FACULTY WELFARE COMMITTEE
1998-1999 ACADEMIC YEAR
The Faculty Welfare Committee met at least monthly and considered a wide variety of matters of relevance to faculty welfare during the 1998-1999 academic year.
The Committee had a representative on the Childrens Center Task Force who reported regularly on its activities and recommendations. Although the Committee has a continuing interest in the availability of child care, we thought it would be best to wait until this task force had completed its work before considering any possible actions.
Several issues were brought to the Committee concerning various aspects of distance education; those relevant to Faculty Welfare include intellectual property rights and workload assignments. We think that the importance of distance education is growing and that the University needs to have well thought out and articulated policies for its management. We have arranged for a representative to attend at least the first meeting of the Distance Education Advisory Committee and hope that a joint effort will be productive.
The Committee met with the Director of Assessment to discuss possible approaches to assessment of faculty concerns in various areas. A plan will be developed during the coming year.
Faculty Enrichment Fund
The Committee worked with the Senate Chair, the Development Officer for the Family Fund, and the Chair of the Staff Development Committee in the establishment of a Faculty Enrichment Fund. This fund will be used for activities of benefit to faculty, such as flu shots, and will be funded in a manner similar to the Staff Development Fund. Procedures for allocating funds and managing the account will need to be developed during the coming year.
The Committee reviewed several proposed policies related to computer hardware, software, and data and recommended some changes. Some of these recommendations were accepted.
While the University has several programs of teaching awards and grants for faculty, these are currently limited to tenure track faculty. The Committee feels that the teaching efforts and excellence demonstrated by non-tenure track instructional faculty members also deserve recognition and support. The Committee developed a proposal for a new program of Instructional Enhancement Grants to support teaching innovation by instructional faculty, who are not eligible for current grant programs. This recommendation has been submitted to the Provost.
The Committee met with the Director of Vehicle Management and Parking to discuss faculty concerns relative to plans for changes in the parking system to incorporate more perimeter parking and shuttle buses. We also suggested changes to a draft questionnaire on parking to better capture faculty work and travel patterns. (This questionnaire has been on hold and has not yet been distributed.) We plan to continue work with Vehicle Management and Parking during the coming year to ensure that faculty interests are adequately represented.
Policies and Procedures
The Committee reviewed several University policies and procedures for potential changes. Some changes were recommended; discussion of others will be carried over into the coming year. In addition, some concerns over whether policies and procedures are being implemented as written were raised.
The Committee met with several research faculty from one department to discuss concerns relevant to research faculty status. The Committee provided them with the information obtained from Human Resources on the numbers and distribution of non-tenure track faculty. They will consult with research faculty from other departments and prepare a recommendation for the Committee. This will be considered during the 1999-2000 academic year.
The possibility of full retirement with 25 or 28 years of service was investigated by the Committee, and a report of legislative activity in this area was made. A suggestion was received that the possibility of a retirement condominium located on or near the University be considered but has not yet been persued. The issue of equity in retirement packages from the University was brought to the committee towards the end of the year and will be considered during 1999-2000.
The Committee received several comments, primarily but not exclusively from the College of Liberal Arts, concerning both salaries in general and specifically the handling of raises for the 1998-1999 academic year. We reviewed these complaints and the report of the Salary Equity Oversight Committee and then sent a letter with several recommendations to the Provost.
Caroline M. Eastman, Chair Faculty Welfare Committee, 1998-1999
This page updated 23 August 1999 by the Office of the Faculty Senate,
and copyright 1999, The Board of Trustees of the University of South Carolina.