Chair’s Report for November 28, 2000


Senate update

1.        Important links to agendas, minutes, Chair's Reports and other sites of interest are available
on the Senate web site:

2.        During debates, Senators may speak only twice to any motion or amendment. Each speaking term is limited to 10 minutes. The Chair will add names of those wishing to speak to a speaker's list upon recognition.


Open Forum Items from Senate Executive Committee Meeting minutes

1.        Chair Harrison noted despite discussion of problem at open forum during meeting of this committee last December, and action by administration, course availability remains a major problem during this registration period

         More seats in 100-200 level courses were available at beginning of registration this semester than last spring

         Unfortunately also more freshmen students to register

         As liberal arts institution, pride ourselves of giving students chance to explore various disciplines

         Mostly impossible for freshmen and often sophomores because of limited course availability

         Laundry list presented of required or exploratory courses closed with 465 freshmen yet to register

         Advisers now consider finding courses that count for something (anything) a success; soon will just be trying to find 12 credits to maintain full-time status for students

         Response to issue from committee and guests

         Problem very complex

         Backlog of juniors and seniors unable to get into 100- and 200-level classes as freshman now filling many seats

         Lack of large classroom space due to remodeling in Phillips Hall exacerbates problem

         Structure and complexity of baccalaureate degree, particularly GE requirements, contribute

         Position control does not allow increasing FTE, even if have money in hand

         Difficult to plan

         No pre-registration to gauge need

         Student flexibility to move in and out of classes at will

         No cost to register for many courses when intent is to drop some later

         Classes generally drop to desirable size a few weeks after classes begin

         Some disciplines do try to manage problem by restricting registration either by major or by class status

         Does not improve overall problem

         Does not work in courses out of departmental control

         Influx of people in nursing participating in four-year contract

         Committed to providing classes for them

         Definitely a retention problem

         Students begin looking for different school where can get courses they want 

         Taking classes not interested in can also affect GPA

         Some students in third semester on campus cannot get into introductory course in major

         Because of limited FTE flexibility, only solution is internal

         Overloads or increased class size

         Does nothing for quality and motto of excellence

         Although is a problem, seems serving 95% of population well

         Others did not concur with that assessment

         Do not believe evidence anecdotal; most freshmen affected

         Also creates climate of fear in which have to fight for classes

         Very negative impact on educational experience

         Negative word-of-mouth advertising

         Admitting students to university implies availability of resources to take classes

         Many schools able to supply sufficient courses for students

         Part-time hires count as FTE; overloads do not

         Can have money, but if FTE unavailable, cannot hire

         Not always pool of people with PhD’s in Eau Claire to hire

         Have to look at baccalaureate degree

         Proud of integrity of our program and quality of education here

         Need to balance against course availability

         Possibility that some of the students should not be here

         Maybe should be helping them to go somewhere with better fit

         What currently seeing not due to change in enrollment targets

         Next year to decrease by 50 freshmen

         Four recently-formed working groups looking at all aspects of problem


Other Items from Senate Executive Committee Meetings

1.        Certificate Programs

         Does committee see need to put philosophical discussion of certificate programs on future Senate agenda since discussion in Senate cut short?

         Was university-wide discussion prior to becoming Center of Excellence for Student/Faculty Research Collaboration

         Feel discussion now moot point - decision made when passed guidelines for those programs

         University Planning Committee now reviewing mission

         Will eventually come to University Senate

         May help in liberal arts vs. market-driven debate

         Indicates where to use resources

         Extensive APC discussion mirrored on floor of Senate

         Must place trust in departments to define certificates

         Most Senators understood approval of guidelines de facto approved existence of credit-bearing certificate programs on campus

         See these certificates as part of Wisconsin Idea

2.    Solicitation on Campus

         Since discussion on issue postponed due to short Senate meeting, does committee wish to bring forward motion on whole concept of university endorsed/sponsored solicitation, or simply see if motion comes forward from floor?

         Lot of constituents talking about this issue

         No real authority to make decision, but can pass resolution to expressing position of University Senate

         Must be very careful of wording if extending position beyond scope of Boy Scouts and discrimination on basis of sexual orientation

         Concern over message sending to community if pull endorsement of umbrella organizations

         Especially at time university looking for community support

         University member of greater community; constantly raising funds

         PR problem would be unfortunate

         Believe United Way will change for next year regardless of what done here

         Believe university and Senate have more significant issues to deal with at this time

         Individuals on campus feeling strongly can fight own battles - not pledge to United Way or contact United Way personally with objections

         Still interesting that this issue struck chord and generated response on campus

         Feel important as educational community that university take leadership role on discrimination issue

         Vice Chancellor Soll indicated level of giving at university this year

         Up slightly in dollar amount

         Down slightly in number of individuals

         Neither campaign nor data complete

         United Way appropriations not yet made for next year

         Members of United Way Board of Directors visit local agencies and recommend allocations in June


Items discussed with the Senate Chair

1.        Student Senate Resolution 44-R-20 in support of Creating a Campus Media Advisory Committee to enhance, enrich, promote, and maintain student opportunities through campus media.

2.        Student Senate Resolution 44-R-23 in support of Service in the U.S. Armed Forces and Civilian Services Corps meeting the Service Learning Requirement. DEFEATED 12 aye –16 nay –1 abstain after 75 minutes of debate. Discussion:

         Should not set a double standard by allowing one particular group to automatically count experiences as SL while others with experiences prior to University life cannot count their experiences. Vets can already go to an advisor and process a waiver.

