18, 2003

Tuesday, February 18, 2003 - 3:30 p.m.
Wise Conference Room - Wallace Hall 213

I.  Roll Call

Dr. Richard Schellhammer called the meeting to order at 3:30 p.m. Dr. Schellhammer, vice-president assumed the duties of Dr. Janis Beaird, president, since she was absent due to illness.  Members present were Dr. Tina Jones, Dr. R.T. Floyd, Dr. Richard Collison, Mr. Mark Brothers, Dr. Mark Griffith, Dr. Tom Gonzalez, Ms. Ann Ketcham, Dr. Betty Cowan, Dr. Dwayne Massey, Mr. Jim Shelton, and Mr. Jim Todd.

II.  Approval of January 21, 2003 Minutes

A motion was made to approve the January 21, 2003, minutes by Dr. Mark Griffith to approve the minutes and seconded by Dr. Betty Cowan.  The minutes passed unanimously.

III. Old Business

  1. Other

Dr. Schellhammer asked if there was any other old business.  With no business, attention was moved to new business.

IV. New Business

  1. State of the University – Dr. Richard Holland

Dr. Holland announced that the Board of Trustees will meet on March 4, 2003.  He distributed a draft of the newsletter to be given to the Board to the Senate members.  Dr. Holland directed the Senate’s attention to the Academic Affairs section of the newsletter. He stated that SACS accreditation has been reaffirmed.  He noted that a follow-up report must be completed by September.  There are several items in this report that deal with the Board specifically. Next, Dr. Holland mentioned the online graduate programs.  He noted that as of now there are 49 students enrolled in the program.  Enrollment is open through March.  The continuing education program has also been reinstituted and is being directed under the School of Graduate Studies.  Dr. Holland said that plans to expand program are being made.  UWA has been funded for the second year in the National Youth Sports Program.  This is a $50,000 grant.  Last year, this program served 140 students.  The Fast-Track Employee Training Program is underway.  This program is geared to training secondary level industry employees.  These are 10-week programs of 400 hours.  Dr. Holland noted that Division of Nursing has had its accreditation reaffirmed for the next eight years.  Also 100% of the nursing student who took the last NCLEX passed.

Dr. Holland then turned the Senate’s attention to the Teacher Preparation Report Card.  He acknowledged the bad press that UWA received when 3 out 300 of our graduates for past three years did not score at least an 18 on the PEPE evaluation.  Dr. Holland said that all three of these individuals were ineligible for the PEPE evaluation.  Dr. Holland also said that a meeting between UWA officials and Dr. Ed Richardson, Alabama’s State Board of Education Superintendent, was held last week.  In the near future, the Council of Presidents and the Council of Chief Academic Officers will meet with Richardson to discuss ways that colleges and university may be more involved in this evaluation process.

Dr. Holland announced that our Fulbright-Scholar in Residence Program has been recommended for funding.  UWA is now waiting for further notification from Fulbright officials.  UWA has also received a grant for the Alabama Institute for Education in the Arts.

The University has recently completed a marketing study.  Basically the goal was to determine the image of the University.  The plan being considered is more direct marketing to promote the University’s image.  Dr. Holland said that the people who know us gave us an 89% approval rating, but the problem is that many people do not know who we are.

The Bell Conference Center will be dedicated on June 8.  This summer we have two conferences scheduled at the center with participants staying at Hoover apartments.

The renovation of the McConnell House is almost complete.  The guest rooms from Webb Hall are to be moved to this three-bedroom house with room for a caretaker’s apartment.  Financial Affairs will be moved to the Webb Hall guest room suites.  The Registrar’s office will also be reconfigured for better traffic flow.  He noted that there is a need to remove the institutional feel of that floor.  Plans have been made to repave the Loop road and a new parking facility for the Softball Complex.  He noted that it has been 20 years since the Loop has been paved.  A sidewalk is also being constructed in front of the SUB.  There are also sidewalks being added to Wallace, Selden, and Spieth Halls.  This represents some of the beginning stages of the Greenways Project.

Student Affairs has held eight counselor workshops to help schools with their scholarship questions.  Patsy Reedy, Director of Financial Aid, has attended these workshops to help with the completion of financial aid forms.  An enrollment report was also distributed to the Senate.  Spring 2003 enrollment is currently at 1878.  Dr. Holland said that one of his concerns is that the undergraduate numbers are down, despite the overall numbers increase.  He stated that he hopes that the efforts by Student Affairs and all areas of the University will help address this concern.

