Penn State University Home  

 

THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY

 

T H E   S E N A T E   R E C O R D

 

Volume 37-----SEPTEMBER 16, 2003-----Number 1

 

The Senate Record is the official publication of the University Faculty Senate of The Pennsylvania State University, as provided for in Article I, Section 9, of the Standing Rules of the Senate and contained in the Constitution, Bylaws, and Standing Rules of the University Faculty Senate, The Pennsylvania State University 2003-04.

 

The publication is issued by the Senate Office, 101 Kern Graduate Building, University Park, PA  16802 (Telephone 814-863-0221).  The Record is distributed to all Libraries across the Penn State system, and is posted on the Web at http://www.psu.edu/ufs under publications.  Copies are made available to faculty and other University personnel on request.

 

Except for items specified in the applicable Standing Rules, decisions on the responsibility for inclusion of matters in the publication are those of the Chair of the University Faculty Senate.

 

When existing communication channels seem inappropriate, Senators are encouraged to submit brief letters relevant to the Senate's function as a legislative, advisory and forensic body to the Chair for possible inclusion in The Senate Record. 

 

Reports that have appeared in the Agenda of the meeting are not included in The Record unless they have been changed substantially during the meeting or are considered to be of major importance.  Remarks and discussion are abbreviated in most instances.  A complete transcript and tape of the meeting is on file.  Individuals with questions may contact Dr. Susan C. Youtz, Executive Secretary, or University Faculty Senate.

 

                                   TABLE OF CONTENTS

   I.  Final Agenda for September 16, 2003                        

       A.  Summary of Agenda Actions                                 

       B.  Minutes and Summaries of Remarks                      

  II.  Enumeration of Documents  
 

A.    Attendance

 

  B. Tentative Agenda for October 28, 2003  

                                         


                                       FINAL AGENDA FOR SEPTEMBER 16, 2003

A.  MINUTES OF THE PRECEDING MEETING      

      Minutes of the April 22, 2003, Meeting in The Senate Record 36:7

      http://www.psu.edu/ufs/record/index.html

 

B.     COMMUNICATIONS TO THE SENATE                                                                      

 

Seating Chart for 2003-2004

 

Senate Curriculum Report (Blue Sheets) of September 2, 2003                                                           

      [www.psu.edu/ufs/bluex.html]                                                                                            

 

C.     REPORT OF SENATE COUNCIL - Meeting of September 2, 2003                                

 

D.     COMMENTS BY CHAIR CHRISTOPHER J. BISE                                                   

 

E.  COMMENTS BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY                                    

     

F.      FORENSIC BUSINESS                                                                                                   

 

G.     UNFINISHED BUSINESS                                                                                                

 

H.     LEGISLATIVE REPORTS                                                                                                

 

I.        ADVISORY/CONSULTATIVE REPORTS

           

Faculty Affairs     

  Student Rating of Teaching Effectiveness (SRTE) Procedures                    

    

J.       INFORMATIONAL REPORTS                                                                                  

Faculty Rights and Responsibilities

 

  Annual Report for 2001-2002 and 2002-2003          

 

Joint Committee on Insurance and Benefits


  Annual Report, June 30, 2003      

  Presentation by Graham B. Spanier, Penn State President  

K.  NEW LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS    

                   

L.      COMMENTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE GOOD OF THE UNIVERSITY

                                                                                                                                             
M.  ADJOURNMENT           


                                                                                               

    SUMMARY OF AGENDA ACTIONS

 

The Senate voted on one Advisory/Consultative Report and heard three informational reports.

 

Student Rating of Teaching Effectiveness (SRTE) Procedures.  This advisory and consultative report presents five recommendations related to the frequency of SRTE reviews; the inclusion of SRTE results in dossiers; summary of student comments; procedural oversight of the SRTEs; and selection of items for the discipline-specific (B) section. (Advisory/Consultative Report) (See Senate Record, Pages 6-15 and Agenda Appendix “B.”)

  

Faculty Rights and Responsibilities.  This report provides a summary of the information on cases heard by the committee in 2001-2002 and 2002-2003. (Informational Report)(See Senate Record, Page 15 and Agenda Appendix “C.”)

 

Joint Committee on Insurance and Benefits.  This annual report examines the following areas: health care rates; health plan issues and changes; counseling and therapy coverage; life insurance; and long-term care coverage. (Informational Report) (See Senate Record, Page 16 and Agenda Appendix “D.”)

 

  Special Presentation to the Senate.   The president of Penn State, Graham B. Spanier, spoke about the changing demographics of the Commonwealth, the implications that those changes will have on Penn State’s future, and the questions this raises for the University as a result. (Informational Report) (See Senate Record, Pages 16-23 and Agenda Appendix “E.”)


 

The University Faculty Senate met on Tuesday, September 16, 2003, at 1:30 p.m. in Room 112 Kern Graduate Building with Christopher J. Bise, Chair, presiding.  There were 230 Senators who signed the roster. 

 

            Chair Bise:  Welcome to another academic year of the University Faculty Senate. 

 

MINUTES OF THE PRECEDING MEETING

 

  We will begin our meeting today with Agenda Item A, minutes from the preceding meeting. This is

the April 22, 2003, Senate Record providing a full transcription of the proceedings that was sent to all University Libraries and is posted on the Faculty Senate web page.  Are there any corrections or additions to this document?  May I hear a motion to accept?

 

Senators:  So moved.

 

            Chair Bise:  Second?

 

            Senators:  Second.

 

            Chair Bise:  All in favor of accepting the minutes of April 22, 2003, please say aye.

 

            Senators:  Aye.

 

            Chair Bise:  Opposed? Nay?  The ayes have it.  The motion carries, and the minutes of the April 22, 2003, meeting have been approved.

 

COMMUNICATIONS TO THE SENATE

 

Agenda Item B, Communications to the Senate.  The Senate Curriculum Report, which consists of the blue sheets of September 2, 2003, has been provided.  This document is posted on the University Faculty Senate’s web page.

 

REPORT OF SENATE COUNCIL

 

Agenda Item C, Report of Senate Council.  The minutes of the September 2, 2003, meeting is enclosed in today’s agenda.

 

COMMENTS BY THE CHAIR

 

Agenda Item D, Announcements by the Chair.  I refer you once again to the minutes of Senate Council at the end of your agenda. Included in the minutes are topics that have been discussed by the Faculty Advisory Committee with the President at recent meetings, along with information on campus visits planned for this fall.  I encourage you to visit the Faculty Senate website frequently at www.psu.edu/ufs to view meeting dates, committee rosters, curricular information and other helpful information. 

   

            I would like to take a few minutes to share with you my vision for the upcoming academic year.  At the outset, I wish to express my deepest appreciation to you for your support in selecting me as the Senate Chair for the 2003-04 academic year. It is truly an honor, and I look forward to working with each and every one of you as we strive to enhance Penn State’s reputation as a quality institution.

           

            Whoever came up with the adage, “If you want a job done right, give it to a busy person,” must have had a Penn State Faculty Senator in mind.  I have been thinking about Senate service for many months now, and about why we do it. As I look around this room, I see a group of outstanding educators, many whom I have known since I was a graduate student … (Yes, I know, a scary thought) … who volunteer their time and energy to this organization. Individuals who put a great deal of time and energy into their own teaching, research, and service, and still find the time to serve in the Senate. I have come to the conclusion that we do it because of our love for Penn State, our love for our professional affiliations, and our desire to make this University even better than it was when we began our careers. My predecessor, John Moore, often used the term “Citizen of the University” to describe a member of the Faculty Senate; I think it is a fitting description. There comes a time, in the development stages of outstanding faculty members, when they become less focused on their own reputations, and more focused on enhancing the group’s reputation. I can think of few organizations on this campus that can provide as much opportunity to accomplish that objective than the University Faculty Senate. Further, one does not have to read many issues of the “Chronicle of Higher Education” to realize that our Senate is something special.

