Faculty Senate Minutes January 2020

Senators present:  Jennifer Anderson, Chuck Bultena, Dave Carlston, Sarah Cobb, Eduardo Colmenares, Catherine Gaharan, Nathan Jun, Attapol Kuanliang, Marcos Lopez, Matthew Luttrell, Stacia Miller, Jonathan Quam, Vicki Sanders (proxy for Rodney Fisher), John Schulze, Beverly Stiles, Lynette Watts, Bradley Wilson


  • Kristin Garrison (Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs)

  • Keith Lamb (Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management)

  • Ruby Garrett (Staff Senate Representative)

Call to order: 3:01 p.m.


The minutes and agenda were approved.



1. Sexual Misconduct and Interpersonal Violence Handbook—Dr. Keith Lamb

Senator Wilson moved to accept the policy; Senator Lopez seconded.
Vice President Lamb stated that Rachel Fornof is still consulting with the university and is working to develop a summary and flow chart to give guidance for what and how to follow the policy.
The policy has been amended to allow for confidentiality of the health center and they psychology clinic.
Related training will be available online. In-person training will be available, probably in March, to those interested.
A senator asked how much the online training would cost the university. Vice President Lamb stated that it would cost $3 to $6 per employee for roughly 600 employees.
A senator suggested that a syllabus statement should be created informing students about mandatory reporting.
The motion to approve the policy passed.

2. First Year Experience—Dr. Kristen Garrison

Dr. Garrison introduced a plan to revise the way First-Year Experience has been implemented.
She stated that freshman students in a common core course will be assigned to a section of a zero-credit freshman seminar with student, staff, and faculty mentors. There is a foundational curriculum for the seminar, which aims to deliver needed material at the most relevant time.
Dr. Garrison explained that the paired-course model for learning communities has been well-supported by faculties but has been difficult to make available to all target students. Goals of the new model include having a seat for every freshman in Fall 2021, as well as involving a larger number of interested faculty with a reduced time commitment.
Peer mentors will be paid. Faculty and staff mentors will spend no more than ten hours a semester, so they will be asked to volunteer.
The seminar will be graded only as credit or no credit. Faculty instructors in the paired core course might choose to offer around 5% of the course grade for full participation in the seminar, but that is not mandatory.
Some senators expressed concerns about the model, including whether enough interested faculty would volunteer; complexity of scheduling; increase in faculty workload.
Senators asked questions about which students would take the seminar. Transfer students with a small number of hours and freshman entering with dual credit will take the seminar, since its goal is to prepare students for the experience of being in college. The present plan is that athletes will not take the seminar, though if it is successful, that could be added later. The first-year experience will hopefully always be completed in a student’s first semester.
A senator asked whether Academic Council had approved this plan. Senator Lopez stated that they had approved creation of the seminar course.
Dr. Garrison invited faculty to contact her with additional comments or questions, as well as if they were interested in participating.

3. Policy on Policies, Shared Governance Policy—Dr. David Carlston

Dr. Carlston stated that Administrative Council discussed the proposed Policy on Policies and Shared Governance Policy. A small university-wide committee will be formed to
consider these policies. The committee will include the president of the Student Government Association; chairs of Faculty Senate and Staff Senate; General Counsel Barry Macha; Representatives of the six divisions; and Internal Audit Executive Leigh Kidwell.
Senator Carlston has explained to the Administrative Counsel that faculty concerns with the current drafts include the confusing process of reviews; the ability of any one person to change university policy; and lack of a collaborative drafting process for policies that will affect multiple parts of campus.
Senator Carlston acknowledged the difficulty of balancing thoroughness of review with speed of approval process.

4. Motion of Appreciation Re: Electronic Processes—Dr. David Carlston

Senator Carlston moved to approve a resolution thanking the Registrar’s office for its efforts in moving towards paperless processed. The motion passed.

Committee and Other Reports:
  1. Administrative Council (Dr. Carlston): Senator Carlston stated that the Administrative Council discussed the Policy on Policies and the Shared Governance Policy.
  2. Academic Council (Dr. Lopez): Senator Lopez stated that the Academic Council had seen the Marketable Skills and First-Year Experience documents that have also been shared with the Faculty Senate. The West College of Education has changed many of its Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies degrees to Bachelor of Science in Education degrees. The Council also approved a Masters of Professional Studies degree plan.
  3. Board of Regents (Dr. Carlson): None.
  4. Budget Oversight Committee (Dr. Stiles): No report
  5. Other active committees: No report.
  6. Financial Report (Dr. Anderson): Dr. Anderson stated that the only expense this month was the plaque for the faculty award. The Texas Council of Faculty Senates meets February 21-22 and the senate has funds for someone to attend.



  • None



  • Senators expressed disappointment that new Security Awareness Training and Title IX training had been announced midyear and not included in the training list distributed in the fall. A senator stated that the laws requiring new training were passed before the fall semester and that therefore these additional trainings could have been foreseen and included in the schedule, even if they were not yet available.


Sarah Cobb, Faculty Senate Secretary

Dave Carlston, Faculty Senate Chair


Next Meetings:

  • The next Executive Committee meeting with be at 3:30 p.m. Feb. 18 in the Mass Communication Conference Room.
  • The next Faculty Senate meeting will be held in the Wichita Falls Museum of Art at 3 p.m. on Feb. 20.