T H E S E N A T E R E C O R D
Volume 52—–December 4, 2018—–Number 3
The Senate Record is the official publication of the University Faculty Senate of The Pennsylvania State University, as provided for in Article I, Section 9 of the Standing Rules of the Senate, and contained in the Constitution, Bylaws, and Standing Rules of the University Faculty Senate, The Pennsylvania State University.
The publication is issued by the Senate Office, 101 Kern Graduate Building, University Park, PA 16802 (telephone 814-863-0221). The Senate Record is on file in the University Archives and is posted online at http://www.senate.psu.edu/senators under “Publications.”
Except for items specified in the applicable Standing Rules, decisions on the responsibility for inclusion of matters in the publication are those of the Chair of the University Faculty Senate.
When existing communication channels seem insufficient, senators are encouraged to submit brief letters relevant to the Senate’s function as a legislative, advisory and forensic body to the Chair for possible inclusion in The Senate Record.
Reports that have appeared in the Agenda for the meeting are not included in The Senate Record unless they have been changed substantially during the meeting, or are considered to be of major importance. Remarks and discussions are abbreviated in most instances. Every Senate meeting is webcast via MediaSite. All Senate meetings are digitally audio recorded and on file in the Senate office. Transcriptions of portions of the Senate meeting are available upon request.
Individuals with questions may contact Dr. Dawn Blasko, Executive Director, Office of the University Faculty Senate.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
FINAL AGENDA FOR OCTOBER 23, 2018
- MINUTES OF THE PRECEDING MEETING
Minutes of the October 23, 2018, Meeting in The Senate Record 52:2
- COMMUNICATIONS TO THE SENATE
Senate Curriculum Report of November 13, 2018
- REPORT OF SENATE COUNCIL
Meeting of November 13, 2018
- ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE CHAIR
- COMMENTS BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY
- COMMENTS BY THE EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND PROVOST
Special Informational Report: 2018-2019 Approved University Operating Budget
- FORENSIC BUSINESS
- UNFINISHED BUSINESS
Committee on Committees and Rules
Revisions to Bylaws; Article VII- Delegation of Authority, Section 1
- LEGISLATIVE REPORTS
Admissions, Records, Scheduling, and Student Aid
Changes to Senate Policy 42-98: Educational Experiences in the Armed Services
Committee on Committees and Rules
Revisions to Standing Rules; Article II – Senate Committee Structure, Section 6(h) Committee on Undergraduate Education
- ADVISORYADVISORY/CONSULTATIVE REPORTS
- INFORMATIONAL REPORTS
Senate Special Centennial Committee
Centennial Committee Progress Report
Faculty Benefits and Joint Committee on Insurance and Benefits
2017-2018 Annual Report on the Status of Benefit Changes
REPORT POSTPONED UNTIL THE JANUARY 29, 2019 MEETING
Libraries, Information Systems, and Technology
Reimagining Information Technology
*Summary of Petitions by College, Campus, and Unit 2017-2018
- NEW LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS
- COMMENTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE GOOD OF THE UNIVERSITY
* No Presentation of reports marked with an asterisk.
The University Faculty Senate met on Tuesday, December 4, 2018, at 1:30 p.m. in room 112 Kern Graduate building with Michael Bérubé, Chair, presiding.
Chair Bérubé: All right, I’d like to call to order the Plenary meeting of the University Faculty Senate for December 4, our final meeting of the calendar year. I know I will miss you all over the break.
MINUTES OF THE PRECEDING MEETING
Chair Bérubé: First things first, the Minutes of the Preceding Meeting. The October 23, 2018, Senate Record, providing a full transcription of the proceedings of the meetings, was sent to the University archives and is posted on the Faculty Senate website. Are there any corrections or additions to these minutes? Seeing none, may I hear a motion to accept?
Unidentified Senator: So motioned.
Chair Bérubé: Second?
Unidentified Senator: Second.
Chair Bérubé: All in favor of approving the minutes.
All Senators: Aye.
Chair Bérubé: Opposed? Ayes have it. Motion carried. The Minutes of the Preceding Meeting have been approved.
COMMUNICATIONS TO THE SENATE
Chair Bérubé: Item B, Communications to the Senate. The Senate Curriculum Report of November 13, 2018, are also posted on the Faculty Senate website.
REPORT OF SENATE COUNCIL
Chair Bérubé: Report of Senate Council. The minutes of the November 13 can be found at the end of your agenda.
ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE CHAIR
Chair Bérubé: And now for Announcements by the Chair. Today, I would like to introduce our 2018-2019 Administrative Fellows. Please stand when I read your name. Zuleima Karpyn. Have I got that right?
Zuleima Karpyn: [INAUDIBLE]
Chair Bérubé: Zuleima is Professor and Chair of the Department of Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, and her mentor is Nick Jones, Executive Vice President and Provost.
Laurie Verost. She is the Associate Director of the Department of Student Affairs and Career Services. Her mentor is Lawrence Lokman, Vice President for Strategic Communications.
And Lynette Yarger. Sorry?
Zuleima Karpyn: [INAUDIBLE]
Chair Bérubé: Well, thank you for representing all of them. Lynette is an Associate Professor in the College of Information Sciences and Technology, and her mentor is Michael Kubit, Vice President for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer.
I have five announcements to make. I’ll make them brief. They are all about critical Faculty Senate business. So first and foremost, I’ve already made this announcement in BoardEffect, but I want to repeat it and underline it here. I want to urge each and every one of you to review the report of the Academic Integrity Task Force. It is available in BoardEffect, and three senators have already posted individual responses in that forum.
The report is currently being reviewed by six standing committees– Admissions, Records, Scheduling, Student Aid; Educational Equity and Campus Environment; Intra-University Relations; Libraries Information Systems and Technology; Student Life; and Undergraduate Education. Members of the academic integrity task force, such as Yvonne Gaudelius, Karen Feldbaum, Chris Masters, and Keefe Manning, have been meeting with each of these committees to answer questions about their report. So, I think we are doing our due diligence on that front.
But even if this report is not on your committee’s agenda, that is, if you’re serving on one of the nine committees that is not charged with reviewing and responding to this report, you should read it anyway and offer individual feedback. This report goes to the heart of our educational mission and potentially affects each and every student and faculty member at Penn State. Furthermore, you should be aware that our current Academic Integrity Policy is a creature of this body. It was created by the University Faculty Senate. This is very much Senate business. This is totally in our wheelhouse. And we all have an obligation to pitch in.
I know this is a crazy busy time of year for all of us, but perhaps once you’ve turned in your grades, cleaned up your office, and completed whatever rituals mark the end of a semester for you, please take a quiet afternoon and review the report. I want to get as many eyes as possible on this document. But, I also want- as I always want- for the Senate to move expeditiously. I can tell you that the Faculty Senates of Greater Allegheny and York have already composed formal responses, and the Senate Committee on Educational Equity and Campus Environment has drafted a response, as well. We will also schedule a forensic session at a plenary meeting in the spring, and I expect to be able to collate all of your responses well before the end of this academic year.
Second item. In October, I announced that Matthew Woessner and I would hold a Senate Leadership Workshop in December for anyone considering running for the position of Senate Chair or Senate Secretary. This is the final year of Annie Taylor’s term, and though she is a hard act to follow, someone will have to try. Due to scheduling conflicts involving the people who had expressed interest, we have had to postpone that event until the day before the next plenary session, so Monday, January 28, 2019, at 4:00 PM. That means that all of you have almost another two months to get in touch with me if you’re interested in participating. We only have two takers so far, so the invitation remains open.
Third, you will note that today’s agenda originally included the presentation of the Informational Report from the Senate Committee on Faculty Benefits and the Joint Committee on Insurance and Benefits. This report, the 2017-18 Annual Report on the Status of Benefit Changes, remains available in your agenda as Appendix H. We had allotted 20 minutes for discussion on this report, not least because it contains the rather disturbing information that overall employee out-of-pocket costs increased 24 percent last year.
We need to drill down into this report carefully. And since Greg Stoner, Senior Director for Compensation and Benefits in the Office of Human Resources, could not be with us today to answer questions about the report, we are postponing that discussion until January. In the meantime, read the report- just after you have read the Academic Integrity Report. This is your homework for the holiday break.
Fourth, I have an update on matters related to something we will vote on later today. You will see in Appendix D that we are proposing to revise our Bylaws by incorporating into them some language from the requirements and the recommendations for faculty governance organizations set forth by the Senate Council. To wit, it is the position of the Faculty Senate that the members of elected faculty governance organizations should be able to elect their own chair. The rationale is simply that these are faculty governance organizations and we are all grownups.
Now, there are a few units in which this wasn’t standard practice, the Law School and the Graduate School, where the dean serves as Chair of the Faculty Governance Committee. Last year, we worked closely with the Law School as they revised their Bylaws to comply with Senate requirements. And this year, we reached out to Dean Younken with regard to the Graduate Council.
Dean Younken kindly invited me to make a presentation to Grad Council and to take questions, after which there was an informal straw-poll of Grad Council members to see if they themselves wanted to elect a chair from their own ranks, because certainly the Senate would not want to be in the position of imposing a practice on a faculty governance body over the wishes of the actual members of that body. I’m happy to report the results of that straw vote were 20 in favor, eight opposed, eight abstaining, so we have pretty strong support for this from the members of Grad Council, and I hope we can move forward with our own vote today.
Fifth and last, and on a more personal note, today is the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht, the program usually regarded by historians as the origin of the Holocaust. I want to take this occasion and my position as Chair of the University Faculty Senate to denounce last week’s desecration and subsequent theft of the menorah at the Zeta Beta Tau fraternity house. This was not ordinary vandalism. This was an act of hate. And, I know I speak for the Senate when I say it is inimical to our mission as a University. It is incumbent on all of us, on every campus, to reaffirm Penn State values, and to repudiate and resist any instance of the resurgence of anti-Semitism.
Before we begin, let me remind you that when you wish to speak, please raise your hand and wait for me to recognize you. A microphone will be brought to you so that your remarks can be captured for the record. Please stand, say your name and your academic unit before your remarks. I thank you. And now, I will turn to President Barron– and we are fortunate to have him with us today– to make comments and take a few questions. President Barron.
COMMENTS BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY
Eric Barron, President: So, one of the things that’s interesting in this day and age is we have a lot of people looking at the demographics of Pennsylvania and seeing enrollment challenges that are occurring across the state. And it seems like there’s sort of a resurgence of a certain amount of mythology about Penn State, something like if Penn State would quit building campuses, it wouldn’t be such a competitive environment. Of course, we haven’t built a campus in 50 years, and so– or, you must be having demographic problems, you must be having challenges in terms of finances.
Is a Commonwealth Campus really costing the University, and unable to accomplish other things? Or the term ‘branch’ that I think at least I’ve tried to leave behind. And, so, I thought I would look at this. And this is a slightly shorter presentation than I gave to the Board of Trustees. I thought I would look at this in terms of our mission.