The campus is also showing an increasing commitment to outreach activities.  He reminded everyone that Congressman Davis now has an office on our campus.  He noted that Congressman Davis’ assistant, Kay Presley, has been in this Congressional District for 16 years.  She knows who to contact for grants.  On March 1, UWA will announce the establishment of the West Alabama Regional Community and Economic Development Center on our campus.  Fortunately, UWA has money in this year’s budget that can only be used for economic and workforce development.  Alabama Power, York and Livingston have also pledge funds to help run the center.  We already have the Small Business Development Center but this deals with a different audience and focuses primarily on one-to-one activities.  The new Center will work closely with the West Alabama Regional Alliance and the Commission on the Future of East Mississippi and West Alabama.  A director for the Center is currently been sought.

Dr. Holland reported on the Alabama Public Education Unified Coalition (Education family).  This Coalition consists of K-12, community colleges, regional universities, and the research universities.  In addition, Paul Hubbert and ACHE and Gordon Stone from the Higher Education Partnership are also working with this coalition.  This group is looking to the 2003-04 education budget which is projected to have a deficit of ca. $300 million dollars.

Dr. Holland noted that the University presidents have met twice with Governor Riley.  In these discussions, the Governor has made several distinct points.  Riley is willing to support more money for education if we have programs that are currently at the “best” in areas and have more programs that address the service needs in each area of the State.  The Governor feels that the universities must provide more service and that more efforts need to be placed on economic development.  The Governor does not want to hear that we simply offer degrees.  For UWA, we are going to have to document what we are doing to help make the Blackbelt a better place for the people who live here.  As soon as his schedule will permit, the Governor wants to come to campus and to learn about UWA and our programs.  He has never been to UWA.

Budget hearings were held with the Legislature last week.  A three-to-four percent increase was proposed for higher education.  The Legislature is very concerned about funding PEEHIP.  In order to fund this, a $130 million new dollars must come off the top of Trust Fund.  This has to be addressed first.  It was asked why universities are not part of PEEHIP and what it would cost.  UWA is the only institution in which the employees pay nothing for health insurance.

The issue of remedial education was also raised.  Several recommendations have been made that remedial education be moved to the community college system.  This is being supported by the community colleges, University of Alabama, and Auburn University.  This semester if this was in effect 340 of our students would have to go a community college.  Chancellor Johnson of the community college system has said he could do a much better job with this than regional institutions.

Another issue raised by the Legislature is that all types of education must have more interaction and serve one another.  In addition, the question of diversity was raised.  This is not a problem in our student body, but we are lacking in diversity in our faculty and administrative staff.  Dr. Holland noted that we have had a minority fellowship program since 1986.  We have developed 5 Ph.D’s from this program.  These students have come back to the institution and taught and then been hired away.  A new committee composed of nine blacks and three whites from the community has been organized to consider the problem, because in many ways the problems are more with the community than the institution.  Dr. Holland noted that UWA is not the only institution having this problem.  Dr. Holland said if we can’t find minority faculty members, we should bring minority professionals to campus to interact with students.  $15,000 of the Knight funds were initially set aside for this purpose.

Next year, a report card for colleges will be released.  Dr. Holland noted that it is important that institutions not be compared in the same manner.  The Legislature also wants to know when colleges would be ready for a Board of Regents.  The last item raised by the Legislature is what percent of our budget comes from the state.  Currently, 58% of our budget comes from the state.  Other institutions which show smaller levels of state funding receive much of their revenues from grants, contracts, and foundations.  We desperately need a grants writing to assist faculty and staff in pursuing more of these extramural funds.

Dr. Holland turned his attention to the Coalition’s report.  He directed the Senate’s attention to page 6 of the report which shows that with minimal tax increases that would generate at least a billion dollars for education without placing a burden on taxpayers.  The report also outlines the problem of funding in Higher Education.  Alabama spends less than any of its neighbors in higher education funding.  Page 11 of the report outlines the value of a college degree.  The report also outlines the requests for Higher Education in 2003-04.  Higher Education is asking for a one billion dollar capital bond.  At UWA, we have $18 million of deferred maintenance on this campus.  North Caroline two months ago passed a three billion dollar bond issue for higher education.  In addition to the bond monies, an increase of $350,000,000 is being requested.  An outline of how these funds are to be spent also appears in the report.  This also brings up the issues of accountability and productivity.  Dr. Holland noted the ways in which UWA is already held accountable.  Unfortunately, the handling of funds by some of the K-12 systems has thrown all of education in a bad light to the public and the legislature.

The last of the report summarizes the needs of higher education.  We need operating funds and capital funds.  Since 1986, UWA has received on average $214, 016 of capital funds per year.  For 2002-03, the ACHE formula should have provided $17, 491,600.  We are only receiving only 54% of this.  From 1995-2000, the state of Alabama has lost $906 per full-time student in funding.  The report closes by outlining the economic  impact of 4-year public institutions.

