Board of Regents

Education Committee Minutes, October 2008

University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Dreyfus University Center – Alumni Room
October 2, 2008

Regent Davis convened the meeting of the Education Committee at 2:50 p.m.  Regents Davis, Crain, Cuene, Loftus, Spector, and Thomas were present.  Regent Opgenorth joined the meeting in progress.

1. UW-Stevens Point:  Presentation of Campus Academic Plan

Regent Davis welcomed those present to Stevens Point.  She then introduced UW-Stevens Point Provost Mark Nook to speak on “Leading from the Center:  Academic Programs to Advantage Central Wisconsin.”  Provost Nook welcomed Committee members, observing that they had seen the future of UW-Stevens Point in the form of all the students presenting at the lunch festival.  He explained that UW-Stevens Point was in the middle of strategic planning and while it was not yet completed, the institution’s six-year Growth Agenda would continue to set the direction for ongoing campus academic planning. 

Provost Nook emphasized the extent to which UW-Stevens Point’s mission drove all the decision-making and planning on campus, including the institution’s Vision 2015 and its values.  The campus’s academic plan, campus master plan, and enrollment management plan were all driven by the mission.  He described the emerging academic plan that would result in a completely revised General Education program. 

Provost Nook outlined the institution’s Vision 2015, with its three-pronged focus on preparing global citizens, partnerships with others (sister institutions, the business community, Wisconsin Technical College schools), and projecting UW-Stevens Point’s history and values in the life and look of the campus.  The campus’s Growth Agenda was built upon four components, including the mission, Vision 2015, Advantage Wisconsin, and the CENTERGY Report and Development.  CENTERGY, he explained, was central Wisconsin’s Regional Economic Development Initiative or REDI.  Provost Nook listed the eight principal initiatives identified in CENTERGY, each of which served to shape UW-Stevens Point’s academic plan, and emphasized the region’s recognition that baccalaureate degrees were needed in order to move economic development forward.

Provost Nook then described the five primary areas of the Stevens Point Growth Agenda, as well as the grassroots way in which the campus arrived at them, from faculty on up through chairs, deans, and senior leadership.  The five areas included the Wisconsin Institute for Sustainable Technology or WIST, the Health Sciences, Business and Economics, New Media Development, and International Programs. 

Elaborating on WIST, Provost Nook explained that the Institute involved all four colleges on campus and was grounded in research, education, and outreach.  He described the goals of the Institute, which included a focus on sustainable resource utilization, and innovation and support for the paper and wood industries.  One of the Institute’s first projects would be to work with biofuels created from paper science waste.  Faculty, students, industry and policy-makers would all be involved in the endeavor to offer research and development to regional industries.  WIST was being developed to be extremely flexible so that it could take on the next research focus or issue of sustainability after biofuels.

The Health Sciences focus of UW-Stevens Point’s Growth Agenda, continued Provost Nook, had been a part of the institution’s academic planning for some time.  He described huge student interest and hence the large growth in the Health Sciences, which had started with 60 majors and now had almost 140.  He outlined future directions for the program, including discussion with the nursing deans throughout the state and the possible development of a nursing program.  The local hospital and clinics had asked the campus to develop its own specialized nursing program.  The campus was also developing a Master of Science in Informatics degree program.

Led by CENTERGY, and in response to needs identified by the business community, Provost Nook noted a shifting direction for UW-Stevens Point’s Business and Economics program, from its previous focus on business administration to increased attention to entrepreneurship, international business, management, marketing, and Finance, Insurance, and Real Estate.  He then described the campus’s New Media Development program, which included the aforementioned Master of Science in Informatics, jointly developed with Marshfield Clinic in an innovative alliance between health sciences and new media.  The program would develop best practices for managing, using, and securing patient and hospital records.  He mentioned the need by hospitals for medical informaticians, and the campus’s intention to bring the new master’s degree program to the Board for authorization in December.  He also referenced the campus’s innovative programs in New Media design and Web and Digital Media Design.

International programs, concluded Provost Nook, was the final area of focus for UW-Stevens Point’s Growth Agenda.  He described for Committee members the campus’s strong tradition and history in this area, adding that 20 % of UW-Stevens Point graduates had studied in a foreign country.  The campus was working to make the program even stronger by developing more exchange and direct enrollment programs, including a paper science program exchange funded through FIPSE in Finland, Munich, and a school in North Carolina.

