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Senate Summary | April 29, 2024

If you missed the Academic Senate meeting on April 29, 2024, or need a refresher, keep reading for the highlights from the meeting. For more information on the Academic Senate, click here.

Special Order

Senate Leadership Elections

Ken Monson, chair of the Senate Personnel and Elections Committee, shared the senate leadership election results.

The Senate Personnel & Elections Committee (SPEC) is a policy-mandated committee of faculty members representing all University of Utah academic units. Its charge includes ensuring that university faculty governance elections and committee nominations, for a wide range of senate and university committees, are fair, objective and meet policy requirements. Its annual report and announcement of election results were presented, as well as its administering the in-meeting election for the 2024-25 Senate President-elect and Senate Executive Committee members. Those election result announcements are:

Academic Senate President-elect (Academic Year 2025-26)

  • Richard Priess (Humanities)

Academic Senate Executive Committee (Academic Year 2024-25)

  • Nanette Dudley (Medicine)
  • Thomas Cheatham (Pharmacy)
  • Tom Richmond (Science)
  • Brent Milne (Dentistry)
  • Julia Franklin (Health)
  • Carol Sansone (Social and Behavioral Science)
  • Yihui Pan (Business)
  • Julie Wright Costa (Fine Arts)
  • Tucker Hermans (Engineering)
  • Maureen Mathison (Humanities)
  • Mark Loewen (Mines and Earth Sciences)
  • Kevin Perry (Mines and Earth Sciences)

Senate Committee Election Results and Utah Asia Campus (UAC)

Ken Monson, chair of the Senate Personnel and Elections Committee, presented the following:

The Senate Personnel and Elections Committee announced the results of this year’s election to fill 2024-25 Senate Committee faculty vacancies. In total, 31 faculty were elected by voting senators to serve on six different Senate Committees including the Senate Advisory Committee and Academic Policy and Senate Faculty Review Standards Committee. Additionally, 2024 was the first year when Utah Asia Campus (UAC) faculty were invited to include their names for nomination consideration on select Senate Committees. The Academic Senate congratulates all the newly elected faculty, including the two UAC faculty elected to join the Senate Committee on Academic Freedom and Faculty Rights.

Information & Recommendation Calendar

Graduate Council 7-year Review: Department of Mathematics

Helene Shugart presented the following:

Department of Mathematics

The Department of Mathematics offers four undergraduate degree major tracks, four master’s degrees and one doctoral degree; it is also a vital pedagogical contributor to units across the university. The department is widely recognized in the discipline for its scholarly excellence and distinctions across both pure and applied mathematics—it is described by disciplinary peer reviewers as “elite”—and its graduates and postdoctoral fellows are very well served professionally and academically. The department is encouraged to continue to develop practices and protocols relative to the training and mentoring of faculty, graduate students and instructors; as well as clarity and transparency of departmental policies and processes.

Annual Report from SAC-EDI

Christy Porucznik, Ph.D., chair SAC-EDI presented the annual report from the Senate Advisory Committee on EDI including a summary of the three listening sessions on the topic of belonging.

College of Education Charter Revisions

Breda O’Keeffe, Ph.D., College of Education Council chair, and associate professor in special education presented the following:

The College of Education Council proposed and approved revisions to its College Charter. The Executive Committee of the Academic Senate approved the revisions on April 15, 2024. The revisions included adding a Staff Standing Committee (for improved communication and support of staff); increasing the number of career line faculty elected to the Council Executive Committee; increasing the length of time for the staff representative on the Council Executive from one year to three years (to match other representatives’ time); specifying no standing college faculty appointments advisory committee; clarified Retention, Promotion, and Tenure (RPT) committee procedures to assure policy alignment; revisions to the Scholarship Committee membership to flex based on number of applications; simplified amendment of the charter procedures; and suggested revisions from the Office for Faculty for clarity, references to policy.

New Emphases for Chemical Engineering Students

Anthony Butterfield, associate chair and professor (lecturer), Department of Chemical Engineering presented on the following:

In response to student and industry needs and professional ethics, the Department of Chemical Engineering is proposing four new emphases.

  1. Environmental & Sustainability
  2. Biochemical Engineering & Bioprocessing
  3. Semiconductor Processing
  4. Computational Methods & Data Science

These emphases will aid our students in their development of skills needed for specific areas of chemical engineering innovation, and aid their employers in finding qualified candidates to meet current societal challenges.