 

            At the same time, I have been thinking about why Penn State is such a great institution.  I originally came here to spend two years in pursuit of a Master’s degree, only to stay here for 29 years. We often cite many statistics that we feel separate Penn State from its peer institutions.  However, the one number that I find overwhelming is 85,000. That is the number of people who, last year, wanted to have their credentials evaluated for acceptance to Penn State; that number is probably more than any other institution in the United States! Always, when I travel and someone asks me what I do for a living, I get a favorable reaction when I say, “I teach at Penn State,” even from those individuals who never attended here! Reactions range from “Penn State has such a great reputation in academics and sports” to “I had a Penn Stater as a boss / colleague / employee. He / she was great and really loyal to the school!” In fact, while I was on vacation last month, I took a day to visit my former mine superintendent, who retired to Florida a few years back; he mentioned to me that every time he wears the Penn State golfing shirt that I had given him, people come up and start a conversation about Penn State. Even though he must always say that he never attended here, he confided in me that he is always proud to follow it up with mention of the fact that he has a friend teaching here.

 

            So why do 85,000 people want to apply here annually? Why do tens of thousands of alumni have such a loyalty to this university, and why does the general public hold Penn State in such high regard? I would like to think that it is because of Penn State’s reputation for QUALITY. The Faculty Senate plays such a vital role when it comes to projecting the university’s QUALITY image. In an era when higher education is under such close scrutiny by the general public, Penn State’s image as a QUALITY institution is something we should guard jealously. 

 

            I would like us to keep this in mind as we deliberate on issues or write legislation: How does this activity or action enhance Penn State’s reputation as a QUALITY institution?

 

            Now, with regard to what the Faculty Senate will face this coming year, I am often asked, “What is your agenda?”  To the consternation of some, I have said that, “I have no agenda!” I would rather look at the upcoming year in terms of four goals. I’ve already mentioned one goal: to make sure that what we do is in keeping with the goal of enhancing Penn State’s reputation as a QUALITY university. That focus embraces all other parameters, such as being student centered and cost effective.

 

            A second goal of mine is to expand communication efforts. As you are well aware, I intend to continue the practice that was started by John Moore last year of sending an electronic Senate Newsletter to the faculty prior to our Senate meetings so that everyone has an idea of the issues we are addressing. I would also like to see members of Senate Council request time to speak at their individual college meetings about Senate issues. The Senate Office, in collaboration with the Provost’s Office and Information Technology Services, is developing an on-line curriculum proposal review and approval process; there is no doubt in my mind that the successful implementation of this process will enhance curricular communications and will provide a mechanism to the problem many of us have seen with regard to “Curricular Drift.” 

 

            We are also hearing from our campus visits that there is a growing concern about the lack of “Disciplinary Unity,” resulting from the reorganization of the campuses. This is an issue that we should be addressing in our committees and caucuses.

 

            Since good communication requires good listening, I hope that we can recognize that trait as we deliberate this year. In fact, I desire to become a good sounding board for your ideas. Whether or not I agree with your positions, I promise you that I will try my best to work with you in pursuit of successful outcomes. As I mentioned, I have known many of you from as far back as my graduate-student days. One incident where I received good advice that benefited me was when I received advice from a current Senator. This incident occurred when, as a Ph.D. candidate, I took a course on “Advanced Technical Writing,” which was taught by Carrie Eckhardt. I am very proud of the fact that by listening and following her good advice, I transformed a term paper, which I wrote for her class, into my first refereed publication. On the other hand, at approximately the same time, Bart Browning tried to convince me that squash was a much more challenging game than racquetball, and that I should switch to playing it. Looking back, Bart may have provided accurate and compelling information, but I decided not to follow his advice. To me, at that time, playing squash was like hitting a wad of wet tissue paper with a flyswatter! Oh well, I tend to think that my ability to listen and act on good advice has increased as a result of my years in the Senate.

  A third goal of mine is to ensure that the issues we address this year will be handled in a timely manner.
Last Spring, to more effectively utilize Senate time, the Senate passed legislation that no longer requires elaborate and detailed presentations for informational and mandated reports. In these instances, Senate floor time will be spent addressing questions raised by the reports and maintaining lively discussion and debate. Because we will strive to establish reasonable lengths for the full Senate meetings, my target is an hour-and-a-half to two hours or less. I hope that Senators who prematurely leave the meetings will do so only when necessary. Recognize that your attendance at the full Senate meetings is a measure of how well you represent your constituents.

  I have often been asked to predict what will be the most pressing issues addressed this year. When it
comes to prediction, I have to confess that I agree with that noted philosopher, Lawrence Peter Berra, who stated that “Prediction is difficult. Especially about the future!” It has been my experience that there are two types of issues that the Senate addresses: unplanned and planned. Sometimes, unplanned issues arise as a result of unplanned incidents.  Oftentimes, unplanned incidents tend to increase interest and accelerate the need for delivery of ongoing work.

            As an example of the latter, an incident took place in July which accelerated the need for ongoing work: background check for faculty hires.  As a result, the Faculty Affairs Committee is already reviewing a proposal on this matter, and will provide input on the relevant categories to be checked.

 

            It is easier to describe planned initiatives. This year, the Senate will be addressing issues concerning a wide range of topics. First and foremost, we will be deciding on the direction the Senate will take as a result of the Self Study; that looks like it will be brought to the Senate floor this semester. Other issues include…

  • Annual and Extended-Term Faculty Review
  • Intercultural and International Competence Requirement
  • "Sensative" Research
  • Retirement Benefits
  • Course Prerequisite Checking
  • Computer Security
  • Campus Safety

            Next is General Education.  It seems to me that everyone has an opinion on the topic. I am reminded of a story I once heard about two professors at the Sorbonne who were arrested during the height of the French Revolution for crimes against society. As they were being led to the guillotine, their executioner asked them if they would like to make a statement before being beheaded. At that opportunity, one of the professors said that he would like to take some time to comment on the Sorbonne’s recently implemented General Education Program. Upon hearing that, the other professor quickly jumped to his feet and pleaded, “Kill me, now!” I guess the more things change, the more things remain the same!

 

            Seriously, we already have committees assessing the implementation of several of the Gen Ed recommendations from five years ago, such as the First-Year Seminar, and we are initiating a review of the Health and Physical Activity component. Bart Browning has graciously accepted the position of Chair of the Committee; Bart, I assure you that I will take your suggestions more seriously than I did twenty-five years ago!

 

            Finally, my fourth goal is for us to judge the results that we achieve this year as being both significant and satisfying.  While we are at it, let us enjoy our efforts in the process!  Again, I am looking forward to working with each and every one of you this year. 

 

            Thank you.

 

COMMENTS BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY

 

Agenda Item E is Comments by the President of the University.  President Spanier is with us today.  I am pleased to invite him to come forward to make some remarks.

 

