SenEx Meeting Minutes

Meeting Details:

Fiscal Year: FY2023
Time: 3:00 p.m.
Location: Zoom
Minutes Recorded By: Suzanne Scales
Minutes Approved on:


Attending Members

  • Betsy Barnhart
  • Justin Blumenstiel
  • Sam Brody
  • Nate Brunsell
  • Teri Chambers
  • Jessica Chilcoat
  • DaNae Estabine
  • Alessia Garcia
  • Hollie Hall
  • Corey Maley
  • Amanda Mollet
  • Kim Villa
  • Chris Wallace

Other Attendees

  • Jeff Chasen
  • Emily Conrad
  • Jen Roberts
  • Suzanne Scales

Approval of Previous Minutes

Chris Wallace motioned to approve the minutes from May 20, 2022.  Hollie Hall seconded.  Minutes approved by acclamation.


Student Senate Report

Reporter: Alessia Garcia (Student Senate Vice-President)
  1. Student senate passed two funding bills.  They still have amendments for this cycle. 
  2. They are creating and filling advisory boards. 
  3. Updating website and making it more user friendly.

Hollie Hall gave an update on the graduate senate.  The graduate student advisory board had it’s first meeting last week.  We are an advisory role to the provost and meet once a month with the provost.  Of the 21 members, 16 are new and we will have an orientation.  There are issues with attendance due to it being in person and hybrid only by request. 

Alessia added that the exec board is now confirmed, and members are those that have been active.   Student engagement is getting better.  We still have 28 student senator seats.  There are two vacancies University seats.

Staff Senate Report

Reporter: Jessica Chilcoat (Staff Senate President)

She sent a written report.  Staff senate will meet in person tomorrow in Alderson.  Once a semester staff senate will meet in person.

Faculty Senate Report

Reporter: Nate Brunsell (Faculty Senate President)

Nate Brunsell shared a written report.  KBOR issues have come up in the last week.  Meetings begin tomorrow with KBOR.

University Senate Report

Reporter: Ani Kokobobo (University Senate President)

Ani Kokobobo had nothing new to report.  The first in person meeting went well.  We will resume our Zoom meetings. 

Unfinished Business

Employee dependent tuition—we’ll have more to share later.

Hollie said next meeting is on the 14th and she’ll have more information about health insurance.

Ani said employee dependent tuition will be announced on September 20.  Also working on an employee tuition assistance.  It will be a 12-hour limit.  It will be equivalent to what’s being given to dependents.  Faculty have been excluded from this.  Ani is advocating that faculty be included.  Question about thesis hours being exempt from tuition assistance.  Ani will look into it.  The number or hours will expand.  Are certain professional schools excluded?  Ani doesn’t think so.  There isn’t much in the draft policy about this.  There appears to be a limit to thesis hours. 

Nate reported on the credit transfer vote.  KBOR is allowing universities to do away with the number of credit hours transferring in from a community.  Jen Roberts would like to get Faculty Senate approval so they can go to KBOR and say faculty supports this. It is an equity thing for students.  Will increase retention rates and ease transition to a four-year.  This will help financially and with competition.  To allow the increase in 60 hours, they had to have an agreement, creating a burden.  This requirement will no longer be needed.  Nate does not think there will be resistance to this. 

Ani reported she had a conversation with Ada Emmett, Ombuds.  She will come to the meeting on October 18.  Ada wants input from us.  We have Faculty Ombuds and University Ombuds.  Ada is hoping to fold the Faculty Ombuds role into University Ombuds.  She hopes to hire a full-time staff position.  They would have more capacity for the office.  She wants feedback.  There are specifics in the code.  Ani would like to defer to Ada to how she’d like to staff the office.  A discussion followed.  There was a question if the policy covers staff or just Ombuds.  Because of tensions earlier around hiring of Ombuds, it would be good to be clear that beyond the Ombuds, we will give deference to those individuals to move forward with staff hirings.  Regarding 5.1.4, this is dated. There’s a suggestion that one needs 10 years of KU experience to be Ombuds.  Is this necessary or can we stipulate that it should be a tenured faculty?  Tenure is important because of conflict of interest.  Comprehensive knowledge of the university can be measured in other ways. Application materials can show comprehensive knowledge.  A comment was made that tenure may not be necessary.  Tenure helps in terms of conflict of interest.  Tenure protects from retaliation.  Another comment was that some experience is important for knowledge—one year is not enough. If we agree with these changes, we can move to the University Senate. 

A discussion followed if we should further clarify before moving it to the University Senate.  Ten years of experience has been there historically.  Maybe a compromise of seven years at KU.  Maybe we can define comprehensive knowledge.  They need to have been involved on campus.  We could give examples of experiences that would amount to comprehensive knowledge.  We could say “as evidenced by work experience and application materials”.  A laundry list is unnecessary.  You’ll get a broader group of applicants.  It’s important that the Ombuds understand the culture.  In the past, Ombuds was just tacked onto to a someone’s responsibilities. We should come to an understanding of description that we can all agree to.  While they are reimagining the office, it might be a good time to reimagine the position description.  We have another SenEx meeting on September 27.  Jeff Chasen from HR has some experience with Ombuds.  Jeff said that part of the Ombuds role is an administrative role.  You are looking for a different skill set than someone who is just listening.  The administrative role may be a skillset we don’t have at KU.

Ada can come to the next SenEx, and we can add some of this language and add three years. 

Hollie Hall made a motion to table this until September 27.  Chris Wallace seconded the motion.

SenEx - Sept. 13, 2022

Member for

1 year 7 months
Submitted by Caty Movich on