         Need to consider carefully why certain individuals get exemption. Almost everyone can come up with 30 hours of experience meeting the criteria before coming to the university.

         Is the Armed Service experience any more valid than experiences of others here at the U? No. Believe everyone should have some SL experiences while here at the U. Encourage people not to support this resolution – feel better ways to address this.

         Are already allowing groups besides military groups to get SL credit already. There are channels already for vets to use – but must submit the paperwork while at U.

         Here we are asking to allow past and present groups to be allowed to receive SL recognition without possibility of their request for experience to count as SL being turned down.

         When talking SL, we are talking about help to the community – feel they [the vets] have already done this. If opposed this is just adding another 30 hours on.

         Is a specific problem being addressed? Yes, the students need to take a stand before it goes to the Univ. Senate.

         What does this solve? Would eliminate the inconvenience and paperwork for students who have served.

         Agree military service is admirable, but don’t think system should be streamlined just for certain groups doing SL through a particular method. Doesn’t address problem of SL as a whole.

         SL is not required at most public Universities. As a public U, we should stand behind our public servants.

         Really don’t agree with SL. Think it is a forced internship. Can obtain college credit for courses in high school, why can’t people go to the military and get college credit for something they have done.

         On what criteria are we basing the distinction of military and national organization vs. local organization? See piece of legislation trying to repair something  - like putting a band-aid over a major wound.

         Maybe want to restructure SL as a whole! Try to create a policy consistent with itself rather than using a band-aid to fix a problem.

         This legislation is discriminatory because disabled students cannot take part in military service nor can lesbian, gays, and bisexuals openly serve in the military. Unwise to have an opportunity for only some.

         Request for definition of “service” organization – no one could provide definition.

         It is clear that persons taking part in these military service options have put in great thought about serving – not done on a whim.

         Service in the armed forces is tremendous. Problem is with experience being before college.

         If I spent two years working at a soup kitchen prior to University work, why should I be required to fill out paperwork to have my experiences validated while those in military service are just granted SL credit without validation required? To me that is discriminatory. If we are going to do this, we need clear cut guidelines. If this passes at the University Senate and is implemented, I think it is discriminatory.

         Don’t feel that this legislation says that military experience is any better, it just makes it easier [to get SL credit] with this legislation.

         In another U, I could get 4 credits for Kinesiology for vet experience. Don’t see where the vets ask for very much – not a big deal. These guys have given much for their country. Other universities have given lee ways to the vets. We don’t do that here. How many of you are on 24/7 duty and have been called away at a moments notice? I have. It never ends with military service – can be called away to age 35. Many universities recognize the military and give the guys a benefit. People here are trying to read more into this legislation than there really is. Feel the vets should be given the benefit.

         The big deal is we are establishing a two-tier system. In terms of breaks, etc. – we do give breaks [for Physical Activity credit] for those having served 6 months. Also members of the military are compensated and have access to financial aid packages while here.

         We have a choice – we can pass this and then next week we will hear from a plethora of individuals who have had other prior experiences.

         We are looking at legislation that says we support nationally recognized service organizations – but we can’t define them!

         We need to address the problem. We need to get active and address the issue [of SL] as a whole.

         We are debating policy within service learning, not the merits of service learning.

         This resolution would not affect people currently in the armed forces.

         Everyone regardless of who they are can do 30 hours in 4 years. That is only 8 hours per year.

         Students who have done this prior to enrollment can petition to have it count.

         This resolution allows the Director or SL to decide what is SL. Feel the Director can also decide what are service organizations. This allows military service to be pre-determined as service learning.

         Key issue is the time spent during the university experience. Many have done a lot in high school. We grow continually. Issue is that one should do SL while at the University and relate it to the knowledge gained while at the U.

         Completely respect work by military, but this is a two-tier system. This discriminates by saying certain people will have met SL while others must do something different.

         What is ‘service’? Don’t know everything done in Peace Corp, etc. – not everyone knows everything that is involved.

         If we pass this we are giving University Senate and the administration a vague idea of what service is – we are looking at a very vague concept of what a ‘nationally recognized service corp’ is. Frightening that we are giving the reins over to administration and University Senate to decide for us.

         Not saying military can’t get credit for it, just say must go through same paperwork process as everyone else.

         This legislation is not discriminatory – LGBT can use civil service corps.

         We are not waiving paperwork – we are just expediting it. We are making the decision – saying the office of SL will not have the opportunity to turn a request down from the military. We are saying the work will be accepted. Has been said will be open to the interpretation of the SL director – all our requests now are open to the Director’s interpretation [of the published SL guidelines].

         In response to giving breaks – is not a value judgment whether or not they deserve it, but if they fulfilled the requirements. We give AP credit for HS work – analogous to using armed service credit for Kins.

         Director of SL has stated that all individuals making requests to have military service be accepted have been approved.

         Why are Americorps and Peace Corps included as examples in the legislation when both require a college degree for participation? To allow this legislation to be consistent with that coming before the Univ. Senate.

         See real reason for this legislation is to expedite the system for a minority of students. Should develop legislation to benefit majority of students, not a minority.

         We have had specific questions about definitions in the language of this legislation, but cannot answer them.

         This gives too much control to administration.

         Problem of SL is a lot bigger than this. This legislation with undefined terms muddles the water.

         I think if this legislation helps any students it is good.

         Can’t be that much paperwork involved.

         Important we are here to help all students – minority or majority.