RESEARCH COORDINATING COUNCIL
April 21, 2005
Brian Attebery John Bennion Jim Bigelow
Phil Blick Steve Byers Jim Creelman
Kay Flowers Larry Ford Dianne Horrocks
Richard Inouye Lori Johnson Skip Lohse
Mike McCurry Robert Picard Malcom Shields
Susan Swetnam Rob Van Kirk Paul Zelus
Alternates: Cyndy Kelchner for Beth Hudnall Stamm
Absent: Linda Deck, Kathy DiLorenzo, Deb Easterly, Frank Harmon, Subbaram Naidu, Al Strickland, Thomas Windholz
Dr. Ford called the meeting to order.
Dr. Ford gave an update on the staff changes within the Office of Research and the Office of Academic Affairs. Dr. Wharton is now the Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs and Connie Tillotson went with Dr. Wharton to be his management assistant. Dr. Ford is now the Interim Chief Research Officer and Carole Gull will be Dr. Ford’s assistant. All of this is on a temporary basis until a new President is hired.
I. Approval of Minutes
Dr. Ford asked for any changes or corrections to the minutes. Dr. Ford requested a motion to approve the minutes. Dr. Picard moved to accept the minutes, Dr. Bigelow seconded the motion. Motion passed (Memorandum #162).
A. Faculty Research Committee (FRC) - Susan Swetnam reported that there are 25 proposals to consider at the meeting scheduled for Friday, April 22, 2005. The Distinguished Researcher has been selected and will be honored at Commencement on May 14, 2005.
B. Graduate Student Research and Scholarship Committee (GSRSC) – Carole Gull provided the report. The committee will be evaluating 18 research and 4 dissemination proposals and allocating awards on April 29, 2005.
C. Undergraduate Student Research Committee (UgRC) - Dr. VanKirk reported that 40 student presentations, 36 posters and 4 oral presentations were presented at the Undergraduate Symposium that was held April 14-15, 2005. Awards were presented for the best presentations in several different categories. Approximately 80 people, including presenters, attended the symposium. The committee received 7 research proposals (no travel proposals). The committee met on Tuesday, April 19th and voted to fully fund 4 proposals at 100%, 1 at 62% and 2 not at all. The total funded was $9,197.89. The difference between the amount funded for proposals and the budgeted amount of $10,500.00 was spent on expenses for the Undergraduate Symposium. Fred Risinger from Pharmaceutical Sciences will take over as Chair of the UgRC Committee in the Fall. Dr. Van Kirk has notified the appropriate Academic Faculty and Chairs that need to elect new members to the Committee.
The UgRC committee wanted an issue brought before the RCC Committee with 2 proposals that were reviewed. The committee had questions about the laboratory safety procedures. The proposals met the requirements of the Biosafety Committee because they did not utilize Recomdinant DNA in the proposed research, so they did not require approval. However, the Biological Sciences representative, Jim Groome, had some concerns that they were using some potentially toxic bi-products from organisms they were growing. He had questions as to whether there are lab safety procedures falling through the cracks in the committee system -- in areas where research does not fall within the Hazardous Waste, Animal Safety, Biosafety and/or Human Subjects Committees. The concern is especially with undergraduate students. The committee feels there should be something in the guidelines that makes the faculty sponsor state they will train and supervise the student. The UgRC committee wanted this issue brought to RCC to see if there is any concern about this matter that RCC might want to address. The concern is that in one of the proposals the researcher would be using some potentially contagious strains of bacteria that will be grown in a lab. Jim Groome just wants to make sure that this is being done in a facility that has a faculty sponsor keeping tabs on what the undergraduate students are doing. The committee voted to amend the proposal guidelines to include a form/letter which must be signed by the faculty sponsor stating that the faculty sponsor will be held personally responsible for monitoring the safety, health, proper procedures, etc. of the student and the lab.
After discussion, the RCC felt that a form stating that the faculty sponsor is responsible for proper laboratory safety procedures, signed by the sponsor would be the proper procedure.
D. University Research Grants (URC) – Dr. Ford stated that there are 12 proposals to be considered. The URC will meet on Tuesday, April 26, 2005 to allocate the awards. URC does have a request for another extension on one of the proposals that has not been completed after about 2 years. URC must decide if they want to grant another extension or put the money in the fund for someone who has a more timely need for the money.
E. Animal Care Facilities – Dr. Ford stated we have hired Mia Nettik as the Animal Care Facilities Manager. Mia was one of the technicians in the center and also was acting care facilities manager while a search was conducted for a new manager. Mia came out at the top of the process. There were 4 candidates, two of whom withdrew. The committee was unanimous in selecting Mia. She seems to be doing a good job. We have one search that just closed for the animal technician position and one where the exams are being graded for the animal lab technician. Very soon we will have 3 full time people in the facility. We are doing some necessary upgrades and renovations and looking for more space. These changes will allow the facility to be in compliance with the regulatory agencies.
III. Council Business
A. Review of 2nd Draft of Guidelines for Evaluation of Research Faculty Concerning Promotion and Tenure – Motion by Dianne Horrocks to approve the 2nd Draft of Guidelines for Evaluation of Research Faculty Concerning Promotion and Tenure, seconded by Dr. Van Kirk.
Discussion: Add an amendment to the 2nd draft with an initial statement under Evaluation Criteria that major distribution of effort should be research and that teaching may be required, but there is a possibility it may be much less than research. In particular, there may be years when a person doesn’t teach.
Motion by Jim Bigelow to make amendment directly under the Evaluation Criteria heading stating the distribution of effort of Research Faculty, John Bennion seconded the Motion.
The amendment will be made to the 2nd draft and the draft will be sent out to all members via email. If no objections are received, we will forward on to the Faculty Senate.
The motion passed.
B. Review of Release Time Support for External Funding (RTSEF) Proposals - Five proposals were submitted to the Committee for consideration. They were discussed and then ranked as follows.
Cole, Philip 153 points Ranking 1st
Lawyer, Steven 141 points Ranking 3rd
Marsh, Kevin 136 points Ranking 4th
The proposals and their rankings will be forwarded on to Dr. Robert Wharton for his consideration.
Dr. Ford mentioned a letter he received from Thomas Klein who received a RTSEF last year. He reported that he has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities for a summer stipend. This represents one success from those proposals funded last year.
C. Other Business – One item that was not on the agenda, Federal Initiatives. John Revier who is Chief Legislator to Congressman Simpson said they met deadlines for getting things to Congressional Committees. They expect the appropriations process to move quickly in the House -- first bill being marked up by the sub- committee in early May. Energy and water, interior and environmental bills will be marked up the first two weeks of May, expect defense and homeland security to move quickly as well. June and July will be busy months with each of the 11 appropriations bills on the floor prior to the August District Work Period. Due to reorganization in the House, there are 11 bills instead of 13. Simpson’s subcommittee assignments that are of interest to us are energy and water, and interior and environment.
Richard Inouye wanted to make everyone aware of the Stream Ecology Symposium being held May 5, 2005 at the Performing Arts Center, starting at 8:00 a.m. It is an all day event and there will be a dinner in the evening. Encourage all to attend.
Dianne Horrocks mentioned the Recognition Reception sponsored by the Office of Sponsored Programs for faculty and staff, and everyone who worked on the research related committees will be held May 5th from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the Alumni House.
Meeting adjourned ~4:15 p.m.
Approved by Faculty Senate on October 17, 2005