University of Houston-Victoria

President

President’s Cabinet
9:30 a.m., July 8, 2020
Teams Meeting Minutes

Present: Akins, Beran, Cantu, Cobler, Colwell, Faulk, B. Glenn, C. Glenn, Lake, Lambert, Litton, Locher, McCusker, Smith, Tomek and Walyuchow

Absent: Figueroa and Pisors

Guests: Mary Field, representing Staff Council; Rachel Martinez, representing School of Education, Health Professions & Human Development; and Ricardo Teixeira, representing Faculty Senate

I. Organizational Business

A. President’s Update

President Glenn said that new regulations for international students have come forth; international students taking completely online courses will have to go back to their country. He said all international students are a priority and the university will continue to take care of them. He said there are several university units addressing this issue.

At this time unless conditions change, President Glenn said UHV is still planning to be open for the fall with face-to-face classes and open residency halls. Even if the university has to go fully online, he said UHV would keep the residency halls open. He stressed for all to use patience and work together.

B. Minutes

The June 10, 2020, minutes were approved as written.

Motion carried unanimously.

II. Business

A. Academic Affairs— Chance Glenn

Strategic Plan

Provost Glenn thanked all the members of the Strategic Planning committee and sub-committees for their efforts. He stated the strategic plan is very extensive and a final draft is ready, just adding a few last-minute touches.  He said the next step is setting a timetable on how the university will act upon some of the proposed changes with the financial impacts due to pandemic.

Re-opening Task Force

Thanked all members of the task force, including Ms. Cobler and her team for the speed and professional manner in which information was handled. He said it is important for the community to know UHV is work hard on handling the pandemic issues.

Class Safety

Classrooms are currently being tested for social distancing. He said he is working with the deans to determine which classes will be on-campus. Provost Glenn said he feels the digital, synchronous format is going to be helpful to our students.

COVID Operation Center

Dr. Tara Vaughn will oversee the COVID Operation Center. This center is a potential contact center. It will not be collecting medical information, only notifying individuals impacted by possible/actual quarantines.

Race Diversity Team Task Force

The task force is establishing leadership and is working on a series of activities. Provost Glenn said he is happy to report that more faculty, staff and students want to be involved. He acknowledged the faculty series and noted the number of participants is very positive. Victoria Mayor Rawley McCoy has approached the university to host and foster race diversity discussions for the community.

Administrative Changes

Provost Glenn said there is a verbal agreement for Dr. Rachel Martinez to serve as the Interim Dean for the School of Education, Health Professions & Human Development. He reported Karen Locher has accepted the Library Senior Director position effected fall 2020.

Provost Glenn said UHV is taking all measures to protect and be prepared for the fall semester with the new protocols.

B.  Facilities & Finance Updates

Construction

Mr. Bern reported that the Ben Wilson Street project is about 30% designed and already out of budget. There is a meeting scheduled to get back in budget. Completion is expected by early 2023.

The Wellness Center is going to the Board of Regents for approval at their August meeting.

Chick-fil-A’s opening in the Commons building is targeted for August 18.

The Northwest Campus is scheduled for a possible December completion date.

Smith Hall has a completion date of August 3.

The STEM building will have an October opening.

Employee Scholarships

The Executive Committee is reviewing the employee and dependents scholarship proposal.

Facilities

The Facilities department is working hard getting signage in place and disinfecting everything for the fall semester.

FY 21 Budget

Mr. Beran said the budget for FY 21 will be tight with the already known 5% reduction in State funding. In order to have a balanced budget when the legislature meets there may be more cuts.

Departmental Changes

Val Walden retired as the Senior Director of Finance and June Nelson is taking her position in the interim. A finalist is expect to be named in the next two to three months.

Rural Internet

Mr. Beran stated that when public schools were closed this past year and public school students were required to work from home 600,000 students in rural Texas had no internet service available. UHV will be working on a pilot program to reach this population and a proposal is being prepared to ask the legislature for these funds.

Funding

Mr. Beran reported that UHV has received $1.2M institutional support from CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security) Act. There is $815,000 in FEMA money coming in to reimburse for costs incurred due to Hurricane Harvey.

