SSE Executive Committee Meeting

April 24, 2009

8:00 AM – 10:00 AM


Present: Altiero, Burdsal, Chen, Engleman, Gaver, John, Koplitz, Nelson, Heins, Kalka, McGuire, Oertling, Parker, Ruscher, Tasker

Absent: Engleman, McLachlan, McPherson Guest: Keith 


Deanʼs Comments

  • A new staff member has joined the SSE deanʼs office. She is Program Coordinator Maura Ryan.
  • All spring semester course evaluation results will be delivered to the appropriate Blackboard folders by June 1.
  • SSE funding opportunities associated with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
  • Issues discussed at the April meeting of the Tulane Deansʼ Council.
    • Status of leadership searches.
    • Update on undergraduate and graduate admissions for fall 2009.
    • Hurricane Plans. Updated 2009 departmental plans were due to the Office of Emergency Preparedness on April 10!
    • New GIS facility to be located in Boggs.
    • SACS update and action items.
    • Posse studentsʼ visit to New Orleans
  • Important dates in May:
    • May 7 – Last SSE Faculty Meeting of AY09
    • May 15 – Graduate Hooding Ceremony/Reception; Undergraduate Awards Ceremonies
    • May 16 – Graduation Ceremony; Newcomb-Tulane College Diploma Ceremony
    • May 29 – Last Executive Committee Meeting of AY09

Graduate Studies Issues – Burdsal, Keith

Elizabeth Keith, Senior Program Coordinator for Academic Programs in the SSE, reported on the new Graduate Studies Management System software that is being adopted by the School. This package will allow us to track all graduate student information from initial enquiry to graduation. It will be fully implemented soon.

Elizabeth also went over plans for the May 15 graduate recognition and hooding ceremony that will involve the Schools of Continuing Studies, Liberal Arts, Medicine, and Science and Engineering. There was a general discussion about event logistics.

There was a discussion about the role of the departmental graduate program coordinators. It was agreed that having the same faculty member handle both graduate student recruiting and graduate program administration may not always be advisable as these are two very different functions. Thus departments will be free to appoint a different faculty member to each role rather than being required to appoint a single graduate coordinator to handle both.


Budget Issues

The group discussed time limits for the expenditure of start-up packages by new faculty members. It was agreed that junior faculty members must expend their start-up funds prior to the granting of tenure and that more senior faculty members hired with tenure must expend their start-up funds within the first four years. These restrictions are actually already in effect and are being included in offer letters to all new faculty hires. A question was raised about faculty members hired prior to the implementation of these restrictions who may still have un- expended start-up funds. Dean Altiero expressed the strong view that faculty members who have achieved tenure should no longer require “start-up” support.

The group also discussed discretionary funds that are available to faculty members holding endowed positions. It was agreed that there needs to be a limit on the amount of un-expended funds that can be carried forward from one fiscal year to the next. After some discussion, it was agreed that there would be no limit set for holders of Early Career Professorships but that holders of Professorships and Chairs will not be permitted to carry forward an amount greater than their annual discretionary fund allocation unless there is a compelling reason to do so.


SSE Board of Advisors Meeting Follow-up

Dean Altiero reported on the April 17 SSE Board of Advisors meeting. He highlighted the action items being addressed by each of the five Board committees: Planning and Operations, Alumni Relations, Development, Student Recruitment and Retention, and Research Enhancement. There was some discussion.


SSE Faculty Meeting Agenda Items

The last SSE faculty meeting of the academic year is scheduled for May 7. It was decided that the agenda would include certification of degrees, committee reports, committee elections, the proposed 2-4 program with the School of Medicine, the foreign language exemption for engineering majors, and the proposed amendments to the Grievance Committee section of the SSE Constitution. This is a full agenda and attendance is very important due to there being a number of action items requiring a quorum. Suggestions for additional agenda items must be submitted no later than April 30.

School of Science and Engineering, 201 Lindy Boggs Center, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5764