Academic Senate Meeting Minutes
November 10, 2020
Steering Committee Chairperson Dr. Steven Dahlke called the third regularly scheduled meeting of the Academic Senate to order at 3:12 PM. The meeting was held through the Zoom platform.
53 votes were recorded at the time attendance was taken; 61 members of the Academic Senate were present during the meeting.
II. Approval of the agenda
Chairperson Dahlke used unanimous consent to approve the agenda. There were no objections.
III. Consideration of the minutes from the October 13, 2020 meeting
Chairperson Dahlke used unanimous consent to approve the minutes (Attachment A). There were no objections.
IV. Communications from:
A. President Christine Mangino
The Senate received President Mangino’s November 2020 report.
With instances of COVID ramping up, it is that much more important, President Mangino reminded, that we follow the protocols put in place to manage campus visits. CUNY’s Chancellor Félix V. Matos Rodríguez was planning to visit later in the week to see QCC’s protocols, thank those staff members on campus, and cut the ribbon on the new home of the food pantry in the Administration Building.
President Mangino is looking forward to giving the State of the College address on November 24th; in the address she will review enrollment, the budget, various initiatives on campus, and what she has learned since she began at Queensborough over the summer. President Mangino also looks forward to sharing her vision for the college.
President Mangino informed the Senate that the budget from the Chancellor is dire and that while she remains hopeful for better news down the road with a possible stimulus, that there will mostly likely be future measures taken to meet the budget deficit.
QCC has been working hard to check in with new freshman (there are 2700), and there have been almost 50 volunteers calling to check in with them. Students seemed to be doing well, but many reported issues of time management (balancing work and taking classes) and not being familiar with what a full course load looks like in an online environment. QCC will increase the number of counselors in order to more fully support students’ needs. President Mangino reminded Senators to be positive about our students, to continue to think about what we need to do as college to be student ready, to consider what we need to put in place to best help them, to make students feel as if they belong at QCC, and to report incidents and complaints through the established processes.
B. University Faculty Senate
Senator Tai added to President Mangino’s comments regarding budget by mentioning that CUNY Central distributed some of the CARES money it had been holding back (about $41 million) to be used at the discretion of Presidents and other administrators. Senator Tai acknowledged that the UFS has been discussing the concerns of members of the faculty across CUNY about the personal expenses incurred by teaching remotely. Senator Tai reminded the Senate that faculty should feel free to come to any faculty member who is part of the UFS to share concerns or pose any questions to Vice Chancellor Cruz, who will be attending the next UFS meeting.
C. Steering Committee
The Senate received the Steering Committee’s report for November 2020.
Chairperson Dahlke wished Senators a happy Thanksgiving and shared how grateful the Steering Committee is to be working with the Senate and college. He also thanked the Committee on Publications for their hard work putting the faculty handbook online.
V. Annual Reports of the Committees of the Academic Senate
VI. Monthly Reports of the Committees of the Academic Senate
A. Committee on Curriculum
There were three votes taken on the materials from the Committee on Curriculum (Attachments B and C).
1. A motion was made, seconded, and adopted 59-0-0 to approve seven course revisions (ARTH225, MA451, MA461, PH414, PH415, PH416, PH900) (Attachment B).
2. A motion was made, seconded, and adopted 57-0-0 to approve two new courses (CS102 and CS103) (Attachment B).
3. Speaking on behalf of the Committee on Curriculum, Senator Patrick Wallach informed the Senate about two new experimental courses (MA136 and MA136ALP).
4. A motion was made, seconded, and adopted 60-0-0 to approve one new program (Associate Degree in Physics) (Attachment C).
VII. Old Business
Dean Arthur Corradetti updated the Senate about the Academic Master Plan (AMP). The working groups continue to make progress on the AMP, and the group working on curriculum plans to bring faculty together to discuss curriculum matters. They want to continue the strength of QCC’s transfer programs while also updating the college’s career programs.
VIII. New Business
A. General Education Assessment of Artifacts Fall 2018 and Spring 2019
Dr. Ian Beckford submitted his report to the Senate as an informational item.
B. Resolution to Temporarily Adopt Current PNET Student Evaluation Form Pending Creation of New Form (Attachments D and E)
Senator Rezan Apkinar spoke on behalf of the Committee on Academic Development/Elective Academic Programs about the evaluation forms. This form was approved by the Senate for use in PNET classes and the committee has subsequently added a N/A column to account for categories that may not be applicable because of the hasty switch to online learning because of the COVID pandemic. The Committee is in the process of surveying faculty and students to determine the questions that should appear on the new form. The current form will be used during the Fall 2020 semester and possibly the Spring 2021 semester as well. A motion was made, seconded, and adopted 58-0-1 to approve the resolution to temporarily adopt the current PNET student evaluation form pending the creation of a new form.
C. Resolution Proposing a College Policy on Upper Seat Limits for Fully Online Classes (Attachment F)
During the discussion, Senators raised concerns about Chairs’ support for resolution and its relationship to budget concerns. It was suggested that the resolution be postponed and that during the postponement period, the administration consult with the Department Chairs about the special needs of their departments. President Mangino assured the Senate that the administration would be able to meet with Department Chairs and report back to the Senate by the February or March meeting. A motion was made, seconded, and adopted 52-7-2 to postpone the Resolution Proposing a College Policy on Upper Seat Limits for Fully Online Classes.
D. Chairperson Dahlke reminded the Senate that the Counseling Center has options for supporting both faculty and students.
E. President Mangino was asked about campus reopening and replied that the campus is open and is accepting proposals for more on-campus activity in the Spring. However, COVID cases are rising on campus and in the community. All proposals for on-campus activities are accepted through Department Chairs. Provost Lynch added that the Emergency Management Advisement Group (EMAG) looks at the requests for on-campus activities involving students. A Research Reopening Committee, chaired by Dean Palmer, will review recurring requests that do not involve students.
F. Senator Pecorino reminded the Senate that the FEC was holding a meeting for the purpose of electing a faculty member to serve on an appeals committee for complaints against faculty.
G. The President was asked to elaborate on the cases of COVID on campus: she replied that there were six cases involving either students or staff and reassured the Senate that there have been no outbreaks on campus.
The meeting was adjourned at 3:55 PM.