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University of Houston - Victoria

President's Office

9:30 a.m., Wednesday, September 9. 2009
Meeting Minutes

Present: Barr, Beran, Dahlstrom, Di Leo, Ferguson, Hudson, LaBrecque, Niroomand, Norgard, Rice, Rossow, Schnebly, L. Smith, Tart

Absent: Garino

OUA Representative: Mundy

Guest: Val Walden

I. Organizational Business

—Minutes of August 26, 2009 were approved as written.

II. Business

New In-State Travel Rates—Val Walden

Val Walden, UHV's Comptroller, discussed the in-state meal and lodging reimbursement rate changes that became effective September 1. Meal reimbursements are not based strictly on the $36 maximum as in the past; "Domestic Per Diem Rates" on the General Services Administration (GSA)'s web site are now allowed for areas listed. This site is divided up by counties, and the reimbursement rates will vary by county. The $36 maximum rate is still allowed for areas not listed on the GSA website. The GSA rates are also allowed for state-funded lodging, with a maximum of $85 for areas not listed. The lodging amount for locally-funded travel remains the same, actual reasonable expense, $85, and receipts are always required for reimbursements. Supervisors have the ability to authorize more for lodging in special cases, but Ms. Walden reminded cabinet members that their budgets were built on the lower rate. Another change she mentioned was that mileage will no longer be based on the Texas Mileage Guide rather it will be based on a web base mapping service such as Yahoo maps. Ms. Walden reported that the University of Houston System (UHS) has notified UHV that first class travel will no longer be allowed; so UHV is phasing this out and a revised travel policy will be forthcoming.

Security and ID Badges—Joe Ferguson

Mr. Ferguson announced UHV is installing a access security system. The state requires we put video surveillance on all our server rooms and wiring rooms, and it was decided now was the time to move forward with cameras in the hallways as well. There will be 24 cameras total in both the Center and West buildings. The camera system will record and save video surveillance for up to a month at a time. The new system will provide keyless access to the exterior doors only; interior doors will continue to be opened with keys. Within the next two to four weeks this system will be implemented and building keys will be disabled on some doors. The UHV buildings across the street will not be included in this round of security changes. It was proposed to cabinet members this change in security is an opportunity to switch from our current ID cards to employee badges that will be used for the keyless access. Topics of discussions around the table:

  • it was noted that all other UHS campuses require employee badges,
  • it would be good for customer service and security,
  • it would/would not include student workers,
  • sticker bar codes could be placed on the back of the card for the library, and
  • when an employee departs, the card would be deactivated.

The Human Resources department would be responsible for taking the photo and printing the card and the Security department would have access to the images from the security system.

It was requested that Mr. Ferguson and Ms. Smith work together on this issue and bring it back to cabinet.

III. Roundtable

Mr. Ferguson passed.

Dr. Rice announced that convocation is scheduled for September 30 and will be a reception, rather than a luncheon due to our faculty and staff having grown too large for a luncheon in the Multi-Purpose Room. Dr. Rice indicated she would check into the possibility of offering the reception by ITV so those in Sugar Land and Cinco Ranch could attend if they were unable to make the trip to Victoria. She also reported there was a good President's Regional Advisory Board (PRAB) this week with two deans, the student senate president, and Professor Macarena as the speakers.  

Dean Di Leo reported the School of Arts and Sciences enrollment is up in the majors of undergraduate English by 225% and graduate Psychology by 73%. The school's first five Chinese students are on campus. Dean Di Leo noted hopefully this number will be doubled by next year. Dean Di Leo requested assistance in trying to enhance student and cultural life for this group since there are no host families for these students and they do not have driver's licenses. He thanked the Student Senate for their help but encouraged others to assist with our international student guests. He also reported that Dr. Macarena Hernandez appeared on CNN Newsroom as one of three guest speakers that discussed the educational attainment of Latinas. It was reported 139 guests packed the Alcorn Auditorium to hear the first ABR Reading Series guest speaker, George Singleton. Ms. Dorothy Alcorn kindly hosted the first reception of the fall series.

Mr. Beran reported out of 3,550 students only 136, 3.8%, have not paid their registration fees. He has requested UHS speed up their process so UHV can begin working on student housing by November 1st, allowing 45 days to get it completed with grand opening proposed for March/April. Mr. Beran announced an efficiency and improvement project is being conducted, which includes best practices that have been developed for each unit. A team consisting of Kristen Lindley, Val Walden, Greg Fanelli and Wayne Beran will visit with every supervisor concerning this project.

