American Association of University Professors
Minutes of the spring meeting, April 20, 2002
The spring meeting was convened at 10:00 a.m. at McPherson College, in room 112 of Melhorn Science Hall - their new science building. The Kansas Conference was welcomed to the campus by the local chapter president, Bob Neufeld and by the interim president of McPherson College, Dr. Neil Thorburn. The guest speaker/facilator was introduced by Professor Joe Yanik
Our guest was Dr. Tom Guild, from the University of Central Oklahoma, who is president of the Oklahoma Conference of AAUP (and has held various positions with National AAUP).
Dr. Guild began his remarks by telling us about his Kansas connections. He lived in the Wichita area as a child and Kansas still feels a bit like home to him. Dr. Guild has had some notable success in building chapter membership in AAUP and he talked about some key factors. One thing is to remember that we build as much, or more, by the positive actions of our chapters as we do with the negative (assaults on the administrations). He reminded us that getting into campus politics is not fun, but it is necessary. Woodrow Wilson was the president of Princeton University before becoming the US President. A reporter asked him how he compared the politics at the university with the politics in Washington DC. Wilson replied that it was good to be in Washington with the amateurs!
Dr. Guild then divided the attendees into three groups to work on the key project that morning - to compile a list of things that new faculty members should know. After about 45 minutes the groups returned to room 112 to share tentative findings. Discussions continued until time for lunch.
The lunch was great - our thanks to Bob Neufeld for being such a fine host.
After lunch the afternoon business meeting began with President Joe Yanik, presiding.
- The minutes of the fall meeting (October 20, 2001) were distributed to all attendees. After reviewing the minutes it was moved by Rob Catlett (ESU) that the minutes be approved with one change. The reference to 'spring' meeting in the first paragraph should be 'fall' meeting. The motion was seconded and it passed with the change noted.
- The treasurer's report was distributed to the members present. After a brief explanation by the treasurer, Bob Neufeld (McPherson) moved that the report be approved. The motion was seconded and it passed.
- Regarding the morning discussions on untenured faculty and what they need to know, it was decided that the leader of each of the three groups would use e-mail to contact the other members of the group and to formalize their findings. The three group findings will then be sent to the Kansas Conference secretary who would then develop the three into a draft document that will be attached (Attachment A) to these minutes for future scrutiny and action - it will be a working document.
- Next item on the agenda was a report from an ad hoc committee formed at the fall meeting with the task of honing the procedures of a Committee A investigation in Kansas. There was an lengthy discussion and several suggestions were offered regarding the document. Attachment B is a copy of the final agreed upon statement of procedures. This will be submitted for approval at the fall meeting of the Kansas Conference. It was also noted that the 'fiasco' with the previous Committee A activities, especially at the national level, may have resulted in an organizational change at the
- Elmer suggested that it might be useful to keep Committee A (KCCA) reports on-line for viewing with the use of approved passwords. It would cost about $500 to set up the system. It was moved by Rich Hughen that if National AAUP would offer us a $500 flexible response grant to cover this cost then we should tentatively approve this project. It was seconded. There was a lengthy discussion regarding confidentiality of on-line systems. The motion carried.
- At the fall meeting (2001) an ad hoc committee was formed to find out what caused the Committee A activities of 2000 to go awry. The committee [Jim Hamilton (KSU), Lyman Baker (KSU) and Bob Neufeld (McPherson)] was not ready to offer a report at this time and so Elmer Hoyer moved that the report be delayed until the fall 2002 meeting. This motion was seconded and it passed.
- The next item of business was campus reports. Several chapters reported on their activities.
- The date of the fall meeting was tentatively set for Saturday, October 12 (or 19) to be held at Fort Hays State University - details will be arranged. The meeting was peacefully adjourned at 3:45 p.m., to the sounds of thunder above and around Melhorn Science Hall. It is reassuring to note that the sounds of thunder were merely acts of God and not acts of faculty members.
Rich Hughen (FHSU)