In response to a question from Regent Cuene on whether the campus’s revised General Education program would reduce the number of GE credits required, Provost Nook answered that Stevens Point had one of largest GE requirements in the country, which placed the campus outside the mainstream as noted by the Higher Learning Commission.  Most campuses required 40-45 credits of General Education courses; UW-Stevens Point required 60.  Faculty and administrators together realized that they needed to take on the reform of General Education.  Provost Nook had asked his faculty to start from scratch and develop a new mission and vision for General Education with the goal of having it in place by fall 2010.  Learning objectives were being identified and definitions were underway. Everything was on target for governance approval by spring 2009.  As a curricular matter, he explained, the reform process was in the faculty’s hands but several students were very engaged in the process with one of them even serving as co-chair of the GE committee.  In response to a question from Regent Crain, Provost Nook replied that there was nothing unusual or different in the existing General Education requirements, except their size which made the courses and requirements unwieldy for students.

Regent Loftus asked for an elaboration of the campus’s retention and graduation rate challenges.  Provost Nook responded that the six-year graduation rate was 60% and the retention rate was 75%.  Given Stevens Point’s student body, he added, it should be 82-83 %.  The campus was considering a content-based freshman interest group or seminar requirement.  While UW-Stevens Point had not identified any major retention issues, the campus did know that some of its students transferred to other UW schools, from which they subsequently graduated.  Stevens Point did not get credit for that.  Given all the movement within UW System institutions, Provost Nook recommended that the System think about tracking a systemwide retention rate, as was done for graduation rates. 

Regent Spector asked whether the campus’s move to Division 2 athletics would take away funds from the academic programs, and how the campus would then be positioned compared to other UW institutions.  Provost Nook responded that the idea was exploratory for now, adding that much of the money for athletics did not come from GPR funding but was raised privately through gifts.  He added that Minnesota has all Division 2 schools and the state recruits heavily from Wisconsin. 

Regent Davis commented on how impressed she was with Provost Nook’s knowledge of his campus, and commended the campus on its number of first-generation students which was about 40%.  In response to her question about a timeline for the new nursing and informatics programs, Provost Nook explained that the campus was following a six-year plan.  The nursing degree that the campus was exploring would be a Bachelor of Science degree-completion program.  There was lots of student demand for such a program in the region, and regional hospitals had also expressed their need.  UW-Stevens Point was working with the Wisconsin Technical College System; students would begin there and finish at Stevens Point.  Given the overlap with the other UW comprehensives, the campus is trying to work out how it would not compete with other UW institutions but rather work with, and respond to the region’s needs.

In the interest of providing context for the Education Committee, Senior Vice President Rebecca Martin presented additional information on the System’s efforts to take a statewide review of nursing, given that nursing, like engineering, was a high-cost program.  She has asked for a report that looked at statewide demand issues, the challenges in meeting those demands, and the innovative ways the UW System might address them.  The UW System has serious problems in recruiting and retaining nursing faculty and in finding enough clinical programs to meet student demand.

In response to a question from Regent Loftus, Provost Nook described the International Student House, located in London, where UW-Stevens Point students could reside when studying in England.

In response to a question from Regent Davis, Provost Nook described the campus’s diversity efforts.  UW-Stevens Point was not an Equity Scorecard campus, he informed Committee members, but was a participant in the UW System’s Campus Climate Project.  He described the diversity goals that would be a part of the University’s strategic and enrollment management planning, including targets for various student populations.  Provost Nook expressed his hope that the University would see 10% minority and international students on campus in coming years.  In response to a question from Regent Crain, Provost Nook answered that the campus had a female-to-male ratio of 55-45.

The Education Committee expressed its appreciation to Provost Nook for his presentation.

2. Report of the Chapters UWS 17 & 18 Review Committee

Regent Davis introduced Jane Radue, Assistant Director of the UW System Office of Operations Review and Audit, and Chair of the Chapters UWS 17 & 18 Review Committee.  Ms. Radue introduced the other members of the Review Committee present at the meeting, including Anne Bilder from the UW System Office of General Counsel, Jan Sheppard from the UW System Office of Academic Affairs, and Dale Burke, Assistant Police Chief from UW-Madison.  The Review Committee, she began, was charged with updating and clarifying Chapter 17 of the Wisconsin Administrative Code, which regulates student nonacademic misconduct, and Chapter 18, which regulates conduct on university lands.  The conduct regulations in Chapter 18 apply to both students and nonstudents.  She further clarified that Chapter 17 is the university’s disciplinary code, and Chapter 18 the set of rules that the university police enforce through citations and monetary penalties. 

She described three reasons for updating the two chapters:  1) the rules had not undergone a systematic review in some time and updating was needed; 2) there was growing concern on the part of some university neighbors about student misconduct off campus; and 3) recent literature on student nonacademic misconduct emphasizes an educational approach to discipline, and updating the rules allows for incorporation of more educational components into the disciplinary process. 