President Spanier:  Thank you Chris.  I appreciate those enlightening comments of yours.  I had no idea Carrie and Bart were so old.  (laughter)  I am going to be very brief in my remarks here right now because I am going to have a chance to take up more of your time later in the discussion today.  I do want to pick up where Chris left off and say a few words about governance at this university.  Like Chris, everywhere I go I hear great things about Penn State, but among the things I hear most often is the great regard that people have for the governance at this university—certainly the model that we have with our Board of Trustees, but also the model of faculty governance.  It works as well here as it does anywhere in the country, and frankly, I cannot imagine any other institution having a better model of faculty governance than we have at Penn State.  Even through the summer, Rod Erickson and I have the opportunity to meet monthly with the Faculty Advisory Council. Chris and his colleagues, some who are at the table and others, are among those who participate, and that is very beneficial for us.  We are able to have a very candid exchange of unfolding issues and topics at the university. These folks work very hard on your behalf and spend many hours doing this, and we do appreciate it very much. I wish the Faculty Senate a very good year and I think this year has been off to a great start.  We are precisely two weeks into the academic calendar. The move-in went very well on all of our campuses despite the changed schedule and other conflicts that arose along with that. We have what we think is a record enrollment this year. The official numbers will not become available for a few weeks, but we anticipate that they will be approaching 84,000 students when all is said and done. As expected, we have some modest shifts in enrollment within that overall category because of what is happening nationally in this country. We may expect in the final numbers to see a decline in the numbers of international students.  At the same time, we have what we think will be a very significant enrollment increase among graduate students at Penn State. Unlike undergraduate students, who are more of a top-down business where we kind of admit them at the top, so to speak, and exercise some control over them, graduate enrollments are from the bottom up. Where we end up with graduate enrollments is pretty much the sum of the number of students that each of you enrolls in your department. We learn some of that a little later than you may learn it, and clearly, overall, there have been some significant increases in graduate enrollments. I am sure, in part, this is due to the economy and availability of jobs.  There are some very talented people out there. We are more than a few weeks into this fiscal year, into this budget year, and we do not yet have an appropriation from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.  I hope none of you are noticing that. We do notice it in Old Main, but we have constructed our budget in a way that you should be able to go about doing your jobs without noticing that very much. We do expect that we will get an appropriation and that it will be smaller than the appropriation we received this past year, which, as you know, was also smaller than the appropriation the year before. Penn State is doing very well. Nevertheless, there is an irony in all of this in that Friday I need to present to our Board of Trustees our preliminary budget proposal for the 2004-2005 academic year and ask for their approval to move forward and meet the request that has already been presented to us by the commonwealth for us to send our budget forward.  It is an interesting exercise accomplishing that when you do not have your appropriation for this year yet and might not receive it for a while.  Apart from some nuances like that, I think we are off to an excellent start at the university this year.  In my comments later in the program, I plan to talk about some of the more long-term challenges that are ahead of us, and I look forward to making that presentation along with having a pretty open discussion with you about some of the issues I raise after my presentation.  For now, do you have any questions about other topics at the university or any of the other things I have just mentioned in the last couple of minutes?  

 

Chair Bise:  Are there any questions for President Spanier?  I remind you to stand and wait for the microphone before you give your name and unit.  (No questions.)  Thank you very much President Spanier.

 

            As we begin our discussion of reports, I would remind you to please stand and identify yourself and the unit you represent before addressing the Senate. 

 

FORENSIC BUSINESS

 

None.

 

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

 

None.

 

LEGISLATIVE REPORTS

 

None.

 

ADVISORY/CONSULTATIVE REPORTS

 

            Agenda Item I, Advisory/Consultative Reports, we have one Advisory/Consultative Report from the Senate Committee on Faculty Affairs.  It appears on today’s agenda as Appendix B and is entitled Student Rating of Teaching Effectiveness (SRTE) Procedures. Sallie McCorkle, Chair of Faculty Affairs, will introduce this report. Leonard Berkowitz, last year’s Chair of the subcommittee on Promotion, Tenure, and Appointments and Leaves, will join Sallie at the podium to make additional comments and to respond to questions.  Also, Bob Secor, Vice Provost of Academic Affairs, will be available for questions.  Sallie.

 

            Sallie McCorkle:  Thanks Chris. For about a year and a half, Faculty Affairs has been looking at the issue of SRTEs, and this report, which you are viewing, is a product of last year’s committee.  Because of that, I have asked Len Berkowitz to stand for questions and give you additional information, as he was the one in charge of the initial draft of the report.

 

            Leonard Berkowitz:  Thank you Sallie. Two years ago, the Senate Committee on Faculty Affairs asked Bob Secor to conduct a survey of SRTE use. He did so in the summer of 2002.  Last year’s committee on Faculty Affairs got those results and considered what needed to be done to make things better as a result of that survey and those results. Most of the changes we are recommending are minor. Some simply bring policy into line with practice, and a couple are based on the reorganization of the university. If you will turn to the second page, you will see where the recommendations begin. There is one minor change. There is a sentence that was mistakenly omitted when being transferred from the original to the proposal. You will notice that the current version of that section has a sentence three lines down in A that says, “Surveys shall also be conducted when requested by the faculty member.” That sentence was inadvertently omitted from the final version. This sentence needs to be included, so if you will take a look at recommendation A, which is the third line down after the word college, the previously omitted sentence should be inserted at that point. With that, Mr. Chairman, the Senate Committee on Faculty Affairs moves these recommendations and I will answer any questions at this time. 

 

            Chair Bise:  O.K., are there any questions?

 

            Brian Tormey, Altoona:  In section three, under recommendation one, I am a little bit troubled by this recommendation because, while it may match current practice, I am not really sure that it clarifies the intent. It seems to me that while we, on one hand, leave an opportunity for each of the colleges to indicate their own preferential guidelines in terms of implementation, we are, on the other hand, in the same part of the recommendation I am referring to, part three, recommending that all sections of all courses be evaluated.  This leaves it kind of a bit of a muddle to me, I think.  I like the language in the original document that said rather specifically that units should refrain from having every course evaluated every time it is taught. If the committee would accept this as an amendment or as kind of a parenthetical statement, then perhaps in that section three, I would like to suggest that as a friendly amendment. 

 

            Leonard Berkowitz:  I am sorry; the amendment cannot be accepted because it is not consistent with what the committee came forward with. Let me give a little background and then, if you wish to put that forward as an amendment, that can be done formally.  Here is the reason for the change. When the SRTE legislation was first proposed, we were told by experts in the field that students took this kind of survey less seriously if every course was done every time. It has now been some 18 years since that was done. In reviewing more recent expert advice, that no longer seems to be in consensus of the experts. That, in line with the fact that many units, in fact something like 80 percent of the units at Penn State, now think it is important to evaluate every course every time.  We thought it was not a good idea to have policy and practice in conflict with each other. In trying to compromise between what you are saying, practice and what we thought was reasonable and letting some people have some say in their own lives, we came up with this new version, which says first for provisional faculty--those faculty on tenure track who have not yet received tenure--we think it is important to have every course evaluated every time to get as much information as we can.  Approximately 80% of units are doing that anyway. Then we wanted to get away from a problem that occurred because of the reorganization. When we proposed this and it was implemented in the late 1980s, all faculties were members of university-wide departments, and so it made sense to say that those departments determined how often the SRTE was used for their faculty. Given the reorganization, we now have faculty on campuses that are part of the old departments, part of the new units, and then, of course, all of the new faculties are part of the new units. As a result, we have a situation where, at my campus, we have something like 68-70 faculty. We have 55 different schedules that must be followed, so we said, “let’s take a count of the organization and say let the colleges decide, aside from the original faculty, how frequently this should be used.” That is our substitute for what was there before. It no longer makes sense to say units should refrain from having every course evaluated every time it is taught since the evidence no longer supports that claim.  We are not mandating that it be done every time.  The recommendation comes from some of the experts who say it is good to have it done every time, but we are not going to mandate it.  So that is where we stood. 

 

            Robert Secor:  I just want to add a couple of reasons, first verifying that what Len said is in line with our policy.  Our practice shows that, more and more, we are evaluating every course, every time, and there are colleges that require it, so that 80% of us do it anyway.  There are two other reasons, maybe three, in addition to the ones that Len suggested. One is that to take something seriously you have to be willing to evaluate it. Over the years, we have been told that we do not take teaching as seriously as we take research. The way to take teaching seriously is to have some data that we can respond to and that is particularly shown, not only in the P&T process, but in annual evaluations and the salary increments, salary raises. And if you are not saying that the department head has information that if only one course is being evaluated during the year instead of four, or two instead of five, it just makes it difficult for the person who wants to take teaching into consideration in making an evaluation and a salary increase to have all of the information they need because you want to know how they did across the board. The second reason, and maybe the most important, is our students.  Over the years, the culture has changed to the point where every student feels they have the right to say what they want about how the course went or the recommendation they have to make to the teacher, and what they want people who are evaluating the teacher to know about the way they taught that course. If only two out of the five sections are being evaluated, then knowing that someone else who took the course at a different time has already made that evaluation does not satisfy those other three sections. I think the culture has changed to a point where we are saying units should have their own description as to what they want.  We are not mandating it, as Len said, but for all these reasons, we think it is really a good idea to evaluate every section of every course every time it is taught. 