 

C. Enrollment Management—Jose Cantu

Enrollment

Dr. Cantu reported that enrollment data is 3.9% ahead of last year’s headcount and semester credit hours. Down in new students. The freshmen class enrollment is looking good and expect around 300 students. Currently we are having some registration trouble due to our navigate system. The university’s graduate and continuing student numbers continue to grow. Most of the students are registering for online programs. In working with Academic Partnership, we have 56 new students and 181 continuing students.

Dual Credit

Dual credit is excluded in the above numbers. UHV has MOUs with Cuero, Goliad and Saint Joe. High School counselors will help these students register at the end of the month.

International Students

As mentioned earlier, new regulations have been received from the government for international students where at least one face-to-face course will be required.

-Per Dr. Tomek, if class is 100% online—the professor can arrange for themselves or someone else on staff to proctor the online class on campus for international students. She and others are working toward options and solutions.

-Provost Glenn clarified, saying the proctor must be in the room, and the student must sign in and attend the class on the assigned days.

-President Glenn said a lawsuit has already been filed against the federal law by Harvard University and others.

-Dr. Tomek said Arts & Sciences is working on designing an elective undergraduate course that would have guest topics with different professors to lecture and team-teach. She said the Faculty Senate and Provost will need to approve the course but it could be implemented by the fall. She said each school has face-to-face offerings.

Dr. Cantu said that the international students were happy to receive an email from President Glenn where he indicated UHV is a destination university serving students from around the world and that the university is committed to providing them an environment to complete their degrees. He said after this email went out ten international students enrolled overnight.

 

D. Student Affairs—Jay Lambert

Housing

Dr. Lambert said housing is ready. Every student will be housed in a single room, with private bathroom and a maximum of two occupants per suite. Notices will be posted to each door to remind them to wear a mask when they leave their space.

Mask Violators

Training for an on-call system for students not wearing a mask is already in the works.

Online Orientation

The June 25 online orientation had 63 students attend, with most staying the entire day. The next online orientation is scheduled for mid-July.

 

E. University Advancement—Jesse Pisors

Mr. Pisors was not in attendance, so there was no report.

 

F. Other Items

Dr. Akins shared some faculty concerns about the fall semester. He said the option to not teach face-to-face but be synchronous online still has some concerned and feels that not everyone understands the new mode and would like for the Provost to send out another email. He said the mega classes (those classes over 50) have some faculty concerned about the seating of the students in the classroom. Currently it looks like there are three classes with over 70 students.

-Provost Glenn said each room has a capacity stated for each phase and social distancing. Any students arriving once the class is full will need to attend remotely. It will be up to the faculty member to determine when the classroom limit has been reached and to ensure that all students are wearing a mask.

Another topic of discussion was how to decide which students need to attend on which days. This will need to be coordinated within each school; classrooms need to be assigned to assist with this stage of the planning.

Ms. McCusker introduced, and President Glenn welcomed, Mary Field as the incoming Staff Council Chair effective August 1. Ms. McCusker apologized to Ms. Cobler on the last minute speaker change for last month and thanked Provost Glenn for stepping in to speak about the university’s re-opening. Mr. Beran will be speaking at the July 16 Staff Council meeting. She said there were five volunteers that worked at the Victoria Food pantry on June 27.

-President Glenn thanked Ms. McCusker for her exceptional leadership this last year in her role as Chair of the Staff Council.

Ms. Cobler said there has been a lot of information and communication about COVID-19 and encouraged everyone to read the COVID-19 webpages. She announced that UHV is sponsoring the Victoria Generals ballgame on July 21 at 7:05 p.m. She said no tickets are required. As a precaution, masks will be required except when seated watching the game, temperatures taken and attendance limited to 50% capacity. UHV Provost Chance Glenn will sing the national anthem. There will be giveaways and prizes for the games between innings. It will be a fun night for all. She said Marketing & Communications is requesting that any jobs need for the fall semester be submitted through the project request system on the intranet as soon as possible.

