Report: November 4, 2004

UNVERSITY OF TORONTO AT MISSISSAUGA

ERINDALE COLLEGE COUNCIL

REPORT OF THE ERINDALE COLLEGE COUNCIL meeting held on Thursday, November 4, 2004 at 3:15 p.m., in the Council Chamber, South Building, UTM.

PRESENT: R. Beck (in the Chair), I. Orchard, A. Wensley, J. Lim, R. Baker, J. Linley, I. Still, S. O’Connell, M. Wright, M. Lorentz, N. Hendricks, J. Hendricks, J. Tran, L. Gaspini, C. Bryson, K. Raufi, S. Kessler, P. King, S. Laughton, M.A. Mavrinac, W. Ghobriel, M. Overton, K. Duncliffe, D. Aldouri, A. Garbaczewska, B. Branfireun, M. Rennie, K. Chadder, F. Ahmed, K. Wilson, S. McGlashan, P. Tseng, T. Carlisle, E. Zammit, A. Iwaniw, J. Seel, S. McCarthy, I. Whyte, V. TeBrugge, A. Bellerby, C. Boyd, E. Palmitesta, R. Daoud, S. Kibria, D. Leeies, A. Vyas, D. Crocker, Z. Baig, K. Li, J. Stirling, G. Anderson
REGRETS: E. Kalinowski

1. Adoption of Agenda

The Agenda was adopted. ( I. Orchard / I. Still )

2. Minutes of Previous Meeting (October 6, 2004)

The report of the previous meeting was approved. (I. Still /I. Orchard)

3. Business Arising from the Minutes

There was no business arising from the minutes.

4. Reports of Standing Committees

The Chair called on the Professor Anthony Wensley to report on behalf of the Academic Affairs Committee.

a) Academic Affairs Committee – A. Wensley

Professor Anthony Wensley reported that at its October 26, 2004 meeting, the Academic Affairs Committee’s agenda included the ratification of the Committee membership and election of new Chair. In addition, the Committee had a presentation on research activities at UTM from the Vice-Principal: Research. This report gave a snapshot of the distribution of UTM research funding from different sources and clarified the current funding environment with respect to the federal and provincial governments. The agenda concluded with a presentation from the Assistant Dean on the process of curriculum changes and related timelines, since the curriculum reports are scheduled to be discussed at the next meeting of the Committee.

It was duly moved and seconded, that the report of the Academic Affairs Committee be accepted. (A. Wensley / R. Baker) The motion was approved.

b) Computing Committee – J. Lim

Mr. Lim reported that since the October 27, 2004 meeting was the Committee’s first meeting in the fall term, members received updates from Micro Electronics and Computer Services on summer activities, which included a large amount of work related to the newly opened CCIT building and the move of Psychology laboratories. The Committee also heard an update from the Web Master on the implementation of a new content management system for the UTM web site, called Typo3. The new system took effect in August of 2004, after appropriate training was provided to administrative personnel. Mr. Lim added that additional training sessions on the new system are planned for January of 2005. He also reported that as part of the discussion of the new content management system, members raised the issue of branding and were informed that the Office of Advancement has responsibility over the branding process for UTM.

The Computing Committee also discussed a revision to the Committee’s terms of reference, and approved the addition of computing related items that were removed from the terms of reference of the Academic Affairs Committee.

i) Review of the terms of reference of the Computing Committee

Be it Resolved

THAT consistent with recent changes made to the terms of reference of the Academic Affairs Committee in which these items were removed, sections c, d, and e be added to the terms of reference of the Computing Committee as follows:
c. Instructional Media, d. Micro Electronics, and e. Computer Services.
(J. Lim / I. Orchard)

The Motion was approved.

It was duly moved and seconded, that the report of the Computing Committee be accepted. (J. Lim / S. O’Connell) The motion was approved.

5. Vice-President and Principal’s Report

The Vice-President and Principal expressed his thanks to the Executive Director of Advancement, the Director of Conference Services, the Director of Athletics and the Chief Librarian and their respective teams for their outstanding roles in organizing the Recreation, Athletics and Wellness Centre wall-breaking event and the Hazel McCallion Academic Learning Centre ground-breaking event. He noted that on November 3, 2004, over 300 people from the UTM, University of Toronto and Mississauga communities attended an exciting and uplifting event for the Hazel McCallion Academic Learning Centre, which featured an animated multi-media presentation of the project. This presentation will also be showcased at the Mayor’s Gala on November 6, 2004, which will be attended by over 1200 people from the Mississauga community. This event will provide a great fundraising opportunity for this project.