 

            Brian Tormey:  I still think my comments are valid. I am referring to part three only. What I am suggesting is that this new policy on one hand, as Bob has indicated, suggests that we ought to have every section of every course evaluated every time, but we are not really ready to say that.  My feeling is that we need to clarify our intentions and either if that is what we are ready to say, or in fact, rather than leave it up to local administrative implementation interpretations, we have the policy specify what we really mean and intend. So, I do make this as a formal amendment indicating that in section number three, following the end of the next to the last sentence, as part of that sentence, the last phrase “it is recommended that all sections of all courses shall be evaluated” that we include the parenthetical addition “units shall refrain from having every course evaluated every time,” and we could add “in every section every time it is taught.”  Thank you.

 

            Chair Bise:  We have a formal amendment to this document; do I hear a second?

 

            Senator:  Second.

 

            Chair Bise:  I hear a second.  Further discussion?

 

            Leonard Berkowitz:  May I make one small comment?  I’m not going to comment on the content, since I have already done so. I would, however, like to point out that if we do that, we have contradicted ourselves in those two sentences. The sentence before it says we recommend you do it and the new sentence says we recommend you do not do it.  So, I think we should have one or the other, but I do not think we ought to have both.  I recommend, obviously, that you vote against the amendment. 

 

            Chair Bise:  Any other comment?  We have a motion for amendment; it has been moved and seconded.  All in favor of the amendment to the document signify by saying aye. 

Senators: Aye

 

Chair Bise: Opposed? 

 

            Senators:  Nay.

 

            Chair Bise:  The nays carry.  The amendment is defeated.  Any other questions?

 

            Rajen Mookerjee, Beaver Campus: During your discussions, I wondered whether you talked about making retrospective evaluations an integral part of this process.  It means one thing to evaluate during the semester, but it is another thing to pick students out of your list randomly over the year and send them questionnaires.  At our campus we have done that very successfully when we put people up for tenure and promotion.  I wondered if you have talked about that at all and what your feelings are on that.

 

            Leonard Berkowitz:  I will address that in two ways. The first answer is simple and short, and the answer is no because, in this case, what we were concentrating on are SRTE procedures. The second point is a little longer, and perhaps Bob would like to address it, and that is that the Promotion and Tenure procedures do call for additional student information and leave it up to units how to do that, and many do exactly what you say.  That is why it is not part of this legislation. 

 

            Chair Bise:  Any other questions?

 

            Roger Egolf, Berks-Lehigh Valley: One thing it does not specifically state, and it is something that I think should be included, is exactly what the meaning is supposed to be here. For people who have a tenure home in one college and a location at another college, we need to specify which set of guidelines is being followed?  This says that for all other faculty at each college must develop clear and specific guidelines.  It does not specify whether it is their tenure home college or their location college.

 

            Leonard Berkowitz:  It is their location home. We were trying to clear up that problem, and thank you for pointing that out. 

 

            Roger Egolf:  It should be included somehow with the wording of the statement. 

 

Leonard Berkowitz:  All right, and remember we are not writing wording here, we are making a recommendation to the vice provost who writes the guidelines and he can verify that was our intent and make sure that is clear when he re-writes the guidelines.  Thank you.

 

Chair Bise:  Anybody else? 

 

Dennis Shea, Health and Human Development:  I want to draw attention to your recommendations five and six on the Section B items.  Having gone through a review of these not too long ago, one thing that impressed me was how few of those Section B items really apply to active and collaborative learning. Your recommendation suggests that units choose those items and review them.  It does not suggest that new B Items be generated or the units follow a certain cycle in order to review those items and update them on a regular basis. I wondered if that was something you discussed, and if it was rejected, or whether it was something that really should be part of these recommendations. 

 

Leonard Berkowitz:  You have hit upon something that was, in fact, part of the reason for that section. I thought we would make that explicit because there are new ways that things are taught. If you look at the explanation just above recommendation five, we cite that specifically. The question then comes up of whether there are enough items within the whole pool that cover this new way of teaching? I have not reviewed that at this point. Bob, could you please address the possibility of adding to the B Section, that is to the pool, if there are items that are not there and how a unit would go about adding to the pool and saying, “Here are some things we would like to put into that section, but they are not even in the pool.”

 

            Robert Secor:  Just let us know if you want them in the pool and we will get them in the pool.

 

Leonard Berkowitz:  That was my supposition, but I wanted to make sure it was on the record. That was what we tried to do in the beginning, fifteen years ago.

 

            Chair Bise:  Any other questions?

 

            Peter Rebane, Abington:  I wanted to go back for just a second to the question that Brian raised. I understand that the way this is written is an attempt to seek a conciliatory mediation between requiring all courses to be reviewed, yet giving some independence to the local unit. In that case, I just wanted you to comment for the Record on the last sentence on page three in that proposal, quote, “College guidelines would be reviewed by the office of the Provost to be sure they are consistent with these principles.”

I just wanted to make absolutely certain that if a particular college does not choose to interpret the guidelines to mean that every course, every section, every semester, has to be evaluated, that the Provost office understands that. I want to make it absolutely certain, maybe Bob could speak to that issue, that if a unit decides to go with less frequent evaluations for reasons that may be very good, they should not feel hindered in doing so by that particular last sentence. I do not know if one should propose removing or amending that, but at least getting on the record that it is not meant to be an intimidating statement.  Thank you.

 

            Leonard Berkowitz:  Let us do this two ways. One, let me clarify what these principles are, and second, let us ask Bob to put it on the Record that he is not going to disapprove those that do not live up to that recommendation. The principles we are talking about are 11. a. (1) at the bottom of page two, “Where possible, evaluations should be conducted over a period of years and in a variety of courses,” and the last point “Faculty being reviewed for promotion, even when it is not coupled with a tenure review, should be able to demonstrate their teaching achievements in part through student evaluations that have been done over time and in a variety of courses.”  Those are the principles we are talking about.  Bob would you please tell us for the record that units are not going to have to do every course, every semester? 

 

            Robert Secor:  (Inaudible)

 

James Alcock, Abington:  In speaking about evaluation, you have used SRTE and evaluation sort of synonymously.

 

Leonard Berkowitz:  No, not synonymously.  SRTEs are one piece of teaching evaluations. That is all they are.

 

James Alcock:  But is it possible to have alternative forms of evaluation of teaching rather than simple SRTEs which some of us dislike?

 

            Leonard Berkowitz:  There are additional forms.  Bob, would you like to address whether there could be substitutes for them?

           

            Robert Secor:  There was Senate legislation when we last looked at it and we said that we would put on file, in Renata’s office, a couple of other student evaluation forms. These are national forms that have been used for people who think this particular form is a problem. I do not think they have been used very much, if at all.  They are there for people who feel that the problem is not with their teacher, but with the form. 

 

            Leonard Berkowitz:  But that is not going to be up to the individual faculty; it will be up to units, is that correct?  You better look at that legislation.

 

Robert Secor:  I will look at it, but I do believe that faculty can choose. What is mandated is that the SRTE or an equivalent form be used, and faculty can choose that other form.

 

Chair Bise:  Any other questions?

 

Bonj Szczygiel, Arts & Architecture:  I think this is more of a clarification than anything else, but I am assuming that the SRTE officially refers to the scan sheet, the quantitative analysis. At the bottom of page three, number three, there is just a brief comment about student comments. I am wondering if there is further discussion about the role of student comments elsewhere since it is not being addressed here.

 

Leonard Berkowitz:  Almost all units in addition to or in conjunction with handing out the scan sheet SRTE use some format which allows students to make written comments about faculty members. Sometimes it is as simple as a three-question format similar to something that used to be used.  It is similar to something that used to be used and sometimes is another form. What we found was when this was being used, those comments were being summarized, and Bob can speak to this in more detail as to specifically how this is done for Promotion and Tenure purposes. What we were worried about is in the survey that we got back, some units say, “We let the faculty member summarize what the student said about him or her.” and that made no sense.  So, we are simply trying to regularize that. 

                                           

            Robert Secor:  As a matter of fact Len, before you got on the committee the summer before we did the survey, that was a trigger point for me being asked to do the survey because some people on the Faculty Affairs Committee were concerned about how those student comments were being presented. There was some concern that it was a staff person, secretarial person, who was choosing comments and putting them in the file. One of the things our committee felt pretty strongly about was that this should be a faculty person who was going to be involved in what it is that is truly representative and captures the flavor of the teacher.  

