprehensive plan to address sexual misconduct and violence on campus. Closing his remarks, Interim President Coltrane thanked those present and invited questions.
Senator David Espinoza (Counseling & Testing Center) noted that Interim President Coltrane had spoken of a comprehensive and coordinated approach to the sexual violence issue. He asked if Coltrane had given any thought to who should be leading this.
Interim President Coltrane asked Senator Espinoza what “leading” meant in this context.
Senator Espinoza stated that he meant leading in the sense that the leader would be responsible for making sure things happened.
Interim President Coltrane indicated that the Division of Student life was the unit with primary responsibility for the Student Conduct Code and its enforcement, Student Life, and FSL. He stated that the Task Force report showed (and that the Presidential Panel would show) that the problem of sexual violence touches all parts of campus. He added that he believed the University community could not go forward without having everyone involved. He stated that there was no single solution, but asserted that the Division of Student Life had to be central. He requested further questions.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) stated that he had a question about the new College and Careers building. He noted that he had been with the University for 20 years, and joked that he expected to die in PLC during the next earthquake. He stated that he was a little disturbed to see that the new College and Careers building—rather than being earmarked for classrooms and faculty offices—seemed to have a substantial part of it dedicated to new administrative offices for CAS. He stated that he was wondering how it was that new administrative offices had become a priority.
Interim President Coltrane stated that Senator Harbaugh's question was a good one. He shared that as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, he had been lobbying for buildings for the College of Arts and Sciences for quite some time. He noted that this building project was different from previous ones in that it actually had funding; he elaborated that the University had received a ten million dollar gift, and that other gifts were coming in. He added that the University still needed to raise an additional seven million dollars, which would require the state to approve bonding authority. He stated that it would be the new home for the offices of the College of Arts and Sciences, which are currently located in Friendly Hall. He stated that these offices were badly needed for the literature and language programs housed by Friendly Hall. He added that he was sorry to say that the Economics Department was not going to go into the building, but shared that there were plans for an additional building that would (potentially) be located across the street. He noted that, in addition to having a full floor of classrooms, the new CAS building would also house the Career Center and other academic unit coordinating efforts.
An unidentified speakercommented that the new CAS building would provide 30% of the classroom space needed on campus.
Interim President Coltrane agreed that it would add more classrooms, and stated that he did not think the University could build new buildings without putting classrooms in them. He added that the University needed more high-tech classrooms, in particular.
Senator Regina Psaki (Romance Languages)expressed her eagerness to talk about the Task Force recommendations, but added that she also wanted to lobby for making some of the offices back into classrooms in Friendly Hall.
Professor John Bonine (Law) asked President Coltrane if he could clarify what aforementioned national and local research he expected to be available by early December.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he expected to receive the President's Review Panel and the gap analysis from the Division of Student Life. He stated that the national reports were ongoing, and that there was an AAU effort with consultants and experts compiling campus climate data.
Professor Bonine asked Interim President Coltrane if he was able to submit a request with the AAU to make their planned surveys public so that they would be available to campus researchers to analyze. He stated that his comments were contingent on the validity of his assumption that the survey would be proprietary.
Interim President Coltranestated that he did not think it was proprietary, and that he believed the intent was to develop an instrument that would be validly and reliably used by various AAU schools, and subsequently distributed—and widely adopted—among all schools.
Professor Bonine stated that when he used the term "proprietary," he was trying to use a polite word for "secret." He stated that his understanding was that the instrument would not be widely available. He asked Interim President Coltrane if he would be willing to request that it not be secret, adding that good research requires open analysis.
Interim President Coltrane stated that according to the President of the AAU, Hunter Rawlings, the intent was to have the instrument be widely available, and for everyone to use it.
Professor Bonineclarified that he meant to ask if the instrument would be available during its development—not simply after it had been selected.
Interim President Coltrane stated that it was his understanding that the development was already underway. He encouraged Professor Bonine to visit the Rutgers or the AAU websites to access it, and stated that he thought that they wanted as much input as possible.
Professor Bonine stated that he was under the impression that there was additional national and local research—other than the gap analysis, the Task Force, and the President’s Review Panel—that would be available by December. He stated that he now gathered that this was not what Interim President Coltrane intended to say.
Interim President Coltrane agreed that this was not what he meant.
Professor Bonine moved on to note that there were members of the Interim President's Administration who had criticized certain researchers on campus for having personal bias. He stated that he would like to know whether the Interim President would offer his opinion on whether it was appropriate to criticize faculty members for having bias in their research without some substantive basis for doing so.
Interim President Coltrane noted, as a sociologist who had worked on survey data, that the question of bias was ever-present. He stated that discussions that were aimed toward making a better survey looked to eliminate bias, but pointed out that it was never possible to totally eliminate bias—be it through sampling, through question wording, or through ordering. He stated that he did not think that members of the University should criticize each other, but added that discussions about bias were needed in order to do good survey work.
Professor Bonine agreed, but stated that his point was that the specific phrasing used by the Administration indicated that certain research would not be supported because the researcher had personal bias. He stated that this was his understanding of what was said.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he thought that Professor Bonine was incorrect in his understanding, but that he took his comment.
Professor Bonine asked Interim President Coltrane to comment on the propriety of the Administration’s actions, provided that his understanding of what transpired was correct.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he did not think that the University should engage in any personal invective, or degradation people's research and motives.
Professor Bonine thanked Interim President Coltrane for his response.
Professor Carol Stabile (Journalism & Communication, Women’s & Gender Studies) stated that she wanted to follow up on Senator Espinoza's question about leadership. She noted that one of the things the Task Force was mindful of was that its charge did not involve just sexual assault—but sexual violence at large. She added that Student Life certainly played an important role, but that the University also had faculty and staff who were survivors. In light of this, she asked if there was some kind of supra-agency that might be able to coordinate the various aspects of a portfolio regarding sexual violence at large.
Interim President Coltrane stated that this was one of the things that the University would take under advisement. He added that he thought that having people charged to look at sexual violence at large was a good piece of advice, but that he was not sure exactly how it would be done yet.
Professor Stabile thanked Interim President Coltrane for his response.
Interim President Coltrane, seeing no further questions, thanked those present and stated that he looked forward to the discussion.
Senate President Kyr thanked Interim President Coltrane for his remarks and stated that the next item on the agenda would be the presentation of the report of the Senate Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support. He added that in the two weeks leading up to the meeting, there had been a robust series of opportunities for conversation and feedback. He stated that the Senate would thus hear the recommendations—which been slightly revised—from Task Force Co-Chair, Carol Stabile. He took a moment to invite the members of the Task Force to stand and receive the gratitude of the Senate for their hard work on the report.
Senate President Kyr stated that because the Senate was receiving the report and literally presenting it to the President at the current meeting for action, that it did not need to actually vote on it. He stated that the Senate's first action point would therefore be on November 19th, when it would consider legislation for the creation of a standing committee. He added that the reason the Senate was not doing this at the current meeting was because the Senate needed to hear the upcoming presentation before legislation could be formulated. With that, he welcomed Professor Carol Stabile to present the Task Force’s revised recommendations.
Professor Carol Stabile (Journalism & Communication, Women’s & Gender Studies) stated that she would cover each of the revisions so that the Senate could see what had been changed, adding that afterwards, there would be a period of discussion. She asked that comments be limited to two minutes in order to provide as many opportunities for contribution as possible.
She prefaced her presentation by sharing her belief that the work that had been started in the Task Force and the Senate would continue to unfold over the coming years. She shared that, upon beginning her work with the Task Force, she realized that the process of creating the recommendations was transformative. She stated that it was common for people to forget that the process itself of talking through these issues and building connections with people was able to change the culture on campus. She asserted that no one knows how to change a culture in an easy, straightforward way, but that she was excited that the University had taken the first step toward doing so. She stated that she believed the University could figure out the path forward because it had so many people who were committed to the cause.
Professor Stabile noted that the Task Force had received a lot of excellent feedback—both online, and in person. She added that some of the feedback had been questions and comments about language, and that the Task Force had tried to incorporate most of these into the revisions in order to clear up some of the confusion. She noted that Interim President Coltrane was correct in stating that some of the timelines were off, and that they would require adjustments.
She stated that the first revision was to change the name of the standing committee (proposed in Recommendation 1.2) to "The Standing Committee on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence” throughout the report.
With regard to the centralized office proposed in Recommendation 1.1, Professor Stabile stated that the Task Force had adopted a language of consolidation: “A centralized office could consolidate as needed existing resources, including, but not limited to…”. She added that the Task Force wanted to stress the processual elements of this recommendation by adding additional resources that exist at the University. She noted, however, that the Task Force also wanted to make it known that the recommendation would be the subject of further discussion, research, and thought over the next three months, and that it wanted this process to be as inclusive as possible.
Referring to the deadline at the end of Recommendation 1.1, she stated that the initial recommendation—to have an Interim VP appointed February 15th, 2015—had been replaced with the following: ”the Standing Committee will establish a working group to conduct research and create a proposal for the establishment of this office (report due March 1, 2015).” She stated that the Task Force wanted to have an opportunity to look at other organizational structures, and to examine what peer and stretch institutions were doing. She added that the Task Force wanted to have time to consider what kind of framework would optimize the organization of existing resources given the makeup, size, and culture of the campus.
She stated that Recommendation 1.3 (“Engage with and Fund the UO Campus Climate Survey”) had been revised to include new language: "The Task Force encourages more research rather than less." She explained that the Task Force did not want people to think that they were not endorsing as much research as possible. Continuing with the revision, she read: "UO should consider using the climate survey currently being developed by the White House, but we must not use that as an excuse to delay our own campus climate surveys. We have significant resources on this campus." She explained that the Task Force wanted to make sure that people knew that it was not saying that there should be only one climate survey. She further read: "The initial findings of the 'UO Sexual Violence and Institutional Behavior Campaign Survey,' moreover, are consistent with twenty years of research on campus sexual violence, as well as MIT's recent well-publicized campus climate survey. Indeed, MIT President praised the survey: 'I am confident that, with this shared understanding and armed with this new data, the MIT community will find a path to significant positive change.' The Task Force urges UO leaders to similarly support the campus climate survey...”. Professor Stabile pointed out that a footnote had also been changed regarding the AAU survey. She elaborated that this change stated that if the data and the instrument of a survey were proprietary, then the Task Force would urge the University not to sign on to it.
Professor Stabile stated that the final addition to Recommendation 1.3 read: "The Task Force would like to clarify that Dr. Freyd has volunteered her time and labor for work on the 'UO Sexual Violence and Institutionalized Behavior Campaign Survey.' She has not asked for compensation from the university for the time she has spent on that survey or will devote to coming surveys." She explained that the Task Force had noticed in the feedback that there was a lot of confusion on this issue, and that people thought that a member of the Task Force was benefitting from the recommendations. She stated that Dr. Freyd had not been compensated for the labor that she had devoted to the project, and that she would not be compensated for her labor in the future.
Professor Stabile stated that Recommendation 1.4 had been reworded, because people were unsure of what the word "empower" meant in this context. She explained that the language was modified to read: "1.4: Ask the President and the Board to instruct the Athletics Department's senior leadership to cooperate with, and fully participate in, the Senate Intercollegiate Athletics Committee’s efforts to address sexual violence issues as they pertain to athletics."
She stated that Recommendation 1.5, regarding Fraternity and Sorority Life, had been modified to read: "The Task Force was impressed with feedback provided by members of the FSL community at our public meeting. As one member put it, 'We are aggressively committed to fighting sexual assault.' There is well-documented potential for FSL and its members to become leaders in the effort to combat sexual violence. We make the following recommendations in the interest of forging partnerships with FSL in order to create protective spaces and to help design and implement FSL-specific prevention efforts. However, research shows that FSL—both locally and nationally—has serious problems with sexual violence."
She added that Recommendation 1.5 had been further revised to read: "The Task Force heard from fraternity/sorority members at the Open Forum on November 3 that they are 'aggressively committed to changing the culture at UO.' They vowed to bring in programs, have approved a FSL Sexual Assault Task Force with at least one member from each fraternity and sorority chapter, and plan to have workshops in each chapter each term taught by experts, among other plans. One speaker stressed that members of fraternities and sororities 'understand the gravity of the situation' and another summarized that 'The FSL community is passionate about changing the UO culture.' In the end, the Task Force was impressed when one spokesperson concluded, 'We hope that by unifying with the University Senate and the Administration we can drive the change to become a leader.' That is also the desire of the Task Force as it makes the following recommendations concerning FSL."
Professor Stabile stated that the next revision occurred in Recommendation 1.5.2 ("Assign Research and Analysis of FSL to the Senate Standing Committee's FSL Working Group"). She explained that the Task Force had encountered a great deal of difficulty finding data about FSL, and that this recommendation had come out of that concern. She stated that now, “the Task Force also recommends the use of qualitative approaches to studying FSL culture on our campus. If we are to effectively create interventions, educational programs, and ultimately change the cultures that facilitate sexual violence, we need to develop research-based understandings of what FSL is, what it does (both positively and negatively), and what it might yet become on our campus."
Continuing, Professor Stabile noted that Recommendation 1.5.3 had been changed such that there would be two FSL representatives to the Senate Standing Committee's FSL Working Group.
She stated that the Task Force had changed the "mandatory course" language in Recommendation 2.1 to read: "the Task Force will be working on proposals for courses and not necessarily a single mandatory course, although that option will be explored and discussed." She noted that the Task Force had also added: "Recognizing that the process of discussing these courses with stakeholders will be critical to the content and structure of the courses themselves, the working group on mandatory courses will begin holding open meetings to discuss these issues in January 2015." She stated that she thought the mandatory course was something that people were the most passionate about from the beginning, but that it was also one of the issues that was going to be the most controversial. She stated that the Task Force thought that generating more conversation about what the course might look like would be beneficial.
Professor Stabile noted that in Recommendation 2.2.1—which calls for additional staff for the Sexual Wellness Advocacy Team (SWAT)—the following language was added: “To be effective, the SWAT program must be expanded to include multiple sessions targeted to specific audiences including, but not limited to: American English Institute students, ASUO student programs, band, club sports, forensics, fraternity and sorority members, international students, student athletes, et al."
She stated that Recommendation 2.2.2, "Expand Empowerment-Based Women's Self-Defense Training," had also been revised to include additional language: "The Task Force emphasizes that empowerment-based self-defense classes explicitly attribute assault to perpetrators and not to victims. In contrast with other forms of risk reduction advice (e.g. avoiding public spaces, avoiding alcohol, traveling with a buddy, etc.) which constrain women's actions, women's self-defense training can empower women's range of actions." She added that Professor Jocelyn Hollander had copies of an excellent FAQ on women's self-defense, which was available to anyone who might be interested.
Still referring to Recommendation 2.2.2, Professor Stabile stated that the Task Force was also reminded to add LGBTQ students to workshops that would be targeted to specific groups. The recommendation had been changed to read: "Specifically, we recommend that funds be devoted to make the existing women's self-defense class in Physical Education available to more students and to offer regular, brief workshops to specific student groups (e.g., LGBTQ students, new students, students studying abroad, or international students)."
She stated that under Recommendation 2.3, “Title IX Education and Training,” the need for mandatory trainings would far exceed the University's current capacity. She stated that the Task Force wanted to emphasize that one of the reasons it was calling for staff increases was that the type of training programs it recommended would be massive undertakings. She added that they would require a lot of time spent training people and preparing materials, and the Task Force wanted to add language to make it clear why it was requesting additional staff positions.
Professor Stabile noted that Recommendation 2.3.2 had been changed such that the effective Title IX training required for UO employees would include training specifically designed for graduate teaching fellows.
She stated that Recommendation 2.4 had undergone a language addition, because people were upset that it called for "a pamphlet." She stated that the section had been changed to clarify that the materials would be available on the website, and that people could print them as a downloadable PDF. She added that further language was inserted to propose a menu item on sexual violence on the "About UO" main menu, and to suggest that it include the PDF and other resources.
Professor Stabile continued that Recommendation 2.5—which calls on the University to coordinate programming and publicity aimed at sexual violence prevention—had been modified, as well. She stated that the Task Force wanted to emphasize that it felt like this would be a temporary measure until there was a centralized office, so it added language to that effect. She added that the Task Force also clarified that the responsibility for programming and publicity would be given to the Director of Sexual Violence Prevention and Education.
She stated that Recommendation 3.4, “Provide the Ombuds Office with Confidentiality,” had been changed to provide a definition of an Ombudsperson, because many students did not understand what an Ombuds Office does.
She explained that for Recommendation 3.5 (“Reconvene the Presidential Task Force on Alcohol and Other Drug Use”), the Task Force wanted to make sure that it was avoiding language throughout that was victim-blaming. She elaborated that the Task Force had changed the recommendation to emphasize that perpetrators use alcohol and other drugs as tools to facilitate sexual assault, and that perpetrators often do not drink (or do not drink very much). She encouraged anyone who had not yet read the Task Force’s report to do so, adding that it was a very important report, and that it made her think very differently about the campus. She continued that the Task Force had also noticed that there were a lot of recommendations in the report that had not yet been implemented, and that it wanted to make sure that it pointed the administration in the right direction. With that, Professor Stabile called for questions and indicated that she might call on her Task Force colleagues to answer questions that were outside of her area.
An unidentified speaker mentioned that it was difficult to get quantitative data on FSL sanctions, and asked Professor Stabile if she could elaborate on why that might be. The speaker added that it was his understanding that any FSL sanctions would go through the administration.
Professor Stabile stated that it was her understanding that this office had been through a number of transitions, and noted that the Task Force was told that data did not exist on things like social probation and suspension. She added that she found the lack of data puzzling, because the social media site, GreekRank, made it apparent which fraternities had been on social probation. She stated that the Task Force also had questions about sanctions such as: “Who oversees the sanctions?” and, “What do you have to do get taken off of social probation?” She stated that these were that kinds of questions the Task Force could not find answers for.
The unidentified speaker asked if it was wrong to think that FSL sanctions needed to be done in coordination with the University Administration.
Professor Stabile asked Sandy Weintraub, Director of Student Conduct and Community Standards, to comment.
Sandy Weintraub (Director of Student Conduct & Community Standards) confirmed that sanctions were done in coordination with the administration. He added that FSL was under new direction (having recently moved to the Dean of Students Office) and that this had improved the coordination between the staff that help to administrate Fraternity and Sorority Life and the Dean of Students Office, where Student Conduct is located. He stated that since August, there had been a lot of steps taken to help coordinate that effort in order to make it more consistent, but that there were still some deficiencies. He added that the University was currently implementing a system in which there was a clear coordination between Student Life and Dean of Students Office Administration, and the sanctions that are done both nationally and within FSL staff.
Professor Stabile stated that she felt that there still needed to be more deliberation on the question of sanctions, who oversees them, and how publicized they are. She added that information about sanctions seemed to be public safety information that students should have.
A second unidentified speaker, referring to recommendation 2.5, asked if the Director of Sexual Violence Prevention and Education was a position that currently exists.
Professor Stabile confirmed that the position currently exists.
Rita Radostitz (Planning, Public Policy and Management) stated that she had a question about the dollar figures. She stated that quite a few of the recommendations indicated that they had dollar figures, but did not list them. She asked when, and how, the Task Force would be evaluating what all of the recommendations were going to cost. She also asked what the University would be putting aside in order to designate resources for the recommendations.
Professor Stabilestated that there were lots of things the University could put aside in the interest of making women safe. She added that the Task Force was aware of not putting a price tag on the big item: centralizing resources. She explained that part of this was because the Task Force still needed to think about what that office might look like. She added that the revised deadline for a price tag on centralizing resources was March 1st. She stated that by that time, the working group assigned to that task would have reviewed what other campuses are doing, and generated some ideas. She stated that there would also have to be many conversations with a range of different people about the Task Force's expectations and what it could actually do. She commented that her experiences with donors at the University of Pittsburgh had given her some insight in regards to the current capital campaign at the UO. She relayed that a donor to the Women’s and Gender Studies program at the University of Pittsburgh had been motivated by her experience as a victim of sexual assault when she was an undergraduate. She added that the donor had said that Women's Studies saved her life. Professor Stabile stated that she thought that the University was missing an opportunity if it did not think about the fact that so many of its alumni were survivors of sexual violence, and that they had a stake in making the campus safe for women. She stated that she thought that the University needed to be thinking about people who might be interested in funding efforts to reduce—and ultimately end—sexual violence.
Professor John Bonine (Law) stated that—focusing only on rape and attempted rape—400 students per year at the University were victims. He added that President Coltrane had said that one was too many. He posed the rhetorical question of how much it would cost to bring the number to zero. He stated that if the University intended to spend at least ten thousand dollars on prevention for each victim of sexual assault, that it would require four million dollars. He stated the one hundred thousand dollars per victim would require forty million dollars total. He questioned thinking that even a million dollars was spending too much money for 400 women per year. He added that it seemed that the University should be spending a few million per year, but that it should calculate it by the number of women it was trying to prevent ever being assaulted.
Senator Regina Psaki (Romance Languages) stated that she wanted to second the point. She asserted that not only were there possible resources that hadn’t been investigated, but also that the University had been neglecting to pay the cost of doing business by: not centralizing its efforts; by not prioritizing, foregrounding, and shining a halogen lamp on the issue; and by not having “the hard conversations,” which—despite their potential to be embarrassing, stigmatizing, or hurtful—are necessary, nonetheless. She stated that by drawing a merciful veil over it, the University had not gotten to a very bad place. She continued that this had the galvanizing effect of generating all the work done by the Task Force. She asserted that the University was only a university because of students and faculty, and that if it was not spending the money required to keep its students safe, then it had abdicated its moral obligation. She stated that it was not an issue of "How much is too much?" or, "What will make Scott's eyes bulge out?" but, "What will really have an effect in shifting the culture considerably?” She stated that zero was not the target, because humans were imperfect, but added that the University should be a place where people are aware and ashamed of being violent, rather than aware and ashamed of having someone work violence on them.
Andrew Lubash (Student Senator) stated that he had a question about recommendation 1.5.1, the suspension on the expansion of FSL. He stated that he knew it was one of the more controversial recommendations, and asked if the Task Force had had any conversations with the Division of Student Life and the houses that were planning on coming to the University that did not yet have charters. He stated that he could think of two sororities and two fraternities that were already planning on coming, and asked whether or not they would be subjected to this suspension.
Professor Stabile stated that the issue had been discussed, and that it was something that would require further exploration. She stated that it was uncertain whether the suspension would mean preventing the expansion of the chapters that were already underway, or if it would be about a percentage cap. She added that there needed to be more conversations with FSL. She stated that the more the University could talk candidly about the problems that FSL has, the closer it could get to figuring out what kinds of FSL-specific prevention programs might be needed before expansion should occur.
Professor Stabile took a moment to follow up on Senator Psaki's comment. She stated that the University had been presented with a very unique opportunity, because the Task Force brought together a lot of people who typically did not work together. She stated that it prompted discussion among individuals involved with prevention about their needs for assessment, and that it got researchers thinking about projects that they might be able to do with people in Student Life. She added that it was very exciting and interesting, because no one really knows with any certainty what will work. She stated that a review of the prevention literature, and even bystander interventions, got results that were very mixed. She emphasized that the University had a chance to innovate, and to approach the issue very deliberately as scholars, practitioners, and first responders.
Whitney Logue stated that she had been a peer educator with the Sexual Wellness Advocacy Team for four years. She acknowledged the Task Force’s commitment to prevention of sexual violence, sexual assault, and sexual misconduct, but stated that she wished to know how recommendations like self-defense would affect prevention directly. She noted that peer education and consent education deal directly with preventing perpetrative behavior. She also asked how self-defense would affect accountability on campus.
Professor Stabile asked Professor Jocelyn Hollander to comment.
Professor Hollander (Sociology) started off by stating that there was a lot of confusion about the self-defense recommendation. She stated that there was a belief that preventing sexual violence meant focusing only on perpetrators. She acknowledged that the Task Force believed that it was crucially important to focus on perpetrators and say, "Perpetrators should stop their behavior." However, she stated that as a sociologist, she knew that this change was not going to happen overnight, and that it would never be perfect. She added that there would always be perpetrators—even if the University did the best kind of perpetrator prevention it could. She stated that the Task Force was recommending that, in addition to the other perpetrator-focused prevention strategies, the University also provide more self-defense training for women on campus. She stated that self-defense training—which she acknowledged was the subject of her research—had actually been shown to be effective in preventing and interrupting sexual violence. She stated that this was in contrast to other prevention strategies, for which the results were quite mixed. She emphasized that this was not an "either,or" issue, but a "both, and." She stated that it was her hope that the self-defense training was a short-term measure, and that eventually, the topic of her research would go away. She added that until that time comes, self-defense training would be something that could actually help people on the campus immediately, and did not require having to wait for the entire culture to change.
Professor Stabile added that people tend to forget that women's self-defense training also has the transformative potential to change women's relationships with spaces, their own body, and the world around them. She reiterated that this was not an "either, or" issue, and that self-defense was just one helpful tool in the menu of tools that the Task Force was putting together. She added that it was something that was also already underway on campus, and that the Task Force thought it was wise to strengthen the programs on campus that are known to have efficacy.
An unidentified speaker stated that he was also a member of the Sexual Wellness Advocacy Team, and that while he was not against the self-defense trainings, he thought it was more important to be teaching about consent, since a portion of the Conduct Code about sexual assault involved explicit consent. He stated that this was something that the Sexual Wellness Advocacy taught that self-defense training did not.
Professor Stabile stated that she was not sure that the last comment was correct, but that it was not an "either, or" issue. She stated that the Task Force was arguing that both of those programs needed to be better-supported and have better resources, because there was no magic bullet. She reiterated that the solution was not going to be SWAT alone, or women's self-defense alone, or any one thing. She stated that the Task Force thought that the more opportunities students had to encounter messaging and various forms of training, the better off they were going to be. She stated that for some people, women's self-defense was going to be something that was really helpful, and that for other people, it was going to be SWAT. She reiterated again that it was not an "either,or" issue, but rather a question of, "How do we strengthen both at once?"
The unidentified speaker agreed with Carol Stabile, but stated that he was hoping that there would be a way that SWAT could have a bigger presence on campus, since there was also a big emphasis on inclusivity.
Professor Stabile suggested that she could help facilitate a conversation with the Standing Committee and talk about ways in which the University might be able to expand SWAT. She added that there had already been conversations about ways that the Task Force could better assess SWAT and other programs on campus that were in the mix, too.
Ayasha Benninghoven introduced herself and noted that she was also in SWAT. She stated that her question was also about women's self-defense. She added that she had taken a self-defense class and found it very useful, but that she worried that—given the University of Oregon’s focus on inclusivity—calling something “women's self-defense” did not take into account that there are also male-identified survivors, as well as survivors of all different sexual orientations and genders. She reiterated that she thought women's self-defense was important, but that she believed that this importance extended to other people, as well.
Professor Stabile stated that she knew how problematic the additive approach could be in having a list of people to whom the self-defense courses were specifically targeted. She asked Professor Hollander if she had anything she wanted to add.
Professor Hollander stated that in the P.E. Department, where she was currently helping co-teach a self-defense class, there were a number of self-defense classes that were available—many of which, she understood, were largely populated by male students. She stated that the women's self-defense class was the only one that was targeted towards women. She stated that the teacher of the class, Ryan Kelly, and she had talked a lot about developing specific classes for male survivors and men who were interested in self-defense. She stated that this was something that was on the horizon but had not been implemented yet, and was thus left out of the Report.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) stated that he wanted to say something about the cost of the proposals, which he agreed was substantial. He stated that the cost of not doing something was also very large. He stated that part of this cost was the economic damage to the victims—which was extremely large—and part was just the financial cost, to the University, of not doing anything. He added that he was reminded of statements he had received from the Public Records Office regarding UO's legal billings. He stated that in the last month, the University had spent about 70 thousand dollars on lawyers from the Harrang Long Gary Rudnick Law Firm, and that he assumed that this was partly to deal with the aftermath of the basketball rape allegations. He stated that the incident was going to cost the University millions of dollars to deal with, and asserted that anything the University could do to reduce the potential for that happening again was a very good investment. He stated that he thought that it was important to not see the proposals just as expenses.
Naomi Wright introduced herself as an undergraduate student. She pointed out that the 400-victim figure from the Campus Climate Survey was large, but that it was potentially larger if one considered the students that were not able to respond to the survey because they no longer attended the University as a result of their experience. She stated that perhaps in an insensitive way, this could be interpreted as dollars that were not going to the University, and as a cost of the violence that was going on.
Warren Light (Director of the Wesley Center)stated that as far as costs were concerned, another point that had not been discussed was the fact that there was a disproportionate investment in male students. He stated that, per capita—including the Athletics Department—there was a tremendous investment in male students that was not equal to the investment in female students. He added that he thought that people needed to start looking at the issue in a perspective that accounted for this discrepancy.
Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan (Chemistry) stated that as he listened to the previous comments about cost, it occurred to him that there seemed to be an underlying feeling that it would be taking money away from education, which is the University's mission. He asserted that it was the job of the University to educate the whole student—including the moral growth of students. He stated that the students were watching their teachers to learn their values, and asked what would be taught by not investing in these issues.
Rita Radostitz (Planning, Public Policy, and Management) stated that she wanted to clarify that she was not, in any way, intending to say, "No, we shouldn't spend this money." She added that she was asking about money in order to get a sense of how costly the most expensive recommendation (i.e., to create an office to centralize resources) would be. She stated that this recommendation was not designed specifically as a service to students, and that it was designed to create administrators. She acknowledged the importance of the recommendation, and stated that she was just curious about it. She reiterated that she was not criticizing it.
Professor Stabile stated that she wanted to intervene, and asserted that Radostitz's comment did criticize the recommendation by suggesting that its purpose was to create additional administration rather than to serve students. She added that there were some comments in the feedback that used the term "bloat." She dismissed this, indicating that the scope of the problem demanded that the management of the centralized office be someone’s full-time job. She added that this would also be something that had the potential to create institutional research and generate scholarship, and that added that, sadly, there was going to be more and more grant money to study this problem in years to come. She stated that she wished that it was not true, but asserted that there was a sexual assault industry that was growing up around this issue that would—in a crass, materialist sense—benefit the University in many ways that were not just administrative. She added that, as someone who had done a lot of administrative work, she was very angry about the critical language; she noted that there was a great deal of work that goes on at an institution that faculty is unable to do. She stated that the scope of that problem was such that, unless it was someone's job specific job, it was not going to get done. She stated that she was tired of seeing issues having to do with women shunted off the agenda under the assumption that another woman would pick it up as part of her already full portfolio. She urged that this was not the way to proceed. She stated that the University was facing a huge problem, and that it needed to be serious and devote the resources necessary to deal with it.
Naomi Wright observed that many of the recommendations had to do with beginning things, or beefing things up, and asked if the University could do some sort of before-and-after testing to measure the efficacy of the programs, and to analyze whether they should continue to be funded in the future. She added that this might be difficult to do.
Professor Stabile stated that the issue had come up to have an assessment plan before the University undertook expansions or new efforts. She stated that she thought it was an exciting prospect for research to be done on the problems that the University was confronting, as it would better equip the University to create effective prevention efforts. She added that having all of the stakeholders at the table was amazing, and stated that she thought there were going to be really interesting research projects and questions that would come up over the next few months.
Professor Bonine stated that he had looked at some of the news releases for MIT, Harvard, and other institutions, and that these places were committing a lot more money to hiring staff than UO could even imagine. He stated that other institutions were really investing in this issue, and that it seemed to him that for UO to invest in this issue would be to play catch-up. He asserted that UO was certainly not investing to become a leader, and added that he thought UO should be a leader.
Professor Stabile thanked those present and turned the podium over to Senate President Kyr.
Senate President Kyr thanked Carol Stabile for the time and effort she had devoted as Co-Chair of the Task Force. He also thanked its other Co-Chair, Randy Sullivan, and the rest of the Task Force.
Senate President Kyr stated that next on the agenda was the motion: Proposed Revision to Student Conduct Code Dealing with Sexual Misconduct. He stated that the Senate would begin with Part 3 of the motion, and noted that the sponsor of the motion was Professor John Bonine.
Professor John Bonine (Law) stated that he wanted to start with Part 5 and then move to Parts 6, 7, 8, 3, and 9. He explained that he believed that Part 3 could lead to longer discussion, and that many of the other parts would be easier to deal with. He asked if the Senate could move Part 5 of the motion, and address Part 3 later in the meeting.
Senate President Kyr approved of beginning with Part 5, and added that he wanted everyone to know that if they did not get through all six of the motions, they would certainly address them toward the beginning of the agenda at the next meeting. He stated that these were very important motions, and that they deserved the full attention of the Senate.
Professor Bonine asked that reading the "whereas" clause be skipped, because it was identical for every motion.
Senate President Kyr stated that he believed it was possible to do this since the Senate was not actually voting on the "whereas" clause, but on the motion itself. He reminded Professor Bonine that he would need to secure a second to do so.
Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan( Chemistry) offered a second.
Professor Bonine stated that the current Student Conduct Code refers to the "health, safety and well-being of the community," and that it was unclear if "the community" in this instance applied only to people in the University community, or if it included people beyond it. He stated that the suggested change was simply to use "anyone" instead of “the community.” He stated that the motion also proposed to add the words "including sexual assault" so that it would read: "Academic dishonesty, and violations affecting the health, safety and well-being of anyone, including sexual assault, are deemed the most severe." He stated that this language had already been vetted extensively with Sandy Weintraub of Student Life, and that this was reflected in the green text: "Sandy Weintraub agrees with this change and says that it reflects current practice." He added that these changes would simply update the Code to reflect what is already done.
Senator Jennifer Ellis (Finance) suggested that "anyone" be placed at the end, and then that "including sexual assault" be placed after "violations."
Senate President Kyrasked Senator Ellis if she wished to make a motion to amend.
Professor Bonine stated that he was fine with the change.
Senator Ellis made a motion to amend the wording so that "including sexual assault" followed "violations" (i.e., “Academic dishonesty and violations, including sexual assault, affecting the health, safety and well-being of anyone, are deemed the most severe...")
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for discussion. Hearing none, he called a voice vote. The motion to amend carried unanimously. Moving back to discussion of the motion, Senate President Kyr recognized Senator John Davidson.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) asked if "anyone" would mean, for instance, that a person accused of resisting arrest while attending a protest in New York City would come under the coverage of this provision.
There was an inaudible response from Professor Bonine, to which Senator Davidson replied that the hypothetical person had presumably hurt the officer in this case. He asked if it was true that the Code would not be limited to the University community.
Professor Bonine stated that it was not the act of resisting arrest, but rather the act of hurting of someone, that was important. He stated that the Code would include students hurting people—both sexually, and violently—anywhere in the world. He added that he believed that if an act of violence happened because of a student, then it would be appropriate to get involved in the Student Conduct Process regardless of where it occurred. He stated that the Code would simply say that students are responsible for behavior that affects the health, safety, and well-being of other people—and that this would not be limited to the University community. He added that having restrictions (e.g., “only if you assault somebody on the campus") made no sense to him. He stated that “community" itself was a broad but undefined term, and that it made sense to make it more clear.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senate Vice-President Sullivan.
Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan (Chemistry) stated that the Senate was re-hashing old issues, noting that it had already passed a policy that expanded jurisdiction. He stated that all this motion was saying was that Student Life reserves the option to move to these sanctions. He reiterated that the jurisdiction was already there, and asked that the Senate not argue about jurisdiction.
Senate President Kyr called for further comments and questions. Seeing none, he called for a voice vote. The motion carried with one vote opposed.
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would move on to Part 6 of the motion, and asked Professor Bonine if he would like to move it.
Professor Bonine moved the motion.
Senate President Kyr requested a second. The motion was seconded by an unidentified senator, and Senate President Kyr invited Professor Bonine to provide background.
Professor Bonine stated that this motion also dealt with something that was already in practice but had not yet been written into the Code, and that he and Professor Forell had decided that this should be done. He stated that the purpose of the motion was to provide an element of equality by affording victims of assault the same accommodations and support in the Student Conduct Process that were provided to the accused. He stated that this was also recommended in the Dear Colleague Letter of May 2011. He proposed that the Code be amended to include the language: "Complainants—particularly in cases involving sexual misconduct—should often be accorded certain accommodations, as provided below." He stated that these accommodations were standard things that the person accused already had. Specifically, "a student accusing another student […] can expect the following procedural accommodations: "(a) To be allowed reasonable time to prepare for any participation in the conference; (b) To be accorded the opportunity to offer a relevant response to any assertions made; (c) To propose relevant witnesses and submit suggested questions to the Director; (d) To be assured of confidentiality, in accordance with the terms of the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and Oregon law; (e) To request that any person conducting a disciplinary conference be disqualified on the ground of personal bias; (f) To be protected against retaliation for filing a complaint; (g) To have an advisor of their choice present at the conference provided that the advisor's schedule does not unreasonably delay the proceeding. The Director shall determine what constitutes an 'unreasonable' delay; (h) Upon request in the case of sexual misconduct, to be present in a separate room instead of in the same room as the accused student."
Professor Bonine stated that these provisions—except for the ones that are specific to the accused—are simply the same rights that already exist for a person who is accused. He added that Sandy Weintraub agreed that when cases involved hearings, these rights were already practiced. Professor Bonine pointed out that these rights would now involve non-hearings, as well.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor to discussion and comments. He recognized Senator Ellis.
Senator Ellis stated that she was puzzled by the word "often" in the first sentence. She stated that she did not know why it was there.