She then described the administrative rule-making process, observing that the Board’s approval to forward the draft rules to the Legislative Council was, in fact, an early step in the process.  Once transmitted, the Legislative Council Rules Clearinghouse would review the draft rules for technical adequacy and formatting, and then return them to the UW System for revision.  The next step in the process would be for members of the Board of Regents to hold a public hearing on the rules, followed by further revisions and submission to the Legislature.  If all went well, Ms. Radue said, the new rules would be in effect at the institutions for the start of the 2009-2010 academic year.

Ms. Radue next reviewed the core principles developed by the Review Committee to guide its work.  She called the application of the principles a balancing act, because some of them were in competition with one another.  For instance, a crucial goal was to promote the safety and security of the university community as a whole.  The protection of the whole, however, had to be balanced against the rights of individuals potentially charged under the code. 
It was also important, she added, to provide notice of the university’s conduct expectations and to have clear and understandable procedures.  These goals had to be balanced against the need to allow room for student affairs officials and police officers to exercise good judgment in any given set of circumstances.  Finally, she noted, the Committee attempted to balance the systemwide nature of the rules with the fact that each campus was different and the rules needed to be applied on a campus-by-campus, case-by-case basis.

Ms Radue described the Review Committee’s process, which included incorporating recommendations from earlier committees, holding two public listening sessions, providing public comment periods, meeting with constituent groups, and conducting legal research and research on disciplinary codes from other public universities and on model conduct rules.  The process involved compromise among the various viewpoints represented on the committee.  It also involved the consideration of diverse perspectives from the university community and university neighbors.  In the end, the committee looked at every section of both chapters and changed only what members believed there was reason to change.

Ms. Radue then reviewed the recommended revisions for Chapter 17.  Some changes were made in order to clarify, streamline and improve the format and scope of the chapter, resulting in better notice to students of the university’s conduct expectations.  One section was changed to make explicit that Chapter 17 can be applied to off-campus misconduct.  Other changes included new misconduct sanctions that are consistent with applying an educational philosophy to the disciplinary process (e.g., imposing educational sanctions, such as participating in community service, undergoing an alcohol-and-drug-abuse assessment, or attending a class).  Some changes were made to make the disciplinary hearing process less adversarial and more efficient, for example:  allowing e-mail communication with students in order to expedite the process; allowing students to choose between a hearing examiner and hearing committee for the most serious sanctions; and allowing students an advisor during the hearing.  In addition, changes were made in order to streamline the emergency suspension process while keeping the reasons for imposing an emergency suspension the same.

Ms. Radue explained in greater detail the off-campus misconduct part of the rule.  Under current practice, she said, Chapter 17 already applied to off-campus misconduct in some situations, such as in cases of an assault of another student or member of the campus community.  The revised language makes clear that Chapter 17 can apply to off-campus conduct if the conduct constitutes misconduct, as defined in the new section 17.09, and if the conduct also affects a substantial university interest, as described in section 17.08.  The Review Committee identified conditions for university conduct officers to consider in determining what constitutes a substantial university interest, including as conditions conduct that constitutes a serious criminal offense, conduct that presents a danger or threat to health or safety, and conduct that demonstrates a pattern of behavior that seriously impairs the university’s ability to fulfill its teaching, research, or public service missions.  The Review Committee drew on language from other universities in developing its proposed off-campus conduct rules. 

Ms. Radue next reviewed the proposed changes to Chapter 18, the most significant of which involved the reorganization of Section 18.06, which listed conduct prohibited on university lands.  Language was also modernized and clarified in places.  Parts of the revised Chapter 18 are modeled after other state laws and have been updated to reflect changes elsewhere in the statutes or administrative code.  She concluded her presentation by requesting approval to transmit the draft rules to the Legislative Council for its review and saying that she and her colleagues were available to answer questions.

Regent Davis invited the other members of the Review Committee to the table, as well as UW System General Counsel Pat Brady.  She also recognized Regent Opgenorth, who had joined the meeting in progress.  Regent Loftus began the discussion by asking a series of questions, which were answered by Ms. Radue.  She replied that athletes were not addressed in the revised rules in any special way, and that students living in campus residence halls could be impacted by the new off-campus misconduct rules depending on the circumstances.  In response to another question from Regent Loftus, UW-Madison Assistant Police Chief Burke clarified that police are not involved in Chapter 17, and that the conduct officer on campus assesses whether or not a student’s behavior constitutes misconduct.

