UTMB Faculty Senate

June 14, 2010

4:30 – 6:00 pm



Present:  Drs. Wisnewski, Chair, I. Boldogh, V. Brooke, C. Cooper, Y. Davila, S. Gerik, S. Jain, C. Jansen, M. Kanuth, J. LeDuc, L. Massey, N. Mendias, D. Munsell, M. O’Keefe, D. Powell, E. Protas, K. Sandor, P. Singh, E. Smith, A. Torres, C. Utsey, P. Watson and C. Wigg


Absent:  Drs. J. Broussard, E. Hannigan, S. Higgs, S. Petronella, D. Solanki, H. Spratt and S. Watowich


Special Guest:  Amanda Porter, Director, Compensation and Benefits, Tony Edmond, Benefits Services, Senior Manager and Chris Packard, VP Marketing


I.      The meeting was called to order at 4:35 pm by Charlotte Wisnewski, Faculty Senate Chair.


II.    Approval of Minutes of May 10, 2010.  Minutes of May 10, 2010, were accepted as written and voted on by email.


III.  Provost’s and Dean’s Report – Dr. Watson reporting on behalf of Dr. Anderson

·     Dr. Watson announced that the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) delegates voted and censured UTMB.  They also censured Clark Atlanta University and Antioch University.  Dr. Watson stated that Clark Atlanta University had terminated the appointments of fifty-five full-time faculty members, approximately one-fourth of the total faculty, with no notice and four weeks of unconditional severance salary.  Dr. Watson had copies of their reports available.  Dr. Watson also reported that UT System has not responded to the AAUP.

·     Dr. Watson also reported from Mr. Kirkpatrick, Associate VP for Acad. Res. and Dir. Libraries, of some renovations in the library: reupholstered furniture, additional outlets for laptops and cell phones and users can print for a fee from their wireless computers.


Dean, School of Nursing and Vice President for Education – report provided by Dr. Watson.

     School of Nursing Dean’s and UTMB Vice President for Education Reports


Dean, School of Health Professions – report provided by Dr. Protas.

     School of Health Professions Dean’s Report

Dean, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences – report provided by Dr. Cooper.
Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences Dean’s Report

·      Discussion from Dr. Cooper’s report with concern over the amount of time it takes to get a badge for students which limits their access to buildings; the senators were concerned since the SURP students were already in their 2nd week of their 10 week session.  Dr. Pamela Watson volunteered to investigate this problem.


IV. Health Benefits – Amanda Porter, Director, Compensation and Benefits, Tony Edmond, Benefits Services, Senior Manager

·      Amanda and Tony distributed a handout of the University of Texas System Office of Employee Benefits, Benefit Plan Design Changes for FY2011 and here are some highlights from their report:

·      January 1, 2011 – UT Flex Medical Expenses Reimbursement Account – elimination of Over-The-Counter (OTC) medicines and supplies unless it is insulin or prescribed by a physician.

·      September 1, 2011 – UT Medical Plan (UTSELECT) – Coverage for young adults (changed from dependents 25 years of age to 26 years of age (married or single).

·      September 1, 2012 – UT Flex Medical Expense Reimbursement Account – Reduction in maximum annual contributions from $5,000 to $2,500.

·      September 1, 2014 – UT Medical Plan (UTSELECT) – Reduction of the State mandated waiting period for newly eligible employees and their families from up to 120 days to a 90 day maximum.





Fully-insured Dearborn National Life Insurance and AD&D Program: Represents an 11.2% decrease over the current rates and a premium savings of $16.7 million over 6 years guaranteed rates.  A portability feature has been added to the plan.  With the added feature and contract the Basic Life and AD&D coverage amount increased for active employees from $10,000 to $20,000 and for Retirees Life only from $3,000 to $6,000 with an option to elect Retiree Spousal Life coverage of $3,000 at a monthly cost of $1.83 (Evidence of Insurability may apply, if prior coverage was not elected).

UT Flex Flexible Spending Accounts:  No change in annual limits for FY2011 will occur.  Enrollment in FSA Debit Card will continue to include a $9.00 debit card fee.  There will be a small monthly administrative fee of $1.00 per account, $12.00 annually.

Self-Funded UT Select Dental:  No changes to the plan design, but the monthly rates will increase by a range of $.90 to $2.97. 

Fully-insured Dearborn National Short Term Disability and Long Term Disability:  No change in plan design or premium

Fully-insured CNA Long-Term Care:   No change in plan design or monthly premium.