Following Dr. Holland’s comments, Dr. Mark Griffith asked if UWA is looking at a tuition increase for 2003-04.  Dr. Holland said unfortunately he sees no way around this.  But there is no way of knowing at this time how much this would be.  He added that other institutions have also announced tuition increases.  Dr. Griffith said that the business community feels that they are in a low-tax state, but the general public feels it is in a high tax state.  Dr. Griffith said if the tax is moved from sales tax to ad valorum tax we will go from a hidden tax to a visible tax.  Dr. Holland said our job is to convince citizens that we can help the lives of generations to come.  The universities are going to have to sell what we do to the public.

  1. Higher Education Day/ACUFP Meeting  – Dr. R.T. Floyd

Dr. Floyd distributed information about the Upcoming Higher Education Day on March 13.  He noted that the ACUFP meeting will also meet on that day.  There will be a bus for students to take students to Higher Education Day.  Dr. Floyd emphasized the importance of attending this event.

  1. Tax Reform Resolution   – Dr. R.T. Floyd

Dr. Floyd distributed a resolution passed by the faculty senate at the University of Alabama in Huntsville.  Dr. Mark Griffith made a motion that the Senate pass a similar resolution drafted by Floyd.  Dr. Collison seconded the motion.  The motion passed unanimously.  Dr. Griffith moved that the word unanimously be added to the document and Dr. Collison seconded it.  The motion carried.

V. Adjournment

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:55 p.m.

The University of West Alabama

Faculty Senate






















The University of West Alabama



Dr. Janis Beaird, President
Northport, AL

Dr. Richard Schellhammer, Vice-President
Tuscaloosa, AL

Dr. Tina Jones, Secretary
Forkland, AL

Dr. R.T. Floyd, Past President
Livingston, AL


Dr. Bill Ward
Accounting & Business Administration
Livingston, AL

Dr. Jim Todd
Computer Information Systems
Ward, AL

Mr. Jim Shelton
Livingston, AL

Dr. Betty Cowan
Elementary & Early Childhood Education
Butler, AL

Dr. Dwayne Massey
Physical Education & Athletic Training
York, AL

Dr. Louis Smith
Foundations & Secondary Education
Livingston, AL

Dr. Marvin Grant
Instructional Support
Tuscaloosa, AL

Dr. Nancy Kudlawiec
Fine Arts
Livingston, AL

Dr. Mark Griffith
History & Social Sciences
Tuscaloosa, AL

Dr. Lesa Shaul
Languages & Literature
Livingston, AL

Dr. Tom Gonzalez
Livingston, AL

Dr. Richard Buckner
Biological & Environmental Sciences
Eutaw, AL

Dr. Richard Collison
Physical Sciences
Livingston, AL

Mrs. Ann Ketcham
Demopolis, AL

Mr. Mark Brothers
Demopolis, AL

A Resolution

The University of West Alabama Faculty Senate

WHEREAS, the members of The University of West Alabama Faculty Senate are the official representatives of the University's faculty representing approximately 125 full-time and part-time faculty educating approximately 2000 students;

WHEREAS, the students enrolled in Alabama’s Public Universities are vital to the future of Alabama;

WHEREAS, funding of Alabama’s Public Universities is a constitutional responsibility of State government;

WHEREAS, the citizens of Alabama continuously identify funding of public education as the highest priority of the state, and;

WHEREAS, education funding at all levels is facing a crisis that demands immediate attention, and;

WHEREAS, every study and survey clearly show Alabama has the capacity to better fund public education, and;

WHEREAS, higher education in Alabama is especially underfunded, resulting in a continuing loss of quality faculty to other states, and unacceptable degradation of teaching facilities, equipment and library collections, and;

WHEREAS, this underfunding of higher education has a direct negative impact on economic development in Alabama and the prosperity of Alabama citizens, and;

WHEREAS, the citizens of Alabama expect and deserve an adequately funded higher education system;

NOW, THEREFORE, LET IT BE RESOLVED, that The University of West Alabama Faculty Senate expresses its strong support and advocacy of Alabama tax reform designed to produce a fair, productive and accountable tax structure that will provide equitable and adequate funding for all of Alabama public education.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT the Faculty Senate of The University of West Alabama unanimously requests the Governor and the Alabama Legislature develop and adopt specific proposals that will provide adequate funding for all of Alabama public education in a time frame that will preclude Alabama public education being permanently damaged by the looming fiscal crisis.

AND, BE IT RESOLVED THAT a copy of this resolution be sent to the Governor, members of the Legislature, and other interested parties as appropriate.


Janis Beaird, President, UWA Faculty Senate


Richard Schellhammer, Vice-President, UWA Faculty Senate


Tina Jones, Secretary, UWA Faculty Senate



Last revision:
Tuesday, January 20, 2009

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