Getting to Know UW-Green Bay Conversations with Chancellor Shepard:
Human Biology
January 17, 2002

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I’m relatively new to UW-Green Bay, but I’ve been in Green Bay a long time.  I’ve been told by those in the community that “we’re the best kept secret” ­ hears that with regard to advising and quality of education.  Recently, once again, I heard that from someone who has a few children who have gone to different institutions of higher education, with one coming here ­ they are very impressed with us.

Chancellor replied that when he was in OR, he had heard about how we wanted to be separated from the community, but now that he’s here, he knows how involved we are ­ marketing issue.  Funny degrees with names people don’t understand.  Need to communicate how interdisciplinarity prepares students for the future.

I like what you say, but fear I suffer from misunderstandings ­ we’ve replaced faculty who’ve wanted those images you just described. 

I agree.  I have students out in the community with internships.  The businesses they are associated with are clueless on what we are about.  We need to get the word out. 

One of my programs is highly dependent upon the community (i.e. internships).  The feeling by some on campus is that we just send the students out ­ the students themselves were then clueless.  It takes clear expectations with regard to internships, it takes follow up, etc.  It’s time consuming ­ it gets to our teaching load, etc.

The Chancellor replied that with regard to work load and internships, there are professionals who can handle some of what’s required or necessary with regard to internships.  We may need to work toward that model.

Last year, there were a couple of efforts about changing the timetable (course scheduling).  Our view here in this department is that we try very hard to put schedules together that suit the students ­ our schedule is student driven.  Other agendas don’t seem to serve the students.  That’s troubling to us. 

Vice Chancellor Pollis replied that with the Learning Experience, there was an initial desire to create a block of prime time when no classes would be held so faculty could schedule meetings and so students could eat in the Union (as a way of increasing spending in the Union).  In the end, the committee learned they couldn’t unsettle what had been worked out over many years.

But it came back in the spring.  Why is it back?

The Chancellor replied that it’s not practical to set aside time for meetings.  He went on to say that fewer and fewer Friday classes is an inefficient use of facilities.  It also gets to student conduct issues with 3-day weekends.

In general, we need a mechanism of communicating between/among units.  I’ve been here 5 years and I’m still meeting people for the first time.  People I have things in common with and could learn from.

What is the future of tenure in the UW System?  Our faculty governance is rather slow to investigate what’s occurring elsewhere.

The Chancellor stated that it’s true, governing boards across the nation are discussing tenure.  We need to make sure the process is working well on campus.  The campus needs to determine the review process.

Vice Chancellor Pollis stated that she had a discussion on this with Unit Chairs yesterday.

TAUWP was discussed.  I always thought their newsletter was a radical voice so I didn’t respect them.  However, we had a complaint against a faculty member.  TAUWP sent a rep. here and I was really impressed, so I joined TAUWP.  A faculty member at UW-Superior got into some trouble.  He was eventually fired by the Regents for “not getting along with someone.”  That’s troublesome. 

The Chancellor stated that sometimes “not getting along” is code wording for discrimination ­ it implies “not one of the guys” (i.e. discriminates against women, granting tenure, etc.).

The Chancellor inquired of the female faculty about how new female faculty find their experiences here.

Response was that we need to define what being a member of team is and include it ­ it does impact the working environment ­ can’t separate work and home.

Response was that one of the reasons I came here was my general impression of the University ­ collegiality ­ and I have found support here.  We do need to work together to create an environment where people can learn ­ we do need criteria and we do need guidelines.

Collegiality is a good recruiting tool for our unit.  We tell candidates right out that we may not be able to provide this or this, but we can provide collegiality. 

I was overwhelmed by collegiality when I came here ­ they helped me set up labs, they helped with course work.  Tenure faculty in my department are very much interested in my welfare and in my success. 

We work very well with Natural and Applied Sciences.

With regard to the tenure process, the Chancellor talked about making a decision in the 3rd year ­ that if a person is not projectory to getting tenure, the decision should be made to let them go ­ provide guidance if they’re close, otherwise let them go. 

Feedback was, “I’d like to caution you because of the sciences.”  To get something (i.e. research and being published) to show here in 3 years is very difficult.  We have a relatively small group of faculty with a large class load - that makes it very difficult to come up with a good paper in 3 years. 

After this discussion, the Chancellor amended his statement to include “excellence of teaching.” 

Vice Chancellor Pollis replied that those coming up for early tenure are not from the sciences ­ they need funding, they need to set up labs, they need to find students.  When they do come up for tenure, their records are comparable across fields. 

The Chancellor went on to say that he and Vice Chancellor Pollis are discussing the tenure process with governance.

An issue I’d like to bring up is the number of ad hocs in this department.  There are 7 ad hocs teaching 7 different “required” classes.  Why so many ad hocs ­ that’s instability ­ there’s rapid change over.  It reflects on tenure, stability, teaching load, collegiality.  Will there by any changes in this regard?

The Chancellor stated that we need to consider areas of need, areas of flexibility.  If the university is going to grow, went into the dis-economy of scale story.  We’re using adjuncts temporarily until areas of growth warrant FTEs.  We do recognize it as temporary.

The response was that my job has been temporary for 5-6 years.

The university is very collaborative.  The science department is well equipped.  However, with our teaching load, I don’t have the time to do scholarly research ­ it’s very frustrating for all of us.  That helps us grow and learn.

The Chancellor replied that engagement is essential.  He went into the engineering example about how their education lasts approx. 3 years and then they need to be re-educated in order to keep up with their field.  At the university, we give people lifetime commitments.  We are relied upon to be society’s continual window on the future.  We can only do so by continually investing in our professional development.  With regard to the teaching load issue, no one will give us more money to do what we’re already doing.  We need to grow in order to capture additional funding.  The last time around at UW-Green Bay, we received $5,200 per FTE; other UWS institutions that played the game received $9,200.  That’s $4,000 profit to those institutions that took more students.  If we could get reimbursed at $9,200 per FTE, we’d have resources to address some concerns.

The Sports Center is beyond dismal. 

The Chancellor replied that we’re going after dollars to improve the facility.

Where are you on the Learning Experience?

The Learning Experience captures some essential needs and innovations. The Chancellor replied that the Deans are coming up with a strategy for commitment to interdisciplinarity, continuing innovation, integration with general education, etc.  

Due to the State budget, will the $500,000 be cut?

The Chancellor replied that nobody knows at this point.  Expect a lot of politics between now and final resolution.  Asked people to be patient.

Vice Chancellor Pollis replied that we’re moving ahead with the LE in regard to the 2003-05 budget.  We’ve dropped the piece about us as a smaller campus ­ we’re requesting to increase access. 

The Chancellor went on to talk about what he sees as a more important problem ­ the per capita income story.


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