UTMB Faculty Senate

UTMB Faculty Senate
July 11, 2005
Caduceus Room 4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.


Senators Present: J. Alperin; S. Ayachi; C. Baker; M. Best; C. Boodley; B. Budelmann (Chair); A. Cass; J. Gallagher; P. Gallagher; M. Kanz; R. Lederman (Past Chair); H. Li; M. McGinnis; R. Moore (ex-officio); K. Mossberg; C. Phillips; L. Primeau; R. Rahr; K. Rasmussen; P. Watson (ex-officio); M. Winter (Chair Elect).

I. Approval of Agenda of 07/11/05

II. Approval of Minutes of 06/13/05

III. Chair’s Comments – Dr. Budelmann

• Dr. Stobo is in Washington and is unable to attend the Senate meeting. His “Austin Update” (see minutes of June 11, 2005) is postponed to the August 8 Senate meeting.
• John Dallas (SOM) will be leaving UTMB. Dr. Budelmann thanked him for his service as senator. He will be replaced on the Senate during the upcoming election of new senators in August.

IV. Chair-Elect Comments – Dr. Winter

• June 2 and 3 Faculty Advisory Council Meeting in Austin – a physician was unjustly accused at UT – MD Anderson. Copyright – Rules and regulations for basic science faculty. Office of General Counsel website www.utsystem.edu/ogc
• Students/Faculty – UT System Dating Services is a series of databases. The first database is a recruitment tool of juniors and seniors in the UT System. The second database is completely voluntary and encourages the possible collaboration of faculty. It also lists events and conferences. The third database is UT Austin’s Eureka site that is still in the development stage. Roll-out is expected in September.
• Graduation rates within the UT System are a major problem to the legislators. The 4-year graduation rate is currently listed at 4.8% for UT El Paso, which does not give an accurate indication as not all students take a full load.
• State legislators are concerned about the value of an undergraduate education. A study is currently underway to evaluate the value of an undergraduate education. UT Austin was unable to recruit enough freshman students to take a test designed to address this issue. Three campuses did not have data in on time for the final analysis. It is hoped the data will be available at the next FAC meeting.
• UT Dallas and the UT Health Science Center San Antonio now have policies in place to retain tenure for part-time faculty.

V. Biosafety Level 4 Laboratory – Dr. Barrett

A PowerPoint presentation was given by Dr. Alan Barrett, explaining the events of June 23, 2005 in the BSL 4 Laboratory. The BSL4 laboratory had been “down” since May 19, 2005, and was undergoing routine decontamination and maintenance. On June 23, 2005, the alarm went off at approximately 9:00 a.m. when the door from the fumigation room to the buffer corridor slightly opened. The event happened as the direct result of activities of a maintenance contractor working on the containment system controls during the shutdown period. The magnet to two internal doors de-energized due to a loss of power. The doors were closed immediately and staff vacated the facility and contacted the Biosafety Officer. Given the period of time since the lab was in use and since it had been decontaminated, there was no possibility for infection. No staff members have reported related fevers or headaches. The maintenance protocol has been modified, and the door control systems have been appropriately reprogrammed. The Galveston Fire Marshall has approved the change and other maintenance checks continue. The BSL 4 will not go hot until University administration is satisfied it understands exactly what occurred and how to prevent it in the future. Under the University's policy of transparency in its containment operations, President Stobo informed the community about this event.

VI. PeopleSoft Update – Rhonda Lewis

Rhonda Lewis advised the Faculty Senate that the PeopleSoft Upgrade went live five business days ago. The majority of calls received has been straight forward and could easily be resolved. The PeopleSoft Project Team describes the implementation as successful and quiet. They are working on lessons learned. Calling the Help Desk can increase resolution of any problems. PeopleSoft weekly updates are being emailed. Users should clear cache. If this is not done, it can slow response time. The PeopleSoft team is tracking and identifying trends; however, this cannot be done if problems are not reported. A dedicated team of four trainers are working on tools to improve the training programs.

VII. Senate Business

• Election of Faculty Senate Chair-Elect. Since the last Senate meeting, the Chair received nominations of Drs. Thomas Albrecht (GSBS) and Christine Baker (SAHS) for the position of “Chair-elect”. He asked for additional nominations from the floor; none were made. Since Dr. Albrecht could not attend the Senate meeting today (because of a family emergency) and was unable to provide a written statement to be read, only Dr. Baker gave her statement. A motion to postpone the election until the next Senate meeting was made, and a longer discussion followed. The motion did not pass. Written voting took place with two faculty senate members tallying the votes. Dr. Christine Baker was announced as the new Faculty Senate Chair-Elect.

• Senators and Faculty Concerns – Update

No new concerns were received.

• Committee Reports
Governance: No report.
Acad. & Adm. Affairs: No report.
Faculty Quality: Dr. Baker gave an update on the Faculty Club and advised the Faculty Senate that she would have a PowerPoint presentation at the next meeting. The unofficial opening of the club is August 8 with the Grand Opening taking place on August 24. The Office of University Advancement will be sending out official invitations to the opening. The Faculty Club will be open Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. A continental light breakfast and lunch will be available with snacks in the afternoon. The Club can also be booked for after hour events after 7:00 p.m. Monthly dues will not be collected until November. The dues will be in the ten to twenty-five dollar range per month. Senators are encouraged to promote the Club.

Meeting adjourned at 6:03 p.m.

Committee Meetings followed.

Next Faculty Senate Meeting: August 8, 2005.