February 19, 2010
The Board of Trustees convened at 9:00 a.m. on Friday, February 19, 2010, in the Old Main Room of the Bone Student Center, Illinois State University, Normal, Illinois. Chairperson McCuskey called the meeting to order and Trustee Maitland called the role.
The following members were present.
Trustee Jay Bergman
Trustee Anne Davis
Trustee Robert Dobski
Trustee Betty Kinser
Trustee Joanne Maitland
Trustee Mike McCuskey
Trustee Geno Bagnuolo
A quorum was declared. Also present for the public session were:
President Al Bowman
Vice President and Provost Sheri Everts
Vice President for Student Affairs Steve Adams
Vice President for Finance & Planning Dan Layzell
Vice President for University Advancement Dianne Ashby
Chairperson McCuskey: I ask approval of today’s meeting Agenda. Trustee Davis so moved and was seconded by Trustee Maitland. Motion made, seconded and vote recorded as all members present voting aye.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Chairperson McCuskey: You should have received and reviewed the Minutes of October 23, 2009, Minutes of our retreat on November 5-6, 2009, as well as the Minutes of the January 4, 2010, meeting. Any discussion? Do I have a motion for approval of all of the above Minutes? Trustee Bagnuolo so moved and was seconded by Trustee Dobski. Motion made, seconded and vote recorded as all members present voting aye.
RELEASE OF EXECUTIVE SESSION MINUTES
In accordance with the provisions of the Open Meetings Act, the Illinois State University Board of Trustees is required to periodically review the Minutes of its Executive Sessions to determine the necessity of retaining the confidentiality of those minutes. The Board has received a recommendation from its legal counsel to release the following Minutes.
May 8, 2009 Release all
July 31, 2009 Release all
As Board Chairperson, I will entertain a motion at this time to release as public the above list of Minutes of the Executive Sessions held by the Board of Trustees of Illinois State University. Trustee Kinser so moved and was seconded by Trustee Bagnuolo. Motion made, seconded and vote recorded as all members present voting aye.
Good morning everyone, and thank you for coming today. I have seen many of you at the dinner at the President’s house Wednesday evening, the basketball game, yesterday’s Founders Day, ringing of the Bell inside and outside, the award ceremony and then last night at the Alumni Association dinner. You might say it has been non-stop, but exciting for the Board of Trustees because it does give us an opportunity not only to be on campus but see and talk to a lot of people.
I want to begin by thanking everyone who played a role in yesterday’s Founders Day activities and at the Alumni Center last night. They were excellent events. I am glad to see Illinois State University honor Tom Lamont who has done so much for three fields: education of law and public service, education to Illinois higher education, and military service to our country. Probably as distinguished a person that we have honored, and he was just tickled to death to be back here yesterday and has never lost the fact that he has been a Redbird for over 40 years.
I also want to thank the Campus Communication Committee and Dr. Phil Parette for the presentation on the Special Education Assistive Technology Center. While we have such a broad spectrum of education opportunities here, it does every once in a while warm my heart as a former teacher to be reminded of the outstanding teacher education school we still are and the SEAT Center is one of the University’s best examples of preparing tomorrow’s teachers to teach people with special needs, and I am proud to see that the Center is making such a contribution.
I am sure you will hear much more about the budget situation from President Bowman during his remarks, but on behalf of the Board of Trustees, I want to thank the President for his honest assessment of how the state budget affects Illinois State, and for his communication with the Board and the entire campus community. Nobody likes to hear discouraging news, but I am glad to know that everything is out in the open, and that we are doing better than most in coping with this continuing fiscal crisis.
I want to congratulate our local state Senator Bill Brady on his performance in the February 2nd primary election. Although we may not know the final outcome for awhile, Senator Brady and his team ran an excellent campaign in a very tightly contested race.
Our best wishes also go out to Representative Dan Brady who will continue to help ISU behind the scenes, and Illinois State alumnus Dan Rutherford, who has done so much on behalf of Illinois State University, will be on the state-wide ticket in November. It is rare that we have ISU on the state-wide ballet and ISU graduates holding constitutional office.