Ms. Barr announced there will be a Staff Council meeting tomorrow at 10:00 a.m., with a recap from the past two cabinet meetings. Dr. Rice is to present on downward expansion. The first meeting of the University System Staff Executive Council (USSEC) is scheduled for October 8th. This is also the date of the next Staff Council meeting so this meeting will be hosted at the Sugar Land campus. 

Dr. Dahlstrom announced Banned Books Week: Celebrating the Freedom to Read is scheduled for September 26 through October 3. He also reported the Texas Book Festival is scheduled for October 31-November 1 in Austin.

Dr. Schnebly reported the Faculty Senate is well on its way and has already had their September meeting. The next meeting of the Faculty Senate is scheduled for October 2. The senate is in the process of electing a junior senator from each of the schools and finishing other elections. The next meeting of University Faculties Executive Council (UFEC) is scheduled for September 17.

Dean Niroomand passed.

Dean Rossow said the master degree programs in the School of Education and Human Development (SoEHD) are up 22% for the fall. The school will be launching their first master's level program in Adult and Higher Education lead by Dr. Thomas Cox. Dean Rossow has met with Dr. Bob Moore to talk about Victoria Independent School Districts (VISD) dropout rate. He would like to develop a partner initiative with VISD to assist and see if we can pin point the dropout rate variables.

Ms. Norgard reported enrollment as of yesterday was at 3,702, up 16.6% over last year and 48.6% up over fall 2005.

Enrollment increases:

  • Fall 05 to Fall 06 up 6.5%
  • Fall 06 to Fall 07 up 5.0%
  • Fall 07 to Fall 08 up 14%
  • Fall 08 to Fall 09 up 16.6%

To improve student flow Ms. Norgard has requested information from the Bursar, Financial Aid and Admission offices. She announced she would be sending staff to participate in the valley at the Texas Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (TACRAO) College Week. The Career Services office has seven events planned for this fall, some are scheduled for Victoria and some will be in Fort Bend.

Ms. Smith reported the monthly electronic time and approving went well with only a few “house calls.” She reminded cabinet members that paper time sheet forms are still required for hourly employees. Leave request forms are still required for both monthly and bi-weekly employees. An electronic leave request form design is currently being designed and will hopefully be available in the near future. Efficiency has already been seen and felt in the schools by not having to deal with adjunct faculty paper time sheets.

Dean Tart announced UHS has received formal approval to be part of the Texas Medical Center, meaning UHV is now part of the Texas Medical Center. She reported the School of Nursing (SoN) will host three information sessions on the Second Degree BSN program; September 10th and 24th at the UHSSL campus and September 23rd at the UHSCR campus. Dean Tart also reported that Dr. LaBrecque, Mr. Beran and Ms. Hartman are working on securing funding for the nursing reduction shortage. She stated the school had evaluated their graduates with a 42% response rate. Of those who answered the question, "Would you recommend another nurse to attend the RN to BSN program at UHV?", 100% said yes. Dean Tart closed by saying she was speaking about H1N1 on the South Texas Crossroads program today.

Dr. LaBrecque reported the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) change report for downward expansion was submitted on August 31st. She also spoke to Dr. Rudy Jackson about the next step, which is the approval that will be decided in December at their annual meeting in Atlanta. She stated that the Deans and Faculty Senate Executive Committee had a Back-to-School Retreat on August 26th that was very productive. Dr. LaBrecque is chairing a committee of senior faculty members on the revision of the faculty handbook and how to communicate the changes. Dr. Pat Vandervoort, Vice President at Victoria College, has initiated a retreat with UHV Deans and Associate Vice President for Student Success and Enrollment Management. Dr. LaBrecque briefly reported on the various issues that are being addressed in the UH Provost Council including revising the UHV mission. This process will begin in October.

Dr. Hudson announced this morning's chamber breakfast at Victoria College was well received by the community and that Dr. Butler's attitude in working with UHV is excellent. He also expressed his appreciation for the presentations at yesterday's PRAB meeting and thanked those that attended the reception; noting his appreciation for the faculty members that took time to come. There was discussion on the president's blog with Dr. Hudson acknowledging one of the reasons we use the Advocate's services is because 100,000 see the Advocate's web site, so we have the best of both worlds. He encouraged cabinet members to help move the dialog in the right way and stated this process is a way for people to learn about UHV. Dr. Hudson stated letters have been sent to all of Victoria's middle school teachers and students to name the UHV Jaguar.

Dr. Dahlstrom closed the meeting by stating that Dr. Margaret Rice would be speaking at the Rotary Club tomorrow and that UHV is providing good information to the Advocate.

Meeting was adjourned at 11:15 a.m.
Submitted by: Kathy Walton