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We have come to the end of our first semester as the officers of your Faculty Organization. It has been a busy fall, and the spring promises to be even busier.

We owe our thanks to Charlie Thomas for setting up our new Web site.  Did you notice the URL in the NEWS graphic for this column?  Check it out!  As you will see, this site is still under construction.  Your suggestions are welcome.

The Faculty Senate meets regularly at 3:30 p.m. on the first and third Tuesdays of each month. Our next meeting will be on February 4 in LSC Conference Room 2.  All faculty are welcome to attend any Senate meeting, so feel free to drop in for a visit.  If you are still confused by the distinction between The Faculty Organization and The Faculty Senate, then read more about both on our Web site

The new college planning committees are beginning to function, and the faculty representatives are beginning to "get their feet wet" as they learn to work cooperatively in these new structures:

  • Strategic Planning Council:  Eldon Baldwin, Carl Karlsson, and Anne King
  • Budget Advisory Committee:  Charles Borek and Daniel Jones
  • Technology Planning Committee:  George Perkins and Mary Helen Spear
  • Learning Centered Planning Committee:  Eldon Baldwin, John Bartles, Angela Rhoe, and Scott Sinex
  • Facilities Planning Committee:  Charles Thomas and Elizabeth Holden Wagenheim
  • College Salary and Benefits Committee:  Angie Anderson and Cynthia Gossage

Adjunct faculty are beginning to assume more visible roles in college governance.  During its December meeting, the Senate appointed an Ad Hoc Bylaws Revision Committee that is composed of both full-time and adjunct faculty.  Ray Harris is the committee convener, and its members currently include: Barbara Abdul-Karim, Jerry Shelton, Kimberly Veney, Brenda Teal, and Mitra Baral.  Ray is looking for additional full-time and adjunct faculty committee members to represent faculty in other areas of the college.  Please contact Ray directly if you want to volunteer.

According to The Faculty Senate Bylaws, adjunct faculty are currently nonvoting members of The Faculty Organization.  The general charge for this new ad hoc committee is to update the bylaws, including its provisions regarding adjunct faculty.  All proposed changes to the bylaws will be discussed by the Faculty Senate and the Faculty Organization, and then voted on in a faculty referendum.  You will find a link to the bylaws on the new faculty organization Web page.

Ed Sapp, adjunct professor of English and Adjunct Faculty Liaison to the Instruction Office, has prepared an excellent report for Vera Zdravkovich, vice president for Instruction, that outlines issues and makes recommendations concerning adjunct faculty communication, orientation, disenfranchisement, professional development, and management.  This report has been unanimously endorsed by both the Adjunct Faculty Committee and The Faculty Senate.

Faculty and administration are studying a number of proposals that deal with both retirement incentives for senior full-time faculty, and faculty salary and benefit improvements.  One strategy being considered is to reinvest salary savings realized as senior faculty retire, in salary package enhancements for less-senior full-time and adjunct faculty.  Another proposed strategy is to allocate a larger portion of future salary increases to faculty at the lower end of the pay scale.  We have offered to work in partnership with the administration in order to cooperatively study and discuss these and other proposals.  Work on this partnership effort continues, and we hope to have more news soon.

Vera Zdravkovich has shared a variety of institutional student success and retention concerns with the department chairs.  In one step toward addressing both issues, the Academic Regulations and Standards Committee and the Faculty Senate are reconsidering a late registration proposal that was partially adopted by the institution in 1990.  After acquiring additional data from the Office of Planning and Institutional Research, the committee will prepare a formal proposal for consideration by the Senate.  We encourage all faculty to carefully discuss issues of student access, success, and retention in the context of maintaining appropriate academic standards.  Please share your ideas with your department chair, your representatives on the Learning Centered Planning Committee, your Senate Delegates, and your Faculty Organization Officers.

Professional Development Day 2002 is over, but the task of analyzing the information we collected and formulating appropriate action plans is just beginning.  The theme for Professional Development Day was the Learning-Centered College.  General employee response to the day was favorable, but many faculty are inclined to reserve judgment concerning the effectiveness of the program until they begin to see significant implementation of programs that truly enhance the learning-centeredness of the institution.  The Professional Development Day Planning Committee is currently reviewing written information collected on that day, and is preparing to share that information with the college community through Vera Zdravkovich and the Learning-Centered Planning Committee. Simultaneously, a subcommittee of the Professional Development Council is evaluating Professional Development Day 2002 and is preparing recommendations for Professional Development Day 2003.

Finally, having survived their first semester outside Bladen Hall, the Village People have prepared several suggestions that are intended to improve village life in future semesters.  We are in the process of scheduling a meeting to discuss feasibility of the following:

  • Providing minimal chemical toilet facilities in the vicinity of the Village.
  • Providing free drinking water in the Village.
  • Providing some small conference rooms in the Village.
  • Rearranging some office space in the Village.
  • Installing awnings over building entrances in the Village.
  • Providing a covered walkway between the Lanham-Largo walkway and the Village.
  • Addressing the problem of slippery ramps and locked doors.
  • Addressing the faculty role in maintaining Village security.
  • Closing the inner roadway entrance off of 202 South, next to the Village, and diverting that traffic to the next campus entrance at the Largo High School light.
  • Providing a direct walkway from the Village classroom building to Parking Lot A.

We hope to provide a status report on Village issues when faculty return in January.

Rather than attempting to squeeze another holiday party into the busy month of September, the Faculty Senate hosted a successful welcome back reception for all faculty on January 16, 2003.  I hope you enjoyed your well-earned Winter Break!


The Instructional Area Newsletter, Volume 18, No. 2

Spring 2003