Professor Bonine stated that he believed it was there in order to make it clear that accommodations were not mandatory in all instances.
Senate President Kyr asked if Professor Bonine had said "offer" was the word in question.
Professor Bonine clarified that the word in question was "often," as it appeared in: "Complainants should often be accorded certain accommodations." He stated that it was intended to mean that people would not always get every accommodation, because they would not be appropriate in some instances.
Sandy Weintraub (Director of Student Conduct & Community Standards) agreed with Professor Bonine. He stated, as background, that the whole section was a reaction to the fact that all of these rights were enumerated for the accused. He reiterated that these were basically the exact same rights given to the accused—almost verbatim. He added that he thought the word "often" allowed for the appropriateness in each particular case to be considered. He added that Student Conduct cases can be peculiar, and that they often needed different things. He stated again that the idea behind the section was equity—to make sure that the complainant and the accused have the exact same rights in the process when it is appropriate.
Professor Bonine stated that this was the only place "often" was used, and that he was happy to remove it. He suggested that it be replaced by: "should be accorded certain accommodations, such as..." He asked if he could to move to have the wording changed.
Senate President Kyr stated that he could.
Professor Bonine moved to remove the word "often."
Senate President Kyr requested a second, which was received. He opened the motion for discussion. None followed, and he called a vote. The motion carried unanimously, and Senate President Kyr returned the discussion to the main motion.
An unidentified speaker expressed curiosity regarding the term "advisor." He asked if there were any limitations regarding it, and if an advisor could actually speak on behalf of the respondent.
Sandy Weintraub stated that, in the interest of time, he did not want to linger on this topic. He stated that an advisor could be any person of the accused or complainant's choosing. He added that there had been a shift to using administrative conferences rather than offering a choice between an administrative conference and a panel hearing. He stated that there were less enumerated, codified rights about what an administrative conference was. He stated that in a panel hearing, which often had the appearance of a trial, it was more important to have very specific roles for an advisor so that he or she would not take over the entire proceeding. He explained that an administrative conference was literally a meeting in an office—usually between two to four people—that was a lot easier to regulate. He added that it was also a lot easier to have a discussion in which an advisor was allowed to speak. He stated that it was up to the discretion of the administrator to decide when an advisor was being disruptive to the process, as well. He acknowledged that it was rather vague, but stated that the code regarding administrative conferences was something that needed to be further developed before the Board of Trustees looked at it again.
There was an inaudible question, to which Sandy Weintraub responded that either side was welcome to have an advisor of their choosing.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Espinoza.
Senator David Espinoza (Counseling & Testing Center) stated that, in section 6g, "advisor" was spelled two different ways. He moved for consistent spelling in 6g.
Senate President Kyr stated that he thought this could be a friendly amendment. No one objected, and Senator Espinoza's amendment was accepted. Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Koopman.
Senator Colin Koopman (Humanities) stated that he thought "shall," rather than "should," would be more clear in the bottom sentence of the top paragraph (i.e., “Complainants shall be accorded certain accommodations…). He explained that he thought a student reading the Code might think that they should get accommodations, and that this did not mean that they would, in fact, get them. He added that if this was the intention, it would make the clause between the commas unnecessary. He also asked if all complainants would get these accommodations, adding that while he liked the idea of explicitly stating that it was for complainants in cases of sexual misconduct, it seemed that there was no administrative reason to include this. He posited that it would only create confusion.
Professor Bonine stated that the intention was—in all of the modifications—to specifically address sexual misconduct. He added that he was happy to go with "shall" versus "should."
Senate President Kyr stated that someone would need to make the amendment. Senator Koopman moved to replace "shall" with "should." The motion was seconded, and the amendment was put up for discussion. Senate President Kyr recognized University Ombudsperson, Bruce MacAllister.
Bruce MacAllister (University Ombudsperson) stated that he was concerned about changing the world "should" to "shall," because “shall” was traditionally interpreted as mandatory language. He stated that the intent of using "should" was to afford complainants whatever accommodations they deemed were appropriate (working within the discretion with the Student Conduct Code Administrators). He stated that using "shall" would result in mandatory accommodations whether the complainant felt that it was appropriate to their circumstance or not. He added that he just wanted people to be aware that this was how “shall” would be interpreted.
Senate President Kyr requested a response from the maker of the motion.
Professor Bonine stated that he didn’t think it was a problem, because all of the accommodations were already discretionary, except for one. He pointed out, for example, that to be “allowed reasonable time” did not mean that the time would be granted if it was not reasonable. He added that he believed the word "shall” should be used in place of "should.”
Senate President Kyr requested further discussion.
Tim Hicks (Director of UO Conflict & Dispute Resolution Graduate Program) asked if there was any concern that this would not parallel the rights accorded to the accused.
Senator Koopman responded that rules currently read that "students accused can expect the following procedural protections." He stated that he thought that this was closer to the intended meaning of "shall" than "should."
Sheryl Eyster (Associate Dean of Students) stated, with regards to the advisor, that it was her understanding that ASUO legal services gave free service and legal advice to any kind of accused student. She noted that same right for services was not given to a complainant. She stated that she thought this was a huge gap regarding equity in the process.
Professor Bonine clarified that Sheryl Eyster's comment would be the subject of Motion 9.
Senate President Kyr recognized Rita Radostitz.
Rita Radostitz (Planning, Public Policy and Management) asked if the "reasonable amount of time" intersected with Title IX's requirement that matters be handled within a certain time period. She asked if "reasonable" was defined anywhere.
Professor Bonine stated that "reasonable," in this case, did not apply to time, but to accommodations. He stated that the word itself was not defined, but that reasonable meant “what a reasonable person would assume.” He added that there was another motion coming up on the question of how long Student Conduct could take before it actually began the process. He asked that remaining speakers consider whether each point of debate was worth the time, given that there were other motions to get through, and asked those present to consider whether the Senate might want to move to a vote.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Hyatt.
Senator Mary Ann Hyatt (Law) stated that it did not make sense to her to retain the clause: "particularly in cases involving sexual misconduct." She explained that the language "complainants shall be accorded certain accommodations," was not limited to a particular group. She moved to remove the clause so that the language would read: "Complainants shall be accorded certain accommodations..."
Senate President Kyr requested further comments and questions.
Professor Bonine observed that Senator Hyatt's change had not drawn any opposition.
Senate President Kyr called for a voice vote. Senator Koopman's amendment carried unanimously, and the Senate moved back to the main motion. Seeing no further comments or questions, he called a voice vote on the main motion, which also carried unanimously.
8. OTHER BUSINESS
8.1 Distinguished Service Award: Executive Session
Senate President Kyr, noting the time, indicated that the Executive Session was scheduled to begin. He stated that the discussion on the Student Conduct Code could be extended if it was the will of the Senate.
Professor Bonine stated that he thought extending the time might be a mistake, because there was an important faculty union meeting beginning at 5:00 p.m.
Senate President Kyr offered his assurance that the Senate was committed to continuing with Professor Bonine's motions on November 19th at the start of the meeting.
Professor Bonine noted that the Senate had covered two of the motions, and that there were five to go.
Senate President Kyr stated that by his count, there were just four motions that remained to be addressed. He asked that the Senate thank John Bonine and Caroline Forell for all of their work on the motions. He stated that the Senate would be going into an Executive Session, which meant that all those who were not Senators have to leave the room. He invited the non-Senators to come to the next meeting for further discussion, and thanked them for their participation.
Senate President Kyrcalled the November 5, 2014 meeting of the University Senate to a close at 5:00 p.m.
Minutes of the UO Senate Meeting for October 22, 2014
Present: Paul Dassonville, Jennifer Freyd, Weiyong He, Michael Price, Reza Rejaie, Randy Sullivan, John Davidson, Michael Dreiling, William Harbaugh, Jason Brown, Deborah Healey, Geraldine Poizat-Newcomb, Regina Psaki, Donna Shaw, Ron Lovinger, Richard Margerum, Charles Lachman, Marilyn Nippold, Deborah Olson, Debra Merskin, Victoria Mitchell, Edward Teague, Robin Clement, Jennifer Ellis, Alexandre Dossin, Robert Kyr, Monique Balbuena, Lisa Raleigh, Debra Thurman, Abel Cerros, Samantha Cohen, Quin Haaga, Kate Klosno, Andrew Lubash, John Ahlen, Theodora Ko Thompson, Jimmy Murray, Mike Strain
Absent: Jun Li, Ken Prehoda, Jane Kramer, Bruce McGough, Diane Dugaw, Gordon Sayre, Laura Leete, Jerry Rosiek
Excused: Miriam Deutsch, Colin Koopman, Mary Ann Hyatt, David Espinoza
1. CALL TO ORDER
Senate President Robert Kyr (Music) called the October 22, 2014 meeting of the University of Oregon Senate to order at 3:00 p.m. in room 115 Lawrence Hall. He thanked those in attendance and stated that the current meeting—in addition to being one of the most important of the year—would possibly be one of the most important meetings in the history of the University.
3. STATE OF THE UNIVERSITY
3.1 Connie Ballmer, Chair of the Presidential Search Committee Presentation and Discussion
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would hear remarks from UO Board of Trustees member, Connie Ballmer, who had been invited to speak about the Presidential search. Senate President Kyr explained that Ballmer was the Chair of the Search Committee, and commented that she had an amazing record of service, which he took a moment to relate to the Senate:
Connie Ballmer of Bellevue, Washington, grew up in Oregon City and received her bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Oregon in 1984. She now serves as a community volunteer and advocate for the well-being of children. She manages the Ballmer family's philanthropic giving, which focuses on improving the outcomes of the most vulnerable and economically disadvantaged families through grant-making, collaboration, and investments in systems reform. Ballmer began her career by working in both the Portland and Bellevue offices of Waggener Edstrom public relations, which serves the high tech sector. She has served on a variety of non-profit boards for organizations including Overlake Hospital, National Public Radio, KCTS Television, and Lakeside School. She was a member of the UO's Journalism Advancement Council from 1993 to 1994. She says that her most time-intensive and fulfilling project over the past 21 years has been raising her three sons. She partnered with the University of Washington School of Social Work and the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services to create Partners for Our Children (POC) in 2006. In providing better data analysis of the problems faced by individuals involved with Washington's state child welfare system, POC strives to influence policy and practice, helping caseworkers, kids, and families achieve better outcomes. Ballmer serves as strategic advisor and board member for POC.”
Senate President Kyr invited Ballmer to address the Senate about the search process, which he noted was already well underway.
Connie Balmer thanked Senate President Kyr. She stated that it was a pleasure to be before the Senate, and relayed that the newly appointed Board of Trustees looked forward to getting to know the Senate and building a productive relationship. She stated that she had come to speak about the Presidential search, adding that the Board Chair, Chuck Lillis, would be coming to the Senate November 19th, and that he would be able to address broader issues then. She thanked Senate President Kyr and stated that he had been very helpful to the Board in the early days of the search. She explained that the search had started in the previous month, and that Senate President Kyr had already participated by advising the Board Chair, Chuck Lillis, on how to improve the structure of the search. She added that Senate President Kyr had also advised the Board on the membership of the Search and Advisory Committees by encouraging them to include more faculty, which had since been done.
Ballmer expressed her belief that the Presidential Search was a wonderful process, not only because it would ultimately lead to the selection of a great President for the University, but also because it was proving to be an amazing community builder that had enabled the University to get together and have conversations about the state of the University, the challenges it faced, the direction it wanted to go, and what it wanted to see in the new President. She stated that she was excited about the feedback, questions, and collaboration that she had already seen, and added that she hoped that those present would think about the search process not only in terms of hiring a great individual, but also in terms of community-building for the campus and the broader community.
Ballmer stated that she would start out by addressing confidentiality in the search. She stated that the search was a "closed search," which meant that the anonymity of candidates needed to be preserved in order to avoid jeopardizing their current positions. She stated that this was necessary in order to attract a top-quality pool of candidates, and to ensure that they would not drop out of the search for fear of losing their current jobs.
Ballmer stated that the search was in what she called “Phase I,” which involved laying the groundwork for the work ahead. She elaborated that this included convening the Search and Advisory Committees, as well as interviewing search firms. She stated that it was very important that the University bring in a professional search firm to help with the identification and vetting of candidates. She added that she hoped a decision on the search firm would be made in the next couple of weeks.
Ballmer stated that the process of gathering input from people who care about the University of Oregon had begun. She observed that many people had ideas about what the University should be looking for in a President, and stated that it was important to hear those ideas. She noted that a series of public forums would be held to provide opportunities for such discussion. She elaborated that there would be a forum in Eugene for the broader Eugene community, one on campus devoted to students, another on campus targeted at faculty and staff, and one in Portland. She stated that the dates for the public forums were posted on the Presidential Search website. She added that additional input would be collected from people via online surveys that would inquire about a range of topics, such as: the top few characteristics that people would like to see in a President, challenges that the new President might face, reasons why people believe that being the President would be a great job, and what would make candidates want to come to Oregon. She stated that some of the surveys were already starting to be returned, and that she was having a great time reading them. She stated that there was an amazing amount of similarity among the issues that were arising, and that she thought it would really help prioritize what to look for in the next President.
She explained that the search was in the early stages of completing the job description. She noted that the existing description had been written roughly three years ago, and remarked that it was amazing how much had already changed at University since then. She stated that the University was in the process of updating, fine-tuning, and polishing the description, and added that she hoped it would be ready in the next month or two.
She noted that the search was also working on a communications plan that would help them explain to potential candidates why they should come to Oregon. She stated that there were a lot of positive things going on at the University and that it was important to share this with potential candidates. She added that the search had encountered a possible misperception that the University of Oregon was floundering due to its multiple recent changes in leadership. She stated that, in truth, she believed that people were moving ahead—not waiting for a savior, and not floundering. She asserted that there was good work going on at the University, and that the search needed to tell that story.
She stated that the University had already started receiving resumes, but noted that the vetting process had not yet begun. She stated that it was important for the search to be proactive, and to go out and find great potential candidates. She explained that part of this was asking for nominations, and that the search would develop a methodology for doing so. She related that, for instance, the search wanted to go to the Presidents of the other Pac-12 universities and say: "We are looking for a great candidate. Who do you know that might be out there?" She reiterated that the search wanted to be very proactive in seeking out excellent candidates.
She stated that the first phase of the search would hopefully last through December, adding that the search would share as much news as possible as it went along. She reiterated that it would be a pretty quiet process, and that the search would start getting some candidates in and vetting them in the winter. She also noted that there was no timeline for the search. She added that it would be ideal to find somebody sooner rather than later, but that the University did not have a need to find somebody by a certain date. She stated that if the search did not find an excellent candidate, it would keep looking. She added that Interim President Coltrane agreed that this was the correct approach. She stated that the search would work with urgency and speed, but that it would not rush.
Ballmer stated that she would now take questions. She also encouraged those present to provide their thoughts through the survey, adding that a link to the survey would be sent out to the Senators. She stated that the survey was probably the most helpful way to give feedback.
Senator Regina Psaki (Romance Languages) asked Ballmer if she could elaborate on what the advisory panel would be doing. She explained that she had served on an analogous panel in the last presidential search.
Connie Ballmer stated that she was not able to answer everything right now, because the panel's role was still evolving. She stated that at present, there were two committees: the Search Committee, and the Advisory Committee. She stated that the Advisory Committee was made up of the constituents that could not get on the Search Committee. She added that it was impossible to do this kind of search with a large committee, and that this was the reason why the two committees were created. She stated that the Search Committee would be more involved with vetting the candidates early on, and that the Advisory Committee would probably be more involved later in the process, when there would be fewer candidates.
Senator Psaki asked Ballmer if she could be more specific.
Connie Ballmer stated that she was not ready to give numbers or specifics, adding that this was mostly because a search firm had not been chosen yet. She stated that it would also depend on the candidates, because some of them would require more confidentiality than others. She apologized for being vague, adding that the details were still vague at this point in the search. She stated that the current search was different from past searches in that the Board projects a lot more stability to some of the candidates. She added that the current search was also different from previous searches in that the Board of Directors would choose the President. She stated that the Search and Advisory Committees would give input, but that the new Board of Directors would make the final decision on who the President would be.
Senator Andrew Lubash (Student Senator) asked for clarification regarding the difference between the Search Committee and the Advisory Committee, given that neither of them had the ability to choose the new President.
Connie Ballmer stated that they would both provide input and help with vetting the candidates, and that the Board looked to the committees for guidance.
Senator Lubash asked if the Search and Advisory Committees had equal power.
Connie Ballmer stated that they did not have equal power.
Senator Lubash asked if the Search Committee had more power.
Connie Ballmer stated that the Search Committee would be more “hands on” in terms of looking at more of the candidates. She explained that the smaller size of the Search Committee allowed it to have more confidentiality when dealing with candidates.
Senator Lubash asked why students had not been included on the Search Committee, as they had in past searches.
Connie Ballmer stated that students were included.
Senator Lubash asked if he was correct in his understanding that students were serving not on the Search Committee, but only on the Advisory Committee.
Connie Ballmer stated that students were on the Advisory Committee.
Senator Lubash stated that he was fairly certain that students had been included on the Search Committee in the past.
Connie Ballmer stated that she did not know. She asked University Secretary, Angela Wilhelms, if she knew about the history of students being included on the Search Committee.
Secretary Angela Wilhelms stated that students had been included in the past, but that they did not have an actual vote on the selection of the President, because it was done by the OUS Board. She stated that a student would be on the Board of Trustees and would actually have a vote in the selecting the new President.
Connie Ballmer agreed, and stated that students would have more of a vote in the current search than in previous ones.
Senator Lubash stated that he was not sure how appropriate his next question was. He asked if it was strange that two of the people on the Search Committee were married.
Connie Ballmer asked if he would find it strange for two married people to work at the University.
Senator Lubash asked if they could be considered to be a kind of voting block. He added that it seemed strange to him, considering that there were only fourteen people on the committee.
Connie Ballmer stated that she would have to think about it, adding that she trusted both individuals.
Professor John Bonine (Law) asked Ballmer to give her personal philosophy about the role of the faculty and the University Senate in the governance of the University. He stated that some of those present would be very interested in hearing about how she saw higher education—and specifically, the University of Oregon—in terms of shared governance.
Connie Ballmer stated the question was an excellent one, and that she would defer to Chuck Lillis, who would be speaking to the Senate on November 19th. She added that she could answer any question on the Presidential Search.
Professor Bonine stated that he was very interested in hearing about the views of Board Members other than Chuck Lillis, because each Board Member was independent. He asked if Ballmer thought that the faculty and the University Senate had a governance role, or if they were advisory to a President who had the governing role.
Connie Ballmer stated that she would continue to defer in order to avoid getting into a lengthy conversation. She added that she would be happy to talk to Professor Bonine at another time, and requested further questions.
Naomi Wright introduced herself as an undergraduate student, and asked what the term of the President of the University was.
Connie Ballmer stated that one of the goals of the search was to have a President who would be with the University for a very long time. She asked Secretary Angela Wilhelms if there was an actual term for the President.
Secretary Wilhelms stated that the nationwide trend was that Presidents were staying in office for fewer years than in the past. She added that the contract of the last president was a three-year contract.
Connie Ballmer stated that seven to ten years would be a very nice tenure. She requested further questions. Seeing none, she thanked the attendees for their interest and their support. She stated that there would be updates on the search as the process continued.
Senate President Kyr thanked Ballmer for her comments. He stated that interested individuals could participate in the search through a Qualtrics Poll, and that he would send out a link coming days. He stated that the questions would be about the characteristics that people would like to see in the new President. He added that doing the poll was the easiest and most direct way to participate in the search, and stated that responses were needed. He stated that on November 6th, he would be co-hosting one of the campus forums, and that more details would be forthcoming.
Senate President Kyr informed the Senate that the next item on the agenda would be the report from the Senate Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support, Co-Chaired by Carol Stabile and Randy Sullivan. He shared his belief that this committee was one of the finest at the University, and took a moment to acknowledge each of its members individually.
Senate President Kyr noted that the period of public comment on the recommendations of the Task Force had begun. He stated that Task Force Co-Chair, Carol Stabile, would speak to the Senate about those recommendations; he asked that each member of the Senate reflect on them in preparation for the vote, which would take place at the November 5th meeting. He stated that a Qualtrics Poll would be made available to anyone at the University who wanted to weigh in about these recommendations. He added that there would also be a public forum on November 3rd devoted specifically to student response to the recommendations, but noted that everyone would be welcome to attend. He added that on November 4th, the Task Force would meet and continue to vet all of the recommendations for any revisions that had come in.
Senate President Kyr then welcomed Carol Stabile to the podium to deliver her remarks.
Professor Carol Stabile (Journalism & Communication, Women’s & Gender Studies) thanked Senate President Kyr and suggested that the next President of the University of Oregon should be committed to the fight against sexual violence. She stated that she wanted to read a couple of important paragraphs from the report that the Task Force had put together.
Professor Stabile stated that according to the Center of Disease Control and the White House, one in five women is sexually assaulted in college—most often by men they know. She added that preliminary results of a survey at the University of Oregon had shown similar numbers, with even higher numbers of women subjected to unwanted sexual contact by the time they graduate. She continued that more than 10,000 undergraduate women are enrolled at the University of Oregon, which means that 2,000 or more of the University’s undergraduate women experience rape or attempted rape during their college years, and that nearly 4,000 experience some kind of unwanted sexual contact. She stated that this meant that 400 or more additional women suffer rape or attempted rape for the first time every year—an average of 12 or more additional women during every one of the 33 weeks that school is in normal session. She added that including all non-consensual sexual contact, the average was more than 20 women harmed every week who had not been previously assaulted during their University education.
Professor Stabile reminded those present that these numbers represented young women who come to the University to learn. She stated that the Task Force had no data at this point on how many of them are prevented from completing their education because of sexual violence, but that the Task Force agreed that it needed to find out. She stated that the problem of campus sexual violence was not a new one, but that national attention to the problem had broken the silence and secrecy upon which sexual violence thrives. She stated that the University Senate Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support had grown out of the sense that national awareness of sexual violence—and its devastating effects on our community—provide opportunities to consciously and deliberately decide what kind of community the members of the University live in, and to move forward to change the institutional cultures that allow campus sexual violence to thrive.
She stated that sexual violence was part of the culture at many universities in the U.S., and that preventing sexual violence would require changing the culture of the University at all levels—beginning with efforts by the senior leadership. She asserted that the University could not be reluctant to name sexual violence on campus, or to discuss its prevalence—even when doing so entailed investigating and addressing problems within organizations that contribute to the social and cultural life of the University. She continued by stating that the University could not ignore the fact that, despite the relatively small number of students directly involved in their activities, athletics and fraternity and sorority life (FSL) play disproportionately powerful roles in facilitating or tolerating conditions in which sexual violence occurs on campus. She asserted that this observation was grounded in: decades of research on campus sexual violence; review of training materials made available to the President’s Review Panel by Athletics; the walls of secrecy that surround these cultures, their activities, and their problems, and the number of high-profile cases of sexual violence in athletics programs and Greek life nationwide.
She stated that in July 2014, the Senate Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support began meeting to address these problems. She stated that the draft of the final report was the result of well over 100 hours devoted to meeting; reading documents; talking to staff, faculty, students, survivors; using the White House's new guidelines to help focus our work; and having lots of discussion. She added that members of the Task Force were unified in caring deeply about the safety of all women at the University of Oregon, and that they had come to a very meaningful and important consensus about the recommendations. She stated that she wanted to thank the Task Force, and reminded those present that the Senate would not be discussing the recommendations today. She continued that the Task Force wanted the community to have an opportunity to review, digest, and consider the report before discussion began. She stated that the Senate had set up links for comments on each recommendation that could be accessed on the Senate website, and that there would also be a meeting with students from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Monday, November 3rd in the Ford Alumni Center Ballroom to hear further comments from students. She also thanked Senate President Kyr and Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan for their leadership, and Senate Executive Coordinator Lisa Mick Shimizu for her hard work in making the Task Force possible.
Professor Stabile then moved on to a power point presentation. She stated that the recommendations were divided into three categories: Critical Policy Changes, Prevention and Education, and Administrative Changes. She emphasized that these recommendations were just the beginning of addressing an enormous problem. She stated that the first recommendation, under the category of Critical Policy Changes, was “to create and provide space for an Office to Address Sexual and Gender Violence.” She stated that the Task Force felt very strongly about this recommendation, and that she hoped those present would read more about it. She added that many of the problems that had been discussed by the Task Force had to do with decentralized and minimal resources that are being devoted to the problem of sexual violence. She stated that the Task Force felt that the University of Oregon could become a leader in addressing this problem, and that they believed that centralizing resources would allow the University to create a prevention hub, a research center, and to make prevention someone's job. She stated that the additive approach to addressing sexual violence had not served the University well, and that the Task Force was very emphatic in stating that this recommendation was the most important one.
She stated that the Task Force's second recommendation was to “establish a Senate Standing Committee on Sexual and Gender Violence.” She added that a Senate Standing Committee who could continue to work with a centralized office, and with administration, was needed to continue to move forward on this problem. She stated that she was excited about the relationship between the Faculty Senate and all the members of the community, and that it provided a rare opportunity to come together to generate some changes on campus that are not as possible in many other places.
Professor Stabile stated that the third recommendation was to “engage with and fund the Campus Climate Survey.” She stated that the Obama Administration had identified the Campus Climate Survey as the number one best practice for figuring out what is going on the ground, and also for creating data-driven and effective policies to address sexual violence. She added that Dr. Freyd and her lab were already analyzing the results of the recent Campus Climate Survey, and that it was already giving the Task Force very important insights into the scope of the problem and how to move forward.
She stated that the Task Force’s fourth recommendation was to "empower the Senate Intercollegiate Athletics Committee (IAC) so that it can address sexual violence issues as they pertain to athletics." She stated that sexual violence thrives on secrecy, and she underscored the importance of working with higher-risk communities in order to move forward on this problem. She added that this meant sharing information and having open discussions, and that the Task Force believed that this recommendation would help the University move forward on that front.
Professor Stabile stated that the fifth recommendation was to "immediately suspend plans to expand Fraternity and Sorority Life (FSL).” She stated that there were problems in Fraternity and Sorority Life on campus; she added that the problems were not well-documented, but that in talking to undergraduates and reading social media, they became quite apparent. She stated that the Task Force believed that it was dangerous to be expanding FSL at this point in time without identifying, studying, and sorting through those problems, and trying to develop new and healthy traditions that are going to prevent some of the problems that had been seen over the last couple of years.
She added that the second part of the fifth recommendation was to assign research and analysis of FSL to the Senate Standing Committee's FSL Working Group. She explained that this was one of the areas where the Task Force found it very difficult to get data about what was happening. She stated that the Task Force thought that this was an area where aggregating data, in conjunction with putting together and publicizing reports, would improve the understanding of what was happening on campus.
She stated that the final recommendation (of the first category) was to “form an FSL Sexual Assault Task Force under the supervision of the Sexual Violence Prevention and Education Director of Student Life.” She stated that this recommendation came from one of the Task Force members, Andrew, who is a member of the FSL. She explained that it would bring together all of the Chapter Presidents so that they could have training in Title IX and sexual violence prevention, and work to address and enhance policies within the FSL.
Professor Stabile stated that the first recommendation under the Prevention and Education category (recommendation 2.1) was to “develop proposals for mandatory courses addressing gender, sexuality, and social inequality.” She stated that there was great enthusiasm for this recommendation, but that the Task Force quickly realized that this was a sizeable charge, and did not want to rush ahead with the recommendation. She continued that members of the working group that worked on this recommendation would be working in early January to put together a series of recommendations for possible courses.
She stated that recommendation 2.2.1 was to "provide additional staff for the Sexual Awareness Advocacy Team (SWAT)." She stated that SWAT—which is charged with the vast majority of education on campus—needed access to more resources, and that they needed to be able to expand their services. She added that SWAT also would like to have additional resources so they could assess their programming and determine what was working and what was not.
She stated that recommendation 2.2.2 was to "expand women's self-defense training." She stated that the Task Force would like to expand women's self-defense training so that it would be available to all undergraduates. She added that according to the University’s experts on women's self-defense, self-defense training is one of the forms of prevention whose efficacy is well-documented.
Professor Stabile stated that recommendation 2.3.1 was to "hire a Title IX Coordinator and 3 Deputy Coordinators." She stated that one of the things the Task Force learned in doing research was that many institutions are moving toward a structure where they have multiple Title IX Officers and a Central Coordinator. She stated that the Task Force thought that this would be really helpful at the University. She added that the three Deputy Coordinators would be divided into three separate portfolios: one for athletics, one for faculty and staff, and one for students.
Professor Stabile reminded those present that this presentation was just a summary, and that the report itself was rich in citations and analysis, which she urged them to look into.
She continued by stating that recommendation 2.3.2 was to "immediately implement Title IX training and education for fraternity and sorority life, athletics, band, forensics, and club sports." She stated that the Task Force had learned that there was not a lot of coordinated education on Title IX on campus. She stated that the University needed to make sure that this was happening. She added that the Task Force felt that this recommendation was really urgent, because these groups tend to be at higher risk for sexual assault and sexual violence.
She stated that recommendation 2.3.3 was to "institutionalize Title IX training for all other UO employees." She stated that this was meant to make sure that on an annual basis, all employees are receiving Title IX training so that they understand what their responsibilities are.
She stated that recommendation 2.4 was to "publish and disseminate a booklet on sexual violence resources for faculty and staff." She added that the Office of Equity and Inclusion had agreed to work on this, and that Dr. Yvette Alex-Assensoh had created one when she was at Indiana University.
She stated that recommendation 2.5 was to "coordinate programming and publicity aimed at sexual violence prevention." She stated that there were a lot of well-intentioned efforts to address sexual violence and sexual violence prevention on campus, but that not all of them were as informed as the Task Force would like them to be. She stated that the Task Force thought that the people engaging these efforts needed to make a more concerted effort to work with the Director of Sexual Violence Prevention and Education in order to understand the best practices in communicating about sexual violence, and the things to avoid. She added that this would also include classroom instructors who were interested in including some element of sexual violence training in their classroom. She stated that she thought it was really important for people to know what works and what does not work.
Professor Stabile stated that recommendation 3.1 was to "review policy on required (mandatory) reporting, OAR 003-0025, Subsection 2A." She stated that there was a huge amount of controversy on campus about "required reporting." She stated that the Task Force understood, via conversations with legal counsel, that the current iteration of required reporting rests on an interpretation of the OAR. She stated that the Task Force thought it was time to revisit the OAR in terms of best practices and White House recommendations. She added that one of the problems the Task Force had heard about required reporting was that no one seems to know what it means, or how to apply it. She stated that this recommendation would be discussed further during the February 25th meeting of the Senate.
She stated that recommendation 3.2 was to "conduct an audit of AAEO, and review sexual harassment policies and 'Grievance Procedures,' OAR 571-003." She stated that the Task Force had heard many, many concerns about AAEO, and that an audit would be a great place to start figuring out what was going well in AAEO and what was not. She added that the Task Force had heard enough serious problems from lots of different quarters for this recommendation to be considered a priority. She stated that the Task Force also wanted a review of the sexual harassment policies and the grievance procedures. She stated that the grievance procedures were very, very confusing and out-of-date, and that it was an opportune moment to review them and figure out how to move forward.
She stated that recommendation 3.3 was to “revise the ‘University of Oregon Conflicts of Interest and Abuses of Power: Sexual or Romantic Relationships with Students Policy’”. She stated that this was a confusing, unclear, and ineffective policy, and that the Task Force was working on a revision that would be discussed during the January Senate meeting. She added that she believed it would be available in advance of that meeting.
She stated that recommendation 3.4 was to “provide the Ombuds office with confidentiality.” She stressed how important this recommendation was—especially to people on campus who do not have anywhere else to turn and no other confidential office to speak to. She added that people need to be able to talk to people confidentially about conflicts and figure out strategies for resolving them, which is what Ombuds offices are for. She stated that the Task Force thought that this recommendation needed to be implemented right away, and had therefore given it a November 19th, 2014 deadline.
Professor Stabile stated that recommendation 3.5 was to "reconvene the Presidential Task Force on Alcohol and Other Drug Use." She stated that the Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support had learned that this task force had come up with a series of wonderful recommendations, and that the problem was so egregious that it needed to be a standing task force.
She stated that recommendations 3.6.1 and 3.6.2 were to "execute a memorandum of understanding with SASS” (Sexual Assault Support Services), and “execute a memorandum of understanding with Womenspace.” She stated that the Task Force believed these recommendations would help the University regularize its work with them, and help it take advantage of their expertise.
She stated that recommendation 3.6.3 was to "execute a memorandum of understanding with the Eugene Police Department." She stated that this was another item that the White House identified as a very important best practice.
Having read the recommendations, Professor Stabile thanked those present and stated that she looked forward to talking with people at the Senate meeting in two weeks.
Senate President Kyr thanked Professor Stabile and all of the members of the Task Force. He stated that it was very important that the Senate be held accountable for ensuring that there would be action on these matters.
Senate President Kyr stated that next item on the agenda would be a report from the Interim President and the Provost about strategic planning and the revision of the academic plan. He welcomed Interim President Scott Coltrane to speak.
Interim President Scott Coltrane thanked Senate President Kyr and stated that he and Provost Frances Bronet would give an abbreviated version of a presentation they had given previously to the new Board of Trustees. He first took a moment to express his appreciation for the work that the Task Force had done; he noted that there were substantial commitments being asked for, and asserted that it was a very important problem that the University needed to address.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he would cover the current status of the University, the path forward, and the plan to get there. He began by addressing the strengths of the University. He cited, as examples, the University’s highly engaged faculty and its achievements over the past year, some of which included: a record number of new research proposals submitted (a 16.3% increase), a record number (110 million dollars, up 13%) of sponsored research expenditures, and 59 faculty members or fellows elected to elite national academies. Interim President Coltrane added that the University was a member of the Association of American Universities (he noted that the University was one of just 34 public universities that belong to the 62-member organization). He stated that in that last year, the University had done benchmarking to examine how it compared to the other AAU universities, and that although it was not at the top of the pool, it was a very elite group to be among. He stated that the University was also part of the Association of Pacific Rim Universities and the Pac-12, and that it was planning—within the next few years—to marshal some of those resources to engage in the academic enterprise.
Continuing on the topic of strengths, he stated that Academic Analytics had ranked the Anthropology, Biology, Communication Disorders, Comparative Literature, Creative Writing, Education, Geography, Geological Sciences, Mathematics, Physics, and Psychology PhD programs in the top 20 percent of all PhD programs nationally. He also stated that Academic Analytics had ranked the Architecture: Sustainable Design, Conflict & Dispute Resolution, Counseling Psychology, Educational Leadership, Environmental Law, Interior Architecture, Legal Research & Writing, Sports Marketing, Sustainable Business Practices, School Psychology, and Special Education professional schools in the top 20 nationally (some of them top 10). He stated that it was incredible that an institution the size of UO, with the limited resources that it has, could have such highly ranked programs.
He stated that in terms of enrollment, one of the University’s strengths is its excellent enrollment demand. He stated that both graduate and undergraduate enrollment expanded from 2004 to 2014 (although not at the same rate, which he stated was an issue that had to be addressed). He stated that international undergraduate enrollment had probably increased proportionally more than any other area. He stated that non-resident undergraduate enrollment had also seen huge growth in response to state divestment. He added that tuition for out-of-state students was up in the high 20,000 dollar range, and that it would probably be 30,000 dollars per year to attend soon. He noted that this was over three times more than the University charged in-state students. He stated, therefore, that the University was effectively taking on out-of-state students to subsidize the in-state students. He stated that this was part of the pitch that was being made to the state legislature—that the University is taking on more out-of-state students to fund in-state students (whose numbers have not declined). He reiterated that the in-state tuition does not pay for a student’s education, and that it is closer to half than full cost. He stated that many neighboring states are doing the same thing. He added that the University of California (UCLA and Berkeley, especially) were now taking many more out-of-state students, which meant they were competing with the University of Oregon for the best and brightest Oregon students. He also noted that the University had increased its undergraduate enrollment at no cost to the quality of the entering class, and that the University was much more selective in its undergraduate population than it had been in the past.
He stated that the organizational strengths of the University included having a very talented faculty (although undersized compared to most AAUs). He stated that over the last decade, the University had generally hired very competitively—better than expected given its compensation levels and prestige. He stated that the University had a strong Foundation Board, which was very effective in terms of raising private money and utilizing those funds in ways that were more nimble than most big public research universities. He added that the University also had a skilled and experienced Senior Administrative Staff.
He stated that the University had strong support in terms of giving. He noted that the University had just launched the public phase of its campaign with a two billion dollar goal. He stated that in the last seven years, the University had received more than one hundred million dollars in giving per year, and that that number would have to more than double in order to raise two billion dollars over the next four or five years. He stated the University had seen 115 million dollars in giving during the 2014 fiscal year, and that it had a strong and growing alumni association. He stated that the University was dependent on private philanthropy more than ever before, and that it had an amazingly loyal alumni who were very generous to the campus.
He stated that the University had enjoyed athletic success, and that one primary large donor had helped catapult the University into a top tier athletic program. He stated that he thought the University could emulate this model on the academic side, as well.
Interim President Coltrane then spoke about the University’s financial situation. He stated that 80% of the budget was tied up in salaries and benefits. He stated that two million dollars per year had been set aside for the strategic investment fund run through the Vice President for Finance and Administration Office. He stated that this money would be used primarily for staffing enhancements and infrastructure improvements. He stated that the Cluster Hire Fund had been allotted one and a half million dollars, and that additional private funding was being sought. He added that this three and a half million dollars, which was going to be used for campus improvements, made up less than one percent of the budget and that more was needed to implement the new initiatives.