Fully-insured Assurant HMO Dental:  No change in plan design or monthly premium. 

Fully-insured Superior Vision:  No change in plan design or monthly premium


Dr. Wisnewski explained that according to Regents’ Rules, the governing faculty assembly body of the University is offerered the opportunity to have input into changes to the health benefits plan. A suryey was sent out by Dr. Wisnewski in May in which faculty senators were asked to respond to changes.

Multiple questions were asked by Senators and responded to by the presenters.  Dr. Wisnewski also serves on the Health Affairs subcommittee at Sys FAC which also looks at the University as a whole and our health benefits.


V.  New UTMB Logo – Chris Packard, Associate VP for Marketing

Mr. Packard presented a PowerPoint presentation.  The new logo is expected to be launched around fall 2010, (with UT System approval).  Some highlights from his presentation: 

UTMB’s New Brand Identity.  UTMB needs a contemporary, memorable brand that positions us for success as we head into an important legislative session and largest fund-raising campaign in our history.  Also to convey that everything we do (education, research, patient care) is focused on a single mission:  improving health.  The Richards Group recommends UTMB + a brand descriptor.  UTMB builds upon heightened regional and statewide awareness post-ike.  UTMB preserves bond with donors, alumni, friends, community (“Medical Branch will remain part of the official name and history).  Health is a simple description of our mission, whatever the role.  UTMB Health = the recommended “master” brand and utmb in lower case gives a logo with more personality and is perceived as more progressive.  The biggest anticipated cost:  signage and way finding, since much has changed with our campus footprint and much has to be replaced.  Currently we are working with The Richards Group on aggressive marketing communications campaign for FY11.   


IV. Reports by Faculty Senate Officers/Chairs

·      Dr. Wisnewski reminded the Senators of the elections.  The chair elect (rotates in the four schools) and GSBS is the next school in line for having the chair elect position; theoretically according to bylaws the SOM could also have the chair elect position. Everyone should start thinking about elections and Dr. Wisnewski asked for any suggestions.  The chair-elect attends the Sys Fac meetings which are held in Austin and are two days each and the meetings occur three to four times a year.

·      Faculty Senate Elections.  The SON and SHP have held their elections, the SOM will be sending out their ballot tomorrow.  Dr. Cooper announced that Angie is currently working on her GSBS faculty list. 

·      Dr. Jansen asked about the nominating of senators to the subcommittees; on her committee that she chairs, all senators were new  and Dr. Jansen suggested when the time comes for senators signing up on these subcommittees, that the chair review and not have all new senators serving in one committee.

·      Dr. Wisnewski stated that Dr. Chris Baker will be stepping down from the Academy of Master Teachers as the Faculty Senate Representative.  Dr. Levine and Dr. Wisnewski met and mentioned that faculty replacement should not be a primary educator and not a member of the Academy.  

·      Dr. Wisnewski stated that at the last Sys FAC meeting, a couple of months ago in Austin that Dr. Cigarroa attended. He said “One of the things we need to do is maintain a balance between ensuring student success, maintaining academic rigor and excellence.”   Most of the meeting pertained to academic UT campuses but Dr. Shine did talk about financial exigency and the AAUP.  A senator asked about a copy and Dr. Wisnewski indicated that she thought she had sent it out but will send out again by email; however it is the draft copy and she had recently inquired about receiving a final version. The final report will be sent to all faculty Senators when we get it.

·      Dr. Wisnewski informed the senators about the upcoming Annual Luncheon on September 13.

·      Dr. Utsey stated that she would update the tracking form to include motion regarding “the badges in GSBS.”

·      Dr. Jansen reported for the Academic and Administrative Affairs Committee:  They are working on international contracts dealing with vendors for laboratory equipment.

·      Dr. Wigg reported for the Governance Committee:  Nothing to report.

·      Dr. Munsell reported for the IHOP Committee:  For faculty policies the school of Nursing and Health Professions have responded and another email will be sent tomorrow to the school of medicine and graduate school of biomedical science for them to have another opportunity to respond.   

·      Dr. Sandor reported for the Faculty Quality Committee:  They are working on a letter addressed to the Administration to respond to the June 12 AAUP report in which UTMB has been censured.  Dr. Wisnewski indicated that the committee will need to present the letter to the Faculty Senate for vote.


A motion for adjournment was made, seconded and approved.  Meeting adjourned at 5:50 pm.  The Committees met following the general meeting.