We can look at an entity in terms of its balance sheet, but it’s most appropriate for a university to always have that in the back of your mind, but to be focused on whether or not you’re achieving your mission. So, I set about getting help to collect all the data on how our campus system was contributing to our mission as a Land Grant.
So first of all, one of our great strengths and why we’re very different than other institutions is that we have one University, literally one University, with 20 undergraduate campuses, one mission that is there– and that’s important– one administration, academic leadership, business, finance, student affairs, research enterprise, physical plant, one application process, one admission process, one governing board, and a great deal of focus on having uniform academic standards. So, something I’m very proud of and I believe this model is the reason why Penn State is as successful as it is.
So, if I look at that structure and I look at what its value is to serve our mission, what I see is that that integration, unlike 20 standalone universities, that integration provides a stability against demographic and other changes. And it does so very clearly and helps us ensure that we don’t have programs that are yo-yos, but we have a high level of strength for the program.
It absolutely contributes to a much more affordable access to a world-class degree. It is a pipeline for diversity for University Park and for this institution as a whole. There’s considerable economic community impact, considerable economic impact on our communities, and we see very clearly that there is a role in philanthropy that would not be there without our campus structure.
So, let me go through this. Integration provides stability. Well, there’s strength in numbers here. Provides more access to Pennsylvania residents. 50 percent of all first-year students, 60 percent of all PA students start at a Commonwealth Campus. Nearly 4,000 students transition annually. You have significant demographic changes, but our structure allows us to serve suburban, urban, and rural communities collectively. So, we’re not sitting within a catchment area where we’re just watching what happens in that catchment area. We’re integrating across the entire state, and all the different growth, non-growth zones that are there.
It also allows for some specialization. Not all are similar. So, an example that I use is the fact that, with Berks now with the proximity of a Penn State Health hospital and St. Joe, we have the opportunity to do some things there that are directly connected to our community. And again, this is very powerful because we wouldn’t even think this way if we were just one campus here.
The enrollment trend for the Commonwealth Campuses is fascinating. And of course, there’s a lot of different colors there for campuses. And with the exception of the last year, which is special circumstances in terms of changing in a lot of systems and a group of applications that were going through the system more slowly that caught us off-guard, that’s a remarkably stable total across there. And our current applications and paid accepts for the campuses is already way above what it was last year.
So, over this last five, six, seven years, we’ve been looking at a fairly uniform student population. One year a little off, but I think we’re about to see that recover. So, this is not at all the story that you’re reading about in newspapers with enrollments at campuses dropping by 50 percent, and some of the struggles. But like I say, we have the opportunity to add these all up in a column that generates revenue for the campus system.
OK, now this next diagram is something that I really love. So, this is a 15-mile and a 30-mile radius around each campus. And what you see is 75 percent of Pennsylvania residents live within 15 miles of campus. Ninety-five percent of Pennsylvania residents live within 30 miles of a campus. We are the state of Pennsylvania in terms of access, because this is a very powerful opportunity for us to serve individuals close to where they live.
So, 82 percent of the Commonwealth Campuses are PA residents, 50 percent of UP students are PA residents, and 13 percent started at a campus. So, you’re going to see this type of diagram for each of these different areas for which I think the contributions of the campuses is extraordinarily important, because they’re the campus structure, then there’s University Park with that portion of what I would call a credit to University Park that’s coming from the campuses. And the campuses are ensuring that every single one of our campuses is majority Pennsylvania. That’s getting rarer or rarer among higher education institutions across the country.
Students enroll close to home. I find this to be quite fascinating, the degree to which students see that campus as their access point. And so, you see these extremely large percentages of students that are coming from that bullseye that I showed you around each campus. And what are the exceptions? Well, they’re Erie, more comprehensive, more of a regional draw; Altoona, the same thing; Harrisburg in the same category. So, you really are seeing the role and structure of each of these campuses and their ability to provide opportunity for the population that’s living around them.
Well, now think of what that impact is. There’s differential tuition. It saves the students a considerable amount of money. The student can live at home. That saves a considerable amount of money. They can continue to work. They’ve got a family business or a local business that they’ve been working on. Sixty-two percent of those students average 22 hours of work a week. It provides opportunities for non-traditional place-bound students. Seventeen percent of the students are adults, including some 1,000 veterans. So that provides an opportunity for an adult student that we would not have otherwise.
Campuses for many supports an adjustment to college academic expectations. It’s a smaller community. It’s a tighter opportunity for someone to have their pulse on how it is that you’re doing. And high demand, high interest programs enable students, in many cases, to even complete their degrees at their home. So, this is a powerful access message and a powerful affordability message that you can say more than 95 percent of the students are within 30 miles of that campus. And you’re providing an opportunity for someone who’s place-based, you’re providing a much lower cost opportunity, both in tuition and in terms of their cost of living, and you are a world-class degree that is Penn State.
We see this in other metrics here in terms of this importance for this group of students that may have less financial capability. Thirty-seven percent of Commonwealth Campuses are first generation. A third of first-generation students at UP started at a Commonwealth Campus. First generation, typically, is a student that has less resources, less of a role model, more of an importance for that campus environment to help make sure that they are successful.
This, in my mind, is another dramatic chart here, because this is the median family income compared to a student aid assessment of the students that are coming in in those campuses. And there’s University Park to the right. You cannot leave this picture without realizing that part of the power of the Commonwealth Campuses is to serve a population that is less advantaged in the process, and certainly less advantaged than the population applying for financial aid at University Park. And I look at something like Shenango on that list, and realize that, for that community and that draw for that set of students, how profoundly important that Shenango Campus is for that population. So again, this makes us Pennsylvania’s University, in having these campuses that allow us to save dollars and attract someone to a world-class degree who otherwise might not have that as an opportunity.
Well, there’s also a lot of community focus here. So, this is just some examples: Fayette hosting an annual STEAM Program to introduce female high school students to non-traditional careers, or Allegheny Food Bank serving the students in community, or Lehigh Valley Scholarship Dinner that celebrates students and local donors. You would not have this with a single campus. You would not have all of those different connections.
So, you look at all those added categories of community service, and where it is that this University meets the population, and you realize that, because of that distribution and a financial model that allows us to be successful, we are doing things that a typical university cannot do because they cannot have that connectivity to their campuses.
It’s also a pipeline for diversity. So, I have said many times including when I came in the door, that there is a moral imperative to educate the residents of Pennsylvania and the country. There is an environmental richness imperative that is associated with a diverse student population. Every time I see a student who’s had a meaningful relationship with someone very different than them, they talk about how positive it is. And quite frankly, if we look at the demographics of the US and the world, it’s a business model imperative that we are a welcoming and inclusive environment.
Well, the Commonwealth Campuses draw from their catchment area. And that means they’re drawing from the diversity of their communities. So, University Park is the exception. We also see that Erie and Altoona and Harrisburg also have a bit broader broad. But there is no doubt that the diversity at University Park is there because of the role of the campuses in drawing students in from their regions.
So, this shows you what the minority enrollment is by campus. There is 20 percent at University Park. And, you’re looking at, basically, a map of diversity in the state of Pennsylvania, and the draw of the campuses ensuring that we have a diverse population. So again, this is a rather important element of the success of Penn State. So, this just gives you an idea. And, this repeat here that 24 percent of Commonwealth Campus students are from underrepresented groups, 16 percent add five or two-plus-two and 21 percent at University Park. So, the breadth of diversity at this campus is very much dependent on the role of the Commonwealth Campuses to draw in the populations in their regions.
Well, there is also an economic impact. So, Penn State ranks number six among top employers. We’re about to do a study to see what our economic impact is. We haven’t done it for a decade. It used to be $16 billion dollars a year- I suspect it’s a lot more. We have Invent Penn State and LaunchBoxes with entrepreneurial support and resources, investment, community partners. There were six LaunchBoxes in 2016, five more in 2017, four in 2018, and five are in progress. So, we’re on our way this year to have 21 different LaunchBoxes.
The campuses are cultural centers. They’re a magnet for their community, and they’re a magnet for economic development. And, the development of these LaunchBoxes, if we just took FY 16 to 18, for which we have, as you know by the growth in the number, only a limited number of LaunchBoxes that are associated with the campuses, this is the outcome. Five hundred ninety-two entrepreneurs assisted, 1,500 students that were engaged and walked through the door of a LaunchBox- that’s an astounding number that I never would have guessed at. Three hundred ninety-four faculty and staff engaged. Seventy-two new products that were developed. Ninety-one new startups program graduates. Thirty-nine new companies residing in Pennsylvania communities. Eighty-nine jobs created. One hundred forty-seven internships. I always love this, because students and community members are hiring students as their interns. That’s a remarkable statement.
In-kind support, $755,000 dollars. External match leverage funds, $3.5 million dollars. Total external matched and leveraged funds since 2015, $4.9 million dollars. We provided $50,000 dollars a year-three years in a row- in order to get one of these LaunchBoxes going. And there is leveraged and matched at $5 million dollars over a two-year period. This is also a profound statement of the connectivity of a campus to their community. And those numbers that I just showed you is a remarkable statement of the potential of these LaunchBoxes and this community campus participation to really drive economic development in ways that people did not expect.
Philanthropy fits in the same category. Individuals and businesses connect to Penn State through the campuses. Penn State Alumni Association, 21 Campus Societies, 200-plus alumni volunteers serving more than 468,000 alumni who attended a Commonwealth Campus. Twenty Commonwealth Campus Advisory Boards, 610 members, 294 Commonwealth Campus Campaign Committee Members. Local industries providing 3,500 internships annually. One more sign of the degree to which the campuses connect us to their regions in ways that would not happen if we did not have them.
Total Commonwealth gift commitments to a greater Penn State Campaign so far. We’re not even two-and one-half years in, I think we’re two years and five months in- $128 million dollars. That’s a substantial set of gifts. Over the past 10 years, the number of endowments for Commonwealth Campuses grew by 53 percent to 1,915. Book value grew by 46 percent, and Open-Door Scholarships are coming in left and right. We actually had to suspend the program because all the dollars were matched. So many, many more.
But you see over and over again many examples of an individual who gave the money that they gave to help a Pennsylvania student become successful because of their connection to the campus. So, this is a good example at Shenango. Paul Chadderton built his trucking business in Sharon, (Pennsylvania). He donated $1 million dollars because “kids need more education than when I was young, and it’s harder for them to find the money to afford it.” And if you remember, the median family income of a Shenango student that applied for aid is $27,000 dollars.
OK, that million dollars wouldn’t have been there without that campus being there, or the– you can pick even people that went through the two-plus-two, like Steve Taub, who just gave $17 million dollars to the Abington campus. A remarkable gift, and he did it because he sees Abington as the transformative part of his experience at Penn State.
And literally we see these all over the place. You could make a very long list, whether it’s Mark Dambly, who wanted to give a gift to Brandywine, or Don Graham, not a Penn State alumnus. I visited him in his box at Ann Arbor because he’s a Michigan grad, having a profound impact in York on the York campus. Hazleton, Lofstrom Library, Abington, Ira Lubert, Steve Sheetz, and the Hite family in Altoona, Palumbo Charitable Trust in DuBois, Sam and Irene Black in terms of their contributions in Erie. We see over and over again that individuals and their philanthropy is connected to their communities. And our community is the entire state, with all those campuses reaching 95 percent of the residents in the state of Pennsylvania.