He stated that one of the challenges facing the University was facilities. He stated that facilities had not grown in the last three years despite a 4,000-student increase in enrollment. He stated that facilities needed to catch up by adding an additional 1,300 classroom seats (not counting Straub Hall, which he stated would come online soon). He stated that there was also a need for new faculty offices and research labs, and this was particularly challenging because laboratory space was getting more and more expensive (particularly in the sciences). He added that this included updating older labs for use by new faculty. He stated that the University had significant deferred maintenance; he added that the state used to be heavily involved in deferred maintenance, and that the University was involved in some proposals before the State Legislature to address the lack of funds. He stated that the University needed to expand IT infrastructure, and that it was necessary for a modern University to enhance its technology all the time. He added that the University budget had not carved out enough money to do this, and that this was problematic.
He stated that another challenge that faced the University was tuition dependence. He stated that the budget was very dependent on non-resident, undergraduate tuition, with almost 60% of the operating budget coming from less than half of the student population. He added that state divestment had left the University with just 11% of its operating budget coming from the state, noting that it been reduced by roughly 40% over the last decade. He stated that the University was dependent on market-sensitive, non-resident tuition, and that it faced competition from other Universities. He added that the University had benefited—to some extent—from California schools seeking out-of-state students, remaining selective, and implementing cuts; but that it left the University dependent on market forces that are beyond its control. He asserted that the University needed to ensure that it did not become overly dependent. He stated that the endowment had increased from 435 million dollars a few years ago to 600 million dollars, and that this was still only one third the average for AAU universities. He stated that the University had launched a campaign to quadruple its endowment in order to provide itself with more financial stability, generate revenue, and pay for facility improvements.
Interim President Coltrane drew attention to the University’s benchmarking report, which he stated was available on the Provost's website. He stated that the report indicated that the University spent roughly 30,000 dollars per student FTE, and that this number was nearly half of the average level for AAU universities. He added that the University still provided great services to its students, but that it needed to increase this number if it wanted to be competitive with its peers.
Staying on the topic of benchmarking relative to its peers, Interim President Coltrane stated that the University had: a smaller tenure-track faculty base, a high student-to-tenure-track-faculty ratio (which had gotten worse with the recent enrollment surge), lower research and development expenditures per faculty member (owing partially to the University’s lack of medical, engineering, and agriculture schools), lower PhD degrees per faculty, and a slightly shrinking graduate enrollment. He stated that the NRC and the National Academy ranked graduate programs based on the number of PhDs produced per year in areas that the country needs. He stated that the University had to do a better job of analyzing that and growing in this aspect. He added that membership in the AAU was dependent upon being a graduate institution, and that the University had let its graduate programs languish. He added that the University had made a structural change in order to have a new Dean of the Graduate School, and that the search was ongoing. He encouraged the members of the Senate to nominate colleagues—or themselves—for this very important position. He stated that the number of articles and awards per faculty had decreased slightly, but that in terms of awards, the University was actually in the middle of the pack for AAU universities. He stated that citations were lower (due partly, again, to the lack of a medical school and other high-citation fields).
He stated that in order to measure and evaluate the current status of the University, it was necessary to track: tenure-track faculty per student, the number of research and development expenditures, the number of PhDs produced, the number of PhD programs and professional school programs that are top-ranked programs, the number of awards that faculty receive, and the number of faculty publications and citations. He stated that the APLU (Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities), the National Research Council, the AAAS, Academic Analytics, and even the U.S. News and World Report all tracked these figures, and that it was important to emphasize moving these numbers in the right direction for the University.
He stated that some of the key metrics relating to student access and success included: entering-class high school GPA and SAT, diversity of the entering class (he added that the University was much more diverse than ten years ago), four-year and six-year graduation rates (he stated that the University was at 60% and needed to be closer to 80-90% for the six-year rate), Oregon student enrollment (adding that this was very important for state funding), Pell-eligible student enrollment, and Pell-eligible graduates.
He stated that in terms of setting goals, the University needed to focus on making itself a comprehensive institution focused on instructional and research excellence with: a more diverse and outstanding faculty (especially compared to the more diverse student body); a focus on student access, quality, and success; a powerful and unique student experience; and stronger professional schools (which he stated were already quite strong). He added that the University needed to be financially stable and responsible—especially considering that Oregon is a relatively poor state and would not likely bail the University out.
Interim President Coltrane then discussed the University's critical strategic initiatives. He stated that the University needed to attract the brightest and best in diversity. He stated that in order to do this, the University needed to: increase scholarships, grow the Honors College, expand PhD graduate fellowships (adding that a lack of first-year fellowships was driving students to other universities), and attract outstanding and diverse faculty. He stated that the University had launched the Cluster Hiring Initiative, which sought to hire 50 faculty members in addition to the 100 faculty members that would be hired through the normal hiring process. He stated that the University wanted to foster student access and success, and particularly to grow PathwayOregon, which had been enormously successful. He stated that the University needed to create some graduate assistance grants to help students who have run out of their loan eligibility. He added that the University had to expand its retention and completion initiatives in general, noting that there were plans to consolidate some of them in order to better serve students. He stated that the University needed to improve its physical infrastructure by: renovating residence halls; adding faculty offices, classrooms, and research labs; and investing in computational and IT infrastructure. He added that these needs were dire due to the 4,000-student increase the University had seen without expanding its infrastructure.
Interim President Coltrane then outlined some programs that had been presented at the recent Academic Leadership Retreat, which were aimed at tackling some of the obstacles faced by the University. He stated that these included launching the "Best and Brightest" scholarship program that would give 400 new scholarships at 20,000 dollars per year to the top undergraduates and would cost the University eight million dollars per year. He stated that the endowment equivalent for this would be 200 million dollars. He mentioned doubling the Presidential Scholarship Program, which would cost about 50 million dollars in endowment and would generate about two million dollars a year. He stated that there needed to be a similar increase in scholarship support for general recruiting, which would cost about ten million dollars per year.
He stated that the University could also expand the capacity of the Honors College from 800 to 1200 students, which would require a 75 million dollar endowment increase. He added that this could also be funded by current use, or by state money. He added that the University could expand its competitive Graduate fellowships, and stated that it would only cost four million dollars a year to do so.
He stated that attracting diverse faculty would cost 938 million in endowment equivalency. He added that this would hire 30 additional tenure-track faculty per year for the next five years, emphasizing that this would be a net increase over the normal hiring rate of 30 to 50 faculty per year. He stated that this would also require adding two GTFs for each new faculty member, and that it would be important to provide incentives in the form of startup packages to help new professors start their labs and write grants.
He stated that expanding PathwayOregon, launching retention and completion initiatives, and launching graduate assistance would cost roughly 100 million dollars each.
He stated that in terms of physical campus infrastructure, the Straub Classroom Project—which would be completed by March 2015—was made possible by a ten million dollar gift from Don and Willie Tykeson for a College and Careers Building. He stated that the new building would be the new home of the College of Arts and Sciences, and would probably allow the Career Center to move to a much more central campus location. He stated that the University had to get state authority for bonding to pay for 17 million dollars of it, but that the Career Center might be built where the Johnson Hall parking lot is. He stated that the University also had a plan for the first part of a new suite of Architecture and Allied Arts buildings, but that more fundraising was needed. He stated that the University was hoping that this would also get funded by the state, but that it was less likely to pass. He stated that Chapman Hall was halfway through its renovation, and that the University had just received a one million dollar gift that would be redirected toward that project along with the state and private money that had already been committed. He added that the Science Library would be completed in one year, and that both the Student Recreation Center and EMU renovations were going well.
He stated that in terms of improving the University's metrics, the most important thing was to first hire new tenure-track faculty. He added that state appropriations were a perfect use for this purpose, noting that the University was joining with 17 community college districts and eight public universities (three of them research universities) to ask for a combined 755 million dollars, recurrently, from the state. He stated that this would return higher education funding to pre-recession levels. He stated that the Legislature had done this in the last biennium for K-12, but noted that it would be a challenge, because the polls suggest that people think K-12 is more worthy of funding than higher education. He emphasized that the University needed the state to reinvest. He stated that in terms of the Capital Campaign, the University was asking individual donors to fund the Cluster hires. He added that it would cost 20-25 million dollars to hire three to five faculty and to provide enough endowment to do so on the University's ongoing budgeting.
He stated that Student Scholarships and Support would also look to state appropriations. He added the University had expressed to the HECC that investment in these continuation scholarships would help the University and raise completion rates. He stated that the University needed capital and start-up funds, and that there were more sources, including: State funded G bonds, University-issued revenue bonds, and housing revenue generated by charging students.
Interim President Coltrane stated that the University needed to continue benchmarking and monitoring metrics. He stated that the University had to continue to measure how it was doing, and to keep making the claim to its donors, the state legislature, and the students, that the University is making a difference for the quality of research and the quality of instruction in Oregon. He stated that he would be endorsing a new mission statement, adding that it had been posted on the Provost's website. He stated that it was going through another iteration, and asked those present to submit their comments by October 31st. He stated that this would be something they would do every couple of years. He stated—in terms of the developing campus facilities framework—that the University was, for the first time, conducting an integrated capital planning and visioning process. He added that the University had already done some good work on siting a few key projects that had yet to get underway. He stated that in terms of updating the academic plan, the University was looking at not just starting fresh, but asking how it was a strategic implementation plan. He stated that the feedback on the last academic plan was that it put forth a lot of lofty goals and values, but did not offer a lot of mapping for how to get there. He stated that the University needed to prioritize and focus on what programmatic investments it could make, set goals with metrics that measure its progress, and include campus constituencies in doing so. He added that the University was calling it a "campaign for competitive excellence."
He stated that, besides raising money and continuing its planning, the path forward for the University would be to tell its story. He stated that the branding initiatives at the campaign rollout included a 120-second commercial (funded entirely by private gifts) that sang the praises of Oregon and described how the academics, the creativity, the faculty, and the students were making the world a better place. He stated that the University was going to tell this story for the next three to five years. He added that the University would have to raise more private money and spend more money promoting itself like the other large universities did. He stated that the University had been very shy about this in the past, and that it needed to start singing its praises more. He reiterated that the University had to spend money (private philanthropy money) on selling itself to the rest of the world, adding that it would help with enrollment and attracting the best faculty. He stated that the University also had to stay focused on student access and success, on research, and academic excellence. He stated that the University was a beautiful place, and that it was important to keep the face-to-face culture that makes it strong and special.
Interim President Coltrane finished by stating that he would turn over the podium Frances Bronet, who would speak about the University's next step for strategic planning.
Acting Provost Frances Bronet started by thanking the Senate Task Force for its report. She also thanked Connie Ballmer for speaking and being part of a very significant shift in the University. She stated that she wanted those present to take some of the key goals that Interim President Coltrane had mentioned, populate them with the experts on campus, and start forming work groups. She stated that there were four key issues that she would go through, and added that there were going to be collective forums in which they would start to get information.
She stated that the first key goal was to “attract high quality, diverse students and promote student access, retention, and success." She stated that the University needed to collect representatives from existing groups on campus to begin to understand the direction that the University needed to go in. She stated that these groups of representatives could be anywhere from five to twelve (or more) members, and that the University would like for a faculty member and an administrator to be the co-chairs, and to become the steering committee for all eight groups. She stated that the second key goal was to “elevate research, scholarship and creative profile including expanding graduate education." She stated that the third was “attracting and retaining high quality, diverse faculty and staff," and that the fourth was to “enhance physical and IT infrastructure to ensure academic excellence." She stated that there would be staff for these key areas, and that they would be doing a lot of information gathering, planning and setting up meetings, and benchmarking. With that, she closed her remarks.
Interim President Coltrane briefly interjected that part of the effort was to obtain some metrics. He stated that the University needed to decide what it wanted to measure about how about their progress in these different areas. He stated that the University also needed to set targets and priorities for investing. He added that this process was already underway, but that he wanted more participation. He encouraged those present to go to the website, nominate people, and volunteer to serve on the committees. He stated that they would be meeting over the next year, and that they would be holding public forums.
Senate President Kyr asked the senators not to leave because there was still a motion to look at before adjournment. He thanked Connie Ballmer, Interim President Coltrane, and Acting Provost Bronet. He added that the general level of energy and excitement about the leadership team of Scott Coltrane and Frances Bronet was the highest he had ever seen for the entire administration. He stated that he thought that now was the time that the University could come together with all of its energy, ideas, and enthusiasm to support their vision and to make it happen.
4.3 Motion (Resolution): GTFF Bargaining; Regina Psaki, Professor (Romance Languages) & UO Senator
Senate President Kyr stated that next item on the agenda was a resolution regarding GTFF bargaining. Senator Regina Psaki (Romance Languages) moved the motion, which was then seconded by Senator John Ahlen (International Affairs). Senate President Kyr then read the motion and asked Senator Psaki to provide some background information. She read from a prepared statement:
Bargaining between the GTFF and the UO Administration has reached an impasse over issues of wage increases and benefits—specifically, limited paid leave. Several considerations make this an issue for the Senate. First, the GTFs are an essential part of instruction and research at the U of O. Without the enormous contribution of the GTFs, the UO cannot maintain the current scale, scope, and quality of teaching and research. Second, the idea that the faculty can protect our undergraduates' experience from the effects of a GTFF strike is unrealistic. Most of us already have a full-time appointment with no flex time for doing additional work, even if we were eager to do so. Most large-enrollment classes are only possible because of GTFs. In multi-section courses where GTFs are the lead instructors, faculty cannot step in and replace them in teaching or grading. To do so would not guarantee academic quality or continuity for undergraduate education. Third, the UO aims at expanding graduate education, even as the uncompetitive stipends in many fields makes it increasingly difficult to recruit the best students into our graduate programs. On June 2nd of this year, nine directors of graduate studies co-signed a letter to the Provost making this case clearly. The quality of campus intellectual life depends on strong support for our graduate students. And finally, the decline in tenure-track positions nationwide makes our GTFs' commitment to our University an even greater proof of dedication. We should reward that commitment and dedication—not erode it. Undergraduates and Graduates—they are all our students.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Psaki, opened the floor for comments, and recognized Senator Bill Harbaugh.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) moved that the motion be amended to replace “President Gottfredson” with “Interim President Coltrane.” He also asked Interim President Coltrane to comment on the motion.
Senate President Kyr stated that Senator Harbaugh's suggested change could be implemented without a vote, because it was in the “whereas” section. The change was implemented, and Senate President Kyr asked Interim President Coltrane if he would like to comment on the motion.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he could not say much about the bargaining except that the University had put forward what it thought was very generous offer, and that it was saddened that the offer was not accepted. He stated that he hoped that the GTFF would vote to avoid the strike. He reiterated that the University had been bargaining in good faith, and that it simply had not worked out as well as it had hoped.
Senate President Kyr thanked Interim President Coltrane for his comments and recognized Senator Reza Rejaie.
Senator Reza Rejaie (Computer and Information Science) stated that he agreed with every comment that was made by Senator Psaki, and that he wholeheartedly agreed with the sentiment, but that he was also not sure what the Senate would achieve by passing the motion. He stated that the Senate was not suggesting a specific way forward. He added that he was just trying to get clarification about what the motion was asking for.
Senate President Kyr stated that a resolution was just an expression of the will of the Senate. He invited Senator Psaki to offer further explanation.
Senator Rejaie asked if there was any indication that this was not already the will of the Senate.
Senator Psaki stated that she thought that the University ran largely on goodwill and morale, and that it was important for the GTFF members to know that the Senate took their situation very seriously. She stated that, as a faculty member who struggled for decades with uncompetitive stipends, she thought this issue touched a lot of the members of the Senate, regardless of their classification.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Psaki and recognized Jonathan Turbin.
Jonathan Turbin stated that he was a fourth year graduate student in the Anthropology department, and the Vice President of Organizing for the GTFF. He stated that he had a question for anyone who would like to answer it—particularly, Interim President Coltrane. He stated that it was a two-part question. First, he asked what the priorities were regarding graduate education. Second, he asked what the role was for graduate employees with regard to the goals for undergraduate education.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Michael Dreiling.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) stated that he would not address the question directly, but that he thought—after many, many years of teaching—that the amount of engagement that graduate student employees have with undergraduates was the vital pivot point for him delivering a pedagogy, substantive material, and a responsive learning environment. He reiterated that he could not do this without the graduate student employees. He added that he could not promote research with his graduate students in doctoral programs when they did not have the security that sick leave and family leave would provide. He emphasized that the classrooms that everyone was familiar with do not function without graduate student employees. He stated that he thought graduate students were a critical component to research programs, as well as undergraduate education. He stated that he hoped that a settlement could be reached, and that the Senate could support a positive statement with the resolution.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Dreiling and recognized Senator John Davidson.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) stated that he enjoyed the priorities set forth by President Coltrane. He noted that most of the excellence measures that had been discussed were focused on tenure-track faculty, and that most of them concerned the status of the University—articles published, awards received, etcetera. He stated that although there was a clear intention concerning the quality of undergraduate education, that most of the measures did not address this. He stated that the GTFF, to the extent that they are in charge of much of the basic education of this University, was directly involved with students learning languages, math, writing, and in assisting in almost all of the other courses around the University. He stated that by bolstering their situation and morale, the University would increase the time and the energy that GTFs had available to devote to undergraduate learning. He stated that he assumed that this would translate into benefits for the undergraduate students, and that it was one of the core ways that the University could achieve its goals.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Davidson and invited further comments. Seeing none, he called for a voice vote. The motion carried unanimously, and Senate President Kyr brought the meeting to a close. He thanked those present and stated that this meeting had been one of the Senate’s most productive. He stated that going forward, it would be important for the University to work together to implement the many worthy ideas and goals that had been put forward during the meeting.
Senate President Kyrcalled the October 22, 2014 meeting of the University Senate to a close at 5:00 p.m.
Minutes of the UO Senate Meeting for October 8, 2014
Present: Paul Dassonville, Miriam Deutsch, Jennifer Freyd, Weiyong He, Jun Li, Michael Price, Reza Rejaie, Randy Sullivan, John Cramer, John Davidson, Michael Dreiling, William Harbaugh, Bruce McGough, Jason Brown, Dianne Dugaw, Deborah Healey, Colin Koopman, Geraldine Poizat-Newvomb, Regina Psaki, Gordon Sayre, Ron Lovinger, Laura Leete, Richard Margerum, C. Lachman, Marylin Nippold, Deborah Olson, Debra Merskin, Victoria Mitchell, Edward Teague, Robin Clement, Jennifer Ellis, Alexandre Dossin, Robert Kyr, Monique Balbuena, David Espinoza, Lisa Raleigh, Debra Thurman, Samantha Cohen, Kate Klosno, Quinn Haaga, Andrew Lubash, Abel Cerros, John Ahlen, Theodora Ko Thompson, Jim Murray, Mike Strain, Margie Paris
Absent: Ken Prehoda, Donna Shaw
Excused: Jerry Rosiek, May Ann Hyatt
1. CALL TO ORDER
1.1 Introduction to University Senate
Senate President Robert Kyr (Music) called the October 8, 2014 meeting of the University of Oregon Senate to order at 3:00 p.m. in room 115 Lawrence Hall. He extended a warm welcome to those in attendance and expressed his hope that the new academic year would be the University’s most productive yet. He stated that the upcoming year would be a time of change and opportunity, and informed the Senate that the University was under the leadership of a new Interim President, Scott Coltrane, and Acting Provost, Frances Bronet.
Senate President Kyr stated that the primary focus for the Senate—both at the beginning of the year, and going forward—would be the Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support. He underscored the importance of steadfastly attending to the issue of sexual violence, and he encouraged the Senate to read Professor Jennifer Freyd’s research, which found that one in ten students at the University had, in some way, been sexually assaulted. He noted that the research was available on the Senate website and that Professor Freyd would also be speaking to the Senate at the October 22nd meeting.
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate's second priority would be to review the academic plan and to look at University priorities. He explained that a major part of the October 22nd meeting would be set aside in order to do this, and that during the current meeting, the Senate would focus on evaluating changes in the Student Conduct Code.
1.1.1 Orientation to Open Committee Meetings
Senate President Kyr reminded the Senate that beginning this year, there would be a new way of dealing with committee structure and meetings. He noted that a set of guidelines would be sent out to the Senate and all committee chairs in order to assure that the meetings be run in accordance with the Oregon Public Meetings Law. He indicated that there were some matters of confidentiality that were still being reviewed as part of the legislation, which he encouraged the Senators to read.
He stated that the final priority of the Senate would be the realignment of the OARs from the old OUS system to the new system with the Board of Trustees, HECC (Higher Education Coordinating Commission), OAIB (Oregon Education Investment Board), and the Chief Education Officer. He continued that the rewriting of these policies would be a multi-year process, and that it was his hope to get at least seven to ten of these policies through the Senate this year. He stated that the process of selecting which policies—out of more than 700—would be assessed was ongoing. He added that there was also a continuing effort to reform the system of university service, and that there would be six slates of legislation related to the revision of memberships and charges of committees. He encouraged the Senate to remain strong in its commitment to service in order to accomplish what needed to be done during the restructuring of the University. He took a moment to thank the members of the Senate for their service and also to welcome its new members.
1.1.2 October 22nd Senate Meeting
Senate President Kyr stated that the upcoming October 22nd meeting would begin with the recommendations of the Senate Task Force on Sexual Violence and Survivor Support, which he noted had been working extremely hard over the summer. Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would soon hear a brief report on the Task Force's progress from Co-Chair Randy Sullivan. He explained that the Task Force would be presenting their final recommendations at the beginning of the October 22nd meeting and that the community—including the Senate, Senate Executive Committee, Faculty Advisory Council, and other committees—would have a chance to respond over a two-week period. He added that there would be an open discussion during the November 5th meeting in which requests could be made for revisions, and that the final report would then be presented to the President for action. He continued that the November 5th meeting would also have roughly an hour and a half devoted to strategic planning and to revisiting the academic plan, and that the Interim President and Acting Provost would be giving a presentation on these topics.
1.1.3 Progress Report from UO Senate Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support
Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan (Chemistry) stated that he would be brief, as the Task Force would deliver its full report in the October 22nd meeting. He stated that progress had been made, and that he was personally amazed at the level of expertise on campus about this topic. He noted that a full list of the Task Force’s membership was available on the Senate website. He stated that the Task Force had been meeting weekly for the last couple of months, and that they had been split into working groups that look at different aspects of their charge. He noted that it had become apparent during the course of their work that some things needed to be addressed very quickly, and that they had sent a list of recommendations to Interim President Coltrane. He added that Interim President Coltrane had acted on them very quickly. He stated that the first item they had asked for was a discretionary fund of ten thousand dollars for survivor support, which the Interim President had increased to fifteen thousand dollars. He stated that the Task Force looked forward to working with Interim President Coltrane in the future and presenting him with the full set of recommendations. He closed by inviting those with questions to speak with him after the meeting, noting there was a lot of business to attend to.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Sullivan and the members of the Task Force for their tireless service on the process throughout the summer. He noted that the committee operated in an open and public manner, and encouraged those who might be interested to attend. He also commented that Jennifer Freyd’s recent climate survey—presented at one of the meetings—had received a lot of media coverage. He reiterated that during October 22nd meeting, the Senate would receive the recommendations of the Task Force and that there would be a chance to respond through various means, including online.
Senate President Kyr stated that the next item on the agenda was the approval of the minutes. He recognized Senator Bill Harbaugh for a request for revision.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) stated that he was not requesting a revision, but that he would like future minutes to use paragraphs to break up the text so that it would be easier to read.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Harbaugh for the suggestion and stated that the temporary employee in charge of the minutes would be notified of the suggestion. He requested further comments, and hearing none, the minutes were approved.
3. UNIVERSITY UPDATE
3.1 Remarks by Interim President Coltrane with discussion
Interim President Scott Coltrane thanked the Senate for inviting him to speak and stated that he wanted to give a brief update on what had been going on over the summer during their absence. He noted that this was the first time he had addressed the Senate in the role of Interim President, and that while he hadn’t expected it, he embraced the opportunity. He stated that with the support of Provost Frances Bronet, he believed the University was going to have great accomplishments this year.
He stated that in terms of returning students, the University was welcoming its most diverse incoming class ever, with 29% domestic ethnic minority students (excluding international students), 24% first-generation college students, and 37% Federal Pell-eligible Grant students. He stated that overall, enrollment was consistent with the previous year, with 56% residents, 33% domestic non-residents, and 11% international students (a slight increase). He noted that the University had seen also seen a slight increase in the number of transfer international students.
Interim President Coltrane shared that the University was pleased to be listed among the 50 top public universities in the U.S. News and World Report's "Best Colleges" listing, and that Forbes magazine had selected the University as Oregon’s top-ranked university and 65th nationally. He stated that he had some problems with some of the methodologies of those rankings, but that he was glad to see that the University was on an upward trajectory. He stated that one of the rankings he gave more weight to was the Academic Analytics’ Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index (FPSI), and noted that the University had thirteen doctoral programs ranked among the top 20% nationally by this measure. He stated that eight of the University’s professional school programs had been ranked among the top 20, as well. He reiterated that he was pleased with the upward trajectory of the University in terms of rankings, and that the Senate would be hearing more about benchmarking in the future.
He noted that University researchers had submitted a record number of proposals for research over the past year—a total of 1,070, which was a 16% increase from the previous year. He stated that in the 2014 fiscal year, the University had received 110 million dollars in grants for sponsored research, and that this was a 13% increase from the previous year. He observed that not all universities were on an upward trend, and stated that he was proud that the University of Oregon was doing so.
Interim President Coltrane shared his belief that the new year would usher in an incredible time of opportunity for the University. He stated that some of these opportunities included: reinvesting in academic programs and faculty to provide more access and support to Oregon students, advancing the University’s commitment to shared governance, raising the profile of the University among its peers in the state and the nation, and creating more financial stability. He stated that the new Board of Trustees provided an opportunity to pursue these goals, and that the University community had an obligation to make sure that the Board understood where the University wanted to go.
He stated that the University was moving forward with several critical projects, including a revision of the strategic plan, which he would address in collaboration with Frances Bronet during the October 22nd meeting. He stated that one of the most important changes that needed to be made to the strategic was setting objectives that were more concrete. He added that he would need the Senate’s help to set up faculty committees to oversee how the University focuses on setting those objectives.
He noted that a newly-revised mission statement had been created, and that it would be posted in the coming days. He encouraged the members of the Senate to look for it on the Provost’s website and provide feedback. He stated that the HECC wanted the mission statement to define the University’s strategic objectives, but that the University was arguing that a different part of the state apparatus should be focused on setting metrics for what the University wants to become.
He stated that the University was developing a new strategic framework for future development of physical infrastructure. He noted that this was something that the University had lacked, and that there was a lot of pent-up desire to do this. He stated that while a few key projects had been signed, the process would probably take 18 months. He encouraged the members of the Senate to come to the public meetings focused on these projects and the strategic framework vision plan. He continued that the Office of Equity and Inclusion was looking at developing a new Strategic Diversity Plan, and that he wanted to incorporate it into the strategic framework in order to ensure that diversity was commonplace in all University planning. He noted that new workshops were planned for search committees to make sure that the University actively recruits diverse faculty and staff.
Interim President Coltrane explained that the University was moving forward with Clusters of Excellence Hiring focusing on ten areas. He noted that the University was currently looking for external funding in order to fully fund all of the planned Clusters; he stated that his hope was to fund half of these. He added that he would speak at the next meeting about a plan to hire 150 net new tenure-track faculty.
He stated that the University was embarking on a process for a review of University policies. He elaborated that there was a whole set of Oregon Administrative Rules, management directives, state regulations, and Chancellor's Office regulations, that the University had inherited, and that there was a unique opportunity at this time to assess and organize them in the most functional possible way. He stated that he was in communication with colleagues at OHSU who went through a similar process some years ago, and that these individuals had advised him to make sure to that the revision was done comprehensively. He noted that there were a lot of policies that were outdated, and that he wanted the University—with the help of the Senate—to move forward on refreshing the policies that the University wants to keep.
He stated that the University was joining, for the first time ever, with the 17 community college districts and eight public research universities to ask the state legislature to reinvest in higher education. He noted that during the recession there was a state divestment in higher education, and that they would be asking for 695 million dollars recurrently in the state budget. He stated the University was also asking for 60 million dollars to carry forward the tuition buy-down, which he noted was a temporary action by the last legislative session. He stated that the state had made a similar reinvestment in K-12 education during the last biennium, and that he was hoping that they would match that for higher education. He stated that he would keep the Senate updated on their progress, and that he was hoping that the state legislature would replace the decrease in funding that the University had suffered over the last five or six years.
Interim President Coltrane informed the Senate that the University would be launching the public phase of its fundraising campaign. He stated that the campaign's goals were driven by the academic planning process, and that all the schools, colleges, research centers, and different offices on campus had been putting forward requests for proposals. He stated that the proposals were in large areas: funds for faculty, to hire new faculty, to enrich faculty research, to have scholarships for students, to enrich graduate education, to build new buildings, and to increase IT on campus. He stated that the University was seeking private donations for these proposals, noting that the University was so dependent upon private giving and tuition that it nearly always had to be raising money in this manner. He stated that the University had—for seven consecutive years—raised 100 million dollars from private fundraising, and that its goal was to double and triple that number in the next few years as the University entered this public phase.
He stated that the University had recently received a gift of 10 million dollars from Willie and Don Tykeson, which he explained would go toward a building that would be the new home for the College of Arts and Sciences, as well as to moving the Career Center into the center of campus. He stated that the University had also received an anonymous eight million dollar endowment gift to create scholarships for students who want to be schoolteachers. He continued that the University was trying to put more money into its endowment, noting that the University had a 400 million dollar endowment when it started benchmarking, and that its goal was to have at least a billion dollar endowment. He acknowledged that there was quite a ways to go to get there, but that he thought it was possible to do so through the upcoming campaign.
He closed by stating that the University remains committed to its model of shared governance, and that he hoped to continue to work cooperatively with the Senate President Kyr. He thanked the Senate for tackling difficult issues, noting that the Presidential Review Panel’s recommendations concerning sexual violence would dovetail nicely with the those of the Task Force. He stated that he was happy to work with the Senate on the proposed revisions to the Student Conduct Code, and that he looked forward to more recommendations. He stated that he had ten more minutes for questions, adding that he would normally stay for the entire meeting, but that that he had to attend a Connected Lane County consortium meeting.
Senator Regina Psaki (Romance Languages) asked if she heard correctly that 150 new tenure-track faculty would be added.
Interim President Coltrane confirmed that this was the plan if they were able to raise the money for it. He added that when the University increased its student population by about 4,000 students, it had hired predominantly adjuncts and career instructors. He stated that the ratio of research faculty was down as a result, and that he intended to add to their ranks if the University could raise the money. He added that Cluster hires would be roughly a third of the new hires, and that the University needed to grow in order to stay competitive.
An unidentified speaker asked if there was a plan to add more support staff in addition to the 150 faculty.
Interim President Coltrane stated that there was. He added that the University monitored the ratio of students, faculty, and staff, and that they would hire support staff in accordance with their additional faculty hires.
A second speaker (also unidentified) asked when students who aim to be schoolteachers would start receiving scholarships from the endowment.
Interim President Coltrane stated that he was unsure. He added that the timing of receiving funds from gifts depended on the particular details of each gift. In response to an inaudible question, Interim President Coltrane stated that the 37% Pell-eligible students was the highest ever as far as he knew. He added that there was a plan to increase Pathway Oregon, and that in addition to the money there would be advising for students that need high-touch advising and increased peer-mentoring. He added that the University would ask the State Legislature for funding for scholarships and the staff necessary to administer the scholarships and advise the students.
A third speaker (also unidentified) asked Interim President Coltrane if the University’s efforts to enhance accessibility for students were better served by adding tenure-track faculty as opposed to simply adding new instructional faculty.
Interim President Coltrane stated that from an efficiency perspective, they were at odds with each other, but that the University needed to do both. He elaborated that he thought the University could not afford to lose the “personal touch” if it was going to remain competitive in, for example, the California market. He stated that it was important for the University to set itself apart from other institutions that had huge lecture classes. He added that one of the reasons the University was seeking private donations was so that it could pursue both avenues. He stated that the University was incredibly understaffed compared to other institutions, but that it was remarkably efficient despite this. He asserted that it had the potential to become even more efficient, however, due to the goodwill of the faculty and staff. He added that it was a complicated problem. He thanked the Senate for inviting him to speak.
Senate President Kyr thanked Interim President Coltrane for his remarks and reiterated that he believed the University had entered a time of change and opportunity, as well as great hope and great promise. He stated that he thought that Interim President Coltrane had articulated this very well, and that the University could achieve its goals by working together. He stated that the Senate was a very important part of this effort and thanked the Senators again for their service. He added that he had failed to acknowledge the co-chairs of the Senate Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support earlier, and that he wished to thank Carol Stabile and Randy Sullivan for their efforts.
4. NEW BUSINESS
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would move on to a joyous part of the agenda in which they would acknowledge three of their colleagues who had given much to the University: David Espinoza, Theodora Ko Thompson, and Susan Gary.
4.1 UO Senate Leadership and Service Award for Officers of Administration: David Espinoza, Assistant Director/Testing Center Director
Senate President Kyr stated that they would begin with David Espinoza, the Assistant Director of the Testing Center, who would be receiving the UO Senate Leadership and Service Award for Officers of Administration. He stated that David began his career at the University in 1986 and that he had been with the Counseling and Testing Center since 1989. He continued that David had served as a member of the OA Council from 2008 to 2012, that he was currently a member of the OAC’s Compensation Subcommittee, and that he had co-authored the 2012 OA Compensation Report. He stated that recently, as part of the Senate’s Ten-Year Review of Committees, David had served as the chair of the work group that evaluated and revised the charge and membership profile of the Officers of Administration Council. He added that David was an active member of the National College Testing Association, that he had served as a member of its governing board from 2006 to 2012, and that he had served as its president from 2010 to 2012. He stated that David had just been elected to the University Senate as one of three Officer of Administration Representatives, and that he was also currently serving on the Senate Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support. He asked the Senate to acknowledge David, who he then invited to the podium to receive his award and make some remarks.
Senator David Espinoza (Counseling & Testing Center) stated that it was nice to be recognized and appreciated. He stated that he wanted to thank those who saw fit to nominate him for the award, and he promised to participate in the life of the University, both as a community member and as an Officer of Administration. He also thanked the University Senate for creating an award that specifically acknowledged an Officer of Administration, and stated that he was quite humble to be part of the group of OAs who had received it. He stated that he was not comfortable being in the limelight, and that in his perspective, no one does anything by themselves. He added that we exist within social and work contexts that bring us into constant contact and collaboration with a host of others, and that anything he might have done to lead to this award had been the result of working with others. He stated that he wanted to take the opportunity to acknowledge some of his deserving colleagues: the Director of the Counseling and Testing Center, Shelly Kerr, and Testing Center staff members, Lisa Montgomery and Jenny Rouch. He stated that his service on the OA Council from 2008 to 2012 had been a very interesting, challenging, and rewarding experience. He stated that while working to identify and advance critical issues, the OA Council had sought to provide the University with senior leadership, and the best feedback and advice possible. He stated that he would like to thank his colleagues from the OA Council: Shelley Elliott, Rachele Raia, Thea McIntosh, and Tenaya Meaux, adding that he had learned a lot from these OA colleagues. Finally, he stated that he would like to thank his closest collaborators from his time on the OA Council—Miriam Bolton, Linda Leon, and Lisa Raleigh—for their friendship, support, advice, and hard work. Senate President Kyr congratulated David and thanked him for his gracious remarks and acknowledgement of his colleagues.
4.2 UO Senate Classified Staff Leadership Award: Theodora Ko Thompson, Admissions Specialist (Office of Admissions)
Senate President Kyr invited the next award recipient, Admissions Evaluator Theodora Ko Thompson, to the podium to accept her award for the UO Senate Classified Staff Leadership.
Senator Theodora Ko Thompson (Admissions) thanked Senate President Kyr, the members of the University Senate, and guests in attendance. She stated that she was honored and humbled to accept the award, which she felt embodied the principles within the University’s mission statement. She continued that it was a privilege to serve and find inspiration within the body of the Senate, and to be working—through shared governance—on policies that matter to the campus community. She thanked her colleagues for inspiring her, supporting her endeavors, and making her efforts meaningful. She stated that this award belonged to all classified employees—past and present—who had stepped forward to serve in leadership roles in the Senate, on the Classified Staff Training and Development Advisory Committee (CSTDAC), and in committees. She also thanked everyone who continued to support classified employees and endeavored to bring about a campus climate of respect and inclusiveness.
She stated that when she joined the University of Oregon in 1994, she brought with her a unique set of knowledge, professional work, and travel experiences. She stated that she was a Nonya, a Straits-born Chinese, who was proud of her Peranakan heritage—a unique blended heritage rich in Chinese tradition with elements of the Malay culture of the immigrant Chinese who settled in the Straits Settlements of Malacca, Penang and Singapore. She added that she was raised multilingual, speaking English, Malay, and Hokkien, her mother tongue; she noted that she was also relatively comfortable speaking French, and knew enough German and Swedish to get around.
She stated that in Singapore education is highly valued, and that she was heartened when she joined the Office of Admissions in 1995 and received assurances from the Head of the Department, as well as her supervisor, that the University encouraged the personal and professional development of its staff.
