SENATE From the Senate Office
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 John Keene or Executive
Assistant Carolyn Burdon, Box 12 College Hall/6303, 898-6943 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. Chair's Report.
a. Elections. The chair announced the election of Larry Gross as Chair-elect and Sarah Kagan as Secretary-elect. Rosan Rocher moves up to Secretary (Almanac March 30). Their terms will begin at the changeover meeting of the Senate Executive Committee on May 5.
b. Working Group on Alcohol Abuse. The Provost has assembled this group with members Robert Barchi, Peter Conn, Herman Beavers, David Brownlee, and several students.
c. Campus Development Plan. This week, the administration published a document outlining the purposes of the plan, which addresses the physical needs and objectives of the University (Almanac April 6, 1999). It will provide general guidelines for the physical environment of the University within the framework of the Agenda for Excellence, the University's strategic plan.
d. Clothing Factories. The University has recently entered into an agreement regarding working conditions in the factories that make clothing sold by universities. A student group finds that there are short-comings in the agreement. Faculty desiring more information may contact Penn student Katie Flood by e-mail at email@example.com.
2. Past Chair's Report on Academic Planning and Budget Committee and on Capital Council. Past Chair Vivian Seltzer reported that the Academic Planning and Budget Committee has met weekly. Topics addressed involved the School of Engineering, Law, and Wharton, as well as the Campus Development Plan. Capital Council has held no meetings since the last SEC meeting, but held one mail poll.
3. Recommendation from the Committee on the Faculty. Committee Chair Harvey Rubin presented a proposed revision of the Handbook for Faculty and Academic Administrators [see it here] concerning Clinical Faculty in the Associated Faculty and Clinical Associates in the Academic Support Staff in the School of Medicine. The existing Handbook language requires that these individuals be independent of the University, but since the University of Pennsylvania Health System's (UPHS) acquisition of Presbyterian, Pennsylvania, and Phoenixville hospitals, these individuals are at sites that are now part of UPHS. The revision is intended to make clear that faculty in these two categories who work at sites other than the location of their department have been brought into UPHS and are now dependent on the University, may hold appointments as Clinical Faculty or Clinical Associates. The proposal was recommended by the School of Medicine to the Provost and then referred to the Faculty Senate for review.
Discussion included comments and questions on: the percentage of Clinical Faculty and Clinical Associates in the Medical School in relation to the Standing Faculty in the school; the Dental School currently prohibits Clinical Faculty practicing on site from exceeding 20% of the number of Standing Faculty; the Medical School has specific job guidelines, but has no maximum numbers for these two categories, and accords no voting rights to Associated Faculty or Academic Support Staff; ground rules such as voting rights and standards for part-time educators (there is no standard for full-time educators); the definition of and application of "independent" and "dependent"; what are the characteristics and restrictions involved; whether the proposed revision is descriptive or should be prescriptive; and whether similar proposals have been or may be made by other health schools.
The Chair stated that the administration informed the Faculty Senate that no further appointments would be made to these categories until the Faculty Senate voted on this proposed Handbook revision. There are individuals who serve as Clinical Faculty or Clinical Associates whose situation has been affected by the UPHS acquisition of the other hospitals; the proposal regularizes these appointments. SEC was urged to reach a decision on the proposal for the Medical School. The Chair reminded SEC that the Medical School has undertaken a self-study by Medical Faculty Committee 2000 that is focused on Standing Faculty but will address other issues. Its report is due next fall.
A motion to approve the proposed Handbook revision regarding Clinical Faculty in the Associated Faculty in the School of Medicine was made and seconded. It was adopted by an overwhelming majority.
A motion to approve the proposed Handbook revision regarding Clinical Associates in the Academic Support Staff in the School of Medicine was made and seconded. It was adopted without opposition.
It was suggested that the question of voting rights and participation in educational programs and graduate groups below the University level be referred to committee next year when proposals from other schools are referred to the Faculty Senate.
4. Informal discussion with President Rodin and Provost Barchi. President Rodin stated that Senate Chair John Keene had asked the President and Provost to discuss (1) the administration's recent decisons concerning alcohol abuse, (2) the UPHS's financial condition and Moody's bond rating, and (3) the Deputy Provost search and duties. She also wanted to review the purpose and procedures for the Campus Development Plan.