One of the duties of the Board Chairperson is to place into the record Board committee appointments for the year, and that is traditionally done at the February meeting. According to Board By-laws, the Chair and Secretary, who is Trustee Maitland, serve on the Executive Committee with at least one other member, and that member is Trustee Davis. Serving on the Merit Board is Trustee Maitland. Serving on the Audit Committee are Trustee Dobski, myself, and Trustee Davis as Chair. Our Foundation Board representative is Trustee Bergman and our Alumni Board representative is Trustee Kinser.
In addition, it is the duty of the chair to appoint a non-Board member as Treasurer to the Board. Historically at Illinois State, that person is the Vice President for Finance and Planning, so I have appointed Dan Layzell to fill that role.
I will now invite my fellow Trustees to comment on the University activities they have been involved with since last we gathered.
Trustee Bagnuolo – I am looking forward to my Trustee-In-Residence with the College of Education. From a student perspective I think it is worth mentioning that I know there is a lot of excitement in the coming weeks to see what is currently temporary just down the hall becoming permanent when the Einstein’s Brothers Bagels moves into its permanent place. I think a lot of us students are pretty excited for spring to start, and there is no better way for spring break to happen for us than to try to make it down to St. Louis and watch the men’s and women’s basketball teams during Arch Madness and then into March Madness – so we will see how that goes.
Trustee Davis – I really do appreciate and am glad that I have the opportunity to attend Founders Day, Convocation and then the Alumni Awards dinner. As usual it was awesome and really inspiring. As a Trustee it really does give me a sense of pride in the University when I hear our alumni talk about the education that they received at this University. They talked about how there being students here at the University lays the foundation for the success they have had. They also talked about how it shaped and molded their lives to make a difference in the lives of others. And as you listened to them you really did understand the difference that they were making and how they are giving back to the community – being able to serve the community. And when you hear things like that you can’t help but be very proud for the things that we are doing here – the administration, the faculty, the staff makes it happen and I just thank you for all the work that you do.
Trustee Bergman – recently I did my Trustee-In-Residence with the College of Education. I went back there again four or five years from when I did it the first time and was very surprised at how much we are doing. I did ask a question that I was a little disappointed in the answer to but I understand. When I went there a few years ago one of the questions I usually ask is of the hours that are taught in this college, how many are from tenured faculty and how many are not. In the College of Education, which should be perhaps our finest college because it is our heritage, under 50% of the hours are taught by tenured faculty. I am hoping that will increase as time goes on, but I do understand the financial constraints that we have. I was very pleasantly surprised by one thing – the day before I was there the Governor’s office released the first list, which was later amended, of members being appointed to the P-20 council and one of our faculty members from the College of Education was appointed. Now for those of you who may not know what that is, the legislature passed some legislation several years ago that in effect said you have P-12, which is governed by the State Board of Education; you have 13-20, which is governed by the Illinois Board of Higher Education – but there needs to be more cooperation because of the continual excuses that higher education says we can’t train the kids because they haven’t been properly prepared and the high schools say we can’t train the kids because the grade schools didn’t do it and everybody passes the buck. P-20 council was designated to deal with that but thus far they have only tried to get some grants from the federal government, but the point being that ISU has a faculty member on the P-20 council I think is very positive for us.
I also enjoyed yesterday immensely – I have known Tom Lamont for a long time – he was on the Board of Higher Education and was very helpful to me when I came on board.
Trustee Maitland – I want to echo the remarks that both Anne and Jay have said about yesterday. It was a long day but it was very exciting and delightful one. Having not known Tom Lamont I was fortunate to sit with him at lunch and to hear some of the things that he has experienced and all about the Pentagon – how it is designed and how big it is – it was just an exciting thing to hear him talk. I did have my Trustee-In-Residence with Athletics, which is always exciting and fun. I always am impressed with the study center – to see all of the activities that the athletes do and all the help they receive, but how they are so active out in the community. It just amazes me because I know the time they give in their sport along with their academics and so many, as we saw the other night, are top students – it’s very impressive and that comes from guidance. As I mentioned earlier I was elected Chair of the Merit Board and have attended two meetings in Urbana. Also one other thing that I wanted to mention was the Music for the Holiday performance – what a wonderful performance – it was a great treat for John and I. And also we had our Board Retreat since we last met and that is always an informational and rewarding time.
