BY: ADMIR DURAKOVIC
November 16, 2018
Ever since the proposed academic restructuring of FDU’s schools was confirmed by University Provost Gillian Small on Oct. 5, the fate of University College, Becton College, and FDU’s other programs have been hanging in the balance.
Three faculty senate meetings have taken place this semester to discuss plans for the restructuring and any concerns members of the faculty may have. One more faculty senate meeting is scheduled to take place before the end of the semester, on Wednesday, Dec. 12.
Faculty senate meeting minutes are usually posted online for everyone to see on the FDU website under About FDU, Our Faculty, Faculty Senate, and then Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes.
However, as of Nov. 13, the last three meetings cannot be found online. The last update was posted over a year ago, which is a link referring to the minutes for a senate meeting from Sept. 13, 2017.
In a phone call with the Equinox, the President of the Faculty Senate, Dr. Minerva Guttman, said that the minutes for the past three meetings were tracked and are ready to go online. She made a note that she would contact the Director of Web Operations, William R. Kennedy, to find out why the minutes were not being uploaded.
In an email to the Equinox, Kennedy said that the page had always existed but the navigation to get there wasn’t updated this fall.
Since that email, the website has been updated to include a link to the Sept. senate faculty meeting minutes.
One of the biggest concerns behind the possible restructuring of FDU’s schools would be the splitting of classes between the campuses. Two inevitable hurdles will be figuring out how the split schedules will line up and how students will commute between the two campuses to attend class.
Dr. Guttman clarified what was discussed at the last senate meeting.
“What was reported at the last meeting was there is a committee that’s trying to reconcile a schedule of classes,” Guttman said. “They have two schedules to choose from so that that schedule will be applicable for both campuses, to enable students to take courses from both locations.”
When asked about plans for transportation, Guttman said that nothing has been discussed yet and it is a topic that will probably be visited in a faculty senate meeting next semester.
In an email sent to the Equinox, Associate Professor Mark Farag voiced his opinion on the transportation concerns.
“My sense is that the issue of traveling between campuses may not be as big as it might seem since those discussing restructuring up to this point realize that students choose a campus for a reason, and that it isn’t trivial to get back and forth for classes,” Farag said.
Farag also highlighted the importance of other topics that may be subject to change due to the restructuring.
“I’m much more concerned about the impact on services for students,” said Farag. “For example, what is the proposed manner in which advising, scheduling, the Dean’s office functions, etc. will be handled? Any proposal we move forward with should tend to improve, not diminish, those services.”
No motions were passed at the latest senate meeting. Guttman said that they “had mostly discussions and reports on the restructuring, and a clarification of the issues by the provost so that the faculty can be comfortable with the restructuring.”