She stated that the Department Head’s words had inspired her to pursue her educational goals and made meaningful her worth as a valued employee.
She stated that she was a non-traditional student returning to school twenty years following her secondary education in Singapore—a new alien to the American workplace, and to the American educational environment. She stated that she was before the Senate today largely because of the education she had received at the University. She added that she was a proud Duck, with an undergraduate degree in Advertising from the School of Journalism and Communication and a master’s degree in Educational Leadership on Policy, Management, and Organization from the College of Education. She stated that every class impacted her consciousness, and that reviewing the Supreme Court decisions on Constitutional issues in class was the kindling that ignited her curiosity to understand the democratic processes of an informed citizenry. She stated that she had participated in the National Student Advertising Competition, and that her essay, “Paradox Between Worlds,” an autobiographical excerpt of the immigrant identity, was one of seven essays selected for publication in a collection of undergraduate essays in courses in comparative literature. She continued that in March 2012, it had made a difference to have the support of managers who understood the significance of her educational journey when she sought leave to participate in the 47th anniversary march of the Selma to Montgomery Civil Rights route in Alabama for the right to vote.
She asked to whom the University Mission Statement—“Mind moves matter,” or “Minds move mountains,”—spoke, and whether it was “for lifelong learning that leads to productive careers and to the enduring joy of inquiry.” She stated that the Mission Statement should speak of a campus climate and culture that speaks true for classified employees in their learning environment. She stated that classified employees who desire to serve and take on leadership roles, who aspire to learn, receive training, and earn a degree, should not be denied these opportunities. She stated that for too many classified employees, access to training, classes, and service on committees remained elusive. She stated that for too many classified employees, the abusive and hostile workplace experience was real. She added that in many cases, inflexible managers or workplace environments prompted employees to transfer to another department, or leave the university entirely.
She stated that universities aspire to be recognized as global campuses. She stated that as uncomfortable as some conversations on race, ethnicity, religion, culture, gender or class are, that silence is not always positive. She added that this was especially the case given that we have the capacity, ability, and opportunity to learn at a University whose business is to educate, inspire, and nurture the enduring joy of inquiry. She continued that people are not perfect beings and cannot easily program themselves to avoid erring with their actions; but she asked how people are to learn to respect, understand, and connect with each other. She related that in 1999, CSTDAC produced a Comprehensive Activities Report that included the recommendation that UO courses from all disciplines be considered for classified employees’ release time. She asked the Senate to imagine the kind of rich campus the University would have today if CSTDAC’s recommendation had been adopted. She asked the Senate to imagine what kind of narrative the campus workplace would have if “See a Bully, Stop A Bully, Make A Difference” did not stop at the doorsteps of higher education. She asked the Senate to imagine what kind of leadership and society would exist if each and every one of us committed to endeavor to step out of our comfort zone and learn about another person’s history, traditions, and culture. Finally, she asked the Senate to imagine the heightened meaning that a Global Campus University Day would have with activities across campus that celebrated all that is rich in diversity amongst us in our University community.
She stated that her personal motto, “Go—go yonder, further, farther,” reminded her to be bold, to step beyond what she do not know, and to continue to seek new knowledge. She elaborated that “further” told her to keep an open mind, listen, learn, understand deeper, and further the knowledge beyond that which she already has or knows. She stated that ”farther” spoke to the journey of learning and going the distance to understand and appreciate that which is beyond one’s immediate world and comfort zone. She asserted that everyone could be active participants in inclusive learning, leadership, and scholarship by respecting and connecting with each other and sharing learning experiences. She added that we should challenge ourselves to learn from the diversity of rich knowledge that we have amongst us in our learning environment, and to be a respectful and inclusive community of learners. She asked those present to see themselves transform into universally-educated people and agents of change.
She closed by thanking her parents and family, and her partner, Ron, for his love and support in all that she does.
4.3 Wayne Westling Award: Susan Gary, Orlando J. and Marian H. Hollis Professor (Law)
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Ko Thompson for her beautiful and inspiring remarks and stated that the next award recipient was Susan Gary, the Orlando J. and Marian H. Hollis Professor at the Law School. Senate President Kyr noted that Professor Gary, who would be receiving the Wayne Westling Award, was on leave and was therefore unable to attend the meeting. However, he stated that she had prepared remarks and asked him to read them.
Senate President Kyr first provided some background on Professor Gary. He stated that she was the Orlando J. and Marian H. Hollis Professor at the Law School, and that she taught non-profit organizations, trust and estate planning, and works with the non-profit clinic. He stated that her scholarship focus is on the regulation of charities, investment decision-making by charities, the definition of "family" in connection with inheritance, and the use of mediation in estate planning. He added that Professor Gary had been active in the leadership of two national organizations of estate planning lawyers, and that she had also been involved in law reform at the state and national level. He continued that she was a reporter for the Uniform Prudent Management of Institutional Funds Act, which has been adopted by 49 states, as well as an Oregon Law Commissioner and a reporter for the Probate Modernization Work Group. He stated that at the University, Professor Gary co-chaired the Executive Diversity Work Group that Drafted the University's Diversity Plan, served on the University Governance Committee that drafted the current University Constitution, and had served on the Senate and the Senate Executive Committee, as well as the Women's and Gender Studies Committee, and a number of other University committees. He noted that she was currently serving on the University-wide Diversity Committee, and that she also served as a trustee on the UO Institutional Board. He stated that Susan regretted not being present, but that she sent her best to all. He then read Professor Gary’s prepared comments, which have been reproduced in their entirety below:
Of the awards the University bestows, this is a special one for me, because Wayne Westling was a dear colleague and friend. My faculty neighbor, Wayne was the embodiment of university service and community service; and it is so fitting that we have this award in his memory. I am honored beyond words to be this year's recipient. This university has been my professional home for more than 20 years, and I appreciate the many opportunities the University has given me. This is an amazing place with so much good work going on around us every day. I have benefitted from my involvement with university service, learning from each project, and meeting wonderful members of our community. My work on the Diversity Plan, in particular, was an incredible learning experience for me—one that continues to influence me, and has influenced my scholarly work. I love the University, because it is a place of learning; and all of us who work here get to continue learning throughout our professional lives. Thank you so much for this recognition. There are many, many others at our university who deserve this award, and I am honored to have received it.
Senate President Kyr thanked all of the awardees for their service and proceeded with the rest of the meeting.
Senate President Kyr stated that next on the agenda was the Change of Membership for Committee on Courses motion. He asked that the motion be put before the Senate by its sponsor, Professor of Anthropology and Chair of Committee on Courses, Francis White.
Professor Francis White (Anthropology) requested that the Senate consider the motion.
Senate President Kyr asked for a second, which was received from an unidentified Senator. He then read the motion and invited Francis to provide background.
Professor White introduced herself as the Chair of the Committee on Courses. She stated that the committee had been chaired, for a long time, by Paul Engelking; and that while she could never fill his shoes, she was happy to fill the role. She stated that after he stepped down, there was no continuity, and that the committee felt that it was very important to have that continuity—as well as a convener. She stated that the motion was asking for the appointment of a convener onto the committee in order to help ease the transition.
Senate President Kyr thanked Professor White and opened the floor for comments. Hearing none, he called for a voice vote and the motion passed unanimously.
Senate President Kyr noted that the next motion to be considered by the Senate had been divided by Professor John Bonine into nine parts in order to keep the proceedings orderly. He asked that Professor Bonine put the motion before the Senate, which he did. The motion was seconded, and he proceeded to read the first part of it. He then asked Professor Bonine to explain the motion, stating that he would open the floor for debate afterward.
Professor John Bonine (Law) began by relating some of the history involved in bringing this legislation to the Senate. He stated that in April 2011, the Office of Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education wrote a letter called the Dear Colleague Letter, which recommended changes for campuses in order to be in compliance with Title IX. He stated that the issue of sexual assault had come to the fore as part of Title IX non-discrimination issues. He added that in December 2013, a consultant hired by the Office of Student Life on campus completed a report called the Groves Report, which also had several recommendations. He stated that during the following months, some work regarding these recommendations was done in the Student Conduct Committee. He continued that in May, the campus was shocked by the revelation of an alleged rape of a young woman newly arrived on campus. He stated that unlike most sexual assault cases, this one became public and forced the University community to pay attention and do something about it. He stated that in May, Professor Caroline Forrell—who is one of the nation’s leading experts on feminism—Student Conduct and Community Affairs Director, Sandy Weintraub, and himself had started working on various proposals to amend the Student Conduct Code. He stated that on May 14th, he and Caroline posted a Notice of Motion, which was placed on the Senate website.
He stated that on May 28th, the Senate adopted two important changes to the Student Conduct Code. He explained that the first change extended the jurisdiction off campus, which he argued was a much more comprehensive and reasonable way of doing things. He stated that the second change was that the preponderance of the evidence standard be used for trying incidents. He added that it was important to understand that the Student Conduct Code is not a criminal process, and therefore does not require the higher standard of evidence used when deciding criminal convictions.
He continued that on July 1st, a new Board of Trustees took office for the University of Oregon and quickly adopted a statement of authority and delegation and non-delegation of authority. He stated that according to State Law, "The President and professors constitute the faculty, and as such, have the immediate government and discipline of the University, except as otherwise provided by action of the governing board." He surmised that the governing board had—without explanation—decided that the Student Conduct Code would be their exclusive responsibility, and not the responsibility of the faculty and the President. He stated that this action taken by the Board of Trustees was an assault on shared governance, and that it was necessary for the Senate to assert their role as advisors.
He stated that during August and September, there was internal work to change the Student Conduct Code that did not involve the public, or even those who had been working on it previously. He stated that the internal work done by the current administration was then sent to the Board of Trustees, and that with essentially no notice or public participation, they passed the changes. He added that while he thought the changes were good ones, the process left much to be desired. He continued that the Senate had to make sure to continue its participation and reclaim its power and authority in this matter.
He stated that on September 30th, Professor Jennifer Freyd released the first results from her path-breaking survey, which indicated that 19% of University of Oregon students had been victims of sexual assault or attempted sexual assault. He added that the number would be closer to 21% for seniors and above. He stated that this trend would continue if the Senate did not take action on the Student Conduct Code.
Professor Bonine reminded the Senate that the motion had been divided into nine parts and proceeded to introduce the first of these. He stated that the motion added the term “explicit” in three places in order to be consistent with other provisions of the code, as well as to reinforce the importance that consent to sexual activity must be explicit. He asked for a second, which was received from an unidentified senator.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for discussion and recognized Senator Lisa Raleigh.
Senator Lisa Raleigh (College of Arts & Sciences) asked if the proposed changes had been added just prior to the Senate meeting.
Senate President Kyrstated that the only difference was its division into parts.
Senator Raleigh asked for confirmation that the motion itself was not different.
Professor Bonine stated that there was one difference—in Motion IX—but that all the provisions had been there since May 14th.
Senator Raleighstated that she was just checking, because the Senate had passed legislation during previous spring which stated that after a motion is submitted, any additional changes must be made available to the Senate in a redlined version prior to the meeting.
Senate President Kyr stated that he was unaware that Motion IX had been changed, and that if Senator Raleigh strongly objected, Motion IX could be put into another motion.
Senator Raleigh stated that she did not object, and that she just wanted to make sure that the Senate was going to follow this process moving forward. She asked Professor Bonine if the motion was using the revised Student Conduct Code from the Dean of Student’s website as a point of departure.
Professor Bonine stated that the changes that were made by the Board in September were already in the document in bold, black text (as opposed to red or orange proposals and deletions, respectively). He stated that he had bolded the text so that the Senators would be aware of the changes that were made to the document without Senate participation. He stated that sections of the document in black strikeout were temporary changes that may or may not become permanent, and that he had removed these from the redlined version to avoid confusion.
Senate President Kyr stated, for clarification, that the Student Conduct Code had been altered by the Board and that Professor Bonine was simply providing a map to the evolution of the document. He acknowledged Professor Bonine’s work in this matter and asked for comments and questions on the motion. He recognized David Espinoza.
Senator David Espinoza (Counseling & Testing Center) stated that he was under the impression that there was a jurisdictional issue at play in the motion. He asked if this was true, and stated that if it was, he wanted to know how the consideration of these motions was dealing with that issue.
Professor Bonine explained that the UO Constitution states that the faculty has jurisdiction, and that the faculty had delegated this power to the Senate, which was composed of officers of administration, classified staff, and students, in addition to faculty. He stated that the usual procedure was for legislation to be acted on by the Senate, approved by the President, and then received by the Board. He added that the Board was also able to act, as it did in September, without receiving any input from the Senate. He noted that the legislation from the University Senate was always a preliminary step that had to be approved by some higher body—be it the Secretary of State’s Office, or the Board of Trustees.
Senate President Kyr added that this was part of what he had been referring to as “the realignment.” He invited additional questions and comments. Seeing none, he called for a voice vote, which passed unanimously.
Senate President Kyr invited Professor Bonine to introduce the motion.
Professor Bonine stated that the motion proposed to add a new subsection, (d) which would read: “a single episode of behavior that meets (a), (b), or (c) can be sufficient for finding of sexual misconduct.” He explained that (a), (b), and (c) in this instance stood for unwanted penetration, non-consensual personal contact, and non-consensual sexual advances. He pointed out that sections of text highlighted in green indicated that the proposed changes were a collaborative effort between the Senate and Presidential Administration. He stated that it had always been the practice of the Office of Student Conduct to regard a single episode as being sufficient for a finding of sexual misconduct, but that it had never been formalized.
Senator Jane Cramer (Political Science) seconded the motion.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for debate. Hearing none, he called for a voice vote, which passed unanimously.
Professor Bonine stated that it had always been the case that if a student plagiarized, or otherwise fraudulently obtained a degree or acted dishonorably, that disciplinary action could be taken against the student after graduation—up to, and including, degree revocation. He stated that it should be no different for sexual misconduct, given that some victims of sexual assault may not want to—or be able to—talk about an incident until years after it occurred. He stated that the motion simply removed the six-month statute of limitations from the Student Conduct Code.
Senator Debra Merskin (School of Journalism and Communication)seconded the motion.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for debate and recognized Senator John Davidson.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) stated that he was sympathetic to the concerns involving delayed reporting. He stated that while it made sense to extend the statute of limitations in cases of sexual misconduct, he had concerns about potential misuse of the process. He provided an example in which 20 to 30 years following graduation, an individual’s political adversary hears a rumor and decides to start the process in which the preponderance of the evidence standard would be used, and there would likely be no witnesses. He asserted that such misuse could have various career implications for the accused person, and asked if there were any sorts of structural barriers in place to prevent this kind of misuse.
Professor Bonine stated that there were no separate structural provisions in the motion, but that there were the normal structural provisions in law and society, and particularly in procedures. He stated that any person has the right to sue the University to overturn a sanction, and that it would be decided by a court. He added that the standard of evidence used in court for civil cases would still be a preponderance of the evidence.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dianne Dugaw.
Senator Dianne Dugaw (English) stated that she could see how an accusation of plagiarism in academic work could result in questioning a person’s degree, because it directly related to their study at the University. She continued that she did not see how an accusation of sexual misconduct was related to the degree itself as representing the body of work that a person did. She added that she was a little troubled by the prospect of revoking a degree on moral grounds. She stated that the logic seemed messy to her.
Senate President Kyrrecognized Sandy Weintraub.
Sandy Weintraub (Director, Student Conduct and Community Standards) stated that while his name was recorded in the proposed legislation agreeing with the change, he was surprised by the language of "degree revocation." He stated that he could not think of a behavioral incident for which a degree would be revoked, and stated that his reading of sanctioning was that a degree could only be revoked for an academic misconduct matter. He stated, therefore, that he did not believe a degree revocation would be possible under the current code.
Professor Bonine asked if Senator Dugaw would object to simply removing degree revocation as a possible consequence.
Senator Dugaw stated that she was uncomfortable with the possibility of a degree being revoked based on amoral behavior. She added that she did not like the possibility of a moral witch hunt in a culture that is very puritanical. She stated that she would be much happier to have the revocation of the degree taken out of the motion.
Professor Bonine stated that the negative notation on the transcript would remain. He stated that a person’s education would be affected by a sexual assault and that there is no way—other than a degree revocation—to sanction an individual who has already graduated. He stated that he thought at least having the possibility of revoking a degree was not radical, and that he believed other universities lift the statute of limitations for cases of sexual misconduct. He added that the Senate could move to table the motion in order to figure out what it wanted to do with it, vote against it, or treat it as a temporary action.
Senate President Kyr stated that the motion could also be amended. He recognized Bruce McAllister.
Bruce McAllister (University Ombudsperson) stated that he had previously been responsible for administering large, investigative offices that were tasked with conducting prompt and thorough investigations of Title VII and Title IX actions. He stated that from his perspective, he would urge the Senate to consider that the statute of limitations issue does not have to be a binary "no statute of limitations," or "very short statute of limitations." He stated that Professor Bonine’s suggestion that an individual could always sue the University if they didn’t like the outcome of a sanction would drive things toward a formal, complicated, and expensive process. He stated that the purpose of the statute of limitations was to ensure that memories were still around, witnesses were still available, and that relevant information could be collected. He continued that if the University was going to create an expectation that it would be able to resolve sexual misconduct cases without a statute of limitations, it would be predisposed to hamstringing itself. He suggested that the Senate consider something less than an indefinite statute.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Michael Dreiling.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) stated that he wanted to speak on two matters. He stated that the addition of the words “sexual misconduct” did nothing to implicate the kind of penalty that would result as punishment. He added that it would simply extend the statute of limitations indefinitely. He stated that he didn’t see the connection between the consequences of a finding that had been summarized in the blue print in the actual language of the policy. He stated that Sandy’s comment clarified that there was nothing in the code that suggested a disciplinary process associated with sexual misconduct that would involve a revocation of the degree, and that he was reassured by that. He stated that he wished the issue of extending the statute of limitations was stated more plainly, and in such a way that it was detached from the other concerns that had been raised. He added that he didn’t have a specific motion to amend at this time.
Senate President Kyr notified the Senate that someone had approached the Chair with an amendment; he then recognized Samantha Cohen.
Samantha Cohen (Student Senator) stated that she was speaking in favor of removing the statute of limitations. She also made the argument that sexual misconduct does have some academic impact. She asked the Senate to consider survivors who are unable to function after a term following a sexual assault. She stated that this legislation was not about protecting the perpetrator—that it was about protecting the survivor.
Senate President Kyr thanked Samantha for her comments and asked Senate Vice President Randy Sullivan if he would like him to read the amendment. The amendment sought to replace "Allegations of academic dishonesty, or fraudulently obtaining a degree, may be considered at any time, regardless of when the alleged misconduct occurred" with, "Allegations of sexual assault may be considered if the alleged perpetrator is still enrolled at the University."
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor Bonine asked the Parliamentarian if, with the consent of the seconder, he could withdraw or table the motion. He further requested that an informal committee be created in order to come up with a way to allay concerns while still preserving the important function of survivor support. He stated that he requested this in the interest of time.
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate could postpone to a time indefinite or to a time certain. He added that the next meeting during which the Senate would be able to address these motions would be November 5th, because the October 22nd meeting would deal with the presentation of the Senate Task Force recommendations. Professor Bonine requested that the discussion of the motion be postponed to a time definite.
Andrew Lubash (Student Senator) seconded it.
Senate President Kyr recognized Sandy Weintraub.
Mr. Weintraub stated that he wanted to point out that the committee Professor Bonine had requested already existed in the Student Conduct Committee, of which he was the convener. He stated that the committee was still waiting for appointments from the President, but that as soon as those were received, a public meeting would be scheduled in which anyone was welcome to talk about any aspect of the Student Conduct Code. He added that when the dates for the public meetings were set, they would be posted on the Senate webpage.
Professor Bonine stated that he intended to participate in the open Student Conduct Committee meetings, but that he did not intend to bring this matter to the committee. He stated that the reason for this was that there already existed a group of people who were motivated on this issue on different sides, and he simply wanted to form a small group to perform the drafting. He added that especially since some appointments hadn’t yet been made to the Student Conduct Committee, it was important to get some people to work on the motion and bring something back by the next meeting.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Michael Dreiling.
Senator Dreiling stated that he had not heard anything yet that amounted to a paramount objection to the motion. He continued that he had only heard questions regarding the implications and requests for clarification. He stated that he believed that removing the statute of limitations made great sense given that there had been reassurance offered about the implications. He stated that he thought that the motion was ready to vote on.
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate had to vote on the motion because it had been seconded. He thanked Senator Dreiling, and recognized Professor Lisa Freinkel.
Professor Lisa Freinkel (Comparative Literature) stated that she wanted to register her extreme discomfort with obviating the process of the Student Conduct Committee in reviewing, discussing, and calling together the conversations about changes to the Code.
Senate President Kyr suggested that those people who had met with Professor Bonine could come to a committee meeting in order to unify their efforts. He noted that this would require that the Student Conduct Committee convene prior to November 5th. He recognized Senator Robin Clement.
Senator Robin Clement (Accounting) stated that she was concerned that the Senate was only looking at one type of very severe conduct. She noted that there were other types of conducts (e.g., being beaten and not remembering who the assailants were until months afterward) that the University might also not want to have a statute of limitations on.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Clement for her comment and stated that the maker of the motion had asked that the Senate only address the motion itself. Senate President Kyr requested further comments. Seeing none, he called a voice vote. The vote was not unanimous, so a show of hands was taken and the motion passed with nine Senators opposed. Senate President Kyr then noted that it was time to adjourn, and invited Professor Bonine to make a closing comment.
Professor Bonine requested that the meeting be continued for an additional fifteen minutes in an effort to push through an additional two to three motions.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for discussion on continuing for fifteen minutes. Seeing none, he called a voice vote which was not unanimous. A show of hands was taken and the motion carried with one Senator opposed. Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would move on to Motion IV.
Professor Bonine stated that Motion IV was to replace the definition of sexual misconduct in the section that begins: “the following conduct violates community standards…" because sexual misconduct had already been defined elsewhere. He continued that it used to be that punishment for sexual misconduct could only be pursued if the sexual conduct materially interfered with another person’s academic performance or participation in an activity, or was committed on University premises, or demonstrated a reasonable threat to the health and safety of a member of the University. He stated that these extra requirements were ridiculous and unnecessary, and he reasoned that having the cross reference "sexual misconduct as defined" was all that was required. He then requested that the motion be seconded.
Senate President Kyr stated that Senator Regina Psaki had seconded the motion, and opened the floor for debate. He recognized Senator Davidson.
Senator Davidson stated that he had missed the initial discussion on the definition of sexual misconduct, but that he understood that a hypothetical situation of someone going home to Arizona and ill-advisedly groping someone in a bar would fall within the definition. He stated that he wanted to make sure if that was the case.
Senate President Kyr requested that Professor Bonine answer Senator Davidson’s question.
Professor Bonine stated that the motion did not affect jurisdiction. He added that jurisdiction was addressed in a different section that had already been acted on in May.
Senate President Kyr thanked Professor Bonine and requested further comments. Seeing none, he called for a voice vote. The vote carried unanimously, and the Senate moved onto Motion V.
Professor Bonine explained that the motion would replace the term “the community” with “anyone, including sexual assault.” He explained that this would make it clear that the University could punish students for violations against anyone—not just members of the University community itself. He also added that it was his belief that this would send a message to people that the University is serious about this issue, and that it’s irrelevant whether or not the victim is a student, or whether or not the violation took place on campus. Professor Bonine also explained that the motion added language stating that an educational activity would not be the only sanction applied in “cases of unwanted penetration or non-consensual physical contact,” and that it should be used in conjunction with more serious sanctions. He added that this was already standard practice, but that this language would formalize it.
Senate President Kyr stated that motion had been seconded by Michael Dreiling and opened the floor for debate. He recognized Senator Colin Koopman.
Senator Colin Koopman (Philosophy) asked if the word “including,” as it appeared in the revision “anyone, including sexual assault” was meant to apply to violations such as academic dishonesty and violations including sexual assault. He stated that he thought that the sentence was grammatically misleading and suggested that a comma be added after “assault.” He also suggested that “violations” could be added after assault as well.
Professor Bonine agreed that Professor Koopman was correct about the comma. He added that inserting “violations” was unnecessary because the comma was enough to give the sentence the intended meaning.
Senate President Kyr requested further questions and recognized Senator Michael Price.
Senator Michael Price (Mathematics) stated that he thought it would be clearer if the sentence read “academic dishonesty and violations, including sexual assault, affecting the health and safety of anyone are deemed the most severe.” He also asked if sexual assault or sexual misconduct was defined here.
Senate President Kyr asked Professor Bonine if sexual assault was defined, or if only sexual misconduct was defined. He recognized Sandy Weintraub.
Mr. Weintraub pointed out that the paragraph being discussed was more of a philosophical statement than anything else. He added that “sexual assault” was actually not a term that appeared anywhere else in the code as far as he knew, and that “sexual misconduct” was the actual violation.
Professor Bonine stated that the intention of using “sexual assault” was to include penetration, attempted penetration, and groping, but not sexual harassment.
Mr. Weintraub stated that the definition of “sexual misconduct” in the Code covered all forms of sexual misconduct from sexual assault to verbal harassment. He clarified that he understood that the term “sexual assault” had been used to make it clear that the statement referred to physical forms to sexual misconduct as opposed to verbal ones.
Professor Bonine suggested that the sentence could be changed to read: “including sexual misconduct, but not harassment.” He requested a second.
Senate President Kyr asked if someone would like to propose the amendment.
Senator Deborah Healey (American English Institute) proposed the amendment.
Senate President Kyr invited a second, which was offered by Senator Monique Balbuena. He then requested discussion and recognized Senator Balbuena.
Senator Monique Balbuena (Clark Honors College) stated that having "anyone, including sexual misconduct, not including harassment" was very ugly. She suggested that the sentence be rewritten.
Professor Bonine suggested that motion be postponed to a date certain due to time constraints.
Senate President Kyr stated that the amendment had to be voted on first. After an inaudible comment from Professor Bonine, Senate President Kyr asked if anyone was willing to propose postponing to a time definite, November 5th. Senator Bill Harbaugh proposed the postponement, which was then seconded. Senate President Kyr invited discussion; hearing none, he then called for a voice vote and the postponement carried.
Professor Bonine tried to see if there were any motions that could be addressed in the remaining time. There were none, and he requested that the remaining motions be the first priority at the November 5th meeting.
Senate President Kyr assured Professor Bonine that it would be the first issue addressed at the November 5th meeting and requested that the full Senate attend the upcoming October 22nd meeting, as it would be one of the most important meetings of the year.
8. OTHER BUSINESS
8.1 Reception for Award Winners: A Time to Celebrate
Senate President Kyr closed by thanking the Senate and inviting them to enjoy the reception in celebration of the awardees and their service.
Senate President Kyr called the October 8, 2014 meeting of the University Senate to a close at 5:00 p.m.
Present: John Ahlen, Monique Balbuena, Richard Chartoff, Jane Cramer, Paul Dassonville, John Davidson, Kassia Dellabough, Michael Dreiling, Alexandre Dossin, Christopher Eckerman, Jennifer Ellis, Ali Emami, Pedro García-Caro, William Harbaugh, Deborah Healey, Mary Ann Hyatt, Qusheng Jin, Theodora Ko Thompson, Robert Kyr, David Landrum, Jun Li, Richard Margerum, Debra Merskin, Bruce Mc Gough, Jimmy Murray, Regina Psaki, Gordon Sayre, Helena Schlegel, Lisa Raleigh, Randy Sullivan, Bruce Tabb, Edward Teague, Debra Thurman, Arkady Vaintrob, Peter Warnek
Absent: Liz Avalos, Robert Elliott, James Harper, Huaxin Lin, Charles Martinez, Hugo Nicolas, Deborah Olson, Jerry Rosiek, Brent Rovianek, Emily Wu
Excused: Miriam Deutsch, Ken Prehoda, Reza Rejaie, Margie Paris
1.CALL TO ORDER
Senate President Robert Kyr (Music) called the May 28, 2014 meeting of the University of Oregon Senate to order at 3:05 p.m. in room 115 Lawrence Hall.Senate President Kyr thanked those in attendance for coming to the meeting. He stated that the current meeting was one of the most important meetings in the history the University, and that the Senate would be looking at very challenging events, their aftermath, and the actions the Senate would take going forward.
2.APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Senate President Kyr stated that the first item on the agenda was the approval of the minutes.He explained that the Senate did not have a transcript of any of the minutes yet, and indicated that they would be available in October.He stated that he did not want to spend the Senate’s time on the minutes given the nature of the current meeting.He added that a transcription of the Campus Forum was available, and he encouraged those in attendance to read it or watch the video of the meeting.He stated that the Campus Forum was deeply moving and filled with creative ideas that had inspired the Senate to fine-tune the motions that would be considered during this meeting.
Senate President Kyr stated that the next item on the agenda was the University Update, which would be delivered by President Gottfredson. Senate President Kyr noted that President Gottfredson had to leave immediately after his remarks because he had another appointment.He indicated, therefore, that there would not be time for questions.
President Gottfredson thanked Senate President Kyr and stated that he would be brief in light of the busy agenda the Senate faced.He indicated that he would begin by speaking about the issue of sexual violence and intimidation on the UO campus, noting that this was a topic that remained on everyone’s mind.He related that earlier in the day, he had spoken with the Classified Staff Training and Development Advisory Committee, and he explained that the theme of their meeting was committing to end sexual abuse, discrimination, and harassment in the campus community.He stated that the agenda had included: tabletop discussions about how to support people who have witnessed harassment or discrimination, ways to improve new mandatory sexual harassment prevention training for faculty and staff, and other ways to create a safer campus community.He added that he was encouraged to see that this was the chosen theme for the meeting, and that he was glad that these conversations were taking place.He shared his observation that everyone on campus was talking about this issue, addressing it head on, and collectively working to find solutions.He stressed that keeping the discussion front and center, acknowledging the problem, engaging in respectful discourse, and bringing the University community’s collective expertise to the problem were all critical steps toward enacting the kind of deep, cultural change that is needed on campus.He noted that even as the University was making some progress, there was still much to do. He added that when he arrived at the University nearly two years prior, he was surprised to learn that there was no mandatory sexual harassment prevention training for faculty and staff on campus.This observation had prompted him to work with the Faculty Advisory Committee to begin one.He stated that prevention training could still be improved, and that Provost Scott Coltrane was gathering data on the issue.He also related that upon his arrival, he discovered there was no Ombudsperson.He noted that the University was very fortunate to now have Ombudsperson Bruce McAllister on campus.He continued by stating that he appreciated all of the hard work the people at Student Affairs had done in addressing issues of sexual misconduct prevention response amongst the students, and in implementing a multidimensional strategy to address these issues from many different perspectives.He added that he appreciated their receptiveness to ideas in the evaluations such as the Groves Report.He commented that the University was making progress with a couple of the immediate measures that he had announced earlier in the month.He elaborated that the University was in the process of adding two more staff positions—aligned with the recommendations of the White House Task Force—to augment support for survivors.He explained that the first position would be a Sexual Violence Response and Support Services Director who would provide confidential support and advocacy for survivors.He stated that the second position would be an Equal Opportunity Specialist and Title IX Investigator in Affirmative Action who would help manage the influx of sexual assault and misconduct reporting that had been seen recently.He added that a decision regarding who would serve on the external review panel—which he had announced with the Vice President for Student Affairs and the Athletic Director—was close to being finalized.He noted that this panel would examine the campus-wide efforts to prevent and respond to sexual violence, misconduct, and intimidation; and that it would also review the University’s support services, education efforts, recruiting practices, and recent efforts to improve the Code of Conduct policies.He noted that he had received several suggestions from members of the campus community regarding the panel, and added that he was very grateful for them.He explained that the panel would be in place as soon as schedules could be arranged, and that he was eager for them to get to work.He stressed that it was necessary to discuss what could be done over the summer to support sexual violence prevention efforts and campus safety.He added that he found it immensely encouraging that there were so many individuals and groups who wanted to do this, and who were offering their ideas and expertise; and he thanked the members of the Senate who were deeply engaged in these efforts and discussions.He stated that the Senate would be considering several changes to the Student Conduct Code—including two that were recommended by the Groves Report—that he believed would help improve the safety of the campus. He elaborated that one change would extend the jurisdiction of the Student Conduct Code off campus, and that the other would lower the burden of proof required in such cases.He expressed his belief in the importance of these changes, and added that he was glad to see that they would come up for consideration in the current meeting.He stated that the Administration would continue to work over the summer to keep these conversations and discussions at the fore.He added that these conversations had been—and would continue to be—difficult.He acknowledged that the problem facing the University was deep, complex, and would take an extended collective effort to address.He expressed his commitment to this effort.He stated that he also wanted to speak to the Senate about the Academic Freedom Policy, which had been approved by the Senate last month.He stated that he had signed this policy, and explained that he would be sending a memo that outlined the context for this decision to the Senate President.He noted that this memo would also be also posted on his website.He stated that the University had a long and exceptional history of very strong protections for academic freedom and freedom of speech, and that the University had consistently been on the right side of this issue.He noted that the fierce protection of these freedoms was part of the University’s culture, and he expressed his belief that this was something to be very proud of.He stated that academic freedom at the University was protected by an OAR that covered academic freedom for all of Oregon's universities, and added that representative faculty were also protected by Article V of the United Academics Collective Bargaining Agreement.He noted that the University had additional policies, such as the Community Standards Affirmation and the UO Policy on Freedom of Inquiry and Free Speech.He stated that these policies, taken together, provided a very robust set of protections.He continued by expressing his view that further strengthening these protections would be best accomplished by including clarifications similar to those that had recently been adopted by other AAU universities, including the Universities of California and Washington.He noted that he favored adding language that would explicitly recognize that the traditional academic freedom principles extend to speech concerning University policies.He added that this recognition was timely in that it ensured that academic freedom at the University of Oregon would not be narrowed by the United States Supreme Court's decision in Garcetti vs. Ceballos.He stated that this was a very important addition to the Universities policies, and that he was very pleased to sign it.He added that research universities are absolutely dependent on these freedoms, and that this was why he had approached this issue with care and deliberation.He expressed his belief that the University of Oregon has one of the strongest academic freedom policies in the country.He closed by thanking the Senators for their time and the work that they had done on behalf of the University.
Senate President Kyr thanked President Gottfredson for his remarks and invited those individuals who had contributed to the writing of the Academic Freedom and Freedom of Speech Policy to stand up so they could be acknowledged.He thanked Gottfredson for signing the policy and stated that it was great news for all.
Senate President Kyr asked the Senate if it would like to consider suspending the rules for the entire meeting so that visitors could make comments.He added that otherwise, the Senate would have to suspend the rules for each motion as it went along.Noting the shortage of time and the breadth of the agenda, Senate President Kyr asked the Senate if it would entertain such a motion at this time, adding that it would need to be formally moved, seconded, and voted on.
An unidentified speaker asked if this motion was strictly for participation.
Senate President Kyr confirmed that it was only for participation, and that it would not extend to voting.He noted that Debra Merskin (School of Journalism and Communication) had volunteered to make the motion and Kassia Dellabough (PODS) seconded it.A voice vote was taken, and the motion passed unanimously. Senate President Kyr stated that visitors would be allowed to make comments, and that they would have a speaker's list style for the current meeting.
Senate President Kyr stated that the first motion that the Senate would consider would be the Curriculum Report, which was always done at the end of each quarter. He recognized Chair of the Committee on Courses, James Imamura (Physics).
Professor Imamura stated that the motion had been posted online two weeks prior to the meeting, and noted that a set of errata and an amendment had been made earlier in the day.He stated that apart from these changes, the report was essentially the same as the original submission.He proceeded to invite questions from the Senate.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Kassia Dellabough (PODS).
Senator Dellabough stated that she would like the Senate to reconsider how it dialogued about the Curriculum Report.She expressed her belief that it was the core of the work that the University does, and that she felt the Senate did not give it enough attention.She stated that she was not sure how to do this, but noted that she would love to have the Senate think about it for next year.
Senate President Kyr stated that he thought this was a significant comment, and that there were many ways for the Senate to address it. He suggested that it could start with the Senate Executive, who would then bring something to the body for consideration.He thanked Senator Dellabough, and added that he would like to take a moment to thank the Senate Executive Coordinator for all of her hard work.Senate President Kyr invited further discussion.None followed, and Senate President Kyr stated that he would like to call the question.He suggested that the motion did not need to be read, because it came before the Senate each quarter and essentially required a straightforward decision to pass it or not.A voice vote was taken, and the motion carried unanimously.
Senate President Kyr stated that there had been a strong response to the call for service this year and that there was strong representation across all of the committees, as well as in the incoming Senate.He thanked the members of the Senate for their service.
4.3 Announcement of Run-Off Elections; Lisa Mick Shimizu, Senate Executive Coordinator
Senate President Kyr moved forward to the announcement of the run-off elections.He noted that there were three ties, and also some areas in which there was a need for additional representation.He stated that the run-off elections would be happening shortly, and asked Senate Executive Coordinator Lisa Mick Shimizu to provide the Senate with details.
Senate Executive Coordinator Mick Shimizu stated that the run-off elections would begin on Monday, June 2nd and end on Friday, June 6th at 5:00 p.m.She added that the procedure would be the same as before in that there would be an email sent to the entire campus asking people to vote through DuckWeb.She requested that people keep their eyes open for this email, and that they vote.
Senate President Kyr also asked everyone present to vote, noting that having three ties was almost unheard of.He stated that it was important to move forward on this, and stressed that full representation was needed.