Professor Orchard also thanked the Registrar, her team and the numerous faculty, staff and ECSU volunteers, who contributed to the very successful UTM Open House, which is the first in a cycle of recruitment events.

a) Healthy Cities Stewardship Council

The Vice-President and Principal reported that the Health Cities Stewardship Centre is the result of the work completed over the past five years by Mayor McCallion and UTM faculty members Anthony Wensley, Barbara Murck and Ulli Krull. By collaborating, the City and UTM developed the “Mississauga Model” together with the World Health Organization’s Kobe Centre Program for Cities and Health. Membership on the Health Cities Stewardship Council includes representatives from the City of Mississauga, Credit Valley Hospital, Trillium Health Centre, Peel District School Board, AstraZeneca Canada Inc., Dixie Bloor Neighbourhood Centre, the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Committee, the United Way of Peel Region, Region of Peel, Peel Regional Police, MPP, Peter Fonseca and UTM. The mandate of this Council is to create a “Healthy Mississauga 2010 Plan,” for a healthy city with specific measurable health targets, and put the Mississauga Model into action. Professor Orchard explained that health in this context is broadly defined as including personal health, environmental health and matters pertaining to the quality of life of Mississauga residents, and things that can be implemented at the local level.

There will be consultation with key stakeholders in preparation of the 2010 Plan and there will be an annual report to the City of Mississauga Council and to the public.

He announced that involvement with the City of Mississauga in this project has translated into a Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) application. Dr. Kathi Wilson from Geography recently received funding from the CFI to establish “Cities, Health and Neighbourhoods Geomatics Research Laboratory (CHANGE).” The goal of the CHANGE lab is to facilitate understanding of health in the City of Mississauga by examining how social and physical neighbourhood environments shape health through the application of geographic information systems. The lab will contribute to the City of Mississauga’s healthy cities strategy theme.

Professor Orchard noted that a large part of the Centre’s activities will involve UTM students working with various agencies in the community.

b) Rae Review: Town Hall meeting at UTM, November 15, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.

Professor Orchard thanked the UTM community for attending the recent Town Hall meeting and providing feedback. The context paper, along with the draft response, has been made available on the web on the University of Toronto home page and their general direction has been approved in principle by Governing Council. Professor Orchard noted that UTM community members are encouraged to provide feedback to Carolyn Tuohy on the Rae Review section of the University of Toronto home page. Changes are continuously being made to the draft response, which will eventually be merged with the context paper. He announced that Bob Rae and his commission will hold a Town Hall meeting at UTM on November 15, 2004, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m., in the Matthews Auditorium. This is considered the meeting for GTA West. The Rae Commission is also holding roundtable discussions by invitation only in various parts of the Province.

c) UTM’s new Chief Administrative Officer

The Vice-President and Principal was pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Ray deSouza as UTM’s new Chief Administrative Officer. Mr. deSouza joined the University in 1988 as the administrative officer in the Department of Physics responsible for budget, procurement, human resource management and facilities management. He was then recruited to the Dean’s office and became first Director of the Faculty of Arts and Science new office of Administrative Services and Planning, which was created to manage the physical infrastructure of the vast network of offices, laboratories, classrooms, computer labs, workshops and information technology networks and support services. Professor Orchard noted that Mr. deSouza is very sensitive to the needs of faculty, staff and students and will work closely with the UTM community to improve resources and services. He will begin his tenure at UTM on November 15, 2004.

Professor Orchard also thanked Mr. Jim Linley for stepping in as Acting Director of Business Services.

The Chair opened the floor to questions.

In response to a member’s question, Professor Orchard explained that the Town Hall meetings are open and everyone is invited to attend and provide feedback.

In response to a member’s question about UTM’s position on the Rae Review, the Vice-President and Principal stated that UTM is fully supportive of the University of Toronto submission, which is presented on behalf of all three campuses. He added that a goal of the response paper could be to show the leadership and distinctiveness of the University of Toronto among Ontario Universities. For example, one of the proposals is for the University of Toronto’s library system to become the digital library or archive of the entire system, which is something that no other university in Ontario can do. Another idea could be that as a research intense university, the University of Toronto can have an interaction with the other great universities around the world at the level of faculty, staff, and student exchanges and research programs. This idea could further be expanded to the leadership of UTM in its relationship with the surrounding municipality and how this success could be broadened to the relationship of the University of Toronto with the City of Toronto. This idea could then be expanded even further to bridging together university cities around the world.

