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Minutes for March 1, 2021

The Faculty Senate of Eastern Kentucky University met on Monday, March 1, 2021 via Zoom. Chair Ciocca called the fifth meeting of the academic year to order at approximately 3:30 p.m.

The following members were absent:

B. Dyer K. Engebretson D. Fifer^
T. Gooch E. Meiners T. Otieno
J. Schept* E. Styer*^  

* Indicates prior notification of absence
^ ALT Bill Young attended for D. Fifer
^ ALT Mengkun Yang attended for E. Styer


Senator Crosby moved approval of the February 1, 2021 minutes as written, seconded by Senator Walz. Motion carried. (YES = 47 votes | NO = 0 votes | ABSTAIN = 0 votes) (See Also:  Individual Votes)


    This week we helped our community partners at Baptist Health Richmond, the Madison County Health Department, and our local city/county government establish Madison County’s first regional vaccination site. The COVID-19 vaccination clinic will begin March 3 and be held at the EKU Perkins building. The current vaccination priority is for Phases 1A and 1B, but we are hopeful as those populations gain expedited access to be vaccinated that Phase 1C is soon on the horizon. EKU faculty/staff are considered essential higher education personnel under Phase 1C unless you fall into any other categories due to age or health conditions. You will find more information on vaccine eligibility and appointment scheduling at the Baptist Health COVID-19 website:

    Please also take advantage of the waiting list available for EKU faculty/staff who are willing to be “on call” for vaccination should there be vaccine doses available at the clinic that must be used each day. While the COVID-19 vaccine is not mandatory for our employees, it is recommended if you are eligible using public health guidance.

    EKU is getting a second round of federal stimulus funds. Last spring, a total of $5.2 million was distributed to EKU students as part of the CARES Act. More recently, with the CRRSAA Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF II) enacted in December 2020, another $5.2 million in federal funding is earmarked for direct student aid. We have initiated a plan to distribute $4.8 million of the second round of funding to priority groups of students, as specified by the Department of Education guidelines. A student communication will be sent by email and text Monday, March 1st, and the funds will be distributed as students complete the confirmation process. The remaining student funds will be distributed to students who are not in the priority groups through an expedited application process. We used a similar application with the first round of funding. It provides an opportunity to assist students with emergency needs related to the pandemic, such as job loss or housing insecurity.

    With this round of HEERF II funding, an additional $13 million is provided for institutional use by the University. Guidelines for the appropriate use of these funds are continuing to be developed. We intend to alleviate the financial impact caused by the loss of tuition revenue we have experienced this year due to the COVID pandemic. In light of that decline, we are experiencing a particularly challenging enrollment environment and we are employing multiple strategies and initiatives to counter potential impacts to recruitment and retention of students. We ask everyone to support our efforts and help spread the word of the various elements of the EKU Advantage, including EKU BookSmart, waived application fees, and the Madison County “Promise” and “Colonel Commitment” scholarships.

    Another continued matter of budgetary concern is the proposed legislation related to our state pension system. House Bill 8 has passed the House in early February and is now in the Senate. The bill has some momentum. For some, the bill will offer relief while for others like several universities and other quasi organizations it is a burden. The lack of actionable data has made it hard to land on a fair contribution number. Many organizations including EKU have drastically reduced the number of employees drawing from the KRS system. However, the amount of our contribution is not based on our current situation. It is a complicated model that requires the time and due diligence of our lawmakers to completely understand the unique situations of all organizations affected. It is not a simple solution to years of pension problems, and hopefully the legislature will dive deeper into the topic. Currently, the effect on EKU will be a substantial increase in contributions to the system, way beyond the number of employees in the system we have currently. We will continue to advocate for EKU and share our position on pension issues throughout the legislative session.

    Finally, a recent communication was sent to the campus community on the realignment and renaming of several of our colleges. I am excited to see the new opportunities that will strengthen the excellence of our academic programs in the reimagined Business and STEM colleges as well as the College of Justice, Safety, and Military Science. Along with these new designations we are also preparing to usher in new leadership with the Provost transition and new deans for CLASS, CJSMS, and the Business College. I thank all those assisting in these simultaneous searches and am grateful we can also rely on the expertise and assistance of the national AGB search firm to ensure a smooth search process and help identify a strong candidate pool. Please take advantage of all opportunities to provide your feedback and insight in the various stages of these important searches.