Dean Colwell said the School of Business Administration faculty seem comfortable with the fall face-to-face hybrid classes. There seemed to be concerns with Academic Partnerships but a meeting on 7/7/20 seems to have reduced tension and worked out their concerns. He said the school is working on social media marketing and announced enrollment is turning up a bit.

Mr. Faulk said a UHS compliance is requiring UHV to go to a multi-factor authentication login system. This compliance issue is due by fall 2020. He said they need volunteers to test devices and hope to have faculty and staff enrolled by the fall semester. Student implementation will be delayed until the end of October. He stated he would keep everyone updated as we move along. Mr. Faulk said IT is working Donald Jirkovsky, UHV’s Center for Regional Collaboration, and others to look into a Rural Internet Project. IT will be working with 15 faculty members while testing the upgraded classroom technology equipment this afternoon.

Ms. Lake was complimented on the fine leadership for the series dealing with diversity and inclusion. She gave the credit to Christopher McDonald, saying the Equal Opportunity department laid the foundation but Mr. McDonald had the spark that broadened discussion for faculty and staff. More programs are being planned Ms. Lake said and speakers are volunteering to participate. She reported there has been a substantial revision to the Title IX policy now that the regulations are more complex and UHS is currently conducting community review for the policy.

Dean Litton said that like everyone else, the School of Education is preparing for the fall. He feels that faculty and students can work out the face-to-face alternating days without too many issues. TEA changed the accounting system for the Teacher Education program. This year will be phase 1, data collecting and the following year the new assessment goes into full effect. To meet the academic and reporting needs within the department; additional personnel have been hired, with two more to be hired. Dean Litton thanked Dr. Cantu for the data that showed enrollment up 16% for undergraduates and up 35% for graduate semester credit hours. He gave credit to Ms. Cobler, faculty and staff saying it takes a combined effort to grow enrollment. Dean Litton introduced his replacement, Interim Dean Rachel Martinez. He said Dr. Martinez brings a lot of leadership and experience as already having served as the Associate Dean for the School of Education. Dr. Martinez feels supported and is ready to step into the role. She feels honored to have this opportunity. Dean Litton said that this was his last meeting and that he had enjoyed the past eight years here at UHV. He said he very much enjoyed this group and their professionalism.

--President Glenn and Provost Glenn thanked Dean Litton for his wisdom, experience and contributions to UHV stating he was a good colleague and it had been a pleasure working with him.

Interim Dean Martinez said Education has eight undergraduate sections of face-to-face and five graduate sections. Classes are capped at 30 students. She said the school is working on additional information for the synchronous classes ordered. She said a list of international students would be helpful.

Congratulations were extended to Ms. Locher on her acceptance as the new Library Senior Director. Ms. Locher said the Library is open by appointment. Jana Manson has submitted a proposal to Provost Glenn on racial and social justice and diversity. The proposal will include several sources, chapters and articles but not a whole book as suggested by committee. Ms. Locher said the Library is gearing up for the beginning of the school year by renewing subscriptions and licensing as required.

Ms. Smith reminded the group that open ERS Summer Enrollment ends July 11. The virtual benefits fair was well attended and kudos extended to Kayla Sappington and IT for their assistance. Eunice Mesa is working on a virtual new employee and faculty orientation.

Interim Dean Tomek suggested in working on the internet for rural area students to reach out to coops as they are putting fiber cables in rural areas. The STEM faculty have been successfully calling students to encourage registration. She said Arts & Sciences mega classes are approved to be synchronously online to remove the need for outfitting Walker and Alcorn for the hybrid mode. A minimal number will be on-campus to reduce the need for cleaning and social distancing.

Mr. Walyuchow said the uncertainty of the times has made staying on top of the various athletic issues very challenging. There is a lot of coordinating of specifics to the requirements that are set forth. He has been working with the NAIA guidelines, UH guidelines, redoing schedules, and working on housing and dining needs. He said the numbers are looking good and the university will be bringing in more student athletes than ever.

 

Meeting adjourned at 11:15 a.m.

Submitted by Kathy Walton