The following statement is published in accordance
with the Senate Rules. Among other purposes, the publication of SEC actions
is intended to stimulate discussion among the constituencies and their representatives.
Please communicate your comments to Senate Chair Vivian Seltzer or Executive
Assistant Carolyn Burdon, Box 12 College Hall/6303, 898-6943 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Actions Taken by the Senate Executive
Wednesday, December 10, 1997
1. Items from the Chair's Report.
a. Martin Pring
(physiology/medicine), the Senate Nominating Committee's candidate for Secretary-elect,
has been declared elected.
was drawn to the chair's December 9, 1997, Almanac column, written
at the request of SEC, providing further information on the continuing discussion
on intellectual property.
University Council meeting on the outsourcing of Facilities Management to
Trammell Crow was well run and a real moment in University history. Graduate-professional
students petitioned for and organized the special meeting. It was noted
that the Trustees received the proposal from Council to suspend plans for
the outsourcing. All Council constituencies have submitted their appointees
to the Special Committee on Consultation that was called for by resolution
at the meeting. The com-mittee chair is to be appointed upon agreement of
the Council Steering Chair and the President. Work of the committee is to
be completed in April 1998.
Exit Questionnaire pilot program has begun and some questionnaires have
already been returned to the Faculty Senate Office where all records will
be kept in confidence. The Committee on the Faculty will analyze the returns,
and the questionnaire will be improved per pilot study findings.
e. Cost Containment
Subcommittee of the Senate Committee on Administration has been gathering
data and plans to report to SEC in February. Faculty members are Louis Girifalco
(materials science & engineering), Abba Krieger (statistics) and Solomon
Pollack (bioengineering). This subcommittee also comprises the faculty membership
on the University Committee on Cost Containment which recently held its
first meeting of the year. Administration members are John Fry (executive
vice president and committee chair), Barbara Lowery (associate provost),
Mike Masch (executive director budget and management analysis), Lisa Prasad
(executive director office of the executive vice president), and Thomas
Stump (executive director budget and administration SEAS).
f. A joint
report will be prepared this year, rather than individual reports, by the
Senate Committees on Administration, Faculty, and Students and Educational
Policy and submitted to the administration for response.
g. A motion
was introduced as an expression of concern about statements against a faculty
member in connection with a student-athlete's eligibility. SEC had an extended
discussion that focused on a variety of issues: should the obvious be expressed;
freedom of speech was at issue; primacy of the academic mission; damaging
impact of erroneous claims made in the press; and, breach of the Buckley
law on privacy of student records. Since the report of the Provost's review
committee had not yet been issued, the motion was tabled.
f. As recommended
at the last SEC meeting two Faculty Senate liaisons to the Faculty Club
Board of Directors have been appointed, Gary Hatfield and John Keene.
2. Academic Planning and Budget Committee and
Capital Council. Past Faculty Senate Chair
Peter Kuriloff reported that during the last several weeks the committee
met to discuss the following issues: health care benefits, multi-year budgeting,
review of the Annenberg Center, long-range strategy for development and
alumni relations, review of the Institute of Contemporary Art, the School
of Social Work's external re-view, and the 21st Century house system.
There was no report on Capital Council.
Professor Kuriloff expressed concern about the
absence of genuine consultation in the committee, and that presentations
of decisions are made at each meeting with no prior discussion with this
committee. He said that in the past, issues were brought to the committee
before decisions were made.
3. Informal discussion with the President. A SEC member, noting strong faculty interest, asked how
the University might encourage entrepreneurial business efforts adjacent
to the University. President Rodin said vigorous efforts are being made
to take an integrated approach and create an eclectic array of shops throughout
the campus area including startup merchants, crafts, funky and upscale businesses.
The President believes that a large successful bookstore will attract and
sustain small bookstores. She also said the University is working towards
enrolling an increasing number of merchants on the PennCard.
