Faculty Senate convenes for monthly meeting

Mackenzie Mathews

Faculty Senate convened today with a special guest to start the meeting off.

Deborah Wilkins, WKU general counsel, met with the senate to discuss an IT policy concerning email privacy and access. Few were worried about the lack of privacy in student and faculty email, but those that were wished to be informed if access was needed.

“I’m not going to search anything until I verify or have a subpoena,” Wilkins said.

Faculty regent Patricia Miller then spoke on WKU’s current financial situation. The budget cut has been reduced to 1.5%, thereby saving the school $750,000. State funded mandates also increased by 50%, leaving an extra $1.3 million that WKU does not have to pay.

Provost Gordon Emslie kept items rolling with the Colonnade Program’s swift approval. He then brought up tuition revenue not being as low as initially thought, though enrollment is still on the decline.

Although several faculty positions have been eliminated, the faculty to student ration is still increasing at 36 to 1.

“Despite the challenges we have faced, we were able to make a budget for next year that preserves staffing,” Emslie said.

A resolution was brought up pertaining to sudden changes on South Campus that were carried out without faculty knowledge. The resolution would allot for planned revisions regarding South Campus, and it was passed with no discussion.

Several Colonnade Program courses, including sciences, history and criminal justice, were left for approval.

Mac McKerral then brought up amendments proposed by the Handbook Committee. All were passed, except for Lecturer Appointments, which had been moved to return to the committee after brief discussion.

Faculty reimbursement from travelling between campuses passed with no discussion, along with the Budget Committee’s charter revision draft.

Post-Senate policy revisions and the Full-Time staff teaching assignment brought up the end of propositions with full concurrence from the Senate.

Elections for new Senate officers occurred with no changes, for all current officers remained in their seats with Chair Margaret Crowder, Vice Chair Jennifer Hanley and Secretary Heidi Alvarez.

The meeting closed with the colleges meeting to discuss committee memberships.