So, here’s my summary. We should be incredibly proud of this system, this model that we’ve developed at Penn State. It is, in my mind, a key to fulfilling the Land Grant Mission of Penn State University in terms of access and affordability. Whether I look at first-in-family, or I look at the family incomes associated with those catchment areas, or whether I look at the cost differential to be able to live at home and to pay a difference intuition, or whether I look at the number of people that are place-based and see the campuses as an opportunity, this is a key to fulfilling our mission of access and affordability.
There is no doubt we have to look at this and say this is also a key to fulfilling the moral and business imperatives of having a diverse University. There’s clearly a powerful economic impact and a greater connection with the communities that is associated with- one that we’re amplifying, I think, through the LaunchBoxes, among other types of activities.
And if you look, philanthropists, volunteers, and alumni groups are tied to campuses. And this presents a very different picture when you start to realize that people want to give money where they live and work, even if that’s not their University. Don Graham is just a wonderful example. So, this is very close– I just tried to make it a little bit shorter– close a presentation to what I gave to the Board of Trustees. And I ended this presentation with the Board of Trustees by asking two questions.
We should get tired of someone saying ‘branch’ okay? We should get tired of someone saying, you must be in trouble because the demographics of Pennsylvania is in trouble. Or you know, how are you managing that, because there is no doubt in my mind that this is fundamental to us being able to deliver our mission, and to do it in a way that is academically strong and financially thoughtful.
So, I think the question is, how can we do a better job of communicating where we sit in this institution? We just had the Chair of Senate Appropriations here for a good portion of the day, and he was really intrigued by this financial model, because that’s not something that’s typical. But it gives us a robustness that others don’t have. So how can we do a better job of communicating the value of the uniqueness of our structure? It’s like nothing else, although Georgia’s emulate part of it here.
And then how do we build on this mission? Because this is a great story about access and affordability. So how do we build on it and make it even stronger? That concludes my presentation. I’m happy to take questions. Thank you so much.
I’m happy to take questions. And as you know, I’ll take questions on any topic, even though I may or may not know the answer. I can always go find it. So, questions?
Chair Bérubé: Mediasite.
Anna Butler, Faculty Senate Staff: This question is from Vinita Acharya from the College of Medicine, “If a student graduates from Penn State Altoona versus University Park, will the degree certificate look the same in 2025?”
President Barron: So right now, you graduate from Penn State. You will graduate from Penn State.
Chair Bérubé: That’s the answer. Anything else? Yes. David.
David Smith, Executive Director, Division of Undergraduate Studies: This is more of a comment. Would these slides be available– David Smith–sorry, David Smith, Division of Undergraduate Studies. These are very helpful slides, particularly the information around the financial position of our students across the Commonwealth. Is this available [INAUDIBLE]?
President Barron: Absolutely. I know that is posted for the Board, with about five other additional slides that I just used to shorten it. But you know, I’ve sent it to the Faculty Senate, and the Faculty Senate- if they have mechanisms to post it for everybody-I’m more than happy to have that be. And many people have said, you know, a lot of those slides are going to be very helpful in Harrisburg, as well, because it really does much better define what we’re all about.
David Smith: Thank you very much. Appreciate it.
President Barron: My pleasure.
Chair Bérubé: President Barron, I’ve been getting the other five slides from the Trustees presentation. Do they include anything on the way we move students from the bottom two quintiles up by 35? Because it’s implied here.
President Barron: Yeah. No, so the ones– there were two extra slides about philanthropy about different individuals giving gifts, so I just simplified it there. There was an introductory slide. My intent is for the Board to basically go through the elements of the key parts of Penn State in achieving its Land Grant Mission. So, One Penn State 2025 is one element of that. The campuses are an element of that. What research we do and why is a part of that, and what our investment is doing in that, and the degree to which we serve communities and have outreach to communities.
So, these are four thematic areas that are being introduced to the Board for a deeper discussion, so they have an understanding, hopefully. And my understanding, quite frankly, grows on how it is we’re serving our mission. Because I learned a lot from the gathering of this data, where I believed I had a feel for this, but when it’s this black and white or red and orange or whatever, it’s much harder to ignore the impact.
Chair Bérubé: In the back.
Julia Bryan, College of Education: Hi. I’m Julia Bryan, College of Education. This was a great presentation– really fascinating, especially looking at the economic diversity. One of the things I wanted to ask about was collaboration across campuses. Did you have anything in there to share with us?
President Barron: I didn’t. It’s a good thing to put on the list because there’s a lot of interesting things there as well. I brag that the Math faculty get together, and the English faculty get together when I tell other presidents this because they don’t think that Penn State should work. They don’t. The accreditors came in, and one of the accreditors said, I know secretly you should have 21 accreditations, and you’re just trying to save yourself time. And at the end of it, he said, no, you’re one University. And I thought that was quite a compliment after he spent three days here. And these collaborations– it’s a good part of it. We’ll try to add it to the list.
Julia Bryan: I’d be curious about that. Thank you.
President Barron: Thank you.
Chair Bérubé: Renee?
Renee Borromeo, Mont Alto: Borromeo, Mont Alto. Love the presentation, really good, makes me proud to be at one of the campuses, and proudly part of Penn State. If I could, I’d ask about a slightly different matter. I was the co-chair of the Smoke Free/Tobacco Free Task Force, and I’m just a little disappointed when I come here. I don’t see any change, and I’m just wondering is anything new being done– anything that you can give me an update– or give us an update– on what’s happening on that front? Thank you.
President Barron: Happily. All parties agreed this was a good idea. We had a few people that thought less, and a lot of the examples of successful programs are soft launches where you start to prepare people ahead of time. And so, we are in the process of developing that, which would be a soft launch. We’re not going to do anything punitive. And I will tell you, when I did this at Florida State and everybody worried about it being punitive, people really did start to avoid smoking on campus. And some people came up to you and even thanked you for doing it because it gave them an added impetus to do it. So, we have had to go through some things like, what if I’m in my car driving across campus and things like that. But the sense is warning people ahead of time, as opposed to wandering around seeing people smoking and say, don’t do that. And so, I think you’ll see emerging a kind of a social media presentation campaign. And if I have this right, I think next fall the idea is that this is set. We are working that way.
Paul Thompson, Harrisburg: Paul Thompson from Harrisburg. I, too, found the presentation to be very moving. I think you proved in reality something that doesn’t work in theory, so that’s great. It was very Pennsylvania-centric– what about the international students that come here? Is there a slide that shows how they identify, even if they attend a CC as opposed to Main Campus? And what’s the theory about maximizing their support and contribution?
President Barron: Yeah, OK, so I did not look at that. It’s a good thing to look at. It’s a good thing to look at for multiple reasons. Reason one is there’s a great deal of concern about changing numbers of international students that want to come to the US. I think this morning there was a Chronicle article about the $40 billion dollars that international students are spending a year in the US. What happens if it’s not there in terms of– and the interesting thing– and a softness in terms of the applications that had a lot of people worried. And, I’m going to count on Rob Pangborn to correct me if I say this wrong. What did we see? Well, we saw it looked like we were like eight-percent down or something, then all of a sudden, in the last couple of days before you had to have your dollars in, our international numbers went back to about where they were, where it didn’t look like we were necessarily following the national trend. Now, there’s a lot of discussion about that as weakness as well, but– I don’t know what the yield will be– but our international applications are up.
This is a good thing, but there was also some distributional change to have more students at Philadelphia campuses and Harrisburg. And it’s hard to take one year and say, well, this is because– But you have to wonder whether or not some students may feel more comfortable in a more urban environment, given what they may perceive as a climate in the US, which is troubling. So, this is something, I think, to watch carefully to see if we’re about to see some change in the distribution of students because of that as a concern.
But so far, it looks like we’re more robust than we might have thought. There’s a lot of data starting to emerge that the institutions best capable of buffering innovation, most capable of managing resources successfully and not get into financial trouble, most successful in attracting students– those are obviously related– are the public flagships that are large, broad, have high rankings that allow them to bring in students from around the world.
So, we may be seeing a little bit of that too, that Penn State is looking good despite all the discussions that are out there. A lot of that evidence suggests it’s the public flagships that are the ones that are going to weather it the best. So, don’t know the full answer there, but this is something we’re watching carefully.
Chair Bérubé: Is Gary King with us? Gary? He’s a non-senator but he requested permission to ask a question.
Unidentified participant: Oh, hello. Hi.
Chair Bérubé: Dr. King from the College of Health and Human Development. Not a Senator but has requested to ask a question today.
President Barron: Yeah.
Gary King, College of Health and Human Development: Yes, thank you very much. I appreciate the opportunity to ask the President a couple of questions, particularly related to your slide that dealt with diversity and the pipeline to diversity. I’m very much concerned about that– as I’m sure there are others part of this body who also are very concerned– and particularly as it relates to African American faculty and the lack of diversity that exists at the University with regard to instructors, as well as teachers and tenured professors.
So, if in fact, we’re really serious about issues related to the pipeline to diversity, should it not also apply to faculty- the pipeline for diversity and within our entire faculty. So, I would very much appreciate it if you could address those issues, and perhaps provide some guidance as to how we as a faculty, in terms of our departments and our colleges, could address this in a much better manner than which the way it is being done now.
President Barron: Yeah, so my feeling is this is an incredibly important, an incredibly important question that fits in the same context. And having been here once before, one of the things that impressed me was the notion of a framework for diversity, which created action plans and metrics that colleges, campuses had to follow through on. And Penn State got a lot of recognition for doing that. And maybe when I was a dean here, it was the second one or something like that, and we’re on the fourth one or the fifth one. And a lot of bright ideas, a lot of different things that had potential, and yet, when I step back and look at the population of faculty, you cannot see a single knickpoint in that, that some action that Penn State took in a framework for diversity changed the slope in the diversity of the faculty. And as a matter of fact, it is this slow– fortunately persistent in the positive– but very slow growth in numbers over decades. Many of my colleagues out there report similar characteristics.
So, you know, each time you ask yourself, OK, what can I do now that is better, that will improve this picture? OK, so perhaps it’s matching funds for postdocs that’ll allow people to make a decision that’s a little bit more fluid, having an individual who now believes their entire job is to make sure that we recruit talent and keep talent– perhaps that will make a difference. Perhaps the fact that we now have a hundred or so people that have volunteered to help search committees to–
Perhaps it is the notion that– and I’m forgetting what environment I was in, but I don’t think it was here, but it could have been– this notion that a dean, for example, should reject a pool of candidates if it’s not diverse, as opposed to listen to someone say, “Well, we had a diverse pool– these are the three people that have come up to the top of the list.” Perhaps the dean should go back and say, “You know what, I need it to be more diverse to provide an opportunity for someone to pass to the next level.” Quite frankly, I will tell you that I am not so sure whether, if I come back in 15 years– and I even take this set of things that we’ve been doing and the examples that I just gave– whether or not there’s any knickpoint that’s in there. Now, I talked to some of my other colleagues, so I’ll give you an example of Rutgers. Rutgers has quite a mentoring program that they work on and a diverse junior faculty pool. And they do not have a diverse professoriate because the faculty are all stolen as soon as they give them tenure, and because there is a tremendous demand and interest in this particular topic, which leads us to another element, and that is to grow our own.
