Welcome to the new academic year and the Senate’s new website.
The Senate’s first meeting will be 3-5PM Wednesday October 5th, and we will meet every two weeks for fall quarter. Our normal meeting place will be in the EMU’s new Crater Lake Room, though the place for our first meeting is TBA.
The website is the work of Senate VP Chris Sinclair, Senate Executive Coordinator Betina Lynn, and Senate Program Assistant Kurt Wilcox. Past websites are archived here. We have designed the new website to increase transparency by making it easier to see what the Senate and our committees are doing, and to increase communication by adding blog comments that will allow for input and discussion by faculty, staff, OA’s, and students. It’s a work in progress and we welcome input – please try adding your suggestions about the website here.
The UO Senate has constitutional responsibility for academic matters, which derives from the Oregon legislation that chartered the University in 1853, as reaffirmed by President Lariviere in UO’s 2011 constitution, and more recently by President Schill. As Senate President I’m committed to working with the UO administration and the UO community to focus the Senate’s energy on improving academic excellence at UO.
To that end the Senate oversees the work of an extensive system of committees. This year I am hoping we can simplify some of this system, revise some Senate by-laws to make the Senate’s work proceed more smoothly, and better coordinate the work the Senate and its committees is doing with the system of advisory groups that the administration has set up outside the Senate.
In addition to the usual work of approving new courses and programs and hashing through the revision of still more university policies – we’re hoping fewer than last year! – I want to begin discussions about important academic matters such as potential changes to our general education requirements, and our strategy and policies for on-line and hybrid courses.
This year UO is revising its responsibility centered budget model, which has had and will have significant academic consequences. I am working to ensure that the Senate, working through the Senate Budget Committee, is fully consulted on these changes.
I welcome other suggestions for academic matters that the Senate should take up. You can add these as comments to this post, or reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org (this is a new email address that will pass to future presidents and increase continuity) or at email@example.com.