Vicki L. Tate
USA Faculty Senate Chair’s Report
For March 19, 2008 Faculty Senate Meeting


Faculty Senate Executive Committee, March 5, 2008
The Executive Committee is looking into the campus gun bills, sponsored by Sen. Erwin, and currently in the Education Committee of the Alabama Senate.  The issue will be brought before Pres. Moulton for feedback. 

Dr. Semoon Chang (MCOB) and his wife have endowed a humanitarian award for service through the USA Development Office.  It is to be presented to a member of the USA faculty/staff/student/alumni.  It was the request of Dr. Chang that the award be managed by the Faculty Senate, since it was originally planned to be given to a faculty member.  But because it has been expanded to include more than just faculty, the senate may not be the most appropriate venue for managing the award.  Acceptance of managing the award may also required changes in the Senate’s bylaws.  Further negotiations will need to be made with Dr. Chang and his wife before a final decision is made.

Preparations for the spring elections are being made.  Notices will be sent out to the caucus leaders the first week of March.  The results of the election should be submitted to the senate secretary by March 31st.

Campaign Leadership meeting, March 12, 2008
The USA Campaign Leadership is close (86%) to meeting their goal of $75,000,000 for the university’s first comprehensive fund-raising campaign.  After two full years, the university has received pledges and donations of $64,751,713 from 17,008 donors through 29,348 gifts.  Most of the colleges have either reached their goals or are well along their way:

Arts & Sciences 296% of $1 million
Continuing Education 68% of $250,000
MCOB 581% of $1 million
Medicine 239% of $3 million
Nursing  147% of $1 million
Engineering  112%  of $1 million
Children’s & Women’s Hosp. 98% of $3.42 million
Mitchell Cancer Inst. 146% of $21 million

Most of the funds will be used for endowed scholarships or endowed chairs within the colleges, as well as tangible services such as equipment and building improvements.  There are some colleges or units that are having less success in meeting their goals, so the USA Development Office will be placing special emphasis on them during the final year of the drive:

CIS    30% of $1 million
Education 18% of $1 million
Baldwin County 2% of $1 million
Library  3% of $1 million
Medical Center  3% of $2.5 million

The goal for the next six months (Sept. 2008) of Campaign Leadership is $5,124,143.

The Faculty/Staff Annual Fund Drive has started up.  Notices have been sent to all employees of the university.  The goal this year is to reach $375,000 with a 66% employee participation level.

The Development Office has already started receiving inquiries regarding donations to the new football program.  The Budweiser-Busch Distributing has made the first corporate pledge of $50,000 in unrestricted funds for the new USA football team. 


USA Board of Trustees, Committee of the Whole meeting, March 12, 2008
The new USA Long-Range Planning Goals and Objectives (2008-2013) have been finalized and will be presented at the general board meeting.  Both the university’s mission statement and vision statement are shorter, more concise and include an acknowledgement that we are in a “global community”.  The current goals are based on previous goals, though the wording has changed.  A new goal has been added, which is “to promote research and scholarly activities.”

The USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital requested that the university initiate the necessary planning and engineering studies to expand and improve C&WH.  This is in addition to the current request to re-landscape and change the entry to the facility that was made at the December board meeting.

Alpha South Building needs to be renovated so the Army ROTC can relocate there to allow their old site near the Mitchell Center to be used for the Bell Tower.  A bid for the cost of the renovation will be submitted to the board for approval.  There was also a bid for the construction of the Central Energy Plant Satellite Facility, to be built near the College of Medicine, in preparation of the need for additional energy for the new student recreation center and as a backup energy facility for the new Allied Health/Nursing building.

The year-to-date review of the Endowment Investment Performance showed a drop in investment, which was to be expected given the current economic climate.


USA Board of Trustees, General meeting, March 13, 2008
The meeting started out with a review of the university’s receipt of federally funded programs and earmarks.  Over the past 11 fiscal years, the university has received $155,426,796 in federal funds for various programs.  Prior to FY 98 the university had received no federal funds.  These funds have greatly benefitted the university over the years in establishing new programs and enhancing existing ones.  The largest single earmark was this past year for the “Engineering and Science Center.”  Thirty million dollars was added to the $10 million from FY06, which will allow the plans to go forward to construct a new building for the Colleges of Engineering and Computer Information Science.  The Mitchell Cancer Institute has received over $33 million federal dollars over the past eight years.

There was a resolution passed honoring this past year’s achievements of men’s basketball Coach Ronnie Arrow.  The new football coach, Joey Jones, was introduced.

Dr. Robert Moore was introduced as the new Chair of Speech Pathology and Audiology.  Dr. Mike Jacobs (Nursing) was introduced as the new head of the medical simulation program.  A new PhD program for Combined Clinical and Counseling Psychology, offered jointly by the Dept of Psychology (A&S) and Professional Studies Dept (Educ) is well on its way for approval by the Commission on Higher Education.  No opposition is expected.

The university will be increasing the stipends for graduate assistantships.  Also, thanks to additional funding by the USA Foundation, more than 20 new research fellowships have been created and will be spread among the Engineering College, Environmental & Toxicology program, CIS, Allied Health and the new PhD in Psychology. 


Executive Committee meeting with President Moulton, March 17, 2008
The Executive Committee brought two issues to the President:  the campus gun bills in the Alabama Senate and the campus security plan.  Pres. Moulton does not believe either gun bill has a chance of making it out of committee, but they are watching the issue.  There was no indication that the administration will be taking a formal position regarding the bills, though that may change if the bills proceed further. 

As for campus security, the administration is working with the new Dean of Student Affairs, Dr. Smith, and the university police in revising and updating the current policy.  They are looking into installing 4-5 loud speakers, similar to tornado warning system, across campus to allow information to be broadcasted to the largest number of people at once.  They are also looking into WARYN (wide-area rapid notification system) that could send voice messages or emails to cell phones of students, staff or faculty if they sign up for the service.  They will be doing a “walk through” of the campus at night to address problem areas for lighting.  There is no consideration of installing emergency notification boxes across campus because they are considered to be not as effective with most people having access to cell phones.  They are considering posting “what to do in case of emergency” notices in every classroom with emergency contact numbers (511 for on-campus phones and 460-6312 for cell phones).  When asked about the possibility of having workshops for training faculty and staff on what to do in case of workplace violence, it was suggested that these be done on a department/college level, through the campus police department.

Chair-elect Sachs asked Pres. Moulton about the latest USA Foundation Board’s distribution of funds.  It is still the university’s position that the Foundation could contribute more funds for the University’s use.  The national average of university foundation giving is around 4.6% of their endowments.  The USA Foundations gives on the average between 2%-2.5% of their endowment.  All of their giving is earmarked for specific programs rather than allowing the University to decide the best place to use the funds.  When looking specifically at the disproportionate share funds (DSH) that the University gave to the Foundation during the 1990’s, over the period of the last seven years, from 2001 to 2007, the total distribution of these funds from the Foundation to the University was $19,871,000, or 2.02% of net assets, while those same funds generated revenue for the Foundation of $86,576,000, or 22.95% of earnings.  If the Foundation were to have distributed the funds at the rate of 4%, the University could have received almost $20 million more.


University of South Alabama  -  Faculty Senate -  Mobile, AL 36688-0002
For comments or questions about our web site, please E-mail ap.
Last date changed: March 20, 2008

USA Logo