    There will be further discussion on many of these issues later this week when the Board of Regents meets Thursday, March 4. The meeting agenda and video link are available here.


    Faculty Advocate. Beth Polin was in attendance to discuss her role and responsibilities as the new faculty advocate.

    Recruitment Strategies and Faculty Participation. Jill Page and Elizabeth Ballou gave a presentation on recruitment strategies and how faculty and departments can engage in recruitment activities.

    Student Government Association. Eyouel Mekonnen shared the following update.

    • Student Government has voiced support for adding EDC 106 to General Education Element 6.
    • Student Government has been working hard to ensure that there is student representation on all university committees that deal with anything student related.


    Policy 4.3.5 – Drop or Withdrawal from Courses. Senator Crosby moved approval of Policy 4.3.5, seconded by Senator Hagan. Motion carried. (YES = 44 votes  NO = 2 votes  ABSTAIN = 3 votes) (See also: Individual Votes)


    Report from Council on Academic Affairs. Associate Provost Wies presented the following materials for review and notification. As none of these are major changes to the curriculum, a vote for approval is not required.

    College of Business and Technology

    School of Business (SBUS)

    1. Certificate in Banking and Financial Services
    2. MBA Departmental Certificate in Functions of Business

    College of Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences
    Anthropology, Sociology, & Social Work

    1. Certificate in Society and Environmental Stewardship


    1. Certificate in Sports Communication


    1. Certificate in Applied Social Science Analytics

    Honors Program

    1. Departmental Honors Certificate

    College of Education

    Curriculum and Instruction

    1. Director of Special Education
    2. Environmental Education Endorsement
    3. Environmental Education Endorsement in the M.A. in Middle Grades Education (M.A.Ed.) with Teacher Leader Endorsement Preparation
    4. Environmental Education Endorsement in the M.A. in Secondary Grades Education (M.A.Ed.) with Teacher Leader Endorsement Preparation
    5. Instructional Computer Technology (P-12)
    6. Math Specialist Endorsement (P-5)

    Educational Leadership and Counselor Education

    1. M.A. in Student Personnel Services in Higher Ed

    College of Science

    1. BS Geographic Information Science

    College of Business & Technology

    Applied Sciences & Technology (AGRI)

    1. BS Agriculture
    2. BS Animal and Veterinary Sciences
    3. AAS Technical Agriculture
    4. Companion Animal Management Certificate

    School of Business (SBUS)
    Background and Overview of Proposed Changes to the Business Core

    1. BBA Accounting
    2. BBA Computer Information Systems
    3. BBA Finance
    4. BBA General Business
    5. BBA Management
    6. BBA Marketing
    7. BBA Risk Management and Insurance
    8. MBA Experience Program Revision
    9. MBA online Program Revision
    10. Certificate in Accounting
    11. Certificate in Corporate Communication
    12. Certificate in Financial Literacy
    13. Certificate in Global Supply Chain Management
    14. Certificate in Marketing Research
    15. Certificate in Sales
    16. Minor in Banking and Financial Services
    17. Minor in Business
    18. Minor in Entrepreneurship
    19. Minor in Personal Finance
    20. Minor in Risk Management and Insurance
    21. Dept Cert in Foundation of Business Thought
    22. Dept Cert in Technical Skills of Financial and People Management
    23. Dept Cert in Transformation of Inputs to Outputs

    College of Education
    Communication Sciences and Disorders

    1. BS in Communication Disorders
    2. Master of Arts in Communication Disorders

    Curriculum & Instruction

    1. Alternative Routes to Initial Certification (MAT) in Teacher Education
    2. Elementary Education

    Educational Leadership and Counselor Education

    1. M.A.Ed. in Instructional Leadership
    2. Specialist in Education (Ed.S.) Educational Administration and Supervision

    College of Health Sciences
    Health Promotion and Administration

    1. B.S. Health Services Administration

    Occupational Science & Occupational Therapy

    1. Occupational Therapy Doctorate (O.T.D) fall 2021
    2. Occupational Therapy Doctorate (O.T.D) fall 2022
    3. Minor in Horses, Humans and Health