Professor Orchard emphasized the need to make the University of Toronto response distinctive and to show how the institution can help other universities in Ontario so that existing infrastructures are not duplicated. He commented that Bob Rae is already convinced of the funding need of universities. The University’s role is to show how it can play a distinctive role in changing the education system. While acknowledging the importance of the tuition debate as part of this discussion, Professor Orchard encouraged the input of ideas and feedback on how the educational system could be improved.

A member commented that tuition is one aspect of the response paper that affects students the most and expressed his concern about the ability of Governing Council to set tuition to an unacceptable level. The Vice-President and Principal agreed that tuition should be a part of discussion. He emphasized that besides tuition, focus should also be maintained on living costs, residence costs and rent to include the larger picture of the cost of going to university and how that is funded. He added that the ratio of tuition to average income was much higher 25 years ago than it is now. He explained that tuition is from 0-100% of what Governing Council has approved, depending upon financial need. The University of Toronto’s financial aid program distributes $70-80M per year in need-based funding to students. Moreover, access to the University from low-income background students has increased over the last five years.

In response to a member’s comment about the position of Ontario universities as compared to other provinces, the Vice-President and Principal explained that Ontario universities are currently last in terms of funding among all of the provinces and one of the goals of the Rae Review is to bring this funding up to the level of at least the national average of other provinces.

Another member suggested that similar to Colleges, universities should have work placements in every field of study. Professor Orchard commented that although work study programs exist, they are regulated by the government and are only available to students who receive OSAP funding. He added that reforms with respect to OSAP, the work study program and the ability of international students to work, are all topics in the University’s response paper.

In response to a member’s question, the Vice-President and Principal explained that one of the goals of the Faculty of Medicine and its involvement with UTM is to be associated with the community hospitals. The Healthy Cities Stewardship Centre (HCSC) is viewed as a vital link between medical students and community agencies. He updated members on the graduate program in biomedical communications, stating that the program was working with various departments to explore the possibility of an undergraduate program in Health Communication, which would be an ideal fit with the HCSC.

A member expressed his view that the current funding environment is adversely affecting the intake of graduate students, and that this in turn is having an effect on faculty recruitment. The Vice-President and Principal noted that according to recent statistics, this phenomena has not occurred as of yet. He added that universities are asking for the removal of caps with respect to provincial funding for graduate students in light of the expansion. Professor Orchard also added that the University of Toronto is unique in providing guaranteed funding for graduate students for five years of doctoral stream study.

A member stated the importance of incorporating the concerns and input of students, so that the resulting response paper is a creative and innovative one. In response to the member’s comment that there is no financial aid for part-time students, the Vice-President and Principal stated that such a program in fact existed.

A member commented that the report did not seem to include discussion on the broader issue of public versus private funding for universities and on the decreased value that society seems to place on post secondary education. The member commented that in addition to the funding issue, universities must emphasize the public good they provide to society. Another member pointed out that one way to communicate this public good would be to focus on universities’ contributions to the community.

In answer to a member’s comment that student fees are funding capital campaigns, the Vice-President and Principal explained that tuition represents approximately 30% of the budget of the university and that in the case of the Academic Learning Centre project, $27M of the project is funded by the government, $6M is to projected to be from fundraising and another $1M is being provided by UTM.

A member expressed concern regarding the types of checks and balances placed on Governing Council with respect to the establishment of tuition fees. Professor Orchard replied that Governing Council has to follow the University of Toronto’s policy on setting tuition, which is linked to the policy on financial aid. In addition, Governing Council is informed by a diversity of membership body, which includes students.

In response to a member’s question regarding environmental stewardship and its role as part of the Healthy Cities Stewardship Centre, Professor Orchard noted that the recently formed Council has not had a chance to discuss the details of its mandate as of yet, but that UTM’s role would include participating in internships and research projects involving community agencies.

The Director of Marketing and Communications noted that no registration is required to attend the Rae Review Town Hall meeting and added that a notice about the meeting would be posted on the UTM home page.

In response to a member’s question about other ways in which students could lobby the government for additional funding, Professor Orchard explained that little funding has been provided to universities for capital expansion projects, and therefore an important lobbying goal should be increased capital funding. This type of funding would free up funds attached to mortgages for other uses, such as the academic venture and improving the student experience.

The Chair thanked members for their feedback.

6. Other Business

There was no other business.

7. Next Meeting

The Chair noted that the next meeting of Erindale College Council is scheduled for Wednesday, December 8, 2004.

The meeting adjourned at 4:35 p.m. (R. Baker / I. Orchard)

Secretary of Council________________________Chair_________________

November 30, 2004