Trustee Kinser: My Trustee-In-Residence was with the College of Applied Science & Technology and thanks to that college I have a really nice computer bag – right now I need the computer to go in it. It was a great tour – the alternative energy program that is going on and the students are so talented in that area. Then I was very fortunate to see the drill team from ROTC and I am impressed with that group because it is all volunteer and what is even greater was that several members were from music and theatre because that experience gave them marching experience and it was really great to talk to the young people that were there because of their enthusiasm and commitment to that drill team. Chief Swan has been assisting and helping in that area and it is really encouraging to see that kind of performance. I am very pleased with what I see happening at the Mennonite College of Nursing. I was there on Wednesday of last week when Congressman Halverson was there to talk with the students. The nursing students were great and they have a 100% pass rate on their testing. I am looking forward to my Trustee-In-Residence with the College of Arts &Sciences. I just want to specifically thank Dean Major from the College of Fine Arts because I was really impressed yesterday with Randy Reid and the Founders Day Bell. I have known Randy since he was born and he is a very humble, kind young man that did a great job on that bell and he also made the pedestal that it sits on. So I am very proud of Randy and the faculty from music, theatre and art that were recognized yesterday.
Trustee Dobski – I wanted to comment on the program presented to us about assistive technology – this university I am told is on the cutting edge of that area of education and that is another feather in ISU’s cap, so it’s another claim to the faculty, staff and leadership of the University for taking those positions so a great job this morning. I wanted to comment about this Saturday night when we will be attending the “Streetcar Named Desire” play and it will be our first time for a play. My wife and I are a part of this community acting group, about 17 couples, so we are bringing 34 people with us and hopefully they will enjoy it and revisit. I also wanted to comment about last night’s alumni dinner. If any of you have not attended one of these alumni award dinners, I encourage you to go. The six individuals that were honored – they had their own story to tell and what they have accomplished, but what I took away was how they give back and affect people and what they are doing with their lives to change the lives of others. Like Anne said it’s not what they learned at ISU but what they are doing with their lives. Especially a couple of them that I know personally – Parker Lawless and Gene Jontry – still in the community giving back what they learned and what they got out of the University was awesome as far as what they have done for this community and how they have helped in other areas – not just in formal education but in their neighborhoods and their community. That is so important and again I encourage anyone who hasn’t attended one of those alumni dinners to do so.
Trustee McCuskey – I did a Trustee-In-Residence with the College of Business and any time you enter the business school it is like entering a different world because it is such a beautiful building. I have been in there a number of times for meetings and you really appreciate it as a jewel as far as a building. But I never really had a chance to experience the faculty and so Scott Johnson sort of made it Business 101. We really did a lot but the thing that I remember most was he assembled all these different people that I have met at different times and there is a diversity in the business school – people from different walks of life, different backgrounds, race, religion, country. So I asked them what brought you to ISU and what has kept you here? Listening to that story was kind of like listening last night to the alumni, all different versions but people really having a commitment to this University because they believe the University has a commitment to them and a mission. I left there tickled to death because my sister came here after I did to be a teacher, but she sent here two children here to be in business, one in accounting and one in finance and insurance. My nephew has a very good job with an insurance company in Raleigh, NC, and my niece is a comptroller in Newport Beach, CA for a large company. Both grew up in a town of 300 people – that I what ISU can do – what it has done for Tom Lamont from a town of 1,000, me from a town of 500. And then listening last night at the alumni dinner to Joseph Reynolds who is a kid from a town of 600 holding these great races in 21 cities and then he talked about going all over the world to travel just because he wanted to travel after graduating from ISU. And then we have our old stand bys like Gene Jontry and Parker Lawless who have these fantastic careers with the University and the community and are still giving back. Then Connie Fako Schumake comes to ISU to be a special education teacher – thinking outside of the box – where does she end up, she ends up teaching technology at IBM all over the country. And then Tom Irwin in a very short time he just captivated you with his voice and his story – being part of Steppenwolf with Lori Metcalf and John Malkovich – all ISU theatre grads – and he told a story about being on the stage in England – built in 1720 – where they were honoring him and others for a play and standing next to Vanessa Redgrave and thinking as he looked out into the seats of this historic theatre – it all came together that it was the education that he had received at ISU that prepared him to be on that stage at that moment. So for all of you who do the daily work here, the last two days really reminds me that it’s the work that each of you do to give the promise and the passion and ultimately it’s the education that prepares our people for success.
