News and notes from the Tuesday and Wednesday meeting of the CU Board of Regents on the CU Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora:
- The board on Wednesday discussed a proposed change to the process for appointing an interim university president in the event the current president is unable to perform the office’s duties. The current procedure calls for the vice president of academic affairs to be immediately named the interim president until the board can convene to choose an interim president. Chair Michael Carrigan said the proposed change would require the board chair to choose a temporary president from among current vice presidents and chancellors, to be followed by the full board convening to choose an interim president. Regent Joe Neguse expressed reservations about such a change, which he said would unnecessarily add extra steps to the process and potentially lead to the person appointed temporary president feeling slighted should the board choose a different successor. The proposal will be voted on by the board at its June meeting.
- Steven Hayward, the first Visiting Scholar in Conservative Thought and Policy at CU-Boulder, on Tuesday reported to the board on his one-year appointment, which concludes this semester. He called it “an overwhelmingly positive experience for me.” Despite being initially apprehensive about the role, he said he changed his mind over the course of the year. “I think there were some great advantages to showing up on campus as the ‘sandwich board’ conservative.” He also commended faculty for not overtly exerting political bias in their work. “My perception is that the overwhelming majority of faculty in the humanities and social sciences – while mostly or very liberal – conform to the highest models of teaching excellence and objectivity,” he told the board. If and when views are not represented, he said, it’s likely out of omission or unawareness, rather than because of bias. Most board members, representing both major parties, thanked Hayward for his work. “We need great debate and thoughtful people,” said Regent Stephen Ludwig.
- The board on Wednesday passed a change in language to passages pertaining to faculty evaluation. The revision, first proposed by Faculty Council, changes references from “faculty service” to “faculty leadership and service,” a reflection of the value of leadership work undertaken by faculty members that might have previously gone undervalued during evaluations.
- Following recommendations from its Laws and Policies Committee, the board on Wednesday passed a minor revision to Policy 3.G, regarding evaluation of non-presidential personnel with reporting roles to the Board of Regents, to reflect significant regent involvement in the process. The board also passed a travel policy, articulating approvals for regent travel that had been followed customarily.
- Phil Zeitler, M.D., Ph.D., was presented Tuesday with the Chase Faculty Community Service Award. He is professor of Pediatrics and Clinical Sciences; head, Section of Pediatric Endocrinology, CU Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus; and chair, Department of Endocrinology, Children's Hospital Colorado.
- Regent Vice Chair Sue Sharkey reported that 4,500 responses to the relaunched Social Climate Survey had been received as of Tuesday morning.
- The board on Tuesday approved two new degrees at CU Denver: master of arts in applied geography and geo-spatial science and master of science in taxation. The board also approved the merging of the existing immunology and microbiology departments in the School of Medicine; a program plan for the acquisition and renovation of 2860 Wilderness Place in Boulder; and a term contract for UCCS coach Jeff Culver.
- The host campus report was provided Tuesday by Huntington Potter, Ph.D., professor and director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Research and Clinical Center, Department of Neurology and Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome. He discussed efforts to have the center earn a designation as a federal Alzheimer’s research center, and answered questions about his work.