 

            Bonj Szczygiel:  I understand that paragraph, and I understand what you are getting at with it.  My question is, is there any suggested use for those qualitative sheets? For example, I can think of one instance in my department where the faculty probably would have preferred not to have student-written comments at the time that they were being made part of this permanent file. We have all had situations where you can almost predict that the students might not have had a good experience. Not that their comments would not be valuable at that point in time. If our department head insists, what are the faculty’s rights? 

 

            Robert Secor:  We are looking at the SRTEs and the conflicts of Tenure and Promotion.  Our guidelines say that there must be one other form besides simply the machine graded SRTEs and one recommendation is that students have a chance to comment and that those comments be summarized and we are addressing how they be summarized.  Your own college or campus guidelines would indicate what it is you are doing to evaluate student reaction. And if one of those is to get written comments in each class, then that is something that you are bound to do and a faculty member cannot say, “I do not want anybody commenting on my class; all I want are the machine grades.”  That would not be an issue.

 

            Travis DeCastro, Arts and Architecture:  I keep hearing that you can change the list of questions, but not having seen the pool, I have no idea what I would change it with. It might be useful if you could share the pool with the Senate so we might take a look at it. Also, the other methods of evaluation in the arts—it is different teaching art than teaching something else. 

 

            Leonard Berkowitz:  We can do that at some point in the future. We will look for a way to communicate to everyone how to get hold of the list of questions in the pool and who will actually bring that to the Senate if you like. But it is purely informational, of course.

 

            Peter Deines, Earth and Mineral Sciences:  This is a question to Bob. Since you said that the process of looking at this more closely arose after the fact that the staff was involved in the selection of student comments, here it says presently that administrative or college delegate, in your mind, staff is excluded here, right? Administrative would mean faculty.

 

            Robert Secor:  Or it could be the department head; it could be the associate department head; or faculty, chair of Faculty Committee.

 

            Peter Deines: So this means no staff. Thanks.

 

            Jim May, DuBois Campus Commonwealth College: My colleagues at my campus, and often when I am gathered in groups, complain about the ordering of the questions, which this does not address. So, you are initially hit with overall, and then you move into specific inquiries where the student is sort of thinking it through. And some people feel that often the overall responses are lower than the student’s estimation of later questions, and that they would generally do better if the students sought through more specific questions before deciding the overall. Was there some discussion in this group about changing the order of the questioning?

 

            Leonard Berkowitz: Yes, in fact, our concern is not so much whether it would be higher or lower, but whether you would you get a more valid response if students were thinking in specific terms rather than giving their gut reactions. The initial version of our report had that reversal of the A and B sections, which is what you are talking about as a specific recommendation. What we get concerned about is whether it would have an impact on what would happen. So, we have asked Renata Engel to conduct a test to see whether it would have any impact before we actually say, “Go do it.” That is being done and Renata can address it if you like. In fact, you will see that specific idea in the conclusion of the report. Thank you very much.

 

            Chair Bise: A question over here.

 

            Roselyn Costantino, Altoona: I am a new senator, so I was not in on the original discussions with this, but one of the things that I have heard many times from the people at our campus has to do with the statistics of the SRTE. For those who teach small classes and classes that are required, as opposed to other kinds of classes, naturally, there is some kind of fallout in your SRTEs. But, at other institutions, often what they will do is to throw out the highest and lowest, which really affects students in a small class. If you have a class of fifteen students and one student says this is my chance for revenge, and gives you ones and all the others are in the five to seven ranges, it is disproportionate. It does not make itself up as it might in a class of 30 or 60 or 300. I was wondering if that aspect of it had been addressed at all.

 

            Leonard Berkowitz: Not directly. We do have rules about what percentage of people must respond and those kinds of things to try to take care of the statistical problem. We have not addressed a question about very small classes that I know of. We certainly can do that.

 

                    Louis Milakofsky, Berks-Lehigh Valley: Under the section for all other faculty, and I am referring to the student comments line, does that mean that if this legislation passes, then the college recommends all SRTEs? Normally, in practicality, the student comments are gathered at the same time as the SRTEs. So, are they required also every time, every course, every section?

 

            Leonard Berkowitz: That would be up to your college to decide. And even if they were, that would not necessarily mean that it would be required for some administrator to summarize them each time.

 

            Louis Milakofsky, Berks-Lehigh Valley: So, it only applies to those under the tenure track or promotion.

 

            Leonard Berkowitz: That is correct.

 

            Paul Becker, Erie: I do not mean to sound sarcastic, but could you clarify to whom this advice is being given and whether or not that person has the authority to change the SRTEs. That is not clear in the report.

 

            Leonard Berkowitz: This advice, like all advice in the Constitution of the Senate, formally goes to the office of the president, and the president then assigns it to the appropriate administrator. In practical terms, it goes to Bob Secor, who served on the sub-committee and is right here, and so here is everything we are assigned.

 

            Jeff Corbets, Student Senator, College of Engineering: I am concerned that this report suggests that SRTEs are for tenure and promotion only. I was wondering if there was a consideration by the committee that SRTEs be distributed in every course, every section, and each semester to be reviewed and not necessarily included in the faculty dossier, thereby allowing the faculty to improve their course so that when it is going to be included they have improved, and have higher SRTE scores.

 

            Leonard Berkowitz: Thank you. Yes, that is precisely what we were talking about in the very beginning. On the top of page 3, number 2 refers to tenure track faculties who have not yet gotten tenure. But, number 3 refers to all other faculty. Here we are saying it ought to be used there as well, but the college should decide how frequently, with the idea still being that you ought to get fairly frequent reviews and we even like the idea that it be done every course, every time, but we are not going to mandate it. So yes, this covers exactly what you are talking about, and it covers it for two purposes. One is the improvement purpose you are talking about. This particular format was designed for personnel evaluation purposes and it is used every year in conjunction with HR 40, which is an annual evaluation of faculty.

 

            Howard Sachs, Harrisburg: I think this has been an enormously helpful discussion, Len and Bob, and I would ask particularly Bob to figure out a way to disseminate some of the results of this discussion out to the faculty as a whole. I have heard things here today—I did not know that there was a pool of questions; I do not know about the procedures in my college. I could not personally give you the procedures for my college, so I just think it would be very helpful to the faculty as a whole if you did a briefing sheet about the SRTEs. Then you could just put it on the website or something, but disseminate it.

 

            Bob Secor: I would be happy to do that and I am going to work with Renata because she oversees the developmental part of SRTEs as well, and we will get something out to the faculty.

 

Chair Bise: I will be happy to include this information in the Senate Newsletter.

 

           Chair Bise: Anybody else?

 

            Chair Bise: O.K. Since the proposal comes to us from a committee, it has already been moved and seconded. Are we ready to vote?… As many as are in favor of the proposal from the Senate Committee on Faculty Affairs entitled Student Rating of Teaching Effectiveness, SRTE Procedures, Please say aye.

 

            Senators: Aye.

 

            Chair Bise: Opposed, say nay.

 

            Senators: Nay.

 

            Chair Bise: The ayes have it. The motion passes. The Senate has approved the proposal from the Senate Committee on Faculty Affairs entitled “Student Rating of Teaching Effectiveness, SRTE Procedures.” The report will now be sent to the president for his approval and subsequent implementation.

 

INFORMATIONAL REPORTS

 

FACULTY RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES

           

            Annual Report for 2001-2002 and 2002-2003. This report was presented by Committee Chair, Renata Engel.

 

 

JOINT COMMITTEE ON INSURANCE AND BENEFITS

 

Annual Report, June 30, 2003.  This report was presented by Committee Chair, George Franz.

 

SENATE COUNCIL

 

            Presentation by Graham B. Spanier, Penn State President

 

Thank you for this opportunity to launch a dialog about issues important to the future of Penn State. I hope, from time to time, through such presentations, to outline challenges meriting the serious attention of the faculty, staff, administration, and trustees of Penn State.       