Millennium Scholars, which started out as a relatively small program, now takes a very diverse population with the idea– from freshmen– that they will get their PhD. And they had something like, the first cohort, 90 percent of the students enter grad school– rather remarkable. I don’t remember how many Millennium Scholars we have now, but it’s 40 a year that are in that process, so basically 160 that are sitting there on campus working towards their PhD.
And this is, in fact, a population where we’re attempting to grow diversity for the professoriate because of this feeling we have to take a long view as well as a short view. We’re doing that with UMBC and with UNC Chapel Hill. The three of us are working hard on this model because UMBC has provided more STEM PhD’s on faculties on different campuses than any other university, so we’re trying to emulate this program that they developed.
OK, so I’m going like this with you, not knowing where the traction is and what it is that we’re doing, and afraid that we’ll step back in 10 years and go, okay, the drift upward is occurring. Where was the knickpoint that said Penn State found the right formula to have a more diverse faculty? So, all I can tell you is that I’m passionate about getting there, and right along with a lot of people, I’m struggling with how to get there. That’s as honest as I can be– the next set of things putting in place, and I just suspect it’s just not good enough.
Gary King: Thank you very much. And I also would encourage the same type of sentiments be expressed with regard to the college deans as well as departments’ heads. Thank you.
Chair Bérubé: Thank you. David?
David Han, College of Medicine: College of Medicine. Just to follow up on that, the topic of diversity and inclusion is going to be the sole focus of the Committee on Academic Affairs and Student Life at the February Board of Trustees meeting.
Chair Bérubé: Thank you. One more over here.
Gary Thomas, Hershey Medical Center: Hi.
Chair Bérubé: Arise.
Gary Thomas: Hello
Chair Bérubé: Please, stand up.
Gary Thomas: Yeah. Oh, sorry. I’m Gary Thomas from the Hershey Medical Center. Do we have any Commonwealth Campus within the borders of Philadelphia? It seems like we have 20 campuses and the largest city in the state and the most diverse city. I mean that would be the natural move.
President Barron: Well, it would– So really, you mean in a much more urban setting?
Gary Thomas: Yeah.
President Barron: Yeah. So, what you’re really telling me is, that when other chancellors or legislators say, if you quit building campuses, we wouldn’t have this problem, you would like this to be real. Okay. Interesting to think about.
Chair Bérubé: I can add from the Senate officers’ side that we just visited New Kensington, and they would like to be moved 10 miles further south. Good, we’ll get on that.
President Barron: No, but I really get your point. And I mean, there is a different competition there in terms of who we’d be going head to head with. And of course, we’ve been working really hard at the commuter parts of Philadelphia, and even with a residence hall like in Abington and Brandywine that filled up very, very quickly, which allows that draw to be a little bit bigger in those regions. Yeah, okay. Well, that’s an interesting thought. I’m going to try it out on Government Affairs just to see how they react.
Chair Bérubé: Thank you so much. Thank you, President Barron.
President Barron: Thank you. Thank you. [APPLAUSE]
COMMENTS BY THE EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT AND PROVOST
Chair Bérubé: It is now my pleasure to recognize Provost Jones for some comments, and following his comments and a few questions, Provost Jones will present the University Budget Report.
Special Informational Report
2018-2019 Approved University Operating Budget
Nicholas Jones, Executive Vice President and Provost: Thank you very much, and good afternoon. Today I will share information with you regarding the University’s approved Operating Budget for the current 2018-2019 fiscal year. After my presentation, I’m happy to take any questions or comments you may have, and I’ll direct them to Mary Lou Ortiz, who’s sitting in the second row- the University Budget Officer. Just Kidding.
OK, I have about 17 slides, just to give you a sense. They’re pretty dense, but I’ll try to get through them reasonably quickly. The presentation is available, so you can look at it in more detail afterwards, but I’ll just hit the highlights– and of course, happy to go into depth as necessary. Penn State’s total institutional operating budget is about $6.5 billion dollars for the fiscal year that began July 1, 2018. That represents a 12.2 percent increase over the total in 2017-2018.
This pie chart shows the sources of Penn State’s revenue for the 2018-2019 fiscal year. Education and General Funds, which include tuition and fees, the general support portion of the state appropriation, and indirect cost recoveries, provide 37 percent of our total operating revenue. For the third year, hospital and clinical revenues exceed Education and General Funds. This year, it’s by about one-percent.
Auxiliary enterprises and restricted funds activities are self-supporting and largely externally funded. They also provide reimbursement to the University for the General Funds-based services that support all units. General funds for Agricultural Research and Cooperative Extension, the College of Medicine, and Penn College include their shares of the state appropriation, indirect cost recoveries as appropriate, tuition and fees, and federal funds specified for agriculture.
The General Funds budget comprises four main areas– Education and General, Agricultural Research and Cooperative Extension, the College of Medicine, and the Pennsylvania College of Technology. The Education and General budget, or E&G, is a subset of the General Funds budget, and it’s our principal area of focus today. The 2018-2019 E&G permanent budget includes an additional $55.3 million dollars in income, indicated by the blue bars, compared to 2017-2018. The tuition rate increases, presented in more detail on a later slide, provide $37.3 million dollars of that total.
The $6.9 million dollar increase in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s annual appropriation incorporates the three-percent growth approved by the General Assembly. Additional income of $10 million dollars comes from an increase in indirect cost recovery and the continuation of the plan to gradually phase out the historical E&G appropriation transfer to the College of Medicine. An additional $1.1 million dollars comes from the Student Initiated Fee.
Indicated by the green bars, expense increases include $31.4 million dollars for salaries, $12.8 million dollars for health care and retirement benefits, $12 million dollars for strategic investments, $24.9 million dollars for facilities-related needs, $1.3 million dollars for insurance, $4.5 million dollars for student aid, and $1.1 million dollars for these student-initiated activities as I just mentioned. This growth is offset by targeted cost savings of $36.5 million dollars, indicated by the red bar.
As the Commonwealth’s annual appropriations have declined, Penn State has become more reliant on tuition revenue to fund core expenses. In 2001-2002, the state appropriation, shown on this bar chart in green, made up 31.4 percent of General Funds. By 2017-2018, this had declined to 13.2 percent. As a result, tuition and fees, shown in blue, increased from 62.1 percent of income in 2001-2002 to 79.2 percent in 2017-2018.
This chart shows the Commonwealth’s appropriation since 2001, including this year’s total of $327.4 million dollars. It also shows what the appropriation would have been annually, if it had been adjusted for the Consumer Price Index, or CPI, which is the most conservative measure of inflation. You can see also that the appropriation was cut substantially in 2011-2012. The three-percent increase approved by the General Assembly for this fiscal year brings the appropriation closer to the levels of funding we saw annually from 2001-2002 through 2010-2011.
The 2018-2019 appropriation breakdown is shown here. It includes our general support line of $237.3 million dollars, $22.7 million dollars for Penn College, $53.9 million dollars for Ag Research and Extension, and an estimated $13.4 million dollars for the Hershey Medical Center from state and federal medical assistance funding. In November of 2017, we submitted to the Commonwealth our appropriation request for 2018-2019. That request included a six-percent increase in the general support appropriation that would have funded the 2018-2019 budget with no increase in intuition for Pennsylvania resident undergraduates, except for a 1.75 percent change to support the 2019-2023 Capital Plan.
Ultimately, the approved appropriation increase of three-percent, along with additional targeted cost savings, still allowed us to keep tuition flat this year for Pennsylvania resident undergraduates. Turning to the drivers for Penn State’s largest source of E&G income, this slide shows our growth in applications and enrollments from 2008 to 2017. The blue sections of the vertical bars represent baccalaureate applications for admission, while the yellow sections show graduate and professional applications. During that 10-year period, Penn State experienced application growth of 28 percent. The solid lines show enrollments– dark blue for residential instruction and purple for total enrollments, including resident and World Campus instruction.
We experienced a nine-percent enrollment growth during that same 10-year period, with decreases in resident instruction enrollment offset by growth in World Campus enrollments . This chart shows the publicly-reported resident tuition increases at several other major public research universities, including many of our Big Ten peers, all of whom have higher levels of support from their states. Our 2018-2019 state resident tuition did not increase from 2017-2018, so Penn State is shown at the lower right of the chart at zero percent. That is lower than the percentage of most of our public university peers, both within Pennsylvania and across the Big Ten.
Our undergraduate tuition rates reflect Penn State’s commitment to affordability for resident and non-resident students. Pennsylvania resident tuition rates for lower division students at University Park and at the Commonwealth Campuses remained flat in 2018-2019 compared to 2017-2018. The aggregate increase for non-Pennsylvania resident undergraduates is 3.54 percent. This is the first year that Penn State is taking a tiered approach to non-resident tuition rate changes, with increases ranging from 2.7 percent to 3.3 percent at the Commonwealth Campuses and 3.6 percent at University Park.
This slide summarizes the lower division resident and non-resident tuition rate increases percentages and dollar amounts per semester. Efforts to minimize tuition and room and board rate growth are reflected in a low increase in the overall cost of attendance. This slide shows the changes in total cost of attendance from 2017-2018 to 2018-2019 for resident and non-resident undergraduate and graduate students at University Park.
Moving to the Expense Budget, the E&G budget primarily is used to support and fund Penn State’s academic mission and the infrastructure needed to support it. Two-thirds of the budget is dedicated to student and instructional support, which includes instruction, academic support, student services, and student aid. Supporting infrastructure costs, totaling 27 percent of the budget, comprise the numbers for institutional support and physical plant. Smaller portions of the budget fund research, at 3.8 percent, and public service, at 2.8 percent.
The aforementioned changes to the 2018-2019 E&G Expense Budget fund high-priority needs, such as the University’s Capital and Strategic Plans. They also fund competitive salary increases, while still targeting opportunities for savings and efficiencies. This chart shows the changes in major expense categories– non-discretionary increases, discretionary increases, strategic investments, and cost savings.
Shown in yellow, non-discretionary increases include $1.1 million dollars in student-initiated fee expenses as noted, $2.5 million dollars for multi-year commitments to support graduate students, $1.3 million dollars in insurance, and $5.2 million dollars for operations and maintenance of new facilities, and higher fuel and utilities costs. The total includes $12.7 million dollars for employee health care and retirement costs. It also includes $1 million dollars in contractual salary increases for labor agreements that apply to Penn State’s technical service employees and campus health professionals.