4.4 Senate Budget Committee, Interinstitutional Faculty Senate, and COIA Representative Elections (Fall 2014); Lisa Mick Shimizu, Senate Executive Coordinator
Senate President Kyr stated that these elections would be addressed in the fall in order to save time during the current meeting.He asked Senate Executive Coordinator Mick Shimizu to provide the details.
Senate Executive Coordinator Mick Shimizu stated that there was not much to say except that they would be conducted via email; she reminded the Senate that the same thing had been done with the Senate Budget Committee earlier in the year.She noted that the COIA election was done through the Senate Executive Committee.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senate Executive Coordinator Mick Shimizu and continued to the next item on the agenda.
Senate President Kyr stated that there were two candidates in this election: Christopher Phillips (Mathematics) and Randy Sullivan (Chemistry).He stated that Professor Phillips was unable to be present and that he would read his statement, which is reproduced in its entirety below:
I apologize for not being here.I am at the Great Plains Operator Theory Seminar.This time, it really is in the Great Plains, but last year it was in Berkeley; and a few years ago it was in Puerto Rico.Huaxin Lin keeps nominating me.He is my main research competitor here, and if he manages to get me elected, he will get a year ahead of me.More seriously, I see the visible part of the job of the Senate VP and President as trying to make the Senate run smoothly.They can get things considered that might fall through the cracks, but can't block issues or force particular outcomes. Some years ago, it looked like a Senate President promised a University President (not the current one) that something wouldn't pass, and was greatly embarrassed when it did.Regardless of the actual events, one thing is clear: this sort of promise is not for the Senate President to make.The Senate needs more visibility.In the current election, some seats will go vacant for lack of candidates.I've served several terms in the Senate, and there wasn't even a good mechanism for communicating to my own department what the Senate did.Announcements at department meetings didn't work—we have too few.We could send a broadcast email after each meeting with a brief summary of what happened; I hate to add to bulk UO email, but this may be a good enough cause.Personal involvement of Senators—and particularly, the Senate President and VP—might help (going to department meetings, phone calls, anything).Years ago, I spent time trying to recruit Senate candidates; someone needs to do that again, too.Like other universities, our Administration is too big and expensive.Administrations are growing much faster than faculties, enrollments, courses taught, and research.I was appalled when, not long ago, an administrator-broadcast message said that the UO Administration had been growing more slowly than average, but still faster than teaching and research, and that this meant the UO was under-administered.For better or worse, MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) are likely to be seriously disruptive.I have no prescriptions, but we can't ignore them.Some things are being done; but in at least some ways, it is very primitive.My advanced course at the Fields Institute last quarter was broadcast live, and got a significant remote audience.My graduate student is still there, but I wasn't able to even arrange to have him see the lectures for my course this quarter.I will use all the influence I can muster to get better spam blocking.There are well over 5,000 open-access fake journals, which charge large fees to publish junk.More and more of them span far out of their areas (I get things about Engineering, Philosophy, and Sociology) and work to evade spam filters.Central action can save us much time."
Senate President Kyr stated that since the candidate was not present, there would be no questions. He invited the next candidate, Randy Sullivan, to deliver his statement.
Senator Sullivan stated that he agreed with everything Senator Phillips had said.He noted that he had spoken with Senator Phillips regarding spam blocking, and expressed his interest in working with him on this issue regardless of who the Senate chose to elect.He stated that he would speak briefly due to the Senate’s full agenda.He stated that he believed one of his strengths was his ability to see a way ahead when things get deadlocked.He commented that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results, and noted that he thought that the Senate had been locked in a reactive pattern for some time.He stated that he saw that things were beginning to change and attributed this to the work of the current President, the previous President, the new Board, and the Administration.He expressed his belief that one of the biggest roadblocks that faced the Senate was its tendency to see all the issues through the lens of its own set of values.He stated that the Senate often wrongfully assumed that other sets of values were mutually exclusive, where in fact they were complementary. He stated that the drive for excellence exhibited by the athletic community, the sense of brotherhood and sisterhood in the Greek community, the hard work and dedication of the classified staff, the sense of inquiry and intellectual honesty of the faculty, and the sense of efficiency and service among the administrators were all good qualities that the Senate needed.He continued by stating that it was problematic to think that one set of values was the only set of values.He stressed that the Senate needed to open up, listen to each other, and realize that the various values present at the University complement each other.He closed by stating that if he was elected, he would work toward helping the University become an excellent university by empowering each of the constituencies that make up the community.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Sullivan and invited him to remain at the microphone to take questions.None were put forth, and Senate President Kyr initiated the voting process. He stated that the vote would be held by secret ballot.Noting the time constraints that the Senate was working under, Senate President Kyr stated that the meeting would continue and the results of the election would be announced later.
Senate President Kyr stated that the next item to be addressed was the “Task Force to Address Sexual Violence and Survivor Support” motion.He invited the motion’s sponsor, Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology), to make the motion so they could proceed.
Senator Dreiling stated that he wished to advance the motion.
Senate President Kyr called for a second.
Senator Debra Merskin (School of Journalism and Communication) seconded the motion.
It was brought to Senate President Kyr’s attention that the Senate would first need to consider suspending the rules in order to consider this motion.
Senator Regina Psaki (Romance Languages) moved to suspend the rules.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) seconded the motion.
Senate President Kyr invited discussion, and after responding to an inaudible question from Senator Ellis, he called for a voice vote.The motion to suspend the rules passed unanimously.Senate President Kyr proceeded to read the motion, after which he invited Senator Dreiling to provide the Senate with background.
Senator Dreiling thanked Senate President Kyr, and thanked the Senate for sustaining its care and attention to this matter.He stated that the motion had arisen out of discussion during the previous Senate meeting, and that he had volunteered to draft the motion and submit it to the Senate List Serve.He noted in the motion had been vetted and debated on the Senate List Serve after the Forum of the previous week, and that it had received changes through this process.He stated that while much of the structure of the motion remained the same, he did wish to acknowledge that there was a fairly significant involvement on the part of the University Senate, as well as the University community, in putting it together.He added that he understood that there were still issues that might require tweaking.He stated that when the motion refers to things like the “University's response" that it refers to everyone, not just the institution or the administration.He added that the point of the motion was to draw together a concerted effort to carry forward proactive resolution and action.He continued that this action was meant to confront the challenging task of changing the culture and practices of sexual violence, ascertain the impacts that it has on survivors, and address the failures to provide for the students impacted by sexual assault and violence.
Senate President Kyr opened the floor for discussion and recognized Senator Jane Cramer (Political Science).
Senator Cramer stated that she thought the motion had been reviewed by all members of the Senate and conveyed her opinion that the motion was “obviously a good move.”She expressed her wish to call the question as soon as possible so that the Senate could move on to other matters.
Senate President Kyr thanked Professor Cramer for her comment.
An unidentified speaker from the floor asked how the efforts of the Task Force and the individuals working on adding a related class to the curriculum would interact.She added that she thought there should be dialogue between these two groups.
Senator Dreiling stated that he believed the task force could play a central role in working with the Undergraduate Council to make sure that the curriculum issues that had been raised were thoroughly vetted.He stated that he would be open to making a motion directing the Task Force to work with those pursuing the inclusion of Women and Gender Studies classes as part of the multicultural requirement.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Kassia Dellabough (PODS).
Senator Dellabough stated that Section 2.1 directs the Task Force to initiate “sustained, proactive changes aimed at ending sexual violence and supporting survivors," and suggested that it could be strengthened by directly naming the Student Conduct Code and the Undergraduate Council as bodies it would work with.She stated that she thought the Task Force was meant to be proactive in terms of following up any initiatives to ensure that they do not fall through the cracks.She added that the Task Force should be shepherding things forward, and making sure all the relevant people are involved in the conversation.
Senate President Kyr suggested that Section 2.1 could be changed to specify that the Task Force would work with "all education initiatives," and that entirely new language wouldn't have to be drafted. He recognized Senator Pedro Garcia-Caro (Romance Languages).
Senator Garcia-Caro stated that he would be happy to move to change the wording of Section 2.1 to include language that would specify that the mandate of the Task Force include curricular changes and discussion with the constituencies.He specified that he would change the end of Section 2.1 to read: "...a variety of changes aimed at ending sexual violence and supporting survivors of sexual violence, including looking into curricular changes that might be required."
Senate President Kyr invited discussion and recognized Senator Randy Sullivan (Chemistry).
Senator Sullivan stated that he thought the amendment might introduce unintended consequences.He added that this amendment would add another layer to an already lengthy curriculum development and approval process.He stated that he thought it was better to let the motion stand alone, and that the Task Force was already free to work with the Undergraduate Council and other committees involved in the curriculum development process.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Sullivan for his comments and recognized Senator Garcia-Caro.
Senator Garcia-Caro stated that in its current state, it seemed like the Task Force's charge was vast and essentially wide open, and as a consequence, he thought that it would be good to specify that the Task Force be involved in the curricular change that had been proposed.He added that he thought this would unify the Senate’s approach as opposed to creating parallel processes that would waste time.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Helena Schlegel (Student Senator).
Senator Schlegel stated that as the sponsor of another motion regarding the curriculum, she favored placing a new clause in Section II that would more concretely outline the Task Force's involvement in curricular changes.She explained that she thought the “including possible curricular changes” language was too vague.
Senate President Kyr called for further discussion, and then for a vote on the amendment. The amendment was rejected, and he called for further discussion on the original motion.He recognized Senator Schlegel.
Senator Schlegel proposed adding a clause to the Section 2.4 of the motion which would read: "And be it further moved that this task force shall work with the Undergraduate Council, the Committee on Courses, Academic Departments, and the UO Administration on Proposals for mandatory courses addressing gender, sexuality, and social inequality to be presented to the Senate no later than Winter Term of 2015."
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Schlegel, and asked for discussion on her amendment. He recognized Senator Cramer.
Senator Cramer voiced her support for the amendment, stating that it sounded like a good way to unify the two efforts.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dreiling.
Senator Dreiling began a discussion on the motion in general, but was reminded that he was only allowed to discuss the amendment in question. He stated that he would bring his concerns at a later time.
Senate President Kyr requested further comments. None followed, and the amendment passed with a voice vote majority. He requested further discussion on the original motion and recognized Senator Charles Martinez (Education Methodology).
Senator Martinez stated that he had two suggestions. He stated that the language "Task Force" versus "Standing Committee" was important symbolically in terms of the extent to which the Senate thought of this as a reactive measure versus something that was about the culture.He proposed that language be added designating the group as a Standing Committee as opposed to a Task Force.He further proposed that Section 2.2 be changed to have two additional appointees who are staff members involved in direct services to students affected by sexual violence.
Senate President Kyr stated that only one amendment could be proposed at a time, and asked Senator Martinez to state which amendment he would to propose first.
Senator Martinez proposed that the language be changed from “Task Force” to “Standing Committee.”
Senate President Kyr told the Senate Executive Coordinator that it would not be necessary to change “Task Force” to “Standing Committee” throughout the entire motion at the meeting, and that it could be fully amended at a later time.He invited discussion and recognized Senator Sullivan.
Senator Sullivan stated that he was opposed to having a Standing Committee. He stated that a Standing Committee was appointed by the President, and that he wanted it to be a Senate Committee.
Senate President Kyr stated that a Standing Committee was a Senate Committee.
Senator Sullivan agreed, but indicated that he wanted a committee that would be appointed by the Senate Executive Committee and not by the President.He stated that the proposed group would need to act fast, and that organizing a Standing Committee would take time and careful consideration.He added that he would be chairing the Committee on Committees, and guaranteed that there would be a motion presented to the Senate for a Standing Committee on Student Safety as a result.He stated that there were some provisions in the motion that were appropriate for a Task Force, and not a Standing Committee; and he reiterated that he believed that “Task Force” was the proper designation.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics).
Senator Harbaugh stated that he agreed with Senator Sullivan. He added that he thought it was fine to call the proposed group a Task Force, and that the current amendment was not substantive.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dellabough.
Senator Dellabough suggested that the motion could be changed to specify that the Task Force would be converted into a Standing Committee upon completion of its initial work.
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would have to vote on the current amendment before they could address the change that Senator Dellabough was suggesting.He suggested that she propose the amendment after the current amendment was voted on.
Professor John Bonine (Law) stated that he agreed with Senator Dellabough that there should be a Standing Committee, but that he did not agree that it should be part of the current motion.He explained that task forces typically involved people outside of the Senate, such as the Administration. He added that setting up a Standing Committee would be too complex and that it would be better to keep the proposed group as a Task Force with the understanding that the Senate would move to a Standing Committee after the nature of such a committee had been determined.
Senate President Kyr requested further discussion.None followed, and he proceeded to call the question.A voice vote was held and the amendment was rejected.Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dellabough.
Senator Dellabough proposed that the deadline in Section 2.3 be amended to read: “by the second Senate meeting of Fall 2014, at which time the Task Force will be converted into a Standing Committee.” There was a suggestion from the audience which prompted Senator Dellabough to change “will be converted to a Standing Committee” to “will propose a structure for a Standing Committee.”
Senate President Kyr requested discussion on the amendment.None followed, and the amendment passed with a voice vote. Senate President Kyr returned the discussion to the full motion, and recognized Senator Martinez.
Senate Martinez proposed amending Section 2.2 so that the Task Force would include “two staff members who provide direct services in bias education and response to sexual violence for students.”
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Harbaugh.
Senator Harbaugh stated that he thought the Task Force would obviously consult with staff with this kind of expertise, and that if the Task Force got too large it would introduce difficulties in terms of scheduling.He added that he thought that it should be up to the discretion of the Senate President and the Task Force to determine what kind of input they would seek.
Senate President Kyr invited further discussion. He recognized Senator Dreiling.
Senator Dreiling stated that the current discussion spoke to his concern about workload, and noted that he also understood the concern voiced by Senator Harbaugh about over-complicating scheduling and other elements of the Task Force. He added, however, that he thought it was important to have members of the Task Force who were practitioners within the various service-directed institutions at U of O, and that this kind of expertise was not captured by the current layout.He reiterated that he thought it was important to have somebody who was involved in direct services on the Task Force even if it would complicate the scheduling.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Richard Chartoff (Chemistry).
Senator Chartoff stated that he thought the practitioner members of the Task Force should be people from outside the campus community who have expertise dealing with sexual violence and victims of sexual violence.
Senate President Kyr told Senator Chartoff that if he wanted to make another amendment he would have to wait until the Senate finished discussing the current amendment, but that his comments would be taken into consideration.He requested further comments.None followed, and the motion passed by a voice vote majority.Senate President Kyr asked Senator Chartoff if he wanted to propose an amendment.
Senator Chartoff stated that he would like to amend to motion so that it specified that the two members discussed in the previous motion be from outside the campus community, rather than staff members on campus.
Senate President Kyr requested the specific wording Senator Chartoff would like the Senate to consider.
Senator Chartoff stated that he wanted the motion to be changed to read: “two community members with expertise in dealing with sexual assault and counseling victims of sexual violence.”
Senate President Kyr invited discussion. He recognized Senator Lisa Raleigh (College of Arts & Sciences).
Senator Raleigh stated that she wondered whether the issue could be addressed by having the two additional nominees be recommended by the UO-CESV.She added that the motion did not currently specify whether the nominees would be internal or external.
Senate President Kyr invited coalition member Professor Freyd (Psychology) to comment on whether Senator Raleigh's suggestion was feasible.
Professor Freyd stated that all the members of the coalition were UO people.She asked if that was the question.
Senate President Kyr clarified that the members would be "recommended by," and not "members of" the coalition.
An unidentified speaker stated that she was part of the coalition, and that she would rather choose from amongst coalition members. She added that she would be against having the coalition nominate outside members.
A second unidentified speaker stated that she was also a member of the coalition, and that she was against the proposal, as well.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Martinez.
Senator Martinez stated that he appreciated that having an outside perspective would be beneficial to the Task Force, but noted that he did not think this would serve as a replacement for the skill of the Student Affairs professionals.He elaborated by stating that University students are at a place in their personal development that requires a particular kind of expertise, and that there was no proxy for that. He reiterated that he was not opposed to the idea of having an outside perspective, but that he did not see it as a replacement for the skill of the Student Affairs professionals.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Chartoff, the maker of the amendment.
Senator Chartoff stated that the reason he suggested involving members outside of the University was that there were victims from the University who sought help off campus. He stated that they did this because they did not feel comfortable seeking help within the University.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Cramer.
Senator Cramer expressed her agreement with Senator Chartoff's statement that victims often needed help from people outside the University.She added that she thought the Task Force should have outside expertise just as much as any other expertise.
Senate President Kyr asked Senator Chartoff to clarify if he wanted outside experts to replace the internal experts the that Task Force already called for, or if he wanted the outside experts to serve as an addition to the internal experts.
Senator Chartoff stated that he wanted to substitute the internal experts for experts from outside the University.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dellabough.
Senator Dellabough stated that, in the interest of the Task Force being able to move forward quickly, she thought involving members from outside the University would be more appropriate when the Task Force was changed into a Standing Committee.She suggested that the motion should be changed to indicate that community membership of the Standing Committee would part of the long-term planning.
Senate President Kyr stated that Senator Dellabough's suggestion would have to be another amendment in addition to the one being discussed.He recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor Bonine stated that he thought that staff members who deal with sexual violence on campus should be involved in the coalition.He added that working together within the University had benefits in terms of getting everyone involved “on the same page.”He stated that he thought the Senate should vote down Senator Chartoff's amendment because it would exclude the University staff members who deal with sexual violence from the Task Force.
Senate President Kyr recognized Assistant Vice President Dean of Students, Paul Shang.
Mr. Shang stated that he wished to speak against the proposed amendment because he felt that the Task Force needed to representation from University members who were assigned to work with survivors and individuals reporting instances of sexual misconduct.Additionally, he noted that the University worked within the context of Title IX, and that Title IX was not applicable outside of the University.
Senate President Kyr invited further questions and discussion.None followed, and he called the question.He proceeded to call for a voice vote on the motion to amend, which failed by a majority.Senator Kyr asked Senator Dellabough if he had correctly understood her intention to propose an amendment.
Senator Dellabough proposed to amend Section 2.3 with the following addition: "at which time the Task Force will propose a structure for a Standing Committee to include community members outside the University with expertise in dealing with sexual assault and counseling victims of sexual violence."
Senate President Kyr invited discussion on the amendment and recognized Senator Jennifer Ellis (Finance).
Senator Ellis stated that she disagreed with the proposed change.She suggested that it was already implicitly written into the Task Force’s responsibilities to address those issues for which the Standing Committee was being proposed.
Senate President Kyr invited additional comments.None followed, and he called for a voice vote on the amendment.The motion failed by a majority.Senate President Kyr returned the discussion to the main motion and recognized Senator Arkady Vaintrob (Mathematics).
Senator Vaintrob requested clarification on Section 2.2.He asked if the maker of the motion had intended for the entirety of the Task Force membership to be appointed by the Senate President.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Dreiling.
Senator Dreiling confirmed that all members of the Task Force were to be appointed by Senate President Kyr.
Senate President Kyr interjected that there was an understanding that all of the appointments would be made in consultation with the Senate Executive Committee.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Sullivan.
Senator Sullivan extended an apology to Senate President Kyr regarding his vehement objection to “rolling this over in Standing Committee.”He stated that he had reviewed Section 2.2 in haste, and had mistakenly read it as “all appointed by the University President,” and not the Senate President.He added that he still supported leaving it as it was, but wanted to clarify the cause of his vehemence.
Senate President Kyr thanked Senator Sullivan and indicated that his apology was not necessary.He recognized Senator Cramer, who proceeded to call the question.The vote to close the debate carried, and Senate President Kyr called for a voice vote on the motion.The motion passed, and Senate President Kyr moved to the next item on the agenda.
Senate President Kyr stated that this motion had been received as seconded by the Student Conduct and Community Standards Committee.He read the motion and invited Sandy Weintraub, the Director of Student Conduct and Community Standards, to provide the Senate with some background.
Mr. Weintraub explained that the purpose of the motion was to achieve a consistent definition of “consent” throughout the Student Conduct Code.He noted that the term “consent” was not currently defined by the Student Conduct Code, but that the term “explicit consent” was.He stated the proposed change would simply add the word “explicit” to those sections where consent was not yet defined this way.
Senate President Kyr thanked Mr. Weintraub for his remarks and invited discussion.He recognized Senator Jane Cramer (Political Science).
Senator Cramer thanked Mr. Weintraub and stated that she wished to call the question.
Senate President Kyr called for a voice vote to end discussion.The vote to end discussion passed, and Senate President Kyr proceeded to call for a voice vote on the motion.The motion passed, and Senate President Kyr moved to the next item on the agenda.
Senate President Kyr noted that this motion had also been put forward by the Student Conduct and Community Standards Committee, and that Sandy Weintraub was the convener.He read the motion and invited Mr. Weintraub to provide the Senate with some background on it.
Mr. Weintraub explained that the change described in Section I 1.1 of the motion was intended only for sanctioning.He stated that the current Burden of Proof to find a student responsible for a violation of any section of the Student Conduct Code was a preponderance of information.He stated that the motion only changed the standard of evidence that could be used for expulsion as a sanction.He noted that expulsion was the only sanction that required clear and convincing evidence, and explained that this motion would make it so that all sanctions under all sections of the Student Conduct Code, including expulsion, would require a preponderance of evidence.
Senate President Kyr invited discussion on the motion.He recognized Professor Caroline Forell (Law).
Professor Forell stated that she wished to make a “friendly amendment” to Section II 2.1. University Hearings Panels Hearings.She proposed changing the phrase “preponderance of evidence” to “preponderance of information,” which would achieve consistency throughout the code.
Senate President Kyr invited discussion and received indication from Mr. Weintraub that the change was fully supported.He stated that he heard a member of the Senate call the question, and proceeded to call for a voice vote to end the debate.The outcome of the vote was unclear, so a count was taken.The vote carried by a majority, and Senate President Kyr called for a vote on the amendment.The amendment passed by a majority, and Senate President Kyr returned the discussion to the main motion.He recognized an undergraduate student from the floor.
The undergraduate student, Thomas, introduced himself and urged the Senate to vote against the motion.He expressed his belief that lowering the standard of evidence required for disciplinary action under the Student Conduct Code would not ensure the necessary presumption of innocence, due process, and burden of proof that are in place to protect students accused of wrongdoing.He stated that he believed the Education Department’s recommendation of lowering the standard of evidence was based on a misinterpretation of Title IX, and added that as a student at the University, he believed that disciplinary measures such as expulsion should require clear and convincing evidence of wrongdoing instead of slightly greater than 50% likelihood.He stated that he thought that actions were necessary to protect students from sexual violence, but that the current motion was not the right way to accomplish this.
Senate President Kyr invited further discussion and recognized Assistant Dean of Students, Chicora Martin.
Ms. Martin stated that as Assistant Dean of Students, she was responsible for overseeing the Student Conduct process.She stated that she appreciated Thomas’ comments, and that she wished to respond.She stated that this amendment had gone through the Conduct Committee and had therefore received involvement from University students, faculty, and staff who were charged through ASUO with providing student feedback.Ms. Martin emphasized that the amendment was needed in order to ensure compliance with Title IX and the Consultants Report.She noted that when a violation is suspected, accused students are given the option of having their case heard in an administrative hearing, in which case they are not at risk for expulsion, suspension, or negative notation unless they waive their right.She added that these sanctions are only discussed if a student opts for a panel hearing—an alternative which represents less than one percent of all cases.She added that she understood the concerns surrounding the issue and gave her assurance that these cases were taken very seriously.She stated that expulsion was considered an extreme sanction, but maintained that the University’s compliance with Title IX where sanctions were concerned was of vital importance.She closed by stressing the importance of ensuring equitable application of the code.
Senator Kyr invited further discussion and recognized Professor John Davidson (Political Science).
Professor Davidson stated that the explanations that had been provided in order to justify the motion seemed to focus on compliance with Title IX.He suggested that if compliance with Title IX was the objective, it did not make sense to extend the change in the burden of proof to expulsions that Title IX is not concerned with.He stated that this would result in a significant reduction of due process available to students and that it should be explained.He also asserted that the Title IX explanation that appeared in the preamble did not make sense.He acknowledged that some individuals in the Civil Rights Office had expressed a preference for a lower standard of burden of proof, but stated that the explanation they provided for this did not seem sensible.He stated that it did not seem reasonable to talk about consistency between the burden of proof applied to students accused of wrongdoing and the burden of proof applied to institutions accused of non-compliance with Title IX.He stated that: “an institution's due process, interests, and rights are very different than an individual's due process and rights.An institution doesn't have a personal reputation that's damaged, an institution doesn't get expelled.An institution doesn't have to go to a new school and potentially go there for an extra two years.”He asserted that the two were apples and oranges, and that there could be no consistency between the burden of proof that applied to an institution and the one that applied to accused individuals.
Senate President Kyr invited further discussion and recognized Senator Peter Warnek (Philosophy).
Senator Warnek stated that a recent rule-making session for the Department of Education had resulted in the preponderance mandate being rescinded.He continued by stating that the claim that compliance with Title IX required changing the standard of proof was based on guidance from the Department of Education, and that their position had changed.He added that he felt the Senate should take seriously that the Department of Education had changed its position due to the heavy criticism that the preponderance mandate received when the letter was released from the OCR.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Jane Cramer (Political Science).
Senator Cramer stated that many schools do not require a "clear and convincing" standard of evidence. She stated that the reason for this was to build a campus community that has a higher standard for conduct. She added that the purpose of the motion was to promote this higher standard.She stated that while she agreed expulsion did not require a "clear and convincing finding" it was still allowed to be applied in those situations.She reiterated that it allowed a community to set higher standards, and noted that many other universities had taken similar measures.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor John Bonine (Law).
Professor Bonine stated that he thought it was important for those present to understand that the Conduct Code was not about prison, crime, or criminality.He stated the Conduct Code was about educating students, and that its most serious sanctions were about protecting the University community against serious misbehavior by a particular student.He added that the community had the right to achieve that protection without the processes that would be applicable, for example, to criminal law.He continued by stating that the community has the right to remove from the University of Oregon's educational program any student who commits serious plagiarism, fraud, or exhibits violent behavior.He added that this was a community protection, and that the student could continue their education elsewhere.He stated that it was important to note that it was the duty of the University to prove by preponderance of the information, and that the student did not need to prove their innocence by preponderance.He added that based on the statistics that had been presented earlier in the meeting that only a tiny percentage of disciplinary situations would be affected.He stated that the belief that changing that standard was going to result in arbitrarily throwing people out of the University was wrong, and that he thought the proposed change was a modest one that put the University in accordance with good practices.He added that it was not a big threat to anybody except to those who pose a threat to the integrity or safety of the community.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Jennifer Ellis (Finance).
Senator Ellis stated that she did not feel prepared to vote on this matter and moved to postpone it until the next Senate meeting.She acknowledged that this would mean delaying the vote until the first week in October.
Senate President Kyr called for a voice vote on Senator Ellis’s motion.The results were uncertain, so a count was taken.The vote to postpone failed by a majority (9 in favor; 20 opposed), and Senate President Kyr returned the Senate’s focus to the discussion.He recognized Deb Mailander.
Ms. Mailander introduced herself as a UO Officer of Administration and Alumni and stated that she wanted to discuss something that was not so emotionally charged.She presented a hypothetical scenario in which there was a protest, and vandalism occurred that had caused damage and incidental physical harm.She stated that in this hypothetical situation, it was more likely than not that John did it.She stated that using that preponderance standard in this scenario to find John guilty gave her concern.She added that she understood that emotional issues were at hand, and that there was an urgent need to do something, but that she found it uncomfortable that this change was being proposed in a fast-track manner.
Senate President Kyr recognized Chicora Martin.
Ms. Martin stated that she had overseen the Student Conduct process at the University of Oregon for ten years, and noted that during this time she had only expelled four people.She added that she would never expel a student for the type of behavior described in Ms. Mailander’s scenario, noting that to do so would be unethical and antithetical to the University’s educational mission.She explained that the professionals involved in the Student Conduct process actively work to retain students, and that expulsion was considered when students were believed to pose an ongoing safety risk to the campus community.She reiterated that in the case of more minor infractions, her objective was to retain students, to give them educational sanctions, to provide them with an opportunity to learn, and to give them an opportunity to contribute to the community.She asked that those present trust the individuals in charge of levying sanctions to act in an ethical and professional manner.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Davidson.
Senator Davidson stated that he still had a few concerns.He stated that although he did not know Ms. Martin, he trusted her; he added, however, that he did not know who she would be replaced by.He stated that when the Senate writes rules and policies, it does not design them with a pre-existent trust in whoever happens to occupy a position.He stated that policies were written in such a way to ensure that people will continue to behave in a trustworthy fashion—to account for the worst, as well as the best of people.He stated that the current standard was "clear and convincing," and that before somebody was expelled, it had to be clear that they did what they were being accused of.He stated that what the Senate was proposing was to say: "No, it doesn't really need to be clear.It doesn't really need to be convincing.If we could flip a coin and find a feather [then] maybe they did it.That's good enough. We'll kick them out."He stated that he might be okay with this standard if there was language in the code that stated "you cannot be expelled, except for serious threats to health and safety."He stated that while some might apply the standard properly, somebody else might decide: "Well, somebody was dealing drugs, and by gosh, we're tough on drugs and so we're going to expel them.We're going to make a point." He added that somebody who had been engaged in a marginal infraction might get expelled because they had political enemies.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Arkady Vaintrob (Mathematics).
Senator Vaintrob expressed that he had mixed feelings.He stated that when he first read the amendment, he thought it was just a technical issue.He noted, however, that he found himself asking why the Senate was doing this now, and that it sounded to him like the Senate was acting in response to the recent events.He stated that he did not see how the proposed changes were going to address the issue of sexual violence if such a tiny proportion of people were going to be affected by it.He added that the proposed changes might have unforeseen consequences, and that there was no reason it needed to be done so quickly.He suggested that the Senate postpone the motion until the fall so that everyone could study the issue.He noted that if it was not going to be postponed, then he would vote against it; and he suggested that the other Senators do the same.He stated that he felt that the document was not well-vetted, and that the people who read it were giving conflicting evidence.He added that he would like to talk about why expulsion required a high standard for evidence to begin with, noting that nobody had addressed that issue.He asked if the high standard of evidence was required because of Title IX, or because of some new scientific evidence from the law business. He stated that he would like to know the answers to these questions and be given time to study the issue. He closed by reiterating that he thought there was no real need to implement these changes so quickly.
Senate President Kyr recognized Mr. Weintraub, who wished to make a clarifying comment.
Mr. Weintraub stated that this motion had been passed by a majority during the April 10th meeting of the Student Conduct Committee.He noted that this had preceded the discussions about sexual misconduct that were currently circulating on campus, and that in reality, it had been in the works for quite some time.He stated that the motion was based on guidance from the Office of Civil Rights and the Department of Education, and that as things stood, the Student Conduct cases that were moving through the University’s system were out of compliance with their directives.He reiterated that the recent events were not the impetus for this change, noting that the discussions that were currently taking place in the Senate had happened earlier in the Student Conduct Committee.He stated that the Committee’s evaluation was informed by both student and student advocate representation, and that the issues that were presently being raised for debate in the Senate had previously been addressed in the Committee by these individuals.He echoed Ms. Martin’s sentiments regarding the rarity of expulsion as a sanction and the seriousness with which it was considered.He stated that as someone who was required to make these kinds of decisions often, he considered it remarkably difficult to advocate for the expulsion of a student.He expressed his firm belief in “doing everything possible to keep students on campus in almost any conceivable circumstance,” and noted that to date, he had only expelled two students over the course of his entire career.He further noted that the only circumstance in which an expulsion might be considered is if an accused student opts to have their case heard by the Senate-appointed University Hearings Board, which is charged with making determinations about appropriate sanctions in such cases.He added that it would be extraordinarily rare for a student to waive their right to go to a hearing, and that this would be the only case in which expulsion was an option.He continued by stating that while there was no specific rule, there was guidance and language in the Conduct Code that stated that suspensions and expulsions should only be used in cases that involve heath, safety, or something more serious.
Senate President Kyr recognized Jennifer Freyd (Psychology).
Professor Freyd stated that she wanted to correct some misinformation regarding claims of a change in the OCR’s stance.She stated that to her knowledge, the last official document published by the United States Department of Education Office of Civil Rights was released on April 29, 2014.She cited an excerpt from this document, titled Questions and Answers on Title IX and Sexual Violence, which read: "A balanced and fair process that provides the same opportunities to both parties will lead to sound and supportable decisions.Specifically […] the school must use a preponderance-of-the-evidence (i.e., more likely than not) standard in any Title IX proceedings, including any fact-finding and hearings."Professor Freyd offered to make a link to this document available to everyone.She closed by stating that she felt the issue was urgent, noting that the safety of the campus depended on having a clear definition of what a safe campus and community would consist of.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Mary Ann Hyatt (Law).
Professor Hyatt stated that she wanted to clarify that the individuals who had worked on the Student Conduct Code—and who were recommending the preponderance of information—were members of a Senate Committee.She noted that they had been expressly asked to work on this issue, and that their efforts predated the conversations that emerged in the wake of recent events.
Senator Kyr recognized an undergraduate student, Thomas, who had spoken previously.
Thomas stated that the idea that it is impossible to expel a student unless they choose to attend a hearing instead of an administrative conference was somewhat misleading.He stated that it was his understanding that when someone was in violation of the Student Conduct Code, they were given the option of either an administrative conference or a hearing; but he noted that this was a tough situation for the accused student because the administrative conference does not allow for an appeal to the disciplinary action.He stated that if an accused student wanted the right to an appeal, they would have to opt for a panel hearing and risk expulsion.He argued that if expulsion was as rare as had been suggested, it would be reasonable to require a clear and convincing standard of evidence.He also suggested that if expulsions were indeed carefully considered, a clear and convincing standard of evidence should seem reasonable.He added that he did not understand why the University would elect to hold its internal judicial system to a different standard than the United States Legal System with regards to a clear and convincing standard of evidence.He noted that someone had claimed earlier that the motion needed to pass in order to hold the University to a higher standard.He stated that this notion was “a little ironic” in his view, given that they were advocating for a lower standard of evidence.He added that he thought that the motion went against the cornerstones of due process and the presumption of innocence.He pointed out that while the motion was not implementing a presumption of guilt, it was also not a presumption of innocence if the standard was “a feather above 50%.”He stated that he wanted to address the Title IX misinterpretation that he had spoken of earlier in the meeting.He stated that it was his understanding that students could not be sued under Title IX, and that only institutions could be sued under Title IX. He stated that his understanding was that when Title IX addresses preponderance of evidence, it is only meant to be used when holding schools and universities accountable for inaction. He added that he did not think the preponderance of evidence standard was intended to be used for the expulsion of a student. He noted that several people mentioned that expulsion was not nearly as damning as a criminal record, and that the University could use a lower standard of evidence because they were not throwing people in jail. He stated that he thought this position was suggestive of a failure to fully consider the effects of expulsion on students. He asserted that expulsion could have a lifelong effect on a student to almost the same degree as a criminal conviction.
Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Cramer.
Professor Cramer stated that she was going to explain why a community, like the University of Oregon, could hold their students to a higher standard of conduct.She stated that she was educated in a liberal arts school, and that all liberal arts schools hold their students to higher standard of conduct.She stated that the way to hold the University community to a higher standard of conduct was to pass the motion being discussed. She stated that she, and many other members of the community who were victims of sexual violence, had transferred away from their university because they could not prove their case to a clear and convincing standard.She stated that a preponderance of evidence was the proper standard because a failure to implement it would effectively expel all survivors from the University community.She stated that this change had been “in the works” for a long time, and that the Senate should pass the motion now.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Warnek.
Senator Warnek stated that he was in favor of holding people to a higher standard, but that he thought the focus of the Senate’s current discussion was how to decide guilt or innocence.He stated that the question was: “what is the presumption of guilt and the standard that would determine that?”He added that he was not necessarily arguing against the motion, but that he thought that the Senate should be clear about its reasons for passing it.He stated that he did not think that Title IX made any sense as an argument for passing the motion.He noted that there had been a claim made by a previous speaker about misinformation, and he responded to this by referring to an excerpt from the Higher Education Journal reporting on the rule-making session from the Department of Education, which read: "The draft regulation approved Tuesday also scrapped a controversial effort by the Education Department to require campus sexual assault proceedings to adhere to guidance issued by the top department's Office of Civil Rights.In 2011, that office told colleges they must use a preponderance of the evidence standard for such proceedings—a lower threshold than the clear and convincing standard that many institutions have been using."He stated that this was from the end of April, and that the regulation was passed.He added that the documents from OCR would obviously not be up to date yet.He stated that the report attested to the fact that the Department of Education was rethinking their own mandate—to such an extent that had actually rescinded it.He stated that if the Senate passed the motion, they should not do it because they were attempting to comply with Title IX.He reiterated that was not arguing against the motion, but simply its passage under the pretext of complying with Title IX.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Sullivan (Chemistry).
Senator Sullivan noted that the situation was polarized.He thanked Senator Cramer for speaking and shared his observation that there were many people who wanted to ensure that the campus was a safe place for survivors.He stated that this kind of security was needed; he noted, however, that there were also strong voices in support of upholding the University’s tradition of protecting its students’ right to due process.He asked the Parliamentarian if it was possible to make a motion to return to committee.He thanked everyone on the committee for their work, and offered his assurance to students that their voices were being heard.He suggested that the committee redraft the motion with the intention of sharpening its focus.He specifically noted the need for a guarantee that this lower standard of evidence would only be used in instances that were deemed to pose a clear and present threat to the community in order to ensure that that due process would be protected while maintaining the safety of the community.He closed by formally moving to return the motion to committee, noting that that this would provide a way forward in which the interests of both groups were protected.