The first topic I wish to tackle, the focus of my presentation today, concerns the changing demography of Pennsylvania and its consequences for higher education.  As a demographer myself, I have always felt that such analyses can be both enlightening and important in planning for the future of nearly every enterprise in America, and education is no exception.

 

SLIDE #1 – Pennsylvania: The Next 25 Years

I have selected several major trends to feature in this analysis of what will influence higher education in Pennsylvania in the next decade.  They are:

·        The slow population growth forecast for Pennsylvania;

·        The shrinking pool of high school graduates;

·        The Commonwealth’s aging population profile;

·        The modest population diversity in the Commonwealth;

·        The increasing proportion of women attending college and the concomitant decrease in men;

·        Changing family structures and their influence on our students and employees; and

·        The effects of the brain drain in Pennsylvania.

 

SLIDE #2 -- Worth of a Degree: Lifetime Earning Power

First, we might ask why is higher education so highly valued in our society today?  We cherish an educated citizenry and the associated contributions to human development, cultural advancement, and the quality of life.  But from a strictly economic viewpoint, lifetime earning power of an individual increases substantially with each academic degree earned -- roughly a million more with a baccalaureate degree and about $3 million more with a doctorate.

Education is often seen as the great fault line that determines who can be part of the American dream. The more you learn, the more you earn.  In 1950, 80 percent of jobs were classified as “unskilled.”  Now, an estimated 85 percent of jobs are classified as “skilled,” requiring education beyond high school.

 
SLIDE #3 -- Picture of Old Main

Penn State is among the leaders nationally in virtually every measure of progress in higher education, including the number and quality of applications for admission, the quality and productivity of the faculty, the modernization of the physical plant, philanthropy of alumni and other donors, developments in information technology, advances in the curriculum, and the scope of funded research.  It is appropriate to begin by asking how this prominence translates into our popularity with prospective students, a key indicator.

SLIDE #4 -- Applications for Admissions

Applications for admission at all levels have climbed dramatically during the past decade. And this past year, we recorded the highest number of applications in our history, with 86,000 students applying, making Penn State perhaps the most popular university in the nation.

SLIDE #5 -- Fall Semester Enrollment Total University

As applications from qualified students increased dramatically between 1992 and 1998, enrollments rose by about 10,000 students. However, our enrollment has risen only 2.9 percent since then -- by design, part of our plan to increase overall University enrollments only modestly.

SLIDE #6 -- Minority Enrollment Total University

We have also attracted more students of color to Penn State. Overall, University minority enrollment has grown by about 50 percent since 1994.

SLIDE # 7 -- Minority Enrollment at University Park

Just taking a quick look at University Park alone, minority enrollment accounts for nearly 12 percent of the student body. While 12 percent would seem modest to most of us, remember that only one in six Pennsylvanians is a member of a minority group. As I will show later, Pennsylvania is not nearly as diverse as the rest of the nation.

We have put significant resources into attracting and retaining minority students, and we remain committed to affirmative action and an environment supportive of all of our students.

 
SLIDE #8 -- Percent of H.S. Graduates Going to College

The percent of high school graduates who choose to go on to college has climbed over the last few decadess, both in the United States and Pennsylvania.

Since 1989, Pennsylvania’s college-going rate has surpassed the national rate, reaching a high last year of 73 percent.  The college-going rate is leveling off, but I anticipate that it will remain at this high level.  Pennsylvania higher education has seen increased enrollments of state residents primarily because of this trend.  Enrollment and budgetary disasters would have confronted many Pennsylvania colleges and universities had this trend not offset the dramatic decline in the number of high school graduates.  

SLIDE #9 -- View of Pennsylvania High School Graduates Pool

The number of Pennsylvania high school graduates dropped over the 20-year period from 1975 to 1995 by more than 44,000 students to a total of about 110,000 -- one of the most profound demographic trends this state has ever seen. Projections that combine the leveling off of the percentage who go to college with the continued lower number of high school graduates indicate that many Pennsylvania colleges and universities that depend on in-state students and that are a less desirable destination for those students could be struggling.


SLIDE #10 -- Pool of High School Graduates will shrink

In the 1970s, about 35 percent of Pennsylvania’s population was 18 years old or younger.  This decreased to 25 percent in 2000. By 2010, it will drop a tad more. Houston, we have a pipeline problem.

Pennsylvania colleges and universities will face a new round of enrollment challenges after 2008, when the modern day peak year for college-bound high school graduates will pass. I hasten to add, however, that this trend is of lesser concern to the viability of Penn State, where our popularity with out-of-state students is strong and growing and where the overall admissions activity I cited earlier provides us some security.  However, some of our campuses may be particularly vulnerable to the profound demographic shifts that affect their region.

SLIDE #11 -- Percent Change in H.S. Graduation by County, 2004-2013

There are some potentially serious implications for campuses in areas of the state that will be particularly hard hit by these demographic shifts.

In northeastern Pennsylvania, for example, the Wilkes-Barre campus’ service area expects to experience a decline of 18 percent in high school graduates. On the other hand, the Reading area (where Penn State Berks is located) projects a 22 percent increase in high school graduates between 2004 and 2013.

Overall, the Commonwealth College will be recruiting from a projected pool that will have 7 percent fewer high school graduates in the areas served most directly by its campuses.

 I have no interest whatsoever in closing any of our campuses in the face of this declining regional applicant pool, so we will need to work especially hard to ensure the viability and ongoing health of all of our campuses.

 

SLIDE # 12 --Slow Growth Characterizes Pennsylvania

Although Pennsylvania is ranked 6th in the nation in population, we rank next to last in growth. This slow growth will have important implications for the Commonwealth in terms of tax revenues and state funding.

This past decade was the only decade of the 20th century in which every state gained population. However, the entire northeast only saw a 6 percent increase. The West and the South were the fastest growing areas with a 20 percent and 17 percent growth rate respectively.

Between 1999 and 2025, Pennsylvania is expected to grow annually by little more than one-third of 1 percent, and that growth will not be occurring in our population of youth.

That means completion among universities for 18-year-olds will be more intense than ever, and the pressure to attract non-traditional students will increase dramatically. At all of Penn State's campuses, we will need to pay increased attention to adult learners.

SLIDE #13 -- Competition for Out-of-State Students Heats Up

Pennsylvania has 146 degree granting institutions. Only 16 of them attract the majority of their students from outside the state, and many of these are near the state borders. Although more than 80 percent of Penn State’s undergraduate students are Pennsylvanians, we nevertheless attract increasing numbers of out-of-state students as our national stature continues to grow. 

Given the stagnant demographics of Pennsylvania, competition for in-state students can only be expected to intensify. Schools will invest more in out-of-state recruitment as well.

At the same time, as the number of in-state high school graduates declines in the coming years, we will likely witness a shift in the mission of many of our fellow institutions. They will ignore, revise, and possibly jeopardize their historic missions in attempts to find new students and new sources of revenue. Some will venture into distance education or new professional programs. Many will try to be more like Penn State and will define us as a competitor, trying to be more things to more people.

Penn State will not stray from its historic mission nor will we jeopardize our fundamental values. We are responsive to important educational trends but wary of chasing quick fixes.

SLIDE #14 -- Penn State Reputation is Top in the State

            While some schools have occasionally complained about Penn State’s scope, presence, and brand name appeal, many of them are now actually venturing into educational programs that were once predominantly Penn State’s domain.  We are not troubled by such shifts.

The Penn State brand name and our early entry into markets have reinforced our position as a leader. Our surveys of Pennsylvania citizens show that year after year, we remain the most well-known and highly regarded university in the state.

What this does mean, though, is that the rhetoric surrounding higher education could very well become contentious. I hope this can be avoided.  It also could mean some institutional mergers. And sadly, it could mean that some schools will be forced to close their doors.

 

SLIDE #15--Proportion of Senior Citizens Growing

At the same time the proportion of Pennsylvania youth is declining, the proportion of senior citizens is on the rise, largely due to the aging of the Baby Boomers. In 2011, the first Baby Boomers will turn 65, and within 17 years, 70 million will follow suit in the U.S.