Shown in green, discretionary increases include $2 million dollars to increasing the recurring pool of need-based student aid, $19.6 million dollars for deferred maintenance of our facilities and debt service related to the 2019-2023 Capital Plan, and $30.4 million dollars for a 2.5 percent pool to provide merit-based adjustments for faculty and staff. Shown in red is our total of $12 million dollars for investments in strategic priorities. Shown in purple, cost reductions totaling $36.5 million dollars include a combination of salary and benefits savings as a result of the Voluntary Retirement Program and a combination of capping and reducing the subsidy provided to the World Campus and University Outreach.
The total also includes increasing the tax that applies to the prior year’s revenue from Auxiliary Enterprises and reductions from central budgets that can be closed without having a negative impact on operations. Another way to view the E&G permanent expense changes is as a percentage of the base budget, shown in blue. Our cost savings efforts, which reduce salary costs by 1.6 percent and all other costs by 6.2 percent, allow us to fund non-discretionary cost increases and strategic investments.
Penn State continues to face the challenge of financing the renovation and renewal of an aging physical plant that has an estimated deferred maintenance backlog of around $1.6 billion dollars, as assessed by the consulting group Sightlines. Ultimately, the more we invest in capital improvements, the less deferred maintenance we will need to address later. Based on a two-percent investment of the estimated $7.5 billion-dollar physical plant replacement value, the University needs to spend approximately $150 million dollars a year to maintain the current condition across all of our campuses. The two-percent represents a 50-year replacement cycle for our facilities and does not include regular ongoing and incremental system-level maintenance.
The 2018-2019 budget includes $16.6 million dollars in debt service related to the 2018-2019 to 2022-2023 Capital Plan approved by the Board of Trustees in September of 2017. Also included are $3 million dollars for overall maintenance and $3.8 million dollars for operations and maintenance of new or newly-renovated facilities scheduled to come online this year. The E&G Operating Budget combines with capital plan investments to maintain the overall facility maintenance backlog.
To move beyond simply maintaining the current physical plant conditions and to begin to significantly improve these conditions, Sightlines estimates an additional $118 million dollars each year over the next two Capital Plans– so five-year plans– is needed. This would reduce the backlog to an acceptable level. The slide shows some of the buildings that we have identified as priority facilities to be addressed in the 2019 to 2023 capital plan. At University Park, 65 percent of our buildings are more than 25 years old, and 55 percent of buildings at our Commonwealth Campuses are at least 25 years old as well.
To wrap up, looking at some other key facets of our operations, the highest growth outside the E&G Budget is for Penn State Health at 12.8 percent. The College of Medicine and Penn State Health have an overall budget of $2.8 billion dollars. Agricultural Research and Cooperative Extensions’ $130.6 million dollars budget includes a 3 percent increase in the appropriation from the Agricultural Land Scrip Fund. Penn College budgeted $156 million dollars for 2018-2019. The Penn College Board of Directors approved a 2018-2019 budget plan in June before the state’s appropriation was finalized, and the approved budget did not include the appropriation increase of $662,000 dollars.
I know that was a very dense presentation. I hope you have time to review it at your leisure. I think it has to be number three on Michael’s list probably, but I appreciate your attention, and I am happy to try to answer any questions or respond to any comments you may have on the budget or any other things that are on your mind. Thank you.
Chair Bérubé: Thank you. Number three’s not bad. We can do it all in one day. Any questions? Jim.
James Strauss, Eberly College of Science: Jim Strauss, College of Science. Two and one-half years ago, I know that there were discussions at Board of Trustees meetings to fund these dirty dozen buildings with like a $2 billion bond issued. There were some of the buildings that were in two slides ago– Hammond, Osman, Willard Building– those. I was under the impression that that was approved, but maybe it was not. I guess my question is, where do we stand with some of the buildings that are on that slide that you just showed us? Do we have plans in the works?
Provost Jones: Yes. So, when we put together the Capital Plan, we looked at the types of buildings that we felt were priorities for this Capital Plan and constructed a plan that, in aggregate, would address those and other facility needs across the institution. We’re now in the process of– once we got the plan approved– basically, planning a detailed schedule for, in some cases, demolition and replacement of buildings. And yes, that includes buildings like Hammond and– Eric, do you want to say it, or can I say it? OK. That includes the demolition of Hammond, and–
I always have to check because Eric likes to say that too. So, it’s a priority. The buildings that were shown in the images there, those are buildings that we intend to address in this Capital Plan. I will issue a slight caution though, and that is that, since the plan was approved and we got cracking on it, because of the booming economy, we have seen substantial escalations in cost, both in labor and materials– order of 10 or 20 percent in some instances. And that’s without the scope-creep that you all usually try to stick into these projects as well.
So just dealing with those cost escalations is going to be a challenge, and Bill Sitzabee and his team at OPP are trying to figure out how to do this– how to get everything staged, how we get things aligned with the contribution we get from Harrisburg for capital investment as well, and to get this all done in a timely manner. These are all big projects.
James Strauss: [INAUDIBLE]
Provost Jones: Yeah, and I would just add, Jim, it’s not just Hammond– Oswald Tower needs to be demolished, the James Building needs to be demolished, Henning Building needs to be demolished. We got a list of buildings that really– I think because of their really deteriorated condition– it’s just not economically viable to repair them any longer. We have to demolish them and start from scratch. So, these are big complicated projects, and you can imagine when you displace the occupants from an entire building during that demolition and reconstruction process, it’s pretty impactful. And, so, this has to be very carefully thought through.
Chair Bérubé: Thank you. Over here.
Kirk French, College of Liberal Arts: Kirk French, Anthropology here at University Park. Are there any updates on the new building for Social Sciences, the one that’s going to, I think, go between Ford and Cafe Laura? I think that’s where it’s going to go–
Provost Jones: Oh, boy. Word gets around.
I think when we go through the capital planning process, as the President indicated, to get approval for the overall scope of the plan, we consider a lot of concepts, how we’re going to– so for example, for Oswald, are we going to remove Oswald Tower and then build back in that same location, or do we consider other sites? So, underlying the whole Capital Plan and the individual projects, is the notion of a Campus Plan– and in this case, for University Park– and how we optimally use all of the sites that exist around the campus for construction.
So that is a consideration for the– if I can say the Oswald replacement– rather than build back a location to build an alternate site. We’re still working our way through that particular project to figure out what is actually best for us to do. But that is certainly something that is being considered, and of course, if you build first and then demolish later, you can move the project along a little bit more quickly. So that’s why something like that is being considered. But we’re looking to take full advantage of all possible building sites on all of our campuses– not in one Capital Plan, but in this and future.
John Liechty, College of Business and Eberly: Hi. John Liechty, joint with Smeal and Eberly. And I noticed you had in the budget a mention of faculty retention or adjustments for faculty salaries, and you made a comment last year, if I remember correctly, about a strategic tool for assessing, I guess, salary inversions and issues of that nature. And in the spirit of, I think, faculty being perhaps our most valuable resource and perhaps the hardest one to retain here, I’m wondering if you could just give us a little more– I asked you in that meeting if you had any strategic resources to go along with the strategic tool that have come there. But can you tell maybe little bit more about what was found– how broad this issue is in terms of market compression for certain areas within the faculty? And does the University have a strategy overall [AUDIO OUT] or how to make sure we don’t get too far behind and keep ourselves [INAUDIBLE].
Provost Jones: So yes, and yes and yes. At the end of the day, it’s much more important for us to have great faculty and lousy buildings than great buildings with lousy faculty. So, this is probably our most important investment. We spend a lot of time talking about buildings because of their size, and a particular project may be tens of millions of dollars, but yes, an investment in faculty as our greatest resource continues to be our highest priority.
I will be sharing that tool with the deans in this budget cycle and having discussions with them about the investments that they need to be making in their faculty payroll, preferably preemptively rather than reactively. And we act reactively as well, but hopefully, more preemptively in the future. You would have seen in a couple of the slides reference to a $12 million-dollar strategic investments number. That covers a multitude of opportunities and needs across the University, including, for example, investment in Strategic Plan implementation priorities, but also investments in faculty and other key resources. So yes, the funds are available, and I will be working with the deans to identify– beyond the merit pool– if there are salary inequity or market issues that we should be addressing strategically. We are going to address them.
Chair Bérubé: Thank you, Provost Jones.
Provost Jones: Thank you very much.
Chair Bérubé: Come on back up. We have no Forensic Business, but we do have Unfinished Business.
Chair Bérubé: From the Senate Committee on Committees and Rules, revisions to Bylaws Article VII-Delegation of Authority, Section 1, Appendix D. This is the thing about faculty governance organizations electing their own chairs. As a change to the Senate Bylaws, this report was on the agenda at the October meeting. It will be voted on today. CC&R Chair, Keith Shapiro, will present the report and take questions and along with vice chair.
Revisions to Bylaws; Article VII- Delegation of Authority, Section 1
Keith Shapiro, College of Arts and Architecture: I assume you’ve read the report. I’m here to answer any questions, along with Victor, who’s Vice-Chair of the committee.
Chair Bérubé: Question back here. Bonj.
Bonj Szczygiel, College of Arts and Architecture: Bonj Szczygiel, College of Arts and Architecture, and I stand as a representative from a caucus in support of the proposed revision. A strengthening, if you will, of Senate’s original constitutional faculty-centered focus, I think. What we’ve noticed is that, over the years, we’ve experienced faculty governance organizational drift at this University, and I think this proposal seeks to address that.
The bottom line, to us, is that if there is any faculty governance organization delegated authority by Senate, it should be overseen by faculty, pure and simple. Especially if that organization is involved in curriculum review, because that’s kind of what we do. So, we see this as a really important housecleaning process, and more importantly, as a responsibility and an obligation of this elected body to uphold the integrity of Penn State’s faculty voice.
Chair Bérubé: Thank you.
Keith Shapiro: Thank you. Anyone else?
Chair Bérubé: This report is brought to the floor by committee, needs no second. Are there any other comments or questions? Are we ready to vote? Senators joining the meeting by Mediasite, you may cast your vote on polleverywhere.com. To accept the motion, press A. To reject the motion, press B. Poll Everywhere. Anna?
Anna Butler, Senate Office Staff: They’re still coming in.
Chair Bérubé: Sorry?
Anna Butler: They’re still coming in on Poll Everywhere.
Chair Bérubé: Thanks.
Keith Shapiro: We need a drumroll.
Anna Butler: OK, on Poll Everywhere, I have six accept.
Paula Brown, Faculty Senate Staff: And in house, we have 100 accept, four reject.
Chair Bérubé: Yeah, the motion carries. Great. Thank you.
Keith Shapiro: Thank you.
Chair Bérubé: Keith. Thank you, Victor. Oh, I skipped a page. Sorry. Yeah, that’s it for Unfinished Business.
Chair Bérubé: We have Legislative Reports, two today. The first is from the Senate Committee on Admissions, Records, Scheduling, and Student Aid and the Committee on Undergraduate Education, titled Changes to Senate Policy 42-98: Educational Experiences in the Armed Services. It’s Appendix E in your agenda, and Committee Chairs, Mary Beth Williams and Beth Seymour, will present the report and answer questions.