Senate President Kyr asked if he could call a vote without a discussion.
Professor Bonine interjected that he thought that the Senate needed to vote to close the discussion.
Senate President Kyr stated that the Parliamentarian disagreed with Professor Bonine, but the Senators made it clear that they wanted to have a discussion about Senator Sullivan's motion. Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Bonine.
Professor Bonine stated that he was very concerned about returning the motion to committee.He stated that the Senate had heard from one or two students who were concerned with changing the standard, but that they had not heard from the students who would not speak. He added that the Senate had not heard from the students who were in fear, who wanted a clearer standard, and who were worried about their own personal safety on campus.He questioned whether there was a student movement to stop changing the Conduct Code.He added that there were students on the committee, and noted that they had voted in favor of the change.Addressing the students that were concerned about the effect of expulsion on their record, he pointed out that suspension, transcript notations, and other punitive sanctions also appear on students’ records, and that each of these was determined according to a preponderance of the evidence.He suggested that if students really wanted a clear and convincing standard, that they should come back in the fall and argue that all sanctions that might go on one's record should not be adopted by a preponderance of the evidence.He suggested that sending the motion back to committee was the wrong action.He stated that it was clear that the Task Force would confront a lot of issues.He added that it was clear that a standing committee would be set up, and that things could be changed again.He asserted that there was no reason not to rationalize all of the University's standards—expulsion, notation on transcript, suspension, etc.—with the same standard, and that this was why he opposed sending the motion back to committee.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Charles Martinez (Education Methodology).
Senator Martinez also voiced his opposition to sending the motion back to committee.He expressed his belief that it was essential that the Senate act on the matter, and called attention—as others had earlier—to the fact that the motion had been crafted by the committee at the behest of the Senate with great care and with significant involvement from the campus community.He stated that perhaps the Senate was experiencing the echoes of a complicated conversation that had already occurred on campus, but that this did not mean that the Senate would necessarily reach a conclusion that could satisfy everyone.He stated that regardless of Title IX or the legal standard, the issue at hand was about the community the University intended to create and the norms it intended to have.He added that the motion was a powerful statement that had been through a very careful process. He stated that he was in opposition to the motion to send it back, and in favor of the Senate acting.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Deborah Healey (American English Institute).
Senator Healey stated that she was one of the Co-Chairs of the Student Conduct and Community Standards Committee, and she offered her assurances that the committee had “duked this out” in an extended process.She also noted that the student members on the committee were “not shy about promoting the student viewpoint” on the issue.She stated that the reason the motion had come before the Senate for consideration was because there were students and student advocates on the committee who were willing to agree to it.In view of this, she asserted that it was unlikely that returning it to the committee would result in significant change.She stated that the committee might return the motion with a provision for a higher standard in sexual violence cases, but noted that when a motion leaves the committee “it has come out of a rigorous, grueling, extensive, long-winded discussion […] and has probably been really, really thoroughly discussed.”
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Kassia Dellabough (PODS).
Senator Dellabough thanked Senator Healey for her remarks and added that she thought Senator Healey had brought up an important point.She stated that in order for the Senate to function, it had to trust that its committees were doing the work that had been asked of them.She stated that when committees come to the Senate with motions, the Senate must have faith that they have worked hard, exercised diligence, and availed themselves of proper representation.She noted that moving the matter forward now would not prevent its modification in the future.She added that improvements could be made and fine-tuned later on as the Senate moved through trying to make it a sustainable change
Senate President Kyr asked Senator Dellabough if she was calling the motion.
Senator Dellabough confirmed that she was calling the motion.
Senate President Kyr called for a voice vote to end the debate, which passed. He then called for a vote on the motion. The motion did not pass, and Senate President Kyr recognized Professor Davidson.
Senator Davidson proposed a modification to the redlined version of 571-021-0140 5(h). He suggested adding the words "except in cases involving alleged sexual assault," and restoring "if expulsion is a possibility, the standard of proof shall be clear and convincing information."He stated that the Senate could then lower the standard of proof for sexual assault, but leave it as it was for everything else.He noted that he would do exactly the same thing for 571-021-0210 Section 16.He explained that this would change the motion so that it would create a lower standard of review for sexual assault and also so that it would address concerns like those raised by Professor Cramer.He stated that these changes would maintain the University's tradition of having a slightly higher standard of review for expulsion.
Senate President Kyr recognized Chicora Martin, who wished to make a clarifying remark.
Ms. Martin stated that the amendment proposed by Senator Davidson had been discussed by the committee.She explained that the reason the committee did not incorporate this provision was because the definition of sexual assault was very specific in the Code. She explained that the committee was concerned that holding acts like physical assault to a different standard than those of sexual assault would create a double standard.She stated that the committee was also concerned about its charge to create a code that is not unclear or difficult.She reminded those present that the standard of evidence for expulsion was reviewed thoroughly by the committee, and that they had determined it to be the most appropriate thing to put forward.
Senate President Kyr invited further discussion.None followed, and he proceeded to call for a voice vote on the amendment.The amendment was rejected by a majority, and Senate President Kyr returned the discussion to the main motion.He recognized Senator Pedro Garcia-Caro (Romance Languages), who called the question.There was a majority vote to end the debate, and Senate President Kyr called for a voice vote on the main motion.The motion carried by a majority.
Senate President Kyr asked the Senate if it wished to extend the meeting until 5:30.A count was taken, and the vote to extend the meeting was passed.
Senate President Kyr proceeded to announce the results of the election for President-Elect.Senator Phillips received 2 votes, and Senator Sullivan received 31 votes, thereby becoming the new President-Elect.
Senate President Kyr invited Senate Executive Coordinator Mick Shimizu to deliver an announcement about the reception that was taking place after the meeting, and about the award winners.
Senate Executive Coordinator Mick Shimizu alerted the Senate to the fact that the award winners, along with their colleagues and supervisors, had been invited for the reception that was to be held at 5:00 in that room.
Senate President Kyr asked if any of the award winners needed to give their remarks prior to 5:30. He asked the Senate if they could extend the meeting in order to address one more item on the agenda, after which they would go to the reception. The vote to continue the meeting passed.
Due to the shortage of time, Senate President Kyr asked that the members of the Senate read the motion, and stated that they would have background and discussion afterwards.
Senate President Kyr gave the floor to Sandy Weintraub.
Mr. Weintraub explained that this was another motion that had been passed by the Student Conduct Committee, and stated that the Committee had been working on it for a long time.He noted that this was a long-term issue and stressed that while there were clearly some parts of it that related to sexual misconduct, this was not its sole focus.He explained that the purpose of the motion was to allow the University to respond to the reality that students are part of communities that are off-campus, and that just because a student leaves the exact boundary of campus does not mean that they are released from their responsibility to be a good citizen and a good community member.He stated that the proposed change would allow the University to work with students who may have violated the Student Conduct Code off-campus in a way that it was not currently allowed to.He reiterated that the motion had received extensive involvement and support from members of the faculty and Senate, and closed by inviting questions on it.
Senate President Kyr invited discussion.He recognized Professor Malcolm Wilson (Classics).
Professor Wilson prefaced his remarks by noting that he was not a member of the Senate; he clarified that he was statutory faculty and stated that he had previously been the Chair of the Student Conduct Committee for one session.He added that his first involvement with the issue under discussion was as a resident in the University neighborhood.He stated that the neighborhoods near campus had been subject to a large increase in student population, and that this had affected the long-term residents—mainly through disruptive parties.He stated that the residents of near-campus neighborhoods had encouraged the University to extend the Student Conduct Code so that the type of conduct expected on campus would be expected throughout the community.He stated that he had an amendment to change Subsection A to read: "adversely and significantly affects the learning and living environment." He added that he was simply proposing to add two words: "and living."He stated that the reason for this was that the extension the Student Conduct Code off campus would only come into play when learning was actually affected. He brought the Senate's attention to a statement from Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy, Chief of Police Pete Kerns, Municipal Judge Wayne Allen, and roughly two dozen University faculty who live in the near-campus neighborhood which voiced support for this amendment.
Senate President Kyr invited further discussion and recognized Professor John Bonine (Law).
Professor Bonine asked if it would be possible to refer to the main motion.
Senate President Kyr stated that they were currently discussing Professor Wilson's amendment.
Professor Bonine asked if there had been an amendment and a second.
Senate President Kyr stated that a second was still needed.A second was received and Senate President Kyr invited discussion.
Professor Bonine asked if the amendment change could be described.
Senate President Kyr clarified that the proposal had been to add the language “and living." He invited further discussion and recognized Senator Deborah Healey (American English Institute).
Senator Healey prefaced her remarks by stating that she was speaking not as a member of the Student Conduct Committee, but as someone who had thought about the root causes of sexual violence and related issues.She explained that she lived in West University, which is a neighborhood predominantly populated by students, and that she had observed among these students a pervasive “sense of the right to do whatever you want once you're off campus.”She expressed her belief that this mentality contributed to behavioral issues like sexual violence, because it led to students operating as if there were no rules off campus.She noted that extending the language within the Student Conduct Code to include the “living environment” was unlikely to elicit immediate, mass behavioral reform by students; but that it might help to instill the idea that the expectation of good conduct extends to places outside of the learning environment.
Senate President Kyr recognized Senator John Davidson (Political Science).
Senator Davidson stated that he supported the general idea that was being presented.He added that he particularly recognized the need for the University to take what efforts it could to control the energy that spills out from University into the surrounding neighborhoods, and also the need to deal with issues involving students—including sexual violence—that occur outside of campus.He stated that he was concerned about the limits of the paternalism that the University was arguably exercising.He asked the Senate to consider a hypothetical scenario in which a graduate student decides to smoke pot in their home.He noted that this would not be tolerated on campus, and that they would technically be in violation of the Conduct Code.He stated that what was being proposed was that the Student Conduct Code would follow students everywhere all the time, regardless of whether or not their actions affected the campus directly.He stated that while he was bargaining for the faculty union, the University had proposed a similar measure that would have applied to faculty; he noted that it was not well-received.He added that the faculty rejected the proposal on the grounds that once you’re off campus, you should be free to some degree.He noted that the students were mostly adults, just as the faculty were.
Mr. Weintraub stated that he appreciated Professor Davidson’s comments, and added that he wished to respond to his concerns.He expressed his belief that the phrase “adversely and significantly affects the learning and or living environment” would prevent the misapplication of disciplinary measures, since it would require that these conditions be met before the University could exercise jurisdiction over the matter.He added that mandatory jurisdiction was only exercised in those cases which involved sexual violence and assured Senator Davidson that as a Student Conduct practitioner and professional, he would not attempt to exercise jurisdiction in scenarios comparable to the one he had described.He also noted that in the majority of cases, the sanctions issued are meant to be educational.He stated that he considered himself to be part of the educational process, and noted that his objective was to help students succeed.He asserted that meeting with accused students one-on-one and giving them the opportunity to learn about the effect that their actions have on the community is a much more positive experience than being punished for a crime, fined, or in a worst-case scenario going to jail.He stated that it was right for education and asserted that it was a very important aspect of it.
Senate President Kyr invited further discussion and recognized Senator Martinez.
Senator Charles Martinez (Education Methodology) proposed a “friendly amendment” to the amendment, which would alter the language from “learning and living” to “learning and or living.”He stated that having just “and” implied that both learning and living conditions had to be affected, where the intent was to have a disruption of either be sufficient.
Senate President Kyr stated that Professor Wilson was in favor of it, and that it could be accepted as a friendly amendment as long as there was no objection.Hearing none, Senator Martinez’s revision was incorporated, and Senate President Kyr moved to end discussion on the amendment.The vote to end discussion carried, and Senate President Kyr called for a vote on the amendment, which also passed.
Senate President Kyr returned the focus to the main motion, which the Senate proceeded to end discussion on though a voice vote.Senate President Kyr recognized Senator Kassia Dellabough (PODS).
Senator Dellabough stated that she wanted to alert the Senate to the motions that had not yet been attended to, calling specific attention to the Campus Planning Motion.She urged the Senate to look closely at the motion, noting that there were things happening rapidly in terms of development that the Senate needed to pay attention to.She stated that she was not sure what could be done about this since the Senate would not reconvene until the Fall Term.
Senate President Kyr confirmed that this was the last meeting, but assured Senator Dellabough that they would be in touch very soon about the remaining motions.He returned the focus to the motion, reminding the Senate that the question had been called.He called for a voice vote, and the motion passed.
An unidentified member of the Senate proposed that another meeting be held to address the items that remained on the agenda.
Senate President Kyr stated that the Senate would consider the possibility of another meeting, and that they would be in touch soon about that.He invited those in attendance to stay for the award winners’ reception, and thanked the Senate for all of their hard work.
Senate President Kyr called the May 28, 2014 meeting of the University Senate to a close at 5:25 pm.
Minutes of the Special Campus Forum: Response to Sexual Violence May 21, 2014
Senate President Robert Kyr began the Special Campus Forum by extending his thanks to the senators and guests in attendance.He opened by remarking that the recent events on our campus had left the community shaken, and noted that the last meeting of the Senate on May 14th was a time for the President to address the Senate and the University, and then for the Senate to respond.He continued by stating that this response had come in a number of forms, and that virtually all of them had called for action initiated by the Senate and its constituency going forward.Senate President Kyr offered a reminder to those in attendance that the Senate is composed not exclusively of faculty, but rather of five constituencies: Faculty, Students, Officers of Administration, Officers of Research, and Classified Staff.He underscored the importance of remembering that the Senate represents 30,000 people, stating, “This is our university, and all of us today are working together to go forward on these very challenging issues that face us.”He went on to explain the reason for which the Special Campus Forum was called—namely, to address recent issues together in a “direct, clear, and compassionate way,” and to then effect action.He stated that there would be a meeting on May 28th in which several motions relating to these events, and similar events in the past, would be presented.He noted that the meeting would lead to a legislative process, and enumerated the various functions of the Senate and the documents granting them this authority.He invited guests of the forum to consult these documents—which are posted on the Senate website—for information relating to the actual process for action through the Senate.Senate President Kyr then described the events that led to the calling of the Special campus forum.He noted that it was a collaborative effort made by himself and Michael Dreiling that began at the May 14th meeting.Senate President Kyr stated that his suggestion to call the meeting was bolstered by a very moving statement made by Senator Michael Dreiling, which carried the dialogue forward and ultimately resulted in an agreement to hold the campus forum, and to make a motion on May 28th that would lead to greater collaboration and greater action.Senate President Kyr went on to read the entirety of Michael Dreiling's statement, citing its importance to the existence of the forum:
I want to speak to the point that President Gottfredson raised about "owning it;" and to me, this is a bigger issue, and I think we need to own it--all of us here on this campus.It's not just the administration here--I'm hearing from dear colleagues, from all corners of the campus, their deep concerns. This is a sobering moment. We are having a very real conversation here, with a very real issue that has been magnified by an incident. But this one incident isn't it—this is an ongoing issue. I mean, the Air Force is dealing with this issue, and of course every major institution in this country is dealing with this issue. I'm not interested in a resolution that in any way deflects responsibility, and I'm also not interested in a resolution that really tries to pin some specificity to this case. I'm interested in the Senate making a bold statement about we as faculty, we as a university, working together in our shared government's model to really tackle this; and that we are going to own the mistakes, own the oversights, own the slow processes, and own the failures at deliberation that we've made. We're going to own it. If we can make a resolution to that effect, and that we can be partners in addressing this sincerely--heartfully--for our students and for the future of our institution, then yes, I'm with it. So that's where I'm putting my voice on this, and it may be a simple statement that we have not done enough for this issue. We have not. And now it's time. It's time. It's a wake-up, and I think President Gottfredson also pointed this out: we can't be bystanders either in the Senate. We've got to be proactive, as with the student body.So I'll stop there.
Senate President Kyr stated that the dialogue continued, and that he then proposed the campus forum for the purpose of considering the motion and its associated issues in order to provide everyone with an opportunity to have a voice in it.He indicated to the guests of the forum that many members of the Senate and the Senate Executive Committee were present, and that the purpose of the meeting was to craft meaningful and sustainable legislation informed by the input of those in attendance. At this time, Senate President Kyr presented a draft of the motion by Senator Michael Dreiling and extended his gratitude to Michael for taking the initiative to put it forward.He explained that modifications were made to this initial draft via input from the Senate listserve and various other sources.He thanked Senate Executive Coordinator Lisa Mick Shimizu for her work coordinating the materials.He reiterated that there would be time for more participation in drafting the motion before the Senate meeting on May 28th.The amended draft read as follows:
1.1 WHEREAS, Sexual violence and sexual harassment at universities are part of a national problem and that these problems are also present at the University of Oregon; and
1.2 WHEREAS the UO must take measures to address the problem of sexual violence and the needs of survivors of sexual violence, on and off our campus; and
1.3 WHEREAS many questions remain unanswered with the alleged sexual assault on March 8-9, and the University's response to that incident; and
1.4 WHEREAS the UO's Student Conduct Code requires sustained and focused attention by students, the University Senate, and the University President as it relates to this matter, and that revisions to this code must be done through the UO Senate; and
1.5 WHEREAS the University's financial commitment to ending sexual violence and supporting survivors of sexual assault at the UO remains unspecified and without needed transparency; and
1.6 WHEREAS the University Senate acknowledges the lack of transparency regarding recent cases of sexual assault, and the lack of a university-wide initiative to fully engage all of the university community in efforts to reduce sexual violence on campus and off campus, and the limited support that has been provided to survivors of sexual violence, and acknowledges its obligation to address these problems;
2.1BE IT HEREBY MOVED that a Task Force to End Sexual Violence and Support Survivors is formed to study the strengths and limitations of the university's response to recent incidents of sexual violence, and based on those assessments, to initiate sustained, proactive changes aimed at ending sexual violence and supporting survivors of sexual violence; and
2.2 BE IT FURTHER MOVED that this Task Force is formed no later than June 6, 2014, consisting of no fewer than two elected members of the University Senate, two other members of the Senate constituencies, two additional nominees recommended by the UO-CESV, two students, and a member of the University administration, all to be appointed by the Senate President, and that the meetings of this task force shall be open to the university community except as required by privacy laws; and
2.3 BE IT FURTHER MOVED that this Task Force shall work with the University Board of Trustees, the ASUO, the University President and administration, and the Senate's constituencies to report on initial findings, and initial recommendations for action, by the second Senate meeting of Fall 2014.
Senate President Kyr reiterated that the draft presented was not a final version of legislation, but rather was intended to help frame and focus comments.He went on to invite attendees to bring up issues related to the draft, but asked people to focus as much as possible on actions that were sustainable into the future.Senate President Kyr indicated that the forum would proceed with comments from attendees who wished to address the issue, and additional speakers were invited to add their names to the speaker’s list so that everyone would have a chance to participate.
The first speaker was Carol Stabile, who introduced herself as the Director of the Center for the Study of Women in Society and a professor in the School of Journalism and Communication and the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies.Carol stated that although she wasn’t able to hear Michael Gottfredson's comments to the Senate last week, she read them and wanted to offer what she felt was an important perspective on the problems that the community is confronting.She noted that the President had dismissed the Senate’s concerns as "speculative" and "inappropriate”—a claim which she rejected.She asserted that student safety has been compromised on the UO campus, as well as many campuses around the country.She reported that one in five women will be sexually assaulted while she is at UO, and that roughly 600 of those young women currently enrolled as students have been—or will be—victims of sexual assault.She went on to say that it's disingenuous and dangerous when administrators suggest otherwise.Carol stated that efforts to address sexual violence on college campuses have been underway at UO and elsewhere for many years. She relayed her experiences dealing with sexual violence at the University of Oregon, which began shortly after she arrived:
My second autumn here, one fraternity paraded a flatbed truck of shirtless men with the words "tits" and "vag" scrawled on their torsos around campus.The next day, the word "cunt" was written on the doors of two campus buildings.A number of us wrote to the Dean of Student Affairs. We were told that they knew which fraternity was involved in "the situation," as they referred to it, and they had discussed the need to develop "new and healthy traditions."In the months following, colleagues teaching gender-related classes and students told me additional stories about fraternity culture here. There were rape rooms in specific frats that women were told to avoid, and there were safe rooms where women presumably could go to avoid being raped.In the years that followed, ten graduate students disclosed incidents of sexual assault and harassment to me. Two wound up leaving UO.
Increasingly alarmed by their accounts, Carol stated that in December 2012, she sent a letter to President Gottfredson expressing her concerns.In the letter, she relayed that she had become increasingly troubled by the University's handling of sexual assault and sexual harassment cases.The letter went on to express her observation of a pattern "that suggests deep and serious procedural problems--problems that, if not addressed, will certainly erupt at some point." She also noted that, from her perspective, senior administrators in charge of policies were "too close to the problems, or too defensive about the way we've always done things, and lack the critical perspective to deal with the problem."Carol stated that these patterns continue today.She expressed her support for President Gottfredson in his desire to move forward in addressing sexual violence on campus, but cautioned that “we're not going to move forward by identifying whistle-blowers as the problems—a pattern emerging here that verges dangerously on retaliation.We're not going to move forward by blaming faculty for problems that need to be laid at the feet of our leadership.”She stated her rejection of the notion that everyone in the community bears equal responsibility for creating a culture free from sexual harassment, violence, and intimidation.She asserted that the women and men who have been pressing the administration for change are not part of the problem.She stated that the feminists at the University have never carried out—or made excuses for— sexual violence, and thus, are not part of the problem.Instead, she asserted that they have come together and devoted their careers to creating spaces where faculty, students, and staff feel welcomed.She finished by stating:
According to President Gottfredson, this is a time when it's important for us to come together as a campus, a community, to make our university stronger, safer.But how are we to come together when the UO administration, over-rehearsed either by legal counsel or their PR people, won't even admit that there's a problem—much less look the problem in the face?We need an investigation that is fully independent of the influence of big sports or the Greek system. We need an investigation that can ask the hard questions about systemic breakdowns in our policies, procedures, and campus climate; and then we need to look the answers in the face, publicly and bravely.Anything less just isn't going to cut it.
Senate President Kyr thanked Professor Stabile and called the next speaker, Jennifer Freyd, who introduced herself as a professor in the Psychology department.
Professor Freyd stated that she has been researching sexual violence for over 20 years as part of a research program, and that her research has evolved to focus on the institutional context of sexual violence.Professor Freyd recalled that in the summer of 2010, her graduate student, Carly Smith, approached her about studying institutional betrayal, which eventually led them to studying it in the context of a university setting.Professor Freyd indicated that they found evidence of institutional betrayal using data collected from the University, and showed that it had an effect on the well-being of students.Following the publishing of her research, Professor Freyd stated that she began to receive phone calls and emails from people in the community suggesting that there was a particular problem at the University of Oregon.She recalled being initially surprised by this, believing that the University was “just sort of normal.”However, she stated that she began receiving communications to the contrary, and provided one such letter—written in September 2012 by UO Law Professor, Cheyney Ryan—to the attendees.Professor Ryan’s letter began, "Currently, the University of Oregon fails to comply with its obligations under Title IX regarding sexual harassment and its discriminatory impact on students.Attempts by faculty to get the administration to address this issue have been met with indifference, annoyance, and hostility—but mainly indifference."She explained that the letter went on to detail, at length, the failure of the University to comply with Title IX; and she enumerated particular incidents.The letter closed with Professor Ryan stating, "We cannot wait until a Penn State-type incident occurs before we take these issues seriously."Professor Freyd stated that she felt it was her duty to talk to the University about what her research had revealed about the rates of sexual assault and institutional betrayal, as well as all the things she was hearing from the community. She stated that she emailed President Gottfredson in March 2013 and asked for a meeting, which took place in May 2013.She stated that two of her graduate student collaborators—Carly Smith and Marina Rosenthal—attended the meeting with her, and that together they presented President Gottfredson with a summary of their research findings.She indicated that she also provided him with a copy of Cheyney Ryan's letter—which, she reported, he had seen already.Professor Freyd stated that she was initially heartened by the meeting, but her efforts to collaborate with the University never resulted in actual cooperation.“My sense from this was that the right words were said, but the administration was not coming through with actual actions.And I think that's exactly the pattern that others have experienced,” she said.Professor Freyd stated that she grew so concerned about the lack of response from the University that they formed a coalition to research institutional practices and behaviors.She stated that the coalition learned through rumors from students that there was a report, now known as the "Rose Report," which was an assessment of how the University is handling these issues.She expressed her disappointment that such an important report was made known to them via rumors.Professor Freyd stated that the coalition had a similarly difficult time learning about the Sexual Misconduct Journal, which was an assignment given to students who are actually found guilty of sexual misconduct. She stated that despite her frustration at not having received responses, she still placed her trust in the administration for how they were handling matters.She stated that on May 5th, she began to receive calls from the press in regards to a sexual assault case involving UO basketball players. She stated that she had not yet heard about this; but that when the news came out, she was shocked and disappointed.She stated, “We read the police report, and we tried to put together the timeline.And all those conversations we'd been having with the administration and put it all together.We were just astonished and very saddened.”Professor Freyd went on to say that the events were a betrayal to her, and that it was following a whole history and a pattern of activities that she wanted to draw the community’s attention to.She stated that contrary to what President Gottfredson stated at the previous meeting—that the University had not turned“a blind eye toward misconduct”—her research had revealed that students who had been sexually assaulted had experienced many symptoms of institutional betrayal, including: making it difficult to report the experience, responding inadequately to the experience if reported; mishandling your case if disciplinary action was requested; covering up the experience; denying your experience in some way; punishing you in some way for reporting the experience, e.g., loss of privileges or status; suggesting your experience might affect the reputation of the institution; creating an environment where you no longer felt like a valued member of the institution.She closed by expressing her relief that the Senate was working to effect change:
It is absolutely our duty—it's our duty as faculty members, when we have research that's relevant, to bring it to the administration and to this community; and it's now our duty to not forget the history that brought us here—to move forward and fix things for the future, holding that history in our hearts and in our minds.
Senate President Kyr thanked Professor Freyd and called the next speaker, Megan Burke, who introduced herself as a PhD student in the Philosophy department and an instructor for many classes in the WGS Department that focus on the issue of sexual violence.
Megan stated that prior to coming to the UO to do graduate work, she worked as a support advocate for victims of sexual and domestic violence.She stated that she was concerned about a claim made by Michael Dreiling—and also a more general claim made by the University Administration and Senate—that in moving forward, the focus would not be on the specificity of the particular case at hand.She stated that she has a problem with this approach, because specificity, particularity, and individual instances of sexual violence “matter very much.”She went on to say that moving forward in a general manner does not address the particularity of instances of sexual violence, which creates a huge problem with the neglect of specific cases.She expressed concern that the general approach would allow the people who want to confront those particular cases to be written off as making speculative claims.She closed by stating that the forum should be very careful about how the discussion is framed, because, “If we frame it generally, then we forget the history that has made this condition of our present possible.”
Senate President Kyr thanked Megan Burke and reminded the attendees that the initial draft was merely a beginning point for discussion, and that the comments presented during the forum would be integrated into the process of revising the motion.He explained that eventually there would be a sponsor for the motion, and that this individual would present it to the Senate; then, following further discussion, there would be a vote.He reiterated that all interested persons were welcome to attend the May 28th meeting, and assured those in attendance that the Senate would stay in close touch as the motion evolved.
He then called the next individual on the speaker's list, Claire Aubin.
Claire introduced herself as the PR coordinator for the ASUO Women's Center, as well as a student member of the Safer Education Campaign, and stated that she had come to the forum to introduce an additional demand made by the UO coalition that was not addressed in the current resolution: namely, the creation of a multicultural credit requirement regarding sexual inequity. Megan proceeded to read a testimony by Anna Bird, the former editor of The Siren feminist magazine, and another student member of the Safer Education Campaign:
Four years ago, I came to the University of Oregon from a small, rural town in eastern Oregon.For 18 years, I had grown up with a very different perspective on the world.My first term, I enrolled in Women and Gender Studies 101, and it changed my perspective beyond compare.I realized I had been a feminist my whole life, never having had the language to acknowledge that.From there, I went on to volunteer for the Women's Center, help plan "Take Back the Night," write for The Siren, and my perspective on the world continued to change and grow.Before I came to the University of Oregon, before I took that WGS 101 class, before I got involved with the Women's Center, I participated in rape culture.I laughed at rape jokes even though I knew they were wrong. I didn't know what a healthy and positive sex life looked like.I thought that if I put myself in an uncomfortable or unhealthy situation that it was my own fault.I didn't want to be considered a "tease."I criticized my friends for having an active sex life.Needless to say, after the first WGS class and [after] I became thoroughly involved with the Women's Center, I had to take a hard look at how my own actions were contributing to the culture around me.I had to accept that I had participated in rape culture, and I took conscious steps to change that. But I wouldn't have been able to make those changes if it hadn't been for education.I learned what consent was; I learned what consent wasn't.I learned that no matter what situation I put myself in, no one had a right to have sex with me unless I enthusiastically consented.I learned the harm rape jokes can do; the harm in not believing a survivor. I learned how to cultivate a healthy, empowering sex life, and encouraged my friends to do the same.I became an active disruptor of rape culture, and I couldn't have done that if it hadn't been for a change in perspective.I know in my heart that if more people are required to take a class like Women's and Gender Studies 101, their perspectives will change, too, for the better.
Senate President Kyr thanked Claire and noted that the proposal for the multicultural requirement was in the initial process of being considered by the Senate.He then introduced the next speaker, Senator Rick Margerum.
Senator Margerum introduced himself as a member of the University Senate and the Senate Executive Committee.He stated that he was attending the forum primarily just to listen, and expressed his appreciation of what had been shared already.In order to make the process of drafting a motion as effective as possible, he urged people to forward their ideas to the appropriate people in the Senate or the Senate Executive.He went on to express his embarrassment for the Senate that it took an incident of this nature to raise this issue to such a high degree, but urged the attendees to resist focusing on just one single incident in order to avoid losing sight of a really severe and chronic problem.He stated that he really appreciated the comment about the importance of specificity.He stated that the University Senate is a unique body that represents all sectors of the University, and that holding forums like this is what the University Senate should be doing.He stated that timeframe for the current charge and legislation was perhaps unrealistic, and urged careful deliberation when considering matters as important as these so that the end result can be as effective as possible.
Senate President Kyr reminded those in attendance that every part of the motion was up for discussion, and stated that issues with the timeframe, as well as any other concerns and input, were welcome.He reemphasized the importance of moving forward in a meaningful and sustainable way.He then called the next speaker, Carly Smith.
Carly stated that her arrival at the University of Oregon in 2010 overlapped with the arrival of the class of 2014.Reciting a statistic provided earlier in the forum by Professor Stabile, she stated that one in five women will experience sexual assault over the course of their college career.She wondered how many of the students who belonged to the class of 2014 would not be graduating this year as a consequence of sexual assault.Carly stated that in her four years at UO, she has extensively researched institutional betrayal, which she defined as institutional failure to respond effectively to sexual violence.She indicated that during her first year, she surveyed many students—most of them freshmen and sophomores—about sexual assault, institutional betrayal and psychological outcomes.She stated that her research revealed an overwhelming rate of sexual violence and institutional betrayal, and noted that reports of betrayal were associated with poor outcomes.She went on to say that the continuation of her research over the intervening years has cast light on these issues within the University and has led to changes in the way in which researchers here ask about sexual violence:
We ask people now, "Did this happen at UO?" And in these samples of freshmen and sophomore students, typically--the average age 19—10 to 20 percent of those samples have already experienced sexual violence here.30 to 40 percent already know someone who has experienced it here.We also have asked people what they do when they experience this type of institutional betrayal.What do they do?We asked them if they stay or if they go… and here's where it gets tricky: we find that about 50 percent say that they're no longer members of the institution who betrayed them.Well, for current UO students taking the survey, they've obviously not left the UO; they may have left a sorority or quit a team.You may also think, "Well 50 percent of them stay."And you're right, they do—50 percent stay.But what must they give up to stay at an institution that's betrayed them?What must they give up to stay at an institution that they no longer have reason to trust?What would it mean to try to heal from a trauma like sexual assault in this type of environment?
Carly closed by asking the attendees to consider what kinds of lessons U of O students are taking with them about institutions, and whether or not they are the ones we mean to be teaching.
Senate President Kyr thanked Carly and invited Associate Professor Krista Chronister of the Psychology Department to speak next.
Professor Chronister stated that she is a licensed psychologist in addition to being a professor in Counseling Psychology. She stated that she had experience working with student survivors at the University Counseling and Testing Center, as well as fifteen years of research experience on the topic of dating and intimate partner violence. She reiterated that this isn't a wake-up call for many of the people on campus, and that a lot attendees and people on campus have been fighting for student survivors for decades. She expressed the desire to broaden the discussion a little bit and include alcohol and substance use. She stated alcohol and substance use increases dramatically in the 16-24 age group, and that intimate partner and dating violence increases dramatically during that same short period of time. She pointed out that similar increases in assault and harassment are observed during the exact same age period.She encouraged the Senate to embrace a more comprehensive understanding of what sexual violence is about—and hence, what creating a culture of safety actually means.Professor Chronister also emphasized that prevention needs to be part of the discussion, as well as response, intervention, and creating a culture that promotes safety. She urged the Senate to capitalize on the momentum it possessed:
It's time for all of us to respond and to push forward. Those who have felt they haven't been aware of these issues, or potentially have ignored them—this is our time.And so while we respond, I hope that we can also use administrative power, faculty power, student, the union power, to move forward in a timely manner rather than getting bogged down, as was described last week during the Faculty Senate, with things like changes to the Student Conduct Code taking 11 years.
Senate President Kyr thanked Professor Chronister and invited Roseanna Ling to speak next.
Roseanna stated that she was a Senior Education Foundations major, and that she was speaking in support of the Safer Education Campaign. She expressed the belief that the University of Oregon should use the motion under consideration to implement the multicultural requirement discussed by previous speakers. She stated that doing so would serve to educate students on issues such as sexual violence, as well as create a space where students feel safe. She stated the she believed that having a mandatory course pertaining to these issues would make a huge difference in creating a more diverse and inclusive campus.
Senate President Kyr thanked Roseanna and invited Amy Jones and Caitlin Corona to speak next.
Amy stated she would be speaking for herself and Caitlin, who was not present. She introduced herself as the ASUO Vice-President, a previous member of the Senate, and a member Organization Against Sexual Assault, formerly known as the Sexual Violence Prevention Task Force. She stated the ASUO was able to secure funding for a permanent organization which will focus primarily on bystander intervention in the hopes of stopping issues of sexual violence before they happen. She expressed her observation of the presence of an issue on campus that was not limited to recent events.She stated that the rape culture that has arisen at the University of Oregon that will not be solved overnight, and that the true problem is that all the other instances of sexual violence on our campus did not trigger this response.She urged a proactive response moving forward that will stop excluding voices and work together to ensure the safety of students, faculty, and staff.She cautioned that it was unknown if the survivors of recent incidents wanted to be the figurehead moving forward. In addition, she expressed a desire for further clarification for how the proposed task force is going to be different from the various other groups currently working on the issue.She called upon the Senate to help develop the curriculum that will make our campus a safer place, and to take advantage of the experts on campus who have been working in the field for years.
Senate President Kyr thanked Amy and invited Jeremy Hedlund to speak next.
Jeremy Hedlund introduced himself as an undergraduate in Women's and Gender Studies. He stated that he thought the expansion of the multicultural requirement discussed by previous speakers was a very good idea. He relayed his mindset when he first arrived at the University, and described it as very unhealthy with regards to how sexuality works.He stated that if there had not been a sudden and swift intervention by people in his life, and the Women's and Gender Studies courses, that he would still have the mindset of a perpetrator.He stated that he did not think that is a rare for young men to suffer from this mindset as he did; and that he thought we are doing young men a disservice if we do not offer them the tools to move forward in an empowered and healthy way.He stated that he was a member of a coalition that met with President Gottfredson to demand the expansion of the multicultural requirement.He stated that the coalition was told to come to the University Senate.He stated that he was now under the impression that the coalition had to go to the Undergraduate Council, but was unsure if that was correct.Senate President Kyr stated that he was correct, and that the Undergraduate Council was part of the Senate.Jeremy continued by urging the Senate to expand the multicultural requirement as soon as possible.
Senate President Kyr thanked Jeremy and introduced Sarah Wyer as the next speaker.
Sarah expressed her concerns regarding an undercurrent within the social world which perpetuates a culture of sexual violence.Feminism, she elaborated, is widely considered to be a "dirty word."She stated that she was troubled by her fellow students not knowing what feminism is, what feminism means, that sexual violence is often blamed on the victim, that the difference between gender and sex seems to be a specialized, and that the virgin-whore false dichotomy was alive and well in our society.She stated that these issues were larger than a task force, owing to its being “rooted in lack of education, lack of awareness, and the reality of living in a hegemonic, patriarchal system that assigns socially-constructed characteristics to men and women that are then tragically taken as truth.”She asserted that education is the answer to these problems, and urged the Senate to make taking a gender studies class a general education requirement.
Senate President Kyr thanked Sarah and invited John Bonine as the next speaker.
