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University Senate Minutes - October 11, 2004

The University Senate met on Monday, October 11, 2004 at 3:00 pm in the Auditorium of the Young Library and took the following actions.

Members absent: Alexander, Anderman, Baldwin, Barker, Berryman*, Bhavsar*, Biagi, Blackwell, Blandford, Braun, Butler, Carter, Catavolos*, Cheng*, Cibulka, Cohen, Darnall, Deem*, DeSimone, Duffy*, Duke*, Durant, Ellis, Filak, Fink*, Gaetke, Garen, Gargola, Getchell, Grabau, Greasley*, Hanson, Harrison*, Haven*, Hoffman, Jackson*, Jefferies*, Johnson, Kerley, Kraemer, Lester, Look*, Martin, McCormick, McKinney, Michael*, Mobley, Mohney, Noonan*, Owen, Peffer*, Perrier*, Portillo, Pulito, Randall*, Ray*, Roberts, Robinson, Roland*, Shaw, Shay, Smith, S., Sottile, Steltenkamp, Sudharshan, Thelin*, Todd, Tsang, Turner, Vasconez*, Vestal, Walker, Williams, C., Williams, E., Wise, Witt.

*Denotes excused absence.

1. Approval of the Minutes from September 13, 2004

The Chair asked for correction to the minutes. Gesund and Burk provided some suggestions. Ms. Scott will correct the minutes. The minutes were approved as corrected.

2. Announcements

The Chair announced that Grossman will chair the Ad Hoc Committee on Academic Offenses and Eldred will chair the Ad Hoc Committee on Graduation Writing Requirements. He also announced the President's approval of a proposal to study and renovate the liberal arts curriculum. He added that more information will be available once the details have been discussed by the Senate Council, the Provost and the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education.

The Chair advised the Senators to be mindful of the upcoming Senate Council elections and encouraged them to consider running. He indicated that paper ballots will be distributed within a few weeks. He also noted the Senate Council office's upcoming move to the Main Building and begged the patience of the Senate during the short time during which e-mail access would be difficult.

3. Orthopedics Proposal

Orthopedics Proposal (PDF)

The Chair introduced the item and provided some background. He informed the Senate that the proposal to administratively reorganize the division of Orthopaedics into a Department of Orthopedics had been approved by the Academic Organization and Structure Committee (DOC) and had been forwarded to the Senate by the Senate Council with no recommendation. He noted that while extensive and thorough deliberations had occurred regarding the proposal, which meet with much approval, there were a few pockets of opposition, including the Chair of Surgery. He asked if the Chair of Surgery was present and interested in speaking, but he was not present. The Chair noted that the proposal was too lengthy to duplicate for the Senate, but said he could access it via the internet if there was need to do so during the meeting. He introduced Drs. Karpf and Perman and invited questions from the floor.

Gesund said it was difficult for the Senate to act since the Senators weren't aware that reading materials were available on the web site. Grossman noted that the materials and a link to them had been circulated via e-mail. The Chair reiterated Grossman's point.

Dembo said that one point of concern in the Senate Council was the lack of information from the Department of Surgery explaining the harm that would come to that department if Orthopedics was allowed to become a department of its own. He added that the committee and the Senate Council were both unable to interview a representative from Surgery and asked if a representative from Surgery was present and willing to speak. The Chair indicated that there was no one.

Tagavi suggested that the information made available on the web site and via e-mail should have included the motion from the Senate Council and the reason for this particular recommendation, or lack thereof. He expressed concern that the Chair's presentation would not be included in the record of the meeting. The Chair assured Tagavi that his remarks regarding the motion would indeed be part of the written record of the meeting.

Cibull noted that another concern expressed at the Senate Council meeting was the vote taken among division chiefs in which some either voted to disapprove the proposal or abstained from voting. He noted that many Orthopedics departments have been formed throughout the country and wondered how the departments from whence they came felt about their departure. Karpf replied that outside consultants had been utilized in the formation of this proposal. He indicated that UK was behind the times, and said Orthopedics would experience better progress by becoming its own department.

Jones asked if Karpf could "play devil's advocate" regarding the perceived harm to the Department of Surgery. Perman responded to the question, indicating that Surgery's concern is economic, not academic. He noted that Orthopedics is one of the subspecialties of Surgery that is relatively lucrative and that if Orthopedics leaves Surgery then the remaining subspecialties will be responsible for covering a larger share of the cost. Garrity agreed that Surgery's concerns were economic in nature, noting that the Academic Organization and Structure committee voted unanimously in favor of the proposal and that the majority of the support for the proposal originated among the faculty.

Bailey reported that when the committee met to discuss the proposal Watt and Kelly attended the meeting to answer questions, but that the Chair of Surgery did not attend. He noted that there was strong support for the belief that departmentalization would move the academic mission of Orthopedics forward. He said that while the committee was aware of the negative letters in the proposal, and brought those issues forward to the Senate Council, they had not been able to determine the substance behind the concerns.

Grossman expressed concern about the weakness of the research program in Orthopedics, as it was discussed in the proposal. Bailey noted that the division compared favorably to the departments in terms of size and noted that the clinical aspects of Orthopedics should be taken into consideration when looking at its research productivity. Perman noted that Orthopedics voted to establish a research professorship so they can attract research professors, and that they are doing so with their own funds.

Debski said that one of the other issues discussed at the Senate Council meeting was the size of the department as it related to the possibility of other divisions seeking departmental status and asked Karpf and Perman to comment. Perman noted that each request would be considered individually and should not reflect on the merit of the proposal at hand. Karpf said that compared to other departments nationally Orthopedics would be a moderate to large department.

Berger made a motion to approve the proposed reorganization of the Division of Orthopaedics to the Department of Orthopedics. Garrity seconded the motion. There being no further discussion a vote was taken. Forty-two Senators voted in favor of the motion and there were five abstentions. The motion passed.

4. NCAA Steering Committee Update

The Chair introduced John Piecoro, a member of the NCAA Steering Committee, and thanked him for providing the Senate with an update of that committee's activities. Piecoro said he was presenting the update on behalf of Vice President Connie Ray, the committee's chair, who was unable to attend the meeting. Piecoro provided some background regarding the committee's charge and outlined the structure of the committee. He explained the structure and charges of the subcommittees and Piecoro presented some of the committee's findings to the Senate and accepted questions from the floor.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:10 pm.

Respectfully submitted by Ernie Bailey
Secretary, University Senate

Prepared by Rebecca Scott on October 20, 2004.