Meeting of June 21, 2011

Held in the Poole Board Room of the Wardlaw Building



Members Present:        Bafna (Architecture),  Bennett (Mgt), Black (Grad. Student), Bohlander (Secretary of the Faculty, GTRI), Bras (Provost), Creel (U’Grad. Student), D’Urbano (Vice-Chair, OSP), Gordon (Assessment), Jenkins (GTRI-ISD), Leggon (Public Policy), Lyon (Chemistry), Millard (GTRI-ICL), Tavares (EVPR’s Office), White (CoC), Wozniak (OTL)


Members Absent:        Bishop (GTRI-ELSYS), Bowman (Chair, INTA), Buck (ECE), Ingram (ECE), Marder (Chemistry), Neu (ME), Peterson (President), Weissburg (Biology), Williams (USGFC Rep., ECE)


Guests:                        Corso (Graduate Committee), Herazy (Provost’s Office), Paraska (Director, Program Review & Accreditation), Pikowsky (Registrar), Riley (Undergraduate Curriculum Committee Chair)


1.      Mr. Chris D’Urbano (Vice-Chair) opened the meeting at 3:05 P.M.

2.      The Chair directed the Board’s attention to the Minutes of the May 24, 2011 Executive Board meeting (Attachment #1).  These were approved unanimously.

3.   The Chair next called on Provost Bras to comment on matters of interest to the Georgia Tech community:

a)      Dr. Bras reported that the President approved the report of the Savannah campus task force, and implementation of the recommendations has begun.  Refer to the minutes of the May 24, 2011 for a description of the plan.  The President has informed the Chancellor that Georgia Tech is in a process of suspending operation of existing undergraduate programs on the Savannah campus.  It was anticipated that the cessation of undergraduate programs would be recognized by the Regents as completed in two years’ time.  Oversight of operations and new initiatives for Savannah have been assigned to Dr. Nelson Baker, Vice Provost, Distance Learning and Professional Education.

b)   Progress was being made in the implementation of Tech’s strategic plan.  Dr. Bras announced the members of a steering committee to oversee implementation; namely,

Sandi Bramblett, executive director, Institutional Research and Decision Support

Hugh Crawford, associate professor, Ivan Allen College

Steven French, professor, College of Architecture

David Frost, director, Georgia Tech- Savannah

Charles Isbell, associate dean, School of Interactive Computing

Norman Marsolan, director, Institute of Paper Science and Technology

David McDowell, Regents’ Professor, School of Mechanical Engineering

Pat McKenna, associate vice president, Legal Affairs and Risk Management

Julie Swann, associate professor, School of Industrial and Systems Engineering

Lisa Sills, principal research scientist, Georgia Tech Research Institute

John Stein, dean of students

Chet Warzynski, executive director of Organizational Development (ex-officio)

Michael Warden, vice president of Communications and Marketing (ex-officio)

The committee would be co-chaired by the three executive vice presidents (EVPs), Dr. Bras, Dr. Cross, and Mr. Swant, and would report to the President.

c)   Dr. Bras said the new Chancellor, Hank Huckaby, planned to be on campus on July 19 to meet with the President, cabinet, EVPs, deans, and students.  Dr. Bras also mentioned that the new chair of the Board of Regents was Benjamin Tarbutton, a Georgia Tech alum.

d)   The Georgia Tech Campaign reached the $1 billion mark in contributions and pledges, with $500 million to go.  There was recently a meeting of the steering committee for this campaign at which plans were made about how funds would be allocated.  Overall, key aims were to greatly increase need-based support to students and double the number of supported faculty chairs.  There would also be support for some facilities and equipment.

e)   Dr. Bras reported on the progress of several new building initiatives:

·         The Clough Undergraduate Learning Commons was planned to open officially for classes on August 20, 2011.  (The Starbucks, on August 8.) 

·         Renovation of the Skiles Walkway was nearing completion.

·         A new Carbon Neutral Laboratory (on North Ave.) should be completed by June 2012.

·         Fitten, Freeman, and Montag residence halls were planned for renovation this year.

·         The North Avenue sidewalk and adjacent area were being upgraded for improved appearance and safety and significant portions would be completed before the football season. 

·         Construction was underway on the building to replace the coliseum.

·         The new Tennis Center expansion should begin in Spring 2012.

·         Improvements would be made in the area known as Burger Bowl on the west side of campus.

·         A new Challenge Course pavilion would be completed in the year ahead.

·         The new football practice facility was almost complete.

