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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 Mitchell Marcus, or Kristine Kelly, Box 12 College Hall/6303, (215) 898-6943 or

Actions Taken by the
Senate Executive Committee
Wednesday, February 5, 2003

1. Chair's Report. Senate Chair Mitch Marcus recommended that the election of the Faculty Senate Committee on Committees be conducted via e-mail, given the late date. SEC approved this recommendation. Professor Marcus then recommended to SEC that it sponsor a small number of sessions to inform the Faculty Senate membership on issues surrounding the upcoming vote on graduate student unionization, stressing the outcome of this vote will affect the University for years to come, and that it is very important that the faculty strongly encourage all eligible students to vote. After much discussion, SEC endorsed this recommendation.

2. Past Chair's Report on Academic Planning and Budget Committee and Capital Council. Past Chair David Hackney reported that both Academic Planning & Budget and Capital Council have continued to meet. He stated that although both the work and the agenda of these two committees is now confidential, the SEC agenda continues to include many of the key items that are coming before these committees.

3. Election of Chair, Senate Nominating Committee. SEC was informed that its slate of nominees for the Senate Nominating Committee was circulated to the Senate Membership in Almanac on January 21, 2003. Because no additional nominations by petition were received by the February 4, 2003 deadline, the Executive Committee's slate is declared elected according to the Senate Rules, and will be announced in a forthcoming Almanac. Professor Peter Kuriloff was elected chair of the committee.

4. State of the Health System and School of Medicine. Dr. Arthur Rubenstein, Dean, School of Medicine and EVP, University of Pennsylvania for the Health System, briefed SEC on Penn Medicine's ongoing strategic planning initiative. In response to questions about the financial state of the Health System and its impact upon Penn as a whole, Dr. Rubenstein emphasized that the Health System continues to run in the black, for the third consecutive year.

5. Indirect Cost Recovery Follow-up. In a follow up discussion to SEC's request that the Indirect Cost Recovery (ICR) study presented to SEC last month be published For Comment in Almanac, Provost Robert Barchi argued that such action would be inappropriate, given that no written version of this study exists, and that the recommendations of this study are largely administrative. He volunteered his willingness to present a summary of the two ICR studies and the resulting recommendations to the faculties of the various schools, and briefed SEC on the preliminary version of this presentation. Feedback to the presentation was quite positive. In further discussion, Provost Barchi agreed to publish in Almanac an announcement to the faculty that these briefings will be held.

6. Graduate Student Unionization. Deputy Provost Peter Conn briefly answered a variety of questions from SEC members about the graduate student unionization vote to be held February 26 and 27.

7. Gender Equity Because of the late hour, the discussion planned for this meeting of further actions that the faculty can take to improve faculty gender equity was delayed until next month.

8. New Business. There was no new business.


  Almanac, Vol. 49, No. 21, February 11, 2003