May 18, 2015 Minutes

Call to Order

The May 18, 2015 (May) meeting of the University Senate was called to order at 4:00 p.m. in the Ropp Center, Room 105, by President Michael Swanbom.

Roll Call

Sandi Richardson

A quorum was met. Those absent without excuse or proxy are: Travis Atkison, Rhonda Boyd, Jesse Davis, Justin Kavalir, Rich Mancil, Julie Moulard, and Bill Stammerjohan.

Approval of Minutes

The minutes for April 2015 were presented for ratification; a motion to adopt minutes as presented was made by Steven Toaddy and seconded by Greg Schelonka. Motion passed by unanimous vote.


  • Voting was conducted to determine senate support for an inclusiveness/antidiscrimination policy statement. After all votes were collected, senate support was in favor of the following statement:
    • Option 1 (unmodified M-11a) “This policy forbids harassment, discrimination, or retaliation of any kind by or against any applicant, employee, student, or any other individual on the basis of race, color, gender, age, religion, national origin, citizenship, disability, sexual orientation, genetic information, retirement, or veteran status.”
  • Voting was conducted to determine Vice President for 2015-2016 academic year. Three candidates were presented for consideration: Julie Rutledge, Steven Toaddy, and Leland Weiss. The winner and new vice-president is Julie Rutledge.
  • A representative from the College of Education needs to be selected to serve on the University Grievance Committee. Names were solicited and two were received for consideration: Kim Kimbell-Lopez and Carrice Cummings. The executive committee will discuss these submissions after the candidates are given an opportunity to express a willingness to serve.
  • Voting for the Senate Chair Award and the Virgil Orr Junior Faculty Award was conducted. Winners of these awards will be announced at Fall 2015-2016 convocation. Nominees for each award are:
    • University Senate Chair Award
      • William Green (Applied and Natural Sciences)
      • Anthony Inman (Business)
      • Jerome Tobacyk (Education)
      • Leland Weiss (Engineering and Science)
      • Guy Carwile (Liberal Arts)
    • Virgil Orr Junior Faculty Award
      • Paul Jackson (Applied and Natural Sciences)
      • Debbie Inman (Business)
      • Mitzi Desselles (Education)
      • Brad Cicciarelli (Engineering and Science)
      • Ernest Rufleth (Liberal Arts)
  • Voting was conducted to determine the 2015-2016 Treasurer. Four candidates were presented for consideration: Jamie Hancock, Sylvia Shultz, Jessica Szymanski, and Leland Weiss. The winner and new treasurer is Jamie Hancock.
  • Voting was conducted to determine the 2015-2015 Parliamentarian. Eleven candidates were presented for consideration: Kathleen Heiden, Arun Jaganathan, Bill McCumber, Lisa Merritt, Shane Puckett, Ernie Rufleth, Jessica Szymanski, Boris Teske, Sanjay Tewari, Shawn Trivette, and Leland Weiss. The winner and new parliamentarian is Ernie Rufleth.
  • Summer teaching compensation and the overload cap @ 6% of annual salary or $4500 maximum
    • A firm policy on how summer salaries are paid has yet to be developed
    • An apparent reduction from 8% to slightly over 7% seems to be the standard calculation
    • Decrease was driven by budget cuts
    • Summer teaching is entirely optional, therefore some flexibility is deemed acceptable
    • Issue is tabled to be assigned committee research for later action.
  • As a matter of general interest, the Louisiana state budget was briefly mentioned. Some of the numbers being bandied as potential higher education cuts for the academic year 2015-2016 ranged from 17% to 58%.
  • Another interesting piece of information was regarding tuition increases. Relative to average income of the citizens of Louisiana, tuition is now approximately 19% of that income. When compared to institutions in other states, however, the tuition costs remain quite low.
  • Outgoing president, Michael Swanbom, introduced the 2015-2016 incoming president, Patrick O’Neal

Voluntary Remarks



The motion to adjourn was made by David Merchant and seconded by Sanjay Tewari. The meeting adjourned at 5:08 pm.

Sandi Richardson, Recording Secretary