Changes to Senate Policy 42-98: Educational Experiences in the Armed Services
Elizabeth Seymour, Altoona: Hi, everybody. And we also are joined by Michele Rice, who’s the Director of Prior Learning Assessment. What you’ll see in this report is us cleaning up a lot of old language and old process to bring it in line with what we’re currently doing with Prior Learning Assessment. I know you’ve read the report, so we’re happy to answer any questions.
Chair Bérubé: The report is brought to the floor by committee, needs no second. Are we ready to vote? Mediasite Senators, you know the drill. Polleverywhere.com, to accept the motion, press A. To reject it, Press B.
Anna Butler: Poll Everywhere, I have nine accept.
Paula Brown: In house, we have 131 accept, two reject.
Chair Bérubé: OK. Motion carries. Thank you, Beth and Mary Beth.
Chair Bérubé: Second report is on the Senate Committee on Committees and Rules. Keith you’re back up. This is titled Revision to Standing Rules; Article II- Senate Committee Structure, Section 6(n) Committee on Undergraduate Education, Appendix F of your agenda.
Revisions to Bylaws; Article II- Senate Committee Structure, Section 6(n)
Committee on Undergraduate Education
Keith Shapiro: I would like to ask Beth Seymour to join us here and to help answer any questions if we have any from the floor. Are there any questions on this? I believe we have an amendment [INAUDIBLE] Yeah, if you could please.
Victor Brunsden, Altoona: So, this was as a result of a clerical error. The highlighted material was not included in the Senate agenda. This was, however, the language that was passed by the Senate Council, and is there to make sure that people understand that, in fact, the role of the committee, currently the Committee on Undergraduate Education, is not really changing. The committee is responsible for policies that affect all students and those that affect undergraduate students.
It is not expanding its role. This has always been its role. It is a recognition that this has always been its role, and the extra resource members and the like are being added to the committee to facilitate communication with other bodies, such as the Graduate Council. In fact, some of this was prompted by the Graduate Council itself, so there is no change in the role of either Graduate Council or of the Committee on Education. This is simply recognizing what it does, and in fact, many of these things are already in place in the way that it operates right now. So, this is a recognition that this is what this committee is doing.
Chair Bérubé: Any questions? Provost Jones.
Provost Jones: [INAUDIBLE]
Victor Brunsden: All right, yeah, we can do that.
Chair Bérubé: We should introduce a proposal for the creation of a Senate proofreading office.
Chair Bérubé: Yes. Dickinson, like Emily. There we go.
Victor Brunsden: There we go.
Chair Bérubé: And even still, we’re not going to get into the details of Dickinson Law. We’re just going to spell it right. Are there any questions? Are we ready to vote? Senators joining by Mediasite, cast your vote on polleverywhere.com. To accept the motion, press A, and to reject it, press B.
Anna Butler: On Poll Everywhere, I have 12 accept.
Paula Brown: In house, we have 129 accept, six reject.
Chair Bérubé: Motion carries. Thank you, Keith. Thank you, Victor. Thank you, Beth.
Chair Bérubé: We have no Advisory/Consultative Reports.
Chair Bérubé: We have three Informational Reports to consider today, and the first is from the Senate Special Centennial Committee, titled ‘Centennial Committee Progress Report.’ It is your Appendix G. Committee Chair Roger Egolf is here to present. Five minutes have been allocated for presentation and discussion.
Centennial Committee Progress Report
Roger Egolf, Lehigh Valley: Good afternoon. I apologize for my froggy voice today– getting over a little bit of a cold. This is a picture of a Senate meeting held on June 6, 1956. Not too much different than now. Notice it was on June 6. At that time, the Senate was meeting 12 months a year, once a month. The attendance actually was 70 percent of the members were there. This is actually from the Centre Daily Times.
Okay, what we’ve done so far and what we plan on doing– first of all, we passed legislation for a Senate Historian last month, and we’re starting to conduct oral histories, primarily with past chairs of the Senate, but also with other stakeholders, people who have had a lot of interaction with the Senate over the years and can inform us of the history. And as we do this, we’re going to be posting highlights of those interviews to a new Senate website that is yet to be created, along with documents that we found.
I’ve been spending a lot of time in the archives going through years and years of records- finding some very interesting things that we will eventually be posting. We’re also going to put some display cases in the atrium area of Kern to display some artifacts, possibly some places on the wall with documents in– so you can see pieces of our history.
For those of you who don’t know who this person is, this is John Martin Thomas, who is the President that instituted the Senate in 1921. He only served as President for four years. He had come from Middlebury College, where he was President. He left us to go to Rutgers. But this was a time period when universities all over the United States were starting to institute faculty senates and he thought we should join with the times and have a Senate ourselves.
Now, the Senate at that time was much different than it is now. I don’t have a whole lot of time to show you documents I’ve found, but I’m just showing you two. This is the top half of the first page of the very first Constitution of the Senate. And if you look at this, you’ll see that the makeup of the Senate was much different at this time. It was presided by the President, and the makeup was almost entirely administrators. Notice themes, directors of institutes, some department heads, and that was what the Senate was. Over time, it expanded and started including regular faculty, and someday, I’m going to give a presentation and talk about how the new Senate came along in the early ’70s.
The last thing I want to show you is, there’s been a lot of discussion in the last few months about studies looking at the percentage of faculty that make full professor at the campuses versus University Park. This is actually from the very first study that was ever done in 1981, and you’ll notice, we have made improvements.
At that time, only eight full professors existed outside of University Park– at the 19 other campuses– eight total faculty. That was four-percent of the faculty at the campuses, as opposed to 30.9 percent at University Park, where there were 235 full professors at that time. So, while we haven’t reached equity yet, the University has been making improvement and this is some evidence that shows that. They didn’t even have numbers for 1970. There might not have been any yet.
One thing I’m very interested in is, notice no rank. One hundred seventy-three University Park faculty had no rank. I’m still curious about what that means, but we’ll figure it out. Okay, I’m willing to take any questions that you might have, and I’m sorry about my voice today.
Chair Bérubé: Any questions? Thank you so much, Roger. It’s fascinating stuff.
2017-2018 Annual Report on the Status of Benefit Changes
Chair Bérubé: As I mentioned at the outset, we have a change to the agenda. The Senate Committee on Faculty Benefits and Joint Committee on Insurance and Benefits has asked to postpone their report until January because Greg Stoner cannot be here to answer questions.
Chair Bérubé: So, Appendix I— excuse me– we have a report from the Senate Committee on Libraries, Information Systems, and Technology, entitled ‘Reimagining Informational Technology’. Roger will introduce our speaker, Michael Kubit. Twenty minutes has been allocated.
Reimagining Information Technology
Michael Kubit, Vice President for Computing and Information Systems and Chief Information Officer: Thank you.
Chair Bérubé: Who needs no introduction anyway, but–
Roger Egolf: Yes, Michael needs no introduction. He’s been up here a few times in the past. But this is Michael Kubit, who is the Vice President for Computing and Information Systems and is the Chief Information Officer of the University. I think I have that sort of correct.
Michael Kubit: Thanks, Michael.
Chair Bérubé: Thank you.
Michael Kubit: Good afternoon, everyone. Thank you for the opportunity to come in and talk to you a little bit today about the future of information technology at Penn State University. I’m now just shy of two years in my service to Penn State University, and was really brought here, as you can see in this slide, to really advance an IT transformation across the University, through a shared vision, through establishing IT as a service organization, improving the effectiveness and efficiency of technology delivery, positioning technology to be a differentiator for Penn State, and ensuring that the University is protected from risk.
I think one of the messages that I really want to try to make clear, even as I start my presentation, is philosophically, for you to all to understand where I come from as a Chief Information Officer and as a Vice President. My job is to ensure that the information technology resources at Penn State are aligned to support our academic research and service mission to the Commonwealth. In short, it is my job to ensure that you, as faculty, have the resources that you need to do the important work that you do for this University every day.
So as starting the process to really understand this University that I joined back in 2017, I really started a process of discovery to really answer the questions or to ask the questions, what does IT look like across Penn State University? And, so, I think it’s important to really talk about what we went through in that process. So, the challenge, as I came into the University in 2017, was that it was difficult to articulate the use of IT resources across the University and what that actually meant– regarding volume both of spend, resources, personnel wise, and technology.
And so, we went down three paths. The first was to do a bit of a self-study, and we asked– with the help of much of the distributed IT leadership across the University– to answer some fairly simple questions about information technology and how those resources are utilized across the institution. We had some information back– very little of it was actually useful to make any informed decisions, and there was a little bit of disruption that we had heard sort of rumbles amongst the community that we were asking these very sorts of intrusive questions about information technology.
From our perspective, we were asking questions that any manager over a particular operation should be able to answer. So, we had to take another step and another approach. So, we brought in Gartner Consulting, and they spent about six months with us as an institution– worked with many of our FOs, worked with many of our distributed IT leadership– to really do a financial benchmarking across the University. And you can see in the report– I’m not going to spend time reading through– but there is opportunity for us to be able to mature as an institution in the way in which we leverage information technology.
Gartner actually positioned information technology as a practice at Penn State actually at their lowest level of maturity, which really indicative of having an IT organization that’s incredibly reactionary, that’s more focused on process than actually outcomes, and is really not positioned to support the strategic needs of the institution in teaching and learning, research, and service of the Commonwealth.
So, with that data, we basically pulled together 16 senior IT leaders from across the University and started working on a plan that we introduced to the University leadership on August 1, both at the Academic Leadership Council retreat, as well as the President’s Council retreat that was the week following. At the same time that we were actually processing this information from Gartner, as many of you may be aware, that the Board of Trustees brought in Huron Consulting to do a similar type of analysis across the University beyond just IT, but to look at issues related to adding additional value and cost to operate the University.
Huron Consulting essentially concluded the same thing that Gartner did in their study of the University, and the fact that there is opportunity for us to better utilize the IT resources that we have as an institution. So, we got to work on presenting a plan for Reimagining Information Technology at Penn State. And, as many of us are aware, before any major change initiative, answering the question why—why, is there a need to change or why is there a need to reimagine information technology– is important, and so this slide and there is a subsequent report available on our it.psu.edu that goes into more detail.
First and foremost is that Penn State, as a world-class institution and, as was shared earlier, a $6.5 billion-dollar operation, deserves a world class IT organization to be able to support the work that you do as faculty every day– that our funding model and our business processes must adapt to the financial realities. And I think even from what we’ve learned from President Barron’s presentation and from Provost Jones, is that we should not assume that more resources are going to be available to support innovation into the future.
How do we do better with the resources that we have today? And that’s really what’s driving a lot of this. The speed of change– you know there are many say that we’re in the fourth Industrial Revolution right now, because of the speed and the level of disruption of technology, providing across all industries is incredibly important. And I think we see this in our personal lives, and we can see it encroaching in education as well.
Our IT workforce must change, and adapt, and grow to be able to support the kind of technologies that we all need to use in our work here at the University. As a side note, the job profiles for the IT professionals at Penn State have not been reviewed since 2004. To give you a sense, the iPhone was introduced in 2007. So, it gives you a sense of where we are, as a workforce, to be able to support the work of the University.