Before Professor Bonine began, Carolyn Forell introduced herself as a professor at the Law School along with Professor Bonine.She stated that they had been working on revisions to the Student Conduct Code.She stated that their primary concern with the revision was to it easier for a sexual violence complainant to go forward.She stated that the current Student Conduct Code was definitely set up in favor of the accused, and that they were trying to balance it out.She stated that what they had drafted was only a beginning, and that she hoped it would them move forward within a year. She stated that she would like to see changes in the Student Conduct Code within the second meeting of the Senate, and invited Professor Bonine to continue the discussion.
Professor Bonine presented his proposal to make changes to the Student Conduct Code to be presented at the next Senate meeting.He stated that the current document was just the latest draft, and that significant modifications were still required.He asked how to best share the document with the attendees, and Senate President Kyr suggested that it be posted on the Senate website.Professor Bonine went on to cover the main points of the motion.The first section addressed mandatory off-campus jurisdiction of any sexual assault complaint issued by a student, regardless of where it might happen.The second section addressed equality in procedural rights, which included—among other things—that a notification be sent not just to the accused, but also to the complainant when the accused had been notified.It also provided for equal access to advisors for the complainant in a sexual assault case, and to the accused.
Professor Forell interjected that they had been in communication with Professor Merle Weiner, who suggested a domestic violence clinic would be a good place to locate a lawyer—or third-year law student supervised by a lawyer—that would help bring claims of sexual assault.
Professor Bonine added that cross-examination would be a major issue in the motion, dealing in particular with the cross-examination of the alleged victim.The motion would also allow for the alleged victim to request a formal hearing, if desired, or to instead meet directly with the director.The issue of procedural bias was addressed by proposing that students have the opportunity to request an outside hearing if bias was suspected.The statute of limitations for sexual assault cases would be extended beyond the current six month limit.Additionally, expulsion would no longer require the additional burden of proof that it currently demands
Senate President Kyr added that there would be two proposals on alterations to the Student Conduct Code considered at the next Senate meeting.
Professor Bonine elaborated that the mandatory off-campus jurisdiction and burden of proof were the changes that definitely should be considered.He continued that educational journaling would no longer be a sufficient sanction for sexual assault cases by itself.He stated that there was an included amendment stating that mediation would not be appropriate in the case of sexual assault.He went on to state that the standards in the Student Conduct Code would be clarified to address procedural issues, but that the standards themselves were otherwise sufficient.Professor Bonine then went on to explain how interested persons could interact with the motion and help to craft it moving forward.
Professor Forell reiterated that the proposed changes were intended to level the playing field for victims of sexual assault.
Professor Bonine noted that anything in the proposed code involving sexual assault would be highlighted in yellow.He went on to explain that a “Rights of the Victim” section had been added to the Student Conduct Code to complement the pre-existing rights of the accused.Professor Bonine encouraged those in attendance to interact with the document and stated that their input would be of great value.
Senate President Kyr thanked professor Bonine and Forell for their contributions in revising the Student Conduct Code within such a short timeframe.He added that it’s possible for student members of the Senate to bring forward legislation, and he encouraged students in attendance to pursue that option.At this time, he proceeded to introduce Sandy Weintraub as the next speaker.
Sandy introduced himself as the Director of Student Conduct and Community Standards in the Office of Dean of Students.He stated that it was his job to work through the Student Conduct Code to protect students: to make sure that they have the procedural rights; to make sure that there is due process; to make sure that everyone and every side of every student conduct issue was treated fairly.He wanted to make it clear that the Office of Dean of Students wanted to work with Professor Bonine, and the students, to create positive changes of the Student Conduct Code.He stated that the Student Conduct Code needs change, and that he was hopeful the process of making changes would not be as lengthy as it had been in the past. He stated that he wanted to make it very clear that his office is not against the students or the faculty on the issue of revising the Student Conduct Code. He stated the desire to work together with the Senate to make a code as good to everyone on campus as it possibly can be.He offered to meet with professors and students who are interested in the issue.He cautioned against extensive revision of sections of the Student Conduct Code without collaboration with the people whose job it is to execute the process.He stated the he wanted to work with professors and students to make sure that any changes that are made work within the processes that are in place. He stated that he wanted to be available to answer questions about the process, the way his department interacts with students who report sexual violence, and students who are accused of violations of the Student Conduct Code. He closed by reiterating that those in charge of executing the Student Conduct Code want to be a part of the process of revising it, and that he looked forward to participating.
Senate President Kyr thanked Sandy, and stated that Professor Bonine had the right to put forward that motion for a revision of the Student Conduct Code. He added that he had heard that the motion would be put forward on May 28th, and invited Bill Harbaugh as the next speaker. Bill asked only that the attendees to focus on the comments made by John Bonine, Carol Stabile, Jennifer Freyd, and Carly Smith as they think about how to move forward, and stated that he had nothing more to add.
Senate President Kyr thanked Bill and proceeded to open the discussion to the floor.First to speak was Senator Randy Sullivan.
Randy began with an apology to the students of the University of Oregon.Addressing the students, he stated, “From where I stand, it seems that we have failed you.We have not been proactive to work with you—and the administration—and give your safety the very high priority it deserves.And I apologize for that.”He expressed a desire on behalf of the Senate to create change. He continued by noting that he was both heartened by—and cynical about—what he saw going forward.“We need to have a reality check about what we are and are not capable of. We are capable of great things.We are also flawed and capable of great errors and unintended consequences.”He indicated his support for the ideas he was hearing and expressed his confidence that they would help greatly, but cautioned that an ad hoc committee or one-time changes to Student Conduct Code were not viable solutions for creating long-term institutional and societal changes.As an alternative, he expressed the desire to create a standing committee for student safety, which would look at and evaluate all the systems for student safety and regularly report back to the Senate on their efficacy.He closed by emphasizing the importance of moving forward in a manner that focused on long-term practicality rather than lofty short-term goals:
I'm talking about not what happens next year, but what happens in the next ten years—and from here on out.Make sure that you don't do in the moment these great things…they're great things, don't get me wrong…and then sink back into complacency and think we've dealt with the problem.I wish I could tell you we could do these things and everything would be all better.It will be better, but not all better.It's good steps in the right direction, but it's first steps.
Senate President Kyr noted that the forum would need to conclude by 5:00, at which time those individuals providing technical support were scheduled to leave.He then called the next speaker, Professor Ian McNeely.
Professor McNeely stated that he had spent the previous five years working on curriculum development.He indicated that in the first three of these years, he served as Chair of the Undergraduate Council—which, he explained, was the body that normally considered things like changes to the multicultural requirement—and that he had served for the past two years as Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education in the College of Arts and Sciences, which offers approximately a significant percentage of the general education requirements on campus.He went on to offer his services as a consultant on curriculum development, noting that these positions had granted him experience with both the Senate and the Administration. He also offered his suggestion that there were additional measures that could be taken that stopped short of changing the multicultural requirement.He stated that he had recently met with Lizzie Reis, head of the Women’s and Gender Studies Program, and had discussed the possibility of making a common “reader”—a book that would be assigned to all incoming freshmen—and building curriculum on that which would draw from the expertise of Professors Freyd, Stabile, and Mann.He pointed out that these changes would take time to implement, but that there were good reasons for being deliberate about changing the multicultural requirement.He noted that mandatory courses often present a series of problems, citing Writing 121 as an example:
Freshman Comp: you're supposed to take that freshman year.A lot of students don't get around to it until the end of senior year.What that means is that if we change the multicultural requirement, we're going to have a lot of people waiting to graduate and trying to get their "Sex" requirement out of the way three or four years after it would have done any good.
Professor McNeely added that he felt the responsible way to proceed would be to work through the committee: i.e., to have the Undergraduate Council formulate what is being sought in the classes, and to have the Committee on Courses carry out a variety of functions, some of which include: reviewing available courses in order to determine which ones currently serve this purpose; providing course development support in the event that new courses need to be created; and assisting in the recruitment of additional faculty that would be needed to serve the 20,000 undergraduates on this campus.He stated that while the Senate holds the power to change the rules without delay, doing so would create an adversarial relationship with the Administration.He reiterated that his experience with both the Senate and Administration had granted him perspective from both sides, and that he would be happy to act as a mediator moving forward.
At this time, Senate President Kyr called WGS graduate student, Dana Rognlie.
Dana began by indicating that she wished to speak to Professor McNeely’s remarks.She rejected the need to move forward through the committees and proposed cross-listing with the WGS Department as an alternative.She expressed her belief that the curriculum should be informed by the expertise of the individuals who do this type of work, and went on to underscore the need for adequate funding for these courses and the individuals who teach them.She noted that the GTFF was currently working without a contract, and encouraged those in the forum who did not know about the GTFF bargaining to educate themselves on it.She cited the unmet demands of the GTFF—specifically, parental leave and a living wage—as instances of institutional inequality based on sex.She expressed dissatisfaction with the arguments in favor of taking time and exercising caution with proceeding, noting that many years of work have already been invested in the issue by those experts in this field.She elaborated:
It's not like we have to reinvent the wheel, here, on how to confront rape culture.We just have to talk to the people who are actually working on this; and the time is now. This is a particular time. It's a particular moment […] a contingent moment in our campus's history.So I think that we really need to take an advantage now.We have a responsibility to take advantage of it right now, and we need to be talking to the people who do this work already.
Senate President Kyr Thanked Dana and issued an update on the forum schedule, noting that the live-streaming would end at 5:00, but the meeting had been extended to 5:30 for those who wished to stay and continue the conversation.He then called Senator Jane Cramer.
Senator Cramer stated that she would be brief, but that she wanted to further clarify what Senator Dreiling’s “much amended amendment” was about from the Senate’s point of view.She indicated, for transparency, that the Senate’s intention was to work closely with Jennifer Freyd and Carol Stabile going forward.She made it known that the Senate had noted their concerns about the objectivity of the administration, and she also expressed, on behalf of the Senate, the opinion that Professor Stabile’s and Freyd’s research is world-class.She went on to state that although the Senate has an interest in working on a course, they are also aware of the problems with mandated courses as discussed by Professor McNeely.As such, she expressed the desire to have efforts geared toward this course be separate from the resolution.In a final point, she stated that she had thoroughly reviewed John Bonine’s proposed revisions to the Student Conduct Code, and enthusiastically supported moving forward with these changes—which she described as being simple, easy to fix, and non-controversial—as soon as possible.She closed by reassuring those in attendance that the Senate was listening and was trying to respond.
Senate President Kyr explained that in addition to being discussed by the Senate, Professor Bonine’s proposed revisions had been taken to the Students’ Senate, and noted the importance of interactivity across campus as a way of opening and continuing meaningful dialogue.He reiterated that all interested persons were welcome to attend the May 28th meeting, during which these discussions would be deliberated and voted on, ultimately resulting in legislation. Senate President Kyr proceeded to invite Anna Copic to speak.
Anna introduced herself as a transfer student and a member of Greek life.As a transfer student, Anna wished to offer her perspective as to how the University differs from other schools with regard to its approach to dealing with sexual assault and dating violence.She stated that she has observed these issues being “swept under the rug” much more commonly at UO than her former university.She acknowledged that this problem is not unique to UO, but suggested, nevertheless, that perhaps it is not being dealt with in the best way.She echoed earlier speakers in her proposal of the use of education as tool for prevention.She went on to voice her concerns about the prevalence of sexual harassment at UO, noting that it occurs in many forms.She relayed an incident that had occurred earlier in the day on campus, in which there were some pastors who were speaking against women and homosexuals.Anna stated that as she was standing there observing, one of the pastors approached her and said that the way she was dressed was asking to be raped and that she probably deserved it.She stated that this comment was observed by university members—mostly students—who stuck up for her and comforted her.However, she noted that other university members, who she believed to be employees, did not make an effort to intervene.She explained that the statement was clearly audible and that she felt something could have been done about it.She stated that members of the UOPD were there, and witnessed the harassment but did nothing.She then commented on Greek life, noting that she was proud of her sorority; but she added that Greek life and other student organizations occasionally provide environments—and encourage behavior—where assault may be more likely. She stated that, unfortunately, many men and women don't even recognize their experiences as assault due to a "sweep it under the rug" mentality that the University and other institutions encourage.She relayed that she had heard numerous stories from her fellow sisters about experiences they had on their weekend that they think of as an unfortunate experience rather than something that should be brought forth to court and to the University as punishable behavior.She proposed educating students on harassing behavior, asserting a strong belief that it needs to be worked into the curriculum.She closed by reiterating that she was asking the University to educate students on harassing behavior, sexual assault, and dating violence.
Senate President Kyr next called on an unidentified member of the audience, who stated that a lot of sexual harassment is verbal and also occurs online.She noted that she had seen an article in the Daily Emerald that discussed a twitter feed regarding UO, in which people were “making shout-outs about students that they think are attractive.”She stated that while some of it was “friendly,” a lot of it crossed the line while also providing full names.She urged the Senate to consider sexual harassment through online media in addition to those already discussed.
Senate President Kyr thanked the speaker and called Helena Schlegel.
Helena introduced herself as a non-resident student and an ASUO senator, as well as a student senator on the University Senate.She stated that she was also part of the Safer Education Campaign.She wished to respond to some statements made about the curriculum requirement.She specifically referenced Professor McNeely’s comments.She stated that the problem with a freshman “reader” is that the people who wouldn't read the book are probably the same people who most likely need the education.She continued that whatever is to be implemented needs to be mandatory for all students for this reason.She stated that she reached out to the Committee on Courses, Undergraduate Council, multiple senators, and multiple faculty members, and was unable to find people who could help her work on these issues.She stated that she was getting different messages from different people in the Senate, and voiced her frustration as a student.She urged the Senate to recognize that this is a timely matter and that if it is pushed under the rug, things will never change.
Senate President Kyr commented that motions can include time limits.He then called Mary Wood.
Mary stated that she was a professor in the English Department and a member of the Coalition to End Sexual Violence at the U of O.She stated that she recommended that the task force consider that different social groups of students are affected differently by sexual assault.She noted that a Bureau of Justice Special Report that showed that one in five white women report sexual assault, while for African American women, it was just one in fifteen.She stated that LGBTQ students, students with disabilities, and international students, are particularly at risk.She closed by recommending that there be someone on the task force who is recognized to be a specialist in cultural difference, the history of racism and homophobia, and ableism.
Senate President Kyr thanked Professor Wood and called Abigail Leeder.
Abigail introduced herself as the Director of Sexual Violence Prevention and Education on campus with the Office of the Dean of Students.She stated that she felt heartened by what she had heard in terms of the commitment to do better as a whole, and that she was very interested in that.She stated that coordinating responses to cases of sexual assault on a campus with 5,000 incoming students every year would be a difficult challenge.She cautioned against infighting regarding who did what, and why it hasn’t been done better in the past.She expressed her interest in developing partnerships moving forward and her belief that there are enough passionate people on campus to come together and make this work if they avoided finger-pointing.
Senate President Kyr thanked Abigail and invited Karen Creighton to speak next.
Karen introduced herself as a faculty member in the PE and Recreation Department, and noted that prior to teaching at the University, she worked for five years at Womenspace as a Women's Advocate.She relayed a story about a faculty member who was stalked by a community member on campus.She stated that this individual “had to hire lawyers to protect herself from the University lawyers, who were telling her, basically, to shut up so the problem would go away.”Karen stated that as a former Women’s Advocate, she was horrified to hear about the current state of the Student Handbook, namely that the person who has been violated is essentially put on trial.She implored the Senate to change those parts of the handbook at the meeting next week, and stated that it would save lives.She closed by recounting an additional story in which a former student, apologizing for her inability to complete her assigned workout, revealed that she had been date raped and nearly killed.Karen reiterated the importance of the issue of sexual violence and making the changes necessary to improve lives.
At this time, Senate President Kyr invited Professor Michael Stern to speak.
Michael identified himself as a professor from the German and Scandinavian Department, and prefaced his statement with a warning that his opinion might not be popular.He stated that the case being discussed shouldn’t stand out, in a way, because the problem is—across the board—horrendous and unacceptable.He stated that he felt that there were other interests at play that negated our response as an institution.He voiced the desire to have the administration tell the community why the response was delayed, why there was money to be made on this, and why women can’t feel safe on campus.He stated that it was problematic for him that there is a relationship with money on this campus that has created a situation where the safety of our students comes second to donor interests.
Senate President Kyr thanked Professor Stern and invited Amy Krol to speak.
Amy stated that she was an undergraduate student in the International Studies and Romance Language Departments.She stated that during high school, she went to a developing nation in Latin America on a study abroad program.She recalled being told to take measures to protect herself from sexual violence, and that she was dismayed to have to take the same measures here on the UO campus.She stated that prior to attending UO, she had attended Linfield College, where there was a multicultural requirement on sexuality and sexual education.She expressed her approval of this requirement.She challenged the community to embrace learning about gender and institutional violence, sexuality, and relationships.She closed by asking those in attendance at the forum to consider having a multicultural requirement for more than just students.
Senate President Kyr thanked Amy and invited Amanda Halford to speak.
Amanda introduced herself as a 2012 undergraduate in Sociology with an emphasis on crime and deviance.She expressed discontentment that there had to be a “shock-and-awe” type of event in order to get movement on this issue.She stated that this was not a new issue: that reports of sexual assault and sexual misconduct had been going on for quite some time.She stated that prior to the inception of the UOPD, the University of Oregon Campus Security would issue responses with extreme victim blaming, such as, "Please do not walk alone. Please, if you do drink, know what you are doing.Know your surroundings,” as though drinking were an invitation to sexual assault.She stated that she supported the recommendations of others in attendance on a course requirement.She relayed how such a course had benefited her own education.She issued a recommendation to the committee constructing such a course, asking that:
[T]he material that is presented in that course…be it existing courses, or a new course…that this is not a matter of "Does this need to be shown?" or "How much warning should we provide before we show this?" but, "Why does it need to be shown?"We live in a society where shock and awe sells.Audio, film, and literature are disturbing to the point where there are no words to describe it.Topics are controversial and hard to hear, and in some cases, the trauma associated with reading or hearing these trumps the benefits of having the discussion.So when we do discuss the material that is in play, let us make sure that that message is not overshadowed by the trauma or the shock factor that is about that topic, and that we address that that message is not ignored in the material.
Senate President Kyr thanked Amanda and called on an unidentified member of the audience, who expressed that she had not read the Student Conduct Code in her 18 years associated with the University; and that when she did finally read it, she was shocked.She stated that it was clear that the Student Conduct Code needed to be rewritten, and relayed that she thought that it should be made into a Multicultural Conduct Code.
Senate President Kyr indicated that there were ten minutes remaining for comments, and invited Amy Jones, who had spoken previously, to deliver an additional remark.
Amy stated that when dealing with an issue, it was often more impactful when discussion comes from peers as opposed to faculty members.She suggested that the Senate consider a way to include students in this curriculum—whether it be sharing stories or having student teachers for certain days of the class—so that the message is also coming from peers.She closed by saying that the change needs to start from within the student body; otherwise it's not going to go anywhere.
Senate President Kyr thanked Amy and invited Carol Stabile to deliver an additional remark.
Professor Stabile urged the attendees to consider that the discussion was also about students reporting acts of harassment by faculty members.She stated that there were serious problems in delays around reporting such incidents, and that is not a Student Conduct Code issue.She reiterated that if the goal was to end sexual violence, that sexual harassment by faculty members had to be considered, as well. She also expressed the belief that there is no “magic bullet” to deal with this problem, and that lots of ideas were needed moving forward.She urged the University to be nimble in its thinking toward changing the campus culture, and also to assess the effectiveness of previous measures as the process moves forward.
Senate President Kyr thanked Carol and reminded those in attendance that five minutes remained for comments.The final speaker called was Senator Randy Sullivan.
Randy stated that as the University moved to a donor-driven funding system, concerns about the public image of the University had arisen.He rejected the notion that we should make ethical value judgments based on monetary considerations. He expressed his confidence that donors would remain loyal to the University if it were honest about its shortcomings.He closed by calling the attendees to concentrate on “doing good” so that we don’t have to worry about “looking good.”
Minutes of the UO Senate Meeting for April 9th, 2014
Prepared and submitted by Lisa Mick Shimizu, Senate Executive Coordinator
Present: John Ahlen, Monique Balbuena, Jane Cramer, Paul Dassonville, John Davidson, Howard Davis, Kassia Dellabough, Miriam Deutsch, Alexandre Dossin, Michael Dreiling, Christopher Eckerman, Robert Elliott, Jennifer Ellis, Pedro García-Caro, William Harbaugh, Qusheng Jin, Theodora Ko Thompson, Robert Kyr, David Landrum, Jun Li, Richard Margerum, Debra Merskin, Bruce Mc Gough, Jimmy Murray, Deborah Olson, Margie Paris, Ken Prehoda, Gordon Sayre, Helena Schlegel, Lisa Raleigh, Reza Rejaie, Brent Rovianek, Randy Sullivan, Bruce Tabb, Edward Teague, Arkady Vaintrob, Matthias Vogel, Peter Warnek
Absent: Liz Avalos, Richard Chartoff, Mary Ann Hyatt, Charles Martinez, Hugo Nicolas, Jerry Rosiek, Emily Wu,
Excused: Ali Emami, Deborah Healey, Huaxin Lin, Terrie Minner-Engle, Regina Psaki
1. CALL TO ORDER
Senate Vice-President Robert Kyr called the April 9th, 2014 meeting of the University of Oregon Senate to order at 3:05 pm in room 115 Lawrence Hall. Senate Vice-President Kyr explained he is taking the place of current Senate President Margie Paris, as she is ill. He explained he is permitted to do this because he is the current Senate President-Elect. Senate Vice-President Kyr commented on the large agenda of the meeting, attributing its size to the University being in a time of transition. Senate Vice-President Kyr thanked visitors and senators for attending, and asked that all senators and guests please limit their comments to “two minutes” in order to make time for the large agenda to run its course. Senate Vice-President Kyr explained that three senate meetings will be added over the course of the next academic year; one in November, one in February, and one in April. He explained that there will be fine-tuning for “our reform of the University system of service;” he explained that it is “good precautionary measure” to prepare for that. He also explained that “we will be in a process of realignment,” because there are many University Policies that refer to the OUS, and the Chancellor’s office, and because the University now has a Board of Trustees, and they will need to be realigned. Senate Vice-President Kyr explained “probably” 50 to 80 policies will go through the Senate next year. He also commented that the Senate will prepare for this process during the summer, and “be ready to go by day one.” Senate Vice-President Kyr introduced two special guests: two members of the University of Oregon Board of Trustees.
Special guest and board member Rudy Chapa introduced himself. He explained that he is a University of Oregon alumni (graduated 1981), he is originally from Indiana, came to Eugene to run track, and “fell in love” with the city of Eugene, and the University of Oregon. He went back to Indiana to get a Law Degree, and has been in business ever since. He explained he would not live anywhere else, and absolutely loves the University of Oregon.
Senate Vice-President Kyr thanked special guest Rudy Chapa for his service.
Special guest and board member Kurt Willcox introduced himself. He explained that he works in the “College of Ed” at the Baker Downtown Center. He explained that he is the employee member on the Board of Trustees. He further explained that he moved up to Eugene from New Jersey in the early 1970’s, attempted to get a History Degree, but did not quite finish it out, yet ended up getting a Master’s Degree in Labor Industrial Relations, and spent about 30 years being a Union rep and organizer in Oregon, then retired and sought a part-time job amidst his retirement, he then stated, “and here I am.”
Senate Vice-President Kyr thanked special guest Kurt Willcox for attending.
Special Guest Susan Gary introduced herself and explains that she is the faculty member of the Board of Trustees and she is also on the faculty of the University of Oregon Law School.
Senate Vice-President Robert Kyr explained that Susan Gary was one of the faculty members who presented the Senate Constitution for ratification. He then thanked her for her service on the Board.
2. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES Approval of the Minutes of the March 12th, 2014 Senate Meeting
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked if there were any corrections or comments concerning the minutes.
A speaker mentioned that he does not see the minutes posted, although yields that he was looking in the wrong place, and they are indeed posted.
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked if there were any additional comments or questions concerning the minutes. Seeing none, he asked for a motion to approve the minutes. The motion to approve the minutes was made and seconded, and passed unanimously by a voice vote.
3. UNIVERSITY UPDATE
3.1 Remarks by President Gottfredson
Senate Vice-President Kyr welcomed University of Oregon President Michael Gottfredson to the podium to give his remarks to the Senate.
President Gottfredson thanked Senate Vice-President Kyr for his standing in. He began his address by stating that the agenda was indeed full, and he planned to keep his remarks to three topics:
1)The Board of Trustees preparation to assume governance.
2)Funding for “our clusters” of excellence, faculty hires.
3)The University mission statement.
President Gottfredson remarked that the Board of Trustees had its second meeting on the University of Oregon campus at the end of March - only their second full gathering, and had a very productive meeting. He made clear that as “we near the July 1st date, we are now discovering the scope and significance of the changes that we have all made concerning the new governing board.” He remarked that “we have embarked upon a major transition for our University - unlike that of any public University now in operation.” The President remarked that July 1st 2014 is a watershed moment for the University of Oregon - one that is full of great opportunity, and plenty of hard work ahead, which will allow “us” to climb ever higher in prominence, even while we are combating the persistent decline in state support that has been seen over the last decade and a half. President Gottfredson explained that “we now have a board who are dedicated to the University of Oregon mission,” and who are knowledgeable of what we do, and keen to create resources to “do it better.” With the July 1st deadline approaching, the president explained, the Trustees discussion and actions are by necessity very substantive and very focused. He further put forth that the timeline for the board to establish policies that will enable the University to function independent of the state board of higher education is very hard to compress, requiring efficiency - as they are addressing a great volume of crucial work. President Gottfredson explained that he is very pleased with the Board of Trustees progress, and the thoroughness of which they considering matters of great importance for the University. At the last meeting of the Board of Trustees, they passed Tuition and Fee recommendations by the deadline required by the State of Oregon. It was a tight deadline, President Gottfredson explained, that unfortunately necessitated that the Board meet during spring break - a scheduling shortcoming that they will certainly try to avoid in the future. The Board of Trustees also received a series of reports including: “our planned response to the new Higher Education Coordinating Committee;” President Gottfredson explained there are initiatives designed to improve recruitment, retention, and graduation rates. Additionally, according to the President, the Board discussed the University’s proposed policy on “delegation of authority” – this policy will allow the trustees to authorize others to act on their behalf, specifically the president and the faculty – a standard practice for public boards to foster operational efficiency. The policies intended to maintain the principle delegation of practices of the State Board of Higher Education, and apply them to the new Board. President Gottfredson explained that he regrets that he was not able to get the material described in this policy out for comment and reflection in a more timely fashion. He stated that, at the meeting, President Paris, Professor John Bonine, and others, raised very important concerns that the timing of the proposed policy language did not allow sufficient time for comment by the campus community. He admitted that this was absolutely right, and the Trustees agreed that more time for input was needed - and passed the temporary policy allowing the president to act in the interim, and asked the University Senate to establish a process for collecting input on a permanent policy. “The timeline while predicated by the workload, was unfortunate, and we’ll work to do better in the future,” the president stated. The president mentioned he and the Board look forward to receiving input from the University of Oregon campus, and he encouraged “you” to participate in this process, to share “your” insight. He mentioned himself and the board had provided President Paris a side-by-side comparison of the State Board of Higher Education policies, and the proposed Board of Trustees policies detained in that discussion, and understanding that these policies have things in common. President Gottfredson remarked on the amount that is still left to be done concerning these policies, as they still have to review “literally hundreds of policies,” in which the University of Oregon has been run under for the last 90 years by the governance of the State Board of Higher Education. The President remarked that while the process has been difficult, it has also illuminated some of the great benefits of having a local Board, so that proposals such as the one being discussed can be revised and changed with much greater ease, when you have a dedicated, and local group of Trustees, which is a group of individuals focused on “this” institution of the University of Oregon, understanding this institution, its needs and its goals. President Gottfredson explained that the advantages clearly begin to resonate with our University peers, in the state of Oregon, as, he further explained, every public University in the state of Oregon is now requesting a local governing board. He further stated that all the Oregon Universities that once opposed “us” in advocating for a local governing boards, are no asking for their own. He explained that – “last week, after considerable debate and deliberation, the State Board of Higher Education granted two additional institutional boards and then two additional constitutional boards with some conditions.” President Gottfredson remarked that “we are very proud we have led the way in this transformation of the State’s governance of higher education, and we all look forward to supporting our colleagues however we can, in their new endeavors, and we’ve made that offer to all of our colleagues in providing whatever support and help that we can in their own transitions.” The president explained he remains strongly committed to the continuance and strengthening of shared governance, as does the new board – and they both welcome the campus’ input and look forward to working together in the next step of this exciting chapter for the University of Oregon governance.
President Gottfredson explained he would also like to comment on the Provost’s exciting clusters of excellence hiring initiative. He explained he found this to be truly an exciting activity. He further explained that this initiative will enable the University to hire from two to five variable new faculty members in each of several key academic areas, raising already very prominent programs to the next level - to be the very best in the country and the world. The Provost has sought feedback from the process throughout the winter, and is now accepting proposals, the president remarked. He furthermore stated that, Monday, Provost Coltrane and himself were able to announce 1 and a half million dollars of funding for the first phase of this important hiring initiative and that this recurring funding comes from the efficiencies gained through organizational changes, that were first implemented last April. At the same time, he stated, the re-energizing of “our” budget model, under the leadership of Vice-president for Finance and Administration Jamie Moffitt as well as Vice Provost for Budget and Planning Brad Shelton is enabling better alignment between our operational budget for research and institutional priorities. He explained this will allow us to operate more strategically ever-more as we go forward into the future. President Gottfredson thanked everyone for their effort. He stated that supporting the University of Oregon’s core academic mission is “our” top priority, and “we’ll” seek additional funding for the clusters of excellence initiative, other academic initiatives as well of course in our upcoming puzzle campaign, and through deliberate discussions in future budgets.
Finally, President Gottfredson said, he would like to address the University of Oregon Mission Statement – “a critical issue on our plate also.” In the near term, he explained that “we” will soon be reviewing our Mission Statement, which is a process that each of Oregon’s public University’s will undertake with their respective boards, and campuses in concert with the Higher Education Coordinating Commission, or (HECC). He explained that tomorrow he will address the HECC in advance of this process to review and revise the Mission Statement for presentation to that body by their September deadline. He explained that the University of Oregon Mission Statement was crafted almost twenty years ago, it was written approved by the campus and State Board of Higher Education in 1995, reaffirmed again in 2008. President Gottfredson said he believes the Mission Statement to be a very good statement, and that, at its core, it has not changed since the University’s founding. The President made clear that he believes it is time to take a fresh look at the language, especially in light of our new state context. “To prepare for the Board of Trustees to provide their Mission Statement to the HECC, we intend to engage in a rigorous campus process, rigorous and rapid process - under the guidance of our Provost, gathering input from staff, students, faculty, administrators, and our Board of Trustees, and everyone who would like to provide input.” The president explained that in his own view, the statement might more greatly emphasize “our” special role in the state, particularly by stressing the importance of research to the mission of the University, and how that effects education of both undergraduate and graduate students, a special role that that provides to “us,” a special role that it provides for us in the state, and “our” service to Oregonians. President Gottfredson noted that as a recent AAU statement has emphasized – research Universities are defined by their serious and pervasive commitment to research. “Research and discovery permeates everything that we do,” he stated, “from teaching and learning, to engagement with business with government,” and the broader community, and emphasizing that particular aspect of our mission and emphasizing it strongly is something that President Gottfredson has hoped to do, and to impress upon the HECC – the important and unique role, then, that the University of Oregon plays in the long-term generation and dissemination of knowledge and innovation through research. Also, he stated, it is “our” view that these priorities are not yet adequately reflected in the HECC’s mission, or the State’s Graduation Goals. President Gottfredson stated Provost Coltrane will lead the campus discussion, and thanked the Senate for having the opportunity to speak.
3.1.1 Questions and Comments with Response
3.2 RIGE Review Report from Provost Coltrane
Senate Vice-President Kyr introduces Provost Scott Coltrane to speak.
Scott Coltrane stated that he would like to start by talking about the Mission Statement review. He stated as President Gottfredson’s remarks indicate, the Higher Education Coordinating Commission’s timeline for approving the Mission Statements of all the Oregon universities has made it a hurried process. He stated the HECC is planning to adopt revised Mission Statements at a September meeting, and when he and others found this out, they shared with the Board of Trustees and all decided they needed to do a very rapid full consultation with faculty, staff, and students. He informed that a campus wide discussion will begin, and the new Board will begin reviewing the revised Mission Statement in June, allotting about two months for proposed revisions. Provost Scott Coltrane stated he will be setting up awebsite through the Provost’s office, to facilitate discussions; the website will post the current University of Oregon Mission Statement, the Mission Statements of the other Universities in Oregon, and the Mission Statements of all the other AAU publics. He informed that the current University of Oregon Mission Statement is a great deal longer than most of the others, “which is not necessarily a bad thing,” yet Provost Coltrane wants to engage the community in looking at how different Universities talk about themselves. He explained the first thing we will need to do is consult the HECC. He noted they are in power although they are not yet staffed up. Thus making it an evolving process wherein we will ask them in what form they would like to see our Mission Statement, and then negotiating with them - and our Board of Trustees will be involved in those discussion as well. He stated that, generally, Mission Statements normally provide a short “purpose statement,” also including a “vision statement” – both being very focused. Then, a set of other “value statements” are included, and also sometimes “goals” and other statements. He stated what will be required for the broader campus community is some endorsement of general ideas and concepts, and as mentioned, how do we differentiate our Mission Statement from other public State institutions because the HECC will be directing revenues to campuses based on fulfilling their Mission Statements. He stated that for this process, he will be asking for various committees to evaluate the Mission Statement options. He stated he was considering asking the Academic Council, the Undergraduate Council, the Graduate Council, and the Faculty Advisory Committee, but offered that any other faculty groups or senate groups that might desire to be included can be consulted with as well. He stated he would also be asking from Administrative Advisory Groups, including the Executive Leadership Team, the Academic leadership Team, and the Research Advisory Board. Provost Scott Coltrane confirmed that the goal of the process was to “update the Mission Statement, and somehow capture what is our essence,” which, he stated, will include, “honoring our historical legacy, aligning us with the needs of the State Higher Education, to differentiate our mission from those of other public universities in the state, and to prepare our campus to take advantage of new opportunities.” He explained that he believes what will happen is that “we” will offer up a few of the AAUs that look to be very focused, and very convincing, so that an audience might be able to decide whether they like one style over another. Provost Coltrane confirmed that rewriting the Mission Statement is a precursor to rewriting the Academic Plan, which is more than five years old. He stated this process will largely be undertaken during the next academic year, and will be discussed in some of the extra meetings that will be added in the year. He explained that he hoped this will allow senators to be more involved in the process, and that it will be a good way to refresh the Academic Plan, and to link it to some of the choices that need to be made - that can help prepare the university for the next decade. Provost Coltrane stated that as a new comprehensive capital funding campaign is launched, a vision is necessary pertaining to what “we aspire to be,” and also a concrete plan to achieve specific goals. He stated he is already in conversations with both current Senate Margie Paris and Senate President-Elect Robert Kyr about how to ensure that the senate is a central part of that process, and how to help rewrite our Academic plan next year. Yet, referring back to the Mission Statement, Coltrane explained he had been leading a series of Academic Planning exercises; he stated he will turn the next three over to the ideas inherent in re-crafting the university’s Mission Statement. He explained that the next three of these meetings will be held in the Knight Library Browsing Room:
The 1st will be held on April 23rd from noon-1pm.
The 2nd will be held on may 6th from 2-3pm.
The 3rd will be held on May 20th from 10-11am.
He explained that these meetings will happen before the Academics and Student Affairs group, a subcommittee of the board, will meet, which is to take place in late May.
Provost Coltrane then began the update on the RIGE review report. He stated the President and the Senate commissioned the RIGE Review Report roughly a year prior. Provost Coltrane explained he received the report in December, and shared it with the Vice-President for Research and Innovation, posted the report on the Provost’s website. He explained it is also available on the Senate website. Provost Coltrane explained he met in the week prior with the Research Advisory Board, and discussed with them plans to formalize their appointment structure and their nomination procedure. He explained that this group is only a year and a half old, and was formulated through the Office of Research. One of the things the report said, was that it needed to be looked at as an over-arching entity, that gave several choices of how research oversight could be organized on campus. The Provost stated he met with the Research Advisory Board, and that they are developing a nomination process that is similar, and would take nominations from Deans, Vice presidents, the Senate, in order to fill slots on the committee and give advice to the Provost and the rest of campus in how we can conduct research. He explained he will be discussing with the Research Advisory Board their ideas for establishing and evaluating research centers, because currently there are not many policies for doing that kind of review. They will be developing procedures and proposing policies on this matter, according to the Provost. He informed he is also working with Vice-President Espy and the Vice-President for Finance and Administration, and other offices on campus, to improve some of the research oversight and reporting procedures, and some controls to guard against some of the problems discovered through audits of an isolated group of research centers. Provost Coltrane explained that this work is ongoing, and that he would be very happy to come back and speak to the Senate again once they have gotten to the report writing stage of the process. He explained there seven items on the RIGE Review Report suggested to be addressed as a campus, and Provost Coltrane is happy to do that and post a written report on the Provost website. The Provost then concluded his report and left the stage.
4. NEW BUSINESS
Senate Vice-President Kyr made a joke concerning the pronouncement of the acronym RIGE, and is met with enthusiasm.
