California State University, Northridge

Council of Chairs Meeting of April 21, 2008 Minutes

Attended:  Nancy Burstein (Education), Craig Finney (HHD), Pete Grego (MCCAMC), Nagy (engineering), Mara Houdyshell (library), Jennifer Kalfsbeek (Tseng College), Tae Oh (College of S&M), Paul Skolnick (S&Bs)  George Uba (Humanities), Melanie Williams (Business/Economics), Guests: Sharon Klein, Terry Piper, Harry Hellenbrand

1.  Welcome:  Finney

2.  Writing and Reading Across the Disciplines:  Sharon Klein (10:00-10:30)
Sharon Klein discussed a task force to identify concerns regarding writing and reading (e.g., common reading and writing strategies across disciplines).  Sharon is asking for information about Gateway classes and capstone courses in disciplines.  She is planning to build a workforce with representatives from each College – a campus institution to discuss these issues.  Also the emphasis is on technology (e-portfolios) and ways of assessing progress students are making.  A handout was distributed of a survey.

3.  Approval of Minutes from December Meeting
The minutes were approved.

4.  Potential Student Fee Increase Discussion:  Terry Piper (10:30-11:00)
A handout was distributed on the campus Quality Fee Proposal.  Terry Piper explained that during the last two to three years Vice Presidents have had conversations to serve faculty, staff and students particularly in areas where we don’t have access to general funds.  They have been discussing an increase in student fees.  Recently there was a substantial fee increase dedicated specifically for the new student union Recreation Center.  CSUN is losing ground and has come forward with a proposal for a Quality Fee Increase directly to student needs as related to educational instruction. 

The purpose of a “Quality Fee Increase” is to pay for all course needs (e.g. IRA funding, technology upgrades for instruction, course related lab fees) that we are incapable of doing under the current student fee schedule.  We are not keeping pace with technology – we do not have equipment needed. Most fees have not been changed for at least a decade.  We also need student services and academic fees to be increased.  President Koester has inherited an insufficient budget for athletics that is running at a deficit.  The total fee in the fourth year when fully implemented would be $100.

Questions and discussion followed including the distribution of fees for courses, increasing services for students, etc.  There will be three more forums for students, faculty and staff.  There is a website collecting information through April 30th.  The Advisory Committee meets and makes a recommendation to the President who will announce a decision by finals week.

Harry Hellenbrand explained the $$$ would be moved to the Colleges and then to the Departments.


5. Time Base for Chairs Discussion:  Harry Hellenbrand (11:00-11:30)
The amount of teaching for Chairs is usually worked out with the Dean, Department and the Chair.  The flexibility should be done locally.    However, Harry (as indicated in several documents) supports the reduction in teaching load  by 3 units (as follows):  1) those chairs we currently are teaching 3 units would  not have a teaching load, 2) and those chairs that are currently teaching 6 units would teach 3 units. This arrangement would be based on the department’s meeting their FTE target.

 Time-base has to do with salary. Craig explained there was no uniformity across colleges.  Harry indicated that most time-bases for Chairs were raised by .2 and gave Chairs the option to accrue base salary or operating expenses.  He suggested that representatives from COC meet with Diane Stephens and develop some consensus to provide uniformity across departments about the stipend. 

The Committee discussed the stipend of $750.  Some faculty thought it was a percentage of salary.  Some faculty thought it might be helpful for salary, particularly if one is getting close to retirement.  It was recommended that we talk about the issue with the Chairs.  Do we want a stipend or add it to our salary?  We will email Craig. 


6.  Election of New Officers
George, Craig, Paul and Nancy will be rotating out

New members:
Phyllis Herman, College of Humanities
David Kretschmer, COE

Craig explained that $1,000 is given by Provost for refreshments and the website.

Melanie Williams was elected unanimously as Chair.
Jennifer Kalfsbeck was elected unanimously as Secretary.

7.  Recognition of Members Leaving and New College Representatives Needed
Committee members thanked out going COC members for serving.

8.  Other Business
What would Chairs like at the retreat – talk to Chairs in departments. 

Next COC Meeting: 
Monday, May 12, 2008



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Last updated: June 12th, 2008