T. Casteen III urged the faculty not to panic in the face of a
gloomy state budget forecast.
not real until its real, Casteen said of potential
offered the Faculty
Senate gloomy numbers on the state budget Dec. 6, saying the
gap between revenues and expenditures was about $1.3 billion.
were projecting two to three more quarters of recession, Casteen
reported, but the bleak numbers can be hard to nail down since
they occur at the start of a two-year budget cycle.
governor has called for 2 percent reductions in the current budget,
with no exemptions at this point for education. The state has
a $726 million rainy day fund, some of which will be used to cover
the budget shortfall and the governor has suspended the rest of
the car tax repeal.
and Graduate School of Arts & Sciences gets about 65 percent
of its money from the state, the states contribution to
U.Va.s overall academic divisions budget is 20.6 percent
of total revenues. About 75 percent of the state portion covers
governor is not likely to propose retroactive pay increases this
year. There has been discussion of a bond issue for capital projects,
as well as talk of three staggered bond issues, which Casteen
said could be a good plan.
in his remarks, Casteen said the University was working on establishing
new international programs, including summer sessions, in a variety
of venues, some of which would transfer grades back to U.Va. The
lack of grade transfer has been a drawback in promoting overseas
programs, especially for pre-med students, he noted. He also outlined
the Universitys relation with U21, an international consortium
that will offer a variety of degrees via the Internet.
other Senate business, sociology professor Paul Kingston presented
a report from the Research and Scholarship Committee, which is
sifting through applications for Harrison Research Awards. There
had been 90 applications, from 35 departments, with 47 female
applicants. They hope to award 40 grants, he said.
members have been seeking other funding sources for the undergraduate
research awards, and had consulted with Robert Sweeney, senior
vice president for development and public affairs, Kingston said.
had been faculty concern that the Harrison money would be ending
after this round. Casteen said that David A. Harrison III, who
partially funds the awards, established the program with a review
after three years, not a funds cutoff. The money, which is provided
through a trust arrangement for the duration of Harrisons
life, should continue, according to Casteen.
Senate Chair Robert Grainger, who noted that donors are often
interested in specific research, suggested funding a University-wide
office of undergraduate research. The office, he said later, would
help connect undergraduate students with research money. Such
an office could attract funds to the University and expand undergraduate
research, he said.
senators also focused on the role of graduate students, as Robert
Davis, associate professor of Environmental Science, delivered
a report from the Academic Affairs Committee advocating the creation
of social space for graduate students as part of the South Lawn
senators also discussed graduate funding issues, including a dissertation
year fellowship program to provide money for 11 graduate students.
Faculty members said the University must be competitive in attracting
graduate students, but there is a question of how to classify
them while they are teaching, since there are different pay and
benefit combinations, depending on title.
suggested a system in place in the 1950s, with such titles as
junior instructor, senior instructor and lecturer. Some of the
graduate students including foreign students are
paying out-of-state rates to attend, while playing an integral
part in research, mentoring and teaching at the University. In
some departments, the out-of-state fees are waived, but one senator
said that compared to its peers, the Universitys graduate
program was underfunded.
responded that the state was concerned that graduate students
would get an education here as residents but then not stay in
Virginia. He noted that it is hard to keep them here since Ph.D.s
are sought on a national market.