President Rodin said that alcohol abuse had long been a personal concern and that she has discussed it and the growing instances of binge drinking and violent behavior with faculty, students, and staff. Regarding the alcohol ban, she has directed the campus community to take time out and reflect on the issue and to engage more people in the conversation. Based on comments in last year's Report of the President's Task Force on Alcohol Abuse, she urged the faculty to schedule classes and exams Fridays and Mondays so as to work against the practice of parties beginning Thursday and continuing through Monday morning. Provost Barchi stated he was encouraged by the shift in discussions in the new Provost's Working Group on Alcohol Abuse from constituency- based points of view to an open exchange of ideas on how individuals can solve this problem. It is not an easy problem and is not solved by regulation or enforcement. To the contrary, it calls for a culture change that is driven by the students. It is important that faculty take responsibility themselves and emphasize to the students their personal responsibility and concern for each other.
A SEC member recommended the focus not be on underage drinking because the problem continues after reaching the legal drinking age of 21. The Provost commented that the temporary ban is on alcohol at registered undergraduate events and is not directed at underage drinking. President Rodin pointed out that the temporary ban is to address the at-risk population. Another SEC member agreed there is need for social change through sustained education and that equal weight should be given to drug abuse and personal psychological predisposition to using alcohol abusively. A SEC member recommended an anonymous survey of undergraduates be undertaken on the web.
In response to a SEC member's question as to whether the Handbook for Faculty and Academic Administrators is intended to have legal effect and whether the rules in it have been disregarded, the Provost said the Handbook is a living document and establishes the norms that govern the University.
Regarding the UPHS financial condition and Moody's analysis, President Rodin said Moody's is more aggressive than other rating agencies and is especially concerned with the Philadelphia health market. In the last two years, it has downgraded the bond rating of Temple and Penn and she expects they will also downgrade Jefferson. The Philadelphia area has aggressive health care financing organizations and the bankruptcy of Allegheny disequilabrated the health market. With the for-profit Tenet company entering the market, Moody's is concerned there will be more pressure on Penn and other non-profit health care providers. President Rodin stated that the University considers that the financial obligations of the UPHS are ultimately those of the University.
Provost Barchi said he has reviewed the Provost's Office toward making it more efficient and he has reorganized its management structure. The Provost will focus on strategic planning, budgeting, working with the deans, and undergraduate education. The new Deputy Provost will carry on in the absence of the Provost and have responsibility for undergraduate education.
President Rodin referred to the new Campus Development Plan (Almanac April 6, 1999). She contemplates formation of several committees [click here for more] to envision what the campus will look like in 10 or 20 years. Faculty, students, and staff will be involved. The committees will consider acquisition strategies and think through projects. A SEC member noted April 1 is the one-year anniversary of outsourcing facilities planning to Trammel Crow and asked what review has occurred. The President said a review is under way and the preliminary results are mixed. As the data are collected, the University is taking steps to improve the operation in areas of less-than-expected performance. Standards will be held high and the administration will insure they are attained.
(Formatting below differs from that of the Handbook itself, where titles are underlined. Here, deletions are in brackets and insertions are underlined.)
II.B.3 Associated Faculty
This group is composed of persons who are members of the Faculties of Medicine, Dental Medicine, Nursing, and Veterinary Medicine, who provide professional services and participate, on a part-time basis, in educational programs [on a part-time basis]. The professional careers of the Clinical Faculty in the Schools of Dental Medicine, Nursing or Veterinary Medicine are primarily independent of their University affiliations. The professional careers of the Clinical Faculty in the School of Medicine need not be independent of their University affiliation but at least 80% of their practice must be at locations other than the primary practice site(s) of their respective departments. Persons may serve [in part-time status] in the Clinical Faculty without limit of time through successive reappointments. The University does not assure continuity of appointments for any person in the Clinical Faculty. Academic ranks in the Clinical Faculty are Clinical Professor, Clinical Associate Professor, and Clinical Assistant Professor; e.g., Clinical Professor of (specialty) in the Faculty of (school). These titles are to be written in full whenever used on documents, in listings of University personnel, and in correspondence.
II.B.4 Academic Support Staff
Clinical Associates work in clinical programs of the health schools and
must hold the appropriate terminal degree in their disciplines. The professional
careers of Clinical Associates in the Schools of Dental Medicine, Nursing,
or Veterinary Medicine are primarily independent of their University
affiliations. The professional careers of Clinical Associates in the
School of Medicine need not be independent of their University affiliation
but at least 80% of their practice must be at locations other than the primary
practice site(s) of their respective departments. [They] Clinical
Associates participate on a part-time basis in the educational programs
of their respective schools. They may serve without limit of time through
successive annual appointments, but the University does not assure continuity
of appointments for any Clinical Associate.
Almanac, Vol. 45, No. 28, April 13, 1999