SSE Executive Committee Meeting

July 14, 2008

8:00 AM – 10:00 AM


Present: Altiero, Chen, Engleman, Gaver, Blum (for Heins), Pratt (for John), Kalka, Mague (for
Koplitz), McGuire, McLachlan, Nelson, Parker, Ruscher, Tasker

Absent: Burdsal, McPherson

Guest: Ayoubi

Academic Advising

Amjad Ayoubi, who in addition to being the Executive Director of the Career Services Center is now also Associate Dean for Advising in Newcomb-Tulane College, met with the group to discuss advising services for undergraduate students. He reported that the number of advisors in Newcomb-Tulane College has been increased to 20 and each is being assigned a specialization, e.g. sciences, engineering, undecided. The office has also been re-organized with special emphasis on staff training and development, monitoring of program requirements and policies, web site, and communication with academic departments. A representative of the advising office will now serve as an ex officio member of the SSE Undergraduate Studies Committee. Amjad fielded a number of questions from the group concerning the need for advisors to be more aware of degree requirements and to maintain closer relations with faculty advisors in the academic units.


The ABET visit will take place on September 14 – 16. Nick Altiero agreed to distribute the Biomedical Engineering and Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering mission statements, program objectives, and program outcomes to the other departments so that they can be used as examples.

Nick asked that each program articulate its mission, program objectives, and program outcomes before the beginning of the fall semester so that attention can then be turned to the associated course learning outcomes. Department Chairs should be prepared to discuss these at their August meetings with Nick (see below). Note that, beginning with fall 2008, each course syllabus must include course learning outcomes and related program outcomes and that these syllabi must also be posted on the MyTulane BlackBoard system.

The departments have now identified staff members to be trained on the use of Digital Measures. They will immediately begin entering faculty CV information into the system. Beginning in January 2009, all faculty annual report information will also be entered into the Digital Measures system.

Space Planning

The University has employed an architectural firm to develop a comprehensive space plan for the School of Science and Engineering and to also develop plans for renovation of the Francis Taylor Laboratory building. The later study is to be completed by the end of summer and the comprehensive space plan will be completed by the end of the calendar year. All SSE departments and centers will be involved in this planning process as we seek to understand our current space utilization, optimize the use of our current space, and plan for the needed renovations and expansion that will be required to accommodate our strategic vision. There are three phases to be considered. The first phase will involve optimization of current space with the possibility of expansion into Thomas Hall, Fortier Hall, the Science and Engineering Laboratory buildings, the RiverSphere facility, and/or the J Bennett Johnston building. The third phase would involve the integrated biomedical science building(s) proposed for downtown. Since the timetable for the integrated biomedical science building(s) is unknown, there may be an intermediate phase in which temporary off-campus leased space would be required. An important element of the planning process will be to set metrics that will help to prioritize the assignment of research space.

Fundraising, 2009 – 2012

Kat Engleman briefed the group on the university framework for fundraising over the next 4 year period. This framework is entirely consistent with the fundraising plans of the School of Science and Engineering. She described the development booklet that is now being prepared and requested that Department Chairs and Center Directors assist her with white papers (for which she will provide a template) on important research and academic initiatives as well as photographs for publications and the web site. She is in the process of scheduling a photo shoot of School laboratories and facilities. It was suggested that this photo shoot should also include off-campus “field” sites.

There was discussion about the differences between alumni relations and fundraising activities and the importance of coordination between the two.

Hurricane Preparedness

Greg Southworth, the Director of the Office of Emergency Response, will attend the August 22 meeting of the Executive Committee to discuss hurricane preparedness. In the meantime, each unit in the School must see to it that its hurricane preparedness plan has been brought up to date and is accessible to all members of its faculty and staff. Nick recently distributed a list of units that have updated their plans and those that have not. It may be a simple matter of verifying current personnel and emergency contact information but it needs to be done as we are now one month into the 2008 hurricane season.


Nick reminded the Department Chairs to schedule an individual meeting with him sometime during the month of August. At that meeting each should be prepared to discuss the following:
  • Departmental Mission Statement
  • Program Objectives and Outcomes
  • Faculty Hiring Needs
  • Staff Hiring Needs
  • Faculty Load Policies and Individual Loads for AY09
  • Faculty Committee Assignments (Undergraduate Studies, Graduate Studies, Nominating, Grievance)
  • Faculty and Student Alumni Liaisons.

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