Staff Senate Minutes - March 16, 1999
Employee of the Month: Carole Nelson, Assistant Director, Nebraska Business Development Center.
Present: Dennis Choplin, Shelly Fleck, Carol Hines, John Lakey, Kathy Livingston, Tim McMullen, Bonnie Mumm, Sue Petersen, Steve Robinson, Jane Sheldon.
Absent: Dave Bargen, Dee Ellingson, Mike Miller.
- Call to Order
- Adoption of Agenda (Livingston/Robinson).
- Minutes were approved as printed.
- Unfinished Business
- Annual Report
Mumm asked if everyone had received his or her copy of the report. All indicated receipt.
- Certificates of Appreciation
Mumm shared a copy of the certificate, and indicated volunteers are needed when presentations are made. Certificates have been awarded to the following:
Kate Murdoch - student who found returned money
Department of Psychology - recognition of University-wide Departmental Teaching Award
Scott Sands - quick action with emergency medical assistance
Kate Snyder - achievement of gold level in the well workplace award
Kay Horner - success of World Affairs conference
- Staff Senate Website
Choplin raised concerns about the information found on the Staff Senate website. It appears that some updates are needed. Robinson will contact Spellman to ascertain the status of information. McMullen will assume responsibility of the website maintenance in the near future.
- Committee and Search Reports
McMullen said the committee met recently. Among the items discussed was the awkward transition of Senate officers created by our current procedures. The committee plans to bring a recommendation to the next meeting. The group also will be reviewing a draft of the new handbook for staff, which will include several new/revised policies such as Family Leave and the Crisis Leave Bank. They will work with Human Resources on the refinements recommended for the handbook. In the future it is hoped that the website will serve as the central reference point for all current policies and procedures. There is concern, however, regarding equal access to the information. Finally, copies of the regent bylaws were distributed to the committee for their information.
- Strategic Planning
Livingston reported that at the last meeting Vice Chancellor Haack reviewed UNK's facilities master plan. Robinson reported the number of applications were similar to the last two years, but the campus hopes to close to a higher percent of matriculations. There was also discussion regarding the goals and objectives for the campus. It was felt the campus should do a better job of articulating strategies necessary to accomplish these goals and objectives. Costs may need to be identified as well.
- Technology Advisory Committee
Livingston reported that a brochure is being developed for future distribution that will promote the importance of technology as part of a premier learning experience. It will be distributed to prospective students. Procedures are also being designed for applications for funding from the technology fee fund. A webmaster should be hired in the near future. Training will be conducted in the next couple months for CourseInfo, a course authoring software. Work continues on the residence hall wiring project.
- University Budget
Mumm reported on sessions held recently on campus with President Smith and Mr. Withem to discuss the legislative process and the university's budget. Major items in the request include funds for faculty salaries (to reach peer mandate), distance education infrastructure, and the proposed Education Building at UNK. There was considerable discussion within the Senate regarding the status of staff salaries in the request. The Senate decided to draft a letter to Appropriation Committee members citing support of the university's request, and consideration for funding construction of the Education Building.
- Benefits Wish List
Mumm reported on the responses received regarding benefits staff suggested for consideration. This list will be forwarded to representatives on the u-wide benefit committee. They include:
- Family member scholarship program
- Vision care
- Long-term disability paid from pre-tax rather than after tax dollars
- Increase the amount of life insurance available at the employee's expense
- Payroll deduction for TIAA-CREF life insurance
- Professional staff sabbaticals to improve professional staff development
- Sick leave utilization longer than five days when a family member is in a critical/life-threatening condition
- SVCAA Search Sheldon reported that the committee has forwarded a list of candidates to the Chancellor, following phone interviews. She is not sure how many candidates will be brought to campus.
- New Business
- Strategic Plan Objectives
Prior to the Senate meeting, Mumm distributed copies of the five goals identified for the campus. Lakey provided draft concepts for Senate consideration to address objectives and strategies relative to performance management. Motion by Livingston and second by Robinson to forward the document on to Strategic Planning on behalf of staff.
- Staff Senate Image
Mumm asked what suggestions we might have for improving our image. Hines said the certificates of appreciation were a good start. Lakey said we need to better prepare members to serve on committees. Mumm said we need to explain our expectations, and make clear what the role should be when appointed to other committees. Robinson said that when serving on other committees, members need to understand the total mission of the university, not just our own turf. Sheldon said it might be helpful to mention our membership on Staff Senate when first joining a new committee, so others know whom we represent.
- Adjournment was at 11:50 (Robinson/Fleck).
Next Meeting April 20, 1999, 10:30 a.m., Art Gallery, Nebraskan Student Union.