The meeting of the Academic Board was held at 1515 hours on November 18, 1997 in Bond Hall, Room 333.
AGENDA ITEM # 1: APPROVAL OF MINUTES
LTC Ozment indicated that COL Barrett, who was not able to be present, had submitted a correction to the minutes of the October 28th meeting. He asked that the summary of discussion about the barracks lockdown on October 27th reflect that both he and LTC Rembiesa contended that the search was conducted without probable cause. With this change, the minutes were approved.
AGENDA ITEM #2: SUMMER PAY
AGENDA ITEM # 3: PROCEDURES FOR REQUESTING TEACHING OVERLOADS/ REDUCTIONS
AGENDA ITEM # 4: DEPARTMENT HEAD STIPENDS/ TEACHING LOADS
AGENDA ITEM # 5: SUMMER SCHOOL AND MAYMESTER
MGEN Poole reminded department heads of the policy that students will be allowed to take only one three-hour course during Maymester.
COL Reilly told department heads that they should provide strong justification if they wish to offer summer school courses in a five-day rather than a four-day format.
AGENDA ITEM # 6: GRADE REPORTS
LTC Ozment asked about the need for broad distribution of grade reports in hard copy. Following some discussion, the Board determined that department heads and faculty advisors should continue to receive hard copies of midterm and final grade reports.
AGENDA ITEM # 7: CLASS SCHEDULES
LTC Ozment noted that many changes to the class schedule were submitted to the Registrar's Office after the schedule was printed. Several Board members stated that many times one department's schedule is affected by that of other departments. LTC Ozment will find out whether the Registrar's Office can distribute preliminary schedules to department heads in the future.
CPT Boykin asked whether any progress has been made in getting cadets to take core courses early in their careers. MGEN Poole reported that the Board has adopted a policy of requiring students to complete the majority of their core requirements before they are eligible to receive their rings. This year a minor exception was made to this policy, but the Board has made a commitment not to make exceptions in the future. MGEN Poole announced that he had made a motion to the Board's academic program committee that, because cadets place undue importance on receiving the ring, the ring ceremony be abolished.
AGENDA ITEM # 8: OFFICE HOURS FOR FACULTY ADVISING
MGEN Poole appealed to department heads to make sure advisors keep scheduled office hours during pre-registration. He also stated that faculty members should not be counseling students on selection of ROTC program. The ROTC departments can offer the best advice on this decision.
AGENDA ITEM # 9: GREATER ISSUES ADDRESS
MGEN Poole announced that the first Greater Issues address of the academic year will be given on December 2 at 11:00 a.m. by Ambassador West. Members of the color guard and members of Regimental Band will be dismissed from class at 10:00 a.m. All other students should be dismissed at 10:30 in order to be in the Field House by 11:00.
AGENDA ITEM # 10: FACULTY MORALE
Several concerns were raised in connection with low morale among faculty. These include the following:
a repressive academic environment, one in which faculty have difficulty obtaining approval from the Commandant's Office for field trips, etc;
the lack of faculty involvement with major issues;
continued verbal abuse of freshmen; faculty are not seeing the kinds of changes in the fourthclass system they had hoped and been expected to believe they would see;
lack of a formal link between faculty advisor and/or department head and a student who plans to withdraw; overwhelming load of committee work for full-time faculty.
In regard to the latter, MGEN Poole stated that he would accept much of the responsibility. He mentioned his desire that faculty be involved in college governance and have opportunities to provide the input that will help the administration make informed decisions.
COL Bebensee commented that from his perspective faculty morale has improved substantially over what it has been in recent years. The College has a new President, we are involved in fewer high-profile court battles, our public image is better, etc. Since several serious issues were raised, however, particularly in regard to the military lifestyle and its impact on academic programs, MGEN Poole agreed to schedule a meeting between MGEN Mace and the Academic Board. He asked that Academic Board members identify their concerns and forward them to Ms. Kaufman who will prepare a consolidated list of subjects to be discussed at the meeting.
COL Staley asked about possible increases in faculty salaries. MGEN Poole stated that no money is available but that he would consider any special cases. COL Folley asked whether there was a perception that the hiring of the permanent tactical officers has deprived faculty of merit pay. MGEN Poole stated that this was not the case, and other members of the Board affirmed that this is not a widely-held belief among the faculty.
AGENDA ITEM # 11: MISCELLANEOUS
MGEN Poole urged department heads to feed good news stories to the public relations office. He also announced that the College is developing a Speakers Bureau and asked that department heads supply a list of faculty willing to give public talks or offer expert opinions for media interviews.
The meeting adjourned at 1645 hours.
Dean of Undergraduate Studies and Dean of Women