4.   Mr. D’Urbano called on Ms. Susan Paraska, Director, Program Review and Accreditation, to provide an update on the Academic Program Review Plan for 2011-12 and beyond.  The plan was presented in Attachment #2.  Ms. Paraska reviewed the responsibilities of the schools, colleges, and curriculum committees to conduct periodic reviews of all academic programs as required by the Board of Regents about every five years.  These reviews by the curriculum committees resulted in recommendations to the schools of potential improvements that might be made to the academic programs.  Review reports were posted on a secure website to which the Board of Regents had access.  The plan for future reviews comprised a calendar (in the attachment) of which reviews would be conducted each year and the Executive Board had the responsibility to approve this calendar. Fifteen reviews were planned for the 2011-12 year.  Noting that this was a rather high number, Ms. Paraska explained that the College of Computing made a special request to have all their programs reviewed this year, the second year of their new dean’s tenure.  Dr. Bras asked what mechanism was in place to see if recommendations were acted on.  Not all recommendations had to be accepted, but they should all have received some attention.  Ms. Paraska answered that each program was expected to report at their next review on what they did with the input from the previous one.  Starting this year, there was also going to be a request for a progress report to be submitted two years after the review.  Colleges and schools also have had a follow up process of their own.  Schools and colleges were free to choose and report a different course of action from that recommended if in their judgment it would better serve the Institute.  Ms. Paraska pointed out that Georgia Tech’s academic program reviews were purposely aligned with required accreditation reviews wherever possible.  In response to a question, Ms. Paraska said there were about eight different groups who provided accreditation to the various Georgia Tech programs.  It was moved and seconded to approve the plan presented in the attachment.  The motion passed unanimously.

5.   Mr. D’Urbano then called on the curriculum committees to present curriculum action items and minutes for approval.  The Executive Board was doing this in accordance with the Georgia Tech statutes and was acting on behalf of the Academic Senate when decisions were needed between the regular meetings of that body.  An overview of matters needing a decision was provided in Attachment #3 and the minutes of the curriculum committees referenced could be found in Attachment #4

Dr. George Riley spoke on behalf of the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee and covered the Minutes from 4/26/11, 5/10/11, 6/7/11, and 6/14/11.  Action items from 6/14: ISyE – 1 new course; Pub. Pol. – clarify requirements concerning grades for the BS in Public Policy; ME – 2 new courses, 1 deactivation; AE – 1 course cross listing with ME; MSE – 1 new course; Psych. – modification in the BS in Psychology degree involving course requirements and research hours.  It was moved and seconded to approve these minutes and the action items outlined.  The motion passed unanimously.

Dr. Greg Corso spoke on behalf of the Graduate Curriculum Committee and covered the Minutes and action items from 6/2/11: CoA-City & Regional Planning – 2 new courses; ECE – 2 new courses; ME, ChBE, & ECE – new certificate in Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) + 4 new courses (ME 1, ChBE 2, ECE 1).  It was moved and seconded to approve these minutes and the action items outlined.  The motion passed unanimously.  Dr. Bras asked how long it took from the time a new degree program was designed until it was fully approved.  Dr. Corso answered about a year and a half.  Ms. Paraska stated that the review under Board of Regents procedures can take another 30-90 days depending on the level of the program and the timing of the application for approval.  So she suggested 18-24 months was the usual timeline for the review and approval of a new program.

6.   Mr. D’Urbano explained that the Executive Board needed to fill a vacancy on the Executive Board occasioned by the resignation of recently elected Mr. Reid MacTavish representing GTRI.  Mr. Raj Vuchatu was a candidate identified in accordance with the bylaws, and he had agreed to serve if appointed and fill out the remaining term from August 2011 to August 2014.   It was moved and seconded to approve this appointment.  The motion passed unanimously.

7.   Mr. D’Urbano asked for reports from committee liaisons:

·         Mr. Dave Millard reported that the Faculty Benefits Committee would be piloting online sick leave tracking in the academic departments.  There was continued discussion of the needs and possible plans for a second childcare facility.  The committee was thinking to add representation from a retired person to add to the recently appointed representatives from staff so that they would have a comprehensive portfolio of stakeholders providing input to the committee.

·         Dr. Bohlander reported that Statutes Committee was nearly complete in re-hosting the online Faculty Handbook in a system powered by Drupal software.  He expected the new site would become operational during the summer.

8.   Mr. D’Urbano asked for any additional business.  Dr. Bohlander announced that the scheduled July 19 meeting of the Executive Board was officially cancelled.  He explained that the July date was a place holder in case of an emergency need for a meeting and usually this meeting was cancelled.  The next meeting of the Executive Board would be on August 30, 2011 and would include everyone from the 2010-11 and 2011-12 Board. 

Hearing no further business Mr. D’Urbano adjourned the meeting at about 3:50 p.m.

Submitted by Ronald A Bohlander, Secretary

August 23, 2011


1)      Minutes of the May 24, 2011 meeting of the Executive Board

2    Academic Program Review Plan

3)   Overview of curriculum matters to be considered

4)   Minutes and action items from the curriculum committee