One of the best parts of the job is hearing from those alumni and how and ISU education has changed their lives and last night did not disappoint. I want to add my sincere appreciation to everyone who participated in yesterday’s Founders Day activities. I want to congratulate our newest Honorary Doctoral recipient Thomas Lamont. I also want to congratulate our two newest distinguished Professors, Victor Devinatz and John Pryor, as well as our new University Professor Dan Everett, who is serving as chair of our department of Languages, Literature and Culture. Dan, I would mention as an aside, his work has brought literally world-wide attention to ISU. A publication – The New Yorker – reviewed his work in 2007 and his most recent book has been translated into six different languages. His research in Brazil has called into question Chomsky’s assumptions about linguistic universals and we are very proud to have him as part of this faculty.
If you attended yesterday morning’s bell ringing ceremony, you saw the unveiling of the Replica Old Main Bell. I want to thank Iris and Carson Varner from our College of Business for providing the inspiration and the resources for our new Founders Day symbol and I want to thank Randy Reid from our School of Art for creating a wonderful addition to our bell collection.
Thank you also to Phil Parette and the folks from the SEAT Center for this morning’s Campus Communication Committee presentation. Phil has done a wonderful job in providing leadership for the Center, which is doing great things for the campus and community. A little known fact about Illinois State is that all 5,000 teacher education majors go through that center and receive instruction in assistive technology.
I want to add my congratulations to Senator Bill Brady and to wish him calm thoughts as things get sorted out. Senator Rutherford and Representative Brady had somewhat less stressful primary campaigns—I thank each of them and wish them well as they tackle the tough challenges facing the state of Illinois.
Early this month, I met with Board and shared governance leaders regarding the state budget situation, and I followed up with a letter to the entire campus community on February 9. Simply put, our challenge is a lack of predictable cash flow from the state. Including federal stimulus dollars, our state General Revenue budget for this fiscal year totaled about $85 million. As of today, we have received just $26 million of that appropriation. It is very likely that when the fiscal year ends on June 30, the state will still owe us millions of dollars, and those resources might not come to campus until late in the fall.
Given these uncertain circumstances, I believe it would be irresponsible to commit resources that may not materialize for some time—so I informed the campus community that I will not make funds available for well deserved merit-based pay increases this fiscal year.
I have been meeting with state and local legislative leaders to press the critical need for public higher education support. I suppose it is some comfort to know that we are not alone – many states are going through exactly the same challenges that Illinois is facing. I also joined with the other university presidents in a letter to the Governor and state leaders regarding the need to increase the flow of state resources that have been appropriated to each institution. We will certain carefully manage and prudently spend our funds, we remain committed to avoiding scenarios including furlough days, layoffs, salary cuts and faculty hiring freezes.
I can report and I have actually begun talking about this the last week or so – most of the other parts of our budget are in very good shape and actually in many ways doing better. The University did receive a portion of the funds that it was owed for the Monetary Award Program. We received the entire allocation for the fall and received $2.1 of $7 million that is due for the spring semester. We expect more MAP funding to come our way in the next two weeks. Also on the plus side is private fundraising. For fiscal year 2010 we have thus far raised $9 million, so we will most certainly exceed our goal of $11 million this year. Of that $9 million--$8 million is in cash gifts—compared to $5.1 million at this point last year—so congratulations to Dianne Ashby and her excellent fundraising staff.