Regent Opgenorth raised a question based on recent activity at his campus, UW-Platteville.  Faculty, staff and students at Platteville had recently passed a non-binding resolution to make the campus smoke-free.  It was subsequently discovered that such a resolution was not enforceable because of state statutes.  He wondered whether it would be possible to add a change to Chapter 18, which would permit Chancellors to designate their campuses smoke-free.  He requested that the Education Committee add enabling language to Chapter 18, along with language setting a fine for students who broke the non-smoking rules.  Other campuses, he suggested, would also support such a change.  He added that his purpose in proposing this additional change was to start a dialogue on the topic with Regents and others present. 

UW System General Counsel Pat Brady commented that campuses currently had no legal authority to impose forfeitures or fines on people, although the Board did as permitted by Administrative Code.  While there was a statewide prohibition of indoor smoking in state buildings, there was no general prohibition on smoking outdoors in state statutes.  The Regents could consider this, she added, but it would be somewhat unusual compared to the discussion normally conducted under the rule revision process.  She also cautioned that the non-smoking ban had not been vetted with constituents as had the other proposed rule changes.  She observed that the Board could certainly start a process for such a discussion and appropriate vetting but that it could slow down the rest of the rule-making process for Chapters 17 & 18, thus preventing promulgation of the revised rules by fall 2009.

Regent Spector commended Ms. Radue and the Review Committee for their work.  He asked whether the rule revision process would allow inclusion of Regent Opgenorth’s proposed smoking ban as an additional change to be made following the Legislative Council’s return of the rules to UW System.  Ms. Brady responded that most of the changes made by the Legislative Council would be technical and format-based in nature.  If the Regents wanted to add a substantive revision after the initial submission, the process would require another round of vetting with the Council. 

Regent Spector asked whether members of the Chapter 17 & 18 Review Committee would consider a change enabling Chancellors to declare their campuses smoke-free, adding that if such a change was not made then, it would be too late.  Ms. Radue responded that such a change did not seem to fit within the purview of Chapter 18, because Chapter 18 includes conduct prohibitions, rather than enabling language, but that Chapter 18 does already include other language related to smoking.  Ms. Brady added that such a rule change would require a statutory change since the Legislature is not permitted to regulate outdoor smoking at present.  Regent Spector observed that the K-12 sector had been able to do this.

Regent Opgenorth commented that he did not think there was a need for a System committee to look at the issue, which seemed to him a campus issue.  He expressed the need to value shared governance at the campus level and to recognize the campus’s ability to ensure the best environments for its own students.  Regent Cuene agreed that the smoking issue should be one of local control and expressed the wish that the Chancellors could have the ability to make their campuses smoke-free.

In response to a question from Regent Loftus, Mr. Burke provided an example of when a crime victim would choose not to go to the police but to a university official instead.  Regent Loftus then asked how a student could be disciplined on campus for a crime that has not been reported to the police.  Chancellor Santiago joined the table to respond to Regent Loftus.  He explained that UW-Milwaukee held their students to a higher standard and that their behavior reflected on the university.  He noted that 90% of UW-Milwaukee freshman were traditional-aged.  Because so many of them lived off-campus, it was difficult to say where the borders of the university ended.  UW-Milwaukee invested a great deal in its community and neighborhood to make it secure for all residents.  Chancellor Santiago spoke of the educational interests at stake in disciplining students who violate the expectations for university behavior, whether it occurs on or off campus, and the absolute need for the university to have the authority to discipline those students on campus.

In response to a question from Regent Loftus on whether such practices followed due process, Regent Spector and General Counsel Brady assured him that there were plenty of legal precedents and case law on the topic of campus discipline for off-campus behavior. 

In response to a question from Regent Davis, Chancellor Santiago described the extent to which crime had gone down around the Milwaukee campus and the significant resources dedicated by UW-Milwaukee to that effort.  He cited a recent street party attended by thousands of students.  Although the campus worked extensively with both student governance and police to keep the party under control, he would have liked to have been able to use Chapter 18 as a tool in such instances, as a means of ensuring civil behavior and reinforcing the campus’s educational mission.

Citing its importance, Regent Crain returned to the issue raised by Regent Opgenorth on the smoking ban and asked that the Committee find a way to address it.  She also commended the work of the Chapters 17 & 18 Review Committee and asked those members present to comment on what their greatest challenges had been in revising the rules.  Those instances, she observed, could help the Regents decide how best to act on the proposed revisions. 

Ms. Radue responded that the off-campus regulations under discussion had been opposed by one of the two students on the Committee, who felt that most off-campus behaviors should not be regulated.  Mr. Burke observed that there was not so much controversy among Committee members, per se, but that there was a lot of “word-smithing.”  Review Committee members emphasized their effort to make sure that the people implementing the process—i.e., the decision-makers—would have the tools and the flexibility to make the rules meaningful and workable on their campuses.  They acknowledged the difficulty, understood well by the Regents, of making systemwide policy that was applicable to every campus but also allowed campuses the flexibility to do what was needed for their particular environment.  The Review Committee’s core principles mattered a great deal to members and they attended to them throughout.

