Minutes: March 4, 2010

Minutes of the UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO MISSISSAUGA ERINDALE COLLEGE COUNCIL meeting held on Thursday, March 4, 2010, at 3:15 p.m. in the Council Chamber, Room 3130, South Building

 

Present: A. Wensley (in the Chair), I. Orchard, G. Averill, A. Lange, R. Reisz, P. Donoghue, R. Da Silva, D. Crocker, M.A. Mavrinac, S. Speller, C. Bryson, L. Barber, A. Birkenbergs, A. Graham, L. Oliver, K. Horvath, P. Handley, P. Goldsmith, J. Stirling, A. Burnett, A. Stelmacovich, A. Vyas, D. Kreuger, G. Richter, C. Capewell, D. Mullings, J. McCurdy-Myers, L. Collins, K. Duncliffe, J. Lim, R. Beck, L. Robertson, H. Schepmyer, J. Delves, L. Bailey, M. Jalland, C. Boyd, A. Ahmed, K. Bolesa, R. Haroon, F. Liaqat, A. Madhavji, S. Minhas, N. Persaud, M. Waheed, M. Thuna, S. Senese, S. Gonsalves, J. Santiago, M. P. Galvez, H. Ssali, N. Jafri, C. Leung, F. Morgan, S. Tauseef, W. Edgar
Regrets: S. McCarthy, I. Still, T. Kristan, T. Bhandari, S. Munro, G. Kambourov
In attendance: T. Breukelman, S. Borg

The Chair announced that due to a scheduling conflict, the report of the Academic Affairs Committee would be moved to item 2a and that the report of the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee would be moved to item 2b. There were no objections.

1. Approval of Minutes of Previous Meeting (January 29, 2010)

The minutes of the previous meeting were approved. (P. Donoghue/I. Orchard)

2. Reports of Standing Committees and Officers

a) Academic Affairs Committee: Report of February 22, 2010 -Prof. Angela Lange

Professor Lange reported that the Academic Affairs Committee received two reports: one was from the Dean on academic program reviews and the other was the annual research report. Both of these reports would follow.

i. Reviews of Academic Programs and Units - Gage Averill, Dean

Professor Averill gave an overview of the departmental review process, which he noted is normally done every 5 to 7 years, or when a Chair's term is completed. When a department is due for a review, the Office of the Dean contacts the Chair and through consultation develops a set of standardized diagnostics. During phase one of the review process, the first step is consultation with the Chair of the department being reviewed and a provision of templates and discussion of the state of the department and its programs. This step is followed by an internal self-study, which looks at performance indicators, programs, research, teaching, governance, planning and ranking. The Office of the Dean also asks for an audit of a department's University Undergraduate Degree Level Expectations or UUDLES by Cleo Boyd, Director of the Academic Skills Centre. During the final step of phase one, managed by Melissa Berger in the Office of the Dean, external reviewers are selected and invited to conduct a review. These reviewers, who typically include a Canadian and a non-Canadian representative, meet with faculty, staff, and students and conduct a thorough review during a 2-day campus visit. They produce a report, which is submitted to the commissioning officer or the Dean.

During phase two of the review process, a departmental administrative response to the external review is produced by the Chair. The Chair and the Dean then meet and discuss the review and the following year, the Dean submits a response to the external review, which is submitted to the Provost. The Provost in turn provides a summary of the external review, which then requires a decanal administrative response. At the conclusion of phase two of the review process, the departmental review is submitted to the Academic Affairs Committee as an annual report for governance oversight.

During phase three of the review process, the summary and administrative response is reviewed by the Committee on Academic Policy and Programs or AP&P who are charged to produce an analysis of how well the review summary captures the review and how well the Dean's comments capture the report. The whole document, including the issues for discussion produced by the AP&P, then goes to the Academic Board for consideration. The review could then be subject to a possible future audit by the Quality Council.

The Dean emphasized that the goal of this entire process is to create a dialogue and address any concerns raised by these reviews. For example, in the Chemical and Physical Science departmental review, reviewers were critical of that area's infrastructure; subsequent and as a result of this, science facilities were updated. The Institute of Communication and Culture was renewed as a result of its review. As a result of both the Geography and Language Studies reviews, lines were freed up to teach key areas identified by the review.

ii. Research report - Devin Kreuger, Director, Research Affairs

The research report presentation is attached hereto as Appendix A in its entirety.