Our spring semester began with several pieces of very positive news. Our spring 2010 enrollment is 19,619—our highest spring enrollment in seven years. In addition, our fall to spring freshman retention rate hit 95 percent. When you consider the financial climate and the uncertainty of the freshman year in general, it is clear that our faculty, staff members and students are doing a tremendous job when it comes to creating a healthy academic environment. Meanwhile, applications for the fall 2010 semester are coming in at a brisk pace, and have already topped 13,000.
Another piece of great news to begin the spring semester—Illinois State learned that for the sixth straight year, the University was ranked in the top 100 universities in the nation for quality and value by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine. As the tight economy forces tuition rates higher, it is important to receive external validation that Illinois State offers a high quality education at an affordable investment.
Illinois State has received $800,000 in federal funding for projects that help Illinois businesses expand into overseas markets, support an innovative drug treatment program for youth, and enhance teaching and research in the field of neuroscience.
Illinois State University’s Export Project is helping more Illinois-based businesses expand into overseas markets thanks to a $100,000 federal grant. The funding supports the Export Project’s work with the agriculture equipment and technology firms Dickey-John and Brandt Consolidated, and the paint manufacturer Rust-Oleum Corporation.
An Illinois State University faculty member’s work with an innovative and ambitious youth drug treatment program is benefitting from $200,000 in federal funding. Since June 2008, Ralph Weisheit, a distinguished professor in the Department of Criminal Justice Sciences, has served as a consultant and evaluator for a youth drug treatment program operated through the Franklin County Juvenile Detention Center in Southern Illinois.
And, a grant of $500,000 is helping Illinois State’s School of Biological Sciences to enhance teaching and research in the field of neuroscience. Illinois State faculty members are currently conducting research in the areas of Parkinson’s disease, stroke, pain, drug neurochemistry, neurological and behavioral patterns in addiction, and wireless integrated devices for brain monitoring and stimulation. Partnerships with the Central Illinois Neuroscience Foundation and BroMenn Regional Medical Center’s neurosurgical residency program play a vital role in advancing faculty research in the neurosciences.
I want to congratulate Dean Janet Krejci (Kre-she) and the faculty, staff and students of the Mennonite College of Nursing. Graduates of Mennonite achieved a 100 percent pass rate on the national nursing licensure examination on the first try in 2009, far exceeding the national and state averages. The 101 students surpassed the nationwide pass rate of 88 percent and the State of Illinois pass rate of 91 percent. The high percentage of Mennonite graduates who pass the licensure exam the first time is due in a large part to the College’s Success Plan. Under the leadership of faculty member Cathi Kaesberg, the Success Plan focuses on critical thinking, integration of theory with clinical practice and mastery in each course before progressing to the next.
Congratulations also go out to Chemistry Professor Greg Ferrence, who was selected as the 2009 Illinois Professor of the Year. The U.S. Professors of the Year program selects one undergraduate instructor in each state who excels in teaching and mentoring. The award program is sponsored by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education and The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. Gregory is one of those I think exemplars of faculty at ISU in that he teaches undergraduates, including freshmen, and has a very active externally funded research program.
Illinois State University has been recognized as a Center of Actuarial Excellence in the new system of accreditation implemented by the Society of Actuaries. Illinois State is the only Center of Actuarial Excellence in Illinois, in fact we are ranked as a top 20 program nationally.
And, for the second year in a row, Illinois State University has been named a Tree Campus USA College by the Arbor Day Foundation. Last year, Illinois State was honored as one of the inaugural 29 Tree Campus USA colleges, making it the only Illinois university to earn the award.
Some news on searches— Sohair F. Wastawy (So-Hair Wus-ta-we) has been appointed as the new dean of University Libraries effective June 1. She has served as the chief librarian at the Library of Alexandria in Egypt for the past six years. Prior to that, she was dean of Libraries at the Illinois Institute of Technology.
Meanwhile, the search for the next Vice President of University Advancement continues on schedule. We have an excellent pool of candidates for the position and we hope to bring our finalists to campus early this spring. The selection process for the associate vice president for Human Resources also proceeds on schedule.
