UO Trustees post self-evaluation of Board’s performance, want audit info

They want more diversity on the board, more info on finances and audits, more time to interact with students, faculty, deans, and ask questions and have discussions, and less emphasis on one-sided presentations:

Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 12.26.48 PM

Just kidding, that’s the OSU Board of Trustees. Full 7 page evaluation here. I have no idea if the UO Board has done anything similar.

UO Board meetings video: Senate myths, Divest UO, Deady denaming, etc

The UO BOT does not post videos of the board meetings – so UO Matters operatives will do it for them. More to come. (Links fixed, thanks.)

Randy Sullivan’s farewell speech to the Board: “Six Myths the UO Trustees believe about the University Senate” starts at https://youtu.be/qn1T21TlS_0?t=2h8m2s

Faculty Union President Michael Dreiling explains to the Trustees how UO gives its students education in science, finance, and politics – and they’re now using it to fight for CO2 reductions. Starts at https://youtu.be/qn1T21TlS_0?t=1h8m9s, the students follow Dreiling.

UO alumni and faculty use the Black Students campaign to rename Deady and the Boards public comment period to teach us all a little Oregon history. Starts at https://youtu.be/qn1T21TlS_0?t=1h36m2s. I’m hoping history lessons will become a regular part of the board meetings. I’m working on a talk about Treetops, Phimister Proctor, and Irene Hazard Gerlinger.

ASUO Student Government President Helena Schlegel – chased off the board by Chair Chuck Lillis – returns for a postscript. starts at https://youtu.be/qn1T21TlS_0?t=1h57m45s

June 2 Board meeting, continued:

The morning committee meetings are here. Live video here. Some live blogging below. Usual disclaimer: my opinion of what people said, should have said, meant, or should have meant.

Highlights (to be updated):

  • Strong public comments from the the Divest UO students, who describe the contempt they’ve received from the UO Foundation while making rational, reasoned arguments in favor of CO2 divestment. An impressive group of students. They talk about the Divest Fund – a fiendishly clever plan to outflank the UO Foundation’s monopoly on donations to UO. I can’t wait to hear what Foundation CEO Paul Weinhold has to say, later in the meeting.
  • Outgoing Senate President Randy Sullivan demolishes the Board’s “six myths about the Senate”.
  • UO Foundation CEO Paul Weinhold reports on high earnings, investments in alternative energy, high cost of unwinding the foundation’s troubled tar-sands private equity deal.

More on Divest UO – an OPB interview:

We hear why some students at the University of Oregon want the college to stop investing in fossil fuels companies. Guests: Oregon senior and co-director of the Divest UO campaign, Erik Jung; and University of Oregon Foundation President, Paul Weinhold.

Thursday, June 2, 2016 at 12:45 pm. Full Board.  Materials

12:30 pm (other times approximate) – Convene Public Meeting

– Call to order, roll call, verification of quorum
– Opening remarks
– Approval of March 2016 minutes (Action)
– Public comment

Those wishing to provide comment must sign up advance and review the public comment guidelines either online (http://trustees.uoregon.edu/meetings) or at the check‐in table at the meeting.

I’m sorry, I’m listening not blogging. I’m hoping there’s video somewhere.

Strong public comments from the the Divest UO students, who describe the contempt they’ve received from the UO Foundation while making rational, reasoned arguments in favor of CO2 divestment. An impressive group of students. They talk about the Divest Fund – a fiendishly clever plan to outflank the UO Foundation’s monopoly on donations to UO. I can’t wait to hear what Foundation CEO Paul Weinhold has to say, later in the meeting.

De-naming Deady: Fascinating to hear the alumni speak about Deady and Oregon history. How often does William Lloyd Garrison’s name come up in a Board meeting?

1. End of Year Reports

– Senate President Randy Sullivan

In homage to President Schill’s excellent speech yesterday, on “Six Myths About Higher Education”, Senate President Randy Sullivan marks his last Board meeting with a report titled “Six Myths About The UO Senate”. (Schill loves this, of course.) Most of these myths originated with the very bitter Bob Berdahl, and were taken up with enthusiasm by Lillis, and too many others on the UO Board. The faculty representative on the Board, Susan Gary (Law) did nothing to fight these memes.

Randy is knocking these myths down one-by-one, starting with a reminder that it is faculty governance, operating through institutions like the Senate, that make U.S. higher education the envy of the world. He gives full credit to Mike Schill for the progress that has been made over the past year repairing the damage done by Berdahl, Gottfredson and Coltrane.

‐Associated Students of the University of Oregon, 2015‐16 President Helena Schlegel

Helena was the student representative until last year, when she left in frustration over her dismissive treatment. Her report touches on the tuition increase, Black Student Demands, Shasta Lake.

2. President’s Report, President Michael Schill

Sorry, listening not blogging. Close to $1B in campaign, 60% for the academic side, ratio has been increasing.

3. Seconded Motions and Resolutions (Actions)

‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: AY2016‐17 expenditure authorization (pending June 2 committee action)
‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: Naming of certain facilities (pending June 2 committee action)
‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: Multimedia license agreement (pending June 2 committee action)

4. University of Oregon Foundation Overview, University of Oregon Foundation President and CEO Paul Weinhold

Video of Weinhold’s presentation here:

Screen Shot 2015-12-19 at 11.33.15 PM

Whoops, that’s Weinhold in Doha, promising the full faith and credit of his $1B foundation to the notoriously corrupt IAAF and their President Lamine Diack to cover any losses or cost overruns if they will hold their Track and Field Championships in Eugene. They took him up on his offer.

Weinhold tells the UO Board that, under CIO Jay Namyet, the UO Foundation is doing a stellar job investing funds.

Are any of the Trustees going to ask about the Divest UO campaign? Yes, Ann Curry: What about fossil fuels investments. Are they part of the reason for Namyet’s high returns? Weinhold: Syracuse and UMass say they are divesting, but if you look at the language they haven’t. We have 1% in carbon, 6% in alternative energy. Weinhold:

“We don’t ever want to put ourselves in a situation where we would be liars.”

On that topic, here’s the UO Foundation’s Chief Investment Officer Jay Namyet’s pissy email to the UO Divest students (more here):

On 2015/04/09 10:05, Jay Namyet wrote:

[UO Divest undergraduate student],

When I asked you all why you were meeting with the president, the response I got was to learn his personal thoughts about this issue.

Turns out, not really.

As is indicated by [UO Divest undergraduate student] below in [pronoun redacted] email to the president’s office, and just as you three did with me this morning, this is about pressing your argument for divestment even though you have already received responses from all parties involved.

I offered an olive branch to you all last meeting and was the basis for today’s meeting. You all chose to ignore that and continue to beat the same drum of divestment.

I don’t appreciate being lied to about your intent of meeting with the president and I don’t appreciate your not honoring the reason for meeting today with me.

As a result, you have now lost the opportunity for further dialogue with me.

Jay

Trustee Susan Gary (Law) then lavishes Weinhold with praise for doing so much.

5. University “Clusters of Excellence” Initiative – Update, Provost and Senior Vice President Scott Coltrane, Vice President for Research Brad Shelton

I’m looking at Coltrane’s slides and not seeing anything about the contentious Sports Product Design proposal that Lillis was pushing last year. Wasn’t that one of the clusters? Or was it a spire? Weren’t we going to get $20M in donations to pay for it?  We didn’t, but now Coltrane is claiming it will pay for itself.

Instead, Coltrane has a slew of impressive looking new science hires to announce, funded in part by donors and in part by the Schill’s internal cost-savings.

Ballmer: Would it be better to see a more directed approach from the central administration?

Schill: It’s very hard to have a top down approach with top faculty. We can put them in a lab together, give them resources, but we don’t have the expertise to direct them in particular research directions – they are the ones on the cutting edge, they are the only people in the world who know where research should go. Ballmer pushes back a little: university has already done some direction, by picking the clusters. You can make sure they understand the high expectations. Schill: Oh they do!

~ 4:00PM Thursday. Meeting Adjourned

 

Friday, June 3:

The BOT meeting was originally scheduled for June 2 and 3, then changed to a one day meeting.  I found out that they’d set aside June 3 for a closed “training session”.  The last time they did this BOT Secretary Angela Wilhelms kicked Diane Dietz and me out of the room, and the board then met with Vin Lananna about the multi-million dollar TrackTown subsidy plan.

There was no information about the June 3 meeting on the Board’s website. It took a public records request to find out what Friday’s meeting  meeting was about:

Dear Ms Thornton –

This is a public records request for a copy of the agenda and meeting materials for the UO Board of Trustees June 3 “training day” session.I ask for a fee waiver on the basis of public interest, and ask for a prompt response given that the meeting takes place on Friday.

I am ccing UO Trustee Susan Gary (Law) as she should have a copy of these public records, and should be able to forward them at minimal expense.

Thanks, Bill Harbaugh

Today I got the agenda and the packet, here. The PRO Office sent their usual zipped pdf. It seems they are using a lossy compression algorithm designed to make reproduction and character-recognition more difficult:Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 1.44.49 PM

But GC Kevin Reed was kind enough to send the original, no charge:

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 1.45.34 PM

Haven’t had time to read it, but it seems to be about how to perform your due diligence as a member of a university board. What a great idea, because the past three years of Chuck Lillis’s leadership have been pretty rocky.

Live-blog: UO Board of Trustees to meet June 2nd – and June 3rd?

These are the morning committee meetings. The afternoon full board meeting is here.

Live video here. Some live blogging below. Usual disclaimer: my opinion of what people said, should have said, meant, or should have meant.

Highlights (to be updated):

  • Still no information from Trustee Susan Gary on the secret meetings tomorrow.
  • 8 months after UO’s Chief Auditor left in frustration with the lack of cooperation from the VPFA’s office, the office is still in disarray. Just as UO is going through an administrative realignment process where good, independent information is key, the UO board and the President have no good independent information. Which gives Moffitt and Shelton a lot of power.
  • Gigabits.
  • Jamie Moffitt reports that the budget is “run rate even”. Turns out the union raises didn’t break the bank after all. No one asks her about her $10M gift to the law school, and $5M to AAA.

Thursday, June 2, 2016 at 8:00 am. Executive and Audit Committee. Materials (now updated w/ audit).

Ford Alumni Center, Giustina Ballroom

Convene – Call to order and roll call – Approval of December 2015 EAC minutes (Action)

1. Quarterly Audit Report and FY2016‐17 Audit Plan, Chief Auditor Trisha Burnett

From the materials: During FY16, the Office of Internal Audit (Internal Audit) met with the Director of Enterprise Risk Services (ERS) and discussed the risk assessment process. It was determined that Internal Audit would collaborate with ERS for the enterprise risk assessment during early 2016. However, this collaborative process was subsequently rescheduled for fall 2016. Internal Audit has experienced nearly complete turnover in staffing during FY16. As a result, risks identified during the prior year risk assessment process have not been fully evaluated. For the FY17 audit plan, Internal Audit will revisit information gathered during the prior year as a basis for the audit plan. This includes review of the prior year audit plan, the results of the Strategic Enterprise Risk Management & Compliance (SERMC) committee risk assessment process, and prior year interviews conducted by Internal Audit. Feedback from senior leadership will be obtained to identify necessary adjustments.

Many processes and systems are currently being evaluated by management for potential changes. Time will be allocated on the audit plan to allow for advisory services in these areas. Internal Audit will advise on internal controls, safety, security, compliance, efficiency, and effectiveness. The progress and action plans will be included in Board communications.

[Given all this turmoil, you’d think that the Trustees might get a little time to go through the latest audit? Nope:] “Note: The quarterly audit report will be provided at the meeting.”  And it is, in the newly updated supplementary material, here. Pretty skimpy. The Athletics Risk Assessment is still on hold, as it has been for a year.

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 8.56.26 AM

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 8.56.34 AM

UO’s first internal auditor was hired in May 2014, and left in October 2015. She was very frustrated by the lack of cooperation from VPFA Jamie Moffitt – at one point telling me UO Matters had information she couldn’t get from the VPFA. One of her assistant’s also left. Her other assistant, Trisha Burnett, was promoted w/o an external search.