Regarding data sources, Mr. Kreuger noted that revenue values and award count numbers come from the Cognos data model, based on data uploaded from the Research Information System (RIS) module of SAP. The Cognos data is accurate as of May 21, 2009; Annual tenure-stream faculty FTE data was obtained from the Office of the Vice-Provost, Planning & Budget.

In terms of the challenges in administering units, Mr. Kreuger pointed out that faculty have the option to designate any U of T administrative unit (with which they are affiliated) as the ‘home' of the award and that awards held by UTM faculty anywhere at U of T other than UTM are not captured in the Cognos data as ‘UTM' awards.

Regarding co-principal investigators, Co-Principal Investigators RIS data is only linked to a sole U of T Principal Investigator Research revenue (& award counts) for UTM faculty who engage in research as co-PIs is not identifiable in the data. He suggested that a solution might be that Co-PIs can request from the PI that she/he authorize an internal sub-grant (a new fund) be established for the co-PI's share of the research funding. In a note on aggregate data, Mr. Kreuger noted that Data in the Cognos system does not identify individual PIs, nor individual grant awards.

He proceeded to report the findings for the 2008-09 year. Total research revenue for that year came in at just under $10M. In terms of active awards the trend is an increase. With respect to core council grants, NSERC was trending up, CIHR decreased last year, and SSHRC funding also dipped last year, but Mr. Kreuger explained that this kind of up and down movement was a very common pattern in SSHRC funding.

With respect to St. George campus comparisons, UTM core program revenues in 2008-09, were approximately $6K less revenue per FTE faculty (NSERC Discovery, SSHRC Standard & CIHR Operating). In 08-09 UTM has essentially reached parity with St. George on active core grants. UTM's grants may be of lesser value, but per faculty, the campus holds just as many grants.

In terms of department specific data, the analysis done for UTM was duplicated for each academic unit, and the results distributed to the Chairs in July. There were a number of interesting findings, including UTM units that are ahead of their St. George counterparts in per faculty core program revenues & active awards, and units that have dramatically increased their quantifiable research activity in the last five years.

For department specific trends please refer to the report presentation available in Appendix A to these minutes.

The Chair opened the floor to questions:

A member asked whether age differences in research revenue had been studied as part of this report. Mr. Kreuger explained that the age of faculty can contribute to results, since senior researchers tend to receive more revenue, but added that he had no specific data to this regard, as no data of this kind was available in the Cognos cube.

b) Resource Planning & Priorities Committee: Report of February 22, 2010-Prof. Robert Reisz

The Chair reported that there were two items considered at the February 22 meeting of the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee. The first was a presentation from Mr. Bill McFadden, Director of Hospitality and Retail Services on the campus' long term food plan. It was noted that the current facilities were not intended to service a campus of UTM's size and that when benchmarked against COU space standards, the campus is deficient in food service space. He was also aware of poor customer service issues and long lines. Mr. McFadden presented a plan to alleviate these issues in the form of a long term plan to increase food service space. In addition to increases in space, there are plans to improve food variety and choice, (vegetarian, ethnic diversity) and the quality of food. In developing the long term food plan, Mr. McFadden went through an extensive consultation process, including a town hall meeting (February 11), focus groups and a survey. The survey would be completed by the end of March and a related web site is also planned. The goal of these consultation efforts is to provide concrete direction to food services.

i. Update from the Chief Administrative Officer: Paul Donoghue

The Chief Administrative Officer provided the following update on capital projects:

· Health sciences complex: approximately three weeks behind, but this will likely be made up in the next two months

· Instructional Centre: two weeks ahead of schedule; geothermal field will be started as soon as the ground thaws

· Infill to South Building project: currently reviewing bids on responses to RFP; planned August completion

· Parking deck: initial design has been completed; discussions with designers have been started and are looking into construction companies that specialize in this kind of construction; on track to start after exams finish

· Office space on top of Thomas cottage: demolition this week

The CAO also gave a report on the process of the Master Plan update. The Master Plan working group had its kickoff meeting on February 10 and was provided with a PowerPoint presentation of planning principals and the current status of the master plan. The presentation as well as the current Master Plan was circulated to the campus community to seek feedback. The second meeting of the working group will be on March 9, which will have incorporated the feedback from the first meeting of the working group as well as the feedback received from the wider UTM community. The main principles of updated Master Plan will be presented for approval to the March 29 meeting of this committee, followed by the April 9 meeting of Erindale College Council.