    School of Nursing

    1. Associate of Science in Nursing (A.S.N.)

    College of Justice and Safety

    1. B.S. in in Homeland Security

    College of Letters, Arts, and Social Sciences
    Anthropology, Sociology, & Social Work

    1. B.A. in Anthropology
    2. Minor in Anthropology
    3. Minor in Archaeology
    4. Certificate in Social Analytics and Demographics
    5. Certificate in Sociology and Recreation Studies


    1. B.A. in Communication Studies


    1. B.A. & M.P.A. in Public Administration

    History, Philosophy, and Religious Studies

    1. Minor in Asian Studies
    2. Certificate in Asian Studies


    1. B.S. in Psychology: Autism/Developmental Disabilities Concentration

    College of Science
    Biological Sciences

    1. B.S. Wildlife Management


    1. Forensic Science BS
    2. BS and MS 3+2 Forensic Science/Chemistry
    3. BS and MS 3+2 Chemistry

    Computer Science

    1. BS Computer Science

    Mathematics and Statistics

    1. BS Mathematics
    2. BS Statistics
    3. MA in Applied Mathematics
    4. Applied Data Science Certificate

    General Education ENGAGE Plan. Associate Provost Wies provided information on the General Education ENGAGE Plan which was approved by the General Education Committee on February 2. The program will design and deliver evidence-based professional development to all faculty teaching General Education courses. The program will begin in fall 2021 and will be housed in the Noel Studio.



    The Executive Committee met on February 22, 2021 at 3:30 PM via the Zoom Platform to set the April Senate agenda.

    During his report, Provost Pogatshnik shared that there were more comments than usual from faculty during the 14-day commenting period for Policy 8.3.3 – Employee Conduct. This policy, in its current form, combines Policy 1.6.2 - Non-Retaliation, Policy 8.3.4 - Response to Bullying and Harmful Conduct and Policy 8.3.4R - Progressive Disciplinary Action. Given that these three policies were already in effect, Policy 8.3.3 was brought to the attention of the Senate as an informational item at the February 1st meeting, and the Faculty was given the opportunity to comment for the regulatory 14 days period.

    These revisions were requested by Human Resources with the intention of updating and consolidating this similar information into one location. The new policy received twenty-five comments, with the bulk of the comments regarding the language under “Gross Misconduct”: Any act which serves to defame or malign the reputation of the University. That language, due to faculty feedback, has been revised to read: “Any act undertaken while in the employee’s official university capacity (emphasis mine) that serves to defame or malign the reputation of the university.” Defamation is a statement that injures a third party's reputation. The tort of defamation includes both libel (written statements) and slander (spoken statements). This statement is not intended to infringe upon first amendment rights nor academic freedom. 


    The next Board of Regents meeting is scheduled for Thursday, March 4 at 9 a.m. The meeting will be livestreamed at, and the meeting agenda is available at

    The CPE advised on February 3, “All personnel in higher education are classified as phase 1c along with other frontline essential workers as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” Given this information, along with the message shared by Dr. McFaddin on February 25 by email, please feel free to let our faculty colleagues and other university personnel know that they can use regional vaccination centers as phase 1c slots open, including at the new Baptist Health regional vaccination center in the Perkins Building. A map for regional vaccination centers is linked here. A direct link for Baptist Health’s regional portal is here.

    REPORT FROM COSFL: Senator Woodruff

    COSFL’s next meeting will be on Friday, March 5.

    REPORT FROM PROVOSTSenator Pogatshnik

    Student Progress Reports
    We achieved over 80% participation at all undergraduate course levels for the Four-Week Progress Reports this term. 

    College Realignment
    A realignment of Colleges for the 2021-2022 Academic Year was recently announced. A new STEM College will be created which merges most of the Technology programs in the College of Business and Technology with the College of Science. The new College will enable EKU to provide a more central focus to our STEM programs which play a key role in our Performance-Based Funding metrics. It also offers greater opportunities for inter-departmental collaborations and potential expansion of academic programs in the STEM fields. Dean Otieno and Dean Erekson have been asked to co-lead a transition team that will work out the details for the merger.