Regent Loftus raised a question about Section 17.08(2)(a) on misconduct outside of university lands and whether there would be an open record after the disciplinary process was followed.  Anne Bilder and Pat Brady from the Office of the General Counsel, responded that an open record would be unlikely given student privacy laws as determined by FERPA (the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act).

Regent Spector raised for discussion purposes a series of questions about specific proposed revisions to Chapter 17.  He mentioned that in Section 17.14, giving discretionary appeal to the Board of Regents, he had originally questioned whether the Board should be the deciding body but had concluded that as long as the process was discretionary, it would be okay.  He asked whether the Board should have the discretion to determine expulsion or suspension, and whether it was a good use of the Board’s time to be involved in hearing about a student suspended from a major or program.  Regarding the provision about reapplying and re-admittance after expulsion, he wondered whether a campus-by-campus decision on reinstatement was the right way to approach this given the serious misconduct represented by a suspension.

Returning to the context of UW-Milwaukee, Regent Spector asked whether consideration should be given to encouraging local police departments—e.g., Milwaukee or Shorewood—to give campus police the jurisdiction to cite students for certain behaviors detrimental to neighbors but not of serious import to off-campus police.  Assistant Police Chief Burke replied that that very question had been posed to police chiefs throughout the UW System.  The police chiefs responded that they would like to have this jurisdiction but that the decision to offer it is a county-by-county decision made by sheriffs.  Regent Spector expressed his hope that local police departments could be encouraged to give jurisdiction over to campus police in some cases but did not see the necessity for a rule change to that effect. 

Chancellor Santiago reminded the Regents that academic institutions viewed the handling of misconduct as a part of their educational process and mission, and that student understanding of misconduct as a potential learning opportunity was critical.  The campus’s goal was to engage students in a process of rehabilitation and a more flexible process for doing so was necessary.  UW-Madison Provost Pat Farrell concurred, adding that the needed flexibility also had to be supported by System.  UW-Oshkosh Chancellor Rick Wells added that collaboration among city police, campus police and the local sheriff’s office was also necessary.  He informed the Regents that UW-Oshkosh provided $75,000 annually to the city for enhanced protection of the campus, a fact that was sometimes forgotten by people in the community. 

Regent Spector then asked for comments from other Education Committee members on the breadth of the discretionary appeal role of the Board as described in Section 17.14, in particular the requirement that Regents would hear appeals of students restricted from enrollment in courses or programs as prescribed by Section 17.10(1)(h).  Regent Cuene said that such a role could become quite cumbersome.  Regent Davis observed that she would rather not spend her time as a Regent in that role given the other policy issues Regents could be addressing.

Regent Spector made a motion to amend the resolution authorizing transmission of the proposed rule revisions to remove an appeal of enrollment restrictions on courses and programs from the Regents’ discretionary review.  Regent Davis asked for a motion on the main resolution, Resolution I.1.b.Revised, before the amendment was discussed.  Regent Crain moved and Regent Spector seconded Resolution I.1.b. Revised.  Regent Spector then moved, and Regent Cuene seconded the amendment to I.1.b. Revised.

Regent Loftus asked how it would hurt the student to have to come before the Board in appeal of enrollment restrictions on a course or program.  Regent Spector responded that he felt Regent intervention at the program level—as described in 17.10(1)(h)—was inappropriate.  In response to a question from Regent Thomas, Regent Spector clarified that the amendment being proposed was for the removal of sub-section (h) from the list of sanctions in section 17.14; this change would have the effect of allowing discretionary appeals to the Board only for suspensions and expulsions from an institution.

The Education Committee voted unanimously to approve the amendment to Resolution I.1.b. Revised, deleting s. UWS 17.10(1)(h) from the list of sanctions in s. UWS 17.14 for which the Board could grant a discretionary appeal if a student's appeal to the chancellor had been unsuccessful. 

Regent Davis reminded Committee members that the main resolution, as amended, was still on the floor and called the vote.

Prior to voting, Regent Loftus asked for additional clarification on disciplinary consequences to student misconduct abroad.  Mr. Burke affirmed that the term “off-campus” in the rule could mean anywhere in the United States or the world.

