November 15, 2001
Present: Robert Grainger, Robert Davis, David Brautigan, Michael Levenson, Robert O'Connell, Pamela Kulbok, Joshua Kempner, Daniel Hallahan, Kathryn Neeley, Houston Wood, Michael Smith, Julian Connolly, Peter Baker
Guest: Yoke San Reynolds, Vice President for Finance
Robert Grainger called the meeting to order.
Robert Davis, Chair of the Academic Affairs Committee, reported that the committee is divided into three subcommittees to address the Committee's charges. The subcommittees are: Dissertation-Year Fellowships, Robert J. Davis, Chair; Graduate Student Funding, Robert O'Connell, Chair; and Graduate Student Support, Non-Funding Issues, Richard Warner,Chair.
Robert O'Connell reported on the focus of the Graduate Student Funding Subcommittee's work. He commented that graduate student funding at the University is a very serious problem that needs to be addressed, and a case made for improving graduate funding. He said there are different issues to be addressed for the professional graduate student than for other graduate programs, such as Engineering, Nursing, and Commerce. Recruiting efforts and a mechanism for funding these non-professional graduate students need to be addressed, Mr. O'Connell said. The University has experienced a decline in graduate student enrollment. The Subcommittee needs additional information on tuition differentials and tuition remissions. What are the policies? What is the funding mechanism? Does the University have the ability to change the policies? In-State tuition is $5,000 per year and out-of-state tuition is $18,000.
Yoke San Reynolds talked about graduate student funding issues and answered some of the group's questions concerning how this process works at the University. Ms. Reynolds said the University's present model is out of balance, as created 15 years ago. This is due in part because of shifts in enrollment and the in-State tuition freeze. Ms. Reynolds distributed a rough draft that outlines two funding models for addressing the problem, and she said other models are also being looked at. A proposal that would allow the University to increase in-State graduate tuition will go before the Board of Visitors.
The question was asked "Why can't the University change their funding model for graduate students so that our model more closely matches what successful institutions are doing?" The Subcommittee on Graduate Student Funding will get data (their graduate student packet) on what other schools are doing to support their graduate students. Other people that should be invited to a meeting and share input on this issue are Robert Huskey and Shirley Menaker - in addition to continued work with Yoke San Reynolds.
The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.
Submitted by Kathryn Neeley, Secretary of the Faculty Senate.