Student Academic and Financial Affairs Committee


January 29, 2015


Student Academic & Financial Affairs Committee

Conte, Tom



Mulford, Charles



Nobles, Greg


Honors Program

Perez, Ruperto M.  #


Pikowsky, Reta †


Polluck, Anne



Tovey, Craig *



Abrams, Jennifer


U Student

Shin, Brian


U Student

Rizvi, Hira


G Student

Carrie Shepler#

Faculty Executive Board Liaison




*Committee Chair for 2014-2015

**Vice Chair

† Secretary

#Without Vote

U = Undergraduate

G = Graduate

[xx-yy] service period


9 Voting members/5 required for a quorum.


There was no quorum for this meeting.


Attending: Craig Tovey, Reta Pikowsky, Anne Pollock, Carrie Shepler, Brian Shin


1.       The first item on the agenda was the draft information prepared by the Registrar to be placed under the Student Tab on the Registrar’s Office website so that students will know how to request an Institute Excused Absence and will know what kinds of information to provide. It was suggested that, on the document, we add “times” to the dates of the events and that we edit the section that deals with deadlines to submit request.  A revised document will be circulated to the Committee in the next day or so.

2.      There was also discussion about the on-going issue of how our excused absence policy looks at the maximum number of days that can be missed in any term.  The operating procedure in the past has been to view 10 days as the maximum.  However, recent discussions with GTAA coaches and reviews of individual student


requests leads us to believe that the information needed to make an informed decision needs to be more inclusive. 


No single factor would necessarily result in a denial of a request, but any of these factors could result in more scrutiny by the Committee.       Data points needed to evaluate a request:

o   Number of days missed?

o   What the combination is of days missed (Monday, Tuesday, etc.)?

o   How many class hours are missed?

o   What fraction of the total meeting hours in a given term is being missed (not needed for all the classes registered, just provide the one that has the largest fraction being missed; if the percentage of hours missed is 20-25% or more, the Committee will almost certainly view the request more critically)


What adds to the difficulty in this discussion is that different kinds of classes (seminars, labs, lectures, etc.) are affected differently by absences.  The kinds of impacts are different and at different levels.


3.      Related to approved absences the other point of discussion was how to handle students who are in more than one sport or who are in more than one activity. This may be hard to keep track of since the two activities would be reviewed separately. More than one period of missed classes could create some serious issues.

4.      It was noted that the guidelines will also have to be edited to remain consistent with the proposed language in the information to go under the student tab on the website.

5.      The Registrar noted that she would start a spreadsheet of the individual requests for historical and comparative purposes. Committee members felt it would be good to include in the annual report, in the future, more detail on all the requests that the Committee handled in that year, with comparisons to past years.

6.      The Spring meeting schedule has been a challenge. Tuesday at 11:00 is now the planned meeting time.  The actual schedule will be announced soon.






Dr. Craig Tovey, ISyE