We have many of the same challenges that have to be solved within private industry. And yet, in job profiles that haven’t been reviewed in so much time and competitive salaries that are 25 percent to 30 percent below market in an IT unemployment environment across the country that’s about zero-percent, it’s very difficult for us to be able to attract the kind of talent that we need as a University to solve some of these technology challenges.
IT has a very large potential attack surface. As you mentioned, one of my primary responsibilities in working with our Chief Information Security Officer is to ensure that the University’s assets are protected, both our data assets that’s done through our research, as well as the personal information that all of us possess across the University. Duplicative services and systems are robbing our capacity for innovation, and Gartner sort of outlined this in a number of cases– basically where those opportunities exist.
So, our guiding principles in Reimagining Information Technology is, where things are working well, we’re not going to break that. We want to respect the fact that this is functioning, and we want to build across and build upon that. Where things can be improved, we will work to find the very best solutions. So, our vision for information technology across Penn State University is to align our resources to support our mission and our strategic plan, to optimize our investments in technology and services, to create capacity, to support innovation.
What does this mean for information technology? It means moving from being provider to being an enabler of technology. Now, we had Ann Clements, who I see in the audience, came and presented to our information technology professionals across the University about a year ago and shared that, in the development of material for her students and for her courses, Ann uses upwards of 30 different applications and widgets to be able to provide that curriculum.
None of that technology is actually provided by Penn State; but yet, as a faculty member, she still needs information technology professionals to help her apply that technology and use it in important ways. That’s a very subtle but a very foundational difference, an evolution in information technology– really moving from an organization that’s predominantly focused on providing services to enabling and empowering the use of technology.
The second major shift that we really want to put into place with information technology at Penn State is putting people and process ahead of technology. And the fact that oftentimes, as technologists, we lead with technology, rather than taking time to engage and build relationships and understand your needs as faculty. Understand the processes that rely on that technology from an institutional perspective, and then applying the right technology at the right time, once we understand the needs of the users and the requirements of those systems.
So how will we know that we’re being successful as we move forward in reimagining IT? First is that we will improve the focus on the needs of each unit with respect to information technology. I think it’s incredibly important to emphasize the fact that this is really not a centralization effort as much as this is as an optimization effort.
If we do this properly, and I know that we can, we will be able to run commodity technologies at scale more efficiently and more effectively than what we can within the units, and that we can improve and align more resources to be able to support the work of our faculty, whether teaching or whether in research. Aligning our IT personnel and financial resources so that there’s professional management, and that there’s governance, and that there’s appropriate oversight in the University’s expenditures around information technology.
That we create a simplified IT experience across Penn State for our user community. That we create an organization that’s agile, and responsive, and can move at the speed at which technology is changing. And that eventually, we can differentiate Penn State through the use of information technology to attract faculty, to attract students because of the innovative ways in which we’re doing so.
So, our next steps in this plan– we have three actually. So first, pilot engagements, next is HR planning, and third is putting advisory committees in place, all off which will happen here early in 2019. So early adopters– we announced earlier this week that Finance and Business IT and Enterprise IT, starting in July 1, will actually merge into a new organization called Penn State IT.
We have pilot engagements, which will really be working with the deans and chancellors of those particular schools and colleges and campuses, to actually understand IT and to work with their leadership to understand how we can evolve IT to ensure that it continues to meet the needs of those particular units. From an HR planning perspective, we need to review and update the IT job profiles, including the review of jobs that may not belong in the IT job family.
We have two cases of this, and we need to have a broader conversation as a University community. Right now, learning and instructional design sit in the IT job family. There are those that are questioning whether that’s the right place for it to be within the University. We should have a conversation as an institution to determine where is the best positioning for those particular roles. On the other side, we have our multimedia professionals, often those folks who are graphic artists or multimedia specialists. Also, one might argue that those are not necessarily IT jobs as well. So, we need to take a look at that to make sure that the profiles that we’re reviewing represent information technology in 2019.
We need a workforce development strategy. One of the challenges that we have, being here in the middle of Pennsylvania and paying 25 percent below market, is our ability to attract the kind of IT talent that we need as an institution. So how were we going to help our IT professionals across the University grow and develop the kind of skills that are needed to be able to embrace many of the emerging technologies that we see today?
That we need a professional development plan, and we need to ensure that every manager within the IT organization across Penn State has the interest of their staff in mind, and they are helping them develop the skills that they need in order to be successful. And then we need appropriate change-management capabilities within the organization to help us move through this change as an institution.
We’ll be putting a number of Advisory Committees in place. First one will be University Senior Leadership that will really be advising me as the CIO as we move through this process. That we’ll be assembling faculty that represent the teaching and learning mission of the University to come alongside us and help advise as well, as well as our research faculty having staff advisory, student advisory, and having IT staff advise through this process as well.
This is part of a larger University engagement strategy. We’re developing a communications plan to make sure that the University community is aware of what’s changing and when it’s changing. We’ve dedicated resources to our it.psu.edu website that will have all the latest information with respect to Reimagining IT. We’ve committed to monthly webinars, both from my office, as well as other leaders that would be leading through this plan. Engagements with each unit across the institution– I believe we’ve already met with over 30 units and have conversations about what is reimagining IT mean for them; faculty engagements, much like the one we’re having today, staff engagements, student engagements, town halls.
We had a Reimagining IT Summit that we hosted on October 10, in which we had nearly 200 of the University community actually answer a number of questions. I think we had 2,000 responses. Pieces of advice, if you will, from the University community on how to properly manage through this process. So, stakeholder engagement will be incredibly important for us as we move forward. And that’s a message that I want to make sure that is delivered very clearly here, in this audience today.
So, any large initiative is not without its challenges, and this slide represents some of the issues that we have to overcome in thinking about information technology at Penn State. Now, this has all grown up organically over the past several decades, and it’s very difficult to untangle some of the things that have been woven together without necessarily an eye towards enterprise architecture or alignment of systems. So, this is part of the work that our IT professionals across the University will have to proceed as we move forward.
And lastly, in closing, I just wanted to comment that IT is– this is a new destination for information technology. As I mentioned earlier, this is not a centralization effort where we’re planning to pool resources to the center. That would not serve the needs of our institution. Enterprise IT has to move and change as much as any of the other unit IT organizations as well.
We have unlimited potential for improvement in the way that IT serves the needs of our institution, and it really is our vision to propel Penn State to really best-in-class in higher education institutions in the way that information technology supports the mission of our institution. So, I appreciate your time today, look forward to future updates, and happy to answer questions.
Chair Bérubé: There is a question already. Thank you, Michael. First, thanks.[APPLAUSE] And Mike recognizes Mike.
Michael Krajsa, Lehigh Valley: Thank you. Krajsa, Lehigh Valley. I agree with what you’re doing there. Probably next to the leadership and the innovativeness of faculty, in this day and age, I don’t think there’s anything else that is more impactful than IT– more so than the buildings and everything else. But I didn’t hear anything about 2025 in your presentation. Are you doing this in parallel, in conjunction with– are you going to be the leader of this thing? Because I can see how this could very easily become some sort of path. I just didn’t hear anything. I was just curious how that fits.
Michael Kubit: Thank you. Yes, absolutely. Much of what this is focused on is because of the vision of Penn State 2025, and as I’m sure you can appreciate, there is a number of implications of the vision for Penn State 2025- that have implications in how we position IT. So absolutely. In fact, in many ways, this is supporting– this is ensuring that we have a technology environment to support that vision.
Chair Bérubé: We have three. Keith. John…
Keith Shapiro, Arts and Architecture: Shapiro, Arts and Architecture. You had mentioned a possible repositioning of instructional design outside of IT. If not in IT, then where? And the second question I had—I will just sit down while you answer– what is commodity technology at scale?
Michael Kubit: OK, good question. So, the first, I think, related to instructional design. There are folks from the academic community that really should have some input in where that talent exists and helping support our faculty. So, it isn’t my decision to make, but we need to bring together the right thought leaders to address that and to make sure that that’s the case.
Commodity technology– the best example that I can give you is our recent move to Office 365 as an institution. Email is a commodity technology. It is not differentiating, which means students do not come to Penn State because of our email. It does not strategically differentiate us in any way, so we shouldn’t overinvest in that technology.
So, what we found, as an institution, we have 36 different email systems– the equivalent of almost 32 FTE running those 36 email systems. Now that we’re moving to Office 365, we’re actually able to run that application for the institution with less than five people. So, we’ve created a 12 FTE, if you will, of capacity that is equivalent to about 174 weeks.
And our technology investments, as an institution, are going to decline by about $600,000 dollars a year because the seven terabytes of storage that we’ve moved as an institution was all being stored on University servers, consuming University power, and air conditioning, and floor space. So, the value realization that we’re obtaining by addressing that commodity technology is one of those things that we hope to replicate. We’re seeing the same thing with our firewalls. We had 172 firewalls as an institution– same thing, equivalent of 16 FTE running those. We’re going to be able to run those now with maybe three people and be better protected as an institution.
Chair Bérubé: Thank you. We’re at the one-minute mark, but I’d like to take both questions– John and the person down here. John.
John Nousek, Eberly College of Science: Hi. Nousek, John. It’s on. Nousek, Eberly College of Science. The answer to Keith’s question was actually very instructive. I’d like to point out that I’ve been involved in information technology as a user for 50 years. And in that time, every revolution that you talked about produced, for me, very macroscopic improvements in my ability to do things as a user; whether it would be the internet, whether it would be personal computing, whether it would be interactive graphics– you name it.
What you have just described, from my perspective, may be a great improvement for administrators, it may be great improvement in cost savings. But the effect to me, as a user, has been to put costs on me to change what we do without commensurate improvements in any of the capabilities. I’m sympathetic to the idea this is a commodity, but I also want to point out that we’re subsidizing this transition, because we typically have work products like WorkLion– and you can name a number of terrible names that Nick does not probably want to hear– but have had substantial roll-out difficulties and required all of us to contribute extremely substantially to make these products actually work. So how do you address the problem of how do we get back from this investment that we’re making and improve the technology? Because I haven’t heard anything in what you presented that means I’m going to have a more powerful computer system. I’ve only heard that you had a less expensive, easier to manage computer system.
Michael Kubit: Thank you. Wow, there is a lot to that question, and I’m happy to try to do the best I can in the time that we have available. I think in many cases we have to make strategic choices with how we’re introducing technology to the University community. And I can’t speak specifically to WorkLion and LionPATH, but I can talk to Office 365. One of the benefits that we have of using Office 365 is we have the best threat detection now as an institution to detect malicious email, more so than the distributed systems that we had previously.
And the largest threat surface that we have as an institution is email. So, protecting the user community from clicking on malicious email– potentially compromising our credentials, or more importantly, compromising access to someone’s machine or someone’s research– is critically important. So, finding that balance between how we introduce tools to the University community that improve productivity. There is always a bit of a learning curve whenever we introduce new technology. How do we help, especially our faculty, move along that learning curve as quickly as possible and ensure that you have the resources that you need to be supportive through that transition?