Regent Davis asked Regent Opgenorth if he wanted to pursue further his interest in developing enabling language in the proposed rule revisions allowing Chancellors to enact campus smoking bans.  Regent Opgenorth in turn asked Pat Brady how long it would take to enact a non-smoking ban if the Committee did not actively pursue it in the rule revisions under consideration, adding that he wanted to be responsive to the students at his campus and others who were anxious to move the smoking issue forward.  Ms. Brady answered that there was no reason the topic could not be referred back to the Chapters UWS 17 & 18 Review Committee, and that a sub-committee could undertake discussion and revisions within the next few weeks.  She clarified that under current law, Chancellors can already discourage outdoor smoking and declare their campuses smoke-free.  What is missing from the state statute’s non-smoking policies is the Chancellor’s ability to impose fines on those who smoke in outdoor campus spaces.

Regent Thomas asked for options for creating new rules for enforcing forfeitures in campus non-smoking policies.  General Counsel Brady responded that it might be best to bring the smoking ban to the Legislative Council separately from the rule revisions under consideration.  Calling the administrative rule-making process “clunky,” she described the process that would be required, including bringing the new rule before the Board again prior to its submission to the Legislative Council.  While the new rule or amendment could be developed by some sub-group of the Chapters UWS 17 & 18 Review Committee, and then be integrated into the rest of the rule revisions, the entire process would be slowed down.  She advised Education Committee members to deal with the non-smoking piece separately so as not to hold up the primary task at hand.  Regent Spector concurred and added that the Regents should take the time to hear separately from Chancellors and others on how best to proceed on the non-smoking issue.  Regent Crain asked that UW System staff bring the topic back to the Regents in the future.

Regent Thomas then brought to the Committee’s attention a series of questions and concerns raised by students from whom she had been hearing.  To what extent, she asked, would the feedback received from the Legislative Council in the spring be something that the Review Committee or the Regents could address, or would their feedback be more procedural?  Pat Brady responded that once public feedback and input from the Legislative Council are received, some revising can be done.  In response to Regent Thomas’s next question, Ms. Brady replied that after public hearing, the rule revisions go to each house of the Legislature for discussion.  She elaborated that the Legislative Council’s review of the rules is very technical resulting in a detailed and lengthy report with attention paid to the germaneness of the revisions to original intentions.

Regent Thomas next expressed concerns by students about which controlled substances were being referred to specifically in the rules.  Assistant Police Chief Burke responded that while every situation is different, illegal activity is illegal.  He emphasized that the Review Committee used the word “may” very deliberately in several places to describe when the university should get involved.  The “substantial university interest” could vary situationally.  Regent Thomas followed up to ask what the source was of “substantial university interest.”  Ms. Radue answered that the Review Committee borrowed from other universities in determining its wording, which sought to make clear that all of the regulated behaviors and misconduct require case-by-case consideration.  The Review Committee focused on providing parameters for considering when Chapter 17 should apply, as well as what it regarded as necessary flexibility.

Mr. Burke agreed, observing that Committee members really hoped that prior to the revised rules being finalized, each institution would take the time to prepare guidelines and set standards appropriate to their campus identity and culture.  The Review Committee did not want to bind campuses but, rather, allow for flexibility and judicious decisions, given that the issues of most interest to Milwaukee are not necessarily of interest to Superior.  Mr. Burke further elaborated, in response to another question from Regent Thomas, that he expected Chapters 17 & 18 to be a living document.  He would encourage campus conduct officers to review the document, put their own guidelines in writing, and share them with students.  The Review Committee’s intent was to be open, not to catch or sneak up on students.  Member Jan Sheppard added that the Review Committee included revisions concerning the “substantial university interest” in the effort to clarify the impact on community members:  sometimes there is impact by students on the community that involves university interests, sometimes there is not.

Regent Thomas’s final question arose from student concern that, because the document is deliberately vague in places, the set of administrators currently in place at their campuses might understand the document one way, but that in future years, other administrators would understand it differently.  She asked how Review Committee members would address this.  Mr. Burke responded that this is what Chancellors and Regents are for:  if student affairs officers are out of sync with their university’s mission, then Chancellors can and should intervene.  If Chancellors choose not to intervene, then the Regents can.

Regent Loftus countered that Mr. Burke’s explanation was precisely the reason he would vote in opposition to Resolution I.1.b. Revised as Amended.  He said he could only imagine what would have happened with the on- and off-campus protests during the Vietnam War.  There were not enlightened police officers at that time and campuses served as sanctuaries for acts of civil disobedience by students.  According to the rule revisions under discussion, he continued, these acts could easily have been judged as student misconduct, against substantial university interest, and subject to disciplinary action.  He therefore could not support them.

Regent Davis called for the vote.

