Academic Staff Executive Committee Minutes 01-06-22
2:00 – 4:30 p.m. Thursday, January 6, 2022
Members Present: Donna Cole, Jenny Dahlberg; Tim Dalby, chair; Stephanie Elkins; Stephanie Jones; Mallory Musolf; Lindsey Stoddard Cameron; Bill Tishler
Guests: Lesley Fisher, Lori Getter, Eden Inoway-Ronnie, John Lucas, Karen Massetti-Moran, Karl Scholz, Patrick Sheehan, Scott Wildman
The meeting was called to order at 2:02 p.m.
The minutes of December 9 were approved.
Tim Dalby, ASEC Chair, reported on the meeting with ASEC leadership and OHR on December 14. TTC, Mark Walters’ retirement, and the youth protection policy were all topics of discussion. There was also an ASEC listening hour on that day, at which a question was raised about the effect of the extension of the TTC appeals deadlines on appeals in progress. Tim attended the Letters & Science CASI meeting on December 15, during which staff morale, resources, and TTC were all discussed. The CASI will continue to meet virtually for the spring. At the recent meeting of the chiefs of staff, chairs, and secretaries, there was discussion of the campus mask mandate being extended through March 1. Unvaccinated employees and students will continue to test weekly, and more testing will be available once students arrive on campus. It is expected that there will be finalists for the UW System President Search in mid-January, and listening sessions have been announced for the Chancellor search.
Jake Smith, Secretary of the Academic Staff, discussed the liaison and committee vacancies after Leslie Petty’s departure. Donna Cole volunteered to serve as the liaison to the International Division CASI, and ASEC approved Stephanie Elkins to serve as the ASEC representative on the Ad Hoc Committee on Academic and University Staff Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Jake provided an update on the campus-wide climate survey initiative. Kelly will be providing a draft to Jake for ASEC’s review in the coming weeks. Jake reminded attendees about the upcoming listening sessions for the Chancellor’s search. There will be one for academic staff at large and another for instructional academic staff. The TTC Governance Advisory Group had its final meeting, though issues will continue to be routed to Karen and her team as needed. The Administrative Quality Satisfaction Survey will be launching later in the month, which is designed to capture data on a variety of administrative services across campus and will provide some baseline information for the Administrative Transformation Project. Applications for Academic Staff Excellence Awards are due on January 24.
Donna Cole reported on the meeting of the SMPH CASI, at which issues were discussed related to a SMPH employee survey that is in development.
Mallory Musolf reported that the UW System Representatives were notified that each governance group will have two designees that will meet with the candidates for UW System President on January 18. Lynn Niemi and Joe Quintana will serve in this capacity for the Academic Staff Reps. All of the reps will be gathering questions for the candidates by next Wednesday.
Lindsey Stoddard Cameron has talked with the Nominating Committee chair regarding increasing diversity of committee membership and how to partner with the committee as its liaison. She will also be working with the Districting and Representation Committee in February to assist in the committee’s ongoing review of titles and districting.
Stephanie Elkins reported that the Wisconsin Public Media CASI discussed the salary data that came from OHR with regard to the public broadcasting job group. WPM’s HR department is doing further research on salaries in this space.
Guest: Karl Scholz, Provost
Provost Scholz reported on a variety of administrative searches, including the Director of Wisconsin Public Media, the Director of the Global Health Institute, the Dean of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, and the UW System President. Jocelyn Milner is transitioning out of her role as Director of Academic Planning and Institutional Research this month, and Allison La Tarte will be serving as the interim director. There will also be searches for a new Chancellor and a new Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration in the spring.
Regarding spring planning, it is expected that spring will look very similar to fall semester. Students are moving back into housing. The mask policy for campus has been extended to March 1, and there will continue to be testing of unvaccinated students. We are asking students to have a negative test both before traveling to Madison and once they arrive. Campus is working hard to secure more isolation and quarantine space as needed. With respect to instruction, instructors are being encouraged to design attendance policies that recognize higher levels of absence and to explore ways to have course access for those who aren’t able to attend (e.g. alternative assignments that achieve learning outcomes). If an instructor needs to isolate/quarantine, they should work with department leadership if they need to be absent from in-person instruction. Deans will be working with Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning John Zumbrunnen on these issues. There will also be a concentrated effort to promote boosters for both students and employees. There are no changes to campus event policy at present. Antigen tests will be available for all students in university housing, and there will be drop-in times for off-campus students to get antigen tests as well.