Technology is changing. It’s constantly changing and evolving. I think we all see that in our personal lives every day. Keeping up with it is a challenge that we all have. And I think the challenge is– and that’s why this engagement with our faculty community is so important– so that you can advise us, and you can help guide us as we move through these processes, so that we’re not doing things that are incredibly disruptive to the work that you’re doing as faculty here at the institution.
Chair Bérubé: Last question.
Deirdre Folkers, York: Deirdre Folkers from York, and I’m not even going to touch Workday because my feelings regarding it thus far shouldn’t be expressed in an open forum. And I do want to thank you for your presentation. I think, as you’ve explained it, it’s very clear. It makes a lot of sense. My only hope in that is that you make sure that you’re engaging those of us who are on the campuses because oftentimes, access to resources– particularly, for example, virtual labs for classes– have been very different on campuses than here at University Park.
But I have a more mundane question, but it actually is germane to our mission, which is, we’ve known for some time that many of the students who are completing the work of our World Campus courses are not necessarily the students who have signed up for and who will be receiving credit for those courses. So, as we move forward, what are we doing to ensure that the students we think we have actually are our students?
Michael Kubit: Yeah. Thanks, Renata.
Renata Engel, Vice Provost for Online Education: Hi, I’m Renata Engel. I’m the Vice Provost for Online Education. So, we work to verify the identity of students in a number of ways. And we constantly look at ways to improve that, but right now there is sort of what I would call a triangulation process of ways that we look, both at times when they enter the system and the evaluations.
Now, I would always say that people who evaluate– faculty who evaluate students– one of the things that is important are those assessments, those types of assessments. So, you can think of some of those as the kind of project work that is being done. That’s under academic integrity. You can also think of that as some of the assessments we do for proctoring, also under academic integrity. But I think your question is really about the students who apply and come to Penn State.
Deirdre Folkers: Well, we know– I mean, I know of direct evidence of at least one instance– and I know that there are many more, but I’m giving you the one I know anecdotally– where basically, a course was being sold. In other words, a freelance website was advertising– and it was sort of depressing, it was only like sure $200 dollars– to, in essence, take one of the IST online World Campus courses. At this point, we do, as far as I can see, less authentication of students than I did when I took a Coursera course for non-credit because I wanted to be able to document the work I did. And that’s always surprised me. Our brand and our credibility are central, but–
Renata Engel: I’d like to– yeah–
Deirdre Folkers: So, as I say, how do we know that the student is really the person doing the work?
Renata Engel: Sure, so that’s another avenue in terms of looking. So, let me comment on this, and then I want to follow up with you more directly on this particular instance that you’re talking about to understand more about it. But in general, that instance– those types of things where people are advertising to offer to take courses is something all faculty need to be paying attention to, not just for World Campus faculty. Some of the things that you’re seeing are the same things that are happening with web-based RI Courses.
So, we met last year with Don Welch to talk specifically about that. And the things we are looking into for really combating that particular type of instance is the same kind of technology that we all use as faculty and staff into our system. It’s the Duo Authentication, which is one of the avenues we are pursuing right now to look at that. It won’t solve everything, and I think there’s a lot of vigilance we have as an institution. We need to be paying close attention to. But it is something that, I think, came to our light last year, and the way we addressed it was, in some way, some direct communication. We obviously work and process these through academic integrity processes, which makes sense to do that. But we do have to know about them, and that is important. So, if you are aware of things, I encourage you to use your academic integrity processes. And if there are particular cases that we can handle as University-wide in terms of awareness, both for faculty and students, as well as ways to combat this, then we need to also take a look. But we’re looking into the Duo. That’s the process we’re looking at.
Chair Bérubé: That allows me to put in another pitch for the Academic Integrity Task Force Report. Provost Jones.
Provost Jones: Actually, I was going to do the same thing. These are exactly the types of issues that the task force spent 18 months contemplating. And we don’t want to give the impression at all that the task force is focused-on centralizing the academic integrity effort because that’s not the case. But our ability to police violations of academic integrity has not kept up with the rate at which they are occurring.
And so many of the recommendations in that task force report are aimed at getting at exactly these issues and providing support and resources for faculty to help them, whether it’s online or residential. So, I endorse Michael’s charge to you all to read that report and help us make the recommendations more robust, so that we as an institution can really do a better job in this space. I have skin in the game because my name is on diplomas. And when I sign off on a diploma, and the President signs off on a diploma, we need to know that that certification is meaningful. It’s really important.
Chair Bérubé: And it’s not only the rate of violations and incidents, it’s the mode which you raise. And that’s why that task force report is precisely so important. I’m glad we’re all on the same page on that, now everyone- go and read it. Thank you again, Michael.
Michael Kubit: Great, thank you.
Chair Bérubé: I know we’ll be hearing from you in the future.
Summary of Petitions by College, Campus, and Unit 2017-2018
Chair Bérubé: Our final report is from the Senate Committee on Undergraduate Education– which I now think is called the Senate Committee on Education– titled ‘Summary of Petitions by College Campus and Unit 2017-2018’. It can be found as Appendix J, and this report will simply be presented on the Faculty Senate website and not discussed here.
NEW LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS
Chair Bérubé: So, is there any new Legislative Business? None.
COMMENTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE GOOD OF THE UNIVERSITY
Chair Bérubé: Are there any additional Comments for the Good of the University? None.
Chair Bérubé: Third question, may I have a motion to adjourn?
All Senators: So motioned.
Chair Bérubé: All in favor, please say aye.
All Senators: Aye.
Chair Bérubé : Motion carries. The Senate is adjourned until Tuesday, January 29, 2019.
The following Senators were noted as having attended the 12/4/2018 Senate Meeting.
- Abel, Jonathan
- Acharya, Vinita
- Aebli, Fred
- Ansari, Mohamad
- Aurand, Harold
- Barron, Eric
- Bartolacci, Michael
- Belanger, Jonna
- Berg, Arthur
- Bérubé, Michael
- Bieschke, Kathleen
- Bishop-Pierce, Renee
- Blakney, Terry
- Blanford, Justine
- Blockett, Kimberly
- Blood, Ingrid
- Borromeo, Renee
- Breakey, Laurie
- Brennan, Mark
- Brigger, Clark
- Brooks, Jordan
- Brunsden, Victor
- Bryan, Julia
- Burke, Alexis
- Casper, Gretchen
- Chen, Wei-Fan
- Cios, Theodore
- Clark, Mary Beth
- Clements, Ann
- Cockroft, Kevin
- Coduti, Wendy
- Connolly-Ahern, Colleen
- Conti, Delia
- Costanzo, Denise
- Davis, Dwight
- Decker, Alicia
- DeFranco, Joanna
- Duffey, Michele
- Eberle, Peter
- Eckhardt, Caroline
- Eden, Timothy
- Egolf, Roger
- Elias, Ryan
- Enama, Joseph
- Engel, Renata
- Evans, Edward
- Fairbank, James
- Farmer, Susan Beth
- Fausnight, Tracy
- Folkers, Deirdre
- Forster, Peter
- Freiberg, Andrew
- French, Kirk
- Furfaro, Joyce
- Gallagher, Julie
- Glantz, Edward
- Guay, Terrence
- Hairston, Synthea
- Han, David
- Handley, Meredith
- Hanes, Madlyn
- Hanses, Mathias
- Hayford, Harold
- Hosseinpour, Helia
- Hughes, Janet
- Jaap, James
- Jablokow, Kathryn
- Jett, Dennis
- Jones, Maureen
- Jones, Nicholas
- Kaag, Matthew
- Kahl, David
- Kakuturu, Sai
- Kalisperis, Loukas
- Katz, Spencer
- Keiler, Kenneth
- Kennedy-Phillips, Lance
- Kenyon, William
- King, Brian
- King, Elizabeth
- Kirby, Joshua
- Kitko, Lisa
- Krajsa, Michael
- Kubat, Robert
- Kunes, Melissa
- Laman, Jeffrey
- Lang, Teresa
- Larson, Allen
- Lawlor, Timothy
- Le, Binh
- Liechty, John
- Linehan, Peter
- Liu, Xin
- Lobaugh, Michael
- Love, Yvonne
- Lowden, Max
- Mangel, Lisa
- Marko, Frantisek
- Mathews, Jonathan
- Maurer, Clifford
- Maximova, Siela
- McDade, Kevin
- McKay, Zachary
- McKinney, Karyn
- Melton, Robert
- Messner, John
- Mishler, Adeline
- Mocioiu, Irina
- Monk, David
- Mookerjee, Rajen
- Moore, Jacob
- Mulder, Kathleen
- Najjar, Raymond
- Nelson, Keith
- Nelson, Kimberlyn
- Nesbitt, Jennifer
- Noce, Kathleen
- Nousek, John
- Novotny, Eric
- Ofosu, Willie
- Ozment, Judith
- Palmer, Timothy
- Pangborn, Robert
- Pauley, Laura
- Pawloski, Barry
- Petrilla, Rosemarie
- Phillips, Kathleen
- Pierce, Mari Beth
- Plummer, Julia
- Posey, Lisa
- Prescod, Diandra
- Pyeatt, Nicholas
- Reichard, Karl
- Reid-Walsh, Jacqueline
- Rhen, Linda
- Rinehart, Peter
- Robertson, Gavin
- Robicheaux, Timothy
- Robinett, Richard
- Robinson, Brandi
- Ropson, Ira
- Rowland, Nicholas
- Ruggiero, Francesca
- Saltz, Ira
- Sarabok, Thomas
- Saunders, Brian
- Scott, Geoffrey
- Seymour, Elizabeth
- Shannon, Robert
- Shapiro, Keith
- Sharkey, Neil
- Shea, Maura
- Shearer, Gregory
- Sigurdsson, Steinn
- Silverberg, Lee
- Sinha, Alok
- Skladany, Martin
- Sliko, Jennifer
- Smith, David
- Smith, Harold
- Snyder, Melissa
- Snyder, Stephen
- Specht, Charles
- Springer, Jake
- Sprow Forté, Karin
- Stephens, Mark
- Stifter, Cynthia
- Stine, Michele
- Strauss, James
- Subramanian, Rajarajan
- Suliman, Samia
- Szczygiel, Bonj
- Tavangarian, Fariborz
- Taylor, Ann
- Thomas, Gary
- Thomchick, Evelyn
- Thompson, Paul
- Townsend, Sarah
- Troester, Rodney
- Tyworth, Michael
- Van der wegen, Constantinus
- Van Hook, Stephen
- Vanderhoof, Carmen
- Vasilatos-Younken, Regina
- Volk Chewning, Lisa
- Vollero, Mary
- Vrana, Kent
- Wagner, Johanna
- Wang, Ming
- Warren, James
- Wenner, William
- Westhoff, Mikaela
- Whitehurst, Marcus
- Williams, Mary Beth
- Woessner, Matthew
- Wood, Chelsey
- Young, Cynthia
- Young, Richard
- Zambanini, Robert
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