Burnett’s presentation basically involves explaining the fact that in the two years the office has been in place it has conducted almost no internal audits. I would think the board – which has the obligation to exercise due diligence – would be pushing hard on this. They are not.

Burnett says that she’s now restarting the audit plan Muirhead put forward last year. But first she has to hire two new staff, and perhaps hire an external firm to help. It’s now been eight months since Muirhead left, and nothing substantive has been done. Not even a hire. Amazing.

Here’s the new 2017 audit plan:

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 8.35.20 AM Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 8.34.58 AM Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 8.34.39 AM

And here’s last years plan, which the board approved almost exactly a year ago:

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 9.06.55 AM

The Chief Auditor reports to the Board of Trustees, and is central to their ability to do their due diligence. Virtually none of the work above was done. You’d think the board, and especially Chuck Lillis, would be a little more concerned. I wonder what their D&O insurance covers?

Lillis got into a bit of D&O trouble when he was on the Washington Mutual Board, which went through one of the largest bankruptcies in US history:

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 9.15.19 AM

 Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 9.16.10 AM

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 9.20.06 AM

The D&O insurance company then sued the WaMu directors, including Lillis, arguing that they’d failed to exercise their due diligence and that they should be personally liable. The lawsuits finally ended with a $37M payout. There was another $49M for ERISA violations.

For some reason Lillis’s WaMu service is not mentioned in his UO trustees bio: “…. and has served on the boards of private and public companies including Williams Co., Medco and SuperValu. He is a member of the board of SomaLogic …”

2. University IT and Computing Priorities Update, Interim CIO Chris Krabiel; Professor of Computer and Information Science and IT Leadership Team Member Joe Sventek

Good presentation, tough problems.

Thursday, June 2, 2016 at 9:00 am. Finance and Facilities Committee Meeting.  Materials

Convene
– Call to order and roll call
– Approval of March 2016 FFC minutes (Action)
– Public comment

1. Naming of Certain University Facilities

– Berwick Hall (Oregon Bach Festival), Executive Director of the Oregon Bach Festival Janelle McCoy

– Bowerman Track & Field Complex, University of Oregon Foundation President and CEO Paul Weinhold

2. Contract Approval – Multimedia Rights Agreement (Action), Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Rob Mullens

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 9.30.47 AM

Here’s hoping Eric Roedl read this contract a little more carefully than the Bowl Insurance deal. The board has some good questions. Lillis asks AGC Bryan Dearinger what he thinks of the contract. Dearinger says it’s more transparent, more flexible. GC Kevin Reed says that the current contract prohibited UO from shopping around for competitive bids, they had to get an “independent evaluation” to use in renegotiating with IMG. I wonder which previous UO GC approved that clause? Grier? Geller? Park?

The Ducks now need to renegotiate their Nike deal, which expires next year. It’s a great deal for the coaches and JH administrators who want free shoes, but not so good for UO. Some old links:

12/9/2014 update: Which football championship team has the worst Nike contract? The Ducks.

From Matthew Kish in the Portland Business Journal:

Here’s a breakdown of Nike’s [athletic apparel] deal with each university in the playoffs. The terms cover the 2014-15 academic year [reordered in descending order of cash payment]:

– Ohio State: $2.5 million in equipment and apparel and nearly $1.5 million in cash. The university also gets $150,000 in discretionary apparel, typically for athletic department personnel.

– Florida State: $3 million in equipment and apparel and $1.4 million in cash.

– Alabama: $2.8 million in equipment and apparel, $780,000 in cash.

– Oregon: $2.2 million in equipment and apparel and $600,000 in cash. The university also gets $185,000 in discretionary apparel, typically for athletic department personnel.

But hey, we’re #1 in “discretionary apparel”!

From what I can tell from Dave Hubin’s redacted public records, $30K of that goes to our colleagues in Johnson Hall, presumably including some who signed off on the contract. So they’ll be looking good on their Jan 1 Rose Bowl junkets.

Screen Shot 2013-12-31 at 1.05.07 PM

2/3/2014 update: Under Armour pays Notre Dame $9M, Nike pays UO $600K

Nike just signed Tennessee to a new deal for $1M cash a year, plus $2M signing bonus.

1/23/2014: Our Uncle Phil drives a tough bargain. Nike’s merchandising deal with UO pays us just $600K a year. Meanwhile Notre Dame just closed on a 10 year deal with Nike competitor Under Armour for ~$9M a year. Bloomberg financial news has a report here:

3. Quarterly Finance Report, Vice President for Finance and Administration/CFO Jamie Moffitt

The usual, it’s “run rate even”. Tuition revenue is up – students taking more credits – but so are employee costs. Next year costs will be up more but the tuition increases will cover it.

Willcox: So we could have had a smaller tuition increase?

Curry: If we’re this tight, are we going to have to look at cuts again? Schill: We always need to be thinking about cuts and efficiencies. [too bad we still don’t have a functioning internal audit office to look for those efficiencies.]

Schill: Worried about potential for a state budget deficit, state cuts. Would have been irresponsible to have not increased tuition by the amounts we did.

Curry: Are the faculty being advised on the importance of getting students to take more classes?

Schill: Yes, but it’s going to take a culture shift on the part of the students.

Paustian: Do we have the faculty to teach students, if they all start taking more classes?

Moffitt: We’re hiring more faculty.

Schill: We’re gearing up to do this, but you’re absolutely right, we need to work on supply, not just demand.

4. Fiscal Year 2016‐17 Capital and Operating Expenditure Authorizations (Action), President Michael Schill and Vice President for Finance and Administration/CFO Jamie Moffitt

Moffitt: We secured AA2 and AA- ratings, got great rates, debt will be used to pay for new dorms, working capital for athletics, etc.

See page 17 of your packet here:

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 10.03.12 AM

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 10.03.26 AM

No significant increase in revenue from philanthropy? Oh, right, this is UO’s academic budget, not the Duck’s budget.

Question about the cuts – which I don’t see very well documented in the materials.

Moffitt: I had to personally cut $1M from my budget, it was very difficult.

Curry: What’s going on with the large increases in “supplies and services”?

Moffitt: I’ll look into it.

Wilcox: Why don’t you break it down more?

[Very good to see the board getting more skeptical about Moffitt’s budget reports. Their auditor really should be helping with this.]

Willcox to Moffitt: CAS Dean Marcus gave the campus very careful explanations for his budget cuts. It would help build trust if your office would do that for the rest of the campus cuts as well. [I tried to get that info through the SBC. Didn’t get it.]

Moffitt: We’ve also been charged with finding additional 3% in cuts over next several years.

Willcox: Pushes back, calls for more transparency.

Estimated cash payments for 2016-17 capital projects:

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 10.25.31 AM

Where’s the athletics? Hayward Field tart-up?

Thursday, June 2, 2016 at 10:30 am. Academic and Student Affairs Committee.  Materials

Convene

– Call to order and roll call
– Introductory comments and agenda review
– Approval of March and April 2016 ASAC minutes (Action)
– Public comment

1. Update on University Ombuds Program and Initiatives, Interim Ombudsperson Jennifer Reynolds

Reynolds gives a good, brief report. Not quite as comprehensive and interesting as former Ombud Bruce McAllister’s:

2. Classified Staff
Deep Mistrust of AA/EO
Classified staff report high levels of distrust and low levels of confidence in the
fairness, competence, and responsiveness of the University’s AA/EO function.
Examples of concerns reported include reaching decisions and conclusions about
employee medical fitness without adequate input from an employee’s physician,
sharing information outside of the appropriate confines of HR record-keeping, and
generating shadow files. Ombuds does not independently investigate concerns and
draws no conclusions beyond noting a pattern of reported perception. I also note that
perception does not necessarily equate to fact, but patterns are important to the
acceptance and long-term efficacy of any particular program.
Patterns of abusive management style in trades positions.
Ombuds received extensive reports of managers in the “blue collar” positions being
subjected to perceived retaliation for surfacing safety concerns or physical injury.
Patterns of perceived avoidance of “Weingarten” protections
Ombuds received reports that employees felt “ambushed” in meetings that were
announced with a more generic topic, but in actually included disciplinary action,
which the employee perceived implicated certain NLRB protections.

3. Officers of Administration and Other Non-union Positions
Widespread perception of a lack of functional protections equivalent to those
available to unionized employees.
Officers of Administration consistently report a perception of an utter lack of due
process protections associated with their position. They report an incomprehensible
and unusable employee grievance process and a widespread sense of vulnerability.
Further, employees in this category report that they have no sense of confidence that
their managers will exercise progressive discipline or even candidly communicate
performance issues and expectations. Rather, these employees report that they
perceive that their managers simply use the annual contract renewal/non-renewal
process to winnow out non-classified personnel perceived to have performance
issues.

4. Faculty
Widespread perception of an academic culture that accepts abrasive behavior
and harassment.
There was a strong pattern of concerns reported among faculty that, as colleagues,
faculty are very hard on one another, and that department heads, deans, and other
administrators do not enforce standards of civility.

Perceptions that University “administration” is not transparent
A significant number of faculty reported that they do not trust “Johnson Hall,” and
that “Johnson Hall” resists sharing information and reacts to faculty who speak out defensively and with a tendency towards laying blame or finding faulty with the source of the particular comments.

Polarization … For a large portion of my tenure as ombuds, it was clearly apparent that faculty had splintered into subgroups around polarizing issues, such as the role of NCAA athletics on a campus, or the appropriate role of the President in challenging personnel or student issues. This extreme polarization led to a widely perceived sense that “Johnson Hall” was operating with a “bunker mentality” and refused to engage. The more that “Johnson Hall” was perceived as refusing to engage, the more activated groups of faculty became. I note that the polarization was not focused exclusively on the Administration versus Faculty vector, but included polarization among faculty, some who perceive that the UO Matters blog inhibits safe and open communication, in itself, and others who believe that the venue provides a valuable independent forum.

2. Classified Staff
Deep Mistrust of AA/EO
Classified staff report high levels of distrust and low levels of confidence in the
fairness, competence, and responsiveness of the University’s AA/EO function.
Examples of concerns reported include reaching decisions and conclusions about
employee medical fitness without adequate input from an employee’s physician,
sharing information outside of the appropriate confines of HR record-keeping, and
generating shadow files. Ombuds does not independently investigate concerns and
draws no conclusions beyond noting a pattern of reported perception. I also note that
perception does not necessarily equate to fact, but patterns are important to the
acceptance and long-term efficacy of any particular program.
Patterns of abusive management style in trades positions.
Ombuds received extensive reports of managers in the “blue collar” positions being
subjected to perceived retaliation for surfacing safety concerns or physical injury.
Patterns of perceived avoidance of “Weingarten” protections
Ombuds received reports that employees felt “ambushed” in meetings that were
announced with a more generic topic, but in actually included disciplinary action,
which the employee perceived implicated certain NLRB protections.

3. Officers of Administration and Other Non-union Positions
Widespread perception of a lack of functional protections equivalent to those
available to unionized employees.
Officers of Administration consistently report a perception of an utter lack of due
process protections associated with their position. They report an incomprehensible
and unusable employee grievance process and a widespread sense of vulnerability.
Further, employees in this category report that they have no sense of confidence that
their managers will exercise progressive discipline or even candidly communicate
performance issues and expectations. Rather, these employees report that they
perceive that their managers simply use the annual contract renewal/non-renewal
process to winnow out non-classified personnel perceived to have performance
issues.

4. Faculty
Widespread perception of an academic culture that accepts abrasive behavior
and harassment.
There was a strong pattern of concerns reported among faculty that, as colleagues,
faculty are very hard on one another, and that department heads, deans, and other
administrators do not enforce standards of civility.

Perceptions that University “administration” is not transparent
A significant number of faculty reported that they do not trust “Johnson Hall,” and
that “Johnson Hall” resists sharing information and reacts to faculty who speak out defensively and with a tendency towards laying blame or finding faulty with the source of the particular comments.