I.1.b. Revised:  It was moved by Regent Crain, seconded by Regent Spector, that, upon the recommendation of the President of the University of Wisconsin System, the Secretary of the Board of Regents and staff transmit the attached draft rules amending Chapters UWS 17 and 18, Wisconsin Administrative Code, to the Legislative Council for review, pursuant to ch. 227, Wisconsin Statutes.

The resolution PASSED as amended, with Regents Davis, Crain, Cuene, Spector and Thomas voting in the affirmative.  Regent Loftus voted no.

Regent Davis expressed her appreciation to Ms. Radue and the other members of the Review Committee for their diligence and sensitivity in attending to the revisions to Chapters 17 & 18 while seeking to balance the needs and rights of students, with the need to ensure the safety of and adherence to educational missions and environments.

1. Growth Agenda Action Steps:  Update on the UW-Madison Connections Program

Regent Davis welcomed Annette McDaniel, Assistant Dean in the UW-Madison Office of Continuing Studies, and Michael Butalla, a student at UW-Marathon County to present the UW-Madison Connections Program. 

Ms. McDaniel described the Connections program, a dual-admission program between UW-Madison and specific partner institutions.  The program was developed to alleviate enrollment pressures at UW-Madison, and to admit more of the academically strong students who want to attend Madison but cannot be admitted as freshman because of space limitations.  Selected UW-Madison freshman applicants, who are Wisconsin residents, are offered participation in the Connections program as an alternative to freshman enrollment at UW-Madison.  Ms. McDaniel emphasized that these applicants are academically qualified for admission to UW-Madison but are not admitted directly because of space limitations in the freshman class.  Unlike traditional transfer students, Connections students have certain rights and responsibilities, which include a UW-Madison student ID offering access to campus libraries, student support services, cultural and social events, recreational facilities, and the opportunity to purchase student tickets to athletic events.  Ms. McDaniel added that she works very closely with each student in the program, both at their original campus and at Madison upon transfer.

Ms. McDaniel continued that the program was first piloted in 2001, in partnership with four UW Colleges campuses.  Over the last few years, it had been expanded to include all 13 UW Colleges, 3 Wisconsin Technical Colleges, and the College of Menominee Nation.  The Growth Agenda set the goal to expand the program further to include any of the UW comprehensives that wanted to participate.  The Connections program, she reported, addresses three of the Growth Agenda goals:  to grow baccalaureate degrees; to retain students in Wisconsin so that they do not go out of state for college; and to increase the UW System’s efficiency, by taking advantage of the capacity that Madison has at the junior and senior levels, but is missing at the freshman and sophomore levels.  The program was expanded for 2008 to include UW-Green Bay; four additional comprehensives will join by 2009.

Ms. McDaniel described how many talented students used to turn down the Connections program because they had aspirations of attending four-year institutions that offered residential experiences.  Now that the comprehensives are included in the program, students can have a residential experience elsewhere for a year or two and then enroll at UW-Madison.  She then introduced Michael Butalla, a UW-Marathon County student who was admitted directly to Madison but chose to start at the UW Colleges and then transfer through the Connections program.

Mr. Butalla addressed the Committee, commenting on the appealing alternative that the Connections program offered to students like him.  He had originally been happy to get into UW-Madison but then became nervous about its size and tuition.  He received a scholarship offer from UW-Marathon County and then learned about the Connections program.  He decided that the program fit his needs, in terms of money and the appeal of small classes at Marathon County.  He also appreciated the program’s flexibility and the security of guaranteed transfer.   Overall, he felt he was receiving a great education through the Connections program.

In response to a question from Senior Vice President Martin, Ms. McDaniel replied that about 25 students from UW-Green Bay, the program’s newest partner, had chosen the Connections program.  An additional five comprehensives would be on the list of Connections institutions for 2009.  In response to a question from Regent Crain, Ms. McDaniel explained how students were selected for the program.  Regent Thomas added her compliments to the program, observing that it offered great leadership development for students at smaller schools who then moved on to larger ones, bringing their leadership with them.

To the applause of Committee members, Senior Vice President Martin announced that this action step of the Growth Agenda was now completed and success could be declared.  Regent Davis thanked Ms. McDaniel and Mr. Butalla, and also recognized Marv Van Kekerix, Associate Vice Chancellor and Dean of the UW-Madison Continuing Studies Program.

4. Report of the Senior Vice President

Senior Vice President Martin began her report by introducing Dr. Stephen Kolison, newly hired by UW System as the Associate Vice President for Faculty and Academic Programs.  Dr. Kolison succeeded the retiring Ron Singer.  Dr. Kolison came to the UW System from Tennessee State University, bringing with him more than 17 years of experience as an administrator and faculty member in higher education.