Guest: Beth Meyerand, Vice Provost for Faculty and Staff Affairs
Assistant Vice Provost Kelly Rupp is working on a campus-wide climate survey with a number of individuals, including the Secretary’s office. ASEC will be provided a draft for review next week. The Provost Office is taking an active role in this initiative, working closely with DDEEA and the Survey Center. All groups working on the survey will have access to the data.
Another initiative for the spring leads to discussion on ASEC’s question about baseline data on hostile and intimidating behavior (HIB). Vice Provost for Academic Operations Jennifer Noyes is meeting with HR in schools/colleges/divisions and asking questions about how HIB is tracked at that level. She is about halfway through the process of canvassing them to find out what their strategies have been and what they might do differently. The next step is potentially to form a committee this spring to look at policy around this.
Vice Provost Meyerand has communicated with deans and department chairs about the availability of professorial titles for academic staff and is interested in ASEC’s ideas. There are some impressions that TTC has impacted the rollout of these titles. ASEC expressed the necessity of communicating that these titles are not only for new recruitments but also for employees who are already performing the commensurate duties and responsibilities associated with these titles. Any opportunities to promote these in chairs’ chats or new chair welcome should be explored as well. ASEC also discussed reaching out to holders of the honorific research professor titles and to departmental administrators.
Guests: Patrick Sheehan, Interim Chief Human Resources Officer, and Karen Massetti-Moran, Director of Total Rewards, Office of Human Resources
Patrick introduced himself as the interim CHRO. He has been on campus for 12 years, beginning in OHR in Workforce Relations. He was the HR strategy lead for ATP for the last two years. The search for the new Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration will be completed before the search begins for the new Chief HR Officer. Patrick’s priorities for the interim role include: 1) building and maintaining relationships, including with shared governance partners; 2) moving critical initiatives forward, such as TTC and ATP, as well as advocating for Madison’s interests in ATP; and 3) worklife balance and better ways of promoting it, along with addressing pandemic-related issues. Promoting recruitment capabilities, supporting retention efforts, and recognition of the competitive labor market are all crucial as well. The work of the Equity, Inclusion, and Well-Being unit in OHR is a priority.
The TTC appeals deadline has been extended to February 4 to give people more time to file, as well as to give people more time for informal conversations and resolutions. As of yesterday afternoon, there were 204 records in the system, with 104 in draft. There have been 202 informal resolutions, with 135 of those being academic staff. From what has been submitted thus far, there are no discernable trends in terms of title. OHR has also had conversations with the HR community about what they’re seeing in terms of informal resolutions. OHR also has a log with a variety of issues that have been raised outside of the individual appeal process. IT is one of those issues in the log, albeit with a much wider impact. The team is working through a number of concerns related to IT and hopes to make definitive decisions by the end of the month. There are also issues related to the sponsored programs, grants, and contracts area. A number of concerns came in as to how those titles are being used. OHR did an initial analysis and are in discussions with OVCRGE. There are also a number of individual situations being looked at in addition to the broader issues in job groups. If employees have submitted appeals through the system and haven’t heard anything, their first point of communication would be their local HR.
Motion to Convene in Closed Session Pursuant to Wis. Stats. 19.85(1)(c), and (f) to Discuss Appointment to the University Academic Planning Council (Dahlberg). Seconded. Approved.
Motion to Reconvene in Open Session (Cole). Seconded. Approved.
· Appointment – for vote
Stephanie Jones was elected to serve as ASEC’s representative to the University Academic Planning Council.
· February Assembly Meeting Agenda
ASEC reviewed a first draft of the February agenda and discussed potential topics for Chancellor Blank, who will address the Assembly at that meeting.
Meeting adjourned at 4:27 p.m.
Minutes submitted by Jake Smith, Secretary of the Academic Staff