He explained that the goal is to seek approval of the updated Master Plan's core elements at the April 9 meeting of Erindale College Council. These are the key elements of planning principles, future development and building sites and possible building envelopes. Once the UTM community has arrived at a consensus on these key elements, writers and planners will take the approved core elements and put the necessary text around them to produce the Master Plan in its final form. The completed Master Plan will then be broadly distributed, including at the City of Mississauga.

The CAO noted that the resulting campus master plan is not a construction plan, but rather a general plan, giving direction to building sites and parameters as the campus grows. Specificity comes later in the development of various detailed project plans.

4. Vice President and Principal's Report

· Mississauga Job Summit

Mayor McCallion held a job summit, called "Mississauga Works" on February 9, 2010. Leaders representing business, education, not-for-profit groups, labour organizations and government were all invited to come together for a half-day session to discuss and identify strategies and partnerships to increase employment in Mississauga. UTM faculty, staff, and students were active participants

As part of this process, the Mayor also accelerated the work of the Post Secondary Education Taskforce, Co-Chaired by Professor Anthony Wensley. Professor Ulli Krull, VP Research also participated and facilitated a panel and round table discussion, which fed back into the summit as a whole.

Professor Orchard noted that summit discussions would yield a report, which he would be pleased to bring back to Council for information.

· University Fund:

The Vice-President and Principal reported that UTFA released an information report in January entitled "How Undergraduates Subsidize Professional Faculties - A Look at U of T's New Budget Model," that in his opinion contained misleading and incorrect information.

Professor Orchard explained that the new budget model created transparency of budgeting around the university and as a result of this showed the existence of cross-subsidies across divisions. Professor Orchard emphasized that this was not an uncommon practice and not a new phenomenon. In fact, the President commented extensively in the Towards 2030 document on the new budget model and listed these cross-subsidies by division in a table. Professor Orchard noted that the subsidies are quite considerable in the case of UTM and UTSc, which the new budget model made very transparent. UTM contributes $1500 per student and Arts & Science contributes $500 per student: UTM's eventual goal is to reduce its contribution to $500 per student. There are other divisions that argue that they should contribute less and there are divisions that are net receivers. Professor Orchard pointed out that the UTFA newsletter erroneously argues that it would take 47 years for the cross-subsidies to be more equitable, by taking a particular year's budget report and extrapolating to other years. UTM recently contributed $5M less to the University Fund and while this campus still over-contributes, strides continue to be made in this regard every year.

The Vice-President and Principal assured members that UTM and UofT administration were alert to this issue and continue to work diligently to address it.

· Student Announcement: The Vice-President and Principal invited Jordan Weigh, director of corporate relations for Investors Beyond Borders to make an announcement:

Mr. Weigh noted that Investors Beyond Borders was very active at UTM and globally and announced that there would be an international business competition planned for May, with one round in Canada and one in Macedonia. The competition is focused on discovering and developing green technology investments in pre-emerging markets. A networking event with industry professionals has been scheduled for Thursday, March 25 at 7PM at Telus Tower at a cost of $55. He gave the following contact information for those wishing to participate and/or support the event:
Jordan@investorsbeyondborders.com; marijuana@investorsbeyondborders.com; Website: www.investorsbeyondborders.com

The Chair noted that there was no new business.

There were two other announcements from members.

· The Registrar announced that the March Break Open House will be held on Sunday, March 14, 2010. This event gives prospective students the opportunity to learn about the University of Toronto Mississauga, its academic programs and academic support services, meet current students and faculty members, and participate in organized events.

· The Chief Librarian announced This March, the University of Toronto Mississauga Library will once again participate in LibQUAL+®, an online survey designed to provide libraries with a standard, effective method to measure, track, understand and act on faculty, students and staff perceptions of service quality. All U of T Mississauga faculty, graduate students, staff and a random sample of 900 undergraduate students will receive invitations in early March to participate in the survey. The survey provides a way for the Library to hear user concerns and feedback about where services need improvement and, in turn, to understand and respond effectively to users' expectations. Ms. Mavrinac encouraged everyone to participate.

The next meeting of Council is scheduled for Friday, April 9, 2010 (new date).

The Chair gave a notice of motion for the next meeting for the campus Master Plan item.

The meeting adjourned at 4:25 p.m. (I. Orchard /D. Kreuger)

Chair _____________________________Secretary _______________________________