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University Senate proposes changes at first meeting of the semester

On January 16, 2014

The University Senate held their first meeting of the spring semester on January 9, 2014.

The meeting addressed several pieces of unfinished business from the December meeting.

The first motion presented to the Senate was in reference to a revision to the faculty handbook, which would see the elimination of the first-year seminar representative, add voting privileges for library representatives and add a director of common curriculum.

The first motion was passed.

The next motion brought to the floor for vote addressed the Provost holding off considering any restructuring of colleges until the Senate has had "sufficient time" to consider the impact of the voluntary severance and/or current reductions on the colleges.

This motion was passed and will be readdressed when the Senate has had the sufficient time it requires to evaluate impact of current reductions on colleges.

The third motion the Senate addressed involved the desire to create an adequate, functional space either in Monroe Hall or a building near the front of Loyola's campus to house Print Services.

This motion sparked debate throughout the Senate, after which it was unanimously passed. Senate members agreed that they would support the search for an appropriate space.

With the next motion, the University Senate aimed to set the criteria for financial "exigency," a change from the current system, which only requires their approval.

Financial exigency refers to a state of financial emergency in which tenured faculty may be terminated among other implications.

The Senate passed the motion establishing their control of the criteria in the future.

The final motion presented to the Senate was initially one, but was amended during the meeting to be split into two individual motions.

The whole motion was a joint effort between the University Senate and the College of Law faculty. 

The first part of the motion involved university contributions to faculty and staff retirement accounts.

"The Univ. Sen. joins the College of Law faculty to urge the President and the Board of Trustees not to reduce University contributions to faculty and staff retirement accounts," as stated in the PowerPoint presented at the meeting.

The second part of the motion urged the Rev. Kevin Wildes, S.J., to cease across-the-board budget cuts.

"The Senate and College of Law faculty urge the President to cease across-the-board budget cuts because they undermine and ultimately are destructive of Loyola's essential academic mission," as stated in the aforementioned PowerPoint.

Both motions encouraged the same solution to identify a more appropriate area to make budget cuts.

"The Senate and College of Law faculty urge the President to work with the Provost, the other vice presidents, and the Senate's Ad-hoc Committee on the Administration Structure of the Institution to identify appropriate areas where budget expenses may be reduced, as has been already undertaken at the College of Law," said the PowerPoint.

Following the presentation of the motions the Senate voted on and implemented an executive session in order to discuss and vote on said motions.

Lauren Patton can be contacted at

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