    The College of Business and Technology will become the College of Business. This restructuring will provide greater focus on our wide range of programs in business and business administration, particularly as it expands its offerings in online education, including a new online MBA program that is scheduled to launch in fall. Related to this, our undergraduate programs in Military Science will now become part of the College of Justice and Safety.

    College Dean Searches
    EKU has engaged the services of an external search firm, AGB Search out of Washington DC, for all three searches to assure strong candidate pools for each of these critical leadership roles.

    • Dr. Ida Kumoji and Dean Julie George have agreed to lead the search committee for the Dean of CLASS to replace Dean Zeigler, who will begin serving as Provost on July 1 of this year.
    • Dr. Beth Polin and Dr. Ryan Baggett have kindly agreed to serve as co-chairs of the search for the new Dean of the College of Business. The new Dean will replace Dean Tom Erekson who has served as Dean of the College of Business and Technology since 2014. Dean Erekson has been asked to assist in the reorganization and academic program development for the new STEM College once a successor has been named. I’m deeply indebted to Dean Erekson for his exemplary leadership of the College of Business & Technology.
    • Dr. Lynnette Noblitt and Mr. John Williamson have agreed to co-chair the search for the Dean of the College of Justice and Safety. Dr. Derek Paulsen has served as Interim Dean of the College since July, 2020.


    Academic Quality Committee. Senator Jones reported that at the February meeting the committee reviewed the summary of the data analysis from the faculty survey that was sent to faculty in December. A finalized report should be available to the full Senate by April.

    Budget Committee. Senator Woodruff reported that much of the discussion at their last meeting was on our pay structure. That was an issue that was raised among several members of the committee.

    Senator Gremp, Faculty Welfare Committee chair, also agreed to add the discussion to their agenda and invited Pattie Sallee from Human Resources to attend the meeting. Ms. Sallee raised some concerns.

    Senator Woodruff followed up with Ms. Sallee for further clarification. As he understands it, if pay increases are not done across the board, it can negatively impact TRS.

    President McFaddin stated that what will not be calculated in a TRS is a supplemental stipend or a non-base pay calculation for an employee. So if you’re teaching overloads, summer school, or some of those things that are considered non-based compensation in TRS, those would not be included in the final calculation of the high three or five years. He will have a conversation with the Executive Director of TRS to make sure of the correct interpretation.

    Elections & University Nominations Committee. Senator McCardle stated that an email was distributed to faculty this morning calling for nominations for vacancies on the university standing committees. The call for nominations will remain open for two weeks. Then, the committee will create the ballot and send out the notice for the election which will remain open for two weeks. The results of the election should be available by April.

    Information Technology Committee. Senator Nachtwey reported that the committee met last week and decided to develop a document for senators on the current voting process with google forms.

    The committee is also working with the Rules Committee on the best way to handle voting once we return to face-to-face meetings. It is anticipated that we will continue to use google forms and senators will get an email in their outlook accounts with links to vote.

    Rights & Responsibilities Committee. Senator McKinney stated that the committee is still reviewing the Faculty Grievance Policy. Dr. Beth Polin has been invited to attend the next meeting.

    Rules Committee Report. Senator Kay encouraged all committee chairs to review their internal procedures and send any updates to her by March 5.

    The Rules committee will meet on Monday to continue discussions on updates to the Faculty Handbook, in particular the definitions of faculty. Dr. Wies and Haley Norberg have been invited to attend the meeting.

    Faculty Welfare Committee. Senator Gremp reported that the committee met last week to continue discussions and provide input on ways to keep and retain retired faculty. Our suggestions seemed to be well received and we plan to follow up to see if any of those will be implemented.

    As Senator Woodruff indicated earlier, the committee met with Patty Sallee from Human Resources to discuss our pay structure and pay increases and the potential impact on retirement benefits.

    Ad Hoc Committee on OERs. Senator Woodruff announced that the committee submitted a proposal to the Board of Regents for consideration for the Innovation Funds again for next year.

    The Faculty Outreach sub-committee is working on a faculty survey which should be distributed soon.


    Senator Pogatshnik moved to adjourn at approximately 5:15pm.

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