Senior Vice President Martin also introduced four new Provosts to the Education Committee:  Christine Clements, Interim Provost at UW-Whitewater; Al Hartman, Interim Provost at UW-Oshkosh; Christine Quinn, Provost at UW-Extension; and Marty Wood, Interim Provost at UW-Eau Claire.

a. Update on Higher Education Needs in Waukesha County

Senior Vice President Martin next provided the Committee with an update on Waukesha County’s Educational Needs.  She reminded Committee members of the report they had received in June from the Waukesha County Higher Education Coalition, a coalition formed to bring together the business, county and public higher education partners in the region.  The coalition, she noted, included the Waukesha County Action Network or WCAN, which had been pressing for several years now to increase baccalaureate and graduate degree offerings, and to enhance workforce development in Waukesha County.  The report outlined the ways in which Coalition members have worked together and issued a set of recommendations.  Dr. Martin informed the Committee that in early July, President Reilly, Chancellor Wilson and Associate Vice President Ron Singer had met with WCAN Board Chair Margaret Farrow, and Coalition members Jose Delgado, and Bronson Haase.  Several next steps were agreed upon, including that the UW System would pursue bringing the UW-Platteville engineering program to UW-Waukesha.  WCAN also planned to bring CEOs of engineering firms to the table to discuss local resources, needs and commitments.

b. Update and Timeline on Plan 2008 and Inclusive Excellence

Senior Vice President Martin then presented the Committee with an update on Plan 2008 and a timeline for Inclusive Excellence, the framework that would guide the UW System’s future diversity work.  She reported that the final Plan 2008 Reports were due from UW Institutions in November and that the Board would hear the System’s final report at its one-day policy meeting in March 2009.

The UW System’s Equity Scorecard project, she continued, was producing extraordinary work and data.  The first cohort of 5 campuses was engaging in follow-up work; the second cohort of 5 campuses was getting started on its data collection.  The project was generating lots of excitement about the ways in which the data could help institutions move forward with progress for underserved students.  She also described the first round of grants made through a new Office of Academic Affairs grant program called “Closing the Achievement Gap.”  The
goal of the grant program was to develop and support programs effective in promoting institutional change to foster access and excellence for historically under-represented populations.  A total of $300,000 was made available to UW institutions for academic year 2008-09, and the program proved very popular:  eleven UW institutions applied and the funding requests totaled $974,040.  In the end, seven grants were awarded.  Senior Vice President Martin shared a list of the funded projects with the Committee. 

She then described Inclusive Excellence, the emerging framework for the UW System’s future work on diversity and equity, which would comprise strategies to integrate into the heart of the UW System’s educational enterprise and a more inclusive definition of diversity.  The Board would hear more about this in March 2009.  In reviewing the timeline for introducing Inclusive Excellence to the institutions, Regent Davis said that she would like to see opportunities for student input and involvement clearly indicated on the document.  Senior Vice President responded that this could be done and that she had already had conversations with student leaders on the topic.

Finally, Senior Vice President Martin previewed the UW System Climate Study presentation the Board would hear in December. The purpose of the study was for UW System institutions to learn how constituent groups currently felt about their particular campus climate, and how the community responded to them. The Study covered a range of issues, including governance, pedagogy, curriculum, professional development, inter-group/intra-group relations, and respect.  Five UW campuses were participating: UW-La Crosse, UW-Milwaukee, UW-Oshkosh, UW-Stevens Point, and UW Colleges/UW-Extension.  Campus forums were being held in October and November to share the survey results at participating institutions.  Senior Vice President Martin acknowledged that the results were sensitive and sometimes difficult to hear, and while there were no surprises, some public reaction could be expected.

Senior Vice President Martin concluded her report by introducing Walter Zahaki, Associate Dean from the College of Letters and Science at New Mexico State, who was serving as an ACE Fellow at UW System Administration this fall.  Sponsored by the American Council on Education, the ACE Fellows program is a higher education leadership development program that enables participants to immerse themselves in the culture, policies, and decision-making processes of another institution. 

5. Committee Consent Agenda

Regent Davis moved adoption of the minutes of the August 21, 2008, meeting of the Education Committee and Resolution I.1.e.(2), approving the re-appointments of Phillip Farrell, David Kindig and Greg Nycz to the UW School of Medicine and Public Health Oversight and Advisory Committee of the Wisconsin Partnership Program as the Committee consent agenda.   The motion was seconded by Regent Cuene and carried on a unanimous voice vote.

It was agreed that Resolution I.1.b. Revised, authorizing transmission of the amended draft rules for UWS Chapters 17 & 18 of Wisconsin Administrative Code to the Legislative Council, would be brought separately before the full Board of Regents at its Friday, October 3, meeting.


The meeting adjourned at 4:15 p.m.