Faculty Senate Minutes (11/29/2016)

Call to Order

  • Marshall Davis at 12:15 p.m. A quorum was present.


Marshall Davis, Marissa Duffy, Tim Sichler, Melisa Naylor, Willie Ofosu, Bob Faux, Tom Knapp, Jennie Knies, Ellen Gregorio, Wei-Fan Chen, Frouke de Quillettes, Rick Dierenfeldt, Gatinet Gawo, Violet Mager, Renee Rosier, Charles Davis, David Chin, Fred Stefon, Megan Mac Gregor, Esra Tekdal Yilmaz, Christyne Berzsenyi, Terry Clemente, Steve Putzel, Dimitrios Bolkas, Sue Hales


  • Please complete your Annual Compliance Training (Child Abuse and Clery Act)
  • Thank you to those that have participated in the Chancellor search. University Park officials stated that search participation was great. Please complete the feedback survey by the December 5th deadline. Steve Putzel reported that only one survey should be submitted for all three candidates.
  • Rick Dierenfeldt reported that Albert Lozano has granted permission to re-purpose Room 109 in the Science Building. At present, it is a vacant faculty office that has been become a makeshift storage room. By the beginning of the Spring 2017 semester, it will be ‘up and running’ as an undergraduate research office; complete with (3) workstations, monitors, and software for which the university/campus maintain licensing (i.e., SPSS, ArcGIS, Microsoft Office). This space is designated strictly for the use of undergraduates engaged in research collaborations with faculty—and will be open to students from ANY campus program involved in such endeavors. An internal grant will be used for the support of undergraduate research to fund the requisite equipment/software purchases. At present, a half dozen students are working on co-authored projects with Rick that will culminate with publication in peer reviewed literature. The projects range from hierarchical analysis of the influence of the Southern Subculture of Violence, structural characteristics, firearm availability, and offender/victim/location characteristics on the likelihood of firearm use during aggravated assaults to qualitative analysis of interviews with heroin users for the purpose of identifying commonalities in use/desistance and time-series analysis of the “Ferguson Effect” on the frequency of intra- and inter-racial violence.  Rick is hopeful that this center will serve as a springboard for inter-program research collaboration.  Rick will be submitting a grant application to the National Institute of Justice in the spring that will be co-authored with the RHS faculty. These are opportunities to set our campus and programs apart from other institutions; and, thus, serve as marketing/recruitment tools.  Moreover, they will provide our students with real outcome options in terms of the field and graduate school. 

Review and Approval of Minutes from October, 2016

  • Marshall Davis requested that the minutes be reviewed. A motion was made to approve the minutes from the October 19, 2016 meeting by Sal Marsico and seconded by Rick Dierenfeldt. Motion passed.

Chancellor’s Report: Dr. Charles Davis

  • Dr. Davis requested that faculty submit the Chancellor Search feedback Survey by the deadline.
  • Because of status changes for staff employees (exempt/non-exempt), attendance at campus events may be affected. Communication with employees should occur during normal business hours, and student clubs may require additional assistance.
  • The campus endowment for Entrepreneurship is currently at $60,000.

Director of Academic Affair’s Report: Dr. Albert Lozano

  • On-campus interviews for Assistant Professor of Surveying Engineering will take place on: Friday, December 9:  Dr. Dimitrios Bolkas; and, Tuesday, December 13:  Dr. John Mima. Teaching presentations for both candidates will take place in AC-110 from 11:30 to 12:30.  Research presentations will be held in the same room from 1:30 to 2:30.
  • For faculty teaching in one of the academic programs offered by our campus (Associate, Baccalaureate or Certificates), a reminder to submit the Assessment of Learning Outcomes form by the end of the year. Contact Albert to discuss any questions or concerns.As the end of the semester approaches, please submit the Academic Integrity Form in all cases of suspected breaches.  This form protects both students by giving them due process to make their case, and faculty by providing a record of actions. Contact Albert to discuss any concerns.

Committee Reports

Academic Affairs Committee

  • The committee encourages all faculty to allow student athletes the equal opportunity to earn all points available in a course, not just be given a chance to earn only additional points at the end of a course.
  • The committee will contact SGA to determine if they would like to send a representative to attend the next AAC meeting to discuss opportunities and challenges surrounding student advising and support. Once the committee completes this discussion, it will then focus on the third and final charge for this academic year, Guidelines for Faculty Being Promoted to Senior Instructor. Sal Marsico noted that, issues regarding Promotion to Senior Instructor belong to the Faculty Affairs Committee.

Faculty Affairs Committee

  • At the recent luncheon, faculty shared ideas for collaborating on projects. Please reach out to Dr. Christyne Berzsenyi with a status update on the project and identify if resources or introductions are needed. Some projects included: Cross Campus faculty art show, Mental Health Coping via Art, Campus Member Art Show, Global Human Rights Narratives of Violations, Migration Patterns, and App Development. Committee discussed the possibility of showcasing the faculty collaborations at the Celebration of Scholarship Poster Exhibit in April 2017.

Library Committee

  • In October, the Media Commons moved to the library. There are three Macs and peripherals available for use. Some of the peripherals were in need of upgrades, and the library is working with Carla Rapp to obtain the replacement equipment. The green screen in the Technology Center is gone, and it has been replaced with a portable green screen in the Library. If you would like to use the equipment, please make the reservation in the Library.
  • The Library is exploring the possibility of adding more study rooms. Rick Ricardo met with the library staff and is looking into the options. Other campuses have incorporated glass study rooms to their library and our library has enough space near the rear of the library.
  • Penn State Behrend currently loans video games to their students. Jeff Chiampi requested that our library explore the same possibility to support the new Game minor.

Scholarly Activities Committee

  • The Committee will invite the general public to the lectures, as it may boost attendance and contribute to the campus’ outreach efforts. The committee welcomes volunteers to give lectures next semester. Tim Sichler’s lecture on “Going Sailing” will be on December 5th at noon in T-101.
  • Faculty are encouraged to participate in more campus events, including the Celebration of Scholarship. Some potential ways participate include: faculty presentations of professional-quality posters at the Celebration of Scholarship; more varied topics and presentation styles at the Scholarly Lecture Series; and, casual discussion sessions with coffee and tea between faculty/staff on varied topics of interest.
  • 2016-17 grant funds: The Committee reviewed proposals submitted by faculty and agreed upon recommendations for fund distributions that will be sent to the DAA. 

Student Affairs: No Report

Invited Reports

Canvas Conversion

  • Susan Hales discussed the Angel to Canvas Conversion status, reporting that Canvas Conversion is an ongoing process, with an approaching deadline of Mid-Summer 2017.
  • Faculty can take advantage of a “White Glove” conversion that provides assistance in a 24-48 hour time frame. It is expected that the wait will increase as the Summer 2017 deadline approaches. Faculty received email notification regarding this service.
  • Sue will keep track of what has been and what needs to be converted.
  • Some technical problems on Canvas include: using Speedgrader, appropriate browsers, and submissions of student work.
  • Dr. Renee Rosier inquired about how students are informed about the SRTE location. Dr. Albert Lozano responded that students receive an e-mail about instructions to complete SRTEs. Sue Hales will investigate this matter, and send an email to clarify the location of the SRTEs.
  • Jennie Knies reported some problems with successfully embedding links on Canvas. Please contact the library if you are having this problem.

Other Business

  • University Faculty Senator, Wei-Fan Chen reported: No Report

Old Business


New Business 


Comments for the Good of the Order



  • A motion was made to adjourn by Sal Marsico and seconded by Rick Dierenfeldt. Motion passed. The meeting was adjourned at 1:15 pm.