In 1970, 11 percent of Pennsylvania’s population was 65 years or older, ranking us 14th nationally. By 2025, that figure will almost double to 21 percent. Currently, Pennsylvania ranks second in the nation in the percent of its population who are elderly.

Across the country, senior citizens will become a dominant force. This gerontological drift could have a great effect on the public support - or more precisely the lack of it --we receive in the future. Will older individuals, who vote at much higher rates and have strong lobbies, support the education of the state's youth?

Higher education will likely continue to find itself on the short end of the stick when it comes to state funding priorities, especially when the competition is health care and other important needs of the elderly.

So, let us talk about the future elderly. The Baby Boomers.

 

SLIDE #16 –The Graying of Our Faculty

Many Baby Boomers have delayed life stages -- from marrying to having children -- and there is little reason to expect that they won’t do the same with retirement. A 33 percent increase is forecast in the number of people in the national workforce who will be between the ages of 65 and 74 years old. In fact, many faculty members are delaying retirement.

 

SLIDE # 17 – Faculty Age Distribution for Penn State

Looking at the actual age distribution of our faculty for 2002, we are pretty much in step with national forecasts of an aging professorate. Reasons for this aging trend include massive hiring in the 1960s, low faculty turnover, good health care, poor stock market performance, and, as I mentioned, a decline in the rate of retirement.

 
SLIDE #18 -- Nation's Growing Diversity Not Reflected in Pennsylvania

Let me turn now to the important topic of diversity.

National demographic projections suggest that about 65 percent of the growth in population through the year 2020 will be in ethnic minority groups, particularly Hispanics and Asian populations.  But as with age, this population change will not be uniformly distributed across the country. In fact, three-fifths of the projected 65 percent increase in minority populations will take place in just three states: Florida, California, and Texas. A portion of this population growth will be fueled by immigration.

Pennsylvania, however, will remain significantly white. In 2010, our population is expected to be 82 percent white, 10.5 percent African American, 4.5 percent Hispanic, 2.8 percent Asian, and only .2 percent Native American.

 

SLIDE #19 – U.S. and Pennsylvania White and Hispanic Population to 2025

            By the year 2025, the U.S. population is expected to be 19 percent Hispanic. By 2025, Pennsylvania’s Hispanic population, which is currently less than 5 percent of our population, is expected to only reach 7 percent.

Eighty percent of students attend college in the state from which they graduated high school, so it’s going to be pretty tough to try to provide our students with an educational experience that mirrors the nation’s diversity if we don’t have that diverse pool to draw from within our own state.

 

SLIDE #20 – Pennsylvania’s Hispanic Growth

            In the southeast region of the state, however, we will see very strong growth in Hispanics. The region surrounding our Berks and Lehigh Valley campuses, for example, will see their percentages of Hispanics more than double by 2025.

These changes certainly have major implications for K-12 education in this region. But they also have implications for Penn State -- not only for teaching and learning, but also for the way we recruit students. For example, siblings of Hispanic college students are more likely to attend the same institutions as their brothers or sisters. However, in general, they are less likely to move any great distance away from their families.

 

SLIDE # 21-- Penn State Minority Faculty Growth

Stepping up the recruitment of minority faculty will be an even bigger priority. We have increased our efforts at the recruitment and retention of faculty of color in recent years and we’ve seen some positive results.

 

SLIDE # 22 -- Penn State Female Faculty Growth

More and more women are attending college. Having sufficient role models is important.

Here at Penn State, our female faculty ranks have continued to grow, reaching nearly 1,700 last fall.  The hiring of female faculty members is growing even more important as our campuses also experience a gender shift among our student population. 

SLIDE #23 -- The Majority of College Students are Women

In fact, the majority of college students are women, who now make up more than 56 percent of the undergraduate population on U.S. campuses.

Nationally, for every 100 men who earn bachelor’s degrees, 133 women do the same.  By 2020, the gap is expected to widen to 156 women per 100 men earning degrees.  This raises a range of questions for educators and policy makers.

            In Pennsylvania, 55 percent of those enrolled in higher education institutions are female.  This imbalance has yet to hit Penn State, where males outnumber females by about 8 percentage points, due to our historically heavy male enrollment in disciplines such as engineering, earth and mineral sciences, and agriculture.  But this is changing.

 
SLIDE #24 -- Changing Family Structure

In the area of family structure, there are a number of demographic shifts that have an impact on our students, affecting everything from their access to college to the financial aid they need, to additional student services that must be provided.

These changes -- which include everything from increased divorce rates and the rise of single-parent households to lower fertility rates to remarriage and the growth of unmarried couple households -- have greatly impacted our student population.

As an example, from 1970 to 2000, the proportion of married-couple families with children under age 18 declined from 40 percent of all U.S. households to 24 percent and fertility rates have dropped substantially.  More relevant is that today’s students arrive at the University with a broader array of personal and familial challenges.  Their demands on our health care facilities and our counseling services, for example, have increased dramatically.

Among all women who had children in 2000, 31 percent were unmarried mothers--who have the highest poverty rate. Poverty is a huge deterrent to attending college, but ironically, education is the key to addressing poverty. So there is quite a disconnect here. 

As you know, living arrangements, economic and social environments, and types of neighborhoods contribute substantially to the development of our youth. All of the changes I am mentioning are having an effect on the students who will be arriving at our doorstep.

Most will require financial assistance and more will have jobs to help them pay for their college education. Working students come with their own set of challenges -- among them the challenge of persisting in college as well as taking longer to earn their degree.

 

SLIDE # 25 --Penn State Image

In addition, as a workplace, Penn State is offering more services to its employees who also are experiencing stress from life changes. We have instituted a number of family-friendly policies to deal with the increasing complexities brought on by these shifts in family structure.  We have created an Employee Special Assistance Fund, which provides financial support for faculty and staff facing a wide range of personal or family needs. We also have the Employee Assistance Program, a Family Medical Leave policy, a Vacation Donation Program, childcare access, and a series of work/life programs. 

 

SLIDE # 26  -- Median Age at First Marriage

A trend that is likely to impact donor giving is the rising age at first marriage. In 1970, the median age at first marriage was 21 for women and 23 for men. By 2000, the median age had risen to 25 for women and 27 for men. By marrying later in life, men and women are meeting their future marriage partners less often in college, and more often in the work place.

 
SLIDE #27 -- Grand Destiny Campaign

During the Grand Destiny Campaign, many of our largest gifts came from couples who met each other at Penn State.  In the future, this will less often be the case, and we will have to work much harder to convince a couple loyal to two different alma maters to bless Penn State with their philanthropy. 

Another consideration for our fundraisers is the fact that men tend to marry women who are, on average, three years younger. Now add in the fact that women are living 8 to 10 years longer than men, and you can see the changing landscape for university philanthropy.

 

SLIDE #28 – Pennsylvania’s Economy Feeling the Effects of Brain Drain

            Another serious challenge we face is the “brain drain”  -- the out-migration of young people -- that continues as a significant negative trend for the Commonwealth as well as for Penn State. The state is losing more young workers than we are gaining from other states. Simply put, too many of our graduates are not staying within Pennsylvania  -- due to the lack of jobs. The state needs to focus on attracting the right businesses to the Commonwealth and place a greater emphasis on educating its workforce. And we need to help find incentives to get our graduates to stay.

 

SLIDE #29 – Number of Undergrads Receiving Financial Aid

Financial aid is a critical component in getting students into college and creating the workforce needed for economic growth. At Penn State, the average debt carried by our students is $18,000, and at least 77 percent of our aid recipients have some form of loans.

We note the rise over the years in the number of undergraduates at Penn State who receive some form of financial aid, including scholarship and grant dollars as well. 

 Such debt is a major disincentive for many lower-income students, and it could hurt our ability to attract students who need a Penn State education. 

 
SLIDE #30 -- Dollar Amount of Aid Provided

The dollar amount of aid provided to Penn State undergraduates since 1992 has grown substantially, reaching nearly $406 million in 2002. This is aid from all sources, but the steep increase you see in this graph is mostly due to rising loan aid. Of the $406 million in 2001-2002, Penn State provided our students with more than $51 million in financial aid.