Another SEC member expressed faculty concern regarding
the growth and possible instability of the Penn medical complex, citing
the rapid growth and recently announced major cutback of the Allegheny health
system and the HMO that got into trouble. The President stated that the
health care environment in Philadelphia has changed considerably in the
last year. Considerable energy will be exerted in restraining future growth
and holding back costs. Regarding concerns about proliferation of many kinds
of faculty in the health system and ensuring standing faculty rights and
privileges, the President deferred to the Deputy Provost and Associate Provost,
who are looking into these matters as are the Senate Committee on the Faculty
and the Senate Committee on Students and Educational Policy. Responding
to a question on the effect on the University of the Penn Health System
master trust indenture, the President replied the health system does its
own bond structure investment separate from the University. President Rodin
further stated that if there were vast deficits in the health system it
would effect the University's bond rating. She had recently met with Moody's
and they are neither concerned about the health system's bond rating nor
President Rodin explained that the new provost
will be a key player in strategic planning and that the search committee
for a new provost would be asked to be mindful to find a strong provost.
In response to a question on whether an internal or external candidate would
be sought, the President said she will be agnostic.
A question was raised about the structure and strength
of the position of provost. A SEC member pointed out that most of the Provost's
budget is tied up in entitlements and the Senate had recommended that savings
from reengineering of the University be shifted into the Provost's Office.
President Rodin stated that incremental changes in resources are needed
in order to provide an opportunity pool for the Provost and this will be
Regarding the appointment of an SAS dean, the President
expects to make an appointment soon.
4. Report from Faculty Liaisons to Trustee Committees. Faculty liaisons to the Trustee Committee on External
Affairs, Ted Hershberg and Rebecca Maynard, and faculty liaisons to the
Trustee Committee on Student Affairs, Helen Davies and James Laing, described
the recent trustee committee meetings they attended.
5. Senate Nominating Committee Chair. Larry Gross was elected committee chair by acclamation.
6. Senate Committee on Committees. Nominations were made and a ballot was circulated for seven
members to be elected. The Senate Chair and Chair-elect serve ex officio.
Senate Chair-elect John Keene was elected committee chair.
7. Informal discussion with the Provost. In response to a question from a SEC member Provost Chodorow
expressed his views on the major strengths and weaknesses of Penn. He compared
the culture of Penn to that of the University of California. Penn faculty
have more personal freedom; at UC the Faculty Senate has more say over the
lives of the faculty. The Provost stated that UC faculty salaries are public
and this openness did not appear to generate expressions of anger. Faculty
at UC receive merit increases only after a rigorous review.
On behalf of the faculty, the Senate Chair thanked
the Provost for his service to the University and wished him luck.
SEC gave Provost Chodorow an extended round of
8. University Council Committee on Committees.
SEC voted on nominees for the five faculty
members to represent the Faculty Senate on the Council Committee. The Faculty
Senate Chair-elect serves as a voting ex officio member.
9. Criteria for New Provost. Several criteria were raised during an extended discussion
on criteria for the search committee to bear in mind. The majority of SEC
expressed that a Provost from inside the University is a great plus. The
individual should be loyal to Penn and the academic mission of Penn should
be primary. The Provost should: be a scholar; have the ability to exert
academic leadership; be a person with vision; be a listener, willing to
consult; be an able administrator but respect academic rather than corporate
initiatives; be familiar with the contemporary university scene; but first
and foremost keep the model for improving Penn as Penn rather than other
SEC members were asked to submit their nominees
for six of the twelve faculty positions on the provost search committee
(the president appoints six faculty) to the Faculty Senate Office by 5 p.m.
Tuesday, December 16, accompanied by a supporting paragraph. The Chair,
Past Chair and Chair-elect were authorized to develop a short list of nominees
that will be discussed and voted on by SEC at a special SEC meeting scheduled
for Wednesday, January 14, 1998, from 3-4:30 p.m. SEC also agreed
that should the task require completion in a shorter time-frame voting will
be by e-mail.
10. Retirement and Benefits Subcommittee. The report was deferred.
Return to:Almanac, University of Pennsylvania, December
16, 1997, Volume 44, Number 16