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Liberal Arts Council Minutes 2013

16 January 2013, 2:00 pm, FH 230

Presiding: Dean Michael Hennessy
Recording: Associate Dean Lucy Harney
Guests: Jennifer Grant, Marc Turner, Nathan McDaniel 
Council Members: Vicki Brittain, Susan Day, Vince Luizzi, Beth Erhart, Bob Fischer, Dan Lochman, Bill Kelemen, Philip Suckling, Dennis Dunn, Mary Brennan, Associate Dean Britt Bousman, Associate Dean Nancy Grayson 
1.    Curriculum proposals:
Dr. Suckling reviewed Geography’s proposed course additions to the Physical Geography major and the Water Resources Policy Certificate. Council members unanimously approved the proposal.
Dr. Luizzi reviewed Philosophy’s proposed changes for the MAAPE. Council members unanimously approved the proposal.
Dr. Day reviewed Sociology’s proposed course additions to the minor in Studies in Popular Culture. Council members unanimously approved the proposal.
Dr. Kelemen reviewed Psychology’s proposed curriculum changes to the BA/BS in Psychology. Council members unanimously approved the proposal.
2.    Rising S.T.A.R. research travel grant program:
ASG President Nathan McDaniel briefed council members on the procedures for students to apply for matching funds for research-related travel from ASG’s Rising S.T.A.R. program. Chairs are encouraged to publicize the procedures and deadlines to their students and faculty. Where possible, students should request a faculty member to assist in the submission of the online application. (Application deadlines: January 25, February 25, March 25, and April 25) 
Information and application link:
3.   Student computing requests:
Council members heard proposals for student computing funding from Dr. Lochman (for film editing in English and the Writing Center), Dr. Suckling (for workstation replacement in Geography), and Dr. Kelemen (for computer replacement in the Psychology computer lab in Evans). Marc Turner, Liberal Arts representative on the Academic Computing Committee, responded to questions from Council members regarding the approval process and timeline for award decisions.
Each Council member completed a form to rank the computing requests according to their value to students and academic programs. Dean Hennessy will tally and report the rankings via email. Dr. Bousman will work with Dean Hennessy to submit the digital requests and hard copies with signatures.
4.   2013 Leadership Institute Annual Conference:
Dean Hennessy reminded Council members to nominate one student per academic department/center to attend this year’s Leadership Institute Annual Conference (February 15-16). Chairs and Dr. Dunn should identify and invite one student, verify that he/she can attend both days of the conference, and provide the student with the registration link:  
      Students should be reminded to register as representatives of Liberal Arts.
5.  Liberal Arts Awards Day: Outstanding senior speech:
Dr. Grayson and Council members discussed the advantages and disadvantages of having the student selected as outstanding senior in Liberal Arts deliver a speech at the annual Liberal Arts Awards Day ceremony. Council members decided to discontinue the practice for this year’s event. They will revisit the question for 2014. Members discussed other ways to improve the ceremony, including ushering students more quickly to the stage to receive recognition, and better integrating the musical performance.
6.   Chair/associate dean evaluations:
Dean Hennessy asked chairs for recommendations for improving the annual chair evaluations. He noted that associate deans may be evaluated using the same procedure in the future.
7.  LA Study Abroad Council recommendations:
Dr. Harney informed chairs/directors of the recommendation of the Liberal Arts Study Abroad Council that departments consider supporting a scholarship for students participating in study abroad. Such scholarships could come from student groups (clubs, honor societies), from flexible endowments, or from new donations, perhaps contributed by study abroad alumni.
Dr. Harney reminded Council members of the many international exchange agreements available to our students in universities around the world. Texas State students receive full financial assistance for participation in these programs:
8.  Other business:
Dean Hennessy distributed the updated “Liberal Arts Snapshot” for 2011-2012, which highlights Liberal Arts academic programs and accomplishments of our faculty and students.
College grant specialist Stephanie Torralva-Bernsen (Sonnier) will be on leave for several more weeks. Budget specialist Jamie Donaldson can help to some degree with grant assistance in her absence. However, during this time chairs and faculty are asked to manage grant accounting, where possible, with the support of departmental administrative assistants. Dr. Bousman can also consult with grant account managers where necessary.
Around the table:
Council members discussed the regulations regarding accounts for student organizations. Faculty members are not to hold signature authority for these groups.
Lucy Harney reminded Council members to complete all uploads to the Curriculum TRACS site as soon as possible, so that the College Curriculum Committee can begin its review.
Dean Hennessy outlined the plans for this year’s fund-raising family campaign. More details forthcoming.
The meeting was adjourned.