 

SUMMARY

I have summarized several major demographic trends that are having and will continue to have a tremendous impact on higher education in Pennsylvania and across the country.

 

SLIDE # 31 – Pennsylvania’s Demographic Trends

            We have really only scratched the surface regarding the implications for higher education of these demographic trends.  I hope I have given you a glimpse, however, of some of the unique challenges and opportunities we face in the decade ahead. These trends and the interrelationships among the trends will impact whom you will be teaching and how you will teach them; whom you will work with; and what resources will exist for all of us to use in doing our work.

            In short, these demographics tell our future -- and it is a future filled with enormous challenge. Thank you and now I’d like to open this up for discussion.

 

 

President Spanier responded to questions in the following topic areas:

 

  1. Legislative interest in the proportion of in-state and out-of-state students at Penn State.
  2. Utilization of Grand Destiny funds targeted for scholarships to increase diversity.
  3. Penn State’s role in stimulating Pennsylvania’s economy.
  4. Student debt burden and implications for the number of credits in four-year degree programs (length-of-time to degree).
  5. Opportunities for study abroad experiences for students and research exchange opportunities for faculty.      
  6. Loan debt and loan forgiveness programs.  Need for additional scholarship support to offset rising tuition.
  7. Campuses with residence halls attracting out-of-state students.  Building new residence hall at campuses that do not have them.

 

NEW LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS

 

None

 

COMMENTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE GOOD OF THE UNIVERSITY

 

None

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

The September 16, 2003, meeting of the University Faculty Senate was adjourned at 3:25 p.m.

 

            The next meeting of the University Faculty Senate will be on October 28, 2003.



THE FOLLOWING SENATORS WERE IN ATTENDANCE AT THE

SEPTEMBER 16, 2003 SENATE MEETING

 

Achterberg, Cheryl

Adams, Christopher

Alcock, James

Althouse, P. Richard

Ambrose, Anthony

Anderson, Douglas

Arnold, Judd

Atchley, Anthony

Atwater, Deborah

Barney, Paul

Barshinger, Richard

Bazirjian, Rosann

Becker, Paul

Benson, Thomas

Berkowitz, Leonard

Berlyand, Leonid

Bernhard, Michael

Bettig, Ronald

Bise, Christopher

Bittner, Edward

Blasko, Dawn

Book, Patricia

Boothby, Thomas

Breakey, Laurie

Bridges, K. Robert

Brinker, Dan

Brown, Douglas

Browne, Stephen

Browning, Barton

Brunsden, Victor

Burchard, Charles

Burgess, Robert

Burkhart, Keith

Cale, William

Calvert, Clay

Cameron, Craig

Cancro, John

Cardamone, Michael

Carlson, Richard

Carpenter, Lynn

Carter, Arthur

Casteel, Mark

Catchen, Gary

Cecere, Joseph

Challis, John        

Cheney, Debora

Chorney, Michael

Chu, Chao-Hsien

Clark, Paul

Clark-Evans, Christine

Cohen, Jeremy

Cole, Milton

 


Coraor, Lee

Corbets, Jeffrey

Corwin, Elizabeth

Costantino, Roselyn

Cox-Foster, Diana

Cranage, David

Curran, Brian

Curtis, Wayne

Davis, Dwight

De Jong, Gordon

DeCastro, W. Travis

Deines, Peter

Disney, Diane

Donovan, James

DuPont-Morales, M.

Earnshaw, Valerie

Eckhardt, Caroline

Egolf, Roger

Elder, James

Ellis, Bill

Engelder, Terry

Enis, Charles

Erickson, Rodney

Eslinger, Paul

Esposito, Jacqueline

Evensen, Dorothy

Falzone, Christopher

Farmer, Edgar

Fernandez-Jimenez, Juan

Fisher, Charles

Floros, Joanna

Fortese, Ryan

Frank, Thomas

Franz, George

Gates, Zachary

Georgopulos, Peter

Gilmour, David

Glumac, Thomas

Goldstein, Lynda

Gorby, Christine  

Gouran, Dennis

Gray, Timothy

Green, David

Hagen, Daniel

Hanes, Madlyn

Hanley, Elizabeth

Hannan, John

Harmonosky, Catherine

Harvey, Irene

Harwood, John

Heinsohn, Robert

Hellmann, John

   


High, Kane

Holcomb, E. Jay

Holen, Dale

Horton, Rodney

Horwitz, Alan

Hufnagel, Pamela

Hutchinson, Susan

Irwin, Zachary

Jacobs, Janis

Jago, Deidre

Johnson, Ernest

Jonson, Michael

Kane, Eileen

Keefe, Matthew

Kennedy, Richard

Khalilollahi, Amir

Koul, Ravinder

Kunze, Donald

Lau, Andrew

Le, Binh

Lee, Sukyoung

Levin, Deborah

Li, Luen-Chau

Long, Thomas

Lynch, Christopher

MacCarthy, Stephen                         

Malloy, Robert

Mara, Cynthia

Marshall, J. Daniel

Marshall, Wayne

Mason, John

Mattila, Anna

Maxwell, Kevin

May, James

McCarty, Ronald 

McCorkle, Sallie

Mcdonel, James

Mengisteab, Kidane

Meyers, Craig

Milakofsky, Louis

Miller, Arthur

Monicat, Benedicte

Monk, David

Mookerjee, Rajen

Moore, John

Mootz, Francis

Moses, Wilson

Mueller, Alfred

Myers, Jamie

Osagie, Iyunolu

Osagie, Sylvester

Pangborn, Robert

 


Pauley, Laura

Pell, Eva

Perrine, Joy

Petriello, Gene

Pietrucha, Martin

Pugh, B. Frank

Pytel, Jean

Rannels, D. Eugene

Rebane, P. Peter

Repko, Melissa

Ricard, Peter

Richards, David

Ricketts, Robert

Romano, John

Romberger, Andrew

Ropson, Ira

Roth, Gregory

Russell, David

Sachs, Howard

Sathianathan, Dhushy

Scaroni, Alan

Schengrund, Cara-Lynne

Schmiedekamp, Ann

Schwartz, Erica

Secor, Robert

Selzer, John

Semali, Ladislaus

Shea, Dennis

 

 

Simmonds, Patience

Simons, Richard

Simpson, Timothy                                  

Singh, Harjit

Slagle, Katie

Smith, Carol

Smith, Edward

Smith, James

Sommese, Kristin

Spanier, Graham

Spychalski, John

Steiner, Kim

Sternad, Dagmar

Stevens, John

Stimpson, Colleen

Stoffels, Shelley

Strauss, James

Su, Mila

Szczygiel, Bonj

Tachibana, Reiko

Thomchick, Evelyn

Tikalsky, Paul

Tormey, Brian

Triponey, Vicky

Troxell, D. Joshua

Turner, Tramble

Vandiver, Beverly

 

Vgontzas, Alexandros

Vickers, Anita

Voigt, Robert

Wade, Richard

Wager, J. James

Wagner, Kristy

Walters, Robert

Weidemann, Craig

Welch, Susan

Werner, Douglas

White, Eric

Wiens-Tuers, Barbara

Wijekumar, Kay

Willits, Billie

Wilson, Matthew

Wyatt, Nancy

Yoder, Edgar

Zervanos, Stamatis

Ziegler, Gregory

 

 

210 Total Elected

    7 Total Ex Officio

  13 Total Appointed

230 TOTAL ATTENDING




TENTATIVE AGENDA FOR OCTOBER 28, 2003


[In the case of severe weather conditions or other emergencies, please call the Senate Office at (814) 863-0221 to determine if a Senate meeting has been postponed or canceled. This may be done after business office hours by calling the Senate Office number and a voice mail message can be heard concerning the status of any meeting.]


Senate Self-Study - Final Report: Restructuring and Improving the Operation and Procedures of the University Faculty Senate (Advisory/Consultative)


Faculty Benefits - Employee Benefits Update for 2003: Health Plans (Informational)


University Planning - Presentation by Rodney A. Erickson, Executive Vice President and Provost (Informational)


University Planning - Status of Construction (Informational)