In spite of the cold, inclement weather we have experienced the past two months, contractors are continuing to forge ahead on the construction of the new Student Fitness and Kinesiology and Recreation Building. Numerous interior and exterior construction activities are underway such as interior masonry walls, framing of ceilings and installation of the HVAC and sprinkler systems. A separate project to replace the roof on the existing McCormick Hall structure is currently underway.
The South Campus Power Plant building has been substantially completed. Two 1,000-ton chillers were delivered in November. Contractors continue to install mechanical and electrical equipment. The facility will provide chilled water for the College of Business Building, Fell Hall and the new Student Fitness and Kinesiology/Recreation Building. The Stevenson-Turner Infrastructure Enhancement project continues. Replacement of curtain walls, windows and store front entrances in Stevenson Hall has been completed. Rehabilitation of the 3rd floor restrooms has been completed and the 4th floor restrooms are nearing completion. Final work in Stevenson will include installation of air curtains at the entryways. Life-Safety Improvements have been completed in the south end of the 1st floor of Turner Hall and opened for classes in January. With the completion of the Life-Safety Improvements and the Infrastructure Enhancements, two of ISU’s most heavily used classroom and office buildings will have new and upgraded life-safety, mechanical and electrical, and plumbing systems as well as new energy-efficient windows. All work is expected to be completed and buildings in full use for fall 2010. Phase III of the renovation of Stroud Auditorium is underway. The bulk of this phase of the project involves replacement and upgrade of the mechanical air handling equipment, expansion of the electrical services throughout the auditorium, upgrade of the theatrical lighting capability and controls, and the installation of new seating. The objective of this project is to enhance the academic usability and ease of maintenance for Stroud Auditorium and is expected to be completed and opened for classes in January 2011.
The Watterson Commons Renovation is moving forward. In order to continue to provide dining services to students, this project is being completed in six phases. All six phases of this project are expected to be completed by December 2010. This project provides for the renovation of major electrical, plumbing and ventilation systems on both floors of the structure for all kitchen, serving, dining, and storage space. As part of the Residence Hall and Dining Long-Range Plan the project supports the operation plan as well as the food service style and menu offerings intended for Watterson Commons, while addressing more fully the impact of environmental, sustainability, worker safety, food preparation requirements, health and sanitation regulations through automated systems for handling, receiving and storage of food. The facility will be closed during the summer to allow contractors complete access.
Bids have been received and are under review for Watterson Towers Interior and Exterior Renovation project. This project involves the replacement, rehabilitation, or upgrade of the major building systems and addresses deficiencies in the building’s mechanical systems. A new sprinkler system and upgrades to the current fire detection and alarm systems will be part of the project. Additionally, room finishes, including flooring and paint throughout the building will be replaced and upgraded. One complexity of this project will be the sequencing of the construction. The University cannot take an entire 28-story tower off-line for an extended period of time. The project will be completed in phases that will enable the team of contractors to work on ten floors at a time, rolling into the next ten floors as semesters and summers end and begin, thus allowing all other floors of the towers to remain occupied.
For regular updates on all projects, visit the University’s home page and look for the Construction Updates link.
In Athletics, each of the Redbird basketball teams are having another great season. Not only did the men’s team sweep Bradley for the for first time since the 2001-02 season, but as a result, the Redbirds won in Peoria for the first time in eight years. With these last two victories, the ISU men have secured another winning season for Redbird basketball. In the 39 completed years playing at the NCAA Division I level, the Redbirds have had 32 winning seasons.
The Redbird women are also off to a great start in Missouri Valley Conference play and are in first-place in the conference. Through February 6, the Redbirds have won nine in a row and have a two-game lead in the standings. The women’s team is in good shape to capture its third-consecutive regular-season Valley title.
Arch Madness is sure to be a great event for both programs, and I know Redbird Athletics, along with the alumni association, have a lot of great activities planned around each event. I know I am looking forward to both of them.
With that, I would now like to call the Chair of the Campus Communication Committee, Dan Holland, to the podium for a report.