Senate Vice-President Kyr then asked the Senate to consider, through vote, moving agenda item “Open Discussion” before item “New Business,” which originally would come next in the predetermined order of the meeting’s agenda items.. The reason for this being that he would like the opportunity for discussion concerning the Ad Hoc Committee and the delegation of authority (Item 5.1), which Senate Vice-President Kyr himself will speak on briefly, as there is other information about the meeting of the committee that President Gottfredson did not address in his earlier speech. He stated if anyone wants to make comments, or have interaction concerning this important matter, the Senate could do that preceding the original item to come next - which is: “Motion (Legislation):Senate Liaison to the UO Board of Trustees.” Senate Vice-President Kyr explained that the Senate Executive Committee and President Paris believed that this would be a better order - so that the University Senate would be well informed when voting on the Item 4.1.
Senate Vice-President Kyr then asked if anyone would like to make a motion to pass this new order.
An anonymous senator makes the motion, and a second anonymous senator seconds the motion.
Senate Vice-President Kyr Calls to Question, and the motion is passed.
NOTE: Due to this vote, Senate item 5.1 now precedes Senate item 4.1.
5. OPEN DISCUSSION
5.1 Information from the Ad Hoc Committee on Delegation of Authority (Robert Kyr, Professor [Music]
Senate Vice-President Kyr began by thanking President Gottfredson and the Board of Trustees for their collaborative spirit and their cooperation over the past several weeks. He stated that the Board of Trustees acted in “absolute good faith,” explaining he had been to many board meetings, and had rarely seen a board that looked at an issue so clearly and was willing to discuss it very openly, and then come to a decision that was truly inclusive and brought the entire campus into a substantive discussion on the committee policy (the Ad Hoc Committee on Delegation of Authority) which ultimately would be considered by the Board of Trustees and they would draft their policy, discuss it, and vote on it. He then stated “we thank the board today for including us in this and look forward to more such collaborative endeavors. I think that that word [collaboration] for all of us at the University of Oregon is so important because we really look at this as our university - it belongs to all of us, and we just want to co-create it with our board in a way that really is truly representative of what we all aspire to.” He stated the process of looking at the Mission Statement and the Academic Plan is also apart of that collaborative process. He explained that the Board of Trustees really helped make this a time of great hope and optimism for all of us. Senate Vice-President Kyr then stated that the Ad Hoc Committee on Delegation of Authority was created to have the Senate take a look at the board’s policy and come back with comments by April 30th. Senate Vice-President Kyr was elected chair at the first meeting, and as of now they have had a second meeting. He explained they will ultimately have a redlined policy to present to the board along with a brief report, as well as all the information they have collected from the campus community. He explained that in the next two days, a campus-wide email would be going out asking for input, sent by Lisa Mick Shimizu the Senate Executive Coordinator. Senate Vice-President Kyr encouraged everyone to participate, explaining “the policy and some information” had already been sent out to the Senate Executive Committee, and the Committee on Committees - yet it is still important for the members of the audiences’ constituencies, Senate Vice-President Kyr asked that they please talk about this those various units, as it is very important to have the participation of senators in their various meetings and units. Senate Vice-President Kyr reinforced his encouragement for the senators to bring this up to their constituencies in their meetings, and encourage others to participate.
Senate Vice-President Kyr then opened the floor for discussion.
Professor John Bonine (Law) requests the floor. He stated he would just like to add that the committee has already begun meeting as of today (April 9th), and what they are doing is trying to make up a mark-up with bracketed suggestions within the committee, and bullet points to help stimulate the reader. He commented on the confusing nature of the document, and how some terminology in the document really must be understood in context. He explained they decided they needed to provide the reader with suggestions, which are bracketed and simply designed to get discussion going. He further explained they made bullet points under the heading “some observations by the committee,” and proceeded to comment on the legitimate subjectivity of the reader to some of these bulleted observations. He then explained that this document would be put on the web in the next few days. He explained that to model transparency and openness in their meetings, they had provided the dates and locations of all their meetings, and decided that anybody who comes is welcome to speak and will be called on by the chair.
Senate Vice-President Kyr mentioned that the meeting schedule is posted on the Senate website for the Ad Hoc Committee. Senate Vice-President Kyr explained that the function of the committee was, on one hand, to guide the campus in making comments and to provide that guidance through substantive interaction with the document, and then to go further and create a final report. Senate Vice-President Kyr thanked John Bonine for the huge amount of work he puts in to make this process possible, and for giving a presentation at the board meeting. Senate Vice-President Kyr then proceeded to thank the other members of the committee.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) explained that he attended the April 9th committee meeting and was very impressed with the thoroughness and the transparency with which the committee is “tackling this.” He explained he believes the question is in good hands. He also explained that the delegation of authority policy was not distributed to the faculty, and that he had found it on the Board of Trustees website two days before they were scheduled to vote on it, and he then had it subsequently distributed to the Senate. He explained this is how the faculty came to be involved in the delegation of authority policy process. He stated he believes without this intervention there the Board of Trustees might have gone forward with “something contentious” and not as good of a policy that will come out of this transparent process, and that he hopes the faculty will be notified of these policies before the last minute in the future, and be able to give some input. He further stated he was very happy with the Board of Trustees and how they dealt with this surprise news that the faculty had not been consulted, and they were extremely helpful and encouraging in both of the processes where the Senate could get involved in fixing the issue.
Senate Vice-President Kyr explained that the Senate really appreciates the collaboration on the part of the Board of Trustees.
Senator Kassia Dellabough (AAA) stated she was also able to attend a meeting of the Ad Hoc Committee and was indeed very impressed and inspired with the “rapid collaborative effort that all parties are taking on;” she expressed her excitement over that. She believes the Senate is headed for a “great, new era.” She expressed her hope that many campus community members will get involved in this feedback because it will really be a show of interest and participation in governance
Senate Vice-President Kyr thanked Senator Dellabough for her comment, and expressed his concurrence with her comments. Senate Vice-President Kyr asked for any other comments. Professor John Bonine wishes to speak.
Professor Bonine stated he had two more things to say. In respect to his previous comment about the helpful Ad Hoc Committee document, he explained there are two columns, and there is a mixture in both columns and a small amount of legislation in both columns. He clarified the left column is the only place where you can find the language of the proposed policy, although does include other content which is currently unbeknownst to Bonine. He further explained in the right column there are “pieces of this and pieces of that.” He goes on to state the entire policy fails to cite the legislation, in fact misstates the legislation as it assumes all power comes from the Board of Trustees when there are specific words in SB270 that provides that certain power is given by the legislature to the president and the faculty and then there is supervision by the Board. He explained that these were some of the things to be seen in the document, and that he strongly urged the audience to take a look at it. In conclusion, Professor Bonine stated, the competency of the Board of Trustees is very high, and made up of people who really love the University of Oregon, and for him to look out and see a plethora of empty chairs prompts to make two requests: firstly – for the members of the audience to attempt to make it to the next meeting. Especially since this board is especially interested in hearing from people. He urged folks in the audience to take advantage of a board so ready and willing to hear from people and give their own ideas, and to hear their ideas.
Senate Vice-President Kyr also requested that members of the audience please attend the next Board meeting, as attendees are an important part of these efforts. Senate Vice-President Kyr asked for more comments or remarks.
Guest Natalie Brenner explained she is at the meeting on behalf of the GTFF. She explained a concern the GTFF has over the topic being discussed by the Ad Hoc Committee, and asked Senate Vice-President Kyr if the Senate him personally had received a statement that had been sent on the part of the GTFF.
Senate Vice-President Kyr remarked that he did not receive a message from the GTFF or Guest Brenner but would like to speak to her after the meeting to make sure her questions are answered.
Guest Brenner stated this sounded good to her, and further inquired if the campus wide email soliciting feedback from the campus community on the delegation of authority would only be for Professors, or for other members of the community as well.
Senate Vice-President Kyr explained that he has just received word from Senate Executive Coordinator Lisa Mick Shimizu that students can be added to the mailing list. Senate Vice-President Kyr confirmed that next to speak is Kurt Willcox, a Board of Trustees member.
Kurt Willcox explained he could offer a partial answer to original questioner Natalie Brenner. He explained Richard Wagoner had sent a copy of this email to him (the original email on the part of the GTFF), and he then forwarded the email to Senate President Margie Paris, so to his knowledge, the email had been received by Senate President Margie Paris.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called on Senator John Ahlen (International Affairs) to speak.
Senator Ahlen stated he is currently serving on the Ad Hoc Committee and that the committee is seeking feedback from all campus constituencies. He asked Natalie Brenner and all others to please voice their concerns through email and the website.
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked for any additional comments, and hearing none, moved on to item 4.1 New Business.
Senate Vice-President Kyr explained that this is a motion that he put forward himself. Although the motion has been moved many times, it will finally be discussed and voted on today. Senate Vice-President Kyr asked that another Senator put forth the Motion in his place, as he is currently presiding as Senate President in lieu of current President Margie Paris’ absence.
Senator Gordon Sayre (English) moved the motion. The motion received a second. Senate Vice-President Kyr then read the text of the motion. Senate Vice-President Kyr called for discussion on the motion, but seeing none, called for a vote. The motion passed by a voice vote.
4.2 Motion (Legislation): Clarification of Senate procedures for the Election of President-elect (Vice President); Robert Kyr, Professor (Music) & UO Senate President-Elect
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that a lively discussion had taken place on this subject during the last meeting. He stated this motion is virtually a transcript of that discussion with legislative action.
Senate Vice-President Kyr suggested that the Senate move this Motion to the next Senate meeting (April 23rd). He explained that mentioned upcoming meeting was created to look at the work of the Working Groups that have been re-crafting the system of University Service. He explained that many committees will be presenting on April 23rd.
Senate Vice-President Kyr moved his motion to the next Senate meeting, and went forward with item 4.3.
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked once again for an alternative Senator to put forth the Motion on his behalf, as he is acting as Senate President.
A Senator moved the motion. The motion received a second. Senate Vice-President Kyr then read the text of the motion.
Senate Vice-President Kyr then stated he would like to give one word of background. He explained that the wording of the Motion was formulated in collaboration with Senator Deborah Olson (Special Education), and Senate Vice-President Kyr thanked her for her collegiality and collaboration. He then opened the floor for discussion on the motion.
Senate Vice-President Kyr, seeing no hands, called for a vote. The motion passed by a voice vote.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) moved the motion. The motion received a second, and Senate Vice-President Kyr read the motion text. Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that the Motion had been updated recently whilst reading the Motion.
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked Senator Harbaugh if he had any comments or additional statements to make.
Senator Harbaugh stated he did not, but would gladly answer any questions from other Senators.
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked if there were any questions from the floor.
Senator Mary Ann Hyatt (Law) stated she was curious as to if there were any positions on campus currently which require a 360 degree review after the first year of work, because that seems quite rapid to her.
Senator Harbaugh stated that currently, Senate President Margie Paris is drafting a policy in response to legislation that the Senate proposed – which will recommend rapid 360 degree reviews. “The reason for that is to provide some quick feedback to people after they have been on the job for a little bit of time, in order to see if there are any immediate issues that they might want to address in order to prove their performance,” he said.
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked if there were any further questions or comments. Seeing none, he called for a vote. The motion passed by a voice vote.
Senator Lisa Raleigh (CAS - OA Senator) moved the motion. The motion recieved a second, and Senate Vice-President Kyr read the motion text.
Senate Vice-President Kyr then asked Senator Raleigh if she would like to give any background.
Senator Raleigh stated the Motion was brought forward on behalf of the Senate Executive Committee; she stated she believed it was self-explanatory and as Senate Vice-President Kyr had pointed out during the previous motion, the sponsor of the Motion can make changes to the Motion all the way up the point of introducing a Motion on the floor, and this Motion will allow those changes to be made visual.
Senate Vice-President Kyr thanked Senator Raleigh for her comments, and asked if there were any question or comments.
Senator Randy Sullivan (Chemistry) stated he was concerned about any possible confusion over Motion section 2.5, “any changes made at the time of the motion;” he stated – after a motion has been moved any changes manifest themselves as amendments to the original motion. He stated he was confused over the motion’s intent.
Senator Raleigh stated she believed the intent is “so that when we first see it on the screen, it is redlined – so that if someone walks into the room and is prepared to introduce a Motion that has been modified that the first that we see it is redlined.”
Senator Sullivan stated he understood the intent after the explanation from Senator Raleigh.
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that a point of clarification would be that the final motion needs to be made public a few days prior, and any changes to it after that point would need to be redlined. He stated the passing of this motion will “just make it easier for the Senate to see what has been changed or added.”
Senate Vice-President Kyr then asked if there were any other questions or comments. Seeing none, he called called for a vote on the motion. The motion passed by a voice vote.
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that this policy is extensive, and has been moving through various university and Senate channels for some time. He further stated that the history goes back to former University President Richard Lariviere, and that the Senate was considering this during his administration. He further stated that at the time of former University President Lariviere’s firing, the Senate postponed it. Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that when interim University President Bob Berdahl began, he did not want to sign any new policies or any committee charges, so the Senate waited until President Gottfredson began. He further stated that they have been working on the policy since then.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) moved the motion. The motion received a second. Senate Vice-President Kyr then read the text of the motion.
Senator Dreiling asked Senate Vice-President Kyr if it was ok for him to face the Senate, and Senate Vice-President Kyr agreed that was ok. Senator Dreiling stated that he wanted to speak to the overview Senate Vice-President Kyr has outlined with regard to this policy. Senator Dreiling stated that it has been a long stretch and a lot of people have been involved over many years, including multiple presidents, and multiple Senate groups, and this latest iteration has been strikingly successful in advancing some of the best practices for academic freedom found along AAU institutions across the country. Senator Dreiling stated that this is a bold policy that covers, in an ideal scenario, a broad range of all constituencies who are involved in shared governance. He further stated that this really fits the special kind of University Senate we have here at the University of Oregon, and that is in large part what crafted a lot of the specific breakdowns. He stated that that was also the source of a glitch they had had to deal with repeatedly. Senator Dreiling stated that he wanted to speak briefly to that glitch, and asked Senators to read section 1 c. He stated that it is matters of academic freedom pertaining to matters around shared governance and policy – policy practice, policy generation, criticism, and so forth – where the larger legal context has set some questions up that have come from the Office of the General Counsel. Senator Dreiling stated that they had been running around on this particular issue in section c for quite some time. Senator Dreiling further stated that they had a draft as of the day before the Senate meeting and had reached a tentative agreement to limit that section c statement to members of the university faculty and students, but for reasons that were raised by General Counsel with regard to employees, and specifically students, they were asked to remove students from that as well. He further stated that the members of the work group – and Senator Dreiling stated that this is why the version of the policy had changed on the website two times in the last 24 hours – decided that they would not feel comfortable removing students as well as staff from those governance protections on academic speech, but they wanted to acknowledge the concerns about employee circumstances, which Professor John Bonine (Law) would address. Senator Dreiling stated that Professor Bonine has been the legal mind behind classifying and addressing the concerns and clarifications coming from the administration and General Counsel. Senator Dreiling stated that he wanted to acknowledge that it has been some good hard work to get to a robust draft, and now hopefully a product that the University of Oregon can be proud of. He further stated that he thought it was a strong policy, and he commended University President Gottfredson for working on this and having multiple conversations over many months to get the policy this far. He then gave the floor to Professor Bonine to talk about a sentence they added to hopefully resolve what they thought was the remaining difference.
Senator John Bonine (Law) stated that the process had been both exhausting and exhilarating. He asked to recognize the members of the committee: Senator John Davidson (Political Science), Senator Debra Merskin (Journalism and Communication, Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics), Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) as Chair, and Senate President Margie Paris (Law) as ex-officio, as well as members of the administration: the President, Provost, Vice Provost, General Counsel, and a host of people who have participated at various times. Professor Bonine stated that he thought this was a policy that was really terrific and something the university can not only be proud of, but should become a flagship for a lot of universities in terms of reaffirming the value and the notion that academic freedom is not only teaching, research, or public service, but that it is also shared governance. Professor Bonine stated that in a university where the Senate shares governance with a number of different constituencies, we have to find ways to guarantee that people all participate.
Professor Bonine further stated that after several meetings and exchange of drafts, focusing on section 1 c, they finally uncovered what lay at the root of a concern of some, namely that allowing speech in the context of shared governance and criticism of university policies and practices by some employees could be problematic. Professor Bonine further stated that this concern did not extend to the speech on policies and practices by faculty, or by students, except when the students were acting as employees. Professor Bonine stated that basically they were talking about the Garcetti problem, and the question was to what degree are public institutions to be treated in the same way as private corporations, where a private corporation can fire an employee for basically saying anything. Professor Bonine stated that the U.S. Supreme Court rendered a decision that suggested that there are circumstances where public institutions had to zip their lips. He further stated that the court left open the question of whether this applied to university, faculty, and so forth. Professor Bonine stated that we want to have a policy that is what we as a university believe is important as an educational community. He stated that's the concern was that there might be instances when non-faculty employees have certain obligations, so he drafted language as recently as last night in order to try to focus the issue: “The freedom of non-faculty employees to address matters under this paragraph may be limited with adequate notice by policies appropriately adopted by the University.” Professor Bonine stated that the work group agreed to include this language at his request, even though it is not the first preference of all members of the work group. Professor Bonine further stated that the language that I created would indeed allow the administration to impose restrictions on non-faculty employees, but would not allow this to happen on an ad hoc, case by case basis, but rather through a formal policy. He further stated that this is important and useful because good governance involves clear policies, not ad hoc decisions by individuals. Presumably everyone – administration, faculty, other staff, and students alike – want good governance, not arbitrary actions. Professor Bonine stated that fortunately, the University of Oregon has good procedures, adopted by the Senate and the President. All policies of the University are required to be in the Policy Library. Not all policies require Senate approval, however. The Policy on “Development and Management” of Policy Statements, approved by the University Senate and University President on December 15, 2011, says that “If the Senate Executive Committee determines that full-Senate review is not necessary, the PL Program Manager will send the Policy Statement to the President for approval.” Professor Bonine stated that the constitution states that matters that involve academic matters have to come to the Senate, but administrative issues aren’t voted on in the Senate. Rather, the policy is sent to the Senate President, who looks at it and shows it to the Senate Executive Committee and ensures that there is nothing in the Senate’s jurisdiction, then sends it back, after which it gets adopted. Professor Bonine further stated that despite the fact that not all policies go through the Senate, all policies – including those adopted by the Administration without Senate participation – do normally involve opportunities for public comment. Professor Bonine requested that the Policy on Policies flow chart be shown in the Senate, and he pointed out the areas related to public comment. He stated that he believed the language he came up with does not thrown anyone under the bus, and that it recognizes that the administration may have a valid concern to provide some restrictions in certain contexts, but it should do so through policy, and that policy should be discussed publically. In other words, not all governance and public participation has to occur through the Senate. Sometimes, notice of comment and consideration is another way of promoting the democratic ideal. Professor Bonine stated that if his suggested language is not acceptable, a motion to delete it would be in order.
Senator Dreiling clarified that while the addition of this sentence implied the policy process Professor Bonine just outlined, the absence of that sentence also means the same policy process could occur. He suggested that the inclusion of this sentence in 1 c is what resulted in the shift of the work groups position to move from “members of the university faculty and students” to “members of the university community,” a more inclusive terminology. Senator Dreiling stated that that was the internal tension in the work group as they had wrestled with ideas, but that this was the draft that was now up for the Senate to discuss, amend, or move forward.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called for further discussion on the motion.
Senator John Ahlen (Office of International Affairs – Classified Senator) stated that the Garcetti decision seems to provide some context for what the bare minimum legal protections of academic freedom for employees like him are. He questioned if the UO was better than that. Senator Ahlen stated that as non-faculty employees, the Senate should be able to look to them to speak with the same level of academic freedom either in the Senate, or to be able to speak to issues of policy and practice as anyone else. He moved to amend the motion by striking the last sentence of section 1 c [“The freedom of non-faculty employees to address matters under this paragraph may be limited with adequate notice by policies appropriately adopted by the University.”] The motion to amend received a second. Senate Vice-President Kyr called for discussion on the amendment.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) stated that his understanding was that a sentence like that was included on the insistence of the university administration. He hoped President Gottfredson or someone on his staff would speak to the reasons for wanting that in the policy.
President Gottfredson stated that Professor Bonine summarized things well. He stated that this is a recent addition to a very long and deliberate process, and that he would be happy to take this under consideration.
Senator Dreiling stated that this is the perfect context to be considering this very item regarding shared governance and policy making, and how it rests in this unique Senate, which includes students, staff, OAs, and faculty. He further stated that this is a remarkable institution and is part of the Oregon trust, and part of the legacy we will pass on through policy and our actions. Senator Dreiling further stated that the Oregon Administrative Rule that originally inspired their thinking to have a more inclusive position on this particular item - inclusive relating to protected speech in governance of non-faculty employees was the OAR 580-022-0005, which is title “Academic Freedom.” He quoted from the OAR “The Board neither attempts to control, sway, nor limit the personal opinion or expression of that opinion of any person on the faculty or otherwise on the department’s payroll.” Senator Dreiling stated that that provision in the OAR meant it was good enough for the State Board of Higher Education to have an inclusive policy providing speech protections on a wide range in various educational settings. He expressed his preference for the absence of the sentence in question, and also acknowledged the difficulty they had in coming to a solution. Senator Dreiling hoped that whatever the Senate does, it comes to a solution of a strong academic policy.
Professor Bonine stated that he would love to not have the sentence in the policy, however, he was trying to craft a sentence that might reach out to the administration in a way that would give them just enough to satisfy them and give them something. He further stated that in a way, if you eliminate this sentence, you may be expressing a lack of trust in the administration, saying you do not trust them to go through a policy process that would provide adequate protection. He further stated that if the Senate includes this sentence, you may be saying you are willing to try that process, but we do not know what is going to happen. If, with or without the sentence, there is a veto by the President, and they say they liked what the committee put forth a month ago, Professor Bonine himself wouldn’t bother participating – he would suggest bringing it back to the Senate for another vote. Professor Bonine stated that he believed this sentence bends over backwards but does not quite break, though others may disagree. He stated that it is deeply frustrating for him not to have members of the administration come and explain why they wanted language, and not to have General Counsel come to explain. Professor Bonine acknowledged that President Gottfredson was present, but stated that there was not a lot of explanation. He stated that he was frankly insulted.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) stated that he would like to speak in favor of the amendment, and that his concern with that paragraph as it was drafted at the moment was that it puts off policy making. The Senate has been trying to make this policy for quite awhile now with appropriate representation, and this bypasses that process and puts it under the control of the administration, granted with some procedures allowing for public notice and some input. Senator Davidson stated that his sense as he had been on the ad hoc committee is that everyone has genuinely good intentions for the community, but in particular the General Counsel’s preference in this area is to have maximum authority and discretion invested in the President. He further stated that a policy that would be drafted would likely reflect that, and just because it is a policy and it is ad hoc does not necessarily make it a good policy. He offered an example of a policy saying that all non-faculty staff shall comply with all supervisor directives regarding confidentiality and criticism of university policy or practices. He stated that would be a policy that would comply with this, but it would be a bad policy. Senator Davidson further stated that we thrive as a university community on having full information from everyone, including staff, and the way we are able to participate is because we have that information. We will not have that if staff are scared they can not speak their minds. He recognized the many gains in this policy, particularly in protection for faculty in academic freedom, and he stated that we put those gains at risk if we pass a policy that the President in all likelihood will not consent to. He stated that our staff constituency is important and worth us being willing to sacrifice that.
Senator Helena Schlegel (Student Senator) stated that she would like to speak in favor of the amendment. She stated that she was more concerned on the student standpoint as the only student Senator present. She stated that she was concerned that the student government was never aware of this. She stated that with regard to student staff being held to different standards, she was concerned about the discourse and the diverse realm of opinions on the student government. Senator Schlegel stated that even going back to the committee and talking more about these problems as a whole [might be a good idea], but she was worried about voting against the amendment.
Senator Randy Sullivan asked if the ASUO Executive members were non-faculty university employees. He further stated that he was hearing Senator Schlegel state that they may not be able to speak freely in their action. He further stated that it is unfortunate that the Senate was not able to work out a compromise here on the floor, because there is no one to work out a compromise with. He stated that he assumes that there are reasonable cases where we need to restrict some employees from exercising their first amendment rights, but it is fairly hypothetical, and we cannot design a compromise without that input.
President Gottfredson stated that this is an initial reading of this language, so they would like to take it under consideration and talk with the administrative team, and would be happy to do that.
Senator Sullivan clarified that was the case with or without the sentence, and President Gottfredson agreed that was the case.
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked if this was the last item that remains [in considering this policy].
President Gottfredson stated that there have been numerous discussions and a lot of movement. He stated that they were very encouraged and this is an excellent policy. President Gottfredson further stated that they made quite a number of changes, and are very enthusiastic particularly about incorporating the Garcetti matter, and the committee has had full discussions about that.
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that he thought he heard President Gottfredson say this is is still the only bone of contention to be considered. He asked the ad hoc committee if that was the same, and they indicated it was.
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that there are options – the motion can be postponed to the next meeting after voting on the amendment or it can be done now.
Senator Lisa Raleigh (CAS – OA Senator) stated that as a non-faculty employee who is participating in shared governance, she wanted to appreciate all the hard work and negotiation that has gone into this, and she stated her appreciation for the fact that people in her category of employment are a part of the Senate. Senator Raleigh stated that she felt they should be able to participate fully. She realized that this qualifier does not necessarily prevent her from speaking out, but she did feel this qualifier is written in such a way to anticipate the possibility of a policy existing that might exist regardless of whether this sentence is included or not. She further stated that she supported striking the sentence in question.
Senator Ahlen stated that he did not think non-faculty employees are asking for anything special or above and beyond protections anyone else in the rooms enjoys. He further stated that there is nothing in Garcetti that precludes us from striking this sentence. He stated that a no vote on the amendment would send a chilling affect to the ability to speak to non-faculty employees like himself both in the Senate and throughout the university.
Senator Kassia Dellabough (AAA – PODS) stated that she was impressed with the progress of the dialogue that had been happening. She stated that she believed we would continue refining this policy moving forward, and she would support the idea of continued dialogue with the groups because this issue will sustain.
Professor Bonine stated that we should get this done, and that the only time when we have been able to get down to the nitty gritty is under the press of time. He further stated that it has been hard to have meetings and hard to have schedules coincide, and finally they had a negotiation the day before the Senate meeting. He stated that if the Senate does not vote, we will be talking about this next fall. Professor Bonine hoped the Senate would not put this off. He stated that policies can be modified.
Senate Vice-President Kyr clarified that he was not supporting that, only making a procedural comment.
Senator Dreiling stated that President Gottfredson was correct that a great deal has moved forward. He commended President Gottfredson and members of his administration for moving forward on a number of critical issues. He further stated that he thought, apart from this particular sentence, this is a fantastic sentence and that he was ready to vote on getting rid of that [sentence] and moving forward with any procedural discussions that would come out of the Senate’s vote.
Senator Harbaugh stated that for him the most substantive issue was the question of shared governance. He stated that the Senate relies a lot on the input of staff and OAs, and it makes the Senate get better advice and do a better job running the university. He further stated that his concern with that sentence was that he did not see how a staff member could participate as a member of the Senate with that chilling possibility. Senator Harbaugh stated his full support for striking that sentence and then adopting the motion. He further stated that the Board should be happy that we have done this so thoroughly in a way that is consistent with how most other universities do these procedures.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called the vote on the amendment. A Senator asked for clarification. Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that the amendment is to strike the statement “The freedom of non-faculty employees to address matters under this paragraph may be limited with adequate notice by policies appropriately adopted by the University” from section 1 c.
Senate Vice-President Kyr then called for a vote on the amendment. The amendment passed unanimously by a voice vote.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called for discussion on the main motion.
Senator Arkady Vaintrob (Mathematics) asked for clarification about section 2 and the statement beginning with “Only serious violations of this policy…” He further stated that he would suggest amending this, since only the administration can violate this policy.
Professor Bonine stated that “abuse” would perhaps be clearer.
Senator Vaintrob made a motion to amend that sentence of section 2 to state “Only serious abuses of this policy – ones that rise to the level of professional misbehavior or professional incompetence – should lead to adverse consequences.”
Senate Vice-President Kyr clarified that this would replace the word “violations” with “abuses.” The amendment received a second.
Senator Debra Merskin (Journalism and Communication) asked who defines what a serious abuse is.
Professor Bonine stated the last sentence does in referring to “formal procedures” and “relevant peers.”
Senate Vice-President Kyr called for further comments or questions. Seeing none, he called for a vote on the amendment. The amendment passed unanimously by a voice vote.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called for further discussion on the main motion. Seeing none, he called for a vote on the motion. The motion passed unanimously by a voice vote.
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that the owner of the policy is Senator Gordon Sayre (English). Senator Sayre stated that he served on an ad hoc committee along with Senate President Margie Paris (Law) and Professor Tom Lininger (Law). He stated that they were delayed a couple times, but were finally able to meet with General Counsel Randy Gellar, and they worked over four or five issues which were still outstanding. He further stated that they were able to reach a compromise. Senator Sayre stated that this policy has been through many different versions, amendments and redlines, and he hoped that Senators had had a chance to read the latest version that is up for consideration at the present meeting. Senator Sayre stated that he is not a lawyer and not as experienced as his two colleagues on that ad hoc committee, but that he could attempt to answer any questions. He did not expect that Senate President Paris would be absent.
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that is was now five minute to 5:00 pm, so the Senate should probably skip to the final section of the agenda, and [consider the remaining Senate business] at the next Senate meeting – it would not be April 23rd, although that is up to Senate President Paris as Senate President, and she would confer with the Senate Executive Committee. He stated that most likely 4.7, 4.8 [originally on the agenda], and 4.9 [originally on the agenda] would go on the May 14th meeting, because the April 23rd meeting has been reserved for the Working Groups. He further stated that the Senate must consider a certain slate of legislation related to committee service.
Senator Bill Harbaugh (Economics) moved to extend the meeting in order to deal with this legislation. The motion was seconded, and Senate Vice-President Kyr called for a vote. The motion to extend the Senate meeting passed by a voice vote. Senate Vice-President Kyr asked those voting “nay” to raise their hands, and recorded five “nay” votes. Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that the meeting was extended, and though the motion didn’t say how long, he asked for a motion that would be more specific.
Senator Harbaugh stated that the motion passed and it was up to Senate Vice-President Kyr to decide how long.
Senate Vice-President Kyr thanked Senator Harbaugh for clarifying, and stated that the Senate would consider this policy, and then have not more than two minutes of comments related to the reports section, and then adjourn.
Senate Vice-President Kyr then asked if Senator Sayre gave this motion to the Senate. Senator Sayre stated that he did, and put forth the motion. The motion received a second. Senate Vice-President Kyr then read the text of the motion.
Senator Sayre stated that this draft reflects the meeting that the ad hoc committee members had with with General Counsel Randy Gellar on February 28th.
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked for comments on the motion.
Senator Harbaugh asked Senator Sayre if this had been vetted by the General Counsel, and if the Senate passed it, if President Gottfredson would sign it.
Senator Sayre stated that that was the assumption, that the meeting was very amicable, and the General Counsel indicated that he was willing to abide by this policy.
Professor John Bonine (Law) stated that he sometimes writes legal memoranda about what is going on in the university, and sends them around and it stops what is going around, such as the proposal to have the freedom of speech area confined to a small area around the EMU. He stated that he wrote a long memorandum about this. He further stated that someone could claim that he was issuing a legal opinion, so he would like ask if a Senator would be willing to propose an amendment to insert before the phrase “legal opinion” “to issue official university legal opinions,” because he certainly wanted to keep issuing things, and he does not want someone saying that he could give advice, but that what he did was issue a legal opinion. Professor Bonine further stated that he thought that the university can only say whether something is an official university opinion, and that they cannot tell faculty they cannot issue something. He further stated that you cannot even call it a legal opinion on your own if you want to, and he wanted to be able to do that.
Senator Michael Dreiling (Sociology) stated that he would like to make a motion to amend the language in this text under “Authority of the General Counsel” to read “to issue official university legal opinions.” The motion was seconded, and Senate Vice-President Kyr called for discussion on the amendment. Seeing none, he called for a vote on the amendment. The amendment passed unanimously by a voice vote.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called for discussion on the main motion.
Senator John Davidson (Political Science) stated that he used to work as a staff attorney for ASUO legal services, and they used to give advice to the ASUO on lots of matters, including various legal matters. Then for a while they were told they could not do that, and that they had to get their legal advice from General Counsel. He stated that the language on the language under the section on the right to legal advice and representation says that students and employees have the right to pay someone like legal services fees to get that kind of advice. He asked if ASUO as a body is part of the university and would have to get permission from the President and the General Counsel, or are they employees and students. He asked Senator Sayre if they were thinking about the ASUO legal services when they drafted this.
Senator Sayre stated that the independence of the ASUO from the university and its financial independence did not come up in their discussions, rather, what did come up was the fact that everyone always has the right to seek legal advice on any such matter. He further stated that the redundancy of this clause was entertained, but they believed it was important to include it, and thus it was included twice: in the preamble and in the right to representation section. Senator Sayre stated that they discussed moving it from one spot to the other, and it ended up being in both places, and that the principle is important enough to repeat.
Senator Davidson asked if it would be possible for him to make a motion to have that section on right to legal advice or representation be amended to read “every employee and student of the university and the Associated Students of the University or Oregon shall have the right…” The motion to amend received a second. Senate Vice-President Kyr called for discussion on the amendment.
Professor Bonine asked Senator Davidson if he wanted to go a little further down in that sentence and say “at the employees, students, or organization’s own expense,” because that would allow ASUO funds to be used. He suggested Senator Davidson might want to clarify that.
Senator Davidson stated that he moved those words that just got added.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called for further discussion on the amendment. Seeing none, Senate Vice-President Kyr called for a vote on the amendment. The amendment passed unanimously by a voice vote.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called for discussion on the main motion.
Senator Pedro García-Caro (Romance Languages) stated that he had a question about the General Counsel, who he believed this motion was defining for the first time in the university’s legislation. He further stated that you can find on the webpage that this is an appointee to the President. He wondered whether this might be a place to set in motion a procedure to review those appointments, or to have a way of participating in the authority that is being created. Senator García-Caro stated that in the policy statement, the authority is being defined for the first time in the history of the institution.
Senator Harbaugh stated that there is legislation to develop a policy that will require that any new General Counsel be hired with an open search process and a committee that includes a majority of faculty representation, and that that is already moving forward slowly. Senator Harbaugh further stated that there was also a question about whether the wording that was just changed also needed to be changed in the preamble.
Senator Sayre stated that because the preamble repeats two or three sentences that are also in the right to representation section, since the Senate amended the right to representation section, does it also want to amend the preamble. He stated that alternatively, one could strike that language from the preamble and be less redundant.
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that he would like to share a concern with the body – that a quorum count had been conducted and it was unsure if there was a quorum remaining. Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that he would be glad to do an official quorum count.
Professor Bonine stated that it is not necessary unless someone calls for it. If no one calls for it, the Senate can vote.
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that business would proceed unless someone called for a quorum count.
Senate Parliamentarian Paul Simonds agreed this was the case.
Senator Sayre then proposed an amended to the motion to strike the selected passage from the preamble so the section under the right to seek representation would remain and be definitive. The motion to amend received a second. Senate Vice-President Kyr called for discussion on the motion to amend. Seeing none, he called for a vote. The motion to amend passed unanimously by a voice vote.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called for further discussion on the main motion.
Senator Randy Sullivan (Chemistry) stated that the Senate must stay within the limits of the fact that this is a legal services policy, and that personnel issues dealing with General Counsel should be dealt with carefully and separately, because it is very important that General Counsel is accountable to the President.
Senate Vice-President Kyr clarified that Senator Sullivan was not proposing an amendment, just making a comment. Senator Sullivan agreed.
Senate Vice-President Kyr called for further discussion on the motion. Seeing none, he called for a vote on the motion. The motion passed unanimously by a voice vote.
6.1 Report on tenth-year committee review and April 23rd University Senate meetings; Robert Kyr, Professor (Music) and UO Senate President-Elect
Senate Vice-President Kyr reminded the Senate that April 23rd is an important Senate meeting to discuss a large slate of work that has been done by the Working Groups on committees, so the charges and responsibilities can become part of the Senate outreach effort for people to serve on these very committees. Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that full attendance at that meeting was requested.
6.2 Spring Term Elections and Appointments Process; Margie Paris, Professor (Law) and UO Senate President
Senate Vice-President Kyr asked Senate Executive Coordinator Lisa Mick Shimizu to comment on the outreach which is related to community service on elected and appointed committees, and Senate elections.
Senate Executive Coordinator Mick Shimizu stated that either later that week or early the next week, an email would go out asking the campus to sign up for appointed committees, and also to run for election for elected committees and the University Senate. She further stated that that process would be completed in about one month, including a two-week time period for elections. She further stated that she was hosting a “Service Interest Open House” this year for anyone who is interested in university service or wants to ask questions and get more information. That event would be held on Friday the 18th from 2:00 – 4:00 pm. She further stated that that email would be going out to everyone soon.
A Senator asked if the event would be held on April 18th. Senate Executive Coordinator Mick Shimizu confirmed that was the case.
Senate Vice-President Kyr stated that he would like to acknowledge Senate Executive Coordinator Mick Shimizu for her work as Senate Executive Coordinator.
7. ANNOUNCEMENTS AND COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE FLOOR