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4/4/24 Policy Committee Minutes

    Present: Hadi Esfahani, Robin Kar, Richard Laugesen, Robert Parker, Leslie Struble, H. F. Williamson

    The meeting began at about 12:34 p.m. with Kar presiding.

    1. Introduction. Kar called the meeting to order and welcomed the attendees.
    2. Review of the minutes for March 7, 2024, Meeting of Policy Committee. Since there were no responses to his request for comments on the minutes, Kar announced that they were approved by unanimous consent.
    3. President’s Report. Kar noted that much of the work this semester was leading toward three events: the meeting with the Chancellor and the Provost; the Promotion and Tenure Panel; and the Annual Meeting. The other major task has been the work on the web site. He feels that we are making or have made significant progress on all three events. We will be reviewing the first later in this meeting. The participants in the Panel have been chosen and the publicity will start soon. As will also be discussed later in the meeting, he has worked with Kevin Sharp to outline a program on AI and academic freedom and to suggest possible additional panelists.
    4. Schedule for Spring Policy Committee Meetings:
      1. Regular Policy Committee Meeting: The final meeting of the semester will start at 12:30 p.m. and be held electronically on May 2 (first Thursday, this is Reading Day).
      2. Annual Chapter Meeting. It was agreed that the meeting be scheduled on May 7 providing that it works for our speaker.
    5. Action Items
      1. Review of the Meeting with the Chancellor and the Provost, March 29, 2024. Kar felt that the meeting had been a constructive one. Kar felt that they were open to hearing further ideas from us on the topics on which we might follow up and procedures that could be followed. Parker suggested we might be able to help them be aware of events that occurring on other campuses. Kar asked them to suggest how we could follow up on this collaboration. This could include having this being a task assigned to a staff member in their office. Struble suggested we could follow up on his suggestion that the Chancellor’s office could sponsor a forum series on this topic. Parker suggested we also consider sponsoring a forum on “STEM and Academic Freedom” since this is a topic that needs to be covered and it would expand our Chapter’s exposure on campus. Kar concluded the discussion by suggesting that as part of his note thanking them for their participation, he will summarize the ideas that we have discussed during this review of the meeting. After giving the Committee a chance to review his draft, he would send the result to them.
      2. Promotion and Tenure Panel. The meeting has been scheduled for 10:30 a.m. on April 25. He, Parker, and Williamson have met to go over the planning for the meeting. For reference, the four panelists are: William Bernhard; Rosa Milagros Santos; Greg Elliott, Chair, Campus P&T Committee; and Carol Tilley, Chair, FAC. He will continue to consult the Policy Committee members on how to publicize the meeting effectively. Laugesen noted that the key steps are support from the Chancellor and working with administrators at the department level involved in the promotion process.
      3. Annual Chapter Meeting:
        1. Date: The tentative date is May 7, and Kar will be able to confirm this after checking with the participants.
        2. Suggested Program: The program will be “AI and Academic Freedom” led by Kevin Sharp and Rob.
      4. Reports
        1. Report on Chapter Website. Kar noted that progress is being made on the items that he discussed at the March Policy Committee meeting. He noted that it might be desirable to have it ready to go by the Annual Meeting.
        2. Membership Campaign. There was a brief discussion of how to proceed including possible further presentations at department meetings. Laugesen noted how we might link this to the presentation at the P&T Panel.
        3. Chapter Newsletter. Parker discussed how he had proceeded last year and will work with Kar on this. Williamson volunteered to draft a first Newsletter for Kar to send this semester/
    6. Adjournment. There being no further reports, Kar adjourned the meeting at about 1:25 p.m. As noted above, the final meeting of the Committee for the spring semester will be at 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 2, 2024.