UTMB Faculty Senate

April 13, 2009

4:30 – 6:00 pm



Present:  Drs. T. Albrecht, G. Anderson, V. Brooke, N. Cintron, B. Doucet, R. Fox, N. Garg, D. Heliker, C. Holzer, S. David Hudnall, M. Kanuth, D. Munsell, E. Protas, K. Sandor, G. Taglialatela, C. Utsey, C. Wigg and C. Wisnewski

Absent:  Drs. W. Au, C, Cooper, A. Hudson-Jones, R. Leonard, M. O’Keefe, S. Peloquin, S. Watowich, P. Watson and N. Wills


I.        Meeting was called to order at 4:36 pm.


II.      Approval of Minutes of February 9, 2009.  Minutes of February 9, 2009 were accepted as written at the meeting.


III.    Provost’s Report – Dr. Garland Anderson

·    Shriner Burns update.  Shriners of North America, is in a financial crisis due to loss of endowment funds.  Dr. Anderson reported that UTMB rents space from the Shriners’ Hospital.  However, UTMB owns the land upon which the hospital is placed.  When the Shriners announced that they were closing the doors, UTMB tried negotiating with them and since they did not respond to our calls, we filed a restraining order, to keep them from locking the doors. Our faculty need to have access to their laboratories.  UTMB feels that Shriners is under breach of contract, since they have an obligation to run and maintain the building for twenty years.

·    On Match Day, 98% of our students have placed and we have filled our residency program.

·    We have received donations from the Texas Medical Association and the Graduate School received donations from four national organizations.

·    To date, for this year’s incoming class, we have no one dropping out.

·    Homecoming is this weekend.


IV.    Dean’s Reports

Dean, School of Nursing – Dr. Pamela Watson (not present and no report provided).


Dean, School of Health Professions – Dr. Elizabeth Protas (written report provided by Dr. Protas).


Dean, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences – Dr. Hudnall for Dr. Cary Cooper (report provided by Dr. Cooper).

·      GSBS has opened the new Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (OPA), located at 3.316 Levin Hall, which will assist Postdoctoral Fellows with further research training at UTMB and will provide them with career guidance, job skills, advice for fellows, printed literature and a website.

·      Joanna Bremer has joined the GSBS as Director of the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs.  She is a 2008 M.A. graduate of the GSBS Graduate Program in Medial Humanities.  She will work closely with UTMB’s Organization of Postdoctoral Scientists.  The GSBS and Ms. Bremer will work to develop a certificate program for postdoctoral fellows that will provide documented, formal training and career development skills for the postdocs.

·      The GSBS participated with UT Houston HSC and M.D. Anderson to sponsor the annual meeting of the National Postdoctoral Association, held in late March in Houston.  Dr. Balaji Krishnan, President of the UTMB OPS represented UTMB at the meeting.

·      GSBS Commencement will be held on Saturday, May 2, at 10 am in Levin Hall.


V.            Grievance Committee Nominations

Since we had some faculty RIFed, we will need nominees to serve on the grievance committee; please send your nominations to Mary Schlobohm.  Mary has been asked to check with the members that are currently on the list to see if they will continue to serve on this committee.


VI.          Faculty Compensation Committee

Since we had some faculty RIFed, we will need nominees to serve on this committee, please send your nominations to Mary Schlobohm.  Mary has been asked to check with the members that are currently on the list to see if they will continue to serve on this committee.


VII.        Senator Replacements

Since we have had three senators from the School of Medicine resign or step down we will need to fill those seats.  We will review the Bylaws for the voting process; this may be by special election.


VIII.      Guns on Campus Resolution

We want to show Sys Fac support against the proposed changes in concealed gun laws and Dr. Wisnewski will send out an email for the Senators to vote for or against the gun resolution.


IX.          New Business

·    One of the Senators inquired as to why the March meeting was cancelled and Dr. Hudnall responded stating that he was out of town so he cancelled the March meeting.

·    The SON is reviewing their Post Tenure Review procedures and would like to bring this to the Faculty Senate.  It was agreed that Dr. Heliker will send their PTR to the Faculty Quality Committee and they will do a comparative analysis and then present to the Faculty Senate.

·    Review of IHOP.  At the April Leadership meeting with Dr. Callender, he asked for the Faculty Senate to consider reviewing the IHOP, in regards to faculty issues to see if it is possible to condense, consolidate and eliminate some of the policies.  The IHOP Committee will look over policies affecting faculty to see if there can be some changes, then the Faculty Senate will vote on and approve changes.  The next step is to send the changes on to the Council of Deans.


X.            Past Chair Comments

·    There was a SysFac meeting on Friday.  AAUP, RIF and future issues such as MD Anderson were discussed.  Legislation is pending for the licensed concealed handguns other than cars.  Mostly they were opposed and the document is being forwarded to the appropriate people.


XI.          Chair Comments

·    The Ombudsman to date has two applications both from UTMB and currently the position states they cannot be from UTMB.  Dr. Callender suggested that we look at the wording of the position.  It was indicated from a Senator that MD Anderson has Ombudsman from within the organization.  We need to review the position requirements and Dr. Hudnall will send to Dr. Fox, Chair of the Governance Committee for the committee to review the position requirements.


XII.      Subcommittee Reports

Nisha Garg, chair of the Academic and Administrative Affairs Committee gave the results from their RIF current status report and is indicated below:


Total 43 responses

             16 appealed

             15 not appealed

             1 did not decide (was not clear about the procedure)

             1 asked for emeritus status

             10 did not mention anything about appeal (early retirement)


All are either seeking jobs, and some are considering early retirement.  2 have asked to be removed from mailing list.  At least 13 additional faculties have left UTMB after the RIF announcements (this data is not complete. Information is provided by other RIFed faculties).


Common themes:

Still working at UTMB in their respective position.

Those who appealed have not been able to receive sufficient detailed information requested from UTMB.

No reason given why their job was terminated and why they were singled out.

Selection criteria not clear, favoritism, age discrimination, teaching and service was ignored versus research funding.

Devastation, shocking, effects on family, depression.

Some also lost VISA status, and have to go back to home country without any benefits, job, and insurance.

Spouse also lost job.



Does financial exigency still exist? Are faculties be rehired as UTMB receives monies from FEMA and other sources.



A motion for adjournment was made and seconded.  Meeting adjourned at 6:01 pm.