Grawemeyer Hall on Belknap campus

Faculty Senate met using a hybrid format on July 7 and they were joined by President Neeli Bendapudi. Senators received information on the recently approved 2022 budget, three academic program closures and two new proposals for academic programs.

President Bendapudi and Dan Durbin, chief financial officer, provided senators with an overview of the fiscal year 2022 budget. The budget was approved by the Board of Trustees on June 24, 2021.

Highlights of the budget included the return of employer retirement contribution to pre-Covid levels and an additional $3 million in endowment funding for the university. Durbin reported that for the second consecutive year, no increases were made to employee health insurance premiums or to employee parking permit fees.

Senators were informed about three proposed program closures. The Academic Programs committee recommended the closure of the master of arts in French, language and literature and the graduate certificate in translation and interpreting, as well the joint executive master in business administration degree previously offered in conjunction with the University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business and Economics. All three proposed program closures were approved and will go into effect on Aug. 1 of this year.

Two new academic program proposals were also presented to the Faculty Senate. The proposed programs include a bachelor of science in general studies through the College of Arts and Sciences and a master of science in health professions education through the College of Education and Human Development. The suggested implementation for the bachelor of science in general studies is the fall semester of 2022 and the master of science in health professions education is suggested to start for the spring semester of 2022. Both programs received approval from the senate.

Committee reports can be accessed on the Faculty Senate meetings webpage. Due to technical difficulties, a video of the full meeting is not available, but a recorded portion of the meeting can be found here.

The Faculty Senate does not meet in the month of August; the next Faculty Senate meeting is scheduled for September 1 via a hybrid format with the option of remote attendance via Teams, or in-person attendance at Ekstrom Library’s Chao Auditorium.