Polarization … For a large portion of my tenure as ombuds, it was clearly apparent that faculty had splintered into subgroups around polarizing issues, such as the role of NCAA athletics on a campus, or the appropriate role of the President in challenging personnel or student issues. This extreme polarization led to a widely perceived sense that “Johnson Hall” was operating with a “bunker mentality” and refused to engage. The more that “Johnson Hall” was perceived as refusing to engage, the more activated groups of faculty became. I note that the polarization was not focused exclusively on the Administration versus Faculty vector, but included polarization among faculty, some who perceive that the UO Matters blog inhibits safe and open communication, in itself, and others who believe that the venue provides a valuable independent forum.

Reynold and Reed then discuss the progress on hiring a permanent replacement for MacAllister – sounds like finalists should be on campus in a month or so. Here’s hoping that there will plenty of time for meetings with OA’s, staff, faculty, etc.

Willcox asks about what sort of cases she’s getting. Reynolds: About 100 so far, about 1/4 students, 1/3 OAs. Appreciates her work for SEIU staff. [I’ve met with her too, she’s very helpful.]

2. Overview of Graduate Education at the UO, Graduate School Dean Scott Pratt

Pratt: We assess graduate programs, provide resources, serve as center for innovations. Talks about role in staying in the AAU. PhD enrollment is small relative to other AAU’s, but delivers in terms of time to degree and completion.

Pratt doesn’t have a 5 year plan, he’s got a 1 year plan. And he’s already started implementing it, with new first year fellowships funded by Schill’s office. $800K recurring, plus $100K for underrepresented minorities. These fellowships and top-off awards are essential for getting top students, who are heavily recruited by other universities.

Pratt got this money out to the departments out very quickly. Entering PhD students increased from 188 last year to 248 this year. Largest entering class in 5 years – and high quality ones, more diverse. Fabulous.

Ford: Very happy with the high quality of UO’s graduate education – wonders if the state and the HECC supports it, or, as Schill said yesterday, that they just wanted us to be a little better than Idaho?

Schill: We’re going to need support from Ben Cannon and HECC – including funding for new science labs –  to continue to make progress. We’ve have enough lab space for only one more year of science hires. Then we’re full-up. The state prioritizes undergrad access, gives us very little for research. The future of this state is going to depend on making the transition to the new information based economy – and we need this.

Schill: Want to congratulate Pratt for doing more than I thought he good do with this $800K. We need to find more resources for more of this.

Pratt: UO’s research is competitive on a national, international scale. Oregon needs this.

Curry: What are the stellar programs? Pratt: Most selective in terms of enrollment are Psychology. Chemistry, Bio. Philosophy, English. Curry: Why? Pratt: Because of the faculty. Prospective graduate students come to UO because they see the faculty’s research and want to be part of it.

Schill: One new thing Pratt did was to allocate funds on the basis of quality. [Unlike Shelton’s budget model, which rewards departments for teaching low cost courses with easy A’s. Why is Shelton still in charge of that?]

3. University Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiatives Update, President Michael Schill and Vice President for Equity and Inclusion Yvette Alex‐Assensoh

Here are my comments from when this was presented to the Senate in January:

Review of IDEAL Framework; Sari Pascoe, Office of Equity & Inclusion

Here’s a link to the final version of UO’s 2006 Diversity plan. This was sent to the Senate by President Frohnmayer and approved after a contentious set of meetings, during which it came out that the administration had agree to hire a diversity director and prepare a diversity plan as part of the legal settlement with Joe Wade, an African-American administrator who had sued Frohnmayer and Provost John Moseley for discrimination in hiring. Frohnmayer had kept this hidden from the faculty and even from the person he hired as Diversity Director.

That diversity director left, and was replaced by Charles Martinez (Education). After faculty complaints about the text and the process, Martinez heavily revised the plan and Frohnmayer brought it to the Senate. There was a healthy debate, the minutes are here. One snippet:

Senator Chris Ellis, economics, then rose to oppose the motion. He felt everyone in the room believed diversity was a good thing because they cared about some of the underlying problems in our society. However, Senator Ellis felt that the current plan was fundamentally and logically flawed, and as such, could not achieve its goals. He noted that there was a large body of literature on the economics of education and he introduced some issues raised in that literature. One issue is that economically disadvantaged people historically do poorly in education, and Blacks and Hispanics have been historically poor, thus there are not enough persons in these underrepresented groups to fill the “pipeline” to become college undergraduates and graduates from which to make hires. He suggested the proposed plan does not address the pipeline issue. He concluded by noting that there is a large bureaucracy with a large budget devoted to diversity already, and he was concerned about resource questions. He proposed putting our resources into resolving the pipeline issue.

The plan was approved. It included a very expansive definition of diversity, and explicit recognition that “diversity of thought” was of primary interest to the university, given our academic mission. Income and class and political beliefs were also included:

Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 12.14.59 PM

Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 12.21.47 PM

The language in the newly proposed 2015-16 diversity plan, here, is much less inclusive, focusing on race and ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, and disability status:

Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 12.25.32 PM

And

Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 4.12.11 PM

Sullivan: I asked VP Alex-Assensoh what the Senate could do to help with diversity, she asked us to get involved in the IDEAL process.

More on the OEI page here.

[Sorry, I’m listening not blogging.]

Psaki: Concerned about the faculty review part. During bargaining, the faculty union was concerned that some faculty, particularly women and minorities, where not being recognized or rewarded for their work on equity and inclusion. The union and the administration agreed to language on this. In contrast this plan imposes a new unfunded time-mandate on all faculty, which was explicitly not part of what we agreed to.

Sullivan: The Senate will post this plan for discussion, and this is an example of the sorts of issues that should be raised.

Schill: Will have Deans prepare diversity plans, and will evaluate them on these.

Schill then goes into the Black Student Demands, and responses. Thirteen demands, 6 responses so far.

[Sorry, I’m too hungry to blog. The Trustees got bacon and eggs, the peanut gallery got coffee. He’d better wrap this up soon, or nobody is getting lunch.]

Colas: Asks if the Board can meet with the Black Students themselves.

Lunch: Full board starts at 12:45.

 

UO Board to give up some control of Duck athletics

Back in 1987 the OUS Board established several policies establishing their control over intercollegiate athletics. These became UO policies in 2014. Tomorrow at 10AM in the JH Conference room, UO Board of Trustees Secretary Angela Wilhelms is going to try and persuade the Policy Advisory Committee to recommend that two of the three policies governing athletics should be repealed, under the argument that the OUS board is defunct and the policies are irrelevant. However, for most other policies that mention OUS, UO’s approach has simply been to replace OUS with the UO BOT. And many parts of the OUS policies are still highly relevant, if in need of some revision:

OUS 31 Statement Regarding Intercollegiate Athletics

Screen Shot 2016-04-05 at 2.35.22 PM

OUS 30 Fiscal Policies for Intercollegiate Athletics:

Screen Shot 2016-04-05 at 2.05.34 PM

 

The Intercollegiate Athletics policy is not (yet?) proposed for repeal: In addition to financial constraints on athletics, it imposes a code of ethics on the coaches:

Screen Shot 2016-04-05 at 2.42.15 PM

 

Independent boards fail to deliver, so universities ask state for $100M

The tit-for-tat from the Duck boosters who wanted the state to give them a Board they could control was their promise that private donations would soar. They haven’t – except of course for sports facilities like the Mariota worship center, the new softball egofice, and the Hayward Field tart-up. The state, on the other hand, has been increasing its higher education support, albeit by small amounts and from a very low base. Now the university presidents are going back to the state for another $100M, mostly to cover PERS increases resulting from the failure of HLGR’s Bill Gary and Sharon Rudnick to convince the state supreme court that Kitzhaber’s reform package was legal. Andrew Theen has the report on the new ask in the Oregonian, here:

Last summer, lawmakers approved $665 million in general support for the universities, a 27 percent increase over the 2013-15 biennium. Officials also dramatically increased funding for the Oregon Opportunity Grant, the state’s largest financial aid program for needy Oregonians.

The $100 million request represents a 15 percent increase over current levels.

Universities say the $100 million would help protect students from the burdensome costs associated with increased Public Employee Retirement System obligations that will hit schools and the public sector hard in 2017. PERS costs alone will increase $59.4 million during the two-year period, according to the report.

For years, schools have argued the state’s formula for distributing money is unfair. The universities say after 2011, the state started treating them like vendors rather than state-funded agencies. The state’s share of university funding did not “capture the true costs” of running a university, including mandatory services such as retirement, healthcare and collective bargaining costs.

I wonder how many legislators are going to look at UO and say “Didn’t we just give you $25M for a Track championship? What are your real priorities?”

Meanwhile the “Oregonians for Higher Education Excellence” PAC set up to push the independent board proposal through the legislature has been dissolved, and the donors have taken their money back:

Screen Shot 2016-04-01 at 1.08.34 PM

Two days later, UO Board of Trustees Chair and tenure skeptic Chuck Lillis turned around and gave $5000 to noted higher education reformer, free-speech advocate, and presidential candidate Ben Carson. Perhaps Lillis liked what Carson had said on Meet the Press a few weeks earlier. It’s all about the students. And Jesus:

Screen Shot 2016-04-01 at 4.28.05 PM

From InsideHigherEd, in October:

Ben Carson, currently leading the Republican candidates for president in Iowa, on Sunday explained for the first time how the Education Department, in an administration he wants to lead, would monitor “extreme bias” by colleges.

What Carson had said to date: Twice in the campaign before Sunday, Carson had said that he wants the Education Department to identify “extreme bias” and work to cut off federal funds to colleges and universities found to engage in such bias. But he had said nothing about how this bias would be uncovered (and he has not responded to inquiries from Inside Higher Ed).

How “extreme bias” would be identified: On the NBC News show Meet the Press, Chuck Todd asked him how the department would do this. Carson corrected Todd when the journalist referred to his campaign against “bias.” Carson quickly said it was only “extreme bias,” and said that he had given this serious thought, that this was “not just spouting off.”

Carson said the Education Department would get help in identifying extreme bias. “You invite the students at universities to send in their complaints,” he said, and then the department would start investigations.

Screen Shot 2016-04-01 at 1.16.51 PM

Screen Shot 2016-04-01 at 1.17.02 PM

Should UO rename Judge Deady Hall?

3/4/2016: Diane Dietz has the latest on this increasingly interesting debate, in the RG here:

… Eminent black scholar Edwin Coleman said it would be a “disgrace” to remove the name of Matthew Deady from the oldest hall on the University of Oregon’s campus to mollify students who condemn Deady’s racist history.

… “He was a staunch supporter of (Oregon suffragist) Abigail Scott Duniway. He was a champion of women’s voting rights,” Coleman said. “He called for black suffrage. He kept a warm relationship with Portland’s African-American religious community.”

He opposed the ­murder of Indians and the mistreatment of Chinese immigrants, he said. “He knew Chief Joseph, and he had his portrait hanging in his chambers.”

Coleman and other researchers say they’ve combed through Deady’s voluminous writings and accounts of his actions. “There’s no trace of personal bigotry in his public actions after 1860 as far as I’ve been able to research,” Coleman said.

“Forgive this brother”

Deady, the first federal judge in Oregon territory, was the head of the University of Oregon’s first board of trustees. He drafted the university’s charter and included prohibitions against discrimination based on religion or politics.

But it took football to integrate UO racially, in 1926. From Fishduck.com:

Robinson was a multi-sport star at Jefferson High School in Portland, a gifted halfback on the gridiron and pole-vaulter on the track, as well as baseball and basketball. Williams meanwhile was a bruising runner in his own right coming from Washington High School in Portland. Both were high school friends and rivals, both selected First Team All-City their senior years, and both packing the stands at Multnomah Field on gamedays with eager fans fanatically following their athletic performances.

Together, the two of them would help Coach McEwan usher in a new era at Oregon, both in success on the field and in a far more important way off of it, paving the path for other minority student-athletes to compete at the University of Oregon.

It was not without its difficulties though, as both Robinson and Williams were initially barred from living in campus dorms, having to find housing in off-campus apartments during their freshman year. Their white teammates signed a petition and submitted it to the school under protest demanding that their fellow players be allowed to live on campus in the dormitories alongside their peers. By their sophomore year the university relented, allowing Robinson and Williams to reside in Friendly Hall, albeit separated from others and permitted to enter the building only through their own designated entrance.

12/16/2015: UO students protest calls to keep the Deady name, on the RG Op-Ed page, here:

The article and the alumnus, Scott Bartlett, emphasize in their defense of Deady that, as a federal judge, he ruled to protect the rights of Chinese ­immigrants, as if this negated his pro-slavery, anti-black views. We would argue that doing his job is not necessarily indicative of his belief in equal rights — especially as the historical record indicates his seeming transformation was nothing more than a political move to prevent rule by mob politics, not a miraculous moral discovery about social equality.

To be clear, Deady never repudiated his stance on slavery or blacks.

Furthermore, what the arguments for retaining racist names on historical buildings do not recognize is that those names continue to honor Oregon’s white supremacist legacy. To move forward, the UO needs to start acknowledging its racist history and take concrete action to remedy its part in perpetuating racial inequity. How can a university hope to recruit a diverse faculty and student ­population if it does not address its own institutionalized racism?

12/13/2015: James Mooney, UO Law Professor Emeritus, has an excellent op-ed in the RG, here:

… At statehood, President James Buchanan appointed Deady to serve as our state’s first and only federal district judge, a position he retained until his death in 1893. He issued many important rulings during that formative era of American law, including a sizable number protecting workers, seamen, consumers and others among the less fortunate.

Most relevant for current purposes, perhaps, was a remarkable series of decisions Judge Deady wrote between 1876 and 1892 in which he emerged as an outspoken champion of immigrant Chinese rights and sensibilities. Those decisions were, without question, an uncommonly memorable instance of federal judicial intervention against 19th century American racism.

… For example, in 1879 he declared invalid — as violating a recent treaty with China and hence the federal constitution’s supremacy clause — a series of state and local prohibitions against employing Chinese on public works. In addition, Judge Deady: declared invalid a Portland ordinance directed against Chinese gambling activities; overturned another ordinance purporting to “regulate” Chinese laundries; in 1886, in a strongly worded decision accusing the white majority of hypocrisy, struck down an ordinance prohibiting opium smoking.

Screen Shot 2015-12-04 at 11.54.16 AM

12/4/215: The RG’ Diane Dietz has more on the debate, here, and on the general issues regarding Black students and faculty at UO, here:

University of Oregon alumnus Scott Bartlett pleaded the case of 19th-century judge and UO founder Matthew Deady at a UO Board of Trustees quarterly meeting on Thursday.

… Bartlett, a longtime Eugene resident and civic activist, told the UO board that he’s not averse to renaming a civic asset. In 2003, he noted, he participated in the drive to rename Centennial Boulevard, which runs between Eugene and Springfield, to honor civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

… “Deady’s life was not exemplary in the early stages, with regard to racist and backward views,” Bartlett said. “But, just as we want our students to transform, he transformed.”

Deady became the first federal judge in Oregon, and in more than three decades on the bench made key decisions upholding the rights of the state’s Chinese population.

“He fought like hell against the harassment and brutalizing of Chinese immigrants, who were the largest minority then, and were in danger of being massacred in the (work) camps,” Bartlett said.

… Schill also announced that he’s appointed Yvette Alex-Assensoh, the UO’s vice president for equity and inclusion, to lead the university’s response to a dozen demands that black students presented to the university last month.

… Trustees later pushed administrators to hire more black faculty and increase the number of black students on campus. Currently, about 1 percent of the UO’s faculty and 2 percent of its students are black.

“One percent doesn’t even represent (the size of the black population) we have here in Oregon,” trustee Ann Curry noted. “We should be at 12 percent African-American professors and students — or at least moving in that direction.”

I have to say that the level of knowledge shown by the trustees regarding the numbers of available black PhD’s, academic hiring, student recruitment, etc. was not high. It’s too bad they don’t have a faculty member on the board with some expertise and willingness to speak on these issues. Susan Gary (Law) just doesn’t cut it.

11/23/2015: Mark Baker of the RG on Minoru Yasui’s Medal of Freedom:

… The key date in Minoru Yasui’s life was March 28, 1942. It came 111 days after the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor.

Yasui spent hours on Portland’s streets that night, violating the first stipulation of Executive Order 9066, a curfew that forbid those of Japanese ancestry from being anywhere outside a five-mile radius of their homes at any time, or outside at all between 8 p.m. and 8 a.m.

Then a 25-year-old attorney, he could not persuade the one officer he encountered to arrest him and so instead turned himself in at the Police Department and spent two nights in jail.

He would be housed that summer of ’42 at the Portland Assembly Center, once a livestock pavilion, with 3,000 other Japanese-Americans, before being sent to an Idaho internment camp.

He was returned to Portland in November, where a U.S. District Court judge ruled that his curfew violation was unconstitutional, according to his life history on the tribute project website. But in a bizarre twist, the judge ruled that since Yasui had worked for the Japanese Consulate in Chicago in 1940-41, he had effectively renounced his U.S. citizenship and thus disobeyed a lawful regulation governing enemy aliens.

He was sentenced to a year in jail and fined $5,000.

In 1943, the U.S. Supreme Court heard his case and reversed the lower court on both counts, saying the curfew violation applied to U.S. citizens due to “wartime necessity” but that Yasui’s work for the Japanese Consulate did not abolish his U.S. citizenship.

He would spend the rest of his life appealing the conviction. …

11/20/2015:

Screen Shot 2015-11-19 at 9.20.30 PM

Deady Hall was the first building on the UO campus, completed in 1876. Originally just called “the building”, in 1893 it was named after Judge Matthew Deady, the first president of the UO Board, and the man who put the notorious black exclusion language in Oregon’s first constitution.

The obvious alternative candidate is Minoru Yasui, a UO Law grad and posthumous recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. More on this amazing man here.

Screen Shot 2015-11-19 at 9.21.43 PM

UO Law Professor Ralph Mooney has an excellent history of the evolution of Judge Deady’s racist views and legal decisions, here. It’s not as simple as it seems. By the 1890’s, as a federal judge, he was a strong defender of the rights of Chinese immigrants. Read it all, here:

Screen Shot 2015-11-20 at 8.52.23 AM

Comments welcome.

Full UO BOT meeting – March 4 – liveblog

Update:

Diane Dietz reports that the Trustees voted 11-3 to raise tuition – here:

… The trustees voted 11-3 in favor of Schill’s proposal for a higher-level of tuition. The students stood, yelled and stomped out of the room.

Trustees Willcox, Ann Curry and student trustee William Paustain voted against the higher-level tuition increase.

Curry said that the rising cost of retirement and medical coverage for university faculty and staff drove the need for the larger increase — and placing those costs on students backs is “not right.”

“It’s fundamentally unethical. I would go as far as to say immoral,” Curry said.

After the vote, Paustain joined the students in the noisy walkout. After last year’s tuition increase of 3.7 percent, the students shut down the trustees meeting.

She also has a report on BOT Chair Chuck Lillis’s anti-tenure comments, here:

Screen Shot 2016-03-04 at 3.03.50 PM

Meeting of the Board — March 4, 2016 [Materials] Live stream here

10:00 am (other times approximate) – Convene Public Meeting – Call to order, roll call, verification of quorum – Opening remarks   – Approval of December 2015 and February 2016 minutes, and March 2015 Presidential Factors Committee minutes (Action) –

Public comment Those wishing to provide comment must sign up advance and review the public comment guidelines either online (http://trustees.uoregon.edu/meetings) or at the check‐in table at the meeting.

The UO Board of Trustees is the only one I’ve ever heard of that doesn’t allow for a regular report from the Senate President, followed by some Q&A with the board. Weird.

The current Senate President, Randy Sullivan (Chemistry) has submitted written remarks to the board anyway. I’ll post them when I find them.

Chair Lillis opens the meeting. Will start with public comment on Deady, then tuition. In the past Lillis has been actively hostile to public comment, he’s mellowed considerably. 90 secs per speaker.

Theodora Tho Thompson, SEIU classified union president: Comments on new strategic excellence framework.

Public Comment on renaming Deady Hall:

Professor Emeritus Ed Coleman speaks in opposition to the renaming of Deady Hall, noting that Deady not only repudiated his early racism, he became a strong supporter of black suffrage, women’s suffrage, the rights of Chinese immigrants, workers, etc. in a lifetime of consistent work as a federal judge. “It would be a disgrace to remove his name from Deady Hall.”

Jerry Rust,’65. Deady contributed money to support women’s suffrage. Was a friend of Chief Joseph. Hired blacks. He was a supporter of diversity and, financially, his contributions saved the university.

Scott Bartlett, alumnus: Heartfelt remarks opposing Deady’s racism and reiterating his later redemption.

Public Comment on Divestment:

Students Emma and Amber (sorry, missed last names): For fossil fuel divestment – argues this is consistent with UO’s claims on sustainability. Emma notes that President Schill reports the UO Foundation now has only $4M invested in fossil fuel stocks. Too bad Jay Namyet didn’t get out when the students first started arguing for this:

Screen Shot 2016-02-16 at 1.59.05 PM

 

Comments on tuition increases:

[Note: For more details on the increases, and Schill’s plan to reduce the cost of UO by helping them graduate in 4 years instead of the increasing common 5: http://uomatters.com/2016/02/one-extra-year-of-college-costs-students-more-than-a-100-tuition-increase-would.html

Jimmy Murray (libraries): Reports on information he has collected about student opposition to tuition increases, as a supervisor of student workers in the library.

Shawna Meecham (GTFF president) speaks in opposition.

Amber Potratz, student, speaks in opposition. Learning disabilities can only take 12 credits, first in family, tuition is already too high.

Chandler (missed name): Couldn’t be happier with Ducks or his professors. Worried about student debt. Not saying this board is responsible, but asks board to do their part to combat student-debt crisis.

Student (missed name): Argues that increased tuition will make it more difficult to meet diversity goals.

Helena Schlegel – the student Trustee that Lillis got to leave the Board: Announces that ASUO supports divestment, renaming, Supports Kurt Wilcox’s proposal to limit tuition increase to 3.5%. Not asking for a tuition freeze – we understand the UO’s financial situation. But remember what it was like to be a student – even $90 is a lot of money.

Shawn Stevenson, undergrad. Let’s compromise – 4.7% is just too large. [Shawn’s an econ major, in case you didn’t guess ;)] Argues that UO can find the $2.7M. [Easy: cut baseball, make the cash rich athletic department pay for the $2.4M Jock Box tuition, etc.] Stevenson goes on to argue that the state is not giving UO money in part because the legislators don’t believe UO when they say they will use state money to provide affordable education.

[There’s a lot of emotion from some student and staff commenters. I’m surprised at how little recognition there is of UO programs like Pathways, diversity scholarships, etc. No one has mentioned Schill’s plan to accelerate completion to reduce the opportunity cost of college – which far exceeds the tuition increases. This would all be more interesting with some back and forth from the board. They’re getting a lot of very serious thoughtful comments from students, it’s odd that the board just sits there making sympathetic faces instead of getting into the back and forth.]

And then the penultimate speaker goes off the rails with a rant. Oh well.

The last one (missed name) reads comments collected from students opposing increase. Says she’s got 30 pages. What is the point of this? She’s shutting off discussion with this.

Ann Curry tries to save the day by suggesting that this can be put into the record.

Nope, she goes on and on. The other students tell her she’s made her point, time to sit down. She does.

1. AY2016‐17 Tuition and Fees (Action), President Michael Schill, Vice President for Finance and Administration/CFO Jamie Moffitt and Vice Provost for Budget and Planning Brad Shelton

Break 1b. Additional Resolutions from Committee ‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: Authorization for Bond Issuance (pending March 3 committee action)

Lillis: Complicated, difficult, we’ve considered all the ins and outs.

Schill: I’ve listened to everyone, but my recommendation stands. Increase tuition by $405 per year.for the average in-state student. This is necessary because we must invest in the university in order to deliver an excellent education. I wish it weren’t so, but because of low state support we need to fund UO with tuition.

[Wasn’t one of the arguments for an independent board that there would be $2B in philanthropy to augment state funding? How’s that going?]

VPFA Jamie Moffitt: We had lots of public meetings, 3 forums, got feedback, then ignored it all. We’re unwilling to go after the bloated athletic budget and their hidden subsidies, because the jocks and boosters scare us. So we’re hitting up the students. And please don’t ask me about the $10M UO undergrads are now paying to prop up my husband’s law school. Any other questions?

VPB Brad Shelton: Info starts on page 68 of pdf here. Unfortunately this info was not part of the original board materials, here. This is too bad, it might have led to better public comments, or not.

Screen Shot 2016-03-04 at 11.27.21 AM Screen Shot 2016-03-04 at 11.27.34 AM

Screen Shot 2016-03-04 at 11.27.42 AM

VPFA Moffitt then explains why UO is using millions from the “education and general fund” to pay for the jock box tutoring and Knight Arena land. Just kidding. It’s all about the increasing cost of salaries and benefits:

Screen Shot 2016-03-04 at 11.40.52 AM

Peter Bragdon mentions that not only does the legislature not fund UO much, they also impose unfunded mandates such as requiring UO employees to stay in the state health insurance pool ($25M a year, if I recall) plus PERS. They’ve raised the minimum wages, which benefits many student workers e.g. in the library, but UO will have to fund all that.

[Sorry, I have to go. Please post comments if you are here or watching.]

2. President’s Report and Strategic Framework Overview, President Michael Schill

Nothing says mediocre like saying EXCELLENCE. So Schill won’t say this word.

3. Presidential Goals and Evaluation (Action), Chair Chuck Lillis and Vice Chair Ginevra Ralph

Snoozer. Schill’s doing his job plus all the jobs the previous 5 presidents and interims were supposed to be doing but didn’t.

4. Capital Campaign and University Advancement Update, Vice President for Advancement Mike Andreasen

Andreasen isn’t showing much. I wonder why not? All the donations are going to the Jocks?

5. University of Oregon Foundation Overview, University of Oregon Foundation President and CEO Paul Weinhold

Basic due diligence.

I’m sure the Board will ask Weinhold some tough questions about the decline in transparency since he took over the Foundation, and his loss exposure for the various IAAF track championships.

6. Information Technology Strategic Planning, Provost and Senior Vice President Scott Coltrane, Vice President for Finance and Administration/CFO Jamie Moffitt, Interim Vice President for Research Brad Shelton and Assistant Vice President and Chief of Staff to the Provost Melanie Muenzer

Yikes.

Things that should be on the BOT agenda but aren’t (suggestions welcome).

 

Background:

The last time the UO Board of Trustees voted to increase tuition UO’s Public Records Office tried to charge $474.28 for public records explaining the increase:

Dear Mr. Harbaugh:

The University of Oregon has received your public records request for “any documents provided to the Tuition and Feed Advisory Board, from 7/1/2013 to the present”, on 11/04/2014, attached. The office has at least some documents responsive to your request. By this email, the office is providing you with an estimate to respond to your requests.

The office estimates the actual cost of responding to your request to be $474.28. Upon receipt of a check made payable to the University of Oregon for that amount, the office will proceed to locate, copy, and provide the records you have requested that are not exempt from disclosure. Your check may be sent to the attention of Office of Public Records, 6207 University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403-6207.

The university has received your request for a fee waiver for these records. The decision to waive or reduce fees is discretionary with the public body. After considering your request, the office does not consider that the totality of the circumstances you presented meets the standard for a fee waiver.

… Thank you for contacting us with your request.

Sincerely,

Lisa Thornton
Office of Public Records
University of Oregon
Office of the President

Really? No public interest in understanding why a public university is increasing tuition? A few months later the board met to approve the increase. The students came out in mass to protest. The very high participation by the international students was striking. Full post here. The signs called  out the administrators and coaches for their bloated salaries:

Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 2.05.57 PM

BOT chair Chuck Lillis just couldn’t stomach the fact that the UO Student Board Member, Helena Schlegel, then proposed a slightly smaller increase. Lillis drove Schlegel off the board and had the Governor replace her with a new student trustee, picked by the board instead of by student government. What a horrible precedent.

Off course there are good reasons to increase tuition. The basic model is to raise tuition and raise the discounts for low income students. And, in fact, UO is proposing to keep tuition for in-state Pathways students at $0. This is really not that hard to explain to people. Every university does it – and there’s no reason to hide it.

UO Board of Trustees committee meetings March 3, with live-blog.

Diane Dietz is here, so expect some good RG reporting. I’ll blog what I can.

9AM: Finance and Facilities Committee — March 3, 2016 [Materials]

1PM: Academic and Student Affairs Committee — March 3, 2016 [Materials] (Page way down).

Tomorrow: Meeting of the Board — March 4, 2016 [Materials]

FFC: 

Convene – Call to order and roll call – Approval of December 2015 FFC minutes (Action) – Public comment  

No public comments –

1. Quarterly Treasury Report, Director of Treasury Operations Karen Levear

All is well, no questions.

2. Bond Issuance Authorization, Vice President for Finance and Administration/CFO Jamie Moffitt and Director of Treasury Operations Karen Levear

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 9.12.35 AM

Ms Lavear is great. Asserts economists don’t know what will happen to rates – true enough! $50M 30 year debt, to pay for …

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 9.15.13 AM

Well, honestly this is a little vague, but sounds very plausible. I woder how much will go to the Jocks?

If you want more info on UO’s basic financial position, check out the report from AAUP forensic accountant Howard Bunsis, here. Plenty of water in the well, given the years of drought.

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 9.29.38 AM

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 9.23.04 AM Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 9.22.39 AM

3. Quarterly Financial Report and Update on State Budget Workgroup, Vice President for Finance and Administration/CFO Jamie Moffitt

Jamie gives her usual presentation: We’re “run-rate even” but face future challenges from increasing wages to the faculty peons and PERS.

Again Bunsis has much more interesting info, here. The faculty union has had Bunsis out a few times to explain the UO budget – maybe the board should invite him next time. Bunsis:

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 9.33.26 AM

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 9.35.44 AM Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 9.35.31 AM

Kurt Wilcox asks where the $20M in reserves spent last year went. Moffitt says to recognize increased future PERS liabilities, and to labor and benefit costs.

And here’s a Bunsis graph that you will never see the UO administration put up in a meeting:

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 9.42.16 AM

4. Framework Vision Project Overview and Capital Planning Update, Consultant Robert Sabbatini AICP FASLA and Vice President for Finance and Administration/CFO Jamie Moffitt

Lots of consultants, pretty presentation, totally illegible even on the screens.

Current UO land could support $34K students. (Undergrads? PhD students with associated labs?)

Here’s the meat – a new classroom/office building, and a new science lab building:

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 10.14.02 AM Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 10.13.49 AM

Plus a lot of parking garages. Sabbatini has a plan for removing Collier House. Yippee!

The faculty member on the board, Susan Gary, who is always careful to explain that she doesn’t really speak as a faculty member, goes off for a while on the fact that Sabbatini hadn’t looked at how expansion would impact the local neighborhood, by increasing the number of student who “frolic” at night, and drive down property values. Is she speaking as a property owner?

1:00PM Academic and Student Affairs Committee. Materials here.

Board of Trustees of the University of Oregon Academic and Student Affairs Committee   Public Meeting 1:00 pm – March 3, 2016 Ford Alumni Center, Giustina Ballroom    Convene – Call to order and roll call –

Introductory comments and agenda review –

Approval of December 2015 ASAC minutes (Action)   – Public comment

1. Update on Vice President for Research and Dean Searches, Provost and Senior Vice President Scott Coltrane

Links here.

Vice President for Research and Innovation – Finalists campus visit schedule and information

Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences

Dean of the Lundquist College of Business

Dean of the School of Architecture and Allied Arts

Dean of the School of Journalism and Communication

Coltrane says the usual things. Using search firms, talks, lots of Dean finalists will be out in early April

2. Program Development and Approval (Action), Provost and Senior Vice President Scott Coltrane and Assistant Vice Provost Ron Bramhall

– Approval for New Master’s Degree in Sports Product Design  

Ron Bramhall makes the pitch. Details here.

Allyn Ford asks what we’re going to trim to pay for this. What a great question. Read more on the dubious funding and Lillis’s past public statements here. Coltrane evades.

Ann Curry follows up about how this will be funded. Chuck Lillis doesn’t look like he likes this question. Coltrane evades.

– Approval for New Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science in Arts Management

The Arts Management major is controversial given VPAA Blandy’s use of online AAD 250-252 courses to take gen ed credits away from CAS humanities and finance AAA. These generally online courses have no proctored exams and give as many as 2/3 of their students A’s:

Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 8.29.49 PM

Read more about Blandy’s $1M student credit hour heist here:

Screen Shot 2014-01-31 at 11.01.45 PM

He’s gotten even bolder:

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 1.30.46 PM

Isn’t this the sort of thing that Trustee Susan Gary (Law) should be paying attention too?

She’s not. no questions from Gary, everything passes unanimously. Maybe she’s worried people might start asking about law’s $10M deal.

3. Resource Alignment Initiative, President Michael Schill, Provost and Senior Vice President Scott Coltrane, and Interim Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Andrew Marcus

Schill: Every unit is being asked to make a 2% cut, to contribute to our larger academic strategic objectives. 3% next year.

Does “every unit” include athletics? Make Rob Mullens start paying the $2.4M Jock Box costs? Of course not. Perhaps one of the trustees will ask? Of course not.

Coltrane: We’re using the savings to grow the tenure track faculty. Some CoE hires, some cluster hire offers going out.

Marcus does a very good job with the nuts and bolts, sorry I’ve heard this before and won’t blog much.

He also gives a very nice shout-out to the faculty union. Careful to say they don’t endorse this, but credits them with helping him mitigate the impact – at least to some extent.

Then puts up this figure:

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 2.01.21 PM

Which is useful, but note that the base for NTTF is about 100 – so all that green growth is not very much in numbers. But check this:

Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 2.04.22 PM

Marcus’s predecessors spent all the science start up money on other things. Like the $2.4M a year for the Jock Box. Or the $467,538 a year the academic side is still paying Rob Mullens for the right to use Mac Court for academic purposes:

Painful cuts. If Coltrane had had the guts to make tough choices as CAS Dean, Marcus would have been in much better place.

Notes that CAS has actually authorized 13 new career-track NTTF hires.

Curry: Why the 2012 drop in credit hours per students in Humanities?

Marcus: Children of the recession – all wanted to go to business school.

Curry: What about UO taking core classes at other universities to save money?

Marcus: We’ve heard that, don’t have good data yet.

Coltrane: We’re trying to figure this out. Students are *not* taking enough UO credits. [Sorry, *not* was missing in original.]

Curry: Could it be cost per credit?

Schill nods.

Lillis: “There’s an issue with tenure protecting some non-productive faculty”.

Schill: As a tenured professor, let me answer that. I’m a defender of tenure. Important for academic freedom. Bedrock of the universities ability to encourage faculty to ask unpopular questions. Protects faculty from retaliation.

Schill goes on: “Faculty do this job, often at financial cost, because they love it.”

Lillis: “I agree with everything Mike said.”

Schill asks Coltrane to explain the evaluation / promotion / referee incentives UO uses.

Rudy Chapas: It’s easy to see how hard these cuts have been for Marcus – you can see it on his face. The board knows this was necessary and thanks you.

Curry: Pretty clear that business, journalism, maybe AAA have a strong student advising system. I understand that is not true of the 40+ CAS departments. Is this fixable?

[Me: I went through 5 or so majors. Very bad advising. Not that I would have listened. I learned a lot dropping courses. Students try things, change their minds, try something new, it’s great.]

Coltrane: We got some state money for improving advising, Lisa Freinkel is in charge.

Susan Gary (Law) goes back to the tenure thing, says something about push for stronger tenure standards from Coltrane? Hard to hear her, sorry.

Paustian: Back to advising, problem with students filling up courses they don’t really need.

Kurt Wilcox: Steps in and does Susan Gary’s job for her. Not advocating for the faculty, but explaining to the trustees that there are legitimate questions about how the realignment is being handled in terms of timing, course coverage. Does Gary not know this? Is she afraid to explain it? Probably a bit of both.

Ginevra Ralph: Would like to hear more about the history of the budget model. Can we have a tutoring session on that? [She should talk to former CA Joe Stone or former CAS finance dean Marianne Nicols].

4. University Libraries, Dean of Libraries Adriene Lim Meeting Adjourns Following adjournment, trustees will do a site visit of the Knight Library with Dean of Libraries Adriene Lim.

Reads from slides. Come on.

Very proud of the university archives: Le Guin, Kesey, that zip drive she told Doug Park that Harbaugh had stolen, …

Banner year for fundraising. First unit to reach our $36M target. Still need science library etc.

Does a good job answering questions.

Meeting adjourns for a visit to the library.

Board holds emergency session, gives jocks what they want when they want it

2/18/2016: There are some good people on the UO board. You know they’re hoping the day will come when they can announce they’ve done something important for UO’s academic side. But that day is not today. Today Diane Dietz has yet another story on the effort and expense that UO’s leaders are willing to lavish on the jocks, here.

2/14/2016: What would Scalia say about using eminent domain for IAAF championships?

The UO Board of Trustees will attempt to use eminent domain to condemn a cell phone tower that’s in the way of the plan to tart-up Hayward Field for the 2021 IAAF Championships. They’ve called an emergency meeting for February 18th: http://trustees.uoregon.edu/sites/trustees2.uoregon.edu/files/meeting_agenda_and_materials_021816_updated.pdf

“The UO is at a point in time where further delay would cause significant delay in the overarching project, the completion of which is currently timed for events next spring critical to the local economy.”

Whereas, the University of Oregon (“University”) desires to expand certain campus facilities, including Hayward Field, to improve the University’s ability to provide educational and athletic opportunities for its students; to support the University’s ability to host significant state, national, and international events that promote the University and it students; to bring economic opportunities and benefits to the community and the State of Oregon; and to enhance spectating and training (“Project”); …

NOW, THEREFORE, the Board hereby:

1. RESOLVES that acquiring SBA 2012 TC Assets, LLC’s (“SBA”), its subtenants’, and any other parties’ interests in a lease of real property located at the southwest corner of Hayward Field is necessary and required to complete the Project.  The particular interests that are necessary to the Project, and that the University will acquire, are specifically described in the attached Exhibit A (“Property”), which is incorporated herein by reference as if fully set forth herein;

2. FURTHER RESOLVES that the Project is necessary for the public interest, and has been planned, designed, located and will be constructed in a manner that will be the most compatible with the greatest public good and the least injury to private parties; …

Paul Weinhold’s UO Foundation will, of course, pay for the expenses associated with the latest athletic distraction from UO’s academic mission:

Screen Shot 2016-02-12 at 12.29.33 PM

It appears UO had already proposed substantial concessions – I wonder if the foundation was going to cover those too, and out of which pot of money?:

Ground lease amendment and construction agreement are still not executed.   An amendment to the existing ground lease is needed to reflect the new location and any modified terms agreed upon as a result of this relocation.  Also needed is a construction agreement for the new site.  Thus, the university engaged SBA’s counsel in mid‐October to accomplish both.   Early on, the UO agreed to amend the lease to include the following provisions, which are favorable to SBA: The new tower would be taller and larger (approximately 160 feet tall and 5 feet in diameter), not only to adjust for differences in elevation and clearance at the new site, but also to accommodate an additional tenant provider; the lease would be extended for 10 additional years; and, SBA would receive a 50% reduction in rent for five years if the current tower is vacated by August 1, 2016.

Two of the four emergency or unscheduled meetings of the UO Board or committees have revolved around sports:

August 2014: Buy out Mike Gottfredson: http://trustees.uoregon.edu/sites/trustees2.uoregon.edu/files/minutes_bot_aug2014_approved.pdf

February 2015: Give emergency raises to Athletic Director Rob Mullens and Football Coach Mark Helfrich: http://trustees.uoregon.edu/sites/trustees2.uoregon.edu/files/eacagendameetingmaterial_020515.pdf

April 2015: Appoint Michael Schill as President: http://trustees.uoregon.edu/sites/trustees2.uoregon.edu/files/minutes_-_bot_-_april2015_-_final.pdf

One extra year of college costs students more than a 100% tuition increase

Updated with a letter in the ODE from a variety of student groups raising questions about the administration’s seriousness in consulting them about the tuition increases, here:

University of Oregon campus community,

On Jan. 4, a new term began for most students at the UO, and with that began another round of weekly talks about tuition with the Tuition & Fees Advisory Board. This board is comprised primarily of administrators and faculty, with two students appointed by students and two students appointed by the administration. At the start of the term, guaranteed tuition was off the table for 2016-2017, and administrators presented an increase of 4.7 percent for in-state students and 4.46 percent for out-of-state students. Over the course of the year, if a student were to take an average of 15 credits per term — the required amount for graduation in four years — than this would amount to an increase of about $484 for in-state students and $1,428 for out-of state students per year. Factor in the duration of loan payment and interest rates, and students will be paying this increase back for many years to come.

The student representatives, including the ASUO President Helena Schlegel, opposed this increase and looked forward to negotiating ways to adjust the budget in order to reduce the proposed tuition and fee increases. During the week of Jan. 25, the student participants left the meeting a few minutes early in order to make it to class. The rest of the group came to a consensus about the 4.7 percent increase after the student representatives left.

Both student-nominated representatives were informed on Monday, Feb. 1 that this decision had been made, as well as that all remaining TFAB meetings for the year would be canceled as they were no longer deemed necessary. …

2/7/2016: In response to popular demand I’m posting some info about the tuition increase debate.

The feds make UO post this cost of attendance information:

Screen Shot 2016-02-07 at 8.34.43 PM

But these numbers ignore the biggest component of college costs: the wages students give up by not working. Even for the lowest earning group of college majors – Humanities – the median starting salary was $36,237 last year, according to the NACE:

Screen Shot 2016-02-07 at 8.47.40 PM

So when a student takes 5 instead of 4 years to graduate, it costs them more than would a 100% increase in UO’s out-of-state tuition, or a 300% increase in in-state tuition.

This is the argument Mike Schill made to the Eugene City Club on Friday: let’s make UO cheaper by getting students graduated more quickly, rather than fighting over a 4.7% tuition increase. KVAL has video, here:

Screen Shot 2016-02-07 at 9.04.41 PM

Last year UO’s students shut down the Trustees meeting with a demonstration over tuition increases. Lillis and Coltrane looked like deer in the headlights. But this year we’ve got a President who is talking sense.

Will the students listen, or demonstrate and shut down the March 3-4 Trustee’s meeting too? Here’s the Daily Emerald’s report, more here. It turns out our students are talking sense too:

Schlegel demanded “The Three Asks,” including a 3.5 percent tuition increase for both resident and non-resident students, University’s support for the corporate tax measure and funding for the Oregon Opportunity Grant.

The “corporate tax measure” is the Better Oregon ballot initiative for a 2.5% tax on corporate sales, which would apparently increase state tax revenue by 25%. The legislature is considering a watered down version, which would still lead to significant increases in state revenue and the likelihood of more state higher education funding.

So surely this legislation is a priority for the UO Board of Trustees? Nope, not even on their list. The only tax increase that UO’s Board of Trustees want is a 1 percentage point increase in the hotel tax, to subsidize a track meet:

Screen Shot 2016-01-31 at 10.17.11 PM

So it should be an interesting Board meeting.

Dec 3 UO Board meeting live-blog

Some highlights so far:

UO has a lobbying effort underway to support Track Town’s efforts to get ~$30M in state money for the scandal-ridden 2021 IAAF track championships. To put this in perspective, UO gets about $60M a year from the state for academics. The claim is made that this $30M will not dilute efforts to increase state funding for UO’s academic efforts. I don’t believe it.

Screen Shot 2015-12-03 at 11.45.25 AM

The NYT is now on the IAAF corruption problems, with a long story here:

In that same vein, the I.A.A.F. ethics committee revealed on Monday that Isaiah Kiplagat, the president of Athletics Kenya, had been accused of receiving two motor vehicles as a gift from the Qatar Association of Athletics Federation in 2014 and 2015. David Okeyo, vice president of Athletics Kenya and an I.A.A.F. Council member, and Joseph Kinyua, the former treasurer of Athletics Kenya and Kenya’s team leader at the 2015 world championships in Beijing, were also suspended.

Doha, Qatar, successfully bid for the 2019 world track and field championships in November 2014. The I.A.A.F. ethics committee statement, which made no correlation between the alleged gift and the 2019 bidding process, did not make clear whether the vehicles in question had been given to Kiplagat personally or to the Kenyan federation.

… It also would have been more convincing if Sebastian Coe, the new president of the I.A.A.F., had decided to end his long-term paid association with Nike before public pressure turned into an outcry. But at least Coe finally acted last week to announce the end an apparent conflict of interest that was apparent to everyone but him.

… There is also the issue of the 2021 World Championships, awarded to Eugene, Ore., without formal bidding in April, with Diack the driving force behind the unusual approach.

There were strong arguments for Eugene, a rare track hotbed in the United States, which has never staged a world outdoor championships despite being the sport’s leading nation. Eugene had lost to Doha in the bidding for 2019.

But with Diack’s credibility at an all-time low and with Nike headquarters in nearby Beaverton, Ore., the I.A.A.F. and the bidding committee are, at best, in another awkward position, even if TrackTown officials in Eugene have said that Nike played no formal role in the process and that the bid adhered to all legal and ethical norms.

12/3/2015: For the Dec 2 committee meetings, go here, Diane Dietz has a story here, focusing on the rape prevention discussion.

The RG’s Diane Dietz has a good prequel, here:

A proposal to offer students guaranteed tuition for four years, a plan for upgrading residence halls and a roundtable discussion on race relations are on the agenda when the University of Oregon Board of Trustees meets Wednesday and Thursday in Eugene.

… The UO appears to be ready to meet its pledge to build or extensively renovate three residence halls before the 2021 World Championship track event comes to campus.

… In the wake of campus protests — and concerted efforts to hash out solutions — the UO Board will sit down Thursday with students, invited by UO President Michael Schill, to share their experiences at the UO and talk about current issues.

The UO Board is coming under increased pressure from the HECC, as explained here. Presumably there will be some amendments to SB 270 in the 2017 session to try and get more transparency and make the boards more responsive.

Live Blog disclaimer: My thoughts on what I think people said, meant, should have said, or should have meant. Noting is a quote unless in quotes.

Meeting of the Board — December 3, 2015 [Materials]

FORD ALUMNI CENTER, GIUSTINA BALLROOM (UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED)
8:00 am (other times approximate) – Convene Public Meeting

1. Roundtable Discussions with Students on Race‐Related Issues (Bean, East Conference Room). President Schill has invited a group of students, in coordination from staff in CMAE, to participate in small group conversations about their experiences at the UO and current issues and events.

Reports from the Trustees are that these conversations went well and were informative for the board.

Trustee Allyn Ford gives thanks to UO and particularly Andre LeDuc  for their support in the aftermath of the Umpqua CC shooting, which he thinks should serve as a model for pooling state resources in other disaster situation.

3. Public Comment: Those wishing to provide comment must sign up advance and review the public comment guidelines either online (http://trustees.uoregon.edu/meetings) or at the check‐in table at the meeting.

James West (student) gives a cogent explanation of the financial risks to the university of the guaranteed tuition plan. Also concerned about the initial jump in tuition required by the plan, which he pegs at 10-15%, and thinks will discourage enrollment.

Shawn Stevenson (student). I’m guessing Shawn is an econ major given how logical his presentation is.  He is on the TFAB committee and doesn’t see how the numbers pencil out. He explains the particular disadvantage this creates for students coming in with AP credits. Also the notch effect, and how it will mean that the incentive for 4 year graduation is smaller than expected. Argues that this plan is all show, when what UO really needs is a board working on the substantive problems. Lillis asks Moffitt if she is really having good communication with the students, given the informed opposition the students are providing. Moffitt says yes. Stevenson argues for waiting, and making it voluntary.

Why is the board pushing this? Partly because Roger Thompson thinks it will be a good marketing gimmick, and partly because the Board freaked out over last year’s tuition demonstration and realizes that with the guarantee, current students will have less incentive to protest increases, since they will only fall on students who have not yet enrolled.

Joe Lowndes (Poli Sci professor, speaking for faculty union). Brief statement on how union is working for academic excellence.

Helena Schlegel (Econ student, ASUO President, and former BOT student member until she quit after Lillis cracked down on dissent.) Give the ASUO report. Concerned about tuition guarantee, ADA access, campus safety in the aftermath of UCC shootings.

Max Burns (student): Low income Oregon resident, working as Resident Assistant in dorms, on ASUO and UO Senate. Concerned about how tuition guarantee and mandatory requirement that freshmen students live in dorms (to be implemented soon). Will raise cost of UO, make us less competitive for Oregon residents in comparison to PSU, OSU. Pathway Oregon does not support transfer students, or pay for living expenses.

Scott Bartlett (alumni): He worked on the successful effort to rename Centennial after Martin Luther King. Concerned about the effort to rename Deady Hall. Doesn’t deny Deady’s racist failings, but goes through the history of all the good that he did, including writing prohibitions for race and religious discrimination into the UO charter, and his support for Chinese immigrants when doing so was a dangerous thing to do. Very effective speech, trustees listening carefully.

4.   President’s Report

Talks about efforts to hire more faculty. Four Dean searches underway plus VP for Research. Airport interviews in February, it will be a busy spring. Schill’s opportunity to rebuild UO’s academic leadership.

Affordability and access: Maybe tuition guarantee proposal for March meeting. UO has put the new legislative money into increasing access for low income Oregonians, will go back and ask for more. Oregon Commitment plan will include predictive analytics to identify struggling students, advisors to help them, money to help them complete and graduate. All ruled over by a retention czar.

Hayward Field tart-up is on schedule. Gives shout out to football team, but avoids saying “Go Ducks”.

Concerned about fraternities and sororities. Has a consulting report coming. Wants to support them while getting some control and minimizing the risks.

Campus needs diversity of all kinds, because we learn from different people and ideas. Issues facing Black students are particularly difficult, and he is engaged with the students, listening, engaged on working on solutions. (He’s pointedly calling the student’s demands “requests”). Has set up a committee to examine process for de-naming buildings and looking at Deady and Dunn. Chaired by Charise Cheney from Ethnic Studies, will include alumni. Impressed by the students he’s been meeting with.

Talks about sexual violence, watched the Hunting Ground, acknowledges UO’s problems. Mentions the climate surveys and the disturbingly high rates of non-consensual contact, rape. Particularly disturbed by the large number of students who report they don’t trust UO to deal with rape and assault. (After the Doug Park / Shelly Kerr counseling records seizure, who would?)

As the 160over90 branding effort comes to a merciful end, we’ll be trying some other ways to try and compensate for the influence of Duck athletics on people’s perception of what UO is really about.

Funding campaign moving along, but while there’s plenty more athletic pork in the pipeline, no new big gifts for the academic side to report.

Curry asks about faculty diversity. For those interested in slicing and dicing people by race and ethnicity, Coltrane points to the IR website, here: http://ir.uoregon.edu/sites/ir.uoregon.edu/files/FacultyDemographicsPublicVersion20140724.pdf

5.   Resolutions from Committee

‐‐Seconded Motion from ASAC:  Student conduct code – repeal of outdated IMD and consolidation of policies (pending December 2 committee action)

‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: Repeal of SBHE policy #9 (pending December 2 committee action)

‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: Approval of Bean Hall renovation project (pending December 2 committee action)

‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: Naming of certain university facilities (pending December 2 committee action)

Nothing controversial. Dorm renovations are part of UO’s efforts for the 2021 Track Town proposal.  Passes unanimously.

Break

6. Government Affairs Updates

6.1 State Affairs: AVP for State and Community Affairs Hans Bernard will provide trustees
with an update on state affairs, including an overview of the University of Oregon’s priorities
for the 2016 legislative session.

Hans Bernard is not here? New staffer Libby Batlan gives report. The news here is that UO is saying that it is pushing back against the HECC’s efforts to enforce limits on the UO Board’s power, and that UO has a lobbying effort underway to support Track Town’s efforts to get ~$30M in state money for the 2021 IAAF track championships.

To put this in perspective, UO gets about $60M a year from the state for athletics. The claim is made that this will not dilute efforts to increase state funding for UO’s academic efforts. I don’t believe it.

 Screen Shot 2015-12-03 at 11.30.52 AM

Screen Shot 2015-12-03 at 11.31.04 AM

6.2 Federal Affairs: AVP for Federal Affairs Betsy Boyd will provide an update on federal
government legislation and agency activities relating to higher education and the University
of Oregon.  

Betsy Boyd presents. Talks about federal support for UO and trends. Pell grant money is crucial to Pathway Oregon. Handout shows UO students got $175M in financial aid in 2013-14. $22M in Pell grant money, $30M in federal subsidized student loans, $56M in federal unsubsidized loans, $62M in graduate/professional school loans. Compare that to $7M in state aid and $40M in UO aid (includes tuition discounts, probably also athletic scholarships).

Public Meeting Recessed

12:30 pm Small Group Lunches with Faculty

Public Meeting Reconvenes

7.   Tuition guarantee concept – update, Vice President for Finance and Administration Jamie Moffitt and Vice President for Enrollment Management Roger Thompson

Sorry, I had to miss this.

 

UO Board to meet Dec 2, 3. I’ll do some live blogging.

The RG’s Diane Dietz has a good prequel, here:

A proposal to offer students guaranteed tuition for four years, a plan for upgrading residence halls and a roundtable discussion on race relations are on the agenda when the University of Oregon Board of Trustees meets Wednesday and Thursday in Eugene.

… The UO appears to be ready to meet its pledge to build or extensively renovate three residence halls before the 2021 World Championship track event comes to campus.

… In the wake of campus protests — and concerted efforts to hash out solutions — the UO Board will sit down Thursday with students, invited by UO President Michael Schill, to share their experiences at the UO and talk about current issues.

The UO Board is coming under increased pressure from the HECC, as explained here. Presumably there will be some amendments to SB 270 in the 2017 session to try and get more transparency and make the boards more responsive.

Live Blog disclaimer: My thoughts on what I think people said, meant, should have said, or should have meant. Noting is a quote unless in quotes.

DECEMBER 2 COMMITTEE MEETINGS:

Academic and Student Affairs Committee — December 2, 2015 [Materials]

December 2, 2015 9:00 am: Public Meeting Ford Alumni Center, Room 403

1. Student Conduct Code – repeal of outdated policies (Action), University Secretary Angela Wilhelms

Having seized control of these policies from the faculty under the midnight delegation of authority power-grab, the trustees now realize they don’t understand what they’ve gotten themselves into. It appears no one has read the policies, but they vote unanimously to move these repeals forward to the full board on the advice of Secretary Wilhelms.

2. Sexual Assault Prevention, Education and Awareness Updates, Vice President for Student Life Robin Holmes

Board Secretary Wilhelms and VPFA Holmes didn’t invite anyone from the Senate Committee on Gender and Sexual Based Violence to speak to the board? Not very collegial.

Robin Holmes leads with the mantra “this is a problem at every campus, not just at UO”. (Yes, but only at UO do we sue the survivor, grab her counseling records, and retaliate against the whistleblowers.)

Holmes then wisely turns things over to the sexual assault prevention staff, who do a good job explaining what UO has been doing on the prevention front.

Screen Shot 2015-12-02 at 9.24.55 AM

Frazee does a good job explaining the new “Get Explicit 101” peer program, which they tried out in the residence halls and on the athletes. “This program teaches students what a sexual assault is and how to report it.”

Get Explicit 101 will empower students to be intentional with boundaries, direct with communication, explicit with consent, and engaged as a community member to prevent sexual violence. As Ducks, we cannot simply desire that issues of sexual violence go away—we need to act intentionally and engage explicitly in prevention, which begins with understanding the context of the issue. By participating in these workshops, students contribute to the University of Oregon’s goal for a safer and healthier campus community when it comes to issues of sexual violence.

Special modules for the problematic fraternity and sorority life groups and athletes. Working with the new health class for athletes. (Hmm, is this the AD’s latest FHS 199 scam?)

Ann Curry: Link to alcohol? Frazee starts to explain the research, Holmes interrupts. Curry goes back to Frazee: What % of these assaults are really preventable? Holmes says the 1 in 5 number has not changed in 20 years. (Across campus variation)?.

Will Paustian to Eyster: Where does your research on effectiveness come from? Eyster: We work with UO’s Prevention Science Institute, since this is not rocket science. We work more with men, more so than other universities.

UO is currently trying to hire a new AVP for Sexual Violence Prevention who will presumably also replace the problematic AAEO Director Penny Daugherty.

Chuck Lillis: Are students aware of how to report? Holmes: Not as much as they should be, but reports have more than doubled since all the publicity from the basketball rape allegations.

Leeder: During orientation we have them put the reporting website and number on their phones.

Curry: What can we do about the drinking? Eyster: We’re hiring a second person to work on substance abuse prevention. [Anyone seen research showing that switching from alcohol to pot will reduce sexual assaults, as it has for traffic accidents?]

Lillis: Board should go through the assault and alcohol training, to get more informed.

Will Paustian (student member): As an incoming freshmen, the only education I received was alcohol.edu, which is a joke.

Frazee: the vendor is trying to fix it so students can’t just click through. Frazee: We have multiple points of inoculation, not just the web course. (But Get Explicit is not mandatory?)

Susan Gary speaks: I recently went through the bystander program at the law school. Very effective. Very small student turnout, we’re trying to make it required.

Holmes argues that part of the FSL problem is that the fraternities and sororities are too large to be managed, claims this is part of the reason UO is adding new fraternities and sororities. (So she’s going to then shrink the large ones. Sure she is.)

President Schill: Hard to control the frats, their houses are dry so they rent “party houses” on the side. [True, and let’s not talk about the party buses.]

Ginevra Ralph: I’d be interested to hear from a male member of your staff on how they reach out to the men. [See the comments.]

Lillis to Holmes: Is there adult supervision in the frats? (As is often the case, Holmes has no real answer).

3. Department of International Affairs – overview and discussion, Vice Provost for
International Affairs Dennis Galvan

I’ll go out on a limb and predict that Dennis is not going to be making a big announcement to the board that Gabonese President Ali Bongo has finally delivered the rest of his $15M gift to UO. The initial $5M is pretty much gone, so it’s not clear what will happen to the “Twin Edens” program.

That aside UO seems to be doing a very good job with study abroad, less so with international students, though they are working on it.

Connie Ballmer: What do I tell someone who asks me why there are so many international students at UO, when we should be educating Oregon students? Galvan: Diversity. Good for our students to learn about the rest of the world. [And, of course, we use their money to pay for Oregon students.] Talks about efforts to improve mixing between Chinese and other students.

UO is increasing efforts to recruit grad students from new Indian universities, Brazil, Indonesia.

Study abroad: All kinds of benefits for our students from a *good* study abroad program. UO is well above average for this, and also for getting funding to low income students.  About 60% of this is summer experiences, as Kurt Wilcox points out.

Galvan reports on a study showing benefits for GPA and retention from study abroad – but a few skeptical questions from the board reveal it’s bullshit study that apparently doesn’t even control for all the observables, much less deal with unobserved heterogeneity. Bummer.

Galvan is building an endowment for funds to give more scholarships for study-abroad.

Galvan explains another innovative program – exchange between UO and a historically black college in the south. Great idea.

Under Jim Bean UO was losing money on these programs, but Lorraine Davis cleaned it up and Galvan hopes to make a modest amount from them.

Galvan finishes up by mentioning the Gabon program – so did that money come through? I doubt it.

But wait, there’s more. Program to get Pell eligible students a passport, make it easier for them to travel and think about exchange. And more and more. Very interesting presentation. Committee was full engaged.

4. College & Careers Building – programmatic components, Interim Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Andrew Marcus

Marcus is going to have a tough time convincing me that new offices for CAS administrators should really be such a high priority.

Marcus: It’s going to be a “Jaqua Center for all the students”.

OK, sorry, I’m tuning this out for a while. Marcus is very competent, I’m sure this is all well thought out.

Board seems very happy with it all.

5. Access and Opportunity Initiative, President Michael Schill and Provost Scott Coltrane

President Schill: Emphasis on low tuition is a mistake. Focus should be on scholarships for low income students and increasing completion speed and graduation rates. “Oregon Commitment”: Increase graduate rate by 20% by 2020. More details in the RG story and editorial, links here: http://uomatters.com/2015/11/rgs-diane-dietz-details-schills-oregon-commitment-plan-editors-endorse.html

Trustees very engaged, good questions.

Adjourn at 11:54.

Executive and Audit Committee — December 2, 2015 [Materials12:30 pm: Public Meeting, Ford Alumni Center, Room 403

1. Roles and responsibilities relating to financial integrity, Board Chair Chuck Lillis

The big news here is the board trying to grapple with the sudden resignation of their Chief Internal Auditor, Brenda Muirhead. More on that here:

This is really bad news for trust and transparency at UO. Muirhead was a professional with an impeccable record. Her job was to set up procedures to enhance UO’s minimal internal controls and conduct internal audits. For example, her office confirmed that UO had never done an open affirmative action compatible search for $130K VP for Collaboration Chuck Triplett. They are currently conducting a regularly scheduled audit of the athletics department, etc.

In the corporate world, the resignation of an auditor (external) is the best single predictor of internal control deficiencies, because auditors compare the revenue they earn with the reputational costs of being associated with a company with problems, and they bail when that equation becomes negative. See for example Ashbaugh-Skaife et al (2007) at https://tippie.uiowa.edu/accounting/phd/publications/collins_discovery.pdf.

A few board members ask why she left, the explanation offered by Chair Lillis is vague. The claim is made that she felt fully supported. That’s not what I’ve heard.

2. Quarterly audit report, Interim Chief Auditor Trisha Burnett

There’s a handout but apparently just for board members. Board Secretary Angela Wilhelms didn’t put it in the meeting materials. Wouldn’t want to make it too easy for people to find out what’s going on:

Screen Shot 2015-12-02 at 12.44.38 PM

Update: After I emailed her, Wilhelms provided an updated pdf with this and the IT audit, here: http://trustees.uoregon.edu/sites/trustees2.uoregon.edu/files/a0196579-1abe-4b68-a828-887a65927d07agenda_and_materials_-_eac_-_120215.pdf

Screen Shot 2015-12-02 at 1.21.51 PM

Kurt Willcox asks the due diligence question: Do audit reports normally come to the board? Wilhelms: In summary. I can make them available.

3. IT risk assessment report, Mike Cullen, Baker Tilly LLP

Also not in the online materials. Again, the handouts are only for the board members.

Screen Shot 2015-12-02 at 12.50.33 PM

And of course the Baker Tilly consulting presentation is completely unreadable:

Screen Shot 2015-12-02 at 12.58.26 PM

No one on the audit committee has seen this report until now? How can they possibly do their due diligence on this?

Schill asks the obvious question: How does UO compare to comparators? Right amount of resources in the wrong areas? Not enough resources? Baker Tilly guy can’t answer this. Isn’t that his job? Why do we hire these consultants?

After and email, Board Secretary Wilhelms provides a link to a new set of materials, with these reports, here: http://trustees.uoregon.edu/sites/trustees2.uoregon.edu/files/a0196579-1abe-4b68-a828-887a65927d07agenda_and_materials_-_eac_-_120215.pdf (Page down).

Highest risk: No university policy on securing data and systems. They note the emergency IT policy, but it’s apparently not sufficient. Same with data classification policy – need procedures to implement.

Conclusion: UO is wide open to a Cylon attack. Need top leadership to create a case for change and move things forward in order to address these risks. Presumably Baker Tilly can explain that if we hire them to do another consulting report.

Lillis to Coltrane: This is part of the strategic plan? Coltrane: we expect to have a report by March.

Lillis to BT: Suppose instead of asking you about risk, we’d asked you how to match IT to our academic goals. Do you do that sort of work? BT: No. (That’s surprising.)

Finance and Facilities Committee — December 2, 2015 [Materials1:30 pm: Public Meeting Ford Alumni Center, Room 403

1. Q1 and FY15 Annual Treasury Report, Director of Treasury Operations Karen Levear

Very clear presentation. Board very into bonds. Levear is one of the few people who will break athletics out separately:

Screen Shot 2015-12-02 at 2.02.36 PM

Good luck getting Jamie Moffitt to do this in her report!

2. FY2015 Audited Financial Statements

Again, how can the board do its due diligence when they don’t even get these before the meeting? Wilhelms has just emailed the presentation about them, here. And after another request, she provides the audit report itself, here.

Very nice production values. Not a word about UO’s athletic budget, Jock Box subsidies, etc:

Screen Shot 2015-12-03 at 12.34.12 AM

2.1 Management report, Vice President for Finance and Administration/CFO Jamie Moffitt, Controller Kelly Wolf

Lots of stuff about the effect of PERS on UO – not good. While people retiring now will get pretty standard pensions (60% of final salary) UO and the state are still on the hook for bloated pas pensions, e.g. Bellotti.

[I had to leave for the Senate meeting. More later.]

2.2 Independent auditors’ report, Scott Simpson – Moss Adams LLP

3. Q1 FY16 Financial Report, VPFA/CFO Jamie Moffitt

4. OUS Policy Repeal (SBHE Policy #9 – Budgeted Operations Fund Balances) (Action),
VPFA/CFO Jamie Moffitt

5. Naming of Facilities – Jane Sanders Stadium and Willie and Donald Tykeson Hall (Action),
President Michael Schill

6. Campus Housing, Vice President for Student Life Robin Holmes and Director of Housing
Michael Griffel

6.1 Housing renovation plan overview

6.2 Bean Hall renovation project (Action)

Meeting of the Board — December 3, 2015 [Materials]

FORD ALUMNI CENTER, GIUSTINA BALLROOM (UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED)
8:00 am (other times approximate) – Convene Public Meeting

1. Roundtable Discussions with Students on Race‐Related Issues (Bean, East Conference Room)

President Schill has invited a group of students, in coordination from staff in CMAE, to participate in small group conversations about their experiences at the UO and current issues and events.

Public Meeting Recesses and Reconvenes in Giustina Ballroom (approximately 9:00 am)

2. Approval of Minutes from September 2015 Meeting (Action)

3. Public Comment: Those wishing to provide comment must sign up advance and review the public comment guidelines either online (http://trustees.uoregon.edu/meetings) or at the check‐in table at the meeting.

4.   President’s Report

5.   Resolutions from Committee

  ‐‐Seconded Motion from ASAC:  Student conduct code – repeal of outdated IMD and consolidation of policies (pending December 2 committee action)

  ‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: Repeal of SBHE policy #9 (pending December 2 committee action)

‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: Approval of Bean Hall renovation project (pending December 2 committee action)

‐‐Seconded Motion from FFC: Naming of certain university facilities (pending December 2 committee action)

Break

6. Government Affairs Updates

6.1 State Affairs: AVP for State and Community Affairs Hans Bernard will provide trustees
with an update on state affairs, including an overview of the University of Oregon’s priorities
for the 2016 legislative session.

6.2 Federal Affairs: AVP for Federal Affairs Betsy Boyd will provide an update on federal
government legislation and agency activities relating to higher education and the University
of Oregon.  Public Meeting Recessed

12:30 pm Small Group Lunches with Faculty

Public Meeting Reconvenes

7.   Tuition guarantee concept – update, Vice President for Finance and Administration Jamie Moffitt and Vice President for Enrollment Management Roger Thompson

Legislature pushes back against Board secrecy, closed meetings, 40-40-20 goals

InsideHigherEd has the full report, here. Worth reading it all:

How transparent should a public university governing board be?

Politicians in a number of states, who often say they’re responding to concerns from constituents, have been calling for appointed or elected governing boards of their public colleges, universities and systems to be more open, particularly when it comes to public meetings.

“There seems to be little trust in the trustees today,” said Thomas Harnisch, director of state relations at the American Association of State Colleges and Universities. “There are calls for governing board members to show their work and how they came up with the conclusion, instead of just showing up with their outcome.”

Suspicion of public officials is nothing new, but, in the case of board members, it’s ramping up as more and more people are concerned with hotly contested issues like college affordability and presidential compensation, says Michael Poliakoff, vice president of policy at the American Council of Trustees and Alumni, an organization that is often critical of college leaders and supports board activism. “It’s a natural and somewhat tempered response to the failings of the institutions themselves,” he said. …

Most of the article is about UNC. Here at UO, our new Board has got off to a rocky start under Chair Chuck Lillis. The most serious part has been a failure, so far, to deliver on the tit-for-tat: the UO boosters got independence, in exchange for raising lots of money to substitute for declining state funding. Instead it’s been the state that has increased its funding, while too much of the donor money has gone to sports facilities such as a new $16M softball stadium complete with jumbotron.

Missteps have ranged from holding meetings when school was not in session, sudden power-grab over academic policies, last-minute distribution of dockets, decisions about presidential buyouts, hiring, and athletic raises that were apparently made before the public meetings, a big push for an irrelevant “sports product design program” in the midst of a crisis over our status as an AAU research university, and then most recently a clampdown on public dissent from other board members, and an unusual parliamentary move that extended Lillis’s own term by a year without an explicit vote. The student member of the board, Helena Schlegel, resigned on principle after that meeting. See video of her testifying at the legislature below.

Meanwhile the Faculty representative, Susan Gary (Law) who was apparently nominated by Kitzhaber on the basis of her friendship with Dave Frohnmayer, took off to Hong Kong for a year’s sabbatical last year in the middle of her term. The UO Senate voted unanimously to have an open process for recommending replacement faculty candidates to the governor, but in the chaos over the Kitzhaber resignation she slipped through with another 2 year term. Interim President Coltrane and BOT Chair Chuck Lillis recommended her reappointment without even telling the faculty.

Now the HECC and Ben Cannon have stepped up their pressure on the independent boards over transparency, and the Legislature held a hearing a few weeks ago. Docket here.

It’s clear that the boards, and the UO Board in particular, have gotten the message that there are many concerns about their performance. This is the context for the “chats” Trustee Susan Gary has tried to arrange with faculty (last I heard attendance was zero – maybe she did better the second time) and the more useful meetings between faculty and the other trustees that Angela Wilhelms has been organizing. It’s still to be seen if this is just window-dressing, or if some board members are beginning to realize that they are not going to make UO better without cooperating with the faculty, or if they’ve got the message from the HECC and Kate Brown that the State is not going to put up with a board that picks pointless fights with its faculty and students. Here’s UO Senate President Randy Sullivan’s message to the Trustees, full text on page 39-40 here:

 Lastly, many of our colleagues were deeply disappointed to hear of the resignation of student Trustee Helena Schlegel in protest from the Board of Trustees.   Many of us worked long and hard to ensure that students, faculty, and staff would have an effective voice in the governance of this public university and we are chagrined to learn that that system does not appear to be being honored.

Video of the legislative hearing here, with UO Poli Sci Prof Joe Lowndes explaining how the board has isolated itself from students and faculty:

and here’s former UO student trustee Helena Schlegel, giving a very balanced perspective explaining what’s good about independent boards in general, and areas that need to be improved, such as add a graduate/professional school student seat. She’s very professional, and only after being asked about the news reports does she explain why she resigned: a struggle to get heard, not treated equitably and listened to by some trustees, frustrated to see the board not follow its own procedures.

 

The RG’s Diane Dietz has a preview of the Dec 2-3 Board meetings, here:

A proposal to offer students guaranteed tuition for four years, a plan for upgrading residence halls and a roundtable discussion on race relations are on the agenda when the University of Oregon Board